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National applauds RSA statement

National applauds RSA statement

National Party Defence spokesman John Carter says the Returned Services Association statement released today confirms what National has been saying for months.

"This document is very useful for encouraging both public and political debate on the state of our defence forces and the isolationist direction this Government is taking us in.

"National firmly believes that Labour has moved us into an isolationist, peace-keeping mode, which is not how a balanced and credible defence force should be.

"The line that struck me in the RSA's statement was ‘our forces can no longer be deployed into harm's way unless protected entirely by others. Yet we also distance ourselves from the very allies we need for that purpose’.

"It is vitally important, if New Zealand is going to defend itself, protect its trade interests and be an active partner in foreign affairs issues, that we structure our defence forces in consultation with our traditional friends and allies.

"Its ironic that the RSA knows this, National knows this, and our allies, such as the Australians, definitely know this - yet Labour refuses to accept this reality,” says Mr Carter.


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