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Regional Defence Needs Ignored - CHP

Christian Heritage Party Says Regional Defence Needs Ignored In Latest Defence Spending

The Labour Government’s announcement that it intends buying radios and armoured vehicles for the Army confirms that it has no idea what National defence is really about, says Christian Heritage Party defence spokesperson, Chris Salt. “This is Harry Potter politics in action,” says Mr Salt. The Labour Government is bewitched with peacekeeping. Ms Clark and her ministers seem to be besotted with romantic ideas about New Zealand soldiers globetrotting trying to tidy up after every conflict. “Has some magician addled their brains,” Mr Salt wonders.

Christian Heritage maintains that the Australians have every right to be upset by the government’s defence spending announcement. It ignores the reality of regional defence where maritime surveillance, vital for the protection of Australasia’s Pacific flank, would have been a far more valuable investment.

“The Labour Government has forgotten that the essential role of defence is to protect the nation,” Mr Salt said. Instead Labour is centring defence policy on peacekeeping. Peacekeeping should be an outcome of the central need to provide for the most effective defence of the nation, not drive defence spending priorities.”

Christian Heritage believes that if New Zealand should ever have to defend its shores the battle will inevitably take place on the high seas and centre on the defence of Australasia’s northern, western and eastern approaches. New Zealand also depends on vulnerable sea routes for trade. How will we protect them if we concentrate our defence dollar on a land-based peacekeeping force?

For a small country like New Zealand, a modern air surveillance and strike arm is the most resource-effective way to multiply our ability to defend this nation and contribute effectively to Australasia’s regional defence.

“Where is Harry Potter when we need him?” laments Mr Salt. “If Ms Clark and her government continue down this defence spending track, what will happen if our ability to actually defend our shores is tested? Perhaps, Ms Clark will look for a wave of Harry’s magic wand. Can he turn armoured vehicles into F16s for us? Of course, the more sensible among us will put our trust in God. But God commands that we take all lawful means to preserve our own lives and those of others.”

Ends

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