Taihoa on AUKUS Pillar 2

Written By: - Date published: 10:16 pm, April 24th, 2023 - 63 comments
Categories: Anzac Day, australian politics, China, defence, democratic participation, iraq, tech industry, uk politics, us politics, war - Tags:

Andrew Little says our government is willing to “explore” participating in AUKUS Pillar 2, but “foreign or local voices would not be a factor.” Our leaders will decide he says. I say “taihoa.”

It is deeply ironic that we have a national holiday, ANZAC Day, to commemorate a military disaster in 1915. A debacle that was largely down to the choice of one political leader, Britain’s First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill, where thousands of our young men were killed.

The context of the lead-up to World War 1, famously described by Barbara Tuchman as “The March of Folly,” was a contest of empires. We are now living in another contest of empires, between a declining United States which sees itself as destined by God for absolute supremacy as the sole hegemon, and a rising China which seeks a multipolar world where political power is shared and it is not again subject to the colonial depredations of the nineteenth century.

Events are moving fast and our media as well as our political and bureaucratic leadership here and in Australia are conditioning us to another era of the apparent inevitability of war. Australia, our only formal ally, is in the thrall of the United States and despite protestations of independence we are being drawn ineluctably into her embrace. If Australia goes to war with China over Taiwan in support of the United States, must we follow as her ally?

Who should decide our fate? And should we have a say as a people?

Not if the Australian political leadership has its way. There is a debate there about war powers reform, sparked by the fact that John Howard led Australia into the disastrous and illegal war in Iraq on his own decision. Helen Clark kept us out of it, for which we can be extremely grateful.

Now the Australian government is moving to change the law so the decision is made by the Governor-General, not the Parliament or the Executive. Given that the convention is that the GG acts on the advice of the government, this is a sidestep to avoid any possibility of debate or participation by the citizenry, and also of responsibility for the politicians. Alison Broinowski of Australians for War Powers Reform has this to say about the report of the Inquiry into War Powers Reform recently published:

Proposing that the role of the Commander in Chief, as set out in section 68 of the Constitution be restored, the Committee recommended that it ‘be utilised, particularly in relation to conflicts that are not supported by resolution by the United Nations Security Council, or an invitation of a sovereign nation given that complex matters of legality in public international law may arise in respect of an overseas commitment of that nature’.

If that means what it seems to, the Governor-General will be asked to approve the ADF being dispatched to an expeditionary war of choice that doesn’t meet the tests of legitimacy in international law. ‘Complex matters of legality’ which the report cites in explanation are always involved in public international law: that’s not the problem. What the Government seems to want is to be able to commit Australian forces to an aggressive war without either a UN Security Council resolution or the ‘invitation of a sovereign nation’.

What’s the non-sovereign nation? Obviously, Taiwan. And why will restoring the war power to the Governor-General do the trick? Because that’s in the Constitution, and indeed it’s how we entered World War I. Of course, the Governor-General can and should ask for information about such a war, but he is then obliged to give assent.

So the Prime Minister, the Defence Minister, the ADF high command and the troops will all be off the war crimes hook, and they need only wait to be told by Washington when to go. The ICC is unlikely to investigate the Governor-General.

The prospect is war with China over Taiwan. Taiwan is the excuse. The US is determined to push China down and retain its pre-eminence. Examples are technology bans – we have banned Hauwei and TikTok – and trade sanctions.

Preparation for war is taking the same course as before Iraq, with constant demonisation of all things Chinese. Public opinion has been turned against China in the West through a deliberate campaign of denigration and outright lies, funded and led by governments with the support of a complaisant media.

The colossal failure of the collapse of Singapore in 1942, another of Churchill’s disasters, is in large part why Australia has tied itself so strongly to the United States apron strings. The bombing of Darwin and the battles of the Kokoda trail together with the experience of the 7th Australian Division in Malaya brought the threat of Japanese invasion close to their home.

We did not feel it so much as a country, but I have an uncle and namesake who was shot down and killed there flying an obsolete biplane in a panicked daylight raid, another egregious failure of British military leadership.

War talk is in the air and as usual is of the wunderwaffen that the buildup to war might provide, and the so-called spinoff opportunities of technology in AUKUS Pillar 2. But wunderwaffen are extremely costly, and don’t always work as they are supposed to. Their opportunity cost is huge, and there are other and better ways to develope technology than the pathway to war.

For all the talk of war with China, besides the opportunity cost, nobody is talking about what it would actually be like. It wouldn’t be confined to the South China Sea. As disasters go, Gallipoli would be as nothing.

Its time to say to our leaders “Taihoa!” We need to talk about this. Cabinet should not decide on any consideration of AUKUS Pillar 2 until we have had a full and robust debate as a country, with full participation for all citizens.

That would be true leadership.

63 comments on “Taihoa on AUKUS Pillar 2 ”

  1. UncookedSelachimorpha 1

    There have been many unnecessary and unjust wars; quite often but not always, western nations have been on the wrong side of them. Supporting adversaries of the west in response, regardless of the particulars of those adversaries, is a mistake. The right approach I think is to look at each situation and to oppose tyranny, imperialism and colonialism. Considering the last 25 years or so:

    – Taiwan is a peaceful democracy that has not attacked or subjugated anyone (in contrast to China vs Tibet or Uyghurs). Taiwan is a largely free and open society – China is a repressive police state that tolerates no criticism.

    – It is China that says they reserve the right to use military power to invade, overthrow and control their peaceful neighbour. Taiwan is making no threats towards China.

    – A war with China over Taiwan will only occur if and when China launches an attack. No one else will start such a war.

    • You_Fool 1.1

      – A war with China over Taiwan will only occur if and when China launches an attack. No one else will start such a war

      This! if china and its puppets want to avoid war at all costs, don't invade Taiwan. Either do what was done in the early 2000s to mid 2010s and generally downplay it all and just politely remind Taiwan not to have a referendum on the subject… one nation many systems…. thus could work for the other regions they seem to want to oppress for no good reason….

      Or they could just give up on Taiwan and let it do its own thing… let it have its referendum and if it goes independent then shrug and move on with their life.

  2. RedLogix 2

    I am reluctant to dignify this fanciful nonsense with a response, but I think it worth noting that Smith is at least consistent on one thing:

    • The fall of Singapore was entirely due to the failure of the British military
    • The war in Ukraine is entirely the fault of NATO provocation
    • The prospect of an invasion of Taiwan is entirely the fault of lying Western powers.

    Anyone spot a pattern here?

    As far as the PRC's claim that Taiwan is a part of the Chinese state and has been since time immemorial – that too slides over very thin ice. For a start it was this same CCP controlled regime that overthrew the ancient Chinese imperium – and subsequently acted to repudiate and eradicate that legacy at every opportunity. Not once in it's 75 year history has the CCP controlled Taiwan. By contrast it is the Taiwanese Nationalist govt that is arguably the legitimate heir to Chinese history who have ruled over the island since they were forced to flee there in 1947.

    And even if we were to overlook this contradiction, Chinese territorial claims over Taiwan often cite the history of the Ming dynasty warlord Koxinga, who made Taiwan his base of operations during his short-lived Kingdom of Tungning (1661-1683), or Taiwan’s formal incorporation into the Qing dynasty as a province in 1887. At best we might point to less than a century of Taiwan being a part of any Chinese empire.

    On this basis the 156 year long colonial rule of Hong Kong gives the British a better claim to that territory. All things considered history lends the CCP's claim to 're-uniting' Taiwan scant credibility indeed.

    But all this a cerebral argument compared to blunt reality of the PRC's constant statements of threat to 're-unite by force', incursions on an almost daily basis, and a massive build up of naval ships, missiles and armed capacity all clearly aimed at intimidating or brutalising Taiwan into submitting to it's imperial will.

    But in Smith's world this dread prospect of war is in some unspecified manner the responsibility of devious Western powers manipulating the poor innocent CCP leaders into a war they apparently do not want.

    Nah – this is just moral posturing, playing to an audience 'look at how anti-war and virtuous I am' – all the while covertly enabling the blatant aggressor.

    • SPC 2.1

      The key determinant is Taiwan's international status.

      The Nationalist government of China that fled to Taiwan claimed it was part of China and remained the official representative of the nation of China at the UN, till replaced by the mainland regime when it was formally recognised as its official government.

      The one thing both these agreed on was that Taiwan was part of China.

      Since then Taiwan has become self governing (rather under Nationalist occupation). But is not recognised as a sovereign nation state, because it is still seen as part of China.

      It requires China to agree for there to be any change, just as it requires Ukraine to consent to Crimea or Donbass areas separating and becoming independent, or part of Russia.

      • You_Fool 2.1.1

        You seemed to have made a slight error on your statement… you seem to have mistyped and said "China " when you meant "the people of taiwan" should agree if they are part of China or not…. same as the people of Crimea and Dombass (albeit in open and fair referendums)

        • SPC 2.1.1.1

          The key determinant is international status – it's to do with recognised territorial borders and the sovereignty of the nation state.

          Thus it is the UK who decides if Scotland, or NI, even have a referendum on independence. Just as Spain does with Catalonia.

          And it is the same with Ukraine and the territories of Crimea and the Donbass.

          The idea that another party can occupy Ukraine territory, such as Russia, and hold a referendum (Crimea) without the consent of Ukraine consent is not part of international law.

          The same applies with China and Taiwan. Taiwan is not a recognised sovereign territory, it is not a nation state. And even the USA recognises that Taiwan is part of China – which is why the Nationalists of China who fled to Taiwan in 1949 remained represented on the UNSC as representative of China.

          But the regime in Beijing is now recognised as China’s government and Taiwan is part of its territory.

          The USA talks about a rules based order, but then go onto state that the re-inclusion of Taiwan within China only be done with Taiwan's agreement. At the same time agreeing to defend Taiwan from any attack.

          In a rules based order the USA only has the right to defend a nation government territory when asked to by that nation's government. But Taiwan has no recognised government.

          A much smarter nation than the USA would be seeking UN mediation.

          One only has to consider what happened in Hong Kong when the Americans encouraged a democracy there, to note that American support can lead to a Yalu River consequence. Then Truman had to place the name MacArthur in a manila folder, former commander of armies. He of course, was not going to be led by a fool into using nuclear weapons.

          • RedLogix 2.1.1.1.1

            But Taiwan has no recognised government.

            It was widely recognised for many years, until the PRC essentially demanded most other nations (13 other small nations who likely viscerally identify with Taiwan's vulnerable position still do) drop their diplomatic relations with the ROC.

            This was accomplished in many ways, sometimes just buying off nations as the price for Belt and Road investment, others like the US negotiating the eye of the needle by way of ambiguous compromise, and still others such as Lithuania being blatantly bullied by way of trade sanctions for such modest steps as permitting a Taiwanese representative office on their soil.

            And across Europe there is a real shift of attitude as a result of China's covert support for Russia's war with Ukraine. The parallels to Taiwan's position are obvious to all, and not everyone likes what they see.

            In plain reality the ROC has operated as an independently governed nation since 1947 – it's diplomatic status and recognition being compromised only by the machinations of a much larger neighbor intent on treating it as a vassal colony for entirely illegitimate reasons.

            • SPC 2.1.1.1.1.1

              It was 1949 when the Kuomintang fled to Taiwan.

              And it had no recognised government of its own (which is why it held no elections for decades), it was the location of the government of China in exile/quarantine under protection of the US fleet.

              It was not until after the government in Beijing was recognised by the USA that it took up China's place on the UNSC, that Taiwan went to autonomous region mode and began to self govern via elections. No one recognises regions of nations as sovereign.

              It is no more sovereign than Crimea was, when it held a referendum on becoming part of Russia. In that case Russia separated it from Ukraine – Taiwan was separated from China by the American fleet in 1949.

              • RedLogix

                Specious nonsense. Any other nation that had operated an independent government for 74 years on a clearly separate island territory, and as a thriving democracy for at least half that time – would have been globally recognised as nation by now.

                The only exception to this is Taiwan. And the only reason why not has been the domineering interference of a neighbor with expansionist intent.

                • DS

                  For many years, Taiwan insisted that it was the legitimate ruler of the mainland (it might still do). It's not a matter of a separate nation, but rather one part of the country winding up occupied by a different faction in a civil war.

                  • SPC

                    The government of the autonomous region of China called Taiwan does not claim to be the legitimate ruler of China. Only the "government in exile" – the "Kuomintang" did that. The current version of the Kuomintang still believe that there is one China, but now only contest elections for the rule of Taiwan.

                    • DS

                      A check of wikipedia suggests that the regime on Taiwan claimed to be the sole ruler of China until the 1990s, when they unofficially dropped that. Emphasis on "unofficial" – the legal situation is messier.

                    • SPC

                      That's when they began to hold elections for their autonomous regional government – ending the rule of the Kuomintang government of China in exile.

                  • RedLogix

                    “For many years, Taiwan insisted that it was the legitimate ruler of the mainland (it might still do).”

                    In principle this is still a reasonable claim, although it is no longer pursued for obvious practical reasons.

                    We tend to forget that it was the US-led Allies who spent considerable treasure and not some blood to assist the Chinese people to eventually expel the Japanese from the mainland. The Chinese Nationalist (Kuomintang) government under its leader Chiang Kai-shek had to move to the interior as the Japanese invaded the great cities of the East, such as Shanghai, Beijing and Nanjing, committing many atrocities against the local populations along the way.

                    Meanwhile the Chinese Communists retreated to mountain bases deep in Northwest China and hid there most of the war, only emerging once the Nationalists and the Allies had done most of the hard bloody work for them. And then in an act of cowardice and treachery, turned on the Nationalist govt at their most exhausted moment, triggering yet another bloody round of civil war and forcing them to the island of Taiwan. And then proceeded under Maoism to commit one blundering act of mis-rule and mass genocide after another for the next two decades – explicitly acting to eradicate every trace of Chinese traditional history and cultural legacy they could lay their hands on.

                    To the point where by the late 60's China had been reduced to one of the poorest, most dysfunctional nations on earth. The legacy of that brutalisation still echoes in mainland Chinese society today.

                    And to the point of this discussion, makes a complete nonsense of the CCP's idiotic claim to be the legitimate heirs of Chinese imperial history and thus to the nation of Taiwan. Hubris, bunk and revisionism rolled into one noisome bundle.

                    • SPC

                      The barrell of the US navy gun in 1949 led to Korea. And to today’s North Korea being nuclear armed. And to Oz seeking nuclear powered subs with long range missiles and to become a hub for nuclear armed subs.

                      Today’s events in Europe are the result of the West not following the advice of George Kennan in the 1990’s. And to follow after the mistakes of PNAC in the ME with the current course of confrontation over Taiwan is to follow an empire to its death bed.

                    • DS

                      Good grief.

                      For all Mao's many, many faults, he did a far better job at fighting the Japanese than Chiang ever did. In fact, whenever Chiang got weaponry and resources, he'd use it to fight the Communists, not the Japanese occupiers.

                    • RedLogix

                      @DS

                      There are many sources that contradict that claim altogether, but to start with Wikipedia as the blandest of the lot:

                      As a result of the truce between KMT and CCP, the Red Army was reorganized into the New Fourth Army and the 8th Route Army, which were placed under the command of the . The CCP agreed to accept the leadership of Chiang Kai-shek, and began to receive some financial support from the central government run by KMT. In agreement with KMT Shaan-Gan-Ning Border Region and Jin-Cha-Ji Border Region were created. They were controlled by the CCP.

                      After the commencement of full-scale war between China and Japan, the Communists forces fought in alliance with the KMT forces during the Battle of Taiyuan, and the high point of their cooperation came in 1938 during the Battle of Wuhan.

                      However, the Communists submission to the chain of command of the National Revolutionary Army was in name only. The Communists acted independently and hardly ever engaged the Japanese in conventional battles. The level of actual coordination between the CCP and KMT during the Second Sino-Japanese War was minimal.

                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_United_Front (Links removed)

                      Arguably Chiang Kai-shek’s policy of internal pacification before engaging with the Japanese was a mistake in that it lost a great deal of support from the Chinese people in the big cities suffering under Japanese occupation. But until the US entered the war and started supporting his govt militarily, he simply lacked the resources to fight on two fronts.

                    • DS

                      The key word is "conventional."

                      Mao and his mob were experts in guerilla warfare (recall his line about fishes and the sea?). You don't fight conventional battles in that context. He was, however, infinitely more effective at fighting the Japanese (or at least bogging them down) than Chiang and his corrupt group of incompetents.

                • SPC

                  In the years that there was a recognised government based in Taiwan it was as the government of China and thus it was on the UNSC.

                  Since the mainland regime has been recognised as the government of China, there has been no recognised nation state sovereign government on the island of Taiwan.

                  Since the 1970’s, it has been regarded as no more a nation state than Hong Kong was 1897-1997.

    • DS 2.2

      Umm… the Chinese Communist Party did not "overthrow the ancient Chinese imperium." 1912 was not 1949.

  3. SPC 3

    It's a tight call, inter-operability would be compromised longer term if not part of pillar 2 – a sort of tech version of Five Eyes (a form of collective to enable research/applied research/standardised roll out).

    But as it's connected to the pillar 1, it appears to place those in involved as partners to the military containment of China.

    Some sort of statement of the why, to remain connected to technology advances, and a diplomatic clarification as to impact or otherwise on our defence and foreign policy positions would be necessary.

    More bold though.

    Also an expression of concern about the China ignoring the international ruling on the South China Sea atolls – and calling for UN mediation between China and the ASEAN nations concerned. And from there indicate support for a deal between Taiwan and China – say a 2029-2049 transition from independence to a self governing region within China.

    https://thediplomat.com/2023/04/for-new-zealand-the-benefits-of-joining-aukus-pillar-ii-outweigh-the-costs/

  4. Ad 4

    Australia is the only country that New Zealand has a signed Treaty to protect.

    The trigger mechanism for assisting in the defense of Australia is clear.

    Also clear this week is the quid pro quo: if New Zealand wants the privilege and prosperity that comes with Australian citizenship, New Zealand must also defend Australia.

    It's not a difficult equation.

    And both Labour Prime Ministers shook hands on it 48 hours before ANZAC Day and 24 hours before Australia’s massive military reposition to make the point.

    Pretty obvious.

    • Tiger Mountain 4.1

      What is obvious is more that a grotesque reworking of the circumstances that led to NZ participation in WWI not be allowed to happen–“where Australia goes we go…” no thank you.

      • Ad 4.1.1

        Too late TM.

        Too late by several decades.

        You're probably wondering why we sing the Australian national anthem first at the Dawn Services, before we sing ours. Here's why:

        We have signed up to the AUKUS technology sharing partnership last week.

        This builds on the 2018 agreement between us two for deeper interoperability.

        Sometimes we also attend the Council of Australian Governments, which is Australia's highest intergovernmental forum.

        This also builds on the 1989 NZ-Australia Treaty on the reciprocal protection of classified information of Defence interest.

        https://www.treaties.mfat.govt.nz/search/details/t/2245

        This also builds on the Closer Defence Relations pact signed between the two of us in 1991. That covers shared defence, intelligence, interoperability, and strategy.

        (Haven’t needed to mention ANZUS.)

        This further builds on both Five Eyes which emerged out of WW2 and got more formalised in 1946,

        This in turn builds on the Australia-New Zealand Agreement of 1944 signed between Fraser and Menzies. This is the big one with 44 clauses, and we signed up not only to defend each other, but also, here's the kicker,

        "to support a post-war general system of world security" … and that there should be "a regional zone of defence comprising the South West and Pacific areas shall be established and that this zone should be based on Australia and New Zealand, stretching through the arc of islands North and North East of Australia, to Western Samoa and the Cook Islands."

        So you can imagine what an Australasian defence realm might look like, because they'd already imagined and signed up to it in 1944. It's quite big.

        Below you have Australian Chief of Army Lieutenant General Simon Stuart (left) and Chief of the New Zealand Army Major General John Boswell signing a co-operation deal between the two countries' armies.

        That's the price for Australian citizenship.

        And yes, we will get the call and yes we will as ever answer it.

        Australian Chief of Army Lieutenant General Simon Stuart (left) and Chief of the New Zealand Army Major General John Boswell.

        [image resized – Incognito]

        • SPC 4.1.1.1

          We have signed up to the AUKUS technology sharing partnership last week.

          Really, Little said we were considering it.

        • Tiger Mountain 4.1.1.2

          “We”–minus one at least!

          The funny old thing is much of Asia, Mid East and BRICS are not keen one little bit on such US Imperialist manipulation and it will come back to bite the US Australian Deputy Dog.

        • Sanctuary 4.1.1.3

          I guess the RNZN is hoping we will want in on the ANZAC frigate replacement program. The Hunter class general purpose frigate is going to be almost three times the displacement of the ANZAC class (10,000 tons vs 3,600) and comes with an Aegis combat system that can engage ballistic missiles. They are bigger than the Leander, Dido and Fiji class treaty cruisers operated by the RNZN in WW2 and if we brought them they would be by far the biggest and most powerful warships ever operated by us.

          The voters are going to LOVE the price tag on those ships.

          • RedLogix 4.1.1.3.1

            The other player that everyone overlooks in this debate on China, Taiwan and AUKUS is of course modern Japan. After decades of relative passivity, their military has been galvanised into a dramatic reshaping of their military capacity.

            This guy (he clearly works somewhere within the Australian defense logistics world and is highly informed) is one of the best sources on this topic around:

        • Macro 4.1.1.4

          You're probably wondering why we sing the Australian national anthem first at the Dawn Services, before we sing ours.

          And in Australia they sing the NZ National Anthem before they sing theirs. Heard it today as a matter of fact at the Rockingham RSL ANZAC service just 3 hours ago.

          Probably a matter of courtesy.

          • RedLogix 4.1.1.4.1

            Heard it today as a matter of fact at the Rockingham RSL ANZAC service just 3 hours ago

            Did you get that blustery band of rain with it? cheeky

            • Macro 4.1.1.4.1.1

              Oh yes! Poured down – then cleared just before the end. What a day after the past week of brilliant sun.

              • RedLogix

                IIRC I think you once said you have family here; welcome to WA and enjoy your visit. It took us quite a few years to feel at home in this landscape so much harsher and different to NZ.

                The difference is that if you dropped me off almost anywhere in the NZ backcountry I would be reasonably confident of working out where I was and making it out to a road end under my own steam. In Australia I think the odds would be very much lower.

                • Macro

                  Yes currently visiting the mokopuna in Baldivis. I really like the place here, the numerous parks and easy access to the beach. The kids love the skate parks!

                  The thing that really impresses me is the number of native birds as opposed to the exotics in the towns and cities back home.

                  Yes I fully understand what you are getting at wrt the maze they have created in the suburbs – Rockingham centre as a particular example!!!

                  Thank god for Google maps and the Andro Auto app!

                  Maybe we could meet up 🙂

    • Francesca 4.2

      Defence is one thing, say in an unprovoked attack.What if Australia in combo with the US attacks China first without SC clearance?

      Those nuclear submarines are designed to take the fight beyond Australia's legitimate boundaries.Are we willing to go beyond the constraints of international law and join in a war of aggression?

      Is this why our politicians are now careful to say we uphold the rules based order rather than we follow international law?

      Meaning the US makes up the rules and we take our orders.

      This election should be about climate catastrophe and the coming war on China

      Existential questions for all of us.

      Instead we'll be squabbling about who is the most marginalised stigmatised genocided community in NZ today

      • Ad 4.2.1

        New Zealand is a kite in a hurricane.

        That string is the international rules based order upon which we completely rely.

        In our social fabric, defence fabric, and trade fabric, the only hand holding that string is Australia.

        • RedLogix 4.2.1.1

          yes

          Too many kiwis still trapped into the idea that our geographic isolation can be relied upon as the main plank of a defense strategy. The Australians by contrast are waking up:

          Australia is entering the "missile age", and is no longer as protected by its geography or the limited ability of other nations to project power, according to the landmark Defence Strategic Review.

          https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-04-24/defence-strategic-review-overhauls-army-navy-air-force/102258676

          It found Australia's geographic benefits, including its regional advantage, had "radically reduced" over time with the need for a greater ability to project more power further from its shores.

          The north-eastern Indian Ocean, "including our northern approaches", should be the nation's primary area of interest for military planning, the review found.

          https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-04-24/defence-strategic-review-identifies-wa-key-area-of-concern/102260636

          It is a dangerous complacency not to understand just how vulnerable NZ is to a handful of vessels with long-range missiles. On our own we have nothing to respond with.

        • SPC 4.2.1.2

          It depends on peace, not war, to be sustained.

          Hawks blunder into wars.

          • RedLogix 4.2.1.2.1

            People who argue that pacifism is the solution to war, are about as delusional as those who would defund the police in order to eliminate crime.

            • SPC 4.2.1.2.1.1

              The issue being discussed, is how to protect a rules based order that our trade (economic society) depends on? That requires peace, it's not sustained during war time.

              Conflating that with pacificism is strawman turf.

              Peace is sustained by both diplomacy and (collective security) capability. One without the other is futile.

              The Americans are in the way of a diplomatic solution, while fostering a military build up.

              Your line of argument is GOP fed lines to the Liberal establishment’s media in Oz. Sky Oz?

        • DS 4.2.1.3

          Some of us remember Iraq, and how we emphatically did not join Australia in its idiotic adventure.

          Our commitment to international order runs through the United Nations. Sure, we'd help out Australia if Australia were ever attacked, but that is quite different from joining Australia's delusions. Australia is in absolutely no danger of being attacked – the danger comes from Canberra functioning as Washington's arse-lickers.

          • Ad 4.2.1.3.1

            The rest of us remember the vast series of military interventions our men and women have jointly participated in for, let me see, about 130 years.

            You don't need me to list them for you: they are carved into the outside walls of the Auckland War Memorial Museum.

            And that's the reason you get the day off.

            • DS 4.2.1.3.1.1

              Yes, ANZAC Day.

              The anniversary of the day that countless young men (including my great-great-uncle) were first sent into the meat-grinder because Winston Churchill wanted to help out Tsar Nicky and his bunch of reactionary anti-semitic crooks. In the context of a war fought between Imperialists, and where the key early figures of the New Zealand Labour Party were imprisoned for opposing conscription.

              ANZAC Day doesn't exist to celebrate war. It exists to remember it. There's a difference.

              • Ad

                A difference you'd acknowledge if you'd turned up this morning since it's in the text every year:

                "We will remember them."

                Great word salad though.

                • RedLogix

                  I guess the point is – what are we remembering them for?

                  There are many lessons to be taken from our remembrance of them, but perhaps one of the hardest is that the appeasement of aggressors only delays the inevitable and multiplies the ultimate price paid.

                • DS

                  Great word salad?

                  You're the one invoking ANZAC Day as a justification for why we should continue to send people to die in Imperial adventures (because we must "always defend Australia" and all that, even when nothing Australia does pertains to defence).

                  I would have thought that that would be a direct contradiction of everything ANZAC Day was supposed to mean. But oh well.

      • SPC 4.2.2

        There is no chance of a first attack by the USA.

        Thus it's problem if China tries to blockade Taiwan – thus the purpose of subs, to deter the Chinese from that first play course (now and onto 2049 a bit of an 1897-1997 reprise).

        The other risk is targeted missile attacks to force Taiwan into talks. And especially the chip manufacturing sites important to the western (and S Korea and Japan) economy.

        In this matter, you are referring to the USA defending an autonomous region of China – one remaining in rebellion against its national government. This is imperial power rules territory, that can only be reversed with the end of such status for the USA, or its return to being bound by the rules based order itself.

    • SPC 4.3

      The term quid pro quo, is to remain unused in the time of the QUAD. A bike has 4 wheels – 5 makes it a toy.

  5. Steve Bradley 5

    Mike Smith is reliably skeptical about the motives of the USA and its compliant allies.

    New Zealand under a Labour government took the correct action when declaring nuclear-free status 40 years ago. Any back-sliding on that stance is a betrayal of our correct policy and a waste of the effort and sacrifice that it took to maintain it against the weight of the mighty Empire.

    On this Anzac Day, of all days, the death, the pain, the suffering, and destruction of our works must remind us of the futility of war. No effort should be spared to avoid it.

    • Ad 5.1

      Our legislated anti-nuclear stance is the least important of our defence arrangements, as I outline above.

  6. Sanctuary 6

    There are two questions here, although they are inter-related. The first how much do we want to engage in imperialist power struggles and the second is where and when we might fight to defend democracy and a rules based world order from attempts to change the world order by coercion. For them, any alternative is better than Washingtons.

    There are many of the left – anti-American types who still get a boner at the thought of the USSR, still have their copy of the little red book squirreled away in the bookcase – who tend to puff for China's state capitalist dystopia. This is despite the utter ghastliness of Xi's regime, a regime that engages in genocide of the Uyghers and has devastated it's environment to the point of ecocide.

    For the OP, the Standard's resident campist true believer in third worldism, the excitement is in the idea of a rupture of the Washington led order and possibilities that may create for a re-making of the world order in fashion more to their taste. But to me, it isn't good enough to just revel in the dubious delights of a nightmarish authoritarian triumverate of the brutal and autocratic behaviour of Putin's Russia, the theocratic fascism of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Xi's Chinese vision of a surveillance police state "…made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science…" replacing Washington's very mild (for us at least) imperialism with one their own. We should be aiming to replace all forms of imperialism with a mutually beneficial world. But NZ is small country, and we are where we are, and we have to pursue our goals within a strategic horizon determined by imperialist competition.

    Generally speaking, we wish for a "rules based" world order and for collective security with like minded allies. That unfortunately has be tempered by the aforementioned strategic horizon of imperial competition. So we should be lukewarm to Washington's attempts to "contain" China and encourage rapproachment at every opportunity. But at the same time, Taiwan is a small, unthreating country that is also a functioning and thriving democracy and it's people are free and of a mind to defend their island. Would we be any different? New Zealand's commitment to a rules based order, collective security and our wider moral duty tohelp defend free people everywhere from aggression means we should be clear eyed as to what that might mean – and it means making it clear we will join any alliance defending Taiwan (and for that matter, the Ukraine) from any attempt to alter the existing world order by coercion and aggressive war. The Ukraine is far away and it has many powerful allies. It isn't our war to the point of shooting. Taiwan is in our neighbourhood, and it's fight would be our fight.

    • SPC 6.1

      Back in 1950, apparently thanks to the neglect of Dean Acheson, North Korea invaded the South.

      However it was in reality a consequence of the US fleet protecting the Nationalist government of China's retreat to Taiwan and their remaining on the UNSC representing China. It was designed to bait the USA into a land war with China.

      We were involved because defence of South Korea was sanctioned by the UNSC.

      The consequence of the separation of Taiwan from China back in 1949 are still with us. Decades later a nuclear armed North Korea and now the chance of war over Taiwan.

      The collective security of nations has two rules – UNSC sanctioned action, or in defence of a recognised nation state government seeking support.

    • RedLogix 6.2

      But to me, it isn't good enough to just revel in the dubious delights of a nightmarish authoritarian triumverate of the brutal and autocratic behaviour of Putin's Russia, the theocratic fascism of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Xi's Chinese vision of a surveillance police state "…made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science…"

      Fuck me that is powerful writing. You are totally correct, those locked into a 1980's anti-Americanism rarely if ever express what their preferred alternative might be. Mainly because they should know perfectly well that if the Yanks really did go home and leave the rest of the world to the tender mercies of the above mentioned ghastly triumverate – they would likely be the first up against the wall.

      We should be aiming to replace all forms of imperialism with a mutually beneficial world.

      We already know what is required. In the immediate, sobering aftermath of the last global conflict we created the UN as the necessary solution. It was not perfect, and stands in thorough need of repair and reform – but in essence the nations of the world must cede their sovereign right to commit war to a higher global body. Exactly as citizens we cede our personal right to violence to the nation state's institutions.

      The only people who tell you that force and violence must be eradicated are those who want to lull you into weakness before they prey upon you.

  7. SPC 7

    A UK Minister tries to be clever

    “It would be clear and easy – perhaps even satisfying – for me to declare a new cold war and say that our goal is to isolate China,” he will say.

    “Clear, easy, satisfying – and wrong. Because it would be a betrayal of our national interest and a wilful misunderstanding of the modern world.”

    “No significant global problem – from climate change to pandemic prevention, from economic stability to nuclear proliferation – can be solved without China.

    by recognising that there needs to be constructive engagement with China

    While also responding to China's actions.

    He calls on China to be clear about the motives and intentions (doctrine) behind its military build up, lest it lead to a new Cold War.

    Transparency is surely in everyone’s interests and secrecy can only increase the risk of tragic miscalculation.”

    And then notes

    The country is also developing hypersonic missiles that can evade US defences, alongside space weapons that can knock out satellites.

    Beijing has also converted atolls in the South China Sea into actual islands, installing airstrips and military facilities on them.

    And then concludes

    “We do not expect our disagreements with China to be swiftly overcome, but we do expect China to observe the laws and obligations that it has freely accepted.

    Unfortunately, not so cleverly, he confuses Taiwan with being a separate country to China, that will only annoy them. Dean Acheson syndrome?

    “Peaceful co-existence has to begin with respecting fundamental laws and institutions, including the UN Charter, which protects every country against invasion.”

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/uk-china-relations-china-must-come-clean-on-biggest-military-build-up-in-peacetime/7YFMDFQ6ANC4FMULWXXWFV6RDU/

    • RedLogix 7.1

      While everyone loves to compare military spending on an absolute basis – and yes the US remains way ahead by a country mile, this does not always paint an accurate picture.

      For a start not every unit of expenditure on a nation's military returns the same value in capacity. The US maintains a widely diffuse capacity at relatively high personnel and equipment costs, while by comparison the PRC is focused on a regional goal and much lower costs per unit. In terms of the resulting capacity the gap between the two nations in the region that matters here, is very much closer than raw dollars might suggest.

      More widely it is worth noting that many developed world nations have been getting away with military expenditures often way less than 1% of GDP, until recently being able to take shelter under global reach of the US umbrella who spend some 3% of their GDP. The Europeans – until the very recent Russian misadventure – were routinely spending well south of the 2% of GDP NATO membership obliged of them.

      Now consider that China is spending north of 4% of GDP on a massive military build-up, building a comprehensive high tech nuclear capable missile fleet, and naval vessels faster than anyone else on earth. The idea that it is the US or Western powers 'provoking' an arms race is a conclusion you can only reach by literally ignoring the man in the gorilla suit prancing around the room.

      • SPC 7.1.1

        The NATO requirement of 2% was set for 2024 (back in 2014). Notably Germany kept spending at 1% right up until the Russian invasion of Ukraine and were intent on the Nordstrom pipeline *2. They declared an intent to move to 2% soon afterwards – they first wanted to see if NATO had any continuing relevance.

        Putin reinvigorated NATO. Now there is a chance that Ukraine will get NATO membership after any cease-fire.

        The point of AUKUS pillar 11 is to work together on research, development and inter-operability to share cost (economic base for the defence cost). That and Japanese defense spending is designed to demonstrate that continuing build-up by China will not change the equation.

        However the reason for diplomacy (over Taiwan and the South China sea atolls) is to proffer an alternative to this expensive course (for both).

        For mine we should seek a 2029-2049 period of transfer of Taiwan into China in return for China giving up any claim the atolls are part of China.

        • RedLogix 7.1.1.1

          For mine we should seek a 2029-2049 period of transfer of Taiwan into China in return for China giving up any claim the atolls are part of China.

          And for mine I suggest New Zealand is transferred into the Australian Federation next year – and you will not be asked for your view of the matter. devil

          • SPC 7.1.1.1.1

            Some would enjoy the Oz wage rates – nurses, doctors and teachers etc (and we would get people returning).

            But the lack of an alternative voice increases the odds of a confrontation.

            A blockade cutting off supply of chips from Taiwan will cause a depression like effect in some sectors of the global economy.

            I would not even try and forecast the result of US/UK subs vs the Chinese navy (while the American fleet is within the range of land based Chinese missiles).

  8. Ed 8

    I’m guessing China will be accused in the future of an unprovoked attack on Taiwan.

    You know…the way Russia’s attack on the Donbass has been described as unprovoked.

  9. lprent 9

    Examples are technology bans – we have banned Hauwei and TikTok – and trade sanctions.

    Sigh. Just a simple and sarcastic fact check on just that one glaring pile of bullshit.

    'We' haven't banned Huawei. They are still present in NZ, still selling goods here, still competing for government contracts, and still with ruddy great big sign on a building in Central Auckland (I got dragged up the SkyTower for a kids birthday).

    What has happened is this. Ignore the title and read the text.

    5G application rejected

    While New Zealand technically didn't ban Huawei from building 5G networks here, the Government's rejection of its application to do so, based on advice from our intelligence agencies, effectively amounted to a ban.

    Basically a lot of government agencies and reglatory bodies have a say in infrastructural projects from the Ministry of Environment to the Commerce Commission. This includes the intelligence services and the military. 'We' expect them to look at the risks for 'Us' with any infrastructure technology and installation. I expect to have the Ministry of Health look at health risks. The Commerce Commission to look at competitiveness issues. And the security services to look at risks to sensitive infrastructure.

    The 5G network, like all of the communications, electricity, shipping, medical and a host of other infrastructures are not an open slather market place. They are regulated because they are such a problem if they have problems. 'We' look at these considerations regardless if the suppliers are Ericsson, Nortel (showing my age there), and anyone else.

    Is Mike seriously trying to look like our local Rimmer? Because without saying it he seems to be suggesting that none of these bodies have a right to interfere in a free market in infrastructure. Whereas regulating a free market to reduce its excesses is exactly what all except a few nutbars elect them to do.

    'We' also not banned TikTok, although I'd be interested in that happening because it is in my view a pile of junk. 'We' can load the stupid social media application on to our phones and devices.

    However Parliamentary Services (rather than the frigging 'We') have said devices running TikTok are not welcome on the parliamentary network. Which that have a perfect right to do if they have concerns about the application.

    Parliamentary Services also insist that people connect to its network services with private networks and strong security procedures and have been doing so for at least 30 years. Do we get rid of that as well and produce a nice hacker paradise that gets exploited like Estonia in 2007, the cyber attacks against Iran in 2010, or the repeated cyber-warfare attacks on Ukraine from 2012 onwards and intensifying after Russia invaded in 2022.

    Remember that once in past the security perimeter of VPNs, application like TikTok are capable to run at least partially inside internal networks. You can throw up internal firewalls, but really can't stop zero-day security holes appearing if you can't stop continuous updates of applications and their plugins. It is simply safer to not install risks.

    At the other extreme from PS, Defence pretty much lock down their devices from almost all social media or severely monitor them. Probably because of the ease of monitoring defence establishments with networked devices. For instance with exercise apps.

    It just becomes a choice for people in restricted network areas. As the highly inaccurate Guardian article said at the end

    The New Zealand ban does not specifically cover MPs’ personal phones, but those phones must have the app uninstalled in order to access any parliament applications.

    A number of New Zealand MPs use TikTok to post political videos and commentary. Among the most prolific are Te Pāti Māori leaders Debbie Ngarewa-Packer and Rawiri Waititi, and Act party leader David Seymour. The Māori party had not responded to requests for comment by time of publication. A spokesperson for Act said the party’s TikTok account “is run from a personal phone free of parliamentary information. We have been taking this precaution for some time.”

    Well Duh!

    Every place I have worked for has the similar restrictions over the last few decades, right since I got my first smartphone iphone 3 back in 2003 (?) and my first laptop back in the early 1990s.

    If I'm on the company network or VPN, then I am restricted in what I can have on my phone. I'm either on the guest network or I have a cleanish device or computer. I mostly use work equipment for work, and personal equipment for non-work.

    It is a bit tiresome telling people to read past the stupid inaccurate headlines and actually read the details. A title is a come on of a less than a dozen words – they are inherently inaccurate. That is why it pays to read and think about the content.

    Problem here is that I suspect Mike didn't read any of the news articles about Huawei or TikTok – in fact he only linked a post about Australia. If he had he would have discovered a simple fact 'We', as in NZ or the government, haven't banned either.

    Some of the government bodies have specified that they see risks from them. So have some businesses that I'm aware of. Some invariably after torturous advice about potential risks have gone so far as restricting the applications and hardware from their networks because the costs of mitigating risks are far too high and produce insufficient benefits. This is is the nature of all computer and communications systems because it is an eternal struggle to keep the risk levels down to the point that you aren't overworking staff.

    I'd say that using the royal 'We' as a description of a body is invariably inaccurate. It isn't Mike doing the work to secure systems, it is tech-heads like me. Rather than being some vast Trumpian conspiracy (who after all is a complete technical smeg-head who gets swayed by something as simplistic as Fox talking heads), decisions about what to secure and to allow into private networks is just a question of risks, benefits, time, cost and effort.

    Securing the risk of some arbitrary idiotic trash app like Tiktok inside a serious system is a irritating waste of time, nearly impossible to remove risk from, and a excessive source of cost for techs and our employers. The same applies with much higher potential risks and costs when you're looking at the hardware, firmware, and software on major infrastructure networks

    You simply don't need to run a dumbarse conspiracy theory about it. Decisions like this are made based on risks and benefits, and those change over time.

    • Currently every company in the world is shortening their supply chains because the pandemic exposed just how risky that could be – after 50 years of doing the opposite and ever increasing their length and the numbers of potential choke points.
    • Climate change has been forcing a look at the risks of burning fossil carbon. It isn't the unmitigated benefactor it was perceived to be in the early periods of the ages of coal and petroleum.
    • Everyone has been taking cyber-security of sensitive networks much more seriously since the ransomware crime wave got really widespread. Having people die when their hospital system gets encrypted, or a company dying when the same happens to them goes way beyond risky to fatal.
    • All electronic infrastructure, networked or isolated, has had a serious upgrade in assessment in potential risks since the Estonian denial of service attacks, the Stuxnet attacks in Iran, and most especially since Russia attacked the Ukrainian infrastructure and communications. The implications spread out through and economic system.
    • etc etc…

    NZ has been handling most of these with particular grace, albeit somewhat too slowly. But I guess that not having a limited supply of weirdo nutbars like Trump or Johnson in charge helps.

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    7 days ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    7 days ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
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    1 week ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
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    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
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    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
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    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
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    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
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    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
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    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
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    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
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    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
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    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
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    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
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    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
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    1 week ago
  • Still doing a good 20
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    1 week ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
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    1 week ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
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    1 week ago
  • All good, still
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    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • The looting is the point
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
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    2 weeks ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
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    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
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    2 weeks ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
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    2 weeks ago
  • Rage Bait!
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    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 weeks ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
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    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
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    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
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    2 weeks ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
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    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    2 weeks ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
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    2 weeks ago

  • Transformative investment in cancer treatments and more new medicines
    The coalition Government is delivering up to 26 cancer treatments as part of an overall package of up to 54 more new medicines, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti and Associate Health Minister David Seymour announced today. “Pharmac estimates that around 175,000 people will benefit from the additional treatments in just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • More support for drought-affected communities
    The coalition Government is providing more financial support to drought-stricken farmers and growers in many parts of the country to help with essential living costs. “Rural Assistance Payments have been made available in 38 districts affected by dry conditions to help eligible farmers and growers whose income has taken a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • New cops means more Police on the beat
    The decision to deploy more Police on the beat in Auckland CBD has been welcomed by Police Minister Mark Mitchell and Associate Police Minister Casey Costello. Starting from 1 July, an additional 21 police officers will be redeployed in Auckland City, bringing the total number of beat police in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes action to address youth crime
    The Government is introducing a new declaration for young offenders to ensure they face tougher consequences and are better supported to turn their lives around, Children’s Minister Karen Chhour announced today. The establishment of a Young Serious Offender declaration delivers on a coalition Government commitment and supports the Government’s target ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
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    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
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    5 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
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    7 days ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
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    7 days ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
    The Department of Internal Affairs [Department] is making a significant upgrade to their Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which blocks access to websites known to host child sexual abuse material, says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “The Department will incorporate the up-to-date lists of websites hosting child sexual ...
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    7 days ago
  • New vaccine research aims to combat prevalent bovine disease
    A vaccine to prevent an infectious disease that costs New Zealand cattle farmers more than $190 million each year could radically improve the health of our cows and boost on-farm productivity, Associate Agriculture Minister Andrew Hoggard says. The Ministry for Primary Industries is backing a project that aims to develop ...
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    7 days ago
  • Making it easier to build granny flats
    The Government has today announced that it is making it easier for people to build granny flats, Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop say. “Making it easier to build granny flats will make it more affordable for families to live the way that suits them ...
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    1 week ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
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    1 week ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
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    2 weeks ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
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    2 weeks ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
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    2 weeks ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
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    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
    Thank you to the Law Association for inviting me to speak this morning. As a former president under its previous name — the Auckland District Law Society — I take particular satisfaction in seeing this organisation, and its members, in such good heart. As Attorney-General, I am grateful for these ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • 25 years on, NZ reaffirms enduring friendship with Timor Leste
    New Zealand is committed to working closely with Timor-Leste to support its prosperity and resilience, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “This year is the 25th anniversary of New Zealand sending peacekeepers to Timor-Leste, who contributed to the country’s stabilisation and ultimately its independence,” Mr Peters says.    “A quarter ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Inquiry requested into rural banking
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    2 weeks ago

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