GCSB officially part of US drone war

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Tonight prime minister John Key has formally acknowledged that the GCSB provides information that is used in the US assassination programme called the 'drone wars'.

In his post-cabinet press conference, Key said that the GCSB had not provided information in the case of Daryl Jones – the joint NZ-Australian citizen murdered in a US drone attack in November last year – but that the GCSB had provided information in Afghanistan and could have done so elsewhere. There is no reason why his denial of involvement in the death of Daryl Jones should be believed.

Key has said that he is perfectly comfortable with what the GCSB is doing, and he has reiterated that he believes everything the agency is doing is legal.

This stunning revelation follows on the visit of journalist Jeremy Scahill, author of Dirty Wars, a book and film documenting the US drone wars in Afghanistan and Yemen, this past weekend. Scahill was unequivocal about the GCSB’s knowledge and involvement in the US wars, saying he had seen dozens of documents from Edward Snowden that demonstrated NZ’s role as part of the Five Eyes alliance.

Scahill was scathing of the New Zealand government’s response to the killing of one of its own citizens, saying that no evidence had been produced of any crime. He was killed as part of a drone strike on a group of so-called ‘al-Qaeda militants’ but no evidence of this has been presented.

At the core of this issue is that the New Zealand prime minister has now admitted to having provided information to the United States in order to assist the US in murdering people. The New Zealand State has admitted to being part of a secret global war where innocent people are being murdered on a regular basis. Moreover, Scahill’s research shows that the agencies responsible for the drone war – the US Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) and the CIA – are waging war in some 80 countries. These are places where New Zealand has no declared war or interest whatsoever. How can this possibly be ‘legal’? And if it is ‘legal’ it is a demonstration that such words mean nothing but that the State can do whatever it wants in pursuing its ‘national security’.

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