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Alert Memo to President Obama: it’s better to Jaw Jaw Jaw than War War War

Written By: - Date published: 10:57 am, October 5th, 2016 - 68 comments

Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity advise Obama that the best way to get out of the dangerously escalating hawkish jam that parts of his government have put him in is to meet directly with Putin.

Syrian flash point just got flash pointier

Written By: - Date published: 1:38 pm, August 20th, 2016 - 102 comments

The major powers are ramping up the stakes in Syria in a big way.

Why do they hate us?

Written By: - Date published: 11:09 am, July 21st, 2016 - 73 comments

658 deaths due to terrorism in Europe and the Americas. 28,031 terrorism deaths in the Middle East and rest of the world.

Mission Creep

Written By: - Date published: 7:06 pm, June 20th, 2016 - 50 comments

The military mission to Iraq is to be extended by another 18 months, much to nobody’s surprise. John Key has put the creep into the mission.

What Possibility a Mid Winter Celebration?

Written By: - Date published: 2:21 pm, May 15th, 2016 - 8 comments

According to the Herald on Sunday, some people aren’t just sitting back waiting for the Chilcot report to be released before deciding what to do. Some people are getting geared up.

Putin’s “surprise” partial withdrawal from Syria

Written By: - Date published: 9:39 am, March 21st, 2016 - 86 comments

Russia is pulling out a large part of its forces in Syria. Is this a sign of Putin’s success – or a retreat that gives evidence to Putin and Russia’s weakness?

Turkey is in trouble and the US is part of it

Written By: - Date published: 11:35 am, February 23rd, 2016 - 33 comments

The Middle East temperature is heating up and Turkey is finding itself in trouble on many fronts.

General Lord Dannatt: UK should work with Assad in Syria

Written By: - Date published: 9:32 am, February 21st, 2016 - 88 comments

Russia understands how to defeat ISIS and the UK should be helping not opposing them, says a former UK Army chief of staff.

Hilary Benn: we never should walk by on the other side of the road

Written By: - Date published: 9:57 am, December 4th, 2015 - 147 comments

UK MP Hilary Benn has given one of the finest speeches Westminster has heard in years in the debate over Syria. It will go down as a defining moment in the fight against Daesh and proves that bombing alone is not the answer. Watch it. It’s how politics can be, when done right.

International law and the Turkish shootdown of the RuAF Su-24

Written By: - Date published: 8:49 pm, November 27th, 2015 - 117 comments

Assuming the Russian jet did enter Turkish airspace for 17s, was there really no recourse for  Turkey other than using lethal force?

Corbyn’s Isis Crisis

Written By: - Date published: 9:25 am, November 27th, 2015 - 89 comments

UK Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn faces his first big test. Can he command the majority in Labour over Syria? Or should he accept he is on the wrong side of history?

30 Years after ANZUS (and we’re doing fine)

Written By: - Date published: 11:01 am, November 2nd, 2015 - 14 comments

nz-speaks-300

US ship visit and nuclear free NZ

Written By: - Date published: 6:05 am, October 31st, 2015 - 77 comments

The US has been invited to send a ship to NZ. One News has a headline about a “nuclear ship”. Explosive if true, but I think this is an error. There is some confusion on the matter, let’s hope it is cleared up fast.

The (gradual?) decline of American empire

Written By: - Date published: 12:20 pm, October 6th, 2015 - 93 comments

Col. Lawrence Wilkerson was Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell. And he says that the American empire is in decline.

Stephenson beats his critics

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, October 2nd, 2015 - 27 comments

Respected journalist Jon Stephenson has extracted an apology and payment from the NZ Defence Force for their attack on his work in 2011. He is owed an apology from John Key too…

ANZAC 4 SALE

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, April 21st, 2015 - 37 comments

Has the spirit of ANZAC Day become subsumed by the commercial imperative?

The price of the club?

Written By: - Date published: 4:15 pm, February 24th, 2015 - 105 comments

Back in 2003, John Key had an interesting take on whether it was appropriate to send troops to Iraq.

ISIS. Crowdsourcing a solution.

Written By: - Date published: 11:15 am, February 24th, 2015 - 172 comments

So, we’re off to Iraq. If the answer to ISIS isn’t sending Kiwi troops, what do Standardistas think practical alternatives might be?

EDIT: Key announces 143 troops to go to Iraq and support staff.

Brownlee catches Key’s thirdtermitis

Written By: - Date published: 8:58 am, December 4th, 2014 - 34 comments

What could possibly have Gerry behaving so erratically?

Vance on terrorism scare tactics

Written By: - Date published: 7:29 am, November 10th, 2014 - 33 comments

An excellent piece by Andrea Vance in the weekend, on Key’s terrorism dog and pony show.

Reds under the beds

Written By: - Date published: 8:17 am, November 6th, 2014 - 82 comments

Governments have always used external threats (real or not) to expand their powers. Supposedly “small government” types seem the most keen to grab more powers, for some strange reason.

The terrorism card

Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, October 9th, 2014 - 46 comments

Terrorism is whatever John Key wants it to be.

A brilliant (if flawed) event – Key must resign

Written By: - Date published: 6:06 am, September 16th, 2014 - 71 comments

From Key we have changing stories, irrelevant distractions and refusal to comment. From Snowden we have compelling first person testimony and supporting documents (uncontested by any other Five Eyes leader). New Zealand is under mass surveillance.

“Moment of Truth” – a key claim

Written By: - Date published: 7:14 am, September 15th, 2014 - 152 comments

Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Glenn Greenwald is standing firm in the face of Key’s attacks and denials. A fascinating interview with Steve Braunias yesterday contains a key claim.

“Moment of Truth” – Preview

Written By: - Date published: 7:32 am, September 14th, 2014 - 67 comments

The positioning re Kim Dotcom’s “Moment of Truth” has started this morning.

NRT: A major shift in our foreign policy

Written By: - Date published: 7:34 pm, June 17th, 2014 - 33 comments

No Right Turn points to potential unacceptable changes in the basis of our foreign policy and the deployment of our armed forces. A secret review of peacekeeping keeping roles revealed by an OIA request recommends that rather than going on UN missions to support peace and keep combatants apart, we’ll be taking an active and direct role in America’s wars, against the wishes of the international community and even against the wishes of our own citizens.

Avoiding the silly wars of the republic

Written By: - Date published: 8:27 am, October 30th, 2013 - 60 comments

So the US military/diplomats has decided that we should be friends again after nearly 30 years. Whooptee do! Who really gives a pigs arse? Well I do. The republic in the USA gives all republics a bad name because of their habit of using military force for poorly thought-out ideological and even odd personal reasons. Someone to be wary of following blindly into one of their silly wars.

NRT: The spy bill

Written By: - Date published: 1:57 pm, May 7th, 2013 - 7 comments

The new GCSB spy bill is out. For the short version, as @lyndonhood commented: “Admittedly it will be easier for the GCSB to act within their legal boundaries if they don’t have any”. For the long version see the excellent I/S at No Right Turn

Hager: Uncomfortable truths

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

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”.

Defence Force Members Are Workers Too

Written By: - Date published: 10:31 am, April 14th, 2013 - 84 comments

The Court Martial of Flight Lieutenant Dan Pezaro by the NZ Defence Force is making me uneasy. The internal Court of Inquiry into this accident hinted at major disfunction within the upper reaches of the Forces in terms of health and safety. On my reading of that report, the RNZAF itself could be liable in […]

Kitteridge report released

Written By: - Date published: 4:46 pm, April 9th, 2013 - 42 comments

Following the leaking of the Kitteridge GCSB report to the media (who had copies? who leaked?) and ructions in Parliament’s question time today, the report has been released early. (Very convenient timing for the Nats!)

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