“Generally speaking, would you say things in this country are heading in the right direction, or are they off on the wrong track?“
China, in contrast to members of the western alliance, has dropped no bombs on anyone. Nevertheless, it is persistently maligned by the western alliance, which has dropped bombs on multiple nations. Through membership of the Five Eyes, NZ is a part of that alliance and unavoidably complicit in its multiple breaches of international law. There are good reasons for leaving the Five Eyes alliance.
Richard Prebble claimed that while he was in Cabinet, he never received any information through Five Eyes that he could not have gathered from his home computer – or words to that effect.
Clearly, NZ needs to know what is going on in the world of geo-politics. It used to do that through its diplomatic service. Today, the Five Eyes, between them, promiscuously dredge the ether to gather mountains of raw data. After Sir John Key had been persuaded that Washington could be trusted to efficiently sift this mountain and would find and pass on the few gems of relevance to NZ, Murray McCully was tasked with the ‘reorganisation’ of the diplomatic service. In essence, this entailed retiring ‘expensive,’ experienced senior diplomats and changing the mission from gathering foreign intelligence and building personal relationships to selling milk solids.
A raised level of investment in the diplomatic service and a return to its traditional mission would do far more to preserve NZ’s security than expenditure on the military and on helping foreign intelligence services gather largely irrelevant intelligence that NZ lacks the technical skills or trained manpower to interpret.
The ‘product’ tailored to NZ’s requirements, used to come in from the diplomatic posts and the ‘analysis’ was then conducted by long-experienced civil servants. NZ’s own diplomats were ‘reliable’ sources; the same cannot be said for the foreign analysts it is now forced to rely on. They have different masters with interests and agendas that differ from NZ’s (the US orchestrated victimisation of Huawei provides a perfect example of this dynamic.)
QAnon The rapid spread of irrationality needs to be factored into consideration of the future direction of domestic and global affairs. 3 minute read.
Covid for ever Covid seen in a sensible perspective. 4 minute read
Environmental Protection & Climate Change
House on fire The tipping point approaches – NZ research. 4 minute read
Policy reverse Renewed hope for US participation in global action on climate change. 4 minute read.
Marine morsels Global marine reserves: NZ’s contribution is so small it doesn’t feature on the map. 3 minute ponder
Ecology AlterNet notices the world has more serious problems than the domestic idiocies of the Republican Party. 3 minute read.
Peace & Conflict Resolution
Five Eyes Five Eyes membership: time for parliamentary and public debates on NZ’s self-interest and the extent of its sovereignty. 3 minute read.
Uber Alles A serious warning about signs of a re-emergence of German militarism. 4 minute read.
Human Rights & Social Justice
Complicity Multiple BBC reports on Yemen – each one minute long. This could well be 2021’s worst human rights crisis. Allow 5 minutes to pick choose and listen.
Further complicity A more detailed explanation of how the West is contributing to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Rules-Based System OK! 8 minute read.