The attack on Stephenson’s credibility by the Lieutenant General’s comments in the wake of Stephenson’s Metro expose that highlighted NZ SAS involvement in handing over Afghan civilians to known torture units is an active tactic to attack a journalist rather than some simple mistake.
The NZDF didn’t make a mistake, they were attempting to discredit Stephenson rather than engage with his accusations that the NZDF was culpable in breaching the Geneva contention.
This matters because Stephenson has been one of the few voices in the NZ Media who has challenged the NZDFs sanitized version of what we have been doing in Afghanistan. Sadly much of the mainstream media in NZ have been willingly manipulated and played by the NZDFs spin doctoring as has been disclosed by Nicky Hager in his most recent book ‘Other Peoples Wars’.
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.
…so the NZDFs history of playing the msm is well documented, and that needs to be understood as the context to their attempt at discrediting Stephenson. It was dirty propaganda at its most cynical. The NZDF knew Stephenson was right, what they needed to do after such a devastating critique of torture allegations was denounce Stephenson rather than admit any of his claims.
When the military are actively discrediting Journalists with lies to hide what they are really doing in a war none of us have sanctioned they should be up on Treason charges rather than Defamation.