Category : News
Author: Nighthawk

The New Zealand Defence force is involved with many different treaties and agreements around the world. As well as being an ally of many countries, many of the programs and alliance you may have heard of but their may be some that you haven't. Some are not actually a defence alliance as such either, however the NZDF is a regular member of the exercises that many of these agreements and alliances have. 


Formally, the American, British, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Armies' Program, is a program aimed at optimizing interoperability and standardization of training and equipment between the armies of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States, plus the United States Marine Corps and the Royal Marines. Established in 1947 as a means to capitalize on close cooperation between the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada during World War II, the program grew to include Australia (in 1963) and New Zealand (as an observer from 1965, with full membership in 2006).

The program started in 1947 as the "Plan to Effect Standardization" between the armies of the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada (the ABC Armies), with the three nations looking to capitalize on the close cooperation between the forces during World War II.In 1954, the Plan was replaced by the "Basic Standardization Concept".

Australia joined the organization in 1963, and the ABCA Program was established with the ratification of the "Basic Standardization Agreement 1964" on 1 October 1964. In 1965, Australia successfully sponsored the introduction of New Zealand to the agreement as an observer.

Originally, the role of ABCANZ was limited to issues of standardization for soldier equipment, training, and tactics. Following the September 11 attacks, a review by the Program's Heads of Delegations saw the Program modified to address the changing security environment and improve responsiveness, relevance, and focus on interoperability. The overhaul was completed by June 2004.

Also in 2004, the increasing involvement of the United States Marine Corps was formally recognized with a Memorandum of Understanding between the Corps and the United States Army, allowing both forces to be represented by a single position. Following this, the United Kingdom delegation successfully incorp


AUSCANNZUKUS is an abbreviation for the naval Command, Control, Communications and Computers (C4) interoperability organization involving the Anglosphere nations of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. It is also used as security caveat in the UKUSA Community, where it is also known as "Five Eyes"

Early in World War II communications interoperability between Allied forces was poor. During March 1941 the first high-level proposals to formally structure combined operations between the United States and the United Kingdom were considered; these discussions were the genesis of the current Combined Communications Electronics Board (CCEB).

The origins of the AUSCANNZUKUS organization arose from dialogue between Admiral Arleigh Burke, USN, and Admiral Lord Louis Mountbatten, RN, in 1960. Their intention was to align naval communications policies and prevent, or at least limit, any barriers to interoperability, with the imminent introduction of sophisticated new communications equipment. AUSCANNZUKUS matured to the current five-nation organization in 1980 when New Zealand became a full member.

The organization's remit has expanded over the years, and its mission now includes fostering knowledge sharing and C4 interoperability between the navies of the five nations in order to increase operational effectiveness.

Five Power Defence Arrangements

The Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) are a series of defence relationships and mutual cooperation established by a series of multi-lateral agreements between Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, and the United Kingdom (all Commonwealth members and former colonies of the British Empire) signed in 1971, whereby the five powers are to consult each other "immediately" in the event or threat of an armed attack on any of these five countries for the purpose of deciding what measures should be taken jointly or separately in response.

There is no specific commitment to intervene militarily, unless in a dire situation. The Five Powers Defence Arrangements do not refer to exclusive economic zones (EEZ) and the enforcement of a state's EEZ rights is a matter for that state; a state may request the assistance of other states in so doing.

The FPDA was set up following the termination of the United Kingdom's defence guarantees of Malaysia under the Anglo-Malayan Defence Agreement, as a result of the UK's decision in 1967 to withdraw its armed forces east of Suez. Under the Five Powers Defence Arrangements, the five 'powers' (Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore and the UK) are to consult each other "immediately" in the event or threat of an armed attack on any of the five countries for the purpose of deciding what measures should be taken jointly or separately in response. There is no specific commitment to intervene militarily." The FPDA provides defence co-operation between the countries, establishing an Integrated Air Defence System (IADS) for Peninsular Malaysia and Singapore based at RMAF Butterworth under the command of an Australian Air Vice-Marshal (2-star). RMAF Butterworth, was under the control of the Royal Australian Air Force until 1988, and is now run by the Royal Malaysian Air Force but hosts rotating detachments of aircraft and personnel from all five countries.

In 1981, the five powers organised the first annual land and naval exercises. Since 1997, the naval and air exercises have been combined. In 2001, HQ IADS was redesignated Headquarters Integrated "Area" Defence System. It now has personnel from all three branches of the armed services, and co-ordinates the annual five-power naval and air exercises, while moving towards the fuller integration of land elements. An annual FPDA Defence Chiefs' Conference (FDCC) is hosted by either Malaysia or Singapore, and is the highest military professional forum of the FPDA and serves as an important platform for dialogue and exchange of views among the Defence Chiefs. There is also a Five Powers Defence Arrangements Ministerial Meeting (FDMM).

John Moore, then Minister of Defence of Australia said, "As an established multilateral security framework, the FPDA has a unique role in Asia. It is of strategic benefit to all member nations and, in Australia's view, to the wider Asia-Pacific region." Malaysia's CDF, former General (GEN) Tan Sri Dato' Sri Zulkifeli Bin Mohd Zin concurred: "We can help each other... and cooperate with one another."

The Technical Cooperation Program

The Technical Cooperation Program (TTCP) is a long-standing international organisation concerned with cooperation on defence science and technology matters, including national security and civil defence. Its membership comprises Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US).

Declaration Of Common Purpose
TTCP commenced in 1957 as a bilateral activity between the United Kingdom and the United States when the US President and the UK Prime Minister made the following Declaration of Common Purpose:

The arrangements which the nations of the free world have made for collective defense and mutual help are based on the recognition that the concept of national self sufficiency is now out of date. The countries of the free world are interdependent and only in genuine partnership, by combining their resources and sharing tasks in many fields, can progress and safety be found. For our part we have agreed that our two countries will henceforth act in accordance with this principle.

Australia joined TTCP in 1965; the organisation's name was changed from Tripartite Technical Cooperation Program to The Technical Cooperation Program, which allowed the abbreviation for the organisation to be kept as TTCP. New Zealand joined TTCP in 1969.

UKUSA Agreement

The United Kingdom – United States of America Agreement (UKUSA, /juːkuːˈsɑː/ yoo-koo-SAH) is a multilateral agreement for cooperation in signals intelligence between Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The alliance of intelligence operations is also known as the Five Eyes. In classification markings this is abbreviated as FVEY, with the individual countries being abbreviated as AUS, CAN, NZL, GBR, and USA, respectively

Emerging from an informal agreement related to the 1941 Atlantic Charter, the secret treaty was renewed with the passage of the 1943 BRUSA Agreement, before being officially enacted on 5 March 1946 by the United Kingdom and the United States. In the following years, it was extended to encompass Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Other countries, known as "third parties", such as West Germany, the Philippines, and several Nordic countries, also joined the UKUSA community in associate capacities, although they are not part of mechanism for automatic sharing of intelligence that exists between the Five Eyes.

Much of the sharing of information is performed via the ultra-sensitive STONEGHOST network, which has been claimed to contain "some of the Western world's most closely guarded secrets". Besides laying down rules for intelligence sharing, the agreement formalized and cemented the "Special Relationship" between the UK and the US.

Due to its status as a secret treaty, its existence was not known to the Prime Minister of Australia until 1973, and it was not disclosed to the public until 2005. On 25 June 2010, for the first time in history, the full text of the agreement was publicly released by the United Kingdom and the United States, and can now be viewed online. Shortly after its release, the seven-page UKUSA Agreement was recognized by Time magazine as one of the Cold War's most important documents, with immense historical significance.

The global surveillance disclosure by Edward Snowden has shown that the intelligence-sharing activities between the First World allies of the Cold War are rapidly shifting into the digital realm of the Internet.

In addition to Southeast Asia, New Zealand is responsible for the western Pacific and maintains listening posts in the South Island at Waihopai Valley just south-west of Blenheim, and on the North Island at Tangimoana.

The "Five Eyes" community is part of an extensive alliance of Western countries sharing signals intelligence with each other. These allied countries include NATO members, other European countries such as Sweden, and allies in the Pacific, in particular Singapore and South Korea.

In the 1950s several Nordic countries joined the community as "third party" participants. They were soon followed by Denmark (1954) and West Germany (1955).

According to Edward Snowden, the NSA has a "massive body" called the Foreign Affairs Directorate that is responsible for partnering with other Western allies such as Israel.

Unlike the "second party" members (that is, the Five Eyes themselves), "third party" partners are not automatically exempt from intelligence targeting. According to an internal NSA document leaked by Snowden, "We (the NSA) can, and often do, target the signals of most 3rd party foreign partners."

The Five Eyes are cooperating with various 3rd Party countries in at least two groups:

The "Nine Eyes", consisting of the Five Eyes plus Denmark, France, the Netherlands, and Norway.
The "Fourteen Eyes", consisting of the same countries as the Nine Eyes plus Germany, Belgium, Italy, Spain, and Sweden. The actual name of this group is SIGINT Seniors Europe (SSEUR) and its purpose is coordinating the exchange of military signals intelligence among its members.

Germany is reportedly interested in moving closer to the inner circle: an internal GCHQ document from 2009 said that the "Germans were a little grumpy at not being invited to join the 9-Eyes group." Germany may even wish to join Five Eyes. Referring to Five Eyes, French President François Hollande has said that his country is "not within that framework and we don't intend to join." According to a former top U.S. official, "Germany joining would be a possibility, but not France – France itself spies on the US far too aggressively for that."

Five Eyes

The Five Eyes (FVEY) is an intelligence alliance comprising Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. These countries are parties to the multilateral UKUSA Agreement, a treaty for joint cooperation in signals intelligence.

The origins of the FVEY can be traced back to the post–World War II period, when the Atlantic Charter was issued by the Allies to lay out their goals for a post-war world. During the course of the Cold War, the ECHELON surveillance system was initially developed by the FVEY to monitor the communications of the former Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc, although it is now used to monitor private communications worldwide.

In the late 1990s, the existence of ECHELON was disclosed to the public, triggering a major debate in the European Parliament and, to a lesser extent, the United States Congress. The FVEY further expanded their surveillance capabilities during the course of the "war on terror", with much emphasis placed on monitoring the World Wide Web. The former NSA contractor Edward Snowden described the Five Eyes as a "supra-national intelligence organisation that does not answer to the known laws of its own countries". Documents leaked by Snowden in 2013 revealed that the FVEY has been spying on one another's citizens and sharing the collected information with each other in order to circumvent restrictive domestic regulations on surveillance of citizens.

In spite of continued controversy over its methods, the Five Eyes relationship remains one of the most comprehensive known espionage alliances in history.


Since processed intelligence is gathered from multiple sources, the intelligence shared is not restricted to signals intelligence (SIGINT) and often involves defence intelligence as well as human intelligence (HUMINT) and geospatial intelligence (GEOINT).


The Australia, New Zealand, United States Security Treaty (ANZUS or ANZUS Treaty) is the 1951 collective security non-binding agreement between Australia and New Zealand and, separately, Australia and the United States, to co-operate on military matters in the Pacific Ocean region, although today the treaty is taken to relate to conflicts worldwide. It provides that an armed attack on any of the three parties would be dangerous to the others, and that each should act to meet the common threat. It set up a committee of foreign ministers that can meet for consultation.

The treaty was one of the series that the United States formed in the 1949–1955 era as part of its collective response to the threat of communism during the Cold War. New Zealand was suspended from ANZUS in 1986 as it initiated a nuclear-free zone in its territorial waters; in late 2012 New Zealand lifted a ban on visits by United States warships leading to a thawing in tensions. New Zealand maintains a nuclear-free zone as part of its foreign policy and is partially suspended from ANZUS, as the United States maintains an ambiguous policy whether or not the warships carry nuclear weapons and operates numerous nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines; however New Zealand resumed key areas of the ANZUS treaty in 2007.

The treaty was previously a full three-way defence pact, but following a dispute between New Zealand and the United States in 1984 over visiting rights for ships and submarines capable of carrying nuclear arms or nuclear-powered ships of the US Navy to New Zealand ports, the treaty became between Australia and New Zealand and between Australia and the United States, i.e. the treaty has lapsed between the United States and New Zealand, although it remains separately in force between both of those states and Australia. In 2000, the United States opened its ports to the Royal New Zealand Navy once again, and under the presidency of Bill Clinton in the US and the government of Helen Clark in New Zealand, the countries have since reestablished bilateral cooperation on defence and security for world peace.

While ANZUS is commonly recognised to have split in 1984, the Australia–US alliance remains in full force. Heads of defence of one or both states often have joined the annual ministerial meetings, which are supplemented by consultations between the US Combatant Commander Pacific and the Australian Chief of Defence Force. There are also regular civilian and military consultations between the two governments at lower levels.

Annual meetings to discuss ANZUS defence matters take place between the United States Secretaries of Defense and State and the Australian Ministers of Defence and Foreign Affairs are known by the acronym AUSMIN. The AUSMIN meeting for 2011 took place in San Francisco in September. The 2012 AUSMIN meeting was in Perth, Western Australia in November.

Unlike the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), ANZUS has no integrated defence structure or dedicated forces. Nevertheless, Australia and the United States conduct a variety of joint activities. These include military exercises ranging from naval and landing exercises at the task-group level to battalion-level special forces training, assigning officers to each other's armed services, and standardising equipment and operational doctrine. The two countries also operate several joint-defence facilities in Australia, mainly ground stations for spy satellite, and signals intelligence espionage in Southeast and East Asia as part of the ECHELON network.

During the 2010s, New Zealand and the US resumed a close relationship, although it is unclear whether the revived partnership falls under the aegis of the 1951 trilateral treaty. The Wellington Declaration of 2010 defined a "strategic partnership" between New Zealand and the US, and New Zealand joined the biennial Rim of the Pacific military exercise off Hawaii in 2012, for the first time since 1984. The US prohibition on New Zealand ships making port at US bases was lifted after the 2012 exercise.

Wellington and Washington Declarations

Wellington Declaration
On 4 November 2010, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton began her three-day visit to New Zealand and at 4:23 pm, she co-signed the Wellington Declaration with New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully. The agreement signals closer relations between New Zealand and the United States, with an increase in the strategic partnership between the two nations. In doing so, the agreement stresses the continued pledge for the United States and New Zealand to work together, explicitly saying that: "The United States-New Zealand strategic partnership is to have two fundamental elements: a new focus on practical cooperation in the Pacific region; and enhanced political and subject-matter dialogue – including regular Foreign Ministers' meetings and political-military discussions." The agreement also stresses the continued need for New Zealand and the United States to work together on issues like nuclear proliferation, climate change and terrorism.

Washington Declaration and Military Cooperation
The Washington Declaration between the United States and New Zealand, signed on 19 June 2012 at the Pentagon, established a framework for strengthening and building the basis for defense cooperation. The agreement was signed by New Zealand Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman and US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta.[59] While non-binding and not renewing ANZUS treaty obligations between the US and New Zealand, the Washington Declaration established the basis for increased defense cooperation between the two states.

On 21 September 2012, while on a visit to New Zealand, US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta announced that the United States was lifting the 26-year-old ban on visits by New Zealand warships to US Department of Defense and US Coast Guard bases around the world "These changes make it easier for our militaries to engage in discussions on security issues and to hold co-operative engagements that increase our capacity to tackle common challenges. [We will work together despite] differences of opinion in some limited areas." At the same time, however, New Zealand had not changed its stance as a nuclear-free zone.

On 29 October 2013, in a joint statement at the Pentagon, New Zealand Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman and US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel confirmed the two countries would resume bilateral military cooperation. The announcement followed a successful meeting of Pacific Army Chiefs, co-chaired by New Zealand and the US. New Zealand was set to take part in an international anti-piracy mission in the Gulf of Aden, and participate in an upcoming Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC).

The Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) invited the US Navy to send a vessel to participate in the RNZN's 75th Birthday Celebrations in Auckland over the weekend of 19–21 November 2016. The guided-missile destroyer USS Sampson became the first US warship to visit New Zealand in 33 years. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key granted approval for the ship's visit under the New Zealand Nuclear Free Zone, Disarmament, and Arms Control Act 1987, which requires that the Prime Minister has to be satisfied that any visiting ship is not nuclear armed or powered. Following the 7.8 magnitude Kaikoura earthquake on 14 November 2016 the USS Sampson and other naval ships from Australia, Canada, Japan and Singapore were diverted to proceed directly to Kaikoura to provide humanitarian assistance.



Major non-NATO ally (MNNA) is a designation given by the United States government to close allies that have strategic working relationships with the US Armed Forces but are not members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). While the status does not automatically include a mutual defense pact with the United States, it still confers a variety of military and financial advantages that otherwise are not obtainable by non-NATO countries.

MNNA status was first created in 1987 when section 2350a, otherwise known as the Sam Nunn Amendment, was added to Title 10 (Armed Forces) of the United States Code by Congress. It stipulated that cooperative research and development agreements could be enacted with non-NATO allies by the Secretary of Defense with the concurrence of the Secretary of State. The initial MNNAs were Australia, Egypt, Israel, Japan, and South Korea. In 1996, major non-NATO allies received additional military and financial benefits when section 2321k was added to Title 22 (Foreign Relations) of the U.S. Code (also known as section 517 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961), which added MNNAs to many of the same exemptions from the Arms Export Control Act that were enjoyed by NATO members. It also authorized the President to designate a nation as an MNNA thirty days after notifying Congress. When enacted, the statute designated the initial five countries as major non-NATO allies, and added Jordan and New Zealand to the list.

U.S.-New Zealand strategic and military cooperation suffered a setback after the breakdown of the ANZUS alliance in 1984 over nuclear ship entry. The designation of New Zealand as an MNNA reflected the warming of relations between the two. In June 2012 New Zealand signed a partnership arrangement with NATO further strengthening and consolidating relations.

Wellington & Washington Declarations

U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and NZ Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman signed the Washington Declaration on Defense Cooperation on June 19, 2012 at the Pentagon.  The agreement provides a framework and common vision for cooperation to strengthen and expand the bilateral defense relationship.

The Declaration marks the first time in more than 30 years that the United States and New Zealand have entered into a formal defense agreement.

It reflects a shared commitment to a stable and peaceful Asia-Pacific region and common approaches to address the region’s defense and security issues, including contemporary non-traditional security challenges.

Like the Wellington Declaration (signed in 2010), the Washington Declaration opens dialogues that include the exchange of information, strategic perspectives, and defense policies.

It includes collaboration on issues such as maritime security cooperation, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, and peacekeeping support operations.

Past Alliances

Southeast Asia Treaty Organization

The Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO) was an international organization for collective defense in Southeast Asia created by the Southeast Asia Collective Defense Treaty, or Manila Pact, signed in September 1954.

Primarily created to block further communist gains in Southeast Asia, SEATO is generally considered a failure because internal conflict and dispute hindered general use of the SEATO military; however, SEATO-funded cultural and educational programs left longstanding effects in Southeast Asia. SEATO was dissolved on 30 June 1977 after many members lost interest and withdrew.

In the years following the Second World War, Australia and New Zealand began pressing the United States for a formal security guarantee. The two nations felt threatened by the possibility of a resurgent Japan and the spread of communism to their North. Additionally, the fall of Singapore in 1942 had demonstrated that their traditional protector, the United Kingdom, no longer had power in the region. This added to their sense of vulnerability. The United States was initially reluctant, offering instead an informal guarantee of protection. But the need to strengthen the West against communism grew with the Communist victory in the Chinese Civil War in 1949 and the 1950-1953 Korean War. Additionally, the United States wanted to gain Australian and New Zealand approval for a 'soft peace' with Japan. The treaty allayed antipodean fears that such a peace would allow Japan to threaten them again.

The resulting treaty was concluded at San Francisco on 1 September 1951, and entered into force on 29 April 1952. The treaty bound the signatories to recognise that an armed attack in the Pacific area on any of them would endanger the peace and safety of the others. It stated 'The Parties will consult together whenever in the opinion of any of them the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the Parties is threatened in the Pacific'. The three nations also pledged to maintain and develop individual and collective capabilities to resist attack.

Possible Future Alliances 



CANZUK is an acronym for the theoretical cultural, political and economic community comprising Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom as part of an international body similar in scope to the former European Economic Community. This includes increased trade, foreign policy co-operation, military co-operation and mobility of citizens between the four states. The idea is supported by various organisations and think tanks, such as CANZUK International, the Adam Smith Institute, the Henry Jackson Society, Bruges Group and politicians from the four countries.

The term

The term CANZUK was first coined by the author William David McIntyre in his 1967 book Colonies Into Commonwealth in the context of a "CANZUK Union". The idea of increased migration, trade and foreign policy cooperation between the CANZUK countries was created and popularized in 2015 by CEO and Founder of CANZUK International (formerly the Commonwealth Freedom of Movement Organisation), James Skinner, who initially developed political interest for it among supportive MPs in Canada.

In the wake of the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum and the decision made by the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, writers such as Andrew Lilico and James C. Bennett, along with academics such as the historian Andrew Roberts also advocated that Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom merge and form a new entity in international politics. Andrew Roberts suggested that such a bloc could slot into the international order as a third pillar of the West (alongside the United States and the European Union). Beyond this, Roberts argues that due to its territorial scale, geographic scope and advanced economy that it would qualify as a "great power" and potentially a "global power" (or emerging superpower).

Some advocates such as Roberts favour a federal or confederal union. Others, such as Lilico describe the objective as being the creation of a "geopolitical partnership" akin to the European Economic Community. In the version favoured by Lilico, by the advocacy group CANZUK international and by the Canadian Conservative Party, the proposal would involve the creation of a free-movement zone, a multilateral free trade agreement and a security partnership. The more general concept of deepening trade ties (with or without a multilateral agreement) has many advocates, including figures such as Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, former British Prime Minister Theresa May and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.


British diaspora by country Canada, Australia and New Zealand are former settler colonies of the British Empire where people of British ethnic origin came to constitute the majority of the population. Today, the four CANZUK countries maintain a close affinity of cultural, diplomatic and military ties to one another. The Australian and New Zealand flags contain the flag of the United Kingdom in their canton; and the Union Flag is also one of two official flags of Canada (referred to as the Royal Union Flag).

Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom are also Commonwealth realms which share Elizabeth II as constitutional monarch and head of state. The countries share a number of institutional, linguistic and religious similarities such as the use of the Westminster parliamentary system of government, common law, British English terminology and, according to Augusto Zimmermann, the adoption of Christian values. The CANZUK countries form part of the English-speaking world and share a number of Anglosphere military initiatives with each other including the Fincastle Trophy, Five Eyes intelligence, ABCANZ Armies and AUSCANNZUKUS, which are concerned with increased military and naval co-operation. Canada and the United Kingdom are allied through the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation while Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom are allied through the Five Power Defence Arrangements.

Public relations are extremely warm between the four countries, with consistent evidence that people in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom regard each other's countries as their country's closest friends and allies in the world.

I do want to note here that there is no formal agreement with CANZUK countries and because of brexit it is now being called to organise official trade and alliance agreements.

What you will notice about most of these alliance defence agreements, is the countries that are involved. most of them involve Canada, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom and the United States.

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