Little & Peters should see SAS video

Vernon Small points out that basically Prime Minister Bill English has said ‘trust me because I trust Tim Keating’ as his reasoning for not having an inquiry into the SAS attack in Afghanistan that was publicised by Nicky Hager’s and Jon Stephenson’s book Hit & Run.

Stuff: English’s Monday performance shows just how much National lost when Key quit

In the Hit and Run case, in contrast, English has been over-cautious in keeping the military sweet, leaving too many questions unanswered.

Add to that his extraordinary claim that Keating was “independent” and was not part of the operation.

He was in essence saying “trust me, because I trust Keating”.

I don’t think that’s good enough, and neither does Small.

So where to now on this?

If Labour leader Andrew Little wanted to put English’s assurances to the test, he should ask to see the classified video.

As the leader of her majesty’s loyal opposition there could surely be no objection to a similar briefing to that given to English and Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee, especially if other non-elected Government officials have been privy to the footage. If English wanted to buttress his position, he should invite Little to view it.

As a member of the Intelligence and Security Committee, Little – and presumably Winston Peters – ought to have the appropriate clearances.

It might help achieve the kind of “reconciliation” between the conflicting accounts that former defence minister Wayne Mapp said were possible.

That is a very good suggestion. Our Defence Force should be trusted not just by the Government but by the whole Intelligence and Security Committee, and to do that they need to see the same evidence that English has seen.

The Defence Force line is that they they use coordinates not village names, but it should not be beyond their ability to establish that the villages named in the book are in the area they identified.

You can see why they might be reluctant. Having achieved headlines saying Hager and Stephenson had the wrong location for the villages, they will fight to the last spin doctor standing to avoid a headline that reads: “Defence Force confirms its attack was on the villages of Khak Khuday Dad and Naik identified in Hit and Run“.

In the larger scheme of things it may seem a minor point.

But it is that default to “spin” and a reliance on cute semantics that undermines English’s case – and his reliance on the Defence Force.

English hasn’t handled this decisively or convincingly. Everything can’t be revealed about our SAS and Defence Force as Hager and Stephenson want, but the public should have confidence in our military, and that requires more than the perception of one-sided spin.

I also agree with Small on the Key difference, our last PM is likely to have come up a better and more convincing way of dealing with and to the allegations.

I think the whole Intelligence and Security Committee, including Little and Peters, should see the evidence that English has based his decision on.

But English looks too dithery to deal decisively with this.

116 Comments

  1. Was it not reported that English offered Little the chance to see the video and Little declined?

    • Missy

       /  April 6, 2017

      If that is true, it leads one to speculate why Little would not want to see the video? Could it be because he fears that it will prove Hager and Stephenson wrong?

      • Gezza

         /  April 6, 2017

        Missy! 😡 Stop this nonsense at once. I refuse to believe you could that gullible.

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          ☹️ * be.

        • Missy

           /  April 6, 2017

          Gullible?

          Why am I gullible by speculating on reasons of this IF it is true.

          I haven’t had the luxury of reading and seeing everything on this matter, and I don’t know if it is true or not, and as I said at the beginning of my post ‘if it is true…’ i.e.: I am not sure it is, but if it is why would he refuse?

          Since he seemed in the beginning to put a lot of stock in Hager and Stephenson being correct that is the only logical explanation as to why he would turn down seeing the video IF he did.

          lots of if’s in my post G.

          • Gezza

             /  April 6, 2017

            A claim like that is so unlikely to be true it shouldn’t even be given the time of day without accompanying evidence.

            • Missy

               /  April 6, 2017

              Sadly where Andrew Little is concerned it is believable.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              Still waiting for the evidence. All we see so far is a Polish Exit.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              (0754 hours)

      • Sorry Missy I searched for it couldn’t find it – must have misread something. been suffering with a viral flu thing and my mind is functioning below par…

    • I didn’t see that. I would be interested in a link if it happened.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      Not that I’ve seen & my bet is this is an alternative fact. Get real dave. Would you turn down that opportunity? I freakin wouldn’t.

    • Can’t find the link to a report… must have been a comment somewhere….

  2. Andrew Little on Morning Report

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/328112/video-andrew-little-on-morning-report

    Nothing from Little about being offered a chance to see the SAS video. He says he has “immense respect” for Tim Keating but wants a full inquiry.

    He committed to having a full inquiry if he becomes Prime Minister. He doesn’t think it needs to look at possible war crimes.

    • Missy

       /  April 6, 2017

      “He says he has “immense respect” for Tim Keating…”

      Rubbish, he has shown contempt for General Keating and the NZDF.

      And no-one I know in the NZDF thinks he has shown any respect to them at all. He as good as said that Hager was telling the truth and Keating (& the NZSAS) were liars. This is something many in Defence won’t forget easily – especially as General Keating is well respected by members of the NZDF.

  3. Missy

     /  April 6, 2017

    The thing with this is that if the video belongs to the US Government then who did they get permission to view the video.

    Everyone saying we want to see this and we wan to see that with regards to this needs to understand that the NZ Government cannot just share classified information that belongs to other Governments, they need to get permission. Once they have permission they may only have permission to show specific individuals i.e.: PM only, now this may or may not be based on who the NZDF asked to get permission to see it, or it may be based on who the foreign Government that owns the information says can see it.

    So, with regards to this video if the US Government owns it, and it is classified, then they may have only given permission to certain people within the NZDF and Government to see it.

    So, regardless of clearance, the Intelligence and Security Committee may not have permission of the US Government to see the video, just because you – or a journalist – thinks they should see it is irrelevant, it isn’t that straightforward when dealing with other Governments.

    I saw over the last week or so some saying they wanted (and in some social media and other media demanding) to see the ISAF report, again, NZ doesn’t own the information, permission needs to be sought to release the classified report (not anything already released to the public) beyond the initial recipients, and then who will see it is dependent on the owners of the information and who they think should be allowed to see it – which can differ from who the NZDF would like to see it.

    I get the impression that so many people in NZ think the NZDF can release any classified information willy nilly, well they can’t if it comes from an external source, there are processes which take time (sometimes up to months), and sometimes it will not be allowed to be released to external people or organisations.

    This type of call for someone to see classified information that does not belong to NZ is irresponsible and ignorant.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      Nope. Don’t accept that. Necessary redactions in the ISAF report are possible & would be accepted as reasonable.

      • Gezza

         /  April 6, 2017

        (Didn’t downtick. You know I luv ya like a sister 👍)

      • Missy

         /  April 6, 2017

        G, you are wrong. NZ cannot simply share classified information it does not own, just as no other Government or Organisation can share classified NZ information without permission.

        You can not accept it as much as you like, but it is the reality of the world. NZDF will have to get permission before they can share any classified information or reports with or without redactions. NZ can’t just redact someone else’s report and hand it out to all and sundry, it would do our international reputation untold harm.

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          If the NZDF is permitted to defend itself with approved redactions to a vital document it is not trusted. If it is not trusted WTF are we doing putting our people in harm’s way with people who don’t trust us.

          • Gezza

             /  April 6, 2017

            I’m having a bad day. * “If NZDF is NOT permitted to defend itself … ” that should have said.

          • Missy

             /  April 6, 2017

            You aren’t that stupid G, so don’t act like it.

            This is not about the NZDF not being trusted to release the information, this is about them following well established protocols, policies and guidelines (and yes laws) about dealing with classified information that does not belong to them.

            They would not be trusted if they just went ahead and released the report without gaining the correct permissions, they would get a bad reputation internationally and never be trusted with classified information again.

            Try to understand, this is nothing about trust, if they weren’t trusted they wouldn’t have had the report in the first place.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              You are correct. I am not stupid. Nor am I one-eyed. The NZDF request to release the ISAF report with their required redactions should be made & the investigating authority should be prepared to either do that or say exactly why & be able to be quoted. As far as I know this has not happened. I don’t believe our SAS commited a war crime. I am not so certain about others there.

            • Missy

               /  April 6, 2017

              I have never thought you are stupid, but your comments did seem to imply a deliberate misunderstanding of what I was saying – which is the report cannot be released unless the NZDF gets permission, and for all we know the NZDF have made requests to allies for reports / videos etc to be released, just because it hasn’t been reported doesn’t mean it hasn’t been done. I doubt they would announce to the media that they have requested the report, so unless you (unlike me) have some inside info from General Keating’s office you won’t know one way or the other either.

              Things like this can take time, up to a couple of months for the correct permissions to be gained, the redactions to be made etc, so what would the point be of saying anything now. And then if permission was granted it may only be released to the Government Ministers or to the ISC, they may not want any of it released publicly.

              To suggest that it is easy to get it released is just plain wrong, and I was trying to make that point – it isn’t always easy to get this kind of stuff released from the originator, and certainly not publicly, for any number of reasons, not always valid, but if the originating agency / country wishes to keep their information closed then that is their right.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              But they haven’t said they have made a request. Nor that it is being considered. Nor that might take some time for the necessary approvals to be given. Nor the reasons why it has been refused if it has. So Hager & Stephenson & the lawyers & the oppos can keep on keep on pecking away at it & if they play it right timing-wise & don’t bore the population & the media too much more right now, they can keep this going for months & months.

  4. Alan Wilkinson

     /  April 6, 2017

    Suppose Little sees the video and then claims it justifies Hager and Stephenson. What then?Does the video have to be released for general exhibition? That gets us absolutely nowhere.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  April 6, 2017

      Or worse, it leaves Winston playing the field for all he can get. Ridiculous.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      Nope. As an implaccable foe of the Government & the Rt Hon William English, if Little said that, any more whingeing from Hager et al would be given even less credibility by an even greater number of plebs & they would go back to work whistling & contemplating what they would do if they win first prize in lotto. I reckon.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  April 6, 2017

        So we have established this suggestion is as ridiculous as your comments on it.

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          Very rude Al. Back to your laundry.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  April 6, 2017

            Rude but accurate.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              What? You’re back in the laundry?
              Yes, you’re quite right of course, just funnin wiv ya Al. But if Andy saw it, & says it backs Hager & Stephenson, then the Defence Chief has a big problem. So, now people can play with this suggestion for a while now because the PM & Gezza Brownlee are essentially only saying “Trust us because we trust the NZ Defence Chief”. But I just don’t automatically do that.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  April 6, 2017

              No, Bill is saying trust me because I’m the PM and I do. I don’t trust Andy because he has a motive to cause trouble, a preconceived position to defend and no responsibility.

              Building a dog fence. No laundry today.

    • Kevin

       /  April 6, 2017

      The video is poison for Little.

      If he watches it and agrees with English then he becomes part of the “cover-up” and will lose his hard-left support.

      If he disagrees then Winston and English can call him out as being a liar.

  5. Blazer

     /  April 6, 2017

    G’s ‘new’ m.o…’your comments did seem to imply a deliberate misunderstanding of what I was saying –.Missy,Al….who next?Try a ..Speights.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      WTF are you banging on about? I’ve just scrolled up & I can’t see any comments from you on this thread so far. New MO? Stop trying to figure out my thought processes & who new posters really are. You’re totally shit at both. Czech exit. You’re boring me here.

      • Blazer

         /  April 6, 2017

        you must exit through a…revolving door….A ‘Gexit’….btw,do NOT require instruction from you..about..posting.

  6. Following a complaint by the Governor of the Province about excessive civilian casualties during the 22 August 2010 operation, ISAF the international HQ. in command of NZ Forces by MOU, initiated an independent inquiry carried out by professional assessors. As I have previously published, this led to a conclusion that civilian casualties were caused owing to the sighting problem on a US Apache helicopter in support of the operation. This was publicly acknowledged in Afghanistan on 30 August 2010, and an apology was given by the responsible US Commander. Case and effect had been established on the ground and the matter fully investigated to the satisfaction of the Afghani Government.

    Just because 6 years after the event a couple of journalists with political axes to grind have alleged a war crime had been committed and published a speculative account of the matter, does not alter nor detract one bit from the fact that an inquiry independent from the NZDF was held, and no blame was ascribed to the NZDF! Even the leader of the Opposition has said there is no merit in investigating the war crime claim. I can agree with him on that, but see no purpose in creating a precedent where any person can make an allegation of wrongdoing by individuals of the NZDF and then demand a separate Government Inquiry.

    The NZDF is a disciplined body that has its own military law system in addition to the civil law that applies to all NZ citizens. The proper course of action should be that the allegation is made to the NZDF. Then the matter is subjected to investigation by an Investigating Officer appointed. If evidence is found of wrongdoing, the soldiers concerned would then be charged under Military Law, Defence Counsel will be provided and the normal processes of Military Law followed.

    To short cut the Military Law process to have a Government Inquiry would be to deny the legal rights and protections the soldiers have in Civil and Military Law! That conviction I have I am sure would be upheld by the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal. People far removed from a theatre of war should recognise the difference in the circumstances of the soldier and the comparative peaceful existence of armchair generals in the home base!

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      I do.

      • I wasn’t marrying you Gezza. You do what?

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          …recognise the difference in the circumstances of the soldier and the comparative peaceful existence of armchair generals in the home base!

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  April 6, 2017

            The wedding ceremony words are ‘I will’, not I do.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              I just said, yup.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  April 6, 2017

              Like the fox.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              Absolutely 👍

              🤔

              😳 Wot❓

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  April 6, 2017

              Look up the Anglican service…the questions are all ‘will you….’ The answer is ‘I will.’ I can’t think where ‘I do’ came from. Nobody would answer ‘I do.’ to a question that began ‘Will you…..?’

  7. There is clearly something wrong about the manner in which Hager and Stephenson handled the allegations made in “Hit and Run”. Despite Hager’s public pontifications about how good he is as an Investigative Journalist, he has failed his own tests of how they should have behaved. For a start, if he and Stephenson had cause to suspect a War Crime by NZ Forces deployed overseas they should have placed their evidence in front of NZ Defence Authorities who would be obliged to act and investigate the allegations. If evidence was found of an offence, then the soldiers would be charged and the whole system of Military Justice put into action. By choosing the method of “ambush journalism” in this case, Hager and Stephenson have sought to try the soldiers in the media and subject them to the opprobrium of the people of the world. Quite apart from denying the soldiers basic human rights to a fair trail in a court of law, Hager and Stephenson’s friends and collaborators have impugned the integrity of the Chief of the Defence Force by repudiating his right as the pinnacle of the Military Judicial System to make an objective judgement on the merits of the case. To claim bias on the part of the CDF is a contempt that should not go unanswered. I call on Hager, Stephenson and their collaborators to acknowledge their lack of journalistic judgement in this case, and apologise publicly to the soldiers and the CDF for their denial of their rights. Alternatively, because of the clear malice shown in the method of publication, the Minister of Defence should consider making a claim on behalf of the soldiers for the defamation implict in the publication.

    • Ah, but where would be the monetary gain there. We need to remember this type of propaganda masking as investigative journalism is Mr Hager’s source of income. A man has gotta make a living and keep his profile up. There’s no lucre to be had taking the sensible path you suggested.

      • That makes it worse Traveller. Since the 1850s, the Parliament of New Zealand has created laws to regulate the conduct of the Military. Yet the Leader of the Labour Party says that the head of the Armed Forces is not able to make an unbiased judgement on a matter of Military Discipline. The authors ay the same thing, and are supported by the majority of the Main Stream Media!
        So who is speaking for the soldiers? Hager and Stephenson should be exposed for the scurrilous bandits they are. I have nothing but total contempt for both of them and total admiration for the courage bravery and discipline of our troops and reassure them that those who know what their contribution is and how ethical their behaviour has been have their back. Time to speak out in their defence.

  8. Oliver

     /  April 6, 2017

    What this whole incident highlights is the need for an independent body to investigate military conduct. The police are kept in check by the independent police conduct authority. Little should be pushing for the establishment of independent military conduct authority. We can trust the military to police themselves, that’s just ridiculous.

    • Oliver

       /  April 6, 2017

      Can’t.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  April 6, 2017

      Isn’t that exactly why we have military police and courts martial?

      • Gezza

         /  April 6, 2017

        I think they tend to deal more with disciplinary matters & sins against the military by the military. They’re not the best option for dealing with war crimes allegations. Too much incentive to minimise errors & not so noble activities of associate forces. Hager & Stphenson have axes to grind. They might have taken this as far as they can but they can probably still work the political angles. There are better options internationally for reporting allegations of war crimes. Possibly a better chance of an international organisation getting access to relevant documents held by the US, or knowing where to look, and/or what to look for too. My bet is NZSAS are completeky in the clear, but Keating, you know, military chap. Looked into it. Trust the subordinates. Not rocking the boat with the allied superiors if they’ve done anything untoward. All good. No worries. Bill English. Righto. must be ok. Better go see what Paula’s up to. Hager. Damn Damn Damn. What else have we got?

        Has Stuff or Herald done an online poll about an enquiry yet? Haven’t seen one personally. Doubt most plebs are actually that interested, but be interesting to get an idea. Hager doesn’t generate warm feelings among any folk I know.

      • Oliver

         /  April 6, 2017

        Those aren’t independent body’s. It’s self policing. That’s like asking Gerry brownlee to investigate Bill English.

  9. Kitty Catkin

     /  April 6, 2017

    My guess is that this will be the proverbial nine days’ wonder.

    It’s vile that civilians are caught in cross-fire and killed, but is this a war crime ? Wouldn’t it have to be deliberate ?

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      Yep. Wasn’t there something about troops returning later to do the house burning. Can’t recall. It’s all getting rather muddy & the book’s inaccurate so shan’t be buying it & can’t borrow blazer’s because he changed his mind about buying it when it started looking dodgy.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  April 6, 2017

        You should be able to buy it from the 3 for $10 bin soon.

  10. Oliver and Gezza, you are both guilty of huge arrogance. Not once have you talked about the effects your garbage comments are having on NZ’s finest, the people who are dedicated to our protection. Your pseudo liberal comments demeaning the integrity of the Officers and Soldiers of our Armed Forces are totally unacceptable. Oliver you claim to have had some service yet you sound like a total failure as a soldier. I am outraged by your diminishment of the efforts of our Defence Forces and your failure to put your credentials up for consideration. Your cheap shots have no substance. If you have any problems with the conduct of NZ military operations then stand up like a man and make it public so it can be checked out. But no, you shelter behind the wannabees and pile your crap on the finest soldiers in this world. You are gutless coward who is not prepared to speak the truth.

    • Come on you gutless bastards, respond or apologise, you have crossed the line!

    • patupaiarehe

       /  April 6, 2017

      Oliver has claimed a lot of things BJ, and that’s all I’m going to say about that… 😉
      Personally, I think that to put this thing to rest, they should release the video to the MSM. Show it on the news, and put the whole thing in context. What briefing were those involved given? And who exactly was involved?

      • patupaiarehe

         /  April 6, 2017

        The problem with ‘Billy Boy’ saying he has seen it, and that there is no need for an investigation, is that the public don’t trust his judgement. And why should they, when his views on cannabis don’t reflect the views of most Kiwis…

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  April 6, 2017

          Utter rubbish. The public elected him to govern this country precisely because they do trust his judgement.

          • Anonymous Coward

             /  April 6, 2017

            Uh, really? They elected his predecessor. He’s just one of those gimpy fill-ins, like Mike Moore or Jenny Shipley – things worked out well for those guys didn’t it?

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  April 6, 2017

              No, they elected a National government which chose him as the PM. He is infinitely more trustworthy than any of the other party leaders IMO and I should expect the in that of the majority of NZers.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  April 6, 2017

              Fuck off Alan. Nobody voted for Bill English as prime minister

            • Anonymous Coward

               /  April 6, 2017

              Well get your love fest going while you can Al. History says he’ll be down the road come the election.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  April 6, 2017

              All of his party did which is what counts in our democracy if you’ve been asleep and haven’t noticed we don’t have a presidential election.

              Have you and Gezza been imbibing something you shouldn’t today? You seem to have lost the sensible part of your brains.

      • Patu, I was not party to the actual operational briefing so I can not answer that reasonable question. However I spent 26 years of my life in the NZ Military and a number of those years were involved in training soldiers and young officer cadets in the basics of military operations, including the rules of war. The usual process before an operational mission is to have an Orders Group in which the Commander covers all aprts of the operation starting from a statement about the Situation, a precise statement of the unit’s mission, followed by a concise statement of the means of executing the plan for the operation wherein each element of the operation has its part explained. Coordinating unstructions covering such things as means of communication, how to call for supporting fire ad the nature of the support and safety limitation, this is followed by Command and Signals Instructions that designate who takes command and in what order should the Commander be inoperative. Follwing this is a description of the Administrative and logistics aspects of the operation. Often a model of the terrain is made to illustrate the phases of the operation. Time is set aside for subunit commanders to ask about any aspect of the operation that is unclear to them. The system has worked since the Land Wars in NZ until now. It is not broke, so does not need fixing. The tasking of a qualified NZ Legal Officer to observe and report on the execution of the operation is clear evidence of the NZ Def troops to ensure they operated within the rules of war, as has been confirmed by an independent ISAF Inquiry.

        • patupaiarehe

           /  April 6, 2017

          You misunderstood me BJ. Obviously you personally, aren’t aware of those details, on that particular mission. But what you are obviously aware of, is the ‘process’, leading up to any mission. And the ‘rules of engagement’, which will differ, depending on the ‘environment’.

          • Actually PP the Rules of Engagement derive directly from NZ’s adherence to the Rules of War, ad in particular the seven Geneva Conventions. It is not a case of lets go out there and whack the baddies. It is actually life and death, and too many people make light of the trauma of armed conflict. You live with what you have done for the rest of your life, and that is the curse of operational service.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  April 6, 2017

              What I meant BJ, was that a unit would act differently, approaching a villiage, than they would approaching a machine gun. In both cases, the soldiers involved, would be well aware of what is acceptable, & what isn’t.

            • PP thanks for your clarification.

    • Oliver

       /  April 6, 2017

      [That sounds too ridiculous to be a serious comment. From your history I assume it is a deliberate attempt to be stupid. Deleted. PG]

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      My comments are having no effect on New Zealand’s finest troops whatsoever. They won’t be sitting around reading what I have said on this blog & going OMG our reputation has just destroyed totally by that bastad Gezza & now nobody has any respect for us and our wonderful Lt Gen Keating who is without a doubt the finest example of a man of honour that NZ has ever produced so now I’m so depressed & I’m jacking it in & the next time NZ gets attacked in a far off distant country on the other side of the world that the yanks shouldn’t have invaded in the first place the rotten bastards needn’t come crying to me to rescue them because I will out hunting pigs or picking flowers. Or both.

      Get some perspective Bj. Answer me this. Do you think we should get rid of the Independent Police Conduct Authority?

      • No Gezza, because they are the same as the Defence Forces who have their separate monitors of conduct with draconian powers of punishment that do not exist in civvy street. Your previous comments did you no credit. We have fought Two world wars and God only knows how many other wars or emergencies similar to wars, and have been able to regulate and discipline the acts of our soldiers and their misconduct within the Military Law. I shudder to think of the consequences of doing away with that separate law.

      • Blazer

         /  April 6, 2017

        I agree with the Col…get some ..guts..Gezza.

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          Yes but you’re a wanker.

          • Blazer

             /  April 6, 2017

            dickhead,wanker,’…dear oh dear..your tone of discussion seems to consist solely of puerile name calling…talk about ‘insert ad hominum epithet’….shame on ..you.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  April 6, 2017

              pot, kettle, black. Pull your head in Blazer, or I may have to…quote you…

            • Nelly Smickers

               /  April 6, 2017

              Yeah, c’mon guys….I used to call Catkin, *Kitzy* once, and copped a mod warning XD

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              Please don’t take it personally. It’s just an observation based on some of your comments to me & others from time to time. If you feel it is undeserved then of course I apologise for any hurt & distress it might have caused you – but if it gives you pause for reflection then hopefully you will be able to get over it and move on.

            • Blazer

               /  April 6, 2017

              @G…’always be sincere,even if you…don’t ..really ..mean it’!

        • Blazer

           /  April 6, 2017

          @Patu…feel free ,you can hardly claim any moral high ground.

          • patupaiarehe

             /  April 6, 2017

            Feel free to elaborate on that… Blazer

        • This got ugly – from people who should know better.

      • Gezza

         /  April 6, 2017

        There’s two be’s missing in that lot. Sorry about that. Just pop them in mentally if you’d be so kind. What I have said is that I don’t believe our SAS troops have committed a war crime but that I also don’t think this matter has yet been handled in the best possible way. Neither I nor the the huge bulk of the plebs of this country are in the armed services & thus legally obligated to regard the Chief of Defence as God’s right hand man.

        That there are odd bits in this story that haven’t been completely cleared up by both sides.

        And that if Hager & Stephenson really believe someone committed a war crime – & I very much doubt if someone did at all that it will be our chaps – they should take it to someone appropriate in the International Arena who will check it out thoroughly and independently from our necessarily closed & protective Military establishment who are probably too beholden to the United States Military Command to be able to freely say anything that might be critical of what US or Afgani forces might have done.

        It’s just my opinion. Fortunately I can have & express it because this is a free society, we are not currently under martial law, and you are not in command.

        They will probably do it eventually anyway. & If they don’t they’ve obviously got nothin & they know it.

  11. Alan Wilkinson

     /  April 6, 2017

    Bury it. It’s pathetic nonsense. The public is bored with it already.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      Quite possibly. I don’t trust the US military authorities to invvestigate such matters, there’s the rub for me, that’s all. .they tend to be pretty hopeless at that sort of thing unless they can’t ignore leaked videos or surviving medical doctors telling the world their C-130 gunship shelled the hospital for an hour despite it being so obvious the place was a fucking hospital they must have been freakin blind & their having video of the people killed in their beds.

      • Gezza

         /  April 6, 2017

        Also, I realise of course that it will be difficult to investigate the matter now because as a result of the stunning success of our American allies in illegally invading the country, deposing the Taliban, & installing a suitable democracy – despite several intelligent & knowledgeable commentators at the time suggesting this was not going to end well because stupid – the place in question is now controlled by the Taliban.

  12. Gezza, I just hope you and Oliver reflect upon what you have said. Yes, I will defend your right to say what you think, any time. Nonetheless, you might reflect on what you have said if you observe ANZAC Day this year and think about your grandfather’s contribution to the freedom of the world. You have to live with what you have said, not me!

    • patupaiarehe

       /  April 6, 2017

      Have you watched the ‘Collateral Murder’ video BJ? If you have, any thoughts on it?

      • patupaiarehe

         /  April 6, 2017

      • Patu, yes I watched “Collateral Murder” on the day it was published in Wikileaks. I did not like for a moment the language used by the helicopter crew, and have no doubt they felt pretty bad about things when they were outed. The lesson is in this case, no different to hunting in the NZ Bush, identify your target first and if there is the slightest doubt don’t initiate the engagement. They will wear the consequences, and it will never go away.
        Others asked about a supposed difference in approaching a village for cordon and search operations or attacking a machine gun firing at them. The machine gunner would need to be located, suppressing fire brought down, and infantry troops manoeuvre to the best place to eliminate the gunner using all means at their immediate disposal, including field craft and the proper use of ground. Approaching a village for cordon and search needs stealthy placement of the cordon in place, selection of good observation points, and camouflage and concealment (field craft).The search group would be alert and measured in their approach looking out for any concealed defences like panji pits, IEDs and possible sniper positions. The searchers work as a team and one covers the other. Rules of engagement govern the actions of troops. In Malaya this usually meant the CTs would get to shoot first .

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2017

      And can we just get back to the IPCA for a minute. Then I think I’ll leave it. So, why do we need an IPCA? Are you saying the Police Commissioner can’t be trusted to arrange for a thorough investigation matters involving the police? Is there some doubt about their being required to and able to meet the highest possible standards of integrity such that their word on an internal investigation should not simply be accepted as true & final?

      • patupaiarehe

         /  April 6, 2017

        That’s the police G. The military enforce far higher standards.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  April 6, 2017

        The police are investigators investigating investigators when they investigate themselves. Incestuous.

        The military police are investigators investigating soldiers when they investigate military crimes. Different targets. Not so incestuous.

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          The Military Police are serving soldiers investigating serving soldiers. They do a good job dealing with bad behaviour by servicepersons & I suppose really disrespectful behaviour by servicepersons towards military authority. I dunno if Courts Martial are always public. Seem to recall some being well-reported in the last few years. Bj might be able to enlighten we un-enlisted civilians on that?

  13. Gezza

     /  April 6, 2017

    It was my father, Bj. And I do think about that. And I also think about the war crime he witnessed in Italy that never got reported as well.

    • patupaiarehe

       /  April 6, 2017

      What war crime G?

      • Gezza

         /  April 6, 2017

        The one that everyone agreed not to report.

        • patupaiarehe

           /  April 6, 2017

          Those who were involved in that alleged war crime, are all dead. Do tell…

        • Gezza

           /  April 6, 2017

          Nope.

        • patupaiarehe

           /  April 6, 2017

          Um, OK. Must have been pretty horrific…

          • Gezza

             /  April 6, 2017

            Nope. Not especially given who their enemy was. Just a breach of the Geneva Convention. Only by one soldier.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  April 6, 2017

              Horrific, but well deserved, I imagine…

            • patupaiarehe

               /  April 6, 2017

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              Yeah I guess. If being an inconvenience is well deserved.

            • Gezza

               /  April 6, 2017

              But different time, different place. Dad’s in the soldier’s plot. Mum joined him there two years ago. They allow that now. Big bro takes me there when I go home to visit, & pops up there often & on his own on Anzac Day, & we text him messages for the old soldier.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  April 6, 2017

              Life isn’t always an easy journey G, as you are well aware. Humour me, & watch this one…

            • Nelly Smickers

               /  April 6, 2017

              Always luv seeing that *Patu*…..me and Wayne often act it out between us when we’re driving home from the gun-club XD

  14. The comments by some indicate to me that there is a lack of knowledge about the NZ Military Police. These are soldiers and officers who have been specially trained, Their roots are imbedded in the History of the British Provost Corps back to 13 Century CE and more recently to the Armed Constabulary who were involved in the New Zealand Wars.
    Today, Soldiers within the RNZMP are recruited from personnel already serving within the NZ Army, they cannot join directly. All applicants undergo a selection process. On selection, soldiers attend the Joint Service Police Basic Course conducted at the Military Police Training Wing in Trentham. This 10-week course trains the individual in basic military and criminal legislation, police procedures, use of force (defensive tactics), advanced driving, and basic investigative techniques. If they pass this course, the applicants are accepted into the RNZMP and allowed to wear the MP brassard/patch.

    Officers accepted into the RNZMP conduct their initial training with the Royal Australian Corps of Military Police. They then attend the same RNZMP / Joint Service Police courses as MP soldiers, run at MP Training Wing. Additionally, RNZMP officers attend the courses attended by all officers within NZ Army.

    Through their career, RNZMP personnel regularly return to MP Training Wing for continuing professional development courses. MP personnel also attend courses conducted at the Royal New Zealand Police College, and by allied MP such as the Royal Australian Corps of Military Police and the Royal Military Police.
    There is a specialist investigative section in the RNZMP Corps whose tasks are similar to UK Special Branch.
    RNZMP have lawful jurisdiction over all Military and Police people inside proclaimed Defence Areas, like Military Camps. In New Zealand for major crimes such as Rape and Murder, the RNZMP hands jurisdiction over to the NZ Police. Overseas, in operational areas on active service, RNZMP have jurisdiction over NZ soldiers and civilians even for such crimes as Rape and Murder.
    Courses conducted at MP Training Wing include investigative courses, security / close protection courses, and police command and planning courses. Instructors on the courses include serving MPs, Naval Police and (Air) Force Protection personnel; NZ Police personnel and various personnel from other Corps within the NZDF and other NZ Government Departments. Students attending MP Training Wing courses have included service personnel from Tonga, Fiji, Singapore, and Papua New Guinea.

    All RNZMP soldiers and officers are trained in close protection and serious investigations (e.g. murder, rape, fraud) skills. There are no specialisations within the RNZMP. By the extent and nature of their training, RNZMP are at least equal to if not more experienced than NZ Policemen, and that is a huge compliment to the NZ Police in my view.