So the SIS broke the law (again) by spying on a journalist exposing NZDF abuse of power.
What does this mean for New Zealanders?
We all agreed post 9-11 to allow our Governments to ramp up powers to protect us from a terrorist attack of that magnitude, but who has the State actually been going after since 9-11?
We now know that the GCSB, SIS, Police Intelligence Unit and a plethora of Government agencies illegally spied on New Zealanders or circumvented transparency by hiring private spies to spy on Māori protesting big oil, Tuhoe, Greenpeace, MANA, the Green Party, Nicky Hager, Me and Muslims while they managed to miss an actual white supremacist terrorist who plotted an atrocity on NZ soil for two years, who had multiple complaints made about him and who crossed the border half a dozen times.
I’ve always believed that the enormous powers the State had amassed for itself had checks and balances in place to protect us as citizens from abuses of power.
I was wrong.
In my case against the NZ Police for involving me in their flawed prosecution against Hager, I’ve seen how utterly thread bare the so called checks and balances actually are.
This is the Intelligence apparatus of NZ – SIS (Secret Intelligence Services), the GCSB (Government Communications Security Bureau), the NSG (National Security Group), the CNSN (Cabinet National Security Committee), the ODESC (Officials’ Committee for Domestic and External Security Coordination), the SIB (Security and Intelligence Board), the CTCC (Counter-Terrorism Coordinating Committee), the NICC ( National Intelligence Coordination Committee) the IAD (Intelligence and Assessments Directorate), the NRU (National Risk Unit) and the NSPD (National Security Policy Directorate), NZDF military intelligence and the Police Intelligence Unit.
These agencies cost anywhere between 300m-500m each year, are we actually any safer?
There are no checks and balances in place to prevent vast abuses of power by these agencies, the only way to hold them to account is the person targeted has the tenacity to fight it on their own. Kim Dotcom, Nicky Hager and my own case where the police are trying to set a precedent to gain secret trials using secret evidence, are the only places where this fight back is occurring and that’s all fine and good while we are in a benign environment, but if push ever came to shove, the speed of transformation from a democracy to Police State is far quicker and easier than most New Zealanders appreciate.
The Police State is perpetually waiting in the shadows and those they wish to control have no comprehension of how large and powerful that shadow is. You won’t appreciate it until you actually face the beast and by then, it will be too late.
Thankfully we have people like Dotcom and Hager who are prepared to fight and remind us how the individual can stand against the State.