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The Akaroa Mail. FRIDAY, JANUARY 8, 1915. CITIZENS' DEFENCE FORCES.

_ * The i'lto being of a local corps of the Citizens' Defence Forces should meet with the ready approval o£ evury rigatfc-inkmg man in tho district who has the desire to do something towards helping the military authorities in ihe defence of this country, which is now being gradually thinned of its first line of defence, viz. the Territorials. There are those who are inclined to treat tbe Citizens' De fence Force movemenG rather lightly, and regard their usefulness as practically nil. In this they are mistaken, as the iniiitary authorities are lending every usaistvnce for the cmntiou of the !citi/" , ns' army, which, ij is pointed out, would, in the case of invasion of New Zealand, form a second line of defence, The object of organising the new army is to give those leaving to fight our battles ut th 3 front ftesh as surance that in the case of tbe enier ' I gency arising, these men could quickly be utilised for home defence purposes. Apart from this, there are many in '. tbe ranks of the citizens' army who j could, in the event of very heavy rein | forcements being required, be prepared .I to form • members of those reinforce li' mentf, and instead of being raw [material, obey would at leisfc have ■. ; mastered the elementary know ; I ledge of drill, ' which would 'i be of the greatest assistance : ; were they required quickly The ' | citizen.' army is composed of men

who are not Territorials, and though many are old volunteers, probably too old for service abroad or unable to get away with the forces. These men will therefore fill a gap in home .defence. But'among the oitiVns there ace many who are leUepn tbe ag&p or 25 and 50 years, wbo have not come under the compulsory military training scheme, and yet are keen to do their share. It is in thei training of these men, who in an emergency could serve abroad, that tbe new citizens' army justifies its spontaneous existence. It is generally recognised that the struggle in Europe is far from over, .and Britain even now is talking of conscription to raise her second million. By this we can see that more j m u n and still more men are required before Germany is driven back to her own territory and conquered. ,The creation of tbe new citizens' forces should, then, be regarded with no feelings of lightness, a3 by giv ing tbe movement a ready support we are helping to strengthen the morale of the people, both in the dominion and at Home. Every man who reads the newspaper cannot fail to feel tbe desire to do his utmost to help the Empire in this present war, and, after he has given what be can spare for the help of tbe despatch of forces, and those who are suffering unbearable hardships by the wreckage of war in Belgium, France and Britain, then let him join these home defence forcr-iB, and show our enemies we are g n tbe Ih.f>l; degree to give our

j hi .!■ assistance.

Tbe formation of the Akavoa Company is now well in. band—thank? to th<address given by Mr Geo. Harper, of Christchurch, president of the Christchurch forces, but, we think, that this is only tbe beginning of the movement on Banks Peninsula. A little extension of the pnesent Akaroa 1 organisation is required, so that every bay on the Peninsula adds its quota to the forces Tbere should be another company formed in Little River and 3_rro_ndiDg district, and then in all tbe different bays on the Peninsula at least sections of skieen or more could be organised. In this way, without a doubt, 264 men could be organised for a Peninsula defence unit We might point out that oaah company of {}_ men or more, and each section of 10 men or more, could carry on their drill in the most convenient place for the company or section, and then at rare* intervale the whole unit could parade in a central place, probably Duvauchelle. Judging from tbe en thusiaetic way in which the matter has been taken up by Akaroa residents, there is every hkelibood that a fine force could be organised on Banks i Peninsula. The citizens' defence forces are .taking up the right attitude in obtaining tbe best instruction pos eible, and following as far as possible in their organisation tbe drill laid down for the Territorials. "A3 far as possible tbe Territorial drill ioati actors are being used for drilling the new army, and in 0 very short time an efficient army should be crea'.ed. We hope then that the movement will spread on Banks Peninsula, end that in the course of a week or two we will be able to enrol enough men to form a Peninsula .unit of tbe new j citizens' army.

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AMBPA19150108.2.4

Bibliographic details

The Akaroa Mail. FRIDAY, JANUARY 8, 1915. CITIZENS' DEFENCE FORCES., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXIV, Issue 3468, 8 January 1915

Word Count
817

The Akaroa Mail. FRIDAY, JANUARY 8, 1915. CITIZENS' DEFENCE FORCES. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXIV, Issue 3468, 8 January 1915

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