Hollow Laughter, Mixed With Tears.

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They all laughed at Christopher Columbus

When he said the world was round

They all laughed when Edison recorded sound.

“They All Laughed”, Ira and George Gershwin, 1937

 

THERE IS absolutely no humour in the tragic sequence of events that unfolded in the New Lynn mall on Friday. Perhaps the only positive aspect of this latest terrorist attack is that, to date, the only fatality has been the terrorist himself. There was plenty of heroism in the bloody aisles of that Countdown supermarket, however, and plenty of cool professionalism also. On a shaky cellphone video, now viewed by millions, the clearly audible sequence of rapid-fire pistol shots indicated an officer determined to bring the Isis-inspired, knife-wielding perpetrator’s stabbing-spree to a halt.

Why quote the Gershwin brothers, then? What is there to laugh at?

TDB Recommends NewzEngine.com

The black humour of this situation derives not from the terrorist attack, but from a review of the way elements of the New Zealand Left have, by turns, scoffed at the very idea that terrorism might constitute a genuine threat to this country’s national security; castigated the national security apparatus for failing to prevent the atrocity of 15 March 2019; and then, reversing direction once again, cautioned against an excessively draconian response to the events of the past few days.

One of the reasons the New Lynn terrorist, Ahamed Aathill Mohamed Samsudeen, was not safely incarcerated on Friday afternoon, is because, as the judge overseeing an earlier trial pointed out, securing a conviction on a charge of planning and/or preparing to carry out a terrorist attack in New Zealand is just too difficult. Only when an act of terrorism has been committed does the law have anything useful to contribute. The judge’s speculation that this weakness in New Zealand’s anti-terrorist legislation might turn out to be its “Achilles Heel” has been dramatically vindicated.

Why nobody spotted this deficiency in the Terrorist Suppression Act 2002, which was passed by the New Zealand Parliament in response to the 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington, remains a mystery. It is, after all, rather difficult to imagine how terrorism might be suppressed if, when preparations for launching a terrorist attack are detected, the loose wording of the Act effectively prevents the authorities from intervening until after the event had taken place. They would have been better advised to entitle the legislation the “Shutting the Stable Door Act”.

It took the curious case of the alleged Urewera military training camps to fully expose the inadequacies of the Terrorism Suppression Act. As things turned out it proved to be next-to-useless in dealing with activities suggestive of a terrorist campaign in its preparatory stages. Alerted to the existence of armed groups engaging in military-style training exercises in the Urewera mountains, the Police mounted an extensive surveillance operation culminating in the arrest of 17 individuals in October 2007.

There were many reasons why the Police’s “Operation Eight” failed. The inadequacy of the Terrorism Suppression Act was one of them; the excessively intimidatory raid on the little town of Ruatoki another. Critical to the whole exercise’s failure, however, was the extraordinarily successful campaign waged on behalf of the defendants by the Far Left.

At the heart of this campaign was the carefully cultivated perception that the whole exercise was farcical – a bit of a joke. New Zealand just wasn’t the sort of place where terrorism was seriously contemplated. The Police had grossly overreacted to what was no more than a bit of harmless play-acting. The only people terrified by Operation Eight were the traumatised Māori residents of Ruatoki. Those in serious search of terrorism need look no further than the racist and colonialist depredations of the New Zealand state.

They all laughed at Police Commissioner Howard Broad and his damned-if-he-did, damned-if-he-didn’t, predicament. The nation’s politicians, however, were quick to draw the obvious lessons.

What the Urewera debacle made clear was that not only will intervention before the fact of a terrorist attack expose the national security apparatus – and its political masters – to the ruthless excoriation of the Far Left, but also, crucially, to serious criticism from the news media. As the Far left critics of “Operation Eight” proved, pre-emptive policing is all-too-easily presented as the action of a “police state” over-eager to put its new-found powers to the test.

Small wonder, then, that both major parties became extremely wary of displaying too much interest in correcting the all-too-obvious defects in the Terrorism Suppression Act.

How differently New Zealanders might have responded to “Operation Eight’s” videos of armed individuals moving stealthily through the Urewera bush if they had been recorded subsequent to the terrible events of 15 March 2019. By then, of course, the notion that domestic terrorism was a bit of a joke had been tragically and decisively dispelled. Fortunately for the Left, those twelve-year-old Urewera images had been largely forgotten – along with the Far Left’s insistence that they conveyed nothing sinister.

Indeed, within days of the Christchurch Mosque Massacre, the Far Left’s position had changed dramatically. Not only was the threat of terrorism dangerously real, but it was also latent in a colonialist Pakeha population fatally tainted with both the legacy and the actuality of “white supremacy”. The cry from the Far Left, now, was not that the national security apparatus was too heavy handed, but that it was not heavy-handed enough. Why had the SIS not subjected the Alt-Right and militant ethno-nationalist groups to the same oppressive surveillance it reserved for Muslims?

The Māori Party demanded to know why the Police and the SIS weren’t working together to root out the white supremacist threat. Radical leftists called for the curtailment of “hate speech” – especially against New Zealand’s Muslim population. The Labour Government promised to oblige.

Which was odd. Because long before Brenton Tarrant unleashed terror in Christchurch, Ahamed Aathill Mohamed Samsudeen had been giving the government of Jacinda Ardern nightmares. Ever since 2016, three years before Tarrant’s attack, New Zealand’s national security apparatus had been grappling with the clear and present danger of a dangerously radicalised Islamist who made no secret of his support for and admiration of the actions of the murderous Islamic State. If Tarrant slipped past the SIS, GCSB and Police Intelligence watchers, it was for the very good reason that they had another predator in their sights. What’s more, they could not be absolutely sure that Samsudeen was the only Isis-inspired “lone wolf” in the forest.

George and Ira Gershwin’s 1937 hit, “They All laughed”, concludes with the lines:

Hee, hee, hee!
Let’s at the past laugh
Ha, ha, ha!
Who’s got the last laugh now?

Faced with the Left’s cynical gyrations on the subject of terrorism, and whether or not it poses a threat to ordinary New Zealanders (like Muslims at Friday prayers, or the seven unsuspecting Kiwis stabbed in the aisles of their local supermarket as they innocently shopped for groceries on a Friday afternoon) the answer to the question “Who’s got the last laugh, now?” offers a variety of answers.

First and foremost, the last laugh belongs to those who, fourteen years ago, attempted to protect the New Zealand public from terrorism, only to discover that, in the absence of the evidence only an actual terrorist atrocity can supply, the ability of the national security apparatus to pre-empt such horror is legally and politically compromised. Indeed, even in the aftermath of an all-too-real terrorist attack, the judicial and bureaucratic machinery of the state proved criminally inadequate to the task of keeping New Zealanders safe.

Also entitled to a final, grim chuckle, are those stalwarts of the Left who never wavered in their conviction that the infliction of violence for political purposes must never be treated as a purely tactical issue. The Far Left’s argument that: in one context, training with weapons in the bush can be forgiven as harmless play-acting; but, in another, treated as evidence of the criminal plans and preparations of murderous white supremacist terrorists; must be rejected as ideologically-driven moral relativism of the worst kind.

Finally, a rough grunt of vindication is due to all those who have argued consistently that no matter what the location: Central Christchurch or New Lynn; the paying of History’s debts with innocent blood is always and everywhere a crime.

But, when these principled New Zealanders laugh at the Far Left’s tawdry equivocations on who is, and who isn’t, a terrorist; that laughter will not be light or mirthful. It will be hollow, filled with rage, and mixed with tears.

 

77 COMMENTS

  1. I still do not understand why he could be not held under Mental Health Grounds the man was clearly not well, he had just broken a prison officers jaw ?

    Something is seriously not right somewhere.

  2. Great column Chris!

    Oh and I am reliably informed there are about 40 other individuals in the same category as Samsudeen.

    So watch this space!

  3. https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/auckland-mall-terrorist-forged-medical-documents-boasted-about-duping-immigration-officials/P4TXIN7YOI2OENGEKTWRCV2AD4/

    It shows how easy it is to forge documents to get into NZ, this person arrived on a student visa – he stopped his student course after 1 month in NZ and refused to leave using forged documents. The IPT repeatedly kept him in the country with multiple appeals against other government departments recommendations such as police and immigration officials.

    “The New Lynn mall terrorist forged medical records and statements from his family to bolster his claim for refugee status, which was revoked later when the bogus documents were discovered by police investigating his support for Islamic State.

    And a former workmate of the 32-year-old, who stabbed and wounded several shoppers at a New Lynn supermarket on Friday, says he would boast about duping immigration officials.

    “New Zealand Government don’t know about my visa,” the ex-colleague said the would-be terrorist told him.”

    “His original claim for asylum was rejected by Immigration New Zealand (INZ), but Samsudeen was successful in appealing the decision to the Immigration Protection Tribunal (IPT) in December 2013.

    Among his claims, Samsudeen said he and his father were attacked, kidnapped and tortured because of their political background in Sri Lanka and while the IPT considered aspects of his account were “superficially unsatisfactory”, the panel thought he was credible.”

    “During the review of the individual’s refugee status, it was established that the documentation he had submitted in his refugee claim was fraudulent. This was on the basis that evidence found on his laptop by police indicated the individual had manufactured written statements from family members in support of his claim and embellished a medical report to align with his claims,” a spokesperson for INZ confirmed in a written statement to Herald questions.”

    Sadly when government officials try to do their jobs and deport fraudsters, the IPT seems to be the go to (funded by taxpayers) to keep violent criminals and fraudsters in NZ. 1/3 of the immigration officials recommendations are overturned by the IPT. The process also keeps the applicants free in NZ for years to continue to victimise others and laugh at the NZ hobbit system of justice, while all the various lengthy, expensive, appeals are heard.

    • Great comment, if this scumbag had of been a immigrant living in Australia he would have been stripped of Citizenship immediately with no appeals from crooked Lawyers & jailed & deported along time ago? There are plenty of other assholes like this disgusting man who purposely immigrated here to take advantage of our Countries humanity & see NZ & NZers as a soft touch to be taken advantage off & exploited! The NZ Govt needs to toughen up the Immigration laws & immediately change the Terrorism & Criminal Law & make it exactly the same as the Australian 501 law that deports any Criminals not born there, holding then in jail until their deported? The Legal rort which these Immigrants use to remain here needs to be defunded, as too many dodgy Lawyers are gaming the system to enrich themselves & enabling dangerous crimms to stay in this Country? There is blood on the hands of the Lawyers who kept this Terrorist in NZ, their just as guilty as this lunatic & should be disbarred! And another thing, why did they stop him leaving the Country to join ISIS in Syria, they should have given him a one way ticket to piss off & die, it would have saved the Cops the expense of shooting his ass! The stupidity of letting bastards like this wannabe ISIS asshole, & waiting for him to commit a murderous crime before taking any action against him is insane!

      • The other concern is that it becomes a catch 22, if a person declares they are affiliated to ISIS, then they can probably then claim they should be a ‘protected person’ as most countries don’t want these people operating freely in their countries. Do we want this to become the standard way to stay in NZ, student visa, followed by joining ISIS (or some other violation), makes you a protected person?

        Maybe letting him board the plane to Singapore and join ISIS, would have been the best for his human rights after all?

        Not sure the answer of allowing him to attempt to kill ‘kiwi scums’ in NZ is any less of a human right violation to others, than putting him in prison for most of his life in NZ due to his beliefs, than letting him go on his merry way to help ISIS as he wanted to years before.

        As well as the danger he posed, allowing this type of person to abuse the NZ system, taking housing and resources in NZ from more deserving people who either want to be here, or have nowhere else to go as Kiwi citizens here.

        Likewise questions should be asked (but won’t) how a celebrity refugee who claims refuge in OZ, then can come to NZ on a literary conference and reclaim refugee status here. Isn’t the law you have can only claim asylum in the first place you claim it?, now we have people cherry picking the asylum system, who are personally picked up by the Greens (and fellow dual citizen Iranian) at the airport. Seems to be misusing the refugee system and setting more and more precedents, against those who really need it.

  4. Not directly related to the.latest incidence of ‘ terrorism’ but highly indicative of how socieety has been (and still is) manipulated comes the massive u-turn reported on interest.co.nz:

    ‘And we should note that News Corp, long obsessed with the ABC in Australia, has done an about-face after years of casting doubt on climate change and attacking politicians and other media who favoured corrective action, are now planning an editorial campaign advocating a carbon-neutral future! They are sensing they have lost this ‘conservative battle’. This will leave its ‘after-dark’ commentators high-and-dry in Australia, with only anti-vaxxing Covid-denial left to prosecute.’

    So it goes. Vested interest, incompetence and denial of reality are prime driver’s of policy.

  5. I’ve never understood why the Urawera lot were dismissed so casually. Full blown weapons training and spouting ethno nationalist dogma is just not a normal hobby. Didn’t some of them go on to plant “bombs” in a Wellington cinema aimed at terrorising the theatre goers. These religious fundamentalist, neo tribalist and “blood and soil” types, including the Maori ethno nationalists should be taken seriously.
    People say all sorts of things (to be provocative perhaps?) so it’s not always possible to sort out the genuinely dangerous from words alone. Making actual threats of, and preparing plans for, violence would be a giant red flag you would think.

  6. Opinions are not evidence. If it is believed that a terrorist attack was limited by supplies to expand the brutality, then please, collect the evidence in real time and why you think that. If you don’t have any evidence then real time surveillance isn’t worth the paper it’s written on, and you should reconsider your stance on that opinion, like maybe even without the Eastern front you couldn’t appreciably increase the Afrika Korps to defeat the combined American British forces in the region.

  7. It’s always funny how the resources are always available for heavily armed men to swoop down in a helicopter to take out a dangerous criminal like Kim Dotcom on trumped up charges after illegal spying on him, with the aim to fix any legal & legislative issues in post production (similar to raids on Nicky Hager), but they couldn’t find a way to deal with a known terrorist threat.

    The same government that was supposedly dealing with this threat was pretty quick to brush aside normal democratic processes to ram through poorly thought out legislation that turned a lot of previously law abiding firearms owners in to criminals, tarring them with the same brush as Tarrant.

    Unfortunately for everyone, you reap what you sow & the backlash is not looking pretty.

    • +1 exactly. In Covid, labour eventually muddled through.

      Will they make the right decisions this time, or fall into the woke trap that left the loopholes open at the border last attack.

      In addition to the border, will Labour put more support behind a better system (such as the INZ who wanted to deport S and do a review into why IPT are stopping dangerous and high needs people from being deported) to keep everyone safe in NZ or just focus on the niche selected groups that seem to be the only ones that get focus (and copious amounts of revenue) for safety in NZ.

      Nobody wants NZ to be full of criminals in jail in NZ with new terror laws, they want to stop unwanted people who can’t cope here and become or are violent and criminally inclined, getting into NZ in the first place.

      • Machine guns may not be a human right but they do both protect as well as take away human rights. They are just tools. Your rights will be taken or given as your Government see fit and if you can not defend those rights, there is nothing you can do about it.

          • Sorry Sam, there are plenty of predators in New Zealand & they’ll eat you whole given half a chance. Many of them walk on two legs, wear suits & love to devour sleepy hobbits for breakfast.

              • Sam, I live a privileged & entitled life, opportunities & advantages drop in my lap, I can walk the streets without fear, I live in a warm, comfortable freehold home, eat healthy & nutritious food, have relative job security, health insurance (though I rarely get sick) etc. I am lucky.

                The New Zealand I grew up in was a land of opportunity & adventure, there was wilderness to explore & new experiences to have. I walked or rode my bike to school, went exploring by myself or with friends, I had an active, interesting & secure childhood. It was safe. People owned their own homes & had more control over their lives.

                But now I look around, see beggars on the streets, drug dealers operating openly, Police & criminals shooting up our quiet neighbourhood, violence, poverty, homelessness, people trapped in debt spirals or working multiple jobs, all to feed the ravenous jaws of the banks, corporations & landlords. This is no longer the New Zealand I once knew. I still love New Zealand & wouldn’t choose to live anywhere else, but this country is becoming increasingly hard & mean, with not a lot of optimism to be found.

                Things are generally good for me, hopefully they are good for you, but they could definitely be better for many other Kiwis.

          • If you lived in Afghanistan, which would you prefer to live under the Taliban or the US led occupation? Or would you just vote for someone different? The people of Afghanistan have the same inalienable rights as you do, will their vote protect those rights?

            Can you vote for a housing solution? Feeding the hungry? Freedom from Police brutality? An end to poverty? An end to inequality? For environmental protection? Clean water?

            Of course you can, how’s working out though? Do we live in an utopia society because we have some small input into those who rule us? Do we really have a choice in who really rules over us? Or just the illusion of choice?

            • Deep. But to answer your question I would rather wear a burka than be bombed to smithereens by a drone just going about my daily life. That is not way to elicit social change and this was clear by what has happened in Iraq, where it turned out the devil they knew, Saddam, was far better than the one they didn’t.

              • The correct answer is probably to get out & find a place where you can live the life you choose & be respected for who you are, as neither of the other options offers much hope for the future. Both “solutions” are merely different groups using violent means to secure power & resources, with little regard for individual lives. There is too much violence in the world, yet often violence needs to be countered by an opposing force.

      • Oh and as to running the country, no thanks. I have too much honesty & integrity to play the political machinations required for party politics in New Zealand. I have despised politicians & the easy way lies flow from their lips, from a young age, as well as the inefficient way committees generally work (or don’t work), to want to join that circus. People have in the past suggested I should run for the regional council, but it is not a game I would ever willingly play.

  8. Well said Trotter. An incisive exposé of the extent to which identity politics has eroded our ability to think clearly and act accordingly, and the consequences for all of us.

  9. Peeeowwww!!…and its a ricochet from our long distance columnist.

    Blaming the “Far Left” seriously for anything in 2021, or ’07, is laughable, particularly given the author’s cyclical disparagement of ‘ageing marxist greybeards’ lamenting over their beer!

    Fortunately there is still a small (and diverse) cohort of people in NZ society with the skill and courage to tackle issues like Nicky Hager’s Police break in, Jon Stephensons victimisation by NZ Defence, Armed Police squads in South Auckland streets, and yes the raid on Ruatoki. By the way, neo Nazis have held training camps with arms in the South Island too, without an Operation Eight style raid being involved as far as I know.

    The State Security forces, terrorism, and legislation are nuanced–no crude one size fits all argument or answer exists. So questioning the SIS etc. for their lack of attention to white supremacists is not contradictory to suspicion of the state overdoing things in terms of “Minority Report” style thought crimes–(detaining people for what they might do, or what they say, or read).

  10. Chris 100%…..I so totally agree with you.

    I was always amazed how the politicially correct thing to think about the Urewera episode was Cops picking on the left (which I conside rmyself to be). I am glad you have brough it up again in the context of how things have unfolded.

  11. Great column Chris. As usual the far left take all sorts of positions depending on their politics.
    This is the same as the Maori Party wanting a stasi of sorts against white supremacy.

  12. Chris, in the 1990s SAS trainers were teaching far right political groups to use automatic weapons in combat situations. You do not see that as a problem, because they were folk of your own ethnicity and political persuasion. Our people have always claimed the right of self defence and that is not going to change, so you will just have to get used to the idea. Terrorism is a different story. Terrorism is actually the kind of conduct in which you were engaged in Afghanistan. Pulling people out of their houses in the middle of the night and summarily executing them. We reject terrorism. You don’t. That is where we differ.

    • Any media reports or official documents on the SAS training far right political groups in the 1990s?
      And how do you KNOW Chris knew of this training and did not object?

      And I’m certain Chris was never in a death squad or in Afghanistan.

      • I remember reading an article that claimed this. The “journalist” interviewed a so called ex-SAS man, well at least he claimed to be, said he was training NZ nationalists to protect them selves from the Government, who he thought was becoming authoritarian. He also claimed that their organization wasn’t racist, and they were all just patriots. This was in Iain Wisharts magazine, which I forget the name of, but rest assured it was full of rightwing conspiracy articles. Normally, if someone claims to be SAS in public, then its pretty much a guarantee, that they have read a book about the history of the unit, possibly a book on training exercises and drills, and never actually been in the unit.

        • Ken Shirley of the ACT party was involved in organising these camps through the Forest Owners Association. They were officially sanctioned by the SAS and there was absolutely no suggestion that they were “anti-government”. Attendees were recruited from the citadels of capital – merchant banks, forest owners etc.
          So the presumption of people like Chris Trotter is that it is right and proper for the junior servants of capital to receive military training in anticipation of some possible social convulsion, but criminal for rural Maori to take similar steps towards protecting their own communities.

      • Yes, there were media reports of the SAS training camps for right wing paramilitaries, as a consequence of which the practice was brought to a halt.
        I don’t know whether Chris Trotter approved or disapproved at the time.
        I do know that he constantly complains about Maori being trained in the use of firearms, and never brings up the matter of far right paramilitaries being trained by the New Zealand army.
        Even though Trotter laments the failure of the “men of the west” to continue the fight against the Taliban, and urges the women of Afghanistan to carry on the war on behalf of western powers, I am not suggesting that he personally ever went within a thousand miles of Kabul.
        My comments are directed towards him because he is an apologist and unofficial spokesperson for the colonial regime who studiously avoids any mention of the human rights abuses and war crimes committed by the Five Eyes in Afghanistan.

        • The SAS training Far Right paramilitaries. That’s a pretty big claim, Geoff. Care to back it up with some evidence?

          Additionally, you have only to scroll back through my contributions here and at Bowalley Road, to read many posts condemning the abuses of the US-led, Nato-backed, intervention force in Afghanistan. Some of those posts even condemn the SAS!

          • Chris, the Forest Owners Association and the merchant banks paid the SAS to train these paramilitaries, so you will find evidence in the government accounts, and furthermore these wannabe warriors of colonial capitalism could not resist the temptation to pose for photographs while in camo gear and brandishing automatic weapons kindly supplied by the New Zealand Army. So there is plenty of evidence available if you want to go looking for it. Ken Shirley might even fess up to what went on. At the time, in the mid to late nineties, he seemed quite proud of his paramilitary exploits.
            But the really significant fact is that if the colonial regime is going to have an army of 4000, an army reserve of about half that number, and an indeterminate number of paramilitary supporters, the people of Aotearoa are going to put in place measures for their own self defence, and there is absolutely nothing you can do to stop that.
            You can disingenuously rant on about Urewera “terrorists”, but you are on the losing side in Aotearoa as you were in Afghanistan.
            You declared that the “all important fact” of the Afghanistan war was that the Five Eyes forces had liberated Afghan women. On the strength of that supposedly “all important fact” (which is dubious at best) you are prepared to overlook the dark prison, the death squads, the torture chambers, the massacre of Taliban prisoners and the serial murder of Afghan civilians by Anzac troops.
            Your position on Afghanistan is seriously amoral. Not only that, it is plain stupid. You lost. You deserved to lose. Your fabled “men of the west” will not be able to go back there to cause more death and suffering.
            Your efforts to hold fast to the heritage of colonialism in our country are also doomed. Not even your fine prose can turn the tide of history.

        • “There were media reports of the SAS training camps for right wing paramilitaries”.

          I’ve dug around looking for said media reports, but couldn’t find any. But who knows, all sorts of things appear in the media that appeal to the imaginative mind. Like “Animal brothels are on the rise in Germany” https://www.businessinsider.com.au/bestiality-germany-animal-brothels-2012-2?r=US&IR=T.

          And what about the Alien Autopsy? https://www.deccanchronicle.com/technology/in-other-news/030719/cia-scientist-believed-alien-autopsy-footage-was-real.html

          As for Trotter being “an apologist for the colonialist regime” … I wonder if you need to change the calendar on your wall. We haven’t had a “colonialist regime” in NZ for many a year Geoff.

          • The Realm of New Zealand has the British sovereign at its head, and requires all Members of Parliament to swear allegiance to that person or forgo the right to speak in the House. It is a regime that was imposed by force of British and Australian arms and has never been consented to by the people of Aotearoa.
            You can call that regime anything you like, just as you can call yourself the Pope, but people who deal in facts rather than fantasy know that it is nothing if not colonialist.

            • An interesting position Geoff.

              Most systems of government require politicians to swear allegiance to something or somebody widely respected or revered (e.g. a monarch, a constitution or the Koran). If instead our politicos swore allegiance to (say) a constitution, would that satisfy you? Or would you just shift your argument to emphasize something else?

              And how much influence does our nominal head of state (Liz) have on your daily life or mine? Our laws are made in Wellington, not in Westminster. And you can say anything you like about Liz on facebook, on this blog, or in Stuff ‘n Nonsense. You won’t get a knock on the door from the plods, and you won’t disappear. Go to communist China or Iran or Saudi Arabia and try the same trick – you’ll quickly learn what the word “regime” means. Liz would have to be one of the more benign heads of state I’m aware of.

              As for the supposed lack of consent, what about the Treaty of Waitangi? Which of course was breached grievously by the crown – we all accept this. By accepting treaty settlements, are iwi leaders not implicitly accepting the legitimacy of the “regime”?

              It does seem kinda weird having a symbolic head of state who lives on the other side of the world. But at present I can’t see a better alternative, and I prefer the tried and trusted to Utopian fantasy. The track record of constitutional monarchy shows it to be the best system of government ever discovered, and Liz has carried out her role with rare dignity and wisdom.

              • His Holiness has changed tack, from denying that the Realm of New Zealand is a colonial state to asserting that New Zealand’s colonial regime is “the best system of government ever discovered”.
                That opinion can be taken with a pinch of salt.
                His Holiness avers “Most systems of government require politicians to swear allegiance to something or somebody widely respected or revered (e.g. a monarch, a constitution or the Koran)…”
                If that is the case then I can say that “most systems of government” are as amoral and misguided as His Holiness.
                However Te Rangatiratanga imposes no such requirement. Under rangatiratanga political allegiance is a matter of free choice and personal responsibility.
                His Holiness assures us that “You won’t get a knock on the door from the plods, and you won’t disappear.”
                His Holiness does not get a knock on the door for declaring “Liz has carried out her role with rare dignity and wisdom” but I have received a knock on the door for criticizing her in the course of a telephone conversation, and needed to go as far as the Court of Appeal to have that conviction overturned.
                I have also been imprisoned for refusing to serve in the Crown’s military forces.
                Because His Holiness collaborates with the colonial regime and writes all sorts of specious nonsense in its defence, the regime is well disposed towards his Holiness. But those of us who take a moral and patriotic stand know the reality from our own experience and are not deceived by this nonsense.

                • Ah well you’re right about one thing – we popes are notoriously amoral, I must own it. Especially those Medieval French pontiffs. But I digress.

                  I have to respect your conscientious objection to the Vietnam war – I assume it must have been that war. But that piece of evidence isn’t much use to your “colonialist regime” argument. Frenchmen who refused to fight in Algeria also went to jail.

                  This “rangatiratanga” sounds a bit utopian, at least the way you describe it. A bit “Imagine there’s no countries / it isn’t hard to do”. I’m not a fan of the song, much preferring this retort by a pair of obscure American songwriters: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06a19-S77F4
                  But Lennon was only 30ish when he mused so. It sounds like you must be a lot older now than he was then – one could be forgiven for expecting you to be all the wiser for it.

              • Republic is better. That crown system is corrupt and you have forgotten recent Australian history when the gov gen turfed the govt. Wow, how did that happen. Heard of the Prince Charles spider letters? More recent scandal of Prince Charles household pay for favs..citizenship and House of Lords carrots to donors no less? Wake up, it’s a system for the 1%/gentry/ royalty/ call them what you will…generated keep the likes of you in your place and the oppressed down, supported… by the likes of you.

  13. I think Chris’s analysis of why nothing has been done with the law is right. To change the law to include a “planning a terrorism” section is as tricky as walking a tight rope. The liberal free thinkers and doer’s would buck at what Chris terms a “Police State” with all the perceived abuse of power that brings, to what constitutes a “Plan” and how a court would interpret this law. In this latest case, Intelligence may have known an attack was imminent or at least likely, by the actions and communications of this man, but unless you have a time and place and what is intended, in hard copy you don’t really have proof of a plan. I can see the difficulty of it, but I’m no lawyer. Surely any Government has access to the best legal minds that can get this done surely. So because this Government has been in power for four years I find them guilty of slow thinking and sitting on their hands. A Law change may not have stopped this terrorist attack from happening as a defensive Jacinda Ardern pointed out.. But then it might have stopped it to.

  14. Maybe the powers that be could’ve used the health and safety act to remove the terrorist from society. He was obviously a known potential hazard to police ?

  15. Well said Chris. The complicity and/or naivety of most of our media post-Urewera, beggars belief. The subsequent vilification of those police involved, who were just doing their job, under an imperfect law, is an abject disgrace.

  16. Regular TDB contributors, Minto, Griffiths, Bravery regularly bray their support for terrorism in the form of the murderous jihadist group, Hamas (remembering that our govt lists Hamas as a terrorist group).They’re even prepared to march publicly, along with certain politicians, to broadcast their approval of Hamas and Hezbollah while calling for the extinction of an entire nation. They should be on Jacinda’s list, too.

    • Wankery like this from filthy zionists is exactly why NZ anti terror legislation needs to proceed carefully. It is easy to give the State Forces more powers–and much harder to rescind them.

  17. I don’t appreciate your literary device of hanging this issue around the Gershwin poem, and it isn’t clear what exactly you are saying here either or who the far left are that have upset you, some would think you did in fact represent that part of their spectrum. Nevertheless if you are ultimately saying guns should not be in the community and any paramilitary groups banned, I would agree.

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