Today NZ Defence Minister Ron Mark announced that the Government would spend $1.5 billion on the purchase of five new Super Hercules military planes. Speaking to Stuff, the Minister lauded that the purchase of the five planes highlighted New Zealand’s commitment to its “role in collective security” to NATO and other countries in the imperialist bloc. Official Government fact sheets about the new planes show that the extent of this further commitment to US war plans, with the new planes slated to be used for both military operations in the Middle East and preparations for war in the Asia-Pacific such as the RIMPAC drills.
Further buildup of the NZ armed forces and further deployment overseas is a betrayal of the firm decision of all kiwis for a peaceful foreign policy and a commitment to a world without war and weapons of mass destruction. The purchase of these planes is not an isolated incident but part of a steady and stealthy reintegration into the US war machine.
Mirroring the United States’ creation of the ‘Space Force’ and desire, in a sick return to the 1980s, to increase the military threat against the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation, New Zealand is also developing its own space force to be fully integrated into the US militarisation of space. Rocket Lab, a space company based in New Zealand, is a US military contractor funded by Lockheed Martin and the CIA’s venture capital firm. The NZ Government is skirting with violation of the Outer Space Treaty which prevents the militarisation of space, as well as a war more damaging than anyone could have predicted at the height of the nuclear threat last century.
Collective security does not come from US/NATO warmongering, but from a policy of peace and looking after genuine socio-economic needs both in Aotearoa and across the Pacific. An extra $1.5 billion in our welfare system would allow for all beneficiaries to receive an amount they are actually able to live and thrive on. The current mass protests in the United States against racial and political brutality highlight the true nature of the US war both domestic and international, a nature of unbelievable brutality that has nothing in common with what we stand for and have consistently fought for in Aotearoa.
We must demand withdrawal from Five Eyes, suspension of New Zealand’s partnership with NATO and a foreign policy of complete neutrality, peace and friendship. New Zealand is no longer part of the British Empire and our government must stop acting as if we are part of the American Empire. Our lives and the future of all humankind and our planet are at stake.