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

194 — The Chief of the General Staff (Wellington)2 to General Freyberg, GOC 2nd NZEF (Egypt) — [Extract]

The Chief of the General Staff (Wellington)2 to General Freyberg, GOC 2nd NZEF (Egypt)

2 January 1942

The complete mobilisation of the New Zealand Forces has been ordered for 10 January, providing twenty-three battalions and eighteen being formed, nine mounted rifle regiments, four field regiments, and miscellaneous and ancillary troops. Medium guns and howitzers page 218 are being utilised to cover various anchorages, leaving only one troop of 6-inch howitzers for the field forces. Field artillery includes thirty-six 25-pounders and fifty 18-pounders. The total strength will be approximately 50,000 by 10 January, rising to 62,000 about one month later, and 68,000 ultimately, all exclusive of the Home Guard. We had already advanced the annual training date for part of the force from January to 15 December, on which date approximately 30,000 troops of all categories, including New Zealand Expeditionary Force reinforcements, were in camp….1

2 Lt-Gen Sir Edward Puttick, KCB, DSO and bar, MC (Gk), Legion of Merit (US); Chief of the General Staff and GOC NZ Military Forces, Aug 1941 – Dec 1945.

1 See Vol. II, No. 53, for complete text.