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New Zealand Order of Battle

Note: The order of battle pages in the Pacific War Online Encyclopedia are still under construction.

We present here the New Zealand order of battle from 7 December 1941 on. Units that deployed as part of a higher echelon (such as brigades assigned to divisions) are not listed separately. Also, units redesignated from other units are not included. Units that saw no service in the Pacific are not included. The intent is to give a reasonable reinforcement schedule for war games.

Tabulated information

Unit. This is the name of the unit.

Commander. This is the commander of the unit at the time of its activation. For units already active when war broke out, it is the commander of the unit on 7 December 1941. In general, we do not display commanders below flag or general rank. Ships showing a commander are the flagship of that commander.

Start. This gives the date and location of the unit's activation. For units already active when war broke out, only the location is given (at 8:00 AM on 7 December 1941, Hawaii time). If no location is given, a unit should be assumed to be at the same location as its operational headquarters (or administrative headquarters if no operational assignment is given.) Naval headquarters are located on the flagship of their commander unless otherwise specified.

Administrative Assignment. The administrative assignments in this table represent the formal organizational structure. The table is sorted by adminstrative assignment, such that every unit appears after the unit to which it is administratively assigned.

Operational Assignment. The operational assignment, if one is given, represents temporary attachment to another unit for a single operation. For example, a cruiser might be administratively assigned to a cruiser division, but be operationally assigned to a task force for a particular mission.

Notes. Miscellaneous information about a unit, such as its manpower and equipment, where it was raised, what its initial orders were, and how well it performed in battle.

Organization of the tables

The order of battle tables are laid out for maximum readability by software tools while retaining some semblance of human readability. In addition to the displayed text and associated links, each unit has an HTML anchor with a unique identifier based on the unit name. For example, the entry for 3 Division includes the anchor 3_Division which appears immediately before the unit name in the table. These anchors are used to cross-reference the tables but may also be of use to software tools scanning the tables.

We are considering offering the complete orders of battle as SQL files or as C++ code. Users of the Encyclopedia who desire these or other formats may write to trollingshallows@msn.com and make their desires know.

The order of battle

Unit
Commander
Start
Administrative
Assignment
Operational
Assignment
Notes
Cabinet
Peter Fraser



The commander-in-chief of all Commonwealth forces was formally King George VI, but His Majesty was a constitutional monarch with very limited powers. The political leadership of New Zealand was in the hands of the Cabinet, and Fraser as Prime Minister was the de facto leader of the nation and its armed forces.
New Zealand Military Forces Sir Edward Puttick Auckland Cabinet


2 New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Bernard C. Freyberg

New Zealand Military Forces
Headquartered in the Middle East when war broke out
8 Brigade Group
Suva 2 New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Initially five battalions, plus platoons on Rorotonga and Fanning, the latter including an artillery battery. Three battalions were at Suva and two at Lautoka. Also a battery on Suva. Generally short on heavy weapons. Three more battalions were dispatched shortly after war broke out.
Territorial Forces


New Zealand Military Forces
New Zealand's militia
Northern Military District Peter H. Bell
Auckland Territorial Forces

1 Auckland Battalion

Northern Military District

1 Mounted Rifles

Northern Military District

1 Brigade


Northern Military District

Central Military District Norman W.M. Weir
Wellington Territorial Forces

1 Wellington Battalion

Central Military District

2 Mounted Rifles

Central Military District

2 Brigade

Central Military District

Southern Military District Owen H. Mead
Christchurch Territorial Forces

1 Canterbury Battalion

Southern Military District

3 Mounted Rifles

Southern Military District

3 Brigade

Southern Military District

Fiji Defense Force

Fiji
New Zealand Military Forces
Equivalent to about two battalions. Not clear how these related to the 8 Brigade at Viti Levu. Redesignated as Fiji Regiment ~1942-6-30.
Royal New Zealand Air Force Saunders Wellington Cabinet

488 Squadron
Kallang Royal New Zealand Air Force 224 Group
32 F2A3 Buffalo
5 Squadron
Nadi Royal New Zealand Air Force
4 Singapore
22 F2A3 Buffalo?
H.M. New Zealand Squadron
Auckland Cabinet

CL Achilles

H.M. New Zealand Squadron


CL Leander

H.M. New Zealand Squadron

3 Division
Barrowclough
Activated 1942-10 (Fiji)


Never had more than two brigades (8 and 14 Brigades). Disbanded in spring 1944.

Replacements

New Zealand trained 943 pilots in 1942 and 836 pilots in 1943. Air strength in the Pacific reached at least eight squadrons (four fighter, two patrol bomber, one dive bomber and one flying boat) by mid-1944.


References

Ellis (1993)

Marston (2002)

Willmott (1982)



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