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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume II

20 — Army Headquarters (Wellington) to Headquarters 2nd NZEF (Cairo)

Army Headquarters (Wellington) to Headquarters 2nd NZEF (Cairo)

20 June 1941

Colonel Conway2 arrived on 16 June. His papers despatched by safe-hand air mail have been received. Please cable immediately, firstly, whether our losses in Crete will require any alteration in the reinforcement figures already agreed upon,3 and secondly, whether General Freyberg and the Prime Minister reached an agreement on the formation of the Army Tank Brigade, as proposed by War Office, and the formation and training of this brigade in New Zealand.4 For your information, Conway had discussions at Army Headquarters, Melbourne, regarding the formation of Anzac Corps, but no definite page 13 conclusions were reached as Australia is investigating the manpower situation in order to decide what formations can be maintained overseas. If this matter was discussed by General Freyberg and the Prime Minister, please advise what decisions were made. A reply to this cable is required in connection with the preparation of a revised report on manpower needs.

2 Brigadier A. E. Conway, CB, OBE, Adjutant-General, New Zealand Military Forces, 1940–46, who had been in the Middle East for consultations on the reinforcement and reorganisation of the 2nd NZEF.