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Thursday, September 09, 2010

NZ Military Intelligence? Yeah right

I am embarrassed for our defence force. Okay, first up - congratulations to 60 Minutes on TV3 - catching this nutter out as our Chief defence scientist was brilliant journalism (and should be up for an award), but in the wake of his resignation and the assumption that 60 Minutes are on the money...

Chief defence scientist resigns
The Defence Force had been looking into its chief scientist's background since being told about concerns in July, Defence Force chief Lieutenant General Jerry Mateparae has revealed.

Stephen Wilce, head of the Defence Technology Agency (DTA) and New Zealand's chief defence scientist for the past five years, resigned today following allegations on TV3's 60 Minutes programmed that he had lied on his CV and made false claims about his past.

...can we all as NZers, left and right, male and female, Maori, Pakeha, Asian, Pacific Island, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Agnostics, other, bi, straight, gay ALL OF US, can we all drop our jaws in shock that someone who was so clearly bullshit be able to be appointed to one of our most sensitive advisory roles? WTF happened? Where was his security check? What the hell went wrong? How wide spread is this contemptible lack of competence?

This has to be investigated, NZ Military Intelligence just suffered a self inflicted frontal lobotomy


At 9/9/10 6:38 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fifteen or 20 years from now, the water shortage (and therefore also food scarcities) will be a permanent political obsession in Pakistan. Even now, Pakistani politicians tend to blame India for their country's water shortage (and vice versa, of course). It will get worse when the shortage grows acute.

What turns a problem into a potential conflict is the fact that five of the six tributaries that make up the Indus system cross Indian-controlled Kashmir on their way to Pakistan. There is a treaty, dating from 1960, that divides the water between the two countries, with India getting the water from the eastern three rivers and Pakistan owning the flow from the western three. But the treaty contains a time-bomb.

India's three rivers contain only about one-fifth of the system's total flow. To boost India's share up to about 30 per cent, therefore, the World Bank arbitrators proposed that the treaty also let India extract a certain amount of water from two of Pakistan's rivers before they leave Indian territory. The proposal was reluctantly accepted by Pakistan.

The amount is not small - it is, in fact, enough water to irrigate 320,000ha - and it is a fixed amount, regardless of how much water there actually is in the river.

Now roll the tape forward 20 years. The glacial melt-water is coming to an end, and the total flow of the Indus system is down by half. But almost all of the loss is in Pakistan's three rivers, since the smaller Indian three do not depend heavily on glaciers.

So India is still getting as much water as ever from the eastern three rivers, and it is still taking its full treaty allocation of water from two of Pakistan's rivers, although they do depend on glacial melt-water and now have far less water in them.

As a result, India's total share of the Indus waters rises sharply (and quite legally) just as Pakistanis start to starve. In these circumstances, would an Indian government voluntarily take less water than the treaty allows? Get real. India will be having difficulties with its food supply too, though it will not be in such grave trouble as Pakistan.

Any Indian government that "gave India's water away" would promptly be driven from power - by Parliament if it was the usual fractious coalition, or by voters at the next election if it were an unusually disciplined single party.

On the other hand, no Pakistani government, civilian or military, could just sit by as land that has been irrigated for a century goes back to desert and food rationing is imposed nationwide. Especially not if India's fields just across the border were still green. That is the nightmare confrontation that lies down the road for these two nuclear powers.

Meanwhile, the homes of millions of Pakistanis are underwater. In terms of human suffering, it is 20 times worse than Hurricane Katrina was in the United States five years ago, and it needs a proportionate response now.

But the future holds something much worse for Pakistan (and for India), unless they start revising this 50-year-old treaty now, before the crisis arrives.

* Gwynne Dyer is a London-based independent journalist whose articles are published in 45 countries.

By Gwynne Dyer | Email Gwynne

At 9/9/10 8:24 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thu, Sep 9 15.00 trn-newstalk-zb-akl.asfCLUMSY BLOGGERS MAKE THE NEWS FIVE MINUTES AFTER 3PM.

At 9/9/10 9:53 pm, Anonymous Hungry Bear said...

I agree, this is an absolute disgrace and heads should role.
But this isn't exactly the first time such a thing has happened: former Immigration Service boss Mary Anne Thompson and Former Maori TV boss John Davy both spring to mind as people having used bullshit CV's to get themselves into high positions in NZ.

The NZ public service needs to sort it's shit out.

At 9/9/10 10:10 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And different from this guy ...


How exactly ????

At 9/9/10 10:42 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Iran and the reality Ahmadinejad is popular

Very good article from the Guardian on the reality that Ahmadinejad is popular. I think that change is inevitable in Iran, no matter where you are in the world, people yearn for freedom. Communist, Theocracy, Monarchy, Dictatorship, Democracy - it doesn't matter the regime, people want freedom and the necessary social friction being caused by the protestors in Iran is a positive thing, but those protestors need to win over their fellow countrymen the way Democrats had to win over Republicans after Bush.

These are the birth pangs of Obama's new regional order
The turmoil in Tehran reflects a refusal to accept Ahmadinejad is popular and confusion about how to respond to the US
Seumas Milne
'They have elected a Labour government," a Savoy diner famously declared on the night of Britain's election landslide in 1945. "The country will never stand for it." From the evidence so far coming out of Iran, something similar seems to be happening on the streets of Tehran – and in the western capitals just as desperate to see the back of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Of course the movement behind opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi spreads far beyond the capital's elite, as did the supporters of Winston Churchill against Clement Attlee. In Iran, it includes large sections of the middle class, students and the secular. But a similar misreading of their own social circles for the country at large appears to have convinced the opposition's supporters that it can only have lost last Friday's election through fraud.

That is also reflected in the western media, whose cameras focus so lovingly on Tehran's gilded youth and for whom Ahmadinejad is nothing but a Holocaust-denying fanatic. The other Ahmadinejad, who is seen to stand up for the country's independence, expose elite corruption on TV and use Iran's oil wealth to boost the incomes of the poor majority, is largely invisible abroad.

At 9/9/10 10:45 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

While Mousavi promised market reforms and privatisation, more personal freedom and better relations with the west, the president increased pensions and public sector wages and handed out cheap loans. So it's hardly surprising that Ahmadinejad should have a solid base among the working class, the religious, small town and rural poor – or that he might have achieved a similar majority to that of his first election in 2005. That's what one of the few genuinely independent polls (the US-based Ballen-Doherty survey) predicted last month, when the Times reported Ahmadinejad was "expected to win".

But such details have got lost as the pressure has built in Tehran for a "green revolution" amid unsubstantiated claims that the election was stolen. The strongest evidence appears to be some surprising regional results and the speed of the official announcement, triggered by Mousavi's declaration that he was the winner before the polls closed. But most official figures don't look so implausible – Mousavi won Tehran, for instance, by 2.2m votes to 1.8m – and it's hard to believe that rigging alone could account for the 11 million-vote gap between the main contenders.

If Ahmadinejad was in fact the winner, then there is an attempted coup going on in Tehran right now, and it is being led by Mousavi and his western-backed supporters. But for the demonstrators facing repression in Tehran, the conviction that they have been cheated has created its own momentum in what is now a highly polarised society. That is given more force by the fact that the protests are underpinned by a split in the theocratic regime, of which Mousavi and his allies are a powerful component.

Part of that is about a perceived threat to their own economic interests. But the division also reflects differences within the establishment about how to respond to Barack Obama and the overtures from Washington. All factions uphold Iran's right to continue nuclear reprocessing, but Mousavi's campaign was critical of the level of support given to Hezbollah and Hamas, while Ahmadinejad's supporters argue that only toughness can win western acceptance of Iran's status as a new regional power.

At 10/9/10 6:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yup, John Davy, MaryAnne Thompson, Jon Moss and now Stephen Wilce. All paid alot of money by the taxpayers, and all Walter Mitty type characters. All had/have access to sensitive and confidential information. What happened to proper due diligence in the public sector? If they can't do the basics right, what else should we be worried about?

At 10/9/10 8:40 am, Anonymous Simon said...

Wasn't there a transvestite fraudster who got the job as head of the Psychiatric department of Dunedin Hospital? Seems we are a bit prone to bullshit artists.

At 10/9/10 3:54 pm, Anonymous jimmy said...

From what I have heard about recruitment for the likes of MFAT it is mind boggiling how this guy could have gotten away with this for so long. Surely things like top-level security clearances are checked every once in a while.

A case of the watchers being scared of the watchers if you ask me and a good time to use the proceeds from crime act (which hopefully covers fraud) considering we had to fork out $2.5 million for fake advice.


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