Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot announced today that special forces troops and fighter jets would be deployed to fight ISIS in Iraq. The decision was made after a request for help from the US and was fully supported by the Opposition Leader Bill Shorten. If the same request was made to New Zealand would our Parliament show the same resolve ? Sadly I suspect not.
Too many New Zealanders think that our geographic isolation and relatively small size means we can hide from unpleasant and inconvenient international realities. Someone else will sort it out. However if we are to take our place with any respect in the community of civilised nations we should be willing to play our part in fighting barbaric evil movements such as ISIS.
I have made my donation to Tear Fund’s crisis appeal to provide aid for the thousands of civilians who have had to flee this “murderous death cult” as Abbot described them. However humanitarian aid alone will not be enough. Great evil needs to be engaged and defeated. In the spirit of ANZAC we should be joining our courageous Aussie mates.
Well said Ewen. I think after the election we’ll see renewed and extensive dialogue with Tony Abbott. A documentary series in 2003 (I think) was titled “The Pacific Century”. NZ and Australia will have a huge role to play on the world stage.
Kiora Ewen, There is such an inconsistancy with our resolve about foreign diplomacy and indeed policy, in the minds of many kiwi’s, particularly under 30’s, and it remains unresolved through our lack of presence at the U.N. and lack of education in such matters. It would be so naive to think we are not however present with “unpleasant and inconveniant international realities”, but yes unfortunately it does exist here in Godzone. Yes, how indeed do we as a small pacific Nation situate our selves with our international/global allies. Well we have a track record of service and support throughout the world, with the 20th century wars, through to Afghanistan. I guess the question might be that what is our role considering the ANZUS pact that we have maintained and other Western alliances.
Even having a place of alliance against such extremist militant sectarian organisations of which the world never seems to be rid of, how much and in what form that takes is needing to be addressed here in a more informed and consensual manner. And that I am afraid is an idealogical quagmire.
Of course the bigger question is the absence of a plan of action on New Zealand”s part.Our foreign policy is in need of a overhaul in allowing nz’ders to even understand the intregal nature of equipping,training and sending our forces to fight alongside or assist in a ground presence if that is required. This has been so evident with the role of the PM as head of NZ security and intelligence operatives.The horror’s of such groups as the ISIS , remind me also of a time when that source of militant secterian terrorist activity, was in the form of the IRA. The ever present ‘evil’ of our age and ages past is the need for others to subvert, control and through violence and tryanny, become a power unto themselves, without regard for the sanctity of the freedoms of others to live in peace, under the protection of the will of the people forming a Government of their choosing, that considers the freedom to prosper and govern their own affairs, to settle matters within the limitation of fair and just laws, to at least be able to defend themselves and others from those who would have disregard for the sanctity of life. The worst part I guess is when we see the inner sanctem of our own democratic constitutions, nuturing and feeding individuals who then join these groups through a besieged idealogical warfare which demonstrates and manifests itself sadly through generations in some cases, the very premises they believe will give rise to those beliefs. The most truly terrifying aspect is the indignation and ignorance of the freedoms fought for that bought peace and civility, unfetted by absolute control and power in our own country that have given us freedoms that many in this war torn world can only dream of.