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But which club?

Written By: - Date published: 3:41 pm, January 21st, 2015 - 7 comments

2011logo

I think when justifying sending troops to Iraq the club John Key is really talking about is the group of right-wing political parties known as the International Democratic Union. Today Key chairs its Executive in Sarajevo, his first meeting as President. This move by Key to the IDU is calculated; he sees himself as leader of the world right-wing club and this is the first step to his international political career post New Zealand politics.

The price of the club

Written By: - Date published: 8:17 am, January 21st, 2015 - 179 comments

gentlemans-club

Yesterday Key justified our likely military intervention in Iraq as “the price” of being in “the club” with other Five Eyes countries.

So what is happening with the price of oil?

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, December 18th, 2014 - 137 comments

oil drums large thumb

The price of crude oil has nearly halved in the past six months and is causing massive repercussions throughout the world with both the Russian economy and the American Shale Oil industry under threat.  The geopolitical implications are complex.

NRT: Least preferred option

Written By: - Date published: 5:33 pm, November 17th, 2014 - 40 comments

Poodle belly scratch

Back in September, John Key said that sending the SAS to Iraq was his “least preferred option”, “at the very outer edge of what we’d be wanting to do”. Today, he’s changed his tune in his predictable way. Such a poodle wanting to have his belly scratched by his masters.

Turei for peace & freedom: rejects politics of fear

Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, November 5th, 2014 - 101 comments

stop politics of fear

Metiria Turei delivered a very strong speech in response to Key’s ministerial statement on national security.  I give her a standing ovation! Update #1: link to video of Turei’s speech. #2 -YT video Turei’s speech.  Link to Kennedy Garham’s speech

Key on ISIS

Written By: - Date published: 12:34 pm, November 5th, 2014 - 136 comments

war-on-terror-thumb

Key’s much heralded speech on terrorism / ISIS is a mixed bag. As expected it will be used to justify unnecessarily increased surveillance powers. But at least we aren’t sending combat troops.

Let them go to war

Written By: - Date published: 12:06 am, October 19th, 2014 - 35 comments

Nicholas Teausant

Back when I was a teenager, a mate of mine decided that he was going to give up on school and would get in some combat. So he worked his way into the Rhodesian Light Infantry. A few years later I heard that he’d been killed in action. Other young men going overseas with similar excitement issues have came back a lot less interested in excitement. Sounds safer to me than letting them have a car.

To arms!

Written By: - Date published: 12:43 pm, October 18th, 2014 - 49 comments

Time to go - Tenant-Eviction - square

We are about go to war partnered with multiple armies, none of whom is a champion of any of our democratic values of fairness, equality, human rights, or impartial justice. Meanwhile one in ten of us is about to be evicted from our state house home and put into the streets. Labour’s leadership candidates are silent in the media..

Off to war

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, October 16th, 2014 - 70 comments

250px-NZ_Army_soldiers_with_NZLAVs

Broken promise. Lies. War. The Herald willing to believe anything to defend Brand Key. Just another day in NZ politics.

NZ troops to Iraq?

Written By: - Date published: 8:41 am, October 1st, 2014 - 109 comments

sas in afghanistan

Key’s public position on sending troops to Iraq has (surprise!) changed since the election. His private position on the topic probably hasn’t changed since 2003.

Iraq and Syria

Written By: - Date published: 1:30 pm, June 16th, 2014 - 77 comments

syrian refugees

The situation in Syria and Iraq is becoming dire as two separate civil wars rage on. This raises as an issue National’s and John Key’s attitude to the war in Iraq which has clearly destabilised any hope of civilised rule. He is now claiming to be an internationalist and to only be interested in multilateral action. But has this always been the case?

Syria et al.

Written By: - Date published: 5:09 pm, August 29th, 2013 - 311 comments

syria

Sometimes the most complicated and complex situation becomes clear when viewed from a simple and obvious perspective.

Hager: Uncomfortable truths

Written By: - Date published: 7:53 am, May 5th, 2013 - 7 comments

nicky-hager

Phil Twyford on Nicky Hager’s Capt Jack Lyon Memorial Lecture Uncomfortable truths, NZ foreign policy in the ‘war on terror’. As Phil notes: “I think it is a cautionary tale for any future Labour-led government with a progressive, independent foreign policy”.

War talk

Written By: - Date published: 9:38 am, April 8th, 2013 - 125 comments

key mean 1

Key has put his foot in it again with talk of war against North Korea. Life was so much simpler when he was in opposition…

The CV of a Spy Boss

Written By: - Date published: 5:14 pm, April 3rd, 2013 - 85 comments

Ian_Fletcher

Key & Rennie say Ian Fletcher was the most suitable candidate to head the GCSB?  His CV includes working on intellectual property, globalisation and free trade, & was private secretary to the Blair minister who fudged the legal advice on attacking Iraq.

Iraq and Big Oil

Written By: - Date published: 11:37 am, September 2nd, 2012 - 32 comments

oil well

Author Greg Muttitt writes on Iraq and Big Oil.  A very useful contribution to our understanding of the forces shaping the geopolitical landscape and the likely shape of the coming energy conflicts.

Iraq war a “success”

Written By: - Date published: 8:20 am, December 16th, 2011 - 36 comments

iraq-war-victim

So the war in Iraq is “officially” over. The end of a shameful chapter.

Amnesty International: Arrest Bush for war crimes

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 am, October 13th, 2011 - 22 comments

george w bush war criminal

Perhaps Mr Key’s staff might like to explain to him what the implications of this development, in conjunction with the recent UN Report on NZ SAS rendering prisoners in Afghanistan and the housing of CIA operations at NZDF bases, might mean for the PM. Amnesty International (London) has issued a call to Canadian authorities to arrest […]

Key’s ‘Honour’

Written By: - Date published: 11:59 am, September 30th, 2011 - 41 comments

iraq-war-victim

John Key says we must stay in Afghanistan to honour the dead, leaving us to wonder who’ll be the last to die for a mistake. But he’s shown before that war is not about principles, or people’s lives to him – he’s quite happy to exchange (other people’s) blood for money: It’s not what’s right, […]

War Nerd on Al Qaeda

Written By: - Date published: 11:10 am, May 3rd, 2011 - 13 comments

osama bin laden hide and seek

The best US blog is eXiledonline. They’ve done huge work to expose the Tea Party and its shady backers. Their insight into the class issues underlying economic crisis both raw and diamond-sharp. And one of their writers, Gary Brecher aka the War Nerd, covers conflicts with eyes wide open. Here’s his take on Al Qaeda, coincidentally written last week:

Blood for milk? Pull the other one

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 pm, December 20th, 2010 - 28 comments

wavegoodbye-iraq

It’s surreal to see people who cried that not going into Iraq has cost us a trade deal with the US, now saying that the Reconstruction Team Labour sent was to get access for our milk exports. The claim’s based on a US Embassy cable but that doesn’t make it gospel. In reality, the Right wanted us to fight in Iraq to get an FTA with the US.

Who has “blood on their hands”?

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, December 1st, 2010 - 21 comments

us-embassy-seal-thumb

Amongst other angry and aggressive rhetoric, American politicians have accused the leakers of the diplomatic cables of having “blood on their hands”.  Will the leaked cables put lives at risk?  Perhaps, but I believe that many more lives would be made safe if the actions and attitudes of our governments, and the “intelligence” that they work with, were more open to the people.

A time of trouble, a time for action

Written By: - Date published: 2:15 pm, October 25th, 2010 - 4 comments

hot earth

The release of 400,000 classified documents on the Iraq war today highlights a much broader issue for New Zealand. As the world moves into uncertainty, some commentators call it a ‘new new world order’, New Zealand must establish itself definitively, cementing the values we wish to hold true for the coming century.

No victory in Iraq

Written By: - Date published: 10:02 am, September 2nd, 2010 - 5 comments

iraq-war-victim-thumb

Barack Obama declared the U.S. combat mission in Iraq officially over on Tuesday but said he would not take a “victory lap”. No victory? That’s quite an understatement…

Iraq war profiteers

Written By: - Date published: 11:40 am, August 9th, 2010 - 12 comments

iraq-slush-money-graphic-thumb

I regard the invasion of Iraq as one of the most shameful events in America’s history. The made up cover story about “weapons of mass destruction” was quickly shown to be a lie. It was always about the oil. And for too many of those on the ground it was always about lining their pockets with billions of dollars worth of slush money.

Truth out on wars

Written By: - Date published: 7:04 am, July 27th, 2010 - 12 comments

iraq-war-victim-thumb

Deputy PM and leader of the Lib Dems, Nick Clegg, caused a bit of a sensation last week when he pronounced Britain’s involvement in the Iraq war illegal. And yesterday Wikileaks published a massive cache of American military files exposing the truth about the war in Afghanistan. Not a good week for warmongers.

Allied with murderers

Written By: - Date published: 10:25 am, April 7th, 2010 - 41 comments

murder in iraq

Wikileaks has revealed footage shot from a US Apache helicopter in Iraq in 2007 as they callously murder a dozen Iraqi civilians. Every time you read of some wedding convey being shot up or a houseful of ‘insurgents’ being bombed remember this video and remember that our soldiers are now part of the combat force that is committing these same barbaric acts in Afghanistan.

Mining our national parks for the US war-machine

Written By: - Date published: 12:01 pm, March 23rd, 2010 - 22 comments

predator drone

Most of the world’s supply of the key rare earth metals comes from China. That’s a strategic problem for the US, which needs rare earths for high-tech military equipment. They don’t want to be dependent on the world’s other superpower, and potential adversary, for their military hardware. Is it a coincidence that the Nats are so keen to let foreigners mine for rare earths in our national parks?

Don’t go, oh mighty Atlas. We’ll give you tax cuts

Written By: - Date published: 1:17 pm, February 2nd, 2010 - 87 comments

So, I’m at a cafe having lunch and there’s some fat middle-aged businessmen having lunch at the table beside me. One of them is talking about Blair’s appearance at the inquiry on the invasion of Iraq and says “all these namby-pambies say ‘oh we shouldn’t have invaded’ but they would have shut up if Saddam […]

Six years – for what?

Written By: - Date published: 1:10 pm, July 2nd, 2009 - 45 comments

Six years ago the Neocon Bush administration invaded Iraq, on the pretence of looking for “weapons of mass destruction” (that were never there). Steve Pierson at The Standard covered the Fifth Anniversary, and some aspects of the death and misery caused by the invasion. Now the Americans are pulling out of Iraq’s cities, they officially […]

US ‘shoes-for-guns’ program in Iraq backfires

Written By: - Date published: 12:05 pm, December 15th, 2008 - 14 comments

[The shoe-thrower is a journo from a Baghdad newspaper taking his opportunity to make his feelings known during Bush’s surprise farewell visit to Iraq. In Arab culture, the sole of the shoe, being dirty, is insulting.]

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