National’s Woodhouse wants to ban Chelsea Manning from visiting NZ

National MP and former Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse is calling for a ban on US whistle blower Chelsea Manning from visiting New Zealand.

Stuff:  National wants Chelsea Manning barred from New Zealand

National is calling on the Government to bar ex-US army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning from visiting the country next month.

Former Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse said the “convicted felon” should not be allowed to earn money talking about her crimes, and it would “not enhance” New Zealand’s relationship with the US.

Manning, who was sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking hundreds of thousands of classified American diplomatic and military documents, has two speaking events scheduled in early September.

Her conviction for espionage and computer fraud means she is likely to require a “special direction” from the Government to allow her into the country.

Woodhouse said if an application from Manning had landed on his desk while he was Immigration Minister, he would have denied it, and called on the Government to do the same.

“She is wanting to be hailed as a hero for stealing military secrets and state secrets. She was convicted of very serious crimes.

“I’m a firm believer in free speech. But I don’t believe there is a basis to say that her crimes are victimless. We will never know because of the nature of her offending – whether there are people that were put in harm’s way,” Woodhouse said.

I’m very surprised that Woodhouse and national have chosen this as something to bark at.

I have no idea what a normal Immigration position would be on someone like Manning, but on a free speech basis this stance almost makes me speechless.

95 Comments

  1. Blazer

     /  August 28, 2018

    typical National…especially after the recent focus on other individuals and freedom of expression.

    • PDB

       /  August 28, 2018

      Slight difference in that Manning has a conviction for serious crime. Be interesting to see what Winston says – one would think he wouldn’t be in favour considering the type of crime committed.

      • robertguyton

         /  August 28, 2018

        Nelson Mandala was a criminal and served a long sentence in jail. Would you have banned him, PDB?

        • PDB

           /  August 28, 2018

          Totally different circumstances Robert – chalk and cheese in terms of the reason for imprisonment and how those prison sentences were resolved. That’s why the immigration minister makes the call on such instances on a case-by-case basis.

        • David

           /  August 28, 2018

          Mandela murdered people and was involved with terrorism Robert Manning is just a traitor who was convenient for Obama to virtue signal because he wears a frock for a pardon.

          • Gezza

             /  August 28, 2018

            Don’t make no never mind. Manning was a traitor to the US, not us, but I’m glad she handed over some of that information to wikileaks.

            As long as she’s entitled to a US passport they’re happy for her to travel

            If the NZ government doesn’t plan to give her access to any of classified information she could leak to wikileaks I don’t see how it would cause us any problems to let her come here and speak.

            She’s hardly a danger to anyone now & the crime she was pardoned for is unlikely to have any impact on the NZ government or public.

            Woodhouse just looking for attention possibly. Wasting his time. My bet is the visit will be approved in the interests of free speech.

            • Missy

               /  August 29, 2018

              Actually G, Manning was a traitor of sorts to us as well. By giving away US secrets there is a possibility that some of the information included stuff about NZ and NZ troops in Afghanistan, thus giving away our secrets too.

              I don’t think she should be given a visa, she was convicted of espionage – a very serious crime for someone who has sworn an oath of allegiance, as she would have done when entering the military.

              Those trying to make this a free speech issue are missing the point completely, she is a convicted felon, she committed a serious crime that could have potentially cost people their lives. Despite swearing an oath of allegiance – and signing a declaration to keep the secrets safe – she betrayed not only her country, but those that were dependent on US soldiers for security including NATO partners, and yes NZ soldiers, not to mention the number of Afghan locals who were working with – and helping – the coalition soldiers in Afghanistan. She should not be hailed a hero, and should not be allowed to profit from her crime.

            • Gezza

               /  August 29, 2018

              Point taken. The issue is really that Mr Woodhouse – a former Minister of Immigration (& not a very good one looking at National’s policies) shouldn’t be trying direct the current Immigration Minister in the exercise of his discretion.

    • Corky

       /  August 28, 2018

      The guy is a traitor to America and the Western way. He is lucky he wasn’t Chinese or Russian. I’d rather kiss a liberal snowflakes butt if it meant not having this person in the country.

      That said, why is National kicking the bulldog sleeping peacefully on the front porch? They don’t need this. That type of bs is best left to the Left.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  August 28, 2018

        I don’t know about US law, but UK law says that someone cannot benefit financially from a crime.

        I don’t care whether this woman comes here or not, but that may well be what the MP is thinking of.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  August 28, 2018

          It’s true, PDTs; it’s illegal to cash in on a crime.If you murder someone, you can’t inherit from them.

          It’s also true that people imprisoned for serious crimes often can’t have visas to visit other countries.

          My brother has one conviction for possession of marijuana, which is enough to keep him out of the US. Chelsea Manning has a much more serious conviction than that.

    • Corky

       /  August 28, 2018

      Farrar might like to consider who’ll protect us should the Chinese decide to invade from an Island base. It certainly wont be our armed services.

      • Blazer

         /  August 28, 2018

        as if China would need to invade NZ…they are and can just buy the place..ask Sir Billy ,we run an ‘open’ economy..for sale to the highest bidder.

  2. Geoffrey

     /  August 28, 2018

    The same thought process should apply to Jane Fonda whose actions in Vietnam lead to several POWs getting severely beaten. She claims now that she was a naive young thing so her activities then do not now count. Tell that to the even younger US conscripts who were vilified by her.

    • PDB

       /  August 28, 2018

      Does she have a conviction though?

    • Blazer

       /  August 28, 2018

      making shit up…’ Jane Fonda whose actions in Vietnam lead to several POWs getting severely beaten. ‘…produce your evidence…Fonda was right..senseless ,unnecessary war that the U.S LOST.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  August 28, 2018

        She was not convicted of a crime, as far as I know, and I believe that she was wilfully misrepresented. Blazer will be able to confirm this if it’s true.

      • High Flying Duck

         /  August 28, 2018

        Rumoured and denied…

        “In Hanoi, Fonda also met with seven American POWs and later said they asked her to tell their friends and family to support presidential candidate George McGovern; they feared they’d never be freed during a Richard Nixon administration. Rumors spread and still persist that she betrayed them by accepting secret notes and then turning them over to the North Vietnamese. The POWs who were there have denied that this ever occurred.

        But the action that still enrages veterans most was that photograph of her with North Vietnamese troops on an antiaircraft gun that would have been used to shoot down American planes. This, probably more than anything, earned her the nickname “Hanoi Jane.””

        Full article gives a good run-down:
        https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/retropolis/wp/2017/09/18/how-jane-fondas-1972-trip-to-north-vietnam-earned-her-the-nickname-hanoi-jane/?utm_term=.b2a2013334c2

        • Blazer

           /  August 28, 2018

          says it all…attn Geoffrey …peanut..’The POWs who were there have denied that this ever occurred.’

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  August 28, 2018

            Well, they’d know. They can’t all be covering up, It isn’t something that could be covered up, anyway,

  3. NOEL

     /  August 28, 2018

    Nah Hanoi Jane and Manning are different
    Serious character issues
    You can’t be granted a visa if you:
    have ever been convicted of an offence for which you were sentenced to a term of imprisonment of 5 years or more

    What was Manning? 7 years?

    • High Flying Duck

       /  August 28, 2018

      35 years. The sentence was commuted by Barack Obama to 7 years, mostly time served, but she was not pardoned.
      Her sentence was appealed and she lost.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  August 28, 2018

        The not benefitting financially from a crime applies in the US, and I think here, but I had trouble finding what the NZ situation is.

      • NOEL

         /  August 28, 2018

        Correct HFD. She doesnt pass the Character Test so like all others she should be denied entry.

  4. Blazer

     /  August 28, 2018

    how long did Oliver North get?

  5. robertguyton

     /  August 28, 2018

    lprent@TS
    As No Right Turn says:
    “Compare and contrast

    Bridges backs free speech for far-right writers banned from Auckland Council venues, New Zealand Herald, 9 July 2018:
    National leader Simon Bridges says two Canadian far-right writers …
    …I (Simon) think freedom of speech was important”

    And:
    “National is calling on the Government to bar ex-US army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning from visiting the country next month.
    National wants Chelsea Manning barred from New Zealand, Stuff, 28 August 2018:”

    http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2018/08/compare-and-contrast.html

  6. artcroft

     /  August 28, 2018

    While I’m absolutely for free speech in this case given the tensions and risk of trauma to sensitive individuals and the Western Alliance, I believe it is appropriate to deny Manning a platform. I further believe that if you can’t accept my point of view, then you must be a horrible person and probably a racist as well. That is all. Thank you.

  7. David

     /  August 28, 2018

    I thinks he/she should come and speak after all he/she did expose Trump hater CIA chief Brennan and Clapper as lying to congress and the American people about the industrial scale spying Obama sanctioned on the American people.
    Dont know what gender as not sure if has had his courting tackle lopped off yet.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  August 28, 2018

      She wears dresses and has tits, she is a girl.

      • sorethumb

         /  August 28, 2018

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  August 28, 2018

          That’s a man in drag, not someone who’s had a sex change.

          • Pink David

             /  August 28, 2018

            Manning has not had a sex change. He is a man wearing a dress and makeup.

            • Gezza

               /  August 28, 2018

              Taking female hormone treatment I believe. Hasn’t had the gender reassignment surgery yet though. So basically physiologically a shemale I imagine. One of those gender fluids some feminists might be opposed to using their female loos.

            • Pink David

               /  August 28, 2018

              “shemale ”

              I google that. I do not think that is what Manning is.

            • Gezza

               /  August 28, 2018

              Yes. I expect it was a bit of a shock. Physically I suspect she looks rather like that: it would depend on how much superstructure the female hormones have generated. From Wikipedia it appears she hasn’t had any gender reassignment surgery yet so still has her male apparatus. The US military accepted she had a valid case for reassignment but freed her from military custody and wiped their hands of paying for it.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  August 29, 2018

              She was booked to have the surgery some time ago.

              She looks like a girl; her hormones are a girl’s hormones; she has boobs….she’s a GIRL.

              I can’t believe that you have never known anyone like this.

      • David

         /  August 28, 2018

        Biologically a bloke so he is a transvestite, ridiculous to call him female he is as much a female as he is a fish.

        • Blazer

           /  August 28, 2018

          you channelling Bush there David!

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  August 29, 2018

          I believe that she has had the surgery, so is no longer a bloke.

          I can’t believe that you don’t know the difference between transgender and transvestite.

    • Pink David

       /  August 28, 2018

      “all he/she did expose Trump hater CIA chief Brennan and Clapper ”

      That was Snowden. The irony being that Snowden did a valuable service to the US public, yet remains in exile in Russia. Manning is a deeply disturbed individual who released information with very limited public value.

      The contrast is telling

      In the later case, no one in power was put at risk, only people in the field, hence he is waltzing around free. In the former case, real players were exposed for lairs they are and so Snowden remains a prisoner.

      • Blazer

         /  August 28, 2018

        being exposed as torturers ,executioners,liars,and aggressive invaders never goes down well when the hearts and minds of the average citizen are at stake…

        • Pink David

           /  August 28, 2018

          ” torturers ,executioners,liars,and aggressive invaders ”

          Let me guess, you only found out about the invasion of Iraq after reading the classified documents Manning leaked.

          The most amusing part of the leaks he propagated was all the diplomatic cables describing in great detail what a horror the Cuban health system is for Cubans. Funny that did not get reported very widely.

  8. High Flying Duck

     /  August 28, 2018

    No problem with it myself, but can understand the National position.
    She was convicted and sentenced to a 35 year prison term for theft & espionage.
    It’s hardly apples with apples.
    The Nat position is about letting convicted felons in vs free speech.

    • Blazer

       /  August 28, 2018

      National have such high standards.
      Btw does convicted felon Sir Douglas Graham still have his…knighthood? 🙂

      • High Flying Duck

         /  August 28, 2018

        It’s not about standards it is about entry rules to the country.
        I hope they let her in. She’s hardly an ongoing threat. But she’s been sentenced to more jail time than a lot of people denied entry to NZ.
        And I’m not going to bite on Doug Graham. You have a myopia about him that is pathetic.

        • Blazer

           /  August 28, 2018

          your very own words speak volumes…’The Nat position is about letting convicted felons in vs free speech.’.

          Nothing pathetic about pointing out such flexible principles.

  9. robertguyton

     /  August 28, 2018

    Let’s hear what this person has to say. Is there the suspicion of any threat of public rioting following any talk by Manning? If so, make provision for that and Nat’s, you are two-faced on the issue of freedom of speech, but it’s okay; we all expected you would be.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  August 28, 2018

      You seem to have missed the point that people with long prison sentences can’t come in anyway, without special permission. If she was a burglar who’d done a seven-stretch, she couldn’t come here. That’s the law as it stands.

  10. Alan Wilkinson

     /  August 28, 2018

    Ban the banners. Don’t let politicians decide who can come and go. That’s a job for the law and the courts not political posturing. Stupid effort by National.

    • robertguyton

       /  August 28, 2018

      What will Don Brash say?
      What will the team who threatened to take Phil Goff to court, say (Trotter et al)?
      Fun.
      & games!

      • robertguyton

         /  August 28, 2018

        Edit: Oh, I see (below). Good stuff! Mind you, Brash’s response was…wan.

  11. At least they are being consistent.

    • High Flying Duck

       /  August 28, 2018

      I’d forgotten about the Wolf of Wall Street coming. It would be a stretch to say CM is any worse than him. Mandela is a different category.

  12. robertguyton

     /  August 28, 2018

    This brain-fart from National over Manning is JUST A DISTRACTION FROM THEIR OTHER BRAINFART; BRIDGES’ HUNT FOR THE MENTALLY-ILL LEAKER!!!

    • High Flying Duck

       /  August 28, 2018

      Are you sure you’re OK Robert? Your postings are getting more and more beffudled.
      Did you eat a dodgy lentil?
      Did you send some addled texts about your condition to the speaker of the house among others?

      • robertguyton

         /  August 28, 2018

        Well, for starters, I prefer the traditional spelling of “befuddled” but aside from that, I’m good. The Nat’s, otoh, seem befuddled, donchthink? At sixes and sevens, arse over kite, stupefied…

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  August 28, 2018

          This was stupid. Unfortunately not the first stupid position taken on Bridge’s watch.

  13. duperez

     /  August 28, 2018

    Have I got this right? The National Party wants Chelsea Manning banned because of traitorous behaviour?

    Wow, the reception awaiting any caucus member involved in traitorous behaviour will be a good watch!

  14. NOEL

     /  August 28, 2018

    No Duperez. She does not meet the Good Character Test having a conviction of more than 5 years. If the Minister gives her a dispensation it will mock the rules that everyone else is judged by.

    • Gezza

       /  August 28, 2018

      No it won’t. The Minister can grant those entirely at their own discretion & there are no criteria or precedents that must be followed. Every case would be considered on their own as the Minister at the time sees fit. If Woodhouse would turn it down, it doesn’t mean another Minister also must.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  August 28, 2018

        What about the not profiting from a crime law ?

        No matter what one may think about an individual, that law is as it is. If someone’s paid to talk about a crime, that may well be classed as profiting by it.

        I don’t give a damn whether she comes here or not, but would if laws were tweaked in individual cases because of personal preference. Other people have been refused entry, like Mike Tyson and the bloke who was Rihanna’s boyfriend and bashed her up (someone Brown ?)

        • Gezza

           /  August 28, 2018

          I don’t actually care one way or the other whether her entry is approved or declined. My assessment, however, and contrary to Woodhouse’s assertion, is that allowing her entry won’t make one iota of difference to our relationship with the US.

  15. A flip from the left.

    • Pink David

       /  August 28, 2018

      Golriz Ghahraman once again showing she has no idea what free speech is.

  16. duperez

     /  August 28, 2018

    Ah, the old ‘Good Character Test’. When push comes to shove and they’re sitting in the room in discussion with the inquiry result Woodhouse will probably use that expression.

  17. Geoffrey Monks

     /  August 28, 2018

    For Blazer from peanut… I guess it largely boils down to how one can condemn a certain type of behaviour in one war but not in another.

  18. Geoffrey Monks

     /  August 28, 2018

    How do you suppose Hanoi Jane would have been regarded if she had properganderised for the Nazis – like say Lord Hawhaw?

    • Blazer

       /  August 28, 2018

      Anyone who does not toe the line when nations go to war is demonised,no matter the justification for..war.

      Gt Britain declared war on Germany for invading..Poland…go figure!

      • Pink David

         /  August 28, 2018

        “Gt Britain declared war on Germany for invading..Poland…go figure!”

        err, are not aware of the Anglo-Polish Agreement? It was signed two days after the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact.

        Of course, the UK technically should have also declared war on the Soviet Union as well given their own invasion of Poland, but such things happen.

        • Blazer

           /  August 28, 2018

          what was the benefit of this agreement to the Anglo side?

          • Gezza

             /  August 28, 2018

            It was a miscalculation by Chamberlain. Post WW1 Britain & France were becoming increasingly concerned about a resurgent Germany expanding and becoming a threat to them and their interests – as it had already gobbled up first Austria and then Sudetenland/Czechoslovakia. They thought the threat of war by both superpowers would be enough to stop Hitler. It wasn’t.

            • Pink David

               /  August 28, 2018

              If they had move quickly enough, they would have headed Hitler off early. There wasn’t, understandably enough, any appetite to be aggressive and the French had bet the house on the maginot line.

  19. Geoffrey Monks

     /  August 28, 2018

    Nations never wage war with the intention of losing. Citizens of a nation at war that deliberately detract from its capacity to prevail are traitors and deserve to be condemned as such – regardless of how they might feel when they wake up to their perfidy.

    • Blazer

       /  August 28, 2018

      Nations go to war for resources…the pen is mightier than the sword…and the bankers have the…pen.

    • Blazer

       /  August 29, 2018

      So the invasion,death and destruction of Iraq on the basis that it was said to have WMD is good enough for you ,regardless of things like …facts.

  20. Trevors_elbow

     /  August 28, 2018

    Let Manning into speak. Who cares. Woodhouse should have not spoken out… pointless and counter productive statement.

    Manning is a footnote in history and will end up as a nothing giving koha talks to deranged anarchists, lefties and people needing medication in a few years.

  21. robertguyton

     /  August 28, 2018

    Support for Golriz

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1808/S00358/coalition-condemns-campaign-to-bar-chelsea-manning.htm

    “We agree with the reported comments Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman that Mr Woodhouse’s campaign for censorship is offensive. New Zealanders should not be denied an opportunity to hear a personal account of military use of power, even by an ally. The Free Speech Coalition hopes Ms Ghahraman continues to support the principle of free speech, no matter the politics of the individual speakers.”

    • From above:

      However Golriz is quite selective in her support for free speech – she approves if she agrees with the speaker, she opposes if she disagrees.

      • Corky

         /  August 29, 2018

        ”Chelsea isn’t saying hateful things & the call is to bar her”

        Correct. She just hates her country. I wonder if that’s crossed Golriz’s mind?

        • Gezza

           /  August 29, 2018

          Incorrect. She loves her country. It was what its military was doing that made her dunnit.

        • Blazer

           /  August 29, 2018

          or maybe she loves her country ,but hates political expediency that has fatal consequences.

    • seer

       /  August 29, 2018

      The statement “We agree with the reported comments Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman that Mr Woodhouse’s campaign for censorship is offensive. New Zealanders should not be denied an opportunity to hear a personal account of military use of power, even by an ally. The Free Speech Coalition hopes Ms Ghahraman continues to support the principle of free speech, no matter the politics of the individual speakers.” seems to me as much a reminder to Golriz as it is support. A green apologist might miss that.

  22. Some of us don’t cherry pick free speech. Some politicians do, which is a concern.

  23. robertguyton

     /  August 29, 2018

    Woodhouse wants Manning excluded because she has a criminal conviction, as does Woodhouse – drunk-driving, apparently…
    Keeping Stock; remember that disgraced blogger?, says:
    “I drove drunk innumerable times when I was the age Woodhouse was when he got his conviction.”
    It’s all getting a bit…sick, over on Kiwiblog and across the Right-wing chatteratti:
    who do you support?
    Woodhouse?
    Manning?
    Tony Keeping Stock?

  24. Blazer

     /  August 29, 2018

    Woodhead has sawdust for brains.

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