Jwenting - of course you are right, we are unable now or previuously to defend ourselves against a determined attacker. However NZ could spend 50% of GDP and still not be able to do so. Our population is tiny and area to defend is huge.
Much better to acknowledge reality and concentrate resources. For the airforce that is IMHO 3 areas, namely maritime reconnasince/search and rescue, logistic support for the Army and Navy i.e. fixed wing and rotar transport, anti-submarine/search and rescue choppers for the Navy.
Now weather the savings from scrapping fighters is passed on to those areas as promised is another issue but I still think it was the best idea given the resources available.
Can you really compare NZ to small european countries ? Who will attack us and why would they want to ?
" Help, help ... I'm being oppressed ... "