The Watchdog

Keeping citizens in the loop

JANE BURGERMEISTER REPORT: ‘New Zealand citizens face show-trials under “terrorism” laws, reports Kiwisfirst’

New Zealand citizens face show-trials under “terrorism” laws, reports Kiwisfirst

“After almost 4 years and over $10 million in taxpayer funds thrown at the prosecution, few Kiwis are aware of the evidence and court proceedings in the criminal prosecution of 18 New Zealand citizens initially labelled as terrorists, but whom the U.S. Embassy in Wellington was advised in 2007 by NZ Police would likely face only fines of up to $4,000.

The High Court has tried to shroud the proceedings in secrecy.



June 18, 2011 Posted by | Fighting corruption in NZ, Fighting corruption internationally, Human rights, Internationally significant information, Jane Burgermeister Report | Leave a comment

JANE BURGERMEISTER REPORT: ‘German tax payers face 65-billion-euro bill for the Greece bankster bailout, says FDP finance expert’

German tax payers face 65-billion-euro bill for the Greece bankster bailout, says FDP finance expert

German tax payers could face a bill of 65 billion euros by 2015 for the bankster bailout for Greece alone, according to Frank Schäffler, financial spokesman for the Free Democrats, the junior partner in Germany’s  coalition government.

German tax payer’s are already the biggest private creditors of Greece after the ECB bought up Greek souvereign debt, reports the FTD. But the amount they are owed is set to soar as Greece’s national debt grows.

The German government buried a policy document by economic experts in autumn 2010 urging an insolvency mechanism to be introduced to help country’s that are burdened with an unsustainable debt, as reported on this blog.

An insolvency mechanism is what is required for Greece – and yet there are still no plans for one.

Instead of following the recommendation of economic experts and putting Greece through a managed insolvency, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble are spreading hysteria, warning about a disorderly default and a worldwide financial crash to frighten lawmakers into putting limitless money into the giant debt hole of Greece as well as Ireland and Portugal.

The choice being offered to the people of the eurozone should include the option of a managed insolvency of Greece as well as Ireland and Portugal.

Merkel and Schäuble are falsely misrepresenting the choice as being between a disorderly default and a bank crash or limitless bankster bailouts.

Schäffler estimates that Greece’s existing debt of 350 billion euros is set to grow ever year by another 30 billion euros as the economy continues to contract under fiscal austerity measures prescribed by the EU, IMF and ECB. Greece’s national debt I, therefore,  set to increase to 470 billion euros by 2015.

By that time, the commercial banks would have been able to offload the last of their Greek bonds onto the ECB, leaving the tax payers having to shoulder all the losses when Greece eventually defaults or reprofiles while the private banks have taken all the profits.

Because Germany has a 28% share in the ECB, tax payers would have to contribute 130 billion euros of the 470 billion euros, Schäffler calculates.

Assuming ( optimistically) a haircut of 50% on Greek bonds in 2015, the loss for German tax payers in 2015 would amount to 65 billion euros.

Germany has an annual tax revenue of about 250 billion euros right now in a boom time for its economy – one which has benefitted corporate shareholders and not low paid workers, however.

Added to the amount Germans will be expected to pay for Greece, will come billions more for Ireland, Portugal and possibly Spain and Italy by 2015.

A debt reduction for Greece if it were carried out today would cost German tax payer’s only 15 billion euros, Schäffler says.

However, there is no sign that the German government is going to stop the gigantic sums of money flowing from tax payers to American, German and French banks as part of the bankster bailouts.

The German government has not only ignored the advice of experts to create an insolvency mechanism to keep the bankster bailout’s flowing.It has also violated the no bail out clause of the Lisbon Treaty, it has also allowed the Bundesbanbk and the ECB to violate Article 123 of the ECB rulebook prohibiting the ECB from buying debt instruments of governments.

The ECB is estimated to have 75 billion euros of Greek souvereign debt on its books. In addition, the ECB has hundreds of billions of loans to Gree, Irish, Portuguese and Spanish banks against shaky collateral under an emergency liquidity programme.

The ECB has, in fact, so many bad loans that economist Hans Werner Sinn estimates that it will be in debt to itself in just two years if it continues at this pace.

How can the eurozone central bank money-making machine destroy so much capital so fast that it will actually be in debt to itself in just two years?

As Harvard economist Kenneth Rogoff explains how Greece’s economy is being run into the ground.

“Today’s strategy, however, is far more likely to lead to blowup and disorderly restructuring. Why should the Greek people (not to mention the Irish and the Portuguese) accept years of austerity and slow growth for the sake of propping up the French and German banking systems, unless they are given huge bribes to do so? As Stanford professor Jeremy Bulow and I showed in our work on sovereign debt in the 1980’s, countries rarely can be squeezed into making net payments (payments minus new loans) to foreigners of more than a few percent for a few years. The current EU/International Monetary Fund strategy calls for a decade or two of such payments. It has to, lest the German taxpayer revolt at being asked to pay for Europe in perpetuity,” he writes.

June 18, 2011 Posted by | Fighting corruption internationally, Internationally significant information, Jane Burgermeister Report | Leave a comment

JANE BURGERMEISTER REPORT: ‘Protests in Greece go on as Papandreou reshuffles cabinet: snap elections soon?’

Protests in Greece go on as Papandreou reshuffles cabinet: snap elections soon?

Greek Prime Minister Giorgos Papandreou has reshuffled his cabinet in a bid to quell mass protests and persuade his disillusioned party to swing behind legislation for another round of fiscal austerity measures mandated by the EU, IMF and ECB.

But even if Papandreou survives a vote of confidence expected on Wednesday and gets the legislation through parliament at the end of June, it does not look as if his government will survive for very long as mass protests continue to mount against plans for more cuts and more debt for the profit of American, German and French banks.

Trade unions took to the streets of Athens today to oppose plans to sell state assets, joining the “Indignant Citizen” movement to keep the pressure up on the government to abandon the failed IMF, EU and ECB austerity policies, which are only putting Greece deeper into debt.

“Thousands of Greeks marched on parliament on Saturday in a show of unabated public anger after Prime Minister George Papandreou reshuffled his cabinet and vowed to push on with a belt-tightening campaign,” reports Reuters.

Papandreou moved Bilderberg Finance Minister George Papaconstantino to the energy ministry. The privatisation of energy companies is part of a package of €80 billion or so of pension and public sector job cuts, tax increases and asset sales.

Though Greece’s public sector and energy companies undoubtedly need to undergo some reform and become more efficient, Greek lawmakers just have to look at the privatisation of British energy and transport companies to see an example of failed privatisations, which allowed corporations carte blanche to milk captive customers and double and tripple bills while slashing investment, and reducing services to a minimum.

If this is how Greek energy companies and other state assets are to be privatised, it is sure to add fuel to the social protests.

Alan Mattich in the WSJ argues the case for Greece defaulting and devaluing its — new Drachma? — currency to reignite growth.

June 18, 2011 Posted by | Fighting corruption internationally, Internationally significant information, Jane Burgermeister Report | Leave a comment

JANE BURGERMEISTER REPORT: ‘Extreme right-wing Diva Heinz-Christian Strache stakes claim to be next Chancellor of Austria ‘

Extreme right-wing Diva Heinz-Christian Strache stakes claim to be next Chancellor of Austria

Far right wing demagogue Heinz- Christian Strache has said that he wants to be the next Chancellor of Austria at a rally for his supporters in Graz.

Portraying himself as a critic of the EU and the banks, Strache, is making a blatant attempt to hijack a growing grass roots movement opposing the authoritarian EU and the bankster bailouts.

Strache is a dental technician by training (though low achievement has never been a bar to leading far right parties in Austria as exemplified by the career of Adolf Hitler) – and so his call for Austria to form a “cultural community” with Germany in an echo of 1933 carried a hollow ring of pathos.

The bankers know they have to switch out their sock puppets politicians, who are plummetting in the polls due to the bankster bailouts, soon so that they can get four more years of looting tax payers. Strache is the front man for a new aggressive phase involving a more intense crack down on civil rights, war mongering and social unrest and designed to coincide with ever tighter fiscal austerity measures kicking in from 2012 due to the bailouts.

For Strache to claim that he stands for freedom and law and order is like a wolf claiming he is vegetarian to get into the sheep pen.

Strache stokes hatred for anyone who does not agree with his neo-Nazi coloured world view.

Far from representing a break with the current politics, Strache’s new Freedom Party line up is comprised of the ultimate insiders in the shady far right scene so often linked with criminal ventures.

Strache obviously thinks that people in Austria have a memory hole and have forgotten already that they were looted by the last predatory far right government led by Jörg Haider.

In fact, the new faces in the proposed far right cabinet make former far right Finance Minister Karl Heinz Grasser — who was found to have been lugging suitcases full of cash to invest in dodgy bank deals at the cost tax payers — look squeaky clean. Karl Heinz Grasser is married to Fiona Swarowski, scion of the super rich Swarowski clan, and along with the Flick Foundation reaped significant profits paid thanks to the  tax payers in a shady Hypo Alpe Adria deal he has never been held to account for by justice officials.

Among the collection of eccentrics and outsiders in the far right cabinet, there is Johan Gudenus, the Karl Theodor zu Guttenberg of Austria.

The scion of wealthy, far right family, Gudenus is not known to have held any job at all – perhaps because looking after his hair style and going to parties is too time consuming.

After graduating in law from Vienna university and undergoing a short stint as a trainee at a local court, Gudenus seems to have gone straight into the Freedom Party, where he has lived the life of one of the pampered political elite ever since, appearing only now and then to stoke hostility towards asylum seekers. No sensible policy intitiative has ever been heard of from Gudenus – and yet he is supposed to be the next foreign minister.

Gudenus made headlines after he was caught brawling outside a beer tent and in a disco as part of the Opera ball, and the ability to pick fights will be very useful for a warmongering minister. Others may have to shed their blood in Libya and the Middle East for Gudenus, who can put his feet up and count his increased revenue from his family investments in corporations and banks.

Gudenus along with Martin Graf and other members of the far right fencing fraternities also attended a ceremony on May 8th in the Heldenplatz in Vienna to mark Nazi Germany’s capitulation in the second world war, and Austria and Germany will be head for their third major defeat in any world war under the brazenly cynical bankster puppets like this if they ever get into power.

June 18, 2011 Posted by | Internationally significant information, Jane Burgermeister Report | Leave a comment

JANE BURGERMEISTER REPORT: ‘The Euro’s PIG-Headed Masters, by Kenneth Rogoff’

The Euro’s PIG-Headed Masters, by Kenneth Rogoff

Jane Burgermeister | June 18, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Categories: Uncategorized | URL:


Kenneth Rogoff, Project Syndicate

CAMBRIDGE – Europe is in constitutional crisis. No one seems to have the power to impose a sensible resolution of its peripheral countries’ debt crisis. Instead of restructuring the manifestly unsustainable debt burdens of Portugal, Ireland, and Greece (the PIGs), politicians and policymakers are pushing for ever-larger bailout packages with ever-less realistic austerity conditions. Unfortunately, they are not just “kicking the can down the road,” but pushing a snowball down a mountain.

True, for the moment, the problem is still economically manageable. Eurozone growth is respectable, and the PIGs account for only 6% of the eurozone’s GDP. But by stubbornly arguing that that these countries are facing a liquidity crisis, rather than a solvency problem, euro officials are putting entire system at risk. Major eurozone economies like Spain and Italy have huge debt problems of their own, especially given anemic growth and a manifest lack of competitiveness. The last thing they need is for people to be led to believe that an implicit transfer union is already in place, and that reform and economic restructuring can wait.

European Union officials argue that it would be catastrophic to restructure any member’s debts proactively. It is certainly the case that contagion will rage after any Greek restructuring. It will stop spreading only when Germany constructs a firm and credible firewall, presumably around Spanish and Italian central-government debt. This is exactly the kind of hardheaded solution that one would see in a truly integrated currency area. So, why do Europe’s leaders find this intermediate solution so unimaginable?

Read more at:

June 18, 2011 Posted by | Fighting corruption internationally, Internationally significant information, Jane Burgermeister Report | Leave a comment



What exactly occurred in the Urewera forest in 2006 – 2007 which resulted in mass police raids, arrests and seizures from Northland to Christchurch and Palmerston North to Ruatoki?

Fear of terrorism gripped New Zealand with a vengeance on 15 October 2007.

News wires lit up with images of black ninja clad members of the Police armed defender squad executing search warrants against 35 individuals at 51 locations across the entire north island of New Zealand, as well as Christchurch, “in respect to any building, box, vehicle, receptacle, premises or place”.

NZ Police Commissioner Howard Broad convened a press conference to announce what was unfolding was a coordinated police response to a home grown terrorist conspiracy.

The Commissioner made it clear that the imminent danger to society compelled him to act earlier than he had hoped or planned. Almost five years earlier to the day, New Zealand passed the Terrorist Suppression Act, the expressed purpose of which was “to make further provision in New Zealand law for the suppression of terrorism”.

This seemingly fortuitous piece of legislation was about to face its first test, in a big way.

In the hours that followed the breaking news, armed police set up roadblocks at “high risk” locations, forcing passing motorists from their cars and taking their photographs. Residents of the remote town of Ruatoki were held hostage in their homes. Police brandishing automatic weapons showed their overwhelming presence in rounding up the “terrorists”.

Mainstream media claimed their sources reported the suspects had military training camps in the Urewera hills, where they wore paramilitary uniforms and stockpiled weapons and napalm.

Similarities with Al Qaeda terror plots and talk of guerrilla training tactics were mentioned in vague terms. New Zealanders were stunned. Nineteen people would be arrested; eighteen held without bail. Countless others were subjected to raids and seizures but never charged.

The police response to claimed terrorism on our shores made news headlines around the world. In the weeks that followed, it became clear that only the police and government account was getting through to the public. The culprits were behind bars.

Defence lawyers, as they mustered to the challenge ahead, were encumbered by a legal culture that what happens in the courts of New Zealand stays in the courts. NZ lawyers are indoctrinated to believe that shining a light into court proceedings prejudices justice.

A problem for police in these mass arrests was that many of the accused were well known in New Zealand. They were a disparate group of Tuhoe sovereign activists, union organisers, avowed anarchists and fringe political elements. They were not only generally law abiding, they were – at least until now – peaceful activists. What seemed to connect them was an invitation to the Ureweras by Tuhoe at some point during the covert surveillance to discuss common political interests.

In a demonstration which was rare given the apathy-prone New Zealand psyche, Kiwis took to the streets in large numbers to protest what many came to view as oppressive government action, if not tyranny.

This public display of displeasure was considered by many in the know to be instrumental in the Solicitor General refusing a month later to pursue prosecutions under the Terrorist Suppression Act 2002.

In doing so the Solicitor General stated the evidence and the poor wording of the Act each created a legal barrier to prosecution under it. Those held for the four weeks in prison without bail while the Solicitor General had pondered his options were finally let free.

The defendants are now charged with various weapon charges; at least five are also charged with participating in an organised crime group (a novel reach for police based upon their evidence). From the onset, police were in solidarity but the defence was in disarray. Many Maori and community activists recognised that increasing public awareness was key to achieving transparency and the interests of justice.

Conversely, prominent Auckland University Law Professor Jane Kelsey strongly advocated a veil of secrecy, which included suppression of the Crown’s detailed allegations against the 18 publicly labelled as terrorists. While publicly advocating the defence position (she would later adopt the enigmatic call to “drop the charges” against the accused), Ms Kelsey’s fierce fight for secrecy – including writing numerous letters to the Solicitor General calling for prosecution of TV One, the Dominion Post and Kiwiblog for breaching the court suppression orders in their reporting of facts in the case – helped criminalise informed debate and allowed the unfettered police version to rule the day.

The blanket court suppression orders would be accompanied by orders from the Court that the defendants not associate with each other. Related search warrants and seizures occurred for months afterward, including the offices of some of the defence lawyers!  Many of those charged – and some who were not charged – had their property confiscated.

At dawn on 21 February 2008, twelve detectives and uniformed officers in seven vehicles raided the home and office of kiwisfirst’s publisher in connection with news reporting of the raids and evidence. The search warrant, signed by an unidentified “deputy registrar of the district court”, was to confiscate Vince Siemer’s library card, a tropical print shirt and anything that might connect him to the accused – or with their lawyers.

Police seized every electronic device and business record they could find, failing to provide an inventory of what they took. They later claimed they took too much to account for on the day. A subsequent application to the High Court at Auckland for disclosure of the police affidavit used to obtain the warrant was rejected by Justice Hugh Williams after police objected to producing it. It remains suppressed to this day.

Despite no charges being laid, only some of the property seized has been returned.      Early on, seemingly nothing could prevent the public being fed the blinkered State account of events. In addition to being publicly branded as terrorists, TV stations played a newsreel of accused Tame Iti shooting a NZ flag on the ground at a marae so many times that if royalties had been paid him Iti would be a rich man.

When revoking bail for the only defendant granted bail (Jamie Lockett, by District Court Judge Josephine Bouchier) Auckland High Court Justice Helen Winkelmann read out select quotes from the suppressed police affidavit in open court, including “I’m declaring war on this country”.

Winkelmann claimed such statements demonstrated how dangerous Lockett was.            The message, played out in black robe splendour for the press cameras, was the presumption of innocence ought not apply in this case. The police affidavit selectively read from by the judge remained suppressed.

Three and a half years on and still no trial in the cards for the accused, few in New Zealand realise what Winkelmann J relied upon to invoke public fear was nothing more than a impulsive rant from a man who had been the subject of intensive police surveillance and torment for 18 months, including the separation of his shoulder in police custody.

The aggrandising of the police case continued outside the courtroom, including allegations that Prime Minister Helen Clark had been physically threatened and that a plan was afoot to assassinate U.S. President George Bush. It turns out that the alleged threat to harm the Prime Minister was a phone call to Parliament from a man saying he had something to give her at Ellerslie racetrack.It was dealt to by her security staff giving the man a stern warning.

As revealed during the Solicitor General’s 2008 prosecution of Fairfax News for printing excerpts from the police evidence, the plot to assassinate President Bush included catapulting a bus onto his head.

These are a few of the tidbits of evidence that derived from the mammoth 13 month covert police surveillance codenamed “Operation 8”, which placed hidden cameras along roadsides and staring into citizens’ homes, bugs in their cars and bedrooms, tracked their bank accounts and included interceptions of their phone, electronic and personal communications.

In the Ureweras, listening devices and cameras were placed among the trees. In this remote area, many residents hunt for their sustenance. The social culture is one of nature. As such, it is common for the native bush to be a venue for meetings and recreation.       The community, centred in Ruatoki, also has a strong predilection toward Tuhoe sovereignty. This is where the seemingly revolving TV image of Tame Iti shooting the NZ flag with his rifle on a marae dovetails into the story.

The police evidence reveals alarms sounded at the police Special Investigation Group when surveillance picked up bravado texts that declared Tuhoe had to go to war to obtain sovereignty, chatter that Tame Iti had an AK 47 and eavesdrops that government agitators were travelling to the Ureweras for shooting escapades once a month or every other month.

What few people realise is the police evidence indicates eleven to thirty people would go out for the morning to the woods with four to a dozen rifles. Shooting at trees became the backdrop to a day of bonding and discussing similar interests. Such discussions might include open disdain for the police, the government or whatever. It may have included talk of hanging the Queen and obviously included Rambo style fantasies.

Before the Terrorist Suppression Act, such talk might have passed as a free and democratic right to those who had demonstrated no intention, opportunity or ability to carry out such bluster.

Under the Arms Act 1984 in New Zealand, a person can be charged for carrying or possession of firearms by association. Hence, using the example above, all eleven on an outing can be legally charged with an offence which could carry a penalty of up to a $4,000 fine and/or three years prison.

This is not to suggest that the police case is contrived and ought not to have been acted on in some fashion. Contrary to recent rumours, there is evidence that the accused did at least handle guns. The talk among a number of the accused of Al Qaeda and IRA style suicide raids, making bombs, armed struggle and employing insurgent interrogation techniques was, and still is, quite disturbing.

As are, at first sight, police surveillance images of rifle toting men wearing balaclavas and camouflage in the woods. Certainly the police believe this was not appropriate behaviour for grown men, and perhaps they are right. But anyone with experience in such extensive and protracted police surveillance immediately came away with the conclusion “is that all they have?” when reading the police evidence.

Armed raid of someone’s home, seizure of their possessions and being held without bond seems a disproportionate response to talking shit and being caught holding a rifle in the woods. The photos of the accused in camouflage and balaclavas (balaclavas are as common in Ruatoki as hoodies are in south Auckland) appear silly in comparison to the photos of how police were attired on the day of the raids.

And no one would expect the police to include any tapped conversations that might allude to such exercises being a motivational, if not misguided, tool to create cohesion and resolve among Tuhoe activists fighting for an element of sovereignty in the hills when putting forth their prosecution.

Given the broad scope and depth of intrusion in the protracted surveillance, it is perhaps telling that the police evidence culled from this covert surveillance included an account of eavesdropping at a café that was so noisy that police admitted they could not make out the conversation.

What they did hear was one of the men say “fucking police”. This two word remark, admittedly given no context, would become part of the police evidence used in support of obtaining the 51 search warrants. Similar examples were far too common in the evidence.

If the police were guilty of cherry picking comments and partial sentences from months of electronic surveillance to trump up their case, their informants were perhaps guilty of worse. No one knows for sure the extent of this or even how many informants the police used in Operation 8, but the police affidavit in support of securing the search warrants is replete with redacted references to the information relied upon from them.

One identified informant allegedly let off of charges of passport fraud was contacted for this story by kiwisfirst. The man with direct links to at least one of the accused surprisingly claimed not to know about the mere fact of the prosecutions. What appeared early on to be a runaway train had few fingerprints on the wheel. Police procedure required briefing Cabinet beforehand, but this may or may not have immediately trickled down to Crown Law.

Prime Minister Helen Clark gave reserved support to the police operation. Police Minister Annette King and Attorney General Michael Cullen were out of their depth and, presumably, were perfectly content to take the ride.

How much Solicitor General David Collins knew about the police evidence, or lack thereof, before the raids is unclear, but his office would be the focal point as the accused languished in prison.

Part of the police strategy involved painting a pattern of past offending. Past traffic violations and even public protesting had been submitted to the Auckland High Court to bolster applications for various warrants from High Court Justices Lang, Potter and Venning.

After the arrests, the slightest hint of personal misconduct underpinned the need to keep the individuals in prison. Rangi Kemara was claimed to be the “main suspect” in the hacking of the National Party website in 2004 and Lockett was described as having been “previously arrested”.

From the police evidence, it appears the 2004 hacking into the National Party website provided the genesis of Operation 8 itself. Though no one was ever charged in connection with the hacking – which entailed uploading anti-National Party images to the website – the operation seemed to take on a life of its own.

It developed that Kemara had been granted a firearms licence and had a large collection of guns, as well as a fondness for wearing camouflage clothing and engaging in war games. It appeared to snowball from there. If Tuhoe activists were running a “quasi military training camp” bent on producing terrorists in the Ureweras as police asserted, they were far from stealth or even sufficiently equipped.

At least initially, open invitations went out to pretty much any individual or group whose political views were at odds with the government’s view. What police asserted to be military regalia was in fact ordinary camouflage clothing which some of the accused routinely wore out in public.

The so called training exercises did not have enough guns to go around and police would count less than 200 shots ringing out on one “training” day. Still, according to the police portrayal, an eavesdropped conversation snippet concerning the making of bullets and bombs punctuated the magnitude of the Armageddon plans.

As with Iraq, the weapons of mass destruction were apparently never found.

It is understood that in addition to a fair number of hunting rifles, the police raids did confiscate the AK-47 (a .30 caliber semi-automatic weapon which is not illegal and whose design dates back to the 1940’s), a Glock 19 blank-firing pistol, a sawed off shotgun, at least one specialised high powered rifle, as well as a .22 caliber rifle in Wellington.

Curiously, given the huge hype and subsequent expense and secrecy surrounding this endless prosecution, there is a document on Wikileaks which purports to be a U.S. Embassy wire from Wellington in late 2007 stating NZ police advised the accused are not likely to face custodial sentences – information which begs the question of why the police are determined to paint a picture of home grown terrorism, let alone put the taxpayer through the mega-million dollar expense of prosecuting their own citizens, for the realistic expectation of collecting a $4,000 fine.

Such massive expense on the taxpayers’ backs might be remotely justified if they were hearing any truth after a month, a year, or coming up now on four years. Instead, the High Court has become a black hole of truth, justice has been denied through inordinate delay and the only ones who have seen trial are the Dominion Post editor Tim Panckhurst, who was acquitted of contempt for breach of suppression orders in 2008 and kiwisfirst publisher Vince Siemer whose trial on the same charge concluded last week and is awaiting a reserved decision.

The Operation 8 court prosecution now has all the hallmarks of a staged event.

In the vacuum of truth and the absence of any resolution, the accused have already been given their sentence. They have been branded terrorists for almost four years, their lives have been put on hold, those who had personal assets have seen these wither away toward their defence and the personal cost of fighting the endless resources of the State have taken their toll on every one of them.

This month the defendants were told their trial will not now occur until at least February 2012. Meanwhile, the fight over what is evidence, what can be used and what the mode of trial will be might as well be occurring on Mars.

The Supreme Court has reserved its decision into whether High Court Justice Winkelmann or the Court of Appeal was correct as to the legality of some of the police warrants on Tuhoe land after a hearing in May.

Another Supreme Court hearing is set to challenge the accused being denied their statutory right to trial by jury. All of this has been deemed top secret by order of the New Zealand courts. No judicial reasons were given as to why this is so.

That Maori have filed a United Nations human rights complaint over the episode might provide at least part of the answer. Secrecy is the time tested method of damage control used by the NZ government and courts. From the Mt Erebus plane crash to the Berryman Bridge collapse to the Operation 8 prosecution, little has changed in this respect.

Inconvenient truths such as Air New Zealand management’s culpability in the Erebus crash and the NZ Army’s improper use of laminated timber which caused the death of a man when the eight year old bridge collapsed are furtively kept out of the official court record. In this historical context, denial of trial by jury in the Operation 8 prosecutions is worrisome. Judging from past experience this contravention of a statutory right has to do with relying on a Crown Judge to give the appropriate winks and nods and spin to the facts.

There is also the hope that after so many years of being kept in the dark, the public will have lost interest over what created the 911 headlines in 2007.

Crown prosecutor Ross Burns is undeterred by the passage of time. In the Siemer contempt trial, Burns stated non-custodial sentences are appropriate “in the case of a few of the minnows” but that the Crown is determined to seek varying levels of prison time for those who attended more than “one or two camps”.

Two of the accused have already accepted the prosecution’s offer of non-custodial sentences. The rest seem destined to await a trial. In the meantime, Burns’ law firm Meredith Connell is milking the public treasury as the standard bearer for the crown prosecution.

An Official Information Act request by kiwisfirst, seeking to know the cost to date of the prosecution, has not been responded to as this article is posted. #

June 18, 2011 Posted by | VINCE SIEMER REPORT | Leave a comment

CLG REPORT: 17 June 2011- News Updates from Citizens for Legitimate Government

News Updates from Citizens for Legitimate Government 17 Jun 2011

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Obama Overruled 2 Top Lawyers on War Power in Libya 18 Jun 2011

President Obama rejected the views of top lawyers at the Pentagon and the Justice Department when he decided that he had the legal authority to continue American military participation in the air war in Libya without Congressional authorization, according to officials familiar with internal administration deliberations.

Jeh C. Johnson, the Pentagon general counsel, and Caroline D. Krass, the acting head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, had told the White House that they believed that the United States military’s activities in the NATO-led air war amounted to “hostilities.”

Under the War Powers Resolution, that would have required Mr. Obama to terminate or scale back the mission after May 20. But Mr. Obama decided instead to adopt the legal analysis of several other senior members of his legal team… who argued that the United States military’s activities fell short of “hostilities.”


Israeli troops cross into Lebanon 17 Jun 2011

Israeli troops have once again crossed into Lebanon in a failed kidnapping operation inside the country. Israeli troops crossed the border and entered the village of Kfar Shouba on Friday to abduct Lebanese Shepherd Ala Nabaa, a Press TV correspondent reported, adding that the Lebanese national managed to escape. Meanwhile, four Israeli warplanes violated Lebanese airspace, flying over different parts of the country for more than two hours, a statement released by the Lebanese military read on Friday.


Second Nebraska Nuclear Plant Threatened By Flooding 17 Jun 2011

A second nuclear power plant in Nebraska is being threatened by rising floodwaters, but the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, a federal watchdog lapdog agency, says the plant’s owners are taking the appropriate steps to ward off danger, according to a report in the Omaha World-Herald.

The Cooper Power Station would have to go into cold shutdown should floodwaters rise an additional six feet, a prospect local officials say is highly unlikely. The Cooper plant is located 70 miles south of Omaha. The other nuclear plant at risk of flooding, the Fort Calhoun power station, is just north of Omaha.


FAA restricts airspace over Fort Calhoun Nuclear Power Plant, under ‘Emergency Classification’ By Lori Price, 17 Jun 2011 FDC 1/6523 –


Declares Notification of Unusual Event –Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station will not move out of this emergency classification until it is confident the water will remain below the 1,004-foot level. 06 Jun 2011

As mentioned last week, the rising Missouri River waters have reached a level where OPPD is declaring a Notification of Unusual Event (NOUE) at its Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station. According to projections from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the river level at the plant site is expected to reach 1,004 feet above mean sea level later this week, and is expected to remain above that level for more than one month. OPPD notified the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and emergency management agencies in Nebraska and Iowa of the declaration.


Japan Plant Starts Treating Radioactive Water 17 Jun 2011

A system for decontaminating highly radioactive water incorporating U.S. and French technology began full operations at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex Friday, a development that will help reduce the vast amount of irradiated water that has become a major obstacle to bringing the plant to stability. The water has flooded the reactor buildings and adjacent facilities, preventing workers from conducting necessary repairs, and has periodically contaminated the ocean through spillages.


Marine reservist held in Pentagon bomb scare 17 Jun 2011

The decorated Marine reservist lurking in Arlington National Cemetery who prompted a bomb scare near the Pentagon on Friday morning has been determined not to be a public threat. Fort Myer police spotted and initially detained Yonathan Melaku, 22, of Alexandria, in the cemetery around 1:30 a.m., well past the normal closing time, the FBI said in a statement on the case. Melaku, a lance corporal in the Marine Corps reserves, was carrying a backpack that the FBI said “contained unknown materials which initially caused public safety concerns.”


Man arrested near Pentagon with bomb-making materials –Law enforcement official: Officials found what appeared to be unknown quantity of ammonium nitrate 17 Jun 2011

One person was taken into custody early Friday after being found near the Pentagon with suspicious materials in his backpack, authorities said. The man was detained after he was found after hours inside Arlington National Cemetery and was initially ‘uncooperative,’ authorities said. Officers searched his nearby car, a red 2011 Nissan, but found nothing suspicious inside, said Brenda Heck, special agent in charge of the counterterrorism unit of the FBI’s Washington field office.


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June 18, 2011 Posted by | CLG REPORT: | Leave a comment

CLG REPORT: 16 June 2011

Breaking News and Commentary from Citizens for Legitimate Government 16 Jun 2011

#breaking_news Lulzsec takes down the US CIA

16 Jun 2011 Lulzsec took down the CIA web site yesterday, ‘for the lulz’.

The group, which hacks or takes down up to three or more online presences a day, announced the hack last night on its twitter feed, saying “Tango down – – for the lulz”. The apparent denial of service attack came on the same day that the hackers opened up a phone request line for targets…

This attack seems to have been a brief one and apparently took the US spooks’ web site down for only about an hour.


CIA website hacked by Lulz Security 16 Jun 2011

The public website of the US Central Intelligence Agency has gone down after the hacker group Lulz Security said it had launched an attack.

Lulz Security has claimed responsibility for recent attacks on the Senate, Sony Corp, News Corp and the US Public Broadcasting System television network.

The CIA site initially could not be accessed from New York to San Francisco, and Bangalore to London. Later in the evening service was sporadic.


Hackers again break into Senate website 15 Jun 2011

Hackers broke into the Senate’s public website for the second time in a week but were prevented from getting any sensitive data, a security spokeswoman said on Wednesday.

The Senate’s website had also been hacked over the weekend, leading to a review of all its websites, in the latest embarrassing breach of security to hit a major U.S.-based institution. This attack was similar in that hackers broke into the public site and downloaded information, said Martina Bradford, the deputy Senate sergeant at arms.


Secret Grand Jury Investigating War Crimes and Torture at Abu Ghraib –Subpoena: ‘

The grand jury is conducting an investigation of possible violations of federal criminal laws involving War Crimes (18 USC/2441), Torture (18 USC 243OA) and related federal offenses’ 13 Jun 2011

It has been nearly a decade since Manadel al-Jamadi, an Iraqi prisoner known as “the Iceman” — for the bungled attempt to cool his body and make him look less dead — perished in CIA custody at Abu Ghraib.

TIME has learned that a prosecutor [John Durham] tasked with probing the CIA has begun calling witnesses before a secret federal grand jury in Alexandria, Va., looking into, among other things, the lurid Nov. 4, 2003, homicide.

TIME has obtained a copy of a subpoena signed by Durham that points to his grand jury’s broader mandate, which could involve charging additional CIA officers and contract employees in other cases. AP source:


CIA drone base set for Persian Gulf region –W.House already increased numbers of CIA officers in Yemen 14 Jun 2011

The United States is building a secret CIA air base in the Persian Gulf region to target [alleged] terrorists in Yemen, The Associated Press has learned.

The anti-al-Qaida effort in Yemen is being run by the Joint Special Operations Command, the top U.S. military counterterrorism outfit, and the CIA provides intelligence support. JSOC forces have been allowed by the Yemeni government to conduct limited strikes there since 2009 and have recently allowed expanded strikes by U.S. armed drones and even war planes against [alleged] al-Qaida targets.

Secret US and Afghanistan talks could see troops, spies and air power stay for decades –Russia, China and India concerned about ‘strategic partnership’ in which Americans would remain after 2014 13 Jun 2011 American and Afghan officials are locked in increasingly acrimonious secret talks about a long-term security agreement which is likely to see US troops, spies and air power based in the troubled country for decades.

Though not publicised, negotiations have been under way for more than a month to secure a strategic partnership agreement which would include an American presence beyond the end of 2014 — the agreed date for all 130,000 combat troops to leave — despite continuing public debate in Washington and among other members of the 49-nation coalition fighting in Afghanistan about the speed of the withdrawal.


Two Marines from Camp Pendleton killed in combat in Afghanistan 13 Jun 2011

Two Marines from Camp Pendleton commands have been killed in Afghanistan, the Pentagon announced Monday. Lance Cpl. Sean O’Connor, 22, of Douglas, Wyo., and Lance Cpl. Jason Hill, 20, of Poway were killed Sunday during combat operations in Helmand province.

Former Blackwater guard sentenced for killing of Afghan civilian 14 Jun 2011

A mercenary in Afghanistan for the former Blackwater security firm was sentenced Tuesday in Norfolk, Va., to more than three years in prison for shooting an Afghan civilian in Kabul in May 2009.

The contractor, Christopher Drotleff, 31, worked as a firearms instructor for Paravant LLC, a subsidiary of Blackwater’s successor firm Xe Services. He and a colleague, Justin Cannon, who is to be sentenced later this month, were convicted in March of involuntary manslaughter.


Pakistan ‘blocking supplies to US base’ 16 Jun 2011

Pakistan is blocking food and water from reaching a remote base used by the US for its secret drones programme, severely hampering counter terrorism strategy, according to a senior American official.

Both sides are now briefing against the other as hostility between the two countries grows more intense — and more open — day by day. A senior U.S. official told The New York Times that supplies had been choked off to the airbase and that they were gradually “strangling the alliance” by making things difficult for the Americans in Pakistan. [Great! Less eight-year-olds will have bombs dropped on their heads by USociopaths’ killer drones.]


Pakistan arrests ‘five CIA informants’ 15 Jun 2011

Five suspected informants have been detained by Pakistan on accusations they helped the CIA monitor Osama bin Laden’s hideaway in the weeks before he was shot dead in a US raid, Pakistani and American officials said. A Pakistani official told The Daily Telegraph the group included a military officer and the owner of a CIA safe house.

No one from the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) spy agency was available to comment on the allegations it had arrested the five informants.


Pakistan Arrests C.I.A. Informants in Bin Laden Raid 15 Jun 2011

Pakistan’s top military spy agency has arrested some of the Pakistani informants who fed information to the Central Intelligence Agency in the months leading up to the raid that led to the death of ‘Osama bin Laden,’ according to U.S. officials.

Pakistan’s detention of five C.I.A. informants, including a Pakistani Army major who officials said copied the license plates of cars visiting Bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, in the weeks before the raid, is the latest evidence of the fractured relationship between the United States and Pakistan.

U.S. helicopters fire on attackers in Iraq oil hub: military 15 Jun 2011 U.S. military helicopters fired on suspected militia fighters in southern Iraq on Wednesday, killing one, in a rare American air strike responding to a rocket attack on an airport, the U.S. military said.

The U.S. response at Basra came at a sensitive time as Baghdad and Washington debate whether American soldiers need to stay past a planned withdrawal at the end of 2011 after they finished combat missions last year. Gunmen storm Iraqi government building after car bomb attacks 14 Jun 2011 Gunmen have stormed an Iraqi provincial council building in Baquba city – northeast of Baghdad – after two bombs exploded outside, killing at least 8 people and wounding 27 more, police and health officials said.

The attack, in which hostages are believe to have been taken, in Diyala province’s capital was the latest on a government building to test Iraqi forces as they prepare for the planned withdrawal of US troops at the year end. [US mercenaries are carrying out these attacks so that Iraq is ‘forced’ to ask the US to stay.]


US Congress threatens to block Libya campaign over lack of consultation 17 Jun 2011

The American military’s continuing participation in Nato operations in Libya appeared to be in jeopardy last night as Congressional leaders, angered by what they say has been the White House’s refusal to properly consult them, threatened to block funding.

A row has been brewing for weeks over the perceived failure of the White House to give Congress a say in whether the Libyan action is justified.


‘It doesn’t pass the straight face test’:

Republican Speaker pours scorn on Obama claim of authority for Libya mission 16 Jun 2011

The Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives has slammed President Barack Obama’s claim he can carry on military action in Libya without a vote from Congress.

The administration had claimed American forces were not facing the ‘hostilities’ that would force the President to seek Congressional approval for the campaign.

‘Yet we’ve got drone attacks under way. We’re spending $10 million a day, part of an effort to drop bombs on [Colonel] Gaddafi’s compound,’ said John Boehner (R-OH), Speaker of the House of Representatives.

‘It doesn’t pass the straight face test in my view that we’re not in the midst of hostilities.’


White House defends legality of Libya mission 16 Jun 2011

Defying congressional criticism, the White House insisted Wednesday that President Barack Obama has the authority to continue U.S. military action in Libya even without authorization from Congress.

In a detailed, 32-page report to Congress, the White House also put the cost of U.S. military operations and humanitarian assistance in Libya at about $715 million, as of June 3, with the total to increase to $1.1 billion by early September.

The report marks the first time the administration has detailed publicly its legal rationale for continuing the Libya campaign without receiving congressional authorization within the 60-day window set in the War Powers Resolution.


US Congress votes against Libya funding –Amendment introduced by Brad Sherman (D-CA) invokes 1973 War Powers Resolution 14 Jun 2011

The US House of Representatives voted to prohibit the use of funds for American military operations in Libya. Lawmakers adopted the amendment to a military appropriations bill by a vote of 248 to 163.

A number of members of Congress have recently expressed their dissatisfaction at President Barack Obama’s decision to go ahead with operations in Libya in March and to continue without congressional authorization.


Palestinians say gas canisters set fire to village land 16 Jun 2011

Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters that started a fire Wednesday and burned acres of olive trees in the occupied West Bank, witnesses said. Soldiers also fired stun grenades toward fields near the village of Bil’in, near Ramallah, locals said.

Villagers tried to put off the fires, but soldiers forbade them from entering and fired more stun grenades at them. Palestinian civil defense forces sent a fire engine but Israeli forces stopped it from entering, onlookers explained. However, an Israeli fire engine was seen arriving in the same area to put out the fire.


Assange ‘being treated like a caged animal’: supporters —

WikiLeaks associates say British government spying on him during his house arrest 16 Jun 2011

After six months under virtual house arrest, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange acknowledged Thursday that his detention is hampering the work of the secret-spilling site. His supporters accused Britain of subjecting him to “excessive and dehumanizing” treatment. The Australian is living at a supporter’s rural estate as he fights extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over claims of rape and sexual molestation made by two women. Assange’s bail conditions require him to observe an overnight curfew, wear an electronic tag and report to police daily.


Assange marks six months on ‘dehumanising’ bail 16 Jun 2011

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange clocked up six months on bail Thursday, with the whistleblowing website slamming his “unfair” restrictions as he fights extradition from Britain. The 39-year-old is living at a friend’s mansion in eastern England, must wear an electronic ankle tag and observe a curfew as he appeals against his extradition to Sweden to face rape and sexual assault allegations. In a statement released to some media including The Daily Telegraph newspaper, WikiLeaks bemoaned Assange’s position.

“He has not been charged with a crime in any country. The conditions of his detention are excessive and dehumanising,” the organisation said.


WikiLeaks: statement in full 16 Jun 2011 WikiLeaks has released a statement marking six months since Julian Assange was put under house arrest, setting out his defence against sexual assault claims. Today, 16th June 2011,

Julian Assange will have spent six months under house arrest. He has not been charged with a crime in any country. The conditions of his detention are excessive and dehumanising.


House Arrest: Julian Assange By Winston Burrows (Video) 14 Jun 2011

The video depicts bail conditions of WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange, under house arrest and surveillance for the past six months.


WikiLeaks witness takes the Fifth 16 Jun 2011

A friend and leading supporter of WikiLeaks suspect Bradley Manning said Wednesday he refused to testify before a grand jury, citing his Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination. David House, one of the founding members of the Bradley Manning Support Network, told reporters after his hourlong court appearance the only information he gave the grand jury was his name and address. Army Pvt. Bradley Manning is accused of leaking classified thousands of U.S. military and State Department documents to the whistleblower WikiLeaks website.


US Postal Union Wants Letter Carriers to Fight Terrorism14 Jun 2011

As the United States Postal Service looks at ways to cut budgets and deal with declining revenue, the president of the National Association of Letter Carriers is going against the grain by suggesting the agency should be increasing the services offered, including thwarting terrorists.

President of The National Association of Letter Carriers Fredric Rolando, has several ideas to increase the responsibility of some postal workers. Among them is to outfit postal trucks with sensors so letter carriers can thwart biological terrorist attacks, according to recent reports.


‘Violent Islam’ in US prisons to be probed 15 Jun 2011

Congress is holding the second in a series of hearings about [alleged] violent Islamic radicalisation in the US, a subject so controversial that the first event drew days of protests from religious and civil rights groups and tears from a Muslim congressman who testified about his religion.

The latest House Homeland Security Committee hearing, led by New York Republican Rep. Peter King, examines Islamic radicalisation in prisons.

Radiation “hotspots” hinder Japan response to nuclear crisis 15 Jun 2011

Hisao Nakamura still can’t accept that his crisply cut field of deep green tea bushes south of Tokyo has been turned into a radioactive hazard by a crisis far beyond the horizon.

“I was more than shocked,” said Nakamura, 74, who, like other tea farmers in Kanagawa has been forced to throw away an early harvest because of radiation being released by the Fukushima Daiichi plant 300 kilometers (180 miles) away.

More than three months after the Fukushima nuclear plant was hit by a quake and tsunami that triggered the world’s worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl, Japanese officials are still struggling to understand where and how radiation released in the accident created far-flung “hotspots” of contamination.


Traces of radiation found in 2 whales off Japan 15 Jun 2011

Japanese whalers caught two animals along the northern coast that had traces of radiation, presumably from leaks at a damaged nuclear power plant, officials said Wednesday. Two of 17 minke whales caught off the Pacific coast of Hokkaido showed traces of radioactive cesium, both about one-twentieth of the legal limit, fisheries officials said. They are the first whales thought to have been affected by radiation leaked from the damaged Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant.

Fukushima City to give children radiation dosimeters 14 Jun 2011

Japan’s Fukushima city is to give radiation dosimeters to 34,000 children to measure their exposure from the tsunami-hit nuclear power plant. All children aged between four and 15 will wear the devices for three months, and data will be collected monthly. The city lies about 60km (37 miles) from the Fukushima Daiichi plant. More than three months on the facility is still leaking radioactive material.

Earless rabbit born outside Fukushima exclusion zone raises concerns 14 Jun 2011

An albino rabbit born with no ears has prompted new concerns in Japan about radiation levels from the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. The rabbit was born on May 7 in the town of Namie, which is just outside the 18-mile exclusion zone that has been imposed around the crippled plant, its owner, Yuko Sugimoto, said. The discovery has triggered new concerns in Japan about the levels of radiation released into the atmosphere since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

“I have been raising rabbits for more than 10 years and this is the first time something like this has happened,” Miss Sugimoto told a magazine.

Ft. Calhoun Nuclear Facility Flood Defenses –From the air, the nuclear plant looks like it is about to be swallowed by the Missouri River. —


Nuclear plant built to ‘withstand 500-year flood event’ 14 Jun 2011 (NE)

The Ft. Calhoun Nuclear Facility is an island right now but it is one that authorities say is going to stay dry. They say they have a number of redundant features to protect the facility from flood waters that include the aqua dam, earthen berms and sandbags.


Anthony Weiner Announces Resignation From Congress 16 Jun 2011

Democrat Anthony Weiner resigned today as U.S. representative from the 9th District of New York, saying the decision would benefit his party, constituents and wife Huma Abedin.

“I’m announcing my resignation from Congress so my colleagues can get back to work, my neighbors can choose a new representative and, most importantly, that my wife and I can continue to heal from the damage I have caused,” Weiner said at a news conference made raucous by loud yells from hecklers.


Weiner Resigns Over Twitter Sex Scandal In US 16 Jun 2011

Disgraced US politician Anthony Weiner has officially resigned from his post following an online sex scandal. The embattled Congressman of New York stood before the world and once again apologised for his “personal mistakes” and the “embarrassment I have caused” before saying he had no choice but to stand down.

“I’d hoped to be able to continue the work that the citizens of my district elected me to do – to fight for the middle class and those struggling to make it,” he said. “But unfortunately the distraction that I have created has made that impossible.”


Wisconsin Supreme Court reinstates collective bargaining law 14 Jun 2011

Acting with unusual speed, the state Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered the reinstatement of Gov. Scott Walker’s controversial plan to end most collective bargaining for tens of thousands of public workers. The court found that a committee of lawmakers was not subject to the state’s open meetings law, and so did not violate that law when it hastily approved the collective bargaining measure in March and made it possible for the Senate to take it up.

In doing so, the Supreme Court overruled a Dane County judge who had halted the legislation, ending one challenge to the law even as new challenges are likely to emerge.


Obama financial helpers obtain top positions 16 Jun 2011

Nearly 80 percent of the top donors in Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential election campaign have supposedly been given top paid jobs in the White House.

An investigation, carried out by iWatch News, has claimed that around 80 percent of those who garnered more than $500,000 for Obama during his presidential election campaign have obtained key administration posts.

The news site also found that other top donors enjoyed broad access to the White House for meetings with administration officials.


Bank of America ‘Significantly Hindered’ Review of Foreclosures, U.S. Says 14 Jun 2011

Bank of America Corp. (BAC), the largest U.S. lender, “significantly hindered” a federal review of its foreclosures on loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration, the U.S. said. The bank was slow in providing data and offered incomplete information, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development inspector general’s office, which conducted the review.

“Our review was significantly hindered by Bank of America’s reluctance to allow us to interview employees or provide data and information in a timely manner,” William Nixon, an assistant regional inspector general for the agency, said in a sworn declaration.


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June 18, 2011 Posted by | CLG REPORT: | Leave a comment