web analytics

Our traditional allies

Written By: - Date published: 6:53 pm, July 27th, 2009 - 67 comments
Categories: afghanistan - Tags:

It seems the US want us to commit our elite SAS troops to Afghanistan. I’m not a big fan of the Taliban but I’m not a supporter of occupations either. Morally I think we can supply engineers and the like for reconstruction (assuming that’s what they do). But the SAS has only one purpose and I don’t see any reason we should be sending them to the other side of the globe to kill people.

Of course for the Nat’s it won’t be a moral argument so much as a pragmatic one based on political fallout versus getting those trade dollars flowing:

67 comments on “Our traditional allies”

  1. Tim Ellis 1

    This is just pathetic IB. Labour sent the SAS to Afghanistan. What you’re saying is when Labour does it it’s morally justified, but when National does it it’s for evil motives.

    • Eddie 1.1

      You’re reading what isn’t there again Tim. Irish makes no defence of the deployment under Labour. In case you missed, National is government now. It’s they who make these decisions. Irish is commenting on what lies behind their thinking.

    • No Tim the issue is Keys position on issues when in opposition and then his about turn when In Government. Surely Tim even you can see it is hypocritical to be ranting about NZ being missing in action in Iraq and how it would effect our trading with the US and now when he is in charge, Key wont commit troops in Afganistan.
      Mr Flip Flop in action again, why? Because National have poor policy Key is constantly trying to gage public perception on every issue.

      • Tim Ellis 1.2.1

        Craig, Mr Key made the “missing in action” comment when he had been an MP for less than a year. Mr Goff said a lot of things when he was a backbench MP as well. He said a lot of things when he was a Minister in the fourth labour government that are quite different to his position as opposition leader.

        I find it interesting that Mr Mallard has become the defacto spokesman on this over at red alert. Is Mr Mallard Labour’s foreign affairs spokesoman now? He doesn’t strike me as the most diplomatic of people.

        • BLiP 1.2.1.1

          Before his thinking was polluted by the urusping of democracy and before he learned to guage his words through the filter of focus groups and the batallion of PR specialists, Key actually said what he really meant – that New Zealand was missing in action during the illegal invasion and on-going occupation. Key actively supported the pouring of Kiwi blood into the profit margin of US corporates. Who knows what he really thinks these days as he flip-flops his way through the week.

          And then you attempt to detract from the point of the post with an irrelevant attack on someone you disagree with who is talking about Afghanistan.

          Talk about slippery . . . I’m onto you Ellis.

        • Craig Glen Eden 1.2.1.2

          Stick to the issue Tim. We are not talking about what someone said 18 years ago and its not a miner change we are talking about. We are talking about a guy who is prime minister who has a very bad habit of saying what he thinks people want to hear.
          So 5 years ago he is all ra ra lets go off to war we want a trade deal, now he is oh I don’t think we should help build a police force in Afghanistan thats far to dangerous. The point is Key cant be trusted he leads a party that is policy lite and he runs off at the mouth.

  2. lprent 2

    Don’t be a dickhead Tim. Irish said nothing about Labour, and is on the record as not even supporting them.

    He opposed the deployment when discussing this a few years ago. He opposes it now. You really are getting to be a pathetic mouthpiece fo the nact’s. Why not start using your brain…..

  3. lprent 3

    Incidentially I support sending troops. The only real thing against it is that the US is asking. Hopefully they will stay out of US control because they are ineffective commanders

    • Pascal's bookie 3.1

      I’m a bit concerned that the overall mission, of which we would be a part, is not achievable given various factors, including:

      – The mission is poorly defined. What exactly is the end state supposed to look like? A democratic functioning government? How will increasing kinetic operations against the Pashtun/Taliban achieve that?

      – The Taliban are based primarily within the Pashtun ethnic/cultural group which spans the Durand line. It is not much of a border and Pakistan does not really control their side of it. Containing the conflict to the Afghan side will make it impossible to win, expanding it to Pakistan dangerous.

      – Counter insurgency operations are man power intensive, and there aren’t the men. Doing it without the men will just inflame the situation.

      I think the original “get Osama’ mission was justifiable and I supported it, the ‘overthrow’ the Taliban govt’ one was supposed to be secondary to that. I think the west has largely missed the boat in terms of setting up a new govt. Promised aid wasn’t delivered, the anti opium crusade failed, the ISI is a trouble maker. Etc and so on.

      This is a good read, from someone who has spent a fair bit of time in the area, served in the Brit Army and the diplomatic service after that;

      http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n13/stew01_.html

      Long, but his recommendation at the end is:

      The best Afghan policy would be to reduce the number of foreign troops from the current level of 90,000 to far fewer perhaps 20,000. In that case, two distinct objectives would remain for the international community: development and counter-terrorism. Neither would amount to the building of an Afghan state. If the West believed it essential to exclude al-Qaida from Afghanistan, then they could do it with special forces. (They have done it successfully since 2001 and could continue indefinitely, though the result has only been to move bin Laden across the border.) At the same time the West should provide generous development assistance not only to keep consent for the counter-terrorism operations, but as an end in itself.
      A reduction in troop numbers and a turn away from state-building should not mean total withdrawal: good projects could continue to be undertaken in electricity, water, irrigation, health, education, agriculture, rural development and in other areas favoured by development agencies. We should not control and cannot predict the future of Afghanistan. It may in the future become more violent, or find a decentralised equilibrium or a new national unity, but if its communities continue to want to work with us, we can, over 30 years, encourage the more positive trends in Afghan society and help to contain the more negative.

      I could be down with that, but that’s not on the agenda. It seems at least to me that the plan is to go in comparatively light, and start a war with the Pashtun, but only on the Afghan side of the Durand line, while simultaneously trying to prop up a weak govt and turn it into something Afghanistan hasn’t asked for, and has never had.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        Exactly PB, we can’t enforce a government or even stability on them. That’s something they have to find for themselves.

    • mike 3.2

      Yes IP our military history under British command was very successful…

      See if you can get past the trendy anti-american bullshit and acknowledge they are they second to none in the art of warfare – there’s a good chap

      • Pascal's bookie 3.2.1

        That’s why they spent trillions, and killed hundreds of thousands, so that Iran could dominate Iraq.

    • Why, oh why would a smart man like you support sending troops to an illegal war of aggression? A war extended illegally to Pakistan with drones killing civilians. With no reason other than vague reasons such as destroying the “Taliban” (have you got any idea where they are from, where the name comes from or who supports them?) , liberating women, rebuilding the country and we need more troops for success (whatever that may mean.)

      Please explain?

      Spam filter: buried. That is what happened to a lot of innocent people in Afghanistan while we, the West connected our gas pipes to the Caspian gas stocks thanks to Karzai and the Neo Con boys of the New American Century

  4. Tim Ellis 4

    LP, I think IB is perfectly able to stick up for himself.

    What I took objection to was IB saying: “Of course for the Nat’s it won’t be a moral argument so much as a pragmatic one based on political fallout versus getting those trade dollars flowing:”.

    The suggestion from that is it is morally justifiable to send troops for moral reasons (i.e. labour’s reasons) but not for trade (presumably national reasons). I know IB is a green supporter, but this is Labour Good, National Bad stuff.

    • IrishBill 4.1

      Fuck off Tim. It’s morally justifiable to deploy troops in some circumstances but not the SAS in Afghanistan now and not under Labour either. It’s never justifiable to send troops to kill and be killed simply to advance trade negotiations which is exactly what Key is screaming about in the video. I’ve never heard anything like it from Labour, the Greens or even ACT. It’s fucking disgraceful.

      • Bill 4.1.1

        Don’t forget white state power is right and the feel good factor when one of those SAS fellas such as Willy Apiata “I was only doing my job boss” tops a whole pile of guys in defence of his SAS mate (supposedly), Queen and Country (presumably) and….oh, by Christ, we’d all be over run by sand niggers and towel heads if it wasn’t for the selfless great and good who serve the one true expression of righteous master(bate)ry.

      • Chickenhawk 4.1.2

        Good on the SAS – nothing they enjoy more than topping the Queens enemies.

        Perhaps they should slit your throat as well IB – it’d save the hospital fees from the high blood pressure you’re clearly suffering from.
        [ah, a chickenhawk. Thought I would let him through. It’s good to see the ugliness we stand against sometimes. Ed]

  5. graham 5

    look they are volunters.if they want to go let them thats what soilders exist for.If you have a problem sending soilders to war disband the army like the airforce

    • Eddie 5.1

      So, we should pay for anyone who wants to go overseas and kill other people to do that?

      Pretty dumb argument.

      And so is the ‘if you’re not for this war, you’re against all war’ line.

    • BLiP 5.2

      Soldiers are public servants – not mercenaries.

  6. Doug 6

    IrishBill
    With language like that your mother should have put you in one of those new Tee Shirts with.
    “The Condom Broke’.

  7. marco 7

    The SAS are actually primarily a recon force, they only engage the enemy when they are compromised. They would probably be involved in less combat operations than the infantry. It’s their ability to gather information that the US value, they are able to do it in a way that doesn’t involve blowing the place to bits.
    I have spent time in the military and have been on deployments with SAS soldiers and whilst most don’t generally talk about their missions some do and it’s most definately not a life for the overly gung-ho.

    • What does that mean? Would they for example be send into Pakistan to find “Taliban”?
      That would mean that they would be used in a war that is not mandated by the UN and therefore a war crime, No?

  8. RT 8

    Like marco said, no gung ho. The investments in these guys are such that it would frighten you. Prob on par with our fighter pilots (when we had them). We definitely don’t go throwing them into suicidal fire fights. That’s for the grunts.

  9. Nick C 9

    Free trade or no free trade i think we have a moral duty to help in Afghanistan. We may be talking about ‘killing people’, but i dont think thats unacceptable under any circumstances. E.g. when you really boil it down i’m quite happy that Kiwi troops killed Nazi’s in WW2 in order to restore democracy and freedom for many.

    And isnt that what we’re talking about here? You say you are ‘not a supporter’ of the Taliban but i think that wording significantly downplays the evil they commit. They are quite happy to wage war against a democratically elected government, disregarding innocent lives in the process. If they aquired nuclear weapons they would likely have no hesitation to use them. And if they ever gain control of Afghanistan they would no doubt implement the same oppresive policies of the Taliban before the 2001 invasion which destroy womens rights, not to mention free speech and democracy.

    • Eddie 9.1

      So, if you’re against a group (even a group that doesn’t even run a country, is just an armed insurrection), if you think they’re ‘evil’ (whatever that is) then you have a moral duty to send boys to kill them and be killed?

      Should we send troops to North Korea? Fiji? Zimbabwe? China? I don’t like the National government, would backing armed struggle against them be morally OK with you? How ‘evil’ does a group have to be? How much power does it have to have to demand our attention?

      There’s no bright line here. It’s not a matter of saying ‘well if you don’t want to fight the Taliban you must have loved the Nazis, you’re either for fighting all bad groups or for fighting none’. It’s about deciding which fights are worth the cost.

    • BLiP 9.2

      Free trade with the US – that’s nearly as oxymoronic as “millitary intelligence” considering the US spends $US49 billion each year on farming subsidies.

      Your equating of the Taliban with the Nazis is disgusting but indicative of the “emotion-not-intellect” argument that so often promulgates US corporate interests around the globe.

  10. Rich 10

    I was talking to someone who works for NATO the other day, and they reckoned that the West would definitely win in Afghanistan. In 20 years.

    Of course the definition of “win” is debatable. Presumably by 2029 they expect that the Afghans will have become compliant moderate Muslims able to be left to their own devices. Why this should happen, rather than their being united against a colonial occupation is unclear.

    NZ should have nothing to do with any of this. Any trade benefits are illusory – the US is quite happy to trade with China, Japan, Ireland and South Africa, none of whom provide any significant forces for their colonial wars.

  11. outofbed 11

    Can’t do anything about global warming we are too insignificant
    but suggest we send an insignificant force to Afghanistan where will make 9 tenths of fuck all difference and its all suddenly where do I sign up?
    The hypocrisy is breathtaking

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    Of course, the Americans aren’t actually going in there to help the Afghanis – they want an oil pipeline through there. Hell, that’s why they helped the Taliban into power in the first place. there’s no way we should have anything more to do with Afghanistan. It might be able to sort itself out if weapons from other countries were prevented from being sold there from but that’s not likely to happen.

    The American’s are having these little wars around the place to try and prop up their failing empire. The empire that we were apart of but have been drifting away from for the last few decades. There is very little common ground between the US and NZ or even England and NZ. That empire was based upon the ready supply of oil and, guess what, the worlds running out of oil.

    The American Administration want, and probably need, to maintain the status quo of the US having most of the worlds resources funneled to them to maintain stability at home. When the US no longer gets that wealth they will no longer be able to maintain their living standards.

    • Mark M 12.1

      No Draco they helped the Taliban because at the time they were a lesser evil than the Communism they fought.
      At the time they were defending their country.

      Now they are just thugs who kidnap kids to blow up their own people..

      History is littered with the corpses of those who let wrong doers exist.
      Does any one on this blog who is anti US intervention in Afghanistan really think the civillians should be left to the revages of the Taliban.

  13. psychotherapist 13

    IB and LP, you guys are freakin’ hillarious!

    LP: ‘Tim you dickhead’
    IB: ‘Fuckoff Tim’

    Elder statesmen of the ‘standard’ setting a solid example of how others should behave in an open and free debate ona topic.

    LOL!

    • Tim Ellis 13.1

      Pscho, their language was pretty earthy, but it was honest and impassioned debate on their part rather than trying to shut me down. I don’t withdraw the comment I made about the inconsistency of suggesting one action might be morally justifiable (even if IB disagreed with it) whereas Mr Key’s motives were not, but that’s just a disagreement.

      I suppose the general point I’m making is trying to attack Mr Key’s motives on Afghanistan is pointless because I honestly don’t believe Labour would act any differently on Afghanistan. The only issue for deployment of troops anywhere for the New Zealand government is whether the deployment is in New Zealand’s interests, and a whole lot of factors go on there. It’s not black or white, and I don’t think the factors that a Labour Prime Minister would take into account are really any different from the factors that Mr Key is taking into account now. IB suggesting that the only factor Mr Key might take into account is our trade relationship with the US is a nonsense in my view.

      I don’t dispute that IB is passionately against deployment of troops under any government, but that isn’t the point I was making. I certainly appreciate the sincerity of his views on this issue.

  14. Tim Ellis 14

    Should we send troops to North Korea? Fiji? Zimbabwe? China? I don’t like the National government, would backing armed struggle against them be morally OK with you? How ‘evil’ does a group have to be? How much power does it have to have to demand our attention?

    I think the threshhold is quite clear Eddie. Where there is an internationally recognised, legitimate regime in place (the Afghan Government) that will only survive if the country is stablised, and there is a band of insurgents trying to disrupt that regime through insurrection, civil war and murder, there is a justification for New Zealand playing a part.

    Whatever your views on Iraq might have been, this isn’t like Iraq. It is much closer to Timor. Like Timor, the exit strategy in Afghanistan isn’t very clear.

    • Eddie 14.1

      Wait, Tim, so your threshold is actually really low, we should be getting involved in any civil war going where we don’t like the rebels? There’s half a dozen wars in Latin America and Africa we should be in by your standard.

      We didn’t send the SAS to Timor. Except for the initial beachhead, I think.

  15. psychotherapist 15

    The term ‘passionately’ is abused far too much in NZ’s media and blogosphere as an excuse for bad behaviour.

    But it is LP’s sandpit and if he wishes to play with broken glass and dog poo so be it.

  16. Pascal's bookie 16

    “this isn’t like Iraq. It is much closer to Timor”

    Interesting Tim. Could you expand on this please? Never mind the platitudes though, cliches don’t illuminate much I find. Specific points of comparison would be nice.

    The stablising needs to be done in the face of the govts citizens, who seem to not be too impressed with the Karzai govt. If a govt can only be sustained through anti insurgent warfare conducted mostly by foreign troops, in what sense are they ‘legitimate’?

    I can only assume you mean it in a legal sense of being the recognised govt, rather than a more philosophical sense. That lrb story I linked to upthread is well worth reading BTW.

  17. Gosman 17

    I’d suggest that those people who volunteer for the SAS are interested in being involved in combat operations and not peacekeeping work. Involving them in the war in Afghanistan, (a far more ‘just’ war than Iraq), would actually be beneficial as it provides them with combat experience, something that is invaluable and can’t be added during normal training.

    • Eddie 17.1

      Well, let’s just send them over to random countries all the time to shoot darkies then.

      • Tim Ellis 17.1.1

        That’s a disgusting comment, Eddie, and it shows yet again you’re scraping the bottom of the barrel. Was that the justification for sending the SAS into Afghanistan or committing troops time and again to Timor?

        I didn’t say New Zealand should get involved with any war. Where there is an ongoing UN mandate (as there is in Afghanistan), we have a duty to fulfill our international obligations.

        Your dishonesty and hypocrisy on this is breathtaking. At least IrishBill has the integrity to oppose Afghan intervention irrespective of who is in government. Your only opposition is that the same decision that a Labour government would have made to commit troops may take place under a National Government.

  18. BLiP 18

    Wow! This post has certainly brought out the trolls – almost as if its an organised strategy to defend US interests.

    • Gosman 18.1

      Yes because anyone who would disagree with the viewpoint that NZ should not have any combat troops in Afghanistan must be a CIA plant.

      That is how Aunty Helen got her posting to the UN. The CIA has her on a deep cover mission to undermine the UNDP.

      • BLiP 18.1.1

        Ahh yes – the ole “cast them out as conspiracy theorists” strategy, long used by the US government has a means to avoid the issue and attack the messenger.

        Speaking of which – has anyone actually seen a copy of John Key’s full Birth Certificate? 🙂

  19. ghostwhowalks 19

    THis today in Wired

    http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2009/07/no-net-no-phones-no-problem-for-troops-in-afghanistan

    NORTHERN BAMIYAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan In Iraq and Afghanistan, web cams, internet cafes and cell phones are a real morale boost: Troops can stay in touch with their families and loved ones in near-real time. That constant connectivity can have its minuses, though. Especially when the bad report cards and car repair bills follow you into a war zone.

    I recently paid a visit to a patrol base in a remote district of northern Bamiyan Province. It took hours of hard driving to reach the outpost, which is staffed by a contingent of U.S. and New Zealand troops.

    Is there something Slippery Key isnt telling us !
    Seems like prima facie troops are in Afghanistan, and the remote location doesnt have the “reconstruction” label that they normally have.

    I think the SAS or similar are allready there

    • Gosman 19.1

      Ummmm…. I think you will find that the NZ troops involved in reconstruction that are already deployed in Afghanistan are in NORTHERN BAMIYAN. There is nothing sinister in having them on patrol with US forces.

    • Tim Ellis 19.2

      ghost, New Zealand troops have been in the Bamiyan province since the beginning. I suggest you look at http://www.nzdf.mil.nz/operations/deployments/afghanistan/faq/default.htm

      There were also three rotations of the SAS in Afghanistan under the Labour Government. As Mr Farrar has pointed out, apparently it is okay to send the SAS into Afghanistan, accepting Mr Bush’s exit strategy, but it is not okay to send the SAS into Afghanistan accepting Mr Obama’s exit strategy.

      • BLiP 19.2.1

        Well done, Timothy – another National Inc talking point inserted. Do you get paid by the word?

        In this case, however, it is your own beloved Johnny-boy who is squabbling about the exit strategy. The Goober is mouthing off already-agreed points of difference that have been permitted by his US banker mates so that Key can appear to be not standing up to the US. Still, since when did reality interfere in your comments.

      • snoozer 19.2.2

        Tim.. first two comments:

        Tim Ellis
        July 27, 2009 at 7:14 pm
        This is just pathetic IB. Labour sent the SAS to Afghanistan. What you’re saying is when Labour does it it’s morally justified, but when National does it it’s for evil motives.

        Reply
        Eddie
        July 27, 2009 at 11:12 pm
        You’re reading what isn’t there again Tim. Irish makes no defence of the deployment under Labour. In case you missed, National is government now. It’s they who make these decisions. Irish is commenting on what lies behind their thinking.

  20. Gosman 20

    Can someone provide a translation for BLiP’s last comments?

    • BLiP 20.1

      Yeah – was a bit confused. I’ll try harder in future.

      In short: John Key is parrotting Washington-approved lines so as to appear to be standing up to the US. Timothy, on the other hand, was parrotting National Inc lines suggesting Labour was obedient to the Bush regime but now National Inc is being criticised for being obedient to the Obama government. Ellis Bollocks, as usual, of course.

      Clear now?

  21. Chess Player 21

    I have no great love for the Americans, but I do have a great dislike of the Taliban.

    I am quite happy for the SAS to be sent to make a contribution, possibly the greatest contribution that someone can make, on our behalf – that is what they are there for – no other purpose.

    Good men (and yes, it is usually men that must do the standing up in these situations) must stand up against evil otherwise you’ll just get another Hitler, Saddam etc.

    • snoozer 21.1

      Who else should we send them to kill? Zimbabweans? Fijians?

      Should we just give them a plane and say ‘go kill whoever you think is ‘evil’ enough’

    • Hitler was financed by the Bush family amongst others.
      Sadam was financed by the Bush family via their Consigliere Baker III amongst others.

      Your point?

      • Chess Player 21.2.1

        Sorry, you’ve lost me….

        I thought this blog was about whether people thought we should send any SAS to Afghanistan, or not – at least that’s the way I read it….

        Your point?

  22. I was reacting to you stating that if we did nothing in Afghanistan there would be another Hitler or Saddam.

    The fact is that those two were financed by the ruling elite with the Bush family as it’s figure head and that this elite has a long history creating tyrants all over the place, including al Qaeda, the Taliban and Osama bin Laden. So if the US asks us to assist them to fight in Afghanistan you should remember that unlike you they love tyrants.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Greens work to secure inquiry into Wild West student accommodation sector
    The Green Party has begun the process for a Select Committee inquiry into student accommodation, which has been exposed during COVID-19 as an under-regulated sector that straddles students with unfair debt. ...
    7 hours ago
  • New Zealand joins global search for COVID-19 vaccine
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Megan Woods, Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Hon Dr David Clark, Minister of Health Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods,  and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget 2020: Five things to know
    Budget 2020 is about rebuilding together, supporting jobs, getting business moving and the books back into the black. It’s an integral part of our COVID-19 economic response, and our plan to grow our economy and get New Zealand moving again. Here’s a quick look at the five top things you ...
    2 days ago
  • Coalition Government approves essential upgrades on Ōhakea Air Base
    The Coalition Government has approved $206 million in essential upgrades at Ōhakea Air Base.  Defence Minister Ron Mark said the money would be spent on improving old infrastructure. He said safety issues would be addressed, as well as upgrades to taxiways, accommodation and fresh, storm and waste water systems. "This ...
    6 days ago
  • Attributable to the Rt Hon Winston Peters
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First “I am not persisting with this case just for myself, but for all people who have had their privacy breached. Privacy of information is a cornerstone of our country’s democracy. Without it our society truly faces a bleak future. We now ...
    1 week ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones moves to protect sawmills
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones has introduced a Bill to Parliament that he says will "force more transparency, integrity and respect" for the domestic wood-processing sector through the registration of log traders and practice standards. The Forests (Regulation of Log Traders and Forestry Advisers) Amendment Bill had its first reading in ...
    1 week ago
  • Green MP joins international call to cancel developing countries’ debt
    Green MP Golriz Ghahraman is joining over 300 lawmakers from around the world in calling on the big banks and the IMF to forgive the debt of developing countries, in the wake of the COVID crisis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones swipes back at billion trees critics
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones says concerns that carbon foresters are planting pine trees that will never be harvested are the result of "misinformation". "The billion tree strategy is an excellent idea, unfortunately from time to time it's tainted by misinformation spread by the National Party or their grandees, hiding in scattered ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget boost for refugee families a win for compassion
    The Green Party welcomes funding in the budget to reunite more refugees with their families, ensuring they have the best chance at a new life in Aotearoa New Zealand. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How Budget 2020 is supporting jobs
    This year’s Budget is about rebuilding New Zealand together in the face of COVID-19. Jobs are central to how we’re going to do that.There’s a lot of targeted investment for employment in this year’s Budget, with announcements on creating new jobs, training people for the jobs we have, and supporting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters says China didn’t want NZ to go into lockdown
    Speaking to Stuff's Coronavirus NZ podcast, Foreign Minister Winston Peters revealed China tried to dissuade New Zealand from going into lockdown. “Without speaking out of turn, they wanted a discussion as to why we were doing it, because they thought it was an overreaction,” Mr Peters told Stuff’s Coronavirus NZ podcast. He also ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Changes made to Overseas Investment Act to protect New Zealand assets
    The Coalition Government is making changes to the Overseas Investment Act to ensure New Zealand assets don't fall into the hands of foreign ownership in the economic aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Associate Minister of Finance David Parker announced the Act will be amended to bring forward a national interest ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: Trans-Tasman bubble to help tourism industry make swift recovery
    A quick start to a trans-Tasman bubble could see the tourism industry make a swift recovery, according to Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters. "I believe tourism will turn around dramatically faster than people think," Mr Peters told reporters after Thursday's Budget. "Why? Because I think the Tasman bubble is [going ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Rt. Hon Winston Peters: Budget Speech
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First   Please check against delivery https://vimeo.com/418303651 Budget 2020: Jobs, Business and Balance   Introduction Acknowledgements to all Cabinet colleagues, and party ministers Tracey Martin, Shane Jones and Ron Mark, Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau and to caucus colleagues. Thank you for your support, your ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Jacinda Ardern’s 2020 Budget Speech
    Read Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's Budget 2020 Speech. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget 2020: Next steps to end family and sexual violence
    The 2020 Budget includes significant support to stabilise New Zealand’s family violence services, whose work has been shown to be so essential throughout the COVID-19 lockdown. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investment in housing gives more people access to the home they deserve
    The Green Party says huge new investment in public and transitional housing will get thousands more families into the warm, safe homes they deserve.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget 2020: Huge investment in green nature based jobs jump starts sustainable COVID recovery
    The Green Party says the $1.1 billion environmental investment in this year’s budget to create thousands of green jobs will help jump start a sustainable recovery from the COVID crisis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Grant Robertson’s 2020 Budget Speech
    Read Minister of Finance Grant Robertson's Budget 2020 Speech. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters tells struggling migrant workers ‘you should probably go home’
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters said today the Coalition Government told foreigners at the start of the Covid-19 crisis that if their circumstances had changed dramatically, they should go home. "And 50,000 did," Mr Peters said. Official advice to Cabinet revealed there is potentially 380,000 foreigners and migrant workers in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes today’s Alert Level 2 announcement
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First welcomes the decision today to go to Alert Level 2 from midnight Wednesday, says Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. Alert Level 2 will mean a return to work for the vast majority of New Zealand’s businesses. A return ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nurses to be protected after amendment to First Responders Bill
    Nurses now look set to get more protection from violence at work, under a proposed new law. This after NZ First MP Darroch Ball's "Protection for First Responders Bill", which introduces a six-month minimum sentence for assaults on first responders, will now also cover emergency department healthcare workers. The ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nurses to get more protection, added to ‘First Responders’ legislation
    Darroch Ball MP, New Zealand First Law and Order Spokesperson An amendment to the ‘Protection of First Responders Bill’ is being tabled which will see emergency department healthcare workers included in the legislation. “During this COVID-19 crisis we have seen reports of violence and specifically increased incidents of spitting towards ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Shane Jones: Northland port could be economic haven
    Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones is breathing new life into the proposal to move Auckland's port to Whangārei to help in the economic recovery post Covid-19 pandemic. If New Zealand First was returned in the September general election, Minister Jones said a priority would be development of an "economic haven" at Northport, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF grant for Ventnor memorial
    The plan to build a memorial to the SS Ventnor, and those who were lost when it sank off the Hokianga coast in 1902, has been granted $100,000 from the Provincial Growth Fund. Originally planned for a site near Rāwene cemetery, the memorial will now be built at the new Manea ...
    3 weeks ago
  • 75th anniversary of V.E Day
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader Leader of New Zealand First, Rt Hon Winston Peters said: “Today is the 75th anniversary of VE Day – marking the end of World War II in Europe." Millions died in the six years of war, and families were torn apart. 75 years ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Getting the job done
    From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, our Government has committed to providing calm, clear, and consistent communication, including regular press conference updates from the Prime Minister. While New Zealand is at Alert Level 3, we're making sure that New Zealanders are kept informed and up-to-date with all the latest ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters responds to Simon Bridges’ ‘my sweetheart’ comment
    New Zealand First leader Winston Peters spoke to The Country's Jamie Mackay. A day earlier, National Party leader Simon Bridges was on the radio show and referred to the Deputy Prime Minister as, "my sweetheart Winston". Mr Peters swiftly dismissed the question of whether Bridges had changed his mind about ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Historic pay equity settlement imminent for teacher aides
    The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa have agreed to settle the pay equity claim for teacher aides, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This will see more than 22,000 teacher aides, mostly women, being valued and paid fairly for the work they do. “Teacher aides are frontline ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • New Zealand and Singapore reaffirm ties
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have marked the first anniversary of the New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership with a virtual Leaders’ Meeting today. The Enhanced Partnership, signed on 17 May 2019, provides the framework for cooperation across the four main areas of trade, defence and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • JOINT STATEMENT BY THE PRIME MINISTERS OF NEW ZEALAND AND THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE ON THE FIRST AN...
    On 17 May 2019, New Zealand and Singapore established an Enhanced Partnership to elevate our relations. The Enhanced Partnership – based on the four pillars of trade and economics, security and defence, science, technology and innovation, and people-to-people links – has seen the long-standing relationship between our countries strengthen over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Government investment supports the acquisition of new Interislander ferries
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters has welcomed KiwiRail’s announcement that it is seeking a preferred shipyard to build two new rail-enabled ferries for the Cook Strait crossing. “This Government is committed to restoring rail to its rightful place in New Zealand. Bigger, better ships, with new technology are yet another ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Better protection for seabirds
    Better protection for seabirds is being put in place with a new National Plan of Action to reduce fishing-related captures, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today.   The National Plan of Action for Seabirds 2020 outlines our commitment to reduce fishing-related captures and associated seabird ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Milestone in cash flow support to SMEs
    Almost $1 billion in interest-free loans for small businesses More than 55,000 businesses have applied; 95% approved Average loan approx. $17,300 90% of applications from firms with ten or fewer staff A wide cross-section of businesses have applied, the most common are the construction industry, accommodation providers, professional firms, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Government protects kids as smoking in cars ban becomes law
    Thousands of children will have healthier lungs after the Government’s ban on smoking in cars with kids becomes law, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. This comes after the third reading of Smoke-free Environments (Prohibiting Smoking in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children) Amendment Bill earlier today. “This law makes it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
    The special Epidemic Response Committee (ERC) has successfully concluded its role, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said today. The committee was set up on 25 March by the agreement of Parliament to scrutinise the Government and its actions while keeping people safe during levels 4 and 3 of lockdown. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Foreign Minister makes four diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced four diplomatic appointments: New Zealand’s Ambassador to Belgium, High Commissioners to Nauru and Niue, and Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. “As the world seeks to manage and then recover from COVID-19, our diplomatic and trade networks are more important than ever,” Mr Peters said. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Bill to counter violent extremism online
    New Zealanders will be better protected from online harm through a Bill introduced to Parliament today, says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin. “The internet brings many benefits to society but can also be used as a weapon to spread harmful and illegal content and that is what this legislation targets,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Mycoplasma bovis eradication reaches two year milestone in good shape
    New Zealand’s world-first plan to eradicate the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis is on track the latest technical data shows, says Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two years ago the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners made a bold decision to go hard and commit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New payment to support Kiwis through COVID
    Further support for New Zealanders affected by 1-in-100 year global economic shock 12-week payment will support people searching for new work or retraining Work programme on employment insurance to support workers and businesses The Government today announced a new temporary payment to support New Zealanders who lose their jobs due ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PGF reset helps regional economies
    The Provincial Growth Fund will play a vital role in New Zealand’s post-COVID-19 recovery by creating jobs in shorter timeframes through at least $600 million being refocused on projects with more immediate economic benefits, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The funding is comprised of repurposed Provincial Growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents
    Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents Homeowners, builders and DIYers will soon have an easier time making basic home improvements as the Government scraps the need for consents for low-risk building work such as sleep-outs, sheds and carports – allowing the construction sector to fire back up quicker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Concern at introduction of national security legislation for Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says the New Zealand Government has reacted with concern at the introduction of legislation in China’s National People’s Congress relating to national security in Hong Kong.  “We have a strong interest in seeing confidence maintained in the ‘one country, two systems’ principle under which Hong ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Samoa Language Week theme is perfect for the post-COVID-19 journey
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, says the theme for the 2020 Samoa Language Week is a perfect fit for helping our Pacific communities cope with the unfolding COVID-19 crisis, and to prepare now for the journey ahead as New Zealand focuses on recovery plans and rebuilding New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Adult kakī/black stilt numbers soar
    A nearly 40-year programme to protect one of New Zealand’s most critically endangered birds is paying off, with a record number of adult kakī/black stilt recently recorded living in the wild, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. “Thanks to the team effort involved in the Department of Conservation’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Waikato-Tainui settlement story launched on 25th anniversary of Treaty signing
    The story of the Waikato-Tainui Treaty process and its enduring impact on the community is being told with a five-part web story launched today on the 25th anniversary of settlement, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “I am grateful to Waikato-Tainui for allowing us to help capture ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Taita College to benefit from $32 million school redevelopment
    Taita College in the Hutt Valley will be redeveloped to upgrade its ageing classrooms and leaky roofs, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. “The work is long overdue and will make a lasting difference to the school for generations to come,” Chris Hipkins said. “Too many of our schools are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Redeployment for workers in hard-hit regions
    The Government is allocating $36.72 million to projects in regions hard hit economically by COVID-19 to keep people working, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Projects in Hawke’s Bay, Northland, Rotorua and Queenstown will be funded from the Government’s $100 million worker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • $35m to build financial resilience for New Zealanders
    A $35m boost to financial capability service providers funded by MSD will help New Zealanders manage their money better both day to day and through periods of financial difficulty, announced Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “It’s always been our position to increase support to key groups experiencing or at risk ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New District Court Judge appointed
    Dunedin barrister Melinda Broek has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Rotorua, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Broek has iwi affiliations to Ngai Tai. She commenced her employment in 1996 with Scholefield Cockroft Lloyd in Invercargill specialising in family and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • $206 million investment in upgrades at Ohakea Air Force Base
    The Coalition Government has approved a business case for $206 million in upgrades to critical infrastructure at Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Ohakea, with the first phase starting later this year, Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. The investment will be made in three phases over five years, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Review of CAA organisational culture released
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today released the Ministry of Transport’s review of the organisational culture at the Civil Aviation Authority. Phil Twyford says all employees are entitled to a safe work environment. “I commissioned this independent review due to the concerns I had about the culture within the CAA, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Board appointed at Stats NZ
    Ensuring that Stats NZ’s direction and strategy best supports government policy decisions will be a key focus for a new Governance Advisory Board announced today by the Minister for Statistics, James Shaw. The new Governance Advisory Board will provide strategic advice to Stats NZ to ensure it is meeting New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Principal Environment Judge
    Environment Judge David Kirkpatrick of Auckland has been appointed as the Principal Environment Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  Judge Kirkpatrick was appointed an Environment Judge in February 2014. From December 2013 to July 2016 he was Chair of the Auckland Unitary Plan Independent Hearings Panel. Prior to appointment he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Digital connectivity boost for urban marae
    A programme to connect marae around the country to the internet has received $1.4 million to expand to include urban marae in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Kris Faafoi and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. The funding for the Marae Connectivity Programme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt increases assistance to drought-stricken Hawke’s Bay farmers
    The Government will provide $500,000 to the Hawke’s Bay Mayoral Drought Relief Fund to help farmers facing one of the worst droughts in living memory, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Yesterday afternoon I received a letter from Hawke's Bay's five local Government leaders asking me to contribute to the Fund. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Investment in New Zealand’s history
    Budget 2020 provides a major investment in New Zealand’s documentary heritage sector, with a commitment to leasing a new Archives Wellington facility and an increase in funding for Archives and National Library work. “Last year I released plans for a new Archives Wellington building – a purpose-built facility physically connected ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Driving prompt payments to small businesses
    Government Ministers are asking significant private enterprises to adopt prompt payment practices in line with the state sector, as a way to improve cashflow for small businesses. The Ministers of Finance, Small Business, Commerce and Consumer Affairs have written to more than 40 significant enterprises and banking industry representatives to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Rotorua tourist icon to be safeguarded
    Maori Arts and Crafts will continue to underpin the heart of the tourism sector says Minister for Maori Development Nanaia Mahuta.  “That’s why we are making a core investment of $7.6 million to Te Puia New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, over two years, as part of the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $14.7m for jobs training and education
    The Government is funding more pathways to jobs through training and education programmes in regional New Zealand to support the provinces’ recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson have announced. “New Zealand’s economic recovery will be largely driven by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Is it time to further recognise those who serve in our military?
     Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced the launch of a national conversation that aims to find out whether New Zealanders think there should be a formal agreement between service people, the Government, and the people of New Zealand. “This year marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Paving the way for a fully qualified early learning workforce
    The Government’s drive to improve the quality of early childhood education (ECE) is taking another step forward with the reintroduction of a higher funding rate for services that employ fully qualified and registered teachers, Education Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. “Research shows that high-quality ECE can improve young people’s learning ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Sport Recovery Package announced
    The Sport and Recreation sector will receive a multi-million dollar boost as part of the COVID-19 response funded at Budget 2020.  Grant Robertson says the Sport and Recreation Sector contributes about $5 billion a year to New Zealand’s GDP and employs more than 53,000 people. “Sport plays a significant role ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Major boost in support for caregivers and children
    A major increase in funding and availability of support will improve the incomes and reduce the pressure on 14,000 caregivers looking after more than 22,000 children. Children’s Minister Tracey Martin says that caregivers – all those looking after someone else’s children both in and outside the state care system – ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Great Walks recovery on track for summer
    Vital conservation and visitor infrastructure destroyed by a severe flood event in Fiordland earlier this year is being rebuilt through a $13.7 million Budget 2020 investment, announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage.   “This investment will mean iconic Great Walks such as the Routeburn track and the full length of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori – Government partnership gives whānau a new housing deal
    The Government is investing  $40 million in a partnership with Māori to get more whānau into warm, dry and secure accommodation, Associate Minister for Housing (Māori Housing) Hon Nanaia Mahuta says.. “We are partnering with Māori and iwi to respond to the growing housing crisis in the wake of COVID-19. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders Safe In The Water
    Keeping New Zealanders safe in the water Our lifeguards and coastguards who keep New Zealanders safe in the water have been given a funding boost thanks to the 2020 Budget, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector Poto Williams has announced. The water safety sector will receive $63 million over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Legal framework for COVID-19 Alert Level referred to select committee
    The COVID-19 Public Health Response Act 2020, which set a sound legal framework ahead of the move to Alert level 2, has been referred to a parliamentary select committee for review.  Attorney-General David Parker said the review of the operation of the COVID-19 specific law would be reported back to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago