Why are Israeli attacks on UNRWA so much more important for the Prime Minister than genocide committed against the Palestinian people?


Unfortunately there was no discussion of foreign policy during the election last year. Aside from the odd obligatory question in a TV debate it barely got a mention.

Our international relations tend to be glossed over because most policy is shared by Labour and National at least.  

It wasn’t always this way. Back in the 1970s there was a palpable feeling of pride across the country as the Norman Kirk Labour government sent a New Zealand frigate to protest against French nuclear testing in the Pacific. A similar community pride surrounded developing our anti-nuclear policy in the 1980s and relief as well when New Zealand did not buckle to US pressure and stayed out of the infamous invasion of Iraq in 2003 while the rest of the western world fell for the huge propaganda blitz about non-existent “weapons of mass destruction”.

It has been an awful surprise to see New Zealand give up that independence so easily in the last two years.  

We rightly joined the condemnation of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine because while there were clear reasons for Russia’s action there was no justification. But then Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her successor Chris Hipkins just gave up even the pretence of independence. Both attended belligerent NATO meetings and it’s been a fast downhill ride since. Our new National-led government is continuing the same political momentum. 

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Nevertheless it still came as a shock two weeks back when PM Luxon – flanked by Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins – announced we were sending military personnel to join the US-led bombing of Yemen.

There was no United Nations mandate for war and it was supported only by the tiniest minority of western countries. 

The Houthi group in Yemen have attacked Israeli-linked shipping in the Red Sea to pressure Israel to end its slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza. Yemeni groups have done this because the western world has turned its back on the people of Gaza and refuses to condemn Israel’s indiscriminate killing of Palestinians. 

Shouldn’t we be speaking strongly for an immediate permanent ceasefire in Gaza like most of the world rather than joining in bombing one of the world’s poorest countries? A ceasefire in Gaza would end the attacks on Red Sea shipping and dramatically reduce tensions across the Middle East.

That’s what an independent New Zealand would have done. 

Instead of pride, most of us feel shame as the world now looks on us as a small, obsequious appendage to the US empire – an empire which has blocked three UN Security Council resolutions calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.

The killing of civilians and the taking of civilian hostages is a war crime under the fourth Geneva convention and must always be condemned, no matter who the perpetrator. We were right to condemn the killing of Israeli civilians but our government’s refusal to condemn the killing of over 26,000 Palestinians, including over 12,000 children, or even call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza leaves an indelible stain on our reputation.

Our lack of independence was on display again two weeks ago when the International Court of Justice found a plausible case exists that Israel is committing genocide in Gaza. Instead of backing up the court ruling with demands Israel end the killing of Palestinians New Zealand has been all but silent with the Prime Minister blundering his way through question time in parliament without a clue about our international responsibilities.  

While all but ignoring the genocide ruling by the ICJ Christopher Luxon was quick to halt New Zealand funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency over Israeli allegations 12 of UNRWA’s 30,000 employees were alleged terrorists. A classic diversion by Israel to avoid the dreadful truth of their killing of Palestinians in Gaza. New Zealand happily joined the diversion.

Why are Israeli attacks on UNRWA so much more important for the Prime Minister than genocide committed against the Palestinian people?

 The simple truth is we are swimming against the great tide of humanity which stands with Palestinians.

Our government has pushed us into the dark shadow of US/Israeli policies of oppression and domination. We need to be back out in the sun.



  1. Perhaps, we need to understand, that our government like other like-minded government’s, no longer work for humanity. They now, primarily serve – power. This tragedy has starkly exposed this new reality.

    What do we – humanity – think of this and perhaps look to do about this, thereafter?

  2. You should be ashamed of yourself John. The great Nation of Israel is so sophisticated that the special rabbis of the Israeli Defence Forces are even issuing special guidelines on how they, while illegally occupying the homes of the people in the Gaza concentration camp (as opposed to the original homes of those same people in 1948 Palestine, which they previously stole) to use as bases to shoot civilians from, can make sure the pots and pans and food they steal from the civilians they are targeting for genocide is kosher.

    Did British colonial troops have guidance like this when crushing Maori resistance in the New Zealand Wars, clarifying whether they could use a stolen pot without first dipping it in a ritual bath, or whether simply pouring over boiling water would suffice? Of course not. This is why Israel is the Greatest Nation On Earth.
    Translation from a jewish Hebrew speaker who doesn’t support the genocide of all gentiles here:

  3. Here’s one reason why. As long as New Zealanders convince themselves that Russia was at fault for the current war in Ukraine, those who are involved in both that war and the Gaza war have us by the short and curlies. The Ukraine War started with the 2014 coup followed by the new ultra-nationalist government waging war on its ethnic Russians. Russia tried its best to find a peaceful resolution through the Minsk Accords but neither Ukraine or any of its guarantors of the Accords including Germany and Paris had any intention of complying with it. Instead, Nato expanded and armed the Ukraine Military and Ukraine continued to shell the civilians of the Donbas. If Russia had not tried to find a peaceful solution it would have to accept half the blame for the conflict. But to expect Russia to simply stand by as Ukraine acted as a proxy to break up Nato is incredibly unrealistic. So now we have New Zealanders believing the same people who have killed and wounded over !00,000 Palestinians are the good guys in the other conflict. While the Russians, who have tried to limit civilian casualties in Ukraine and are in no way supporting the genocide in Israel are the bad guys. This is illogical. You can’t have it both ways. You have to either go with Russia and Palestine, or go with israel and Ukraine. Incidentally, Israel was arming the neo-nazi Azov Battalion in Ukraine.

    • Very true. And indeed, Zelensky has repeatedly supported ‘israeli’ sport-killing attacks on Palestinian civilians.

      • Bad news I’m afraid, Mo. The IDF has now shattered 20 out of the 24 Hamas terrorist battalions. The remaining 4 are headed for oblivion in Rafah. Victory is sweet.

        • lol, keep on coping, zionist pig.

          The human resistance remains intact, in Palestine, and worldwide.

          Tick, tock.

  4. Just how debased and evil are the actions of the Israeli army, that their murder of a 5 year old girl named Hind along with her should be known around the world, and in our Parliament,,, because her horrific death,,, and Israels murder of the two brave red crescent/red cross rescuers who tried to save her ,,, are what ‘supporting Israel’ leaves you standing with.

    Cruel Barbaric Murder….. Genocide ,,,, She, her family, and those who sought to save her were Genocided…. https://youtu.be/JHCWRqJvbhg?t=1174

    Ethnically cleansing Israel has been Netenyahus life mission and now it’s being ruthlessly done….

    The evil murder of this little girl along with her entire family shows how it’s being done ,,, the two options Israel are ‘offering’ Palestinians ,,, is Leave or Die ,,, be ethnically cleansed or be exterminated.

    Deliberate starvation by Israel was well under way when New Zealand showed it’s hand ,,, and our membership in the ‘Coalition of the Killing’ ,,, when Luxon jumped to help Israel accelerate the starvation and suffering by cutting New Zealand humanitarian aid based on the pretext of unsubstantiated Israeli accusations … along with our 5 Eyes partners..

    This is Dirty Dirty politics on a international scale conducted at the lowest most depraved levels , our Nact-first Govte know that game of deceit and are playing on behalf of Israel ,,,

    Luxon, Winston, Collins and Seymor have been telling a multitude of lies , not even acknowledging Israels war crimes let alone making criticism of them ,,,, weasel words of concern for the victims are just to disguise their/our actions – “Luxon would not condemn Israel, ,,, but he “does express concern https://www.1news.co.nz/2024/02/12/winston-peters-meets-with-israeli-ambassador-to-discuss-conflict/ ,,,

    Our dirty media are doing their job too ,,, reporting bullshit diversion stories about about Green MP’s ,,, while NOT providing information on how the Zionists after having corralled 1.3 million Civilians into the last “safe zone”,,,are turning that into a free-fire Death zone with the aim of liquefying/ending the Ghetto https://youtu.be/JHCWRqJvbhg?list=TLPQMTIwMjIwMjTpKMAc8A41dA&t=805 ….

    It’s taken a lot of help every step of the way to get Israel into this position ,,, and a lot of fake concern while providing all the weapons, bombs, military staff , the laundering of Israel propaganda and all the other support that our ‘Coalition of the Killing’ has provided ….

    NAct-first has us standing with evil ,,,, https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/world/2024/02/five-year-old-palestinian-girl-found-dead-after-being-trapped-in-car-under-israeli-fire.html

    • “The blood of the children, women, and elderly – I do not say that it shouts out to you, but rather we need this blood so that it will ignite within us the spirit of revolution, so that it will arouse within us persistence, so that it will arouse within us defiance and [a forward] advance.” (Hamas Political Bureau Chairman Ismail Haniyeh, quoted on al-Jazeera, Oct 26, 2023.)
      How debased and evil is it to ignore Hamas’ lethal manipulation of its civilian population to seek martyrdom while condemning Israel’s self-defence. You think these jihadists, safe in their Turkish and Qatari mansions care one iota for Hind Rajab or her would-be rescuers?
      PS. If the entire family were ‘murdered’ why has Newshub embedded a video interview with the child’s mother in its news article. Rather unethical and cause for a complaint to the media council I would have thought.

    • This surely is just one among thousands of tragic stories in Gaza. The brutality that has always existed here has escalated beyond anything we could imagine with the Israel scorched earth policy. So many double standards. How can the Western world watch and let it go on.
      How could NZ align itself to what it has. So right JM. This slide began with Labour as you point out and it has become out of control with this coalition.

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