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National’s foreign policy lacks depth, commitment

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Trade

29 October 2008 Media Statement

National’s foreign policy lacks depth and commitment – Goff

“If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then superficially, Labour should be flattered by National’s policy release on foreign affairs and trade,” Trade Minister Phil Goff said today.

“But on foreign policy, there is reason not to trust the National Party. Its frequent policy flip flops show a lack of understanding and commitment in this and other areas.

“And what it continues to say when it thinks the public is not listening also gives rise to concern about the sincerity with which it holds its newly adopted views.

“John key and his party were wrong about the Iraq War but, unlike Act’s Rodney Hide in a debate this week, continue to deny that they originally supported it. They have flip-flopped on a nuclear-free New Zealand, which a couple of years ago they said would be ‘gone by lunchtime’.

“And on a key international issue, Mr Key one moment alleged in Parliament that climate change was a hoax and the next that he had always believed in it.

“The truth is that National’s leader John Key has neither the depth of understanding of foreign policy nor the principled commitment to it to resist subordinating New Zealand’s independent position if pressured to do so.

“National’s apparent conversion to Labour’s policies reflects only their recognition of the breadth of public support for Labour’s stance on foreign affairs, trade and defence polices”, Mr Goff said.


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