Thursday 29 March 2018

On reactions to the expulsion of Russian diplomats - in NZ and Israel

New Zealand has “isolated itself” because it has found a nice excuse not to follow the herd (and presumably, diplomatic pressure) in chucking out Russian diplomats.

It would be a fine time tpo negotiate for a free-trade agreement with the Russian Federation!

NZ can’t expel any Russian spies because we can’t find any, so what about Chinese spies?
ok, so we can’t find any Russian Spies to expel, soooooooooooooo what about any Chinese Spies?

28 March, 2018

The headline from the Guardian is hilarious…

As countries around the world deport diplomats in solidarity with UK, Jacinda Ardern says ‘there are no individuals in New Zealand who fit profile’ of a spy

ok, so we can’t find any Russian Spies to expel, soooooooooooooo what about any Chinese Spies? Like any who are actually inside a currentPolitical Party, who was even inside the Government, trying to getother spies inside NZ, what about them?

Any Chinese Spies who are embedded inside a NZ Political Party?

"New Zealand fashions itself as a good international citizen and honest broker in international affairs, so it seems odd that it would not join its closest diplomatic allies in what is largely a symbolic gesture of disapproval of Russian misbehaviour abroad"

Quite,Mr.Buchanan! – an honest broker (except under John Key!). Paul Buchanan is an American "security expert", resident in New Zealand.

Paul G. Buchanan

Jacinda Ardern’s refusal to join international action against Russia could be an attempt to stake out independent credentials, but there is little to be gained

So why has New Zealand chosen to isolate itself?

Pragmatic assessments usually inform foreign policy decisions, particularly those involving choosing sides in international disputes. That is particularly true for small states when confronted with the demands of quarreling powers to take a position in favour of one side or the other. Lilliputians such as New Zealand usually think long and hard before taking an unpopular stand – particularly amongst friends.

New Zealand’s decision not to participate in the solidarity coalition was made in the face of a direct request from the May government and in spite of the fact that the collective action is largely symbolic. Although Russian intelligence operations will be adversely affected in places like the UK, US and Germany, many of those being expelled are “normal” diplomats who can be recalled at some future date. So the downside to joining the coalition would seem relatively small even with Russian threats of retaliation, and the upside in terms of being seen to be a good diplomatic partner that supports international norms could well outweigh whatever the Russians can respond with.....

Israel opts out of US-EU anti-Russian expulsions, its intelligence finds novichik stocks in 20 countries

27 March, 2018

Israel was not among the 24 Western governments that expelled more than 100 Russian diplomats Monday over the poisoning of a former Russian spy in the UK. It is said to be the largest collective expulsion of Russian intelligence officers in history. The Israeli government was moved by three considerations:

A secret Israeli intelligence report to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and defense minister Avigdor Lieberman revealed that although the military-grade chemical agent used to poison Sergei Skripal and his daughter was originally produced in Soviet Russia, today at least 20 other governments are manufacturing and stockpiling the illicit chemical agent.

Last week, Israel tried to determine US President Donald’s position on UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s appeal to allies for active retaliation against Moscow. This was important in view of Israel’s relations with Moscow and its interaction with the Russian commanders in Syria. The answer reaching Jerusalem from the White House was vague and noncommittal.

The US president’s sudden decision to expel 60 Russian diplomats and close the Seattle consulate, after weeks of avoiding explicitly naming Moscow as the culprit of the attack, is believed by our sources to be related to the drive for a US-European understanding on how to address the future of the Iranian nuclear accord. This drive is still ongoing and Israel is still awaiting its outcome. This week, two senior European foreign ministers called on the Israeli prime minister in Jerusalem to present their case on this issue – German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and. French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian.

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