Written By: - Date published: 7:00 pm, February 20th, 2021 - 41 comments
In February 2002 I was at a union-NDP conference in Ottawa watching US television in my hotel room. Back home I reported on the conference to the Labour Party caucus and stated as an aside that the US was going to war with Iraq. Helen Clark stood up straightaway and said “we won’t be going with them.” Jacinda Ardern needs to do the same now.
Written By: - Date published: 6:25 pm, February 6th, 2021 - 67 comments
Radio New Zealand carried a long story this week from the BBC of rape allegations in Xinjiang based on accounts from two Uyghur women Tursunay Ziawudun and Gulzira Auelkhan. Independent analyst Bernhard at Moonofalabama asks the question “Why do these Uyghur witnesses stories constantly change?
Written By: - Date published: 6:15 pm, January 25th, 2021 - 6 comments
Retired Hong Kong Final Court of Appeal Judge Henry Litton raises some important questions about the motivations of the 53 would-be legislators recently arrested in Hong Kong. Five Eyes countries including New Zealand were quick to condemn the arrests, but Litton states their aim was to implement a wider plot called “10-steps to mutual destruction,” and to use their powers as legislators to create chaos.
Written By: - Date published: 12:27 am, January 5th, 2021 - 104 comments
Great news. While unexpected, Nicky Hager who was an expert witness for Assange at the trial, thought this might be a possibility when he spoke to the Fabian Society in November. More details tomorrow.
Update: Bail application to be heard on Wednesday London time.
Written By: - Date published: 6:07 pm, December 16th, 2020 - 22 comments
“Do I believe that there might be an opportunity for New Zealand to create a different environment and have a conversation? Yes, I do.” Nanaia Mahuta told Reuters on Tuesday the country would be willing to help negotiate a truce between neighbouring Australia and regional heavyweight China, who are caught in an escalating trade and diplomatic spat. Great idea.
Written By: - Date published: 2:34 pm, December 12th, 2020 - 13 comments
It has been good to see some pushback in the media questioning the wisdom of Mahuta’s FiveEyes alignment as the first public act of her tenure as our Foreign Minister. Chris Trotter writes in interest.co.nz that upsetting New Zealand’s most significant trading partner seems like a very silly thing to do. Others include Bryce Edwards […]
Written By: - Date published: 1:45 pm, December 3rd, 2020 - 20 comments
Colin James and Councillor Tamatha Paul will discuss Colin’s paper “Beyond Jacinda” on Monday 7 December at 5:30pm at Baptist Church, 46-48 Boulcott Street Wellington. It will also be shown on Zoom and available on YouTube. Registration links below. All Welcome.
Written By: - Date published: 7:36 pm, October 30th, 2020 - 35 comments
Following a report into anti-semitism in the UK Labour party, Corbyn said it exists in the Party but it is over-stated and the campaign against it is politically-motivated by opponents inside and outside the Party. He was instantly suspended from the party and had the whip removed by leader Sir Keir Starmer, which seems excessive and will cause further discord. Corbyn is not an anti-Semite.
Written By: - Date published: 10:56 pm, September 10th, 2020 - 12 comments
Today’s Checkpoint descended into shroud-waving in the case of a New South Wales family not able to visit their dying father in Queensland because of the strict border closure. As our health officials note, “bereavement issues” are where most care is needed to prevent the virus spread.
Written By: - Date published: 9:28 pm, September 6th, 2020 - 60 comments
On the eve of Assange’s extradition hearing in London, award-winning freelancer Jonathan Cook has written a scathing indictment of corporate journalism’s collusion in ignoring his official torture. I posted an example of that here last year, where Richard Harman denied Assange was a journalist at a panel convened at Parliament by the British High Commissioner.
Written By: - Date published: 10:27 am, August 25th, 2020 - 23 comments
The Trump administration has declared war on China, and there is much speculation in the punditry as to whether or not this is a new Cold War similar to that waged post World War 2 against Russia. In my opinion, the 19th century Opium Wars may offer a more appropriate analogy, albeit with a likely different outcome.
Written By: - Date published: 7:59 pm, August 17th, 2020 - 99 comments
Canterbury University is conducting a review of statements made to the Justice Select Committee by Professor Anne-Marie Brady alleging covert military transfer to China which complainants from other Universities under attack said “contained manifest errors of fact and misleading inferences.” The University would do well to broaden its review to encompass the NATO-funded Canterbury SSANSE which Brady heads. The military-purpose link there is explicit.
Written By: - Date published: 5:37 pm, August 2nd, 2020 - 5 comments
Trump has announced he will ban Tik-Tok from the United States. It’s Chinese-owned so there. Or maybe he will force it to be sold to Americans.Don’t think security is the issue; kids used it to stuff up his Tulsa rally. And it is good for mockery, as clips about Trump and Pompeo show. Don’t think that will stop if Americans own it.
Written By: - Date published: 9:03 pm, July 31st, 2020 - 13 comments
A justified operation, no organised cover-up, but serious failures in senior defence personnel’s denial and misrepresentation, and serious failures by the intelligence agencies in handing over a suspect to torture. The Inquiry called for a review of Defence administration, an Inspector-General of Defence, a Defence Force order on dealing with allegations of civilian casualties, and an “effective detention policy.”
Written By: - Date published: 12:52 pm, July 30th, 2020 - 15 comments
Australia’s Foreign Minister Marise Payne and Defence Minister Linda Reynolds traveled to the US this week to meet face-to-face with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Minister Mark Esper. In what was clearly meant as a follow-up to recent speeches on China by the Americans, Payne firmly declined to join Pompeo in in his call for regime change in China.
Written By: - Date published: 9:49 pm, July 28th, 2020 - 38 comments
According to our Prime Minister, today’s announcement that New Zealand is suspending extradition arrangements with Hong Kong is because of our principles. But it is not immediately clear what these principles are, other than falling into line with our Five Eyes spying partners. Some history is important.
Written By: - Date published: 8:19 pm, July 1st, 2020 - 12 comments
Richard Northey and Nicky Hager will discuss their experiences with the SIS over the past thirty-five years, what they reveal about the agency’s values and culture, and what we might want to see in the forthcoming review of the intelligence and security agencies post the Christchurch mosque massacre. St Andrews Church, The Terrace, Wellington, Friday 3 July 5:30pm. All welcome, register here.
Written By: - Date published: 3:11 pm, June 19th, 2020 - 8 comments
Is it time to completely rethink how we deal with unemployment? We face a tsunami of job losses not seen in generations. Two ideas — social insurance and a job guarantee — are gaining prominence as ways to change how we deal with the problem. One provides income protection for those who lose employment, the other aims for something bolder: the elimination of unemployment. All welcome; register here.
Written By: - Date published: 4:51 pm, June 12th, 2020 - 31 comments
…is the US sharemarket roaring away – up 44% – while economic recovery prospects are grim?” ANZ’s Sharon Zollner’s answer on Tuesday was the Fed printing money, but worried markets were turning a blind eye to the bad news. The bad news hit today as the sharemarket nose-dived. Wolf Richter’s answer was more to Kim’s point: “Fed bails out the wealthy while America convulses in pain.”
Written By: - Date published: 10:03 pm, June 9th, 2020 - 37 comments
Skripal’s relatives don’t believe it, Jacinda Ardern doesn’t believe it, Paul Buchanan doesn’t believe it, and I never believed it. But a story planted in the UK Sunday Times that the Skripals are here lets our media rerun the assassination attempt that failed, even though the most deadliest poison in the world was involved. Stuff website has a British Minister from Theresa May’s time rerunning the old lies,as does the NZ Herald. Fits in nicely with the SIS anti-Russian history.
Written By: - Date published: 9:38 pm, April 21st, 2020 - 41 comments
More 1% Americans are heading our way, according to Bloomberg. The Texas company building underground bunkers is getting more enquiries. They’re not running from the virus but fear the aftermath when the breadlines turn.
Written By: - Date published: 3:55 pm, April 15th, 2020 - 60 comments
According to Stephen Mills on Nine to Noon yesterday, Jeremy Corbyn’s resignation as Labour leader will only be mourned by “the microscopic Rosa Luxemburg-worshipping far left sect in New Zealand.” His outburst was deliberate, gratuitous and way over the top.
Written By: - Date published: 10:21 pm, March 25th, 2020 - 23 comments
New York Governor Cuomo was told CoVid-19 was like an approaching freight train. More like a bullet train was his response. Watching the White House daily briefing with Trump dominant it looks like a massive train wreck is on the way in the US.
Written By: - Date published: 12:27 pm, January 22nd, 2020 - 21 comments
Join people from across the globe for this international day of action to show our opposition to any new US war on the people of Iran or Iraq. Our message is simple: * No war on Iran * No war on Iraq * Troops out. More information on Facebook here.
Written By: - Date published: 2:21 pm, January 6th, 2020 - 76 comments
General Soleimani was visiting Iraq at the request of the Iraqi Prime Minister to discuss mediation between the US and Iran. Following his assassination by the US the Iraqi Parliament has voted to ask all foreign troops to leave the country. New Zealand’s remaining troops should bring forward their scheduled departure and leave immediately.
Written By: - Date published: 10:28 pm, January 3rd, 2020 - 104 comments
President Trump personally ordered the assassination of General Qassem Soleimani, head of Iran’s elite military Quds force. He was killed by rockets fired from US drones over Baghdad Airport. This is unlawful by any standards, as well as an act of war. Iran has promised retaliation.The doomsday clock just moved closer to midnight.
Written By: - Date published: 1:51 pm, December 4th, 2019 - 11 comments
I’ve always liked Punch magazine’s famous cartoon “True humility” where the curate assures his bishop noticing his bad egg that parts of it are excellent. Most discussion on Little’s Bill has focused on the bad bits regarding foreign donations. The good bit requires all political ads online to be attributed.
Written By: - Date published: 10:39 am, October 30th, 2019 - 55 comments
The UK will learn its political fate on Friday 13 December. MPs have voted in a one-line Bill to have an election on Thursday 12 November, in the middle of winter. BoJo’s got his way if not quite the way he wanted. All bets are off.
Written By: - Date published: 4:14 am, October 26th, 2019 - 36 comments
Craig Murray reports on the horror of Julian Assange’s treatment by British so-called “justice.” Read it and don’t weep. You can see why Murray resigned from the UK foreign service; their diplomacy is just as bad.
Written By: - Date published: 1:03 am, September 25th, 2019 - 75 comments
Lady Hale and the UK Supreme Court have torpedoed Boris Johnson’s cunning plan to prorogue Parliament. His request to the Queen was “unlawful, void, and of no effect.” Her Maj will not be pleased. Johnson is now boxed in – ask for an extension to Brexit, or resign.
Written By: - Date published: 2:09 am, September 19th, 2019 - 21 comments
France President Macron’s remarkable and wide-ranging speech to French ambassadors after France hosted the recent G7 conference in Biarritz is well worth a read. He lays it all out – so much better than Trump’s tweets or BoJo’s bluster.