Four eyes and an arsehole

Written By: - Date published: 9:06 am, May 17th, 2017 - 40 comments
Categories: International, us politics, war - Tags: , , , ,

What I found so weird about the latest saga in the the flood of White House leaks yesterday, after the news about what Trump told the Russian ambassador, was the sound of some people blindly completely missing the point.  The point is that Trump probably compromised sources of information, certainly did it without thinking about the allies who provided it, and probably did it for no better reason than he was childishly boasting to boost his ego – yet again.

New Zealand along with other allies has been in a long standing and pretty complex set of intelligence gathering and analysis arrangements with the USA since the end of second world war. These arrangements, like all similar information sharing arrangement from and with NZ and between many other other nations and groupings around the world, are done to minimise issues of accidental wars or actions due to a lack of clear information.

Surprises like Pearl Harbouraircraft deliberately flying into buildings, or nerve gas attacks on subways. Each of these cases had previously unclear and uncorroborated intelligence across many nations that could have prevented the actions and their consequences if they’d been assembled in time.

Similarly foolishness like the second gulf war searching for mythical weapons of mass destruction could have been prevented if the intelligence had been clearer than a paranoid dictatorship playing bluffing games allowed. That matched with a foolish president and prime minister who in the absence of clear information believed what they wanted to believe caused a disastrous set of destabilising wars in the middle east and the after effects worldwide.

Of course these were the failures of intelligence gathering. Less well known and usually still secret are the successes of intelligence gathering at preserving the peace world wide.

But such information sharing arrangements usually depend on levels of trust and rules about sharing. That is because the people providing information are often very sensitive about the sources of the information – a detail that is usually passed to provide corroboration as to the information’s veracity. But the information and that the receiver trusts it also can pinpoint where, from whom, and how the information was obtained. That compromises the source(s) and the ability to gain information again. It also often gets sources shutdown, killed, tortured or imprisoned.

In this case, it appears likely to have been the Israelis providing the information about ISIS   While they have their own well-known reasons for providing slanted information, they also have one of the best intelligence networks in the Middle East.

The officials, who were not authorized to discuss the matter and spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that Israel previously had urged the United States to be careful about the handling of the intelligence that Mr. Trump discussed.

Mr. Trump said on Tuesday on Twitter that he had an “absolute right” to share information in the interest of fighting terrorism and called it a “very, very successful meeting” in a brief appearance later Tuesday at the White House alongside President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey. Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, Mr. Trump’s national security adviser, told reporters that he was not concerned that information sharing among intelligence partners would stop.

Trump is, to be frank, a complete idiot. Meeting with the newly minted dictator of Turkey (on the back of an referendum that he nearly lost to get there) really does push that point across. You have to ask yourself – was Trump providing intelligence so that his fellow megalomaniac could lock up and torture more of his citizens. You really couldn’t trust this childish leaker of the free world not to do so in his attention seeking.

McMaster might not be worried about the effect on intelligence partners  willing to trust the US with sensitive information, but he’d be a minority of about one.

Even NZ with its various operations around this end of the Pacific really doesn’t need its own intelligence gathering operations blown by the current incompetent blowhard of the White House. Bearing in mind that this appears to be the new norm in US executive politics, our intelligence community should start reviewing and adapting the existing doctrine of how and when we should share information with the US.


lprent: Bearing in mind the number of soapbox fools who didn’t read what the post was about before they started jumping to conclusions like George W Bush did about Saddam Hussien, I’ve now auto-moderated the post. Comments that don’t relate to the primary topics in the post will also be shunted to OpenMike. Excessively creating work to do that are likely to get you bans. The post is about the unconstrained leaking of 3rd party intelligence by Trump and specifically if NZ should change its policy about passing intelligence to the US .

40 comments on “Four eyes and an arsehole”

  1. Yep he leaked and has admitted it. No thought of consequence just an egofart trying to show hes a big man. Shame on his supporters and the bullshit spinners who try to muddy the waters around this dangerous idiot. Low impulse control is trumps excuse not sure what the excuse is for the fake news spinners – wishful thinking maybe.

  2. Stunned Mullet 2

    Good analysis Lynn, I find myself continually surprised that Trump is as daft and ego maniacal as he comes across and that there is zero depth to the man.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      Doesn’t surprise me. It seems to be part and parcel of the right-wing. They all think that they’re special, better than they are and that the rules don’t apply to them.

      Key was the same.

      • Stunned Mullet 2.1.1

        “Key was the same.”

        Strange you also display all the same traits DTB ..and I’d had you pegged as a LWNJ.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1

          No I don’t so that would be you projecting yourself onto me.

  3. greywarshark 3

    Who knows in the complex world of fear, wariness, sudden death etc of international relations whether Trump does have a useful role in breaking in through its not so smooth wall of misinformation, lies and secrets.

    Trump’s leaks aren’t too dissimilar to selling or giving a foreign power news of a new weapon, as spies and subversives have done for so long. He is putting a spanner in the works, and perhaps he’ll be the nut that turns concepts round. The USA and the Russians have shared space exploration. That is counter to all their professed attitudes back in the day. Who knows what a new approach may result in?

    Perhaps we should ban film making, as a subversive weapon of war and fear. Hollywood was the site of the nest of subversion that was dug deeply by McCarthy and his band of unmerry men as they delved into people’s brains looking for the latest scary idea, communism. The creatives are used for making propaganda which films are. Their area of expertise is rife with subversion of ideas, principles, long-held shibboleths. Trump applying chaos theory to the propaganda story may bear some fruit if it veers away from a new iron curtain.

  4. Bill 4

    So far, all there have been are unsubstantiated and unverifiable allegations made by unnamed people who were not at a meeting.

    That’s a fact and not in any way a defence of Trump.

    There’s a power struggle going on within the US establishment. It’s kind of beyond me why some people are so keen to pick sides – to jump on bandwagons. Maybe they achieve a sense of gratification or something from running with a kind of liberal mob rule that stokes their hatred of Trump?

    Meanwhile, “Israel quickly declared it had “full confidence” in its intelligence-sharing agreement with the US..”

    Turkey is a NATO ally and it would be astonishing if a US President didn’t meet with with Erdogan (fellow bastard that he is) given the disgusting and shambolic goings on in Syria.

    And when are people going to wake up to the fact that it’s all that sits behind Trump that’s the problem and the danger and a far more appropriate target for whatever level of disapproval or opposition?

    Get rid of Trump. Get Pence. Same shit, different figurehead.

    • lprent 4.1

      So far, all there have been are unsubstantiated and unverifiable allegations made by unnamed people who were not at a meeting.

      Plus McMaster and Trump stating in public that intelligence was passed about ISIS (but not detailing what) in response to questions about the particular allegations made by WaPo.

      That is always what you get with anything to do with intelligence in anything less than decade time spans. Generally intelligence is only detailed in the history books. For instance the details about how the Zimmerman telegram got into the hands of the US were only released more than 90 years after the first world war. The details about the cracking of the enigma machine were released more than 50 years after the second world war. It has taken about 15 years to get any details about the decision to start the second gulf war.

      Your expectation is rather endearing in its simplistic nativity. However it isn’t something that I have ever seen happen.

      There’s a power struggle going on within the US establishment. It’s kind of beyond me why some people are so keen to pick sides – to jump on bandwagons.

      The increasing partisanship at various levels and directions in the US government has been obvious for decades.

      However my interest is how it affects NZ and how we should respond. Your interest in comments seems to be how it will affect Russia – something that I find to be a rather weird focus. I have no time for the dictatorial, kleptomaniac and crony economy of Russia. I tend to react when I see the faithful dribbling on about it because they like sucking down propaganda about the benevolent dictator of Russia from RT as if it was credible.

      However I also don’t see it as being at all relevant to NZ except for the way that it interferes with debate about NZ – which is why I was getting annoyed yesterday.

      • Bill 4.1.1

        They have indicated they passed details about a plot involving lap-tops. That info was so fucking top secret that the Washington Post in its article claims to know all about it. (Lap tops were banned as carry-on for UK bound flights back in April btw)

        Like you say, there’s quite a time lag at play with regards the public getting any measure of detailed info on intelligence community shenanigans. That’s absolutely no excuse to run with wild unsubstantiated claims from anonymous sources that someone may have told someone else a thing about a something that we have no idea exists or if it does, what it might be.

        It’s wavy armed conspiratorial nonsense.

        That aside, I hope your not going for the lazy “Russian apologist” angle with that second to last para? You should damned well know by now I’m no supporter of any state based governance.

        On “Five Eyes”. Correct if I’m wrong, but doesn’t the US already have unfettered direct access to anything NZ might pick up through Waihopai? Because if that’s the case, then NZ tormenting itself on whether or not to pass intel to the US becomes a laughable moot point.

        • lprent 4.1.1.1

          There was a lot of russia defensive crap going around yesterday.

          It annoyed me because every time anything was raised about the actual effect on how we should act, then it was immediately diverted off into RT speak.

        • lprent 4.1.1.2

          Like you say, there’s quite a time lag at play with regards the public getting any measure of detailed info on intelligence community shenanigans. That’s absolutely no excuse to run with wild unsubstantiated claims from anonymous sources that someone may have told someone else a thing about a something that we have no idea exists or if it does, what it might be.

          And there we completely disagree. Effectively you are arguing that we do nothing because we don’t know absolutely what happened or is going to happen.

          For instance if we used that as a criteria for discussion then we’d never talk about climate change. No one has ever actually seen it happen because the timescales are too great. But the potential costs of not doing anything are too high to not make decisions based on probabilities. For that matter labour law legislation carries exactly the same levels of unknown risks.

          In fact in politics and science and damn near anything else I don’t know of anything that carries the level of certainty that you seem to be after. After all even with physics we know that the current apparent ‘laws’ that govern physical matter and energy were probably quite different in the past and are likely to be different in the future (basically if you want certainty then never read any cosmology).

          Yet you seem to think that intelligence work is different somehow? WTF! And why?

          Personally I look at the risk levels between our intelligence operations and what looks very much like a breach of trust by one of our intelligence partners because of someone who looks to me like a childish dickhead. I want to know that the issue is being dealt with responsibly from our side. I’d also like it to be dealt with preemptively rather than to wait around until after Trump or his minions release all of the phone calls and emails from leftie activists (just to take a random example).

          And having diversions into discussions about irrelevant twaddle isn’t going to assuage that desire.

          • Bill 4.1.1.2.1

            If a claim of an action can be substantiated to some degree or other, then run with it. If the veracity of a claim can be inferred from other known stuff, then run with it.

            If the person or persons making a claim are utterly unknown and they can offer not a skerrick of fuck all beyond their finger pointing to underscore what they say, then nah.

            And btw, I’m not pointing out that it’s bullshit to run with something because “we don’t know absolutely what happened”. I’m saying it’s bullshit because we absolutely do not know what happened.

            Throw on top of that the obvious existence of people peddling agendas and even some of the more incurious of numb-skulls would be making some level of judgement call based on the likelihood of there simply being an agenda in play.

            Or so I’d have thought. Seems though, that you and others want, or are willing, to uncritically accept something as true. Which…whatever.

            btw – did you really just claim in your comment that the laws of physics are mutable?!

            • lprent 4.1.1.2.1.1

              I’m saying it’s bullshit because we absolutely do not know what happened.

              What I am saying is that there are a lot of things that we work with not because they have happened, but because the risk of them happening is what is important. Certainty be damned because it is usually not relevant to working on possible issues. It is the uncertainty that is the problem.

              For instance there is a hell of a lot of extra work gone into buildings and roads because of the risk of earthquakes, floods and even snow, wind or very heavy rain happening. At the time when the work is being done then none of those things are happening. Clearly because building usually doesn’t happen when any of those are happening.

              In this case there is uncertainty if Trump released third party intelligence compared to the prior presumption that wouldn’t happen. Any good intelligence person would have to reassess the risk based on the increased level of uncertainty. It is a standard part of ANY risk assessment.

              FFS: This is pretty basic to most jobs. For instance I have to do this every time that I get strange results out of the hardware and software on the gear I am developing or have developed. In fact I am doing it right now chasing the strange result setting a configuration.

              btw – did you really just claim in your comment that the laws of physics are mutable?!

              Really a topic for another post. But..

              Of course physics is mutable over time, distance, and observation. Offhand I can’t think of much that you could say is not mutable unless you want to add a whole lot of conditions about the reference frame about time, region, velocity and how deep the local gravity dimple is.

              Sometime have a look at what is required to explain the big bang (inflation – which looks like it happened) or steady state (how exactly do we get matter and energy popping in – which looks like we didn’t have).

              But I was dealing with a more basic level than that. Very little science is very certain. All of it is probabilities rather than certainties.

              Physics doesn’t exactly explain happens past the event horizon of a black hole, or the interesting quirks of quantum theory like quantum coupling or zero point energy that are both theoretically possible and increasingly appear to be experimentally probable.

              Even such basics such as how gravity operates are currently largely theory and are only really based on local observation (ie within about a light centuries) because when we go past that we’re peering too far back in time when the certainties of the physical rules we are assuming that we are looking at are less probable.

              However science compared to a large number of other assertions like politics or religion tends to be pretty accurate within a constrained limit because it is widely tested. Of course we really can’t test it a lot because we are a bit constrained in terms of time and space.

              But anyone who is actually trained in science (like I was in my BSc) are acutely aware of the limits of certainty and that science is based on constrained observations and a whole lot of theory over time and space.

    • One Two 4.2

      missing the point….probably compromised sources”

      The salient point is that not a single commentator/author/mod on this site has the first clue what the underlying event’s are..

      • lprent 4.2.1

        ..has the first clue what the underlying event’s are..

        Who really cares apart from the citizens of the US and those who want to go there?

        The reality is that there is a president there who appears to not respect the security of information being passed to them by 3rd parties like NZ. Trump’s response so far is rather explicitly that because he can do it legally then nothing else matters.

        For this country I don’t think that is acceptable and that in the view of that attitude we should change how we share information with the US.

        Is that so hard to understand that you can’t wrap your wee mind around it?

        • Bill 4.2.1.1

          No. Trumps response so far has been that he didn’t pass on sensitive information – that he only passed on info that was pertinent to a possible terrorist attack.

          Can he declassify info? Apparently. Has he? Apparently not.

          Are Israel okay with the intelligence relationship? Apparently.

          Has a plot to bring down a Russian airliner been averted? Possibly.

          Does the US take the info it wants from NZ spying activities or is it given? The way Five Eyes is set up (vague memories of Snowden stuff) it’s taken.

          • lprent 4.2.1.1.1

            And you trust what Trump says?

            What does Israel attitudes have to do with us?

            The treaty arrangement is that we allow them to take whatever they want within the agreement. It will also allow us to vary the conditions because no country makes completely open ended treaties.

            The question is that bearing in mind there is an probably an issue with a White House leaker who will probably be there for 3.5-7.5 years – shouldn’t we change that agreement.

            There is fuckall we can do about having Trump in the White House. That is up to the US. So how about concentrating on NZ where we do have an ability to change things…

            • Bill 4.2.1.1.1.1

              An unknown person accused Trump of being a sheep-shagger (essentially) and offered no proof of that being the case. Trump denies it. It’s not about believing him or trusting him, it’s about the accuser offering up some fucking credible and tangible ‘something’ beyond the mere sound of their own accusation.

              The treaty arrangement is…and you accused me of being naive!

              Why is there probably a White House leaker? No-one who was present at the meeting has made any kind of claim about anything untoward being said or offered up.

              You think NZ has the ability to change (presumably) it’s intelligence services relationships with the US. I don’t think so. It’s a master and servant relationship – not one of equals.

              • McFlock

                Unknown to us, not unknown to WaPo. And WaPo concealed some details and identites for (if the story is true) very good reasons.

                Yes, it could be completely fabricated. But that is significantly less likely with WaPo than it is with either the trump regime, fox news, or reddit.

                So really, we have a “X said, but Y said” situation. X generally tries to tell the truth, has built a commercial reputation on telling the truth, and while it has had a few failures to do so or has exagerrated the truth on occassion, it’s usually pretty reliable.

                Y is a narcissistic pathological liar, and the allegation is perfectly consistent with Y’s known behaviour.

                I can understand a certain amount of scepticsm or a “wait to see if we see more” approach, but it’s not a random and extreme allegation that came out of a vacuum.

              • lprent

                No-one who was present at the meeting has made any kind of claim about anything untoward being said or offered up.

                And that is an interesting point.

                Basically what you are arguing is that WaPo didn’t have a source. Curiously enough that would be a cause for the security apparatus to execute warrants for iff the executive said that ut didn’t happen. That obviously hasn’t happened.

                The wording in tbe last few days from Trump, McMaster and Spicer was unusually precise in what they said and what they answered.

                It never says that what WaPo alleged didn’t happen. What they carefully say is essentially that no classified information was communicated. Which is technically correct because Trump said it and it was essentially declassified as he would have spoken it.

                What was pretty weird about that meeting was also (from memory of the news reports at the time) was that the audience didn’t have the usual type of people in it from state and the intel side.

                But as I pointed out earlier. That is all irrelevant to our decisions. That the issue has been raised about Trumps handling of 3rd party Intel is sufficient for us to examine what we entrust to the US.

                • Bill

                  Basically what you are arguing is that WaPo didn’t have a source.

                  No. I’m saying (have said over and over) that beyond telling us they were not present at the meeting, they are not providing any information about their sources .

                  That means we can’t evaluate those sources or the information they are providing.

                  In cases where sources cannot be revealed, the information presented is usually verifiable. But we don’t have that in this case.

                  You’re willing to accept it all as gospel because “Washington Post”? Seriously?

                  You don’t think the Washington Post is ever fed baseless or dodgy stories to run for the sake of propaganda – and that they do that willingly? You haven’t hesitated to wonder why not one of the liberal msm that ran with the Washington Post story on their front pages asked or wondered about the Washington Post’s sources?

                  First fucking rule of journalism in the absence of any actual evidence I’d have thought – y’know, who is saying whatever and why might they be saying whatever.

  5. Tinfoilhat 5

    “There’s a power struggle going on within the US establishment. It’s kind of beyond me why some people are so keen to pick sides – to jump on bandwagons. Maybe they achieve a sense of gratification or something from running with a kind of liberal mob rule that stokes their hatred of Trump?”

    🙄

    • lprent 5.1

      And how does that affect debate about passing information from our intelligence gatherers to the leaker of the free world?

  6. Anne 6

    Over and above the well known symptoms of narcissism are the six behavioural signs below:

    1) Highly reactive to criticism.
    2) Underneath the self-adulation and sense of entitlement they have low self esteem.
    3) Inordinately self righteous and defensive.
    4) React to contrary view-points with anger and rage.
    5) Project onto others qualities, traits and behaviours they can’t- or won’t – accept in themselves.
    6) Poor interpersonal boundaries.

    Trump has exhibited all six behaviours in their most toxic form in the past week alone!

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evolution-the-self/201311/6-signs-narcissism-you-may-not-know-about

    Bill is right about one thing: We’re between the devil and the deep blue sea. Get rid of the “toxic” narcissist and we have the “nutty” fundamentalist tea-party Christian to contend with.

    As a non religious person, all I can say is God help us!

    • lprent 6.1

      Oh I agree that he is right about the Trump / Pence / House – because of the nature of US politics.

      However what my question is is quite different. What do we do about it in terms of our long term program of intelligence sharing with the US. For that matter with other ties to that state?

      • marty mars 6.1.1

        We do nothing like we always do.

        The Euro capitalist cultural connection won’t break easily if at all. Remember at our end of the intelligence chain is the tick from dipton – oh dear we’re fucked.

      • Anne 6.1.2

        What do we do about it in terms of our long term program of intelligence sharing with the US…

        It’s interesting to note that Andrew Little drew immediate attention to the question when responding to the latest development yesterday. He noted NZ might have to reform their processes of information sharing in light of the Trump regime. He declined to comment on what he might do as prime-minister which was the correct response in light of Trump’s behaviour and excesses.

        All English was prepared to say was… it’s got nothing to do with us (or words to that effect) which is nonsense. As members of the 5 Eyes fraternity, it has everything to do with us.

        Thanks lprent for an illuminating post.

        • lprent 6.1.2.1

          I didn’t see that from Little. But I’m damn glad that someone in our media or parliament is raising the question.

  7. Ad 7

    Lyn you will particularly enjoy the new story that Comey wrote a memo detailing a meeting between himself and Trump in which Trump directly requested that the investigation against Flynn be stopped:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/james-comey-memo-trump_us_591b6e8de4b0a7458fa3f31e?ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009

    Just hitting the MSM now.

    Comey’s paper trail on his Trump meetings and calls will I am sure be as good as any senior bureaucrats’.

  8. Ad 8

    Just hitting the media now: Trump requested Comey stop the investigation into Flynn.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/james-comey-memo-trump_us_591b6e8de4b0a7458fa3f31e?ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009

  9. adam 9

    Leaving aside the use of intelligence gathering outside of a war, and the moral implications that has.

    Leaving aside that historically, leaders have chose to ignore intelligence. Thinking Stalin and the German invasion.

    Leaving aside the situation inside the USA. Trump is an Idiot, and that Pence gives me nightmares.

    New Zealand, has no choice, but to keep gathering information and pass it on. That is the essence of the 5 eyes.

    As for the bases we have here, are in at least one case, is maned by personal of the NSA. How many others have staff who are out side the GCSB and indeed foreign nationals working for their respective agencies – we do not know?

    We have at lease two USA bases in NZ, so we have no choice.

    Whilst it might be nice to think we could walk away from this, it is never going to happen. We are so tied into the programme we just have to tip our caps and go yes sir, becasue that is the club we are signed up to.

    If the NZ public wanted to go neutral, and God knows it’s a position I would support. It would mean a real break with the USA, that in this political environment would bring not only political, but economic costs.

    • McFlock 9.1

      yep. Sadly, our safest course is probably just to keep passing stuff on – not that we really filter stuff from the bases, anyway. With the proviso that anything they choose to pass back to us might have already been burned by the vapid bluster of a septugenarian adolescant.

      Not that they told us shit about Rainbow Warrior, but they might have passed on something useful in days gone by.

      I suppose the interesting quandary would be if our folk in harm’s way actually cultivated a high-level source in a Taliban or terrorist group.

      Would we pass on full details about the fruits of that source, or just snippets, or even just shut up and hope the yanks never found out we knew the IEDs were there, because the source was delivering more information that kept our troops safe and we couldn’t trust the yanks to keep the source a secret?

      • Bill 9.1.1

        No quandary. As soon as any communication is made about any such supposed quandary, the US has the information. Well, if there’s any electronic communication made.

        So short of using couriers and/or carrier pigeons…

        Also. Let’s assume just for a sec that NZ did deliberately withhold info from the US and the US then got wind of that fact. What you reckon as to the repercussions? And then, knowing there’d be repercussions if info was withheld, what are the odds of that ever even crossing the mind of NZ intelligence?

        • McFlock 9.1.1.1

          If our armed forces can’t even manage non-trivial encryption, they wouldn’t pick up the intelligence in the first place.

          Anyway, repercussions: standard military relations and diplomatic fare. Not providing air cover in a timely manner. Not aiding in logistics. Not voting our way in UN.

          As for the oods of witholding crossing NZ’s mind, it depends entirely on how many NZ soldiers you think they’d be prepared to sacrifice. Given the media prominence when our soldiers die one at a time, even a single large attack would drastically change the government’s priorities. And then the intelligence folk need to worry about the link between their carelessness with sources and those deaths.

          So yeah, I don’t think it would be an outright rubber stamp to just burn the source by handing intel over to the yanks.

          • Bill 9.1.1.1.1

            Thinking repercussions would be more likely of an economic variety – y’know, hit people/countries where it hurts. Not that it will happen – NZ like other ‘club members’ are master’s well behaved and generally grateful little servants.

            • McFlock 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah, maybe some of the old “oh, this case of crayfish looks odd, we’d better delay at customs the entire $200k worth for a week until they’re all good and smelly” treatment too. I doubt formal sanctions though – too much paperwork.

              Grateful servants are one thing, but it takes a special kind to slit their own throat for their master. If they had a major source who was regularly saving NZ lives with good intelligence, I’m not sure NZ would arbitrarily hand over that source to the yanks to be given to putin who might or might not be co-operating with the Taliban at some level.

              Now I’m not actually opposed to the Russian move as such because I suspect they’re actually doing it the way the yanks should have donein the first place (as in deal with each Taliban group on its own terms and steer clear of the nuttier ones), especially if they’re focusing more on humanitarian and infrastructure aid rather than “here are some new guns to play with”.

              The trouble is that it provides a chain of motives for the identity of a source saving NZ lives to end up being outed to the source’s colleagues, who might be angry in a very pointy way.

              • Bill

                You do know that the Taliban tried on numerous occasions to hand Bin Laden over to the US before 9/11? Problem was, the US at that point didn’t ‘recognise’ the Taliban as the legit government – fuck, they even had him in court and asked the US to provide proof of involvement in embassy bombings so they could add it to charges and wash their fucking hands of him. And the US sent them….wait for it….a tape recording of a 60 Minutes programme! Second problem was that the yanks were really stupid at reading between the lines of what the Taliban were telling them with regards Bin Ladens whereabouts and security at any given time. The third problem was that even when the Taliban tried to extradite him through Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabia wouldn’t allow it.

                Anyway. I digress.

                • McFlock

                  Yeah, pretty much.

                  But then I also know that the Taliban are a much looser arrangement of local power structures than in most other parts of the world. Some are in nutbar territory, some just go with the flow to keep their people safe and would have flipped if the yanks were any good at empire. Can’t build good roads, either.

                  Hence why I’m not immediately all “what da fuk” at Russian involvement with some Taliban groups.

  10. bwaghorn 10

    trump to putin
    ‘i’ve got a secret but you mustn’t tell anyone ‘

    of course we should stop telling the fuckers anything till they turf the cunning idiot to the curb.

  11. UncookedSelachimorpha 11

    I wonder how Trump’s supporters will put a positive spin on this one?

    Personally I think we should already be extremely wary of intelligence cooperation with the US – and should avoid military cooperation entirely. With the US we are getting in bed with a country that tortures and without legal process kills and detains (and that was under Obama!).

    His support for waterboarding and killing the families of militants is already reason enough to question any cooperation – and not keeping secrets makes cooperation just ridiculous! With friends like that, who needs enemies.

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    Before Jacingrant There Was Gracinda: Grant Robertson and his 2014 running mate, Jacinda Ardern. She stood at his side: loyal and obliging, as she had ever been. The media dubbed this duo “Gracinda” – a sort of political “Brangelina”. The other young people who worked alongside Robertson were also ambitious ...
    15 hours ago
  • Simon Bridges: the 15 March Christchurch massacre and winning at any cost
    . . Just when you thought Simon Bridges couldn’t sink any lower – he has. After the March 15th  Christchurch terror attack, the (current) Leader of the National Party issued strong committments to support urgently needed gun law reform; “We will be ready and prepared to be constructive and to ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Only the least intelligent students, with bad parents, will attend the nonsense climate strike
    We all know that bad parents simply don’t care about their children’s education. Most truants have loser parents, and grow up to be involved with crime, or in low paid employment usually like their parents. The nonsense so-called “climate strike” coming up will be attended mostly by the least intelligent ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    2 days ago
  • Professional Internet Trolls being used to push manmade climate change lies
    Is the terrorist Organisation Greenpeace and the loony Green parties around the World hiring professional internet trolls? I have noticed a trend lately where if you post research, news articles or even comments that show the manmade climate change scam to be just that, you are immediately attacked, often within ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Strike!
    Today is the first day of the global climate strike. Led by schoolkids, people all around the world are going to protest to demand action on climate change. New Zealand isn't doing it till next Friday (join us!), but if you want to get active early, there's plenty to do ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: Squandering our opportunity?
    The Herald has a story today about the 400 MW of wind power currently under construction. Good news, right? Except that none of it is being driven by policy (instead, its about replacing Contact Energy's Taranaki Combined Cycle gas-fired power plant, due to shut down in 2022), and most of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Protect The King!
    To Protect and Serve: When the Prime Minister finds herself enmeshed in the coils of a full-blown political scandal, her colleagues and party comrades have only one priority: to release her as swiftly – and with as little lasting injury – as possible. Is this what Jacinda Ardern’s colleagues and ...
    3 days ago
  • The rot at the top.
    When military leaders cover up and lie to elected civilian authorities, the foundation of democratic civil-military relations is undermined because it is those authorities who are entrusted to hold the military accountable to the public that they mutually serve. But this is only true if civilian political authorities take their ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    3 days ago
  • Challenging the voting age in court
    The Make It 16 campaign to lower the voting age is launching this afternoon, and they have already announced plans to challenge the law in court:The campaign, named "Make it 16" will launch at Parliament on Friday, with plans to take their case to the High Court, testing the rights ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Israel’s elections herald a long siesta
    by Daphna Whitmore The long years of Netanyahu’s reign are drawing to an end. For years he has epitomized reactionary zionism as he oversaw hundreds of thousands of Jewish settlers seize land in the West Bank. There are now 700,000 settlers, putting an end to the myth that Israel was ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Petrol companies promise prices will come back down once peace is restored to the Middle East
    BP, Z and Mobil all insist that petrol price hikes are temporary, “in a very literal sense.” The nation’s major petrol providers are trying to allay customer fears over prices, promising that they’ll move to lower them again “immediately” when the Middle East is returned to its formerly peaceful state. ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    3 days ago
  • All Blacks unveil boat for Rugby World Cup 2019
    South African coach Rassie Erasmus says he has no idea what they’re going to do about the boat. In a highly anticipated press conference this afternoon, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has finally unveiled the team’s boat for its Rugby World Cup 2019 campaign. In a press conference that went ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    3 days ago
  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
    The Operation Burnham inquiry continued to question senior NZDF staff today, and their shoddy coverup over their knowledge of civilian casualties continue to fall apart. If you recall, first, we were asked to believe that it was all a series of "mistakes and errors": a senior officer with multiple degrees ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
    The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) had part of its committee stage yesterday. its a generally tedious bill about the nitty-gritty of local government reorganisation. But it includes a clause making the Local Government Commission subject to the Ombudsmen Act, and hence the OIA. Great! Except of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    4 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    4 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    6 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    6 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    6 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    7 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    1 week ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago

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