Nicky Hager, mainstream media puppets and is our new GG a war criminal?
If there is one overwhelming sense of anger from Nicky's brilliant new book, Other People's Wars' it is aimed at the NZ military and their attempts to lie outright to politicians about what our armed forces are doing and a deep contempt at the mainstream media in this country who have acted as puppets for Army propaganda over our right as citizens in knowing exactly what sins in war we are committing to keep America happy.
We have allowed our 'Kiwi Camp' to be a cover for the CIA, yet this base has been sold via the embedded mainstream media as some type of rainbow coloured peace force planting unicorns and candy canes of love. Guyon Espiner, one of the embedded mouthpieces, declares that he has been to Afghanistan, as does Vermin Small. Both note that the CIA were there, yet neither believed that information was news worthy or relevant???
I'm sorry, the CIA are using our bases as a front because Provincial Reconstruction Teams don't get attacked the way Forward Operating bases do but neither Vermin or Guy smiley think that fact is news worthy in any way shape or form? The mainstream media's self censoring compliance with the NZ military and their outright willingness to don a flak jacket and helmet and play the intrepid journalist shtick is actually part of the problem.
From the book...
having CIA operatives inside the Kiwi base fitted poorly with the deployment's stated goals. Why would the New Zealand authorities risk the New Zealanders working at Kiwi Base, and the credibility of the New Zealand peacekeeping mission, by mixing them up with a CIA operation? After the suicide attack on the FOB [forward operating base] Chapman, the issue of CIA operations inside a provincial reconstruction team was widely discussed. The Times wrote that "PRTs have been criticised widely for endangering civilian aid workers by blurring the line between development staff and the military.
...and it's not as if our teams actually built anything of any use with independent reports citing the spin work we did for the locals to hide what we are really doing as "poorly planned" and "wildly exaggerated".
While Guyon Espiner and TVNZ spin why they aren't puppets to the NZ military and Vermin Small attempts to back pedal his own extraordinary lapse of journalistic judgement, other mainstream media pundits have sniffed the news oxygen and have crossed the Rubicon...
Bluster won't bury Hager's revelations on military
The tsunami of flannel emanating from John Key, Phil Goff and the former Defence top dogs will not bury Nicky Hager's latest exposure on New Zealand's involvement in Afghanistan, Iran and the war on terror.
Nor should it.
Whatever your position on New Zealand's relationship with the United States - and I have been a long-time advocate for much closer political, trade and defence ties - Hager's Other People's Wars makes public plenty of new material about the origins of this country's entry into the first wars of the 21st century.
...and National Party apologist John Armstrong had little to cheerlead...
'Candyfloss' PR exposed in all its cynicism
Those who think Nicky Hager is just another left-wing stirrer and dismiss his latest book accordingly should think again.
Likewise, the country's politicians should read Other People's Wars before condemning it.
Whatever Hager's motive for investigating New Zealand's contribution over the past decade to the United States-led "war on terror", it is pretty irrelevant when placed alongside the mountain of previously confidential and very disturbing information his assiduous research and inquiries have uncovered.
With the help of well-placed informants and thousands of leaked documents, Hager exposes the cynical manner in which the Defence Force has purposely misled the public by omission of pertinent facts and public relations flannel.
This is particularly the case with regard to the "candyfloss" image the military has built around the deployment of New Zealand soldiers in the Bamiyan province of Afghanistan.
That image is of our soldiers acting more like peacekeepers armed with nothing more dangerous than a shovel.
But beyond the Kiwi Camp front and our self censoring mainstream media puppets, is the shock that our military have lied and deceived our own politicians about what we are really doing in this war for America...
Defence Force staff responsible for the deployment of Orion aircraft and Anzac frigates to the Gulf in the "war against terror" ignored instructions from then prime minister Helen Clark to keep their operations separate from those being conducted by the United States against Iraq. The book quotes unidentified officials and former diplomats as agreeing that Clark - lacking a strong defence minister - fought a lone battle against never ending efforts by the Defence and Foreign Affairs ministries to rewrite Government policy and buy military equipment which would enable New Zealand to build bridges with the United States.
New Zealand diplomats resorted to underhand tricks when they did not get their way with the last Labour Government. For example, when Ministry of Foreign Affairs officials did not like a particular Government policy decision, New Zealand's ambassadors in Washington and Canberra were told to sound out the views of the local bureaucrats. The ministry would then tell Government ministers that the Americans and Australians had made it known they were very concerned and there could be "relationship implications".
Our military have run amok and the appointment of Jerry Mateparae as our new Governor General, a man at the heart of these claims, a man who must have known we were handing civilians over for torture and a man who was until recently also the spy boss of NZ is a step too far down a rabbit hole no one wants to imagine.
How have we managed to appoint someone as Governor General who may in fact have been party to war crimes who was running a military who were making up their own foreign policy minus any criticism from our mainstream media pundits?
It's the willfully ignorant media leading the ignorantly willful public.
All John Key is saying, is give war a chance.
We've been played again sleepy hobbits.