N.Z. politico : Clinton to put Army on Y2K standby in July...

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26c Auckland

23c Wellington

23c Christchurch


-- (whonose@muddled.com), April 01, 1999


Local body leaders are poised to call for military cover to guard against [please visit our sponsor] millennium computer bug fallout, warns the mayor of one of the country's largest cities. [please visit our sponsor] Waitakere mayor Bob Harvey said the plea for military backup was likely to be issued at a summit meeting of the 86 territorial local authorities to be held in closed session in Wellington tomorrow.

The summit will be addressed by the Prime Minister, Jenny Shipley, and Mr Harvey predicted those present would ask the Government to put the Army on standby in case of civil unrest from prolonged computer failures.

Civil Defence will maintain a full staff in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch on New Year's Eve because of the fear of isolated computer system failures in important utilities.

A special commission that the Government announced last month to stop the millennium bug wreaking havoc on public services has already raised concerns about the water supply and sewage disposal.

"The Year 2000 crisis is the greatest wake-up call you could have for the new millennium," said Mr Harvey, the Labour Party's new president.

"In Britain the Army is on standby, as it is in Ireland, France, Germany and Canada. I understand President Clinton will put the Army on standby in the US in July."

Mr Harvey said his city was one of those that had passed muster with the Auditor- General as having systems in place to deal with the computer bug, but others could expect a roasting tomorrow.

Local Government New Zealand wants the Auditor-General to identify the 19 councils that an audit of readiness deemed were putting their communities at risk.

Mr Harvey said local authorities had been meeting on the Year 2000 compliance issue since he raised it six months ago, but previously it was not even on the agenda.

"The horror in all of this is you are a victim of other people's systems," he said.

"If we don't get our computers right we won't be able to send out the rates ... The courts will be jammed for years."

Governments and everyone associated with the computer industry had known of the potential for millennium problems since 1952 but had claimed they would not happen.

The upshot was a $16 trillion global systems clean-up - money that could have been spent on the world's poor, he said.

A Defence Force spokesman, Wing Commander John Seward, said troops had been advised some months ago to consider taking holidays before December 27 in case they might be needed to support millennium "activities." ) Copyright 1999, NZ Herald [Image] [please visit our sponsor] [submit] [last][next]

-- (whonose@muddled.com), April 01, 1999.

Hi ... could somebody please explain exactly what "army on standby" means? Thanx

-- Leska (allaha@earthlink.net), April 01, 1999.

I think that should be $1.6 trillion. Hey, it's hard to proofread that little response box.

-- Puddintame (achillesg@hotmail.com), April 01, 1999.

Leska -

who knows? this guy sounds like he was blue-skying....

-- Arlin H. Adams (ahadams@ix.netcom.com), April 01, 1999.

If Clinton still HAS an army!!!!

Got fatigues? Better hide 'em, you will be drafted!

-- Taz (Tassie@aol.com), April 01, 1999.


Putting a military unit "on standby" means the unit has to be ready to deploy within "x" hours. The timeframe depends on what kind of standby status is invoked. It could be thirty days, one or two weeks, seventy-two hours or twenty-four hours for Army units.

Example: At Ft Bragg, NC the 82nd Airborne Division always has one brigade on standby to be boarding planes within 24hrs notice. The rest of the division either just got off 24hr standby and will begin training, is training, or is finishing a training cycle is preparing for their turn on standby. While a unit is on standby its members aren't allowed leave, etc...

If as this post implies Clinton is putting the troops on short-notice standby this summer, I believe there are going to be a lot of P O-ed GIs by January 1. I've spent my time being on telephone standby, and it was no fun for just an Air Force weekend standbys. It's worse than being on alert, because at least then you're in the alert facility and you're not tempted and taunted by all the things you *could* be doing if you weren't tethered to the phone waiting for the "be at the assembly point in one hour" call.

For these folks, being "trapped" beside the phone for six months will drive bunches of people out of the service out of frustration. Not to mention to divorce court when they can't do anything with their families.


-- Wildweasel (vtmldm@epix.net), April 02, 1999.

Thank you very much for your explanation, Wildweasel. Really appreciate it when my questions are answered. Many of these terms we've heard but do not know their exact meanings. Definitions are important to clear understanding. Also, WW, thanks for your comments on the gas line explosions/fires causing houses/blocks to burn. We learned this has precedent and is very possible! Thanx

xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxx

-- Leska (allaha@earthlink.net), April 03, 1999.

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