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Land of the long white wash

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, April 4th, 2017 - 89 comments
Categories: accountability, afghanistan, bill english, military, war - Tags: , , , ,

(Alas the title is not mine, take a bow Finlay MacDonald)

As widely predicted, Bill English has chosen to endorse what looks like an NZDF coverup with respect to Operation Burnham. His excuses are an insult to our intelligence:

There will be no inquiry into allegations about SAS raids after advice from the “independent” Chief of Defence Force and video footage backing that up, Prime Minister Bill English has announced.

Asked how Keating – a former commanding officer of the NZSAS – was in any way independent, English said Keating was not involved in the raids, dubbed Operation Burnham.

“The CDF is independent. He wasn’t involved in the operation. He has access to video of the actual operation itself, along with all the planning that went into it, the review afterwards by ISAF. We trust that process.

So the commander of the Defence Force is “independent” of it. Just like the All Blacks coach is “independent” of the team. And the PM is “independent” of the government. Please.

“There’s not any real contest over the facts other than the book…which has got them wrong…it looks to be in some cases a wildly inaccurate piece of journalism.”

Here English is trying to use one acknowledged error in the book (different map coordinates) as an excuse to ignore the whole thing. There are more errors and inconsistencies in the NZDF’s many versions of events (once again see Selwyn Manning’s rigorous analysis on Kiwipolitico). Furthermore the facts are supported by sources other than the book, e.g. the New York Times.

English’s excuses are also an insult to our integrity:

When asked about what happened to three-year-old Fatima who was one of the six civilians allegedly killed in the raid, Mr English says “You’d have to ask the authors of the book.”

Right from the bottom of the barrel.

For further summaries of English’s position, and also Hager’s response, see The Spinoff. Hager:

“But, most of all, Bill English has just ensured that the issue will continue to boil and fester. It is not going to go away until it is properly addressed.”

The only way of addressing the issue now is to take it out of English’s hands:

Afghan raids: Evidence of cover-up, lawyers say

A senior lawyer says there is credible evidence the New Zealand Defence Force covered up civilian deaths at the hands of the country’s elite soldiers.

Ms Manning, who previously represented Algerian refugee Ahmed Zaoui, said she, Mr Harrison and Mr McLeod would be representing the residents of the two raided villages.

Otago University Law Professor Andrew Geddis said if the government declined to launch the inquiry, the next step could be to head to the International Criminal Court. …

No Right Turn:

The question is why the Prime Minister listened solely to them. Shouldn’t he also have consulted Crown Law and MFAT, or indeed his own lawyer, before ruling anything out? After all, New Zealand is a party to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, which permits investigation and prosecution of New Zealand troops and officials if our own government fails to do so. And by collaborating in NZDF’s coverup, English has effectively just made himself a party to the crime, and opened himself up to prosecution in The Hague…

I guess we’ll be hearing from the villagers’ lawyers one way or the other before too long.


https://twitter.com/MacFinlay/status/848770385059340289

89 comments on “Land of the long white wash ”

  1. One Anonymous Bloke 1

    Utterly shameful. I actually expected more from Double Dipton. Memo to self – corrupt people can be counted upon to be corrupt.

    • srylands 1.1

      How exactly would an inquiry have worked? Would Hager have provided the commission of inquiry with the names and details of all his sources? Would the inquiry officials travel to Afghanistan, chasing down villagers to interview?.

      With those constraints the inquiry would of course conclude that the accusations are a fantasy.

      • red-blooded 1.1.1

        It’s not up to Hagar and Stevenson to prove their case; it’s up to the defence force to prove theirs (or it should be, anyway). Plus, it is possible for evidence to be given confidentially in a closed court when necessary. Not all information presented to an independent inquiry has to be fully public.

        And yes, it is perfectly reasonable to expect that part of the investigation would involve travel to Afghanistan to interview affected people.

        • Rightly or wrongly 1.1.1.1

          Ok, so lets have a think about that for a moment.

          The inquiry chief (perhaps a retired judge) would hop on a plane and head over to Afghanistan.

          Once there he/she would ring up the local (outlawed) Taliban leader and ask for permission to fly into the village and talk to the villagers.

          Once there they then interview the villagers who are under the control of the extremist, jihadist, Taliban (who no doubt are listening in) and ask them to tell the truth about something that happened 7 years ago.

          Oh and mention that if they tell a story involving nasty NZ soldiers being mean they could be in for free $$$$$.

          Yup I’m sure you would end up with a wonderful tale of fiction about all sorts of atrocities that the evil infidel committed.

          Just won’t be anywhere near the truth.

          Just have to face a hard reality that this time Hager and co over egged and under delivered.

          • In Vino 1.1.1.1.1

            I think we can assume that you got that fanciful load of specious waffle utterly wrongly. Try to be sensible, rather than indulge your wishful bias. You obviously think that because you see Taliban as evil (like the Nazis) it is OK for us to act like the Dirty Dozen, and do even worse crimes against the evil enemy.
            You are a wishful thinker – the wonderful tale of fiction is all yours.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.2

        To a large extent, Hager’s source is Stephenson. No-one expects you to be capable of organising anything other than expensive sophistry for right wing clients.

      • Keith 1.1.3

        So has Hager and more importantly Jon Stephenson who contributed most of the book just made it all up because they had nothing better to do? Or because they thought there’s nothing better than being sued by the military and or those named? Yeah that’s a good idea!

        And what that either have written in the past has been proven wrong versus the absolute sheer dishonesty that this government has shown as an example to all its “CEO”‘s. And the military in Stephensons case.

        Yes, it’s all just a fantasy, keep telling yourself that.

        But what have you read in this book have you read that makes you think this is a fantasy?

      • WILD KATIPO 1.1.4

        ” Would the inquiry officials travel to Afghanistan, chasing down villagers to interview?.”
        —————————————-

        Skype , and an interpreter .

        This is the year 2017 , not 1717.

        • inspider 1.1.4.1

          Stephenson says their is no phone access in the area so that’s not a goer (which also makes me wonder how Deborah Manning gets new instructions overnight from her villager clients)

          • WILD KATIPO 1.1.4.1.1

            Simple answer to that is bus witnesses into an area that does have Skype.

            Quite simple , really.

            Either that or let the Hague take over.

            I’m sure they wouldn’t have any such technical difficulty’s.

            • inspider 1.1.4.1.1.1

              It’s a multi hour walk to the nearest road and I’m not aware of the reliability of the bus timetable in Taliban controlled areas.

              • Are you sure you cannot come up with a better excuse?

                Or did the Double Dipper suggest that one as well?…..

                Seems it was OK to go in guns blazing and have a right royal shoot em up at women and children though , wasn’t it…

            • greg 1.1.4.1.1.2

              new Zealand has become a tin pot little pacific nation with a corrupt crooked dishonest government with no sense of justice its time to for the Hague to take over let the nats try the crooked lies at the Hague lets see how far they get

            • inspider 1.1.4.1.2.1

              Are you saying they have these or are you proposing they be dropped into Taliban territory by NZ drone service?

              • Funny how there seemed to be no problem at all with Afghan govt officials recording the deaths of civilians and administering death certificates in the same area though,…. funny that.

                Kinda proves that A ) its not quite so ‘ unreachable’ as you RWNJ’s would conveniently like to make out , – and B ) that witness testimony CAN be procured – even if that meant transport to an area where they can give that testimony.

                Good enough to fly in military helicopters to murder civilians- good enough to fly em out to testify.

              • Anno1701

                ” proposing they be dropped into Taliban territory by NZ drone service?”

                feeble…..

      • Tricldrown 1.1.5

        The ex SAS soldiers who provided the information are prepared to give evidence.

  2. Keith 2

    I think the National Party’s polling results must have taken longer than usual. Then the focus group work to polish this turd has clearly taken even longer.

    Pity English is so wedded to the Key governments model of self serving rather than clearing the air on this once and for all. His actions certainty don’t improve anything.

    • Sanctuary 2.1

      “…I think the National Party’s polling results must have taken longer than usual. Then the focus group work to polish this turd has clearly taken even longer…”

      And another decision which confirms the political mediocrity that is Bill English. Let’s imagine how Key would have handled this – he would have ummed and ahhed until the polling and focus groups came back, which would have told him that his base supported the military and the middle class didn’t care and he would not lose much politically by not holding an inquiry. He would have then announced an inquiry anyway, to neuter the left and assuage the centre, then chicken strapped it with his appointments and the terms of reference and kicked it’s report safely down the road to after the election when all the heat would have been drawn from the issue.

      Bill English however is a knee jerk reactionary Tory snob whose instinct is to sooner die in a ditch than give so much as an inch to lesser sorts like Hager.

    • greg 2.2

      National Party’s polling results and voters should not be a factor if war crimes have been committed nats are big on throwing winz clients in jail but when it comes to the highest levels of state sponsored offending war crimes /crimes against humanity the thing that the Nazis hanged for at Nuremberg oh no its perfectly OK to murder a 3 year old child if you are a tory
      there really sick fuckers who belong at the Hague

  3. Cinny 3

    Rachel Smalley makes a good point in the Herald this morning…

    “Right now we’re in the midst of a two-month inquiry into why we shot a dog at Auckland Airport.

    A dog that was running amok, and held up 16 flights.

    We’re investigating a dog’s death.

    Come on, New Zealand.

    Should we not be investigating how a 3-year-old girl was shot dead while in her mother’s arms in a small village in Afghanistan?

    What does that say about us? About you and me? Why are we horrified by shooting dead a dog, but not the killing of an Afghani toddler?

    Answer that question for me, and tell me again that we shouldn’t have an inquiry”

    • Keith 3.1

      No dog was shot and if it was it was then we blame the Americans. But anyway that was another very similar airport 2 km’s away, in a village called Auckland.

      We’ve shown the Prime Minister a hastily whipped up video as proof, he’s a bit slow so he didn’t notice the King Kong set we used. Neither did Barry Soper. He believes us too, or so he said over port and cigars after dinner with us!

    • Penny Bright 3.2

      New Zealand – now some sort of half-assed, pro-USA military dictatorship, led by useless, gutless Prime Minister Bill English who is obviously not ‘fit for duty’?

      I think so.

      What would PM Bill English do if three year old DEAD Fatima was his little girl?

      What a bloody disgrace!

    • ianmac 3.3

      Yes Cinny. A hard choice Dead dog Versus Dead child? Mmmm. Hard choice.
      Well we are dog lovers and the dead girl was a foreigner. If she hadn’t been running away like an insurgent she would have been OK. So her own fault.
      Yea. Lets stick with the dog.

  4. dv 4

    So when are we going to see a defamation case by the NZDF against Hagar et al?

    • ianmac 4.1

      Yes dv. After all Hager has apparently defamed our NZDF big time. Written a book full of errors. Simple. Keating should sue!
      Why not?
      Then the NZDF would have to defend with facts. OH darn.

    • srylands 4.2

      The NZDF cannot bring a case for defamation in any circumstances.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 4.2.1

        …and if they could, truth is an absolute defence against defamation charges.

        What would be interesting would be for the troops involved (the ones who gave evidence to Stephenson, for example) to tell their stories to other news media and challenge the people who lied and covered up directly.

      • WILD KATIPO 4.2.2

        Just like they cant afford to tell the truth yet still furnished a video.

        And for all the NZ public know, – it could have been a tourist adventure film exhorting us all to see the sights around Afghanistan.

      • dv 4.2.3

        Oh thats right DZDF settled out of court on a defamation case brought by Jon Stephenson.

  5. Tui 5

    this proves that nasty natz are bunch of misogynists!!! diff story if it had been cis males murdered!!!

    ~ tui

    • roy cartland 5.1

      I think you still give them too much credit – wealthy, white, English-speaking cis-males maybe…

  6. Carolyn_nth 6

    This quote from Bill English in the Spinoff article linked in the post:

    On reports of civilian deaths: “There hasn’t been evidence that civilians were killed. The allegations in the book I think you’d have to discount because they appear to be about different places and different people. If there was further evidence then the CDF would be obliged to investigate.”

    If this is the conclusions English has drawn from comparing the NZDF (selective) evidence and that of the Hit and Run book, then English’s judgement is seriously in doubt. Is his comprehension ability capable of making a decision about the allegations and whether an inquiry is needed?

    Or has English just made up facts to suit his agenda?

    • Anne 6.1

      … has English just made up facts to suit his agenda?

      That is exactly what he has done. I tried to find the link to the TV1 news item where he repeats the crap but it seems to have disappeared. I might add English looked drawn and old in the clip. Methinks he’s been under a lot of pressure in the past week. I’m not defending him. He’s proving to be a gutless wonder.

      Could it be the Americans? There is an authoritarian and despotic regime over there now and I would not put it past some of their hierarchy flexing their muscles and issuing vague threats if NZ holds an independent inquiry. I’m now half way through the book (taking my time to read it slowly and carefully) and I have the impression the Apache helicoptor crews flew in to the attack site with all guns blazing – like a bunch of cowboys hunting down the hapless Indians just for the fun of it.

      • Carolyn_nth 6.1.1

        I suspect the US involvement may be part of the issue.

        Gordon Campbell’s article todqay on the English decision is worth a read.

        Gordon Campbell on Shifty Bill’s Last Stand

        Campbell says none of the journos at English’s announcement were buying his line:

        From then on, things became decidedly surreal. There didn’t seem to be a single member of the press gallery who was buying it for a moment.

        So what is going on here? The claim that there has already been an independent official investigation is patently absurd. So are the claims by English that the book has been ‘discredited.’ The only (minor) error detected in the book to date has been with regard to the exact geographical co-ordinates given for the villages where the attacks took place. These quibbles about geography – which the NZDF and English are using as a life raft to sail off to safety – pale into insignificance when compared to the litany of errors made down the years by the same NZDF (especially regarding the shifting NZDF position on civilian casualties) whose current claims we are being told to take on trust.

        Clearly, a political decision has been made by the English government that (a) very few people care about this issue and (b) very few people will read the book and (c) the sort of people who read books written by Nicky Hager and Jon Stephenson are never going to vote for National anyway. In 2014, the government pursued the same strategy with respect to Hager’s last book Dirty Politics. That is, claim repeatedly that it is fake news, rely heavily on public indifference and treat anyone who thinks otherwise as politically expendable. If they’re dead they’re insurgents and if they believe Hager, they’re dead to us. QED.

        At this point, the main hope of daylight will be if/whether a legal action (for compensation) on behalf of the villagers does proceed.

        • Anne 6.1.1.1

          He has just repeated the blatant lies in answer to a question from Little where he has parliamentary privilege and can’t be sued.

          He claims that the SAS soldiers were in a different village altogether to the one in the book and that none of those things happened in the village our soldiers were at. In other words he’s saying nothing in the book is true.

          Actually I thought Little’s questioning was a bit weak. He never contradicted any of English’s lies and so much of it could have been easily countered if he’d read the book. I suspect he hasn’t read it either.

          • mary_a 6.1.1.1.1

            @ Anne (6.1.1.1) … perhaps Andrew Little was somewhat distracted at the moment, by the Hagaman court case going on at the Wellington High court, where he’s being sued for defamation, despite giving an apology and offering $100,000 reparation.

            I’m waiting for the Natz to give this case an airing as a diversion, with Little and to a lesser extent Jacinda Ardern being involved. No doubt some nasty finger pointing will go on. Anything to take the heat out of English’s shocking no inquiry decision.

            • Anne 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes, I thought of that but I assume the Nats can’t comment until after a verdict has been delivered. Is there a jury or is it being heard by a judge? If its a judge then a finding could be weeks away.

          • ianmac 6.1.1.1.2

            Watched Andrew’s questions and thought they were pretty good. Now English is on the official record.
            How did the little girl get killed?
            She must have been in a different place because the SAS were never in the village stated.
            Once those mis -statements are on record then he is wide open to closer questioning and even ridicule.
            https://www.parliament.nz/en/watch-parliament/ondemand?itemId=180909

            • Anne 6.1.1.1.2.1

              Now English is on the official record.

              True ianmac. I noted there was no questions from any of the other opposition parties, so maybe that was just an agreed token missive to establish the mis-statements for future reference.

              • ianmac

                I thought all the MPs looked depressed/tired. Even Bill’s team seemed disengaged while he was defending his bad decision.

  7. fisiani 7

    Bill English has reviewed the evidence and can see no evidence of a war crime. He cannot order an inquiry every time someone simply makes an allegation. He trusts our Defence Force chief. I wish others would show these informed people some respect.

    • Keith 7.1

      Trouble is this particular National government is not exactly know for its honesty now is it? Nor is the military.

      So how do you respect that?

    • Penny Bright 7.2

      errr….isn’t it a basic principle of natural justice – that you cannot be a judge in your own case?

      So – here we have ‘OUR’ NZ Defence Force effectively acting as judge, jury and arguably ‘executioner’ regarding Operation Burnham and related actions?

      Remind me – who is supposed to be responsible for governing New Zealand?

      The elected Government – led by the Prime Minister, or the unelected NZ Defence Force, led by the Chief of Defence?

      Who’s ‘calling the shots’?

      Literally?

      On what LAWFUL basis?

      • srylands 7.2.1

        Except there is no crime to defend and no charges and no defendant.

        Your analogy is moot.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 7.2.1.1

          If you want to go down that road, as Graeme Edgeler says:

          In New Zealand, such investigations are a matter for the Police, and decisions over whether to prosecute (in the High Court) are ultimately for the Solicitor-General or Crown Prosecutors. Alternatively, allegations against soldiers may be a matter for the Military Police, leading the possibility of trial at a Court Martial. Neither will have much experience investigating war crimes. In the circumstances, I think the Police are better placed in the case.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 7.3

      With all due respect to Bill English, he is not a trained investigator. With all due respect to the NZDF, ask Margaret and Keith Berryman whether it’s wise to take their word for it.

      With all due respect to the SAS troops who gave evidence to John Stephenson, don’t give up lads: we’re going to see this through.

    • Bearded Git 7.4

      Little said on Morning Report this AM he will instigate an enquiry if he is elected as PM. (Yet another reason for Winnie to go with the Labour/Green bloc.)

      • inspider 7.4.1

        Little says he wouldn’t inquire into war crimes. So he agrees with English and he hasn’t even seen the video.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 7.4.1.1

          That would be a job for the Police. Or failing them, the ICC.

          Someone should probably mention that to some interviewers and others who don’t seem to have figured it out.

          • inspider 7.4.1.1.1

            Someone should probably mention that to Little who said the book showed no
            evidence of war crimes. He clearly seems to think he has worked it out.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 7.4.1.1.1.1

              Someone should probably mention to you that Little said:

              There are serious allegations, there is a lack of clarity about the extent of civilian casualties, and for the sake of the Defence Force’s reputation here and abroad, and public confidence in them, we need an independent inquiry…

              I don’t think there’s anything that leaps out and says ‘a war crime has been committed’…

              Which isn’t exactly what you pretended he’d said.

              Honesty seems to be an issue for you and the NZDF. Curious.

              • weka

                Isn’t one of the points of an inquiry to establish what happened, presumably including whether there were war crimes committed?

                (I’m relying to you rather than inspider, because I’d like an honest, informed answer)

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Graeme Edgeler covers the issues pretty well.

                  • weka

                    got a tl;dr?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I’ll try.

                      Among other things, he says that the appropriate investigating authority is the Police, that anyone who thinks they may be charged should make no statements to the inquiry (‘plead the fifth’), and that in the interests of fair trials a lot of evidence at an inquiry would have to be heard in secret.

                      In essence I suppose what would establish a war crime had occurred would be a guilty verdict rather than an inquiry report.

                • inspider

                  You should take care dismissing Andrew Little’s views in such a disparaging way. He’s got experience of the defamation process and might soon need the money

              • inspider

                He said even taking the book at face value war crimes don’t leap out. looks entirely consistent with my reporting of it.

                But then I don’t have access to your curiously accurate transcripts of his >5 min long interview.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  “Curiously accurate”?

                  I listened to the interview. I transcribed some of it. Mad skills eh. For my next trick I will amaze you by boiling an egg.

                  Egg.

        • WILD KATIPO 7.4.1.2

          inspider 7.4.1
          4 April 2017 at 11:41 am
          ” Little says he wouldn’t inquire into war crimes. So he agrees with English and he hasn’t even seen the video.”

          Strange how NONE of us except the affected party’s have ever seen any videos… indeed,… WERE there any videos shown at all ????

          In fact , beside tea and scones , – was the raid even discussed AT ALL ???

          Time for an inquiry .

        • Cinny 7.4.1.3

          Dang outgoing PM English even said that he has not seen the FULL video or read the WHOLE book.

          NZDF and the outgoing PM bring shame on our SAS and their families by not initiating an independent investigation to clear their names. Let alone those killed, who was killed again and why? Who really knows? Anyone? Mhmmmm

          Maybe we will find out more at 2pm today..

          “ANDREW LITTLE to the Prime Minister: Based on the advice he has received from the Defence Force and the Minister of Defence, does he know if any civilians were killed in Operation Burnham; if so, how many?”

    • Ask yourself ‘ who has the most to lose in an inquiry ‘ fisani.

      And the answer isn’t Hager and Stephenson.

      And because of that unsaid and very strong suspicion in the mind of the public , – that in itself demands an inquiry , – if only to properly clear the NZDF and this govt of any doubt of collusion and cover up. If this is something to hide , this course of action is the most logical. If not , – then an inquiry would / should lay to rest any actions of wrongdoing.

      Trying to welch on patriotic fervor under these circumstances wont work in your case , either.

      Your position , like that of this govt is untenable from here on in.

      • RRM 7.5.1

        that unsaid and very strong suspicion in the mind of the public

        Really?

        I’m more politically minded than most of my friends so I’ve canvassed a little bit.

        NOBODY in my household or at my work gives a flying rat’s arse about these allegations. Hager is a legend in his own mind.

        You can insist shit is “untenable” until the cows come home… and your politically correct pals on here will pat you on the back all the way. But so what?

        • WILD KATIPO 7.5.1.1

          OOOOO ,…spoken like a real badarse, eh?

          Nah mate… nothing badarse about condoning killing small 3 year old’s, buddy.

          Other thing, … I noticed you used the term ‘ PC’.

          How quaint.

          Somehow the Hague doesn’t seem to think its ‘ PC’ to conduct an inquiry into war crimes. In fact I think they take that kind of thing ( war crimes ) rather seriously. And I really don’t think they give a lot of time worrying if its ‘ PC’ or not when they are busy pressing charges.

          This isn’t about Hager or Stephenson as much as you would like to try and deflect / divert it into : this is about our NZDF and this govt denying the public of this country AND the victims of that raid in Afghanistan justice.

          Too ‘ PC ‘ for your liking still?

          And btw …. ‘you’ve canvassed’… who ?… some more of your ‘ badarse’ mates who think like you?

          Well I’m confident you must be right then if you’ve ‘ canvassed’… I am so very impressed. I guess that means we should all consult you and your mates in future instead of conducting proper legal inquiry’s.

          Your a joke buddy.

          • RRM 7.5.1.1.1

            *Enquiries
            *You’re

            Badass??!

            Good on ya…

            • WILD KATIPO 7.5.1.1.1.1

              Grammar Nazi much?

              Still deflecting from the issues at hand , I see…

              ” Good on ya…”

              That’s ‘ you ‘ btw… if you want to get all pedantic and keep deflecting.

        • Tricldrown 7.5.1.2

          Angry redneck alert.
          When a redneck gets cornered

    • mary_a 7.6

      @ fisiani (7) … So English in his decision, is also discrediting the statements made by his former colleague and Minister of Defence at the time of the events, who admits there were civilian deaths, calling the raids a “fiasco” under his (Mapp’s) watch!

      Bill English is a liar and a disgrace, like his predecessor John Key. Where is his evidence he viewed the videos of the raids?

      Your final statement …”I wish others would show these informed people some respect.”

      If you are referring to English and Keating et al, then they deserve as much respect as they have shown the victims of the botched raids, through their long term deceitful cover ups and and now whitewash! Absolutely none!

    • s y d 7.7

      Classic fis,
      I bet Keating bought in his personal VHS copy and showed ol’ bill the ride of the valkyries scene from apocolypse now…..all the evidence needed, fully informed.
      They had 50cals and citreons!

    • Draco T Bastard 7.8

      Blinglish is about as informed as a cockroach and he’s most definitely working to protect the National Party from the unlawful death of a child committed under their watch.

    • That’s sort of like saying the police should interview someone accused of murder and if their story and any evidence they present is self-consistent the police should just stop investigating the whole thing because it obviously didn’t happen.

      That’s not how serious allegations are supposed to work. You’re supposed to need independent verification of facts to dismiss them, something the PM hasn’t sought.

    • AB 7.10

      “I wish others would show these informed people some respect”
      Always fascinates me – right-wingers’ craven subservience to established power and authority.

  8. This whole episode is sillier than this in its whole construction.

    In fact I think I think Monty Python was more credible.

    Military Camp Drill – Monty Python – YouTube
    Video for monty python army skit you tube▶ 0:44

  9. RRM 9

    Nicky Hager:

    You have to listen to me! WHY AREN’T YOU LISTENING TO ME?

    [Stamps foot]

    [1 month ban for flaming – weka]

    • I don’t think Nicky Hager is the one doing any foot stamping , just quietly. I would suspect there has been more than enough of that going on in the NZDF offices over the release of this book.

      Nothing to hide, nothing to fear ?

      C’mon , … lets get this inquiry happening now.

      • RRM 9.1.1

        Why?

        Seriously.

        If the result of any inquiry isn’t what Hager and his fans “know” in their little hearts to be true (i.e. some incompetent politician / soldier is at fault, and the others all covered it up for him, all should be sacked or re-educated in room 101 of the Ministry of Love) they’ll just simply dismiss the results as a whitewash, call for another inquiry, etc etc, until the right truth comes out.

        Bill English is right to just kick this into touch now, so he can be decried by the left for conducting a whitewash for a comparatively cheap price…

        • WILD KATIPO 9.1.1.1

          Kicked into touch?

          Hardly.

          So,… lets get this straight… you are suggesting that the SAS members, the Afghan officials AND the parents of Fatima are all lying.

          Yeah.

          Right.

          OK.

    • adam 9.2

      ROFL, the desperate attempt at trolling has begun. Then doubles down to say nothing. RRM don’t change I love reading stupid trolls on this site, and you mate are bloody hilarious.

      Love the whole post truth thing. Me I’m sticking with Blow jobs for the PM from Keating, makes as much sense as your remarks.

  10. Search Results
    Kupu Hou on Twitter: “Tuarākore – spineless. From spine (tuarā) and …
    https://twitter.com/KupuHou/status/826357331487133700

  11. ianmac 11

    I guess that the English brigade believe that hard eyewitness statements/evidence is for now at least, not going to appear to damage his decision. Therefore they expect to ride the wave till it dies down. Weighing the odds.
    With the caveat of course that should any hard evidence appear, he will review. Ha.

  12. RuralGuy 12

    Why the hell would the left pursue this. It’s been polled by both “left and right” and the polling seems to indicate that middle NZ does not agree or believe Hagar or the books claims. The public (right or wrong) want to side with the CDF and the SAS lads. Political parties can either line up for or against our soldiers and will either take a bump or a hit in the polls.

    Its election year, righteous stuff that losses votes should be forgotten and consigned to the dustbin.

    [lprent: “The Left” doesn’t, and as an entity capable of doing a coherent action it is a myth. When you want to ascribe action to an entity, then pick a real one. In this case whoever wrote whatever you are talking about.

    Talk to the people and stop trying to invent mythical people to talk to. Otherwise I eventually ban you for being a dumbarse troll who likes making fake talking points about mythic beasts. But if you are unlucky I will give you some personal attention first. This is your warning – see policy. ]

  13. Penny Bright 13

    CROSS-REFERENCE THE SAS ‘INSURGENT HIT LIST’ WITH THE LAWYERS’ DEAD CIVILIANS LIST!

    Here’s a bit of blinding commonsense.

    Didn’t ‘OUR’ NZ SAS have an (alleged) insurgent ‘hit list’ – with names of those whom they were targeting for Operation Burnham, on 22 August 2010?

    Don’t the above-mentioned lawyers, acting for Afghan villagers have a list of alleged civilians, who were killed during Operation Burnham on 22 August 2010?

    BRAINWAVE!!

    How about ‘cross-referencing’ those two lists?

    If none of those dead villagers match the list of targeted ‘insurgents’ – surely THAT evidence supports an independent inquiry?

    Has the NZDF cross-referenced these two lists?

    Has NZ Prime Minister Bill English?

    If not – why not?

    I’m prepared to offer my services (pro bono) to assist with this exercise.

    It should arguably take no more than ten minutes?

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