Of course I am a bit sensitive to the implication that my colleagues have fallen down on the job.
Yeah that was what rubbed me the wrong way I think, I don’t imagine that them having fallen down on the job would be a widely held assumption, given the scope and frequency of these attacks. Anyway no offence intended Stephen and my apologies for any that was caused.
but clearly you are and could pass it on.
I’m still awaiting a reply to my first email, I’m not certain she’s that proficient yet. I hope that in some way clarifies the level of user I’m concerned for. Thanks for your understanding and taking the time to reply.
That Dominique Prieur and Commander Alain Mafart were only captured with the assistance of a Neighbourhood Watch group is damning evidence that the SIS were well out of their depth when it comes to that which they’re mandated to actually handle.
I see it as evidence that the main way to deal with terrorism is to not treat it as exceptional in the first place, but as criminal activity which is caught out by good police work. At the government spook level there's no way I'd expect our SIS to go toe-to-toe with the French intelligence services.
As for going toe-to-toe with crazy fundamentalist terrorists, the fact that the USA with all it's disgustingly large power has singularly failed to prevent endless terrorism within their supposed domain of control, leads me to think it's a stupid, stupid game to even play. We should be having nothing whatsoever to do with it.
Anyway no offence intended Stephen and my apologies for any that was caused.
GROUP HUG! Seriously, I was stewing a bit doing the vacuuming just now and I appreciate this.
We should be having nothing whatsoever to do with it.
Yeah. On the 3rd of April 2002, a bomb described as a “simple fuse device" detonated in Tianfu Square in Chengdu, Sichuan, one individual was seriously injured, and many others were hurt in the blast. On February 26th 2003 two bombs exploded in the dining halls at Peking and Qinghua Universities in Beijing injuring six people. In 2007 authorities "foiled a planned terrorist attack" on a flight from Urumqi Xinjiang, at least two passengers on flight CZ6901 were taken into custody for questioning, inflammable material had been found in the plane’s toilet. On the 4th of August 2008 suspected ETIM militants reportedly drove a truck into a group of approximately 70 jogging policemen. According to official Chinese media accounts, they then got out of the truck wielding machetes, and lobbed grenades at the officers, killing 16 people. On the 10th of August 2008 seven men armed with homemade explosives drove taxis into government buildings, in Kuqa, Xinjiang, injuring at least two police officers and a security guard. On the 12th of August 2008 three security officers were allegedly killed in a stabbing incident in Yamanya, near Kashgar in Xinjiang. On the 19th of August 2010 six ethnic Uyghur men were allegedly involved in loading a vehicle with explosives and driving into a group of security officers at a highway intersection near Aksu, Xinjiang. On the 18th of July 2011 18 people died when 18 young Uyghur men stormed a police station in the city of Hotan. The men were alleged to have stabbed a security guard and two female hostages, and killed another security guard with a bomb. 30-31st of July 2011 18 people died in a series of alleged terrorist attacks in the city of Kashgar, the violence began when two Uyghur men hijacked a truck, ran it into a crowded street, and started stabbing people, killing six. On the 29th June 2012 Chinese official media reported that six men attempted to hijack Tianjin Airlines flight GS7554 from Hotan to Urumqi, Xinjiang. On the 24th of April 2013 an ‘ethnic clash’ took place between Muslim Uighur and Han Chinese community, nearly 21 people were killed in the incident including 15 police officers. On the 26 of June 2013 At least 35 people were killed in clashes between ethnic Uyghurs and police when a group of 17 knife-wielding Uyghur men attacked a police station and government building. On the 28th of October 2013 a car crashed at Tiananmen Square killing five and injuring dozens in a premeditated terrorist attack. On the 1st of March 2014 an unidentified group of knife-wielding men and women attacked people at the Kunming Railway Station.leaving more than 29 civilians and 4 perpetrators dead with more than 140 others injured.
Regardless of the veracity and specifics of any of these reports individually, cumulatively they reveal a climate of terrorism diametrically opposed to that which is enjoyed in New Zealand, yet in this same period the New Zealand Government would pass:
1. Terrorism Suppression Act 2002
2. Crimes Amendment Act 2003 (see Counter-Terrorism bill 2002)
3. New Zealand Security Intelligence Service Amendment Act 2003
4. Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003
5. Maritime Security Act 2004
6. Telecommunications (Interception Capability) Act 2004
7. Terrorism Suppression Amendment Act 2007
8. Civil Aviation Amendment Act 2007
9. New Zealand Security Intelligence Service Amendment Act 2011
10. Telecommunications (Interception Capability and Security) Act 2013
11. Government Communications Security Bureau and Related Legislation Amendment Bill 2013
12. Proposed Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill 2014
Raising the stakes to the point where the number security/anti terror bills or acts introduced in New Zealand is almost neck and neck with the number of actual terrorist attacks in China during the same period. And I guess the gullible could claim that New Zealand’s lack of terrorism is due to all the bills, as opposed to say, the lack of terrorists.
@NSA, 13 terrorist attacks in twelve years in China is 1 per billion people per annum. At that rate NZ would expect one every 250 years.
Anyway, urgent legislation happens to counter urgent events. The recent urgent event being Kim Dotcom's big show before the election where a reporter showed up on an aeroplane to criticise the local security clown show.
So they're getting the right to grab all of such people's data on the way in or out of the country. Because that should stop the pricks turning up in the first place. Plus being given the right to do all the stuff they're doing anyway, as per normal. Finally, y'know, t'rism, for the name. Scratching out some judicial oversight about some unused bullshit makes a nice red herring.
@NSA, 13 terrorist attacks in twelve years in China is 1 per billion people per annum. At that rate NZ would expect one every 250 years.
Yes, that’s basically what I’m getting at Tussock, highlighting the difference between a country with an ongoing terrorist threat as opposed to one where the Government just prattles on about terrorism for the purpose of foisting more security legislation on the population.
I should probably add that the list of terrorist actions above is by no means conclusive, just a brief rundown of the terrorism in China wikipedia page, additionally in April this year a knife attack and bombing occurred in the Chinese city of Ürümqi, Xinjiang. The incident, a terrorist attack, left three people dead and seventy-nine others injured. A month later on the 22 May 2014, two sport utility vehicles (SUVs) carrying five assailants were driven into a busy street market in Ürümqi, the capital of China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. Up to a dozen explosives were thrown at shoppers from the windows of the SUVs.
To better contextualise the above data, it’s probably also worth noting that of the 14 attacks above and the 2 listed in this post, 12 occurred in the far western XinJiang Province (population 21m) and the Kunming incident was also allegedly perpetrated by XinJiang agitators. Until the Kunming attack this year the vast majority of Chinese in the rest of country would arguably have as much fear of being directly impacted by terrorism as your average kiwi, maybe even less so given some of the hysterical comments I read on stuff.co.nz, the fundamental difference of course being that in China there are organisations who are genuinely motivated to carry out these attacks. Any of the nonces we come across trotting out these staid lines about the legislation being required to counter the threats NZ faces is either a liar or afflicted with the same kind of mental incapacity as the god fearers.
As a litmus test; in environments with genuine terrorist threats, rather than playing up the threats, officials generally tend to play them down in order to reassure the public, that being y’know, as part of their brief to preserve stability, their job. When you have the kind of leader who willingly makes a habit of getting in a car, travelling across the town or country then sitting through make up for the express purpose of playing up these threats in exclusives to all the major broadcasters, feeds to the media outlets and via his Twitter account, as we see:: here. here. here, here. here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here etc then we can absolutely bet our bottom dollar that the biggest risk New Zealand faces is the loss or our PM’s credibility were he to miss a beat in his concerted effort drumming up the spurious. Because that's not really what actually happens, except when there's an agenda.
If that fails to convince even the most skeptical as to how farcical this official’s official beat up is, the official might then rope in some more officials to beat it a little harder; say the nation’s Defence Minister, or The Minister in charge of the SIS & GCSB, heck the PM might even get so desperate that he actually drags the Director of the alledgedly Secret Intelligence Service Rebecca ‘We’ve snooped on 88 of yers and we’re not telling who’ Kitterige out to start doing media interviews in order to reiterate the threats and answer questions about Bond movies. Nothing here reeks of anything but the most frenzied desperation of the type one only observes in those greenest of newbs who’ve never spent any reasonable length of time whatsoever in a country with an actual quantifiable and tangible terrorist threat, It’s pure Hollywood.
If the SIS feel that their current sizable powers are inadequate for countering threats in a country the size of New Zealand then the members who feel so are obviously not up to the job. If there were a terrorist attack today, just as there was in 1987 it would be a tall order to point fingers at the lack of legislation. Likewise with members of the Government who would support this bill, there’s no confidence in the SIS’s ability to work under the current SIS, if these were minor misgivings there would be no need to rush the legislation.
Without the numbers to defeat the bill, given it’s being rushed, and with the intelligence committee review commencing before July next year in mind, the opposition are in a difficult position, on the one hand, as many of us are, they are humouring the process, but there’s a nagging sense that if our MPs were to be completely honest about what is going on here, and without numbers to defeat the bill, that their time might be better spent laughing Finlayson, Kitteridge, Key, Brownlee and the rest of their merry band out of the room, completely forgoing the vote for this Christmas pantomime and popping down to the Beauty Bliss Pop-Up Shop for a spot of beautification.
In contrast to the Government’s fantasies Tussock your explanation sounds eminently more than reasonable and Andrew Geddis has a no less plausible take on the need for the 48 hours warrantless surveillance here.
Trouble up at mill, Guv...
One wonders if it is not time for the Governor General to either refuse to 'rubber stamp' National's rushed increased SIS powers legislation
dismiss the Prime Minister as an untrustworthy prevaricator who is misleading the country and thereby the Queen.
(proroguing a gallery of rogues, perhaps?)
He at least needs to question the PMs intentions.
...and question whether the PM and Government are keeping him fully informed as required under the Letters Patent - especially as Key seems to be unable to keep his facts straight, and arguably acting without a mandate against the wishes (and possibly against the best interests) of 'we, the people'.
Could be an interesting meeting of the Executive Council this morning...
dismiss the Prime Minister as an untrustworthy prevaricator who is misleading the country
Hear hear. What keeps me glued to my set is NZMSM’s propensity to regurgitate all this whimsy and jargon with very little in the way of thorough examination of what they’re typing or saying. The new word catchphrase:
"Government agencies have a watch list of between 30 and 40 people of concern in the foreign fighter context. These are people in, or from New Zealand who are in various ways participating in extremist behaviour,” Key said.
“Watch list”. It feels like it’s something I should know the meaning of but I don’t, what is a watch list? This report says "DHB on the mend but still on watch list" Here ” Canterburty Provincial chambers are on world watch list". This new Kitteridge/Key style watch list doesn’t sound much like those other types of watch lists, in fact it sounds, to coin your term Ian, ominous, more like something you’d associate with the STASI, certainly not the type of watch list I’d like to be on. All things considered who’d want to be on a watch list? Who wants to live in a country where you might be on the watch list? Being honest with ourselves, when the KK bring up their watch list as they’re wont to do what kind of reference point are they going for? Why mention the Watch list? What role does die watch list play in der narrative?
When did we become a watch listed nation? When did we join the watch list association? Who okayed our watch list nation application and why? Are there membership benefits? What does a watch list entail exactly? Are the names on the list the names of people The State plans to watch or are they people The State is currently watching? Is it a full time thing? Are they watching their telecommunications? their homes? 24/5 or 7? If you’re on the watchlist does that mean you have SIS surveillance equipment in your homes? Wouldn’t it save a heck of a lot of money to just tap these people on the shoulder, inform them that they’re on the watchlist, ask them about their intentions, and then provide any assistance they might need to get off the watch list? Why would you not lift a finger and just keep them on the watch list? Is it a type of zoo fetish? Will there be less funding if the watch list shrinks? How does one excuse oneself from a watch list? What process does it entail? How is introducing the watch list into public discourse meant to decrease the threats posed by those on the watch list? Kitteridge said they’re “disturbed individuals”. “Disturbed individuals” who it was considered a good idea to inform via the media that their most likely on the watch list. If new listees are radicalised by the watch list does that require the launch of a new watch list? Key is fairly clear that these 30 or 40 people are on a watch list “in a foreign fighter context”. How many watch lists are there? Are the members of the Foreign Fighter watch list watched more than those on the vandal activist watch list? If, taking a step back, if those radicalised by this revelation of watch lists, wreak havoc, will the State accept some accountability and look into reviewing the use of watch lists? How does one join the watch list? Are those on the watch list safer than the rest? Is it like a deluxe smoke alarm? Where are our guidance systems?
He’s making a list,
And checking it twice;
Gonna find out Who’s naughty and nice.
Santa Claus is coming to town
has been replaced by a new festive bedtime reading:
"Kitteridge reads aloud from one manual, which tells followers: “Every Muslim should get out of his house, find a crusader and kill him. It is important that the killing becomes attributed to patrons of the Islamic State who have obeyed its leadership. Secrecy should be followed when planning and executing any attack."
Someone living 8550km closer to ISISHQ than you.
What if the SIS was re-purposed to fish for tax evaders and money launderers? It's a safe bet we'll hear a loud a chorus of "KGB!" from those cheering on the law changes going through.
For the record: Stuff, per se, was not hacked.
Thanks for that Stephen, though I’m unsure of your professional affiliations here, so I raise an eyebrow at the strictness of interpretation of the term ‘hacked’ that you’re employing.
I'm not sure why Stephen's affiliations are in the least bit relevant. If the breach was of a service that supplies content that is linked to from the stuff.co.nz site, Stephen is both pedantically and actually correct in his statement. He's not picking at the word "hacked", he's picking at it being stuff.co.nz that was compromised. Hence his use of the phrase "per se".
I've got no affiliation with (and little love for) Fairfax and the members of its media stable, but I wouldn't question anyone who said what Stephen did. Allowing inaccuracies to lie just because the details are a little bit complex does nobody any favours.
Stephen is both pedantically and actually correct in his statement.
He is, as I mentioned a similar explanation had been given in that Guardian article.
The Independent says that the hack came through the Gigya CDN it uses, writing that “hackers redirected some users to their site or to display their messages, by exploiting the DNS entry – which translates URLs such as independent.co.uk into directions to the site – at GoDaddy, the site’s domain registrar”.
So the issue was in the public domain and in all fairness, I don’t expect anyone to follow all the links I posted, Stephen addressed the question around his affiliations on Saturday. he’s totally in the clear. My issue with Fairfax and straw man affiliates could most simply be whittled down to one of basic courtesy and clarity of information. A PR issue rather than IT. Hours after the attack Stuff.co.nz published this and today they published this. You and I can read these articles and make sense of them. Many computer users can parse all that jargon. However millions of internet users are not able to. If stuff.co.nz required membership and a login or was a specialist publication I’d have no issue, but stuff.co.nz fulfills the basic and necessary function of a digital newspaper and it is one of New Zealand’s leading news sites so you can guarantee that the level of technobabble employed in their explanation won’t compute with any number of readers. At this basic level, anyone who attempted to engage in the act of reading that newspaper at the time the hack occurred received the message:
“You’ve been hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA)”
‘Hack’ is a word that’s been in the media and culture for decades, and so anyone receiving that message, clicking ok, linking to an image of the SEA logo might very well feel their heart racing. More advanced users will obviously appreciate the detailed explanation, they’re not my concern, the issue is that one might reasonably expect the site, having caused the reader to receive that message, might fully consider its readership and make a clear statement to the effect that:
"To anyone who attempted to access stuff.co.nz a 3am NZT 28th November 2014 and received this message “You’ve been hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA)”. Please rest assured that you were not been hacked and that this was an issue with our own system."
Say for example you’re on an airplane, things get a bit shaky and the captain comes on the PA and announces ” “Fasten your seatbelts, we’re going to be experiencing a state of fluid flow in which the instantaneous velocities exhibit irregular and apparently random fluctuations.”. A lot of people are going to WTF at that, sounds kind of serious. The plane shakes a bit, but soon after the captain chimes in “The state of fluid flow in which the instantaneous velocities exhibit irregular and apparently random fluctuations has now passed and you are free to move around the cabin.” There’s no way I’m loosening that seat belt for the rest of the flight, with an explanation like that I’m white knuckling it all the way to Timaru.
Massive relief to get off that plane, and then we’re walking across the tarmac, the woman sitting beside me, breathing deep sighs of relief, muttering something about the ‘random fluctuations’ is stopped by someone, someone affiliated with the airline, who corrects her, “The fluctuations weren’t random per se, extreme weather phenomena acts like a solid object to winds blowing over or around it. Like a monolith, a storm can create waves in winds flowing over it. flow becomes more roiled and sinuous At lower levels, thunderstorms can create eddies: patches of zigzagging…” The passenger begins to turn green, the affiliate nonplussed continues “…fluctuations vary with the difference in windspeed in adjacent currents, size of aircraft, wing loading, airspeed, and aircraft altitude. When an aircraft travels rapidly from one current to another, it undergoes abrupt changes in acceleration…”
The passenger vomits on the affiliate’s shoes.
Now we’ll never really know if the passenger’s vomit was issued due to the speech or the turbulence, but we can assume that the affiliate’s spiel did little to assuage any concerns a layman may have had. Certainly I’d think twice about flying that airline again.
Which is all by the by, but just in the interests of clarity for you Matthew; while a lack of due consideration for the full spectrum of patrons’ concerns may impact the fortunes of a company, a lack of due consideration for the full spectrum of patrons’ concerns by someone affiliated with the company is going to do little to enhance that company's position . But most importantly, so I don't forget; none, not one of us, are affiliated with stuff.co.nz.
My apologies I fudged the link explaining Kitteridge’s choice of reading material above (amongst the pages of typos). It’s possibly worth noting that she was not reading from ‘a manual’ per se but from the 4th issue of ISIS’s Dabiq magazine. I’m uncertain whether the SIS are paid subscribers or whether it was downloaded with a decision made to print the whole thing up for PR purposes, but what is known is that the excerpt she quoted was the same one making round on the usual media about two weeks earlier. A Google search of the line
"Every Muslim should get out of his house, find a crusader and kill him"
brings up 11,100 hits, and that has got to make you wonder how many of the magazine’s subscribers are media outlets and intelligence agencies, and whether there is much money in this area of publishing.
Strangely where Kitteridge says:
"It’s not difficult to find this material. There are people who read these sorts of things.
Clearly, and she’s absolutely right! A simple Google search provided a pdf version as its second result, (and it’s one slick publication, not that I’m going to print it out or anything) hosted by US based Clarion Project:
Founded in 2006, Clarion Project (formerly Clarion Fund Inc) is an independently funded, non-profit organization dedicated to exposing the dangers of Islamic extremism while providing a platform for the voices of moderation and promoting grassroots activism.
Clarion Project, Inc.
1717 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington DC 20006
Just down the road from:
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW,
Washington, DC 20006
So there’s your access right there. The design and layout of the magazine is uniform and bold, though the tone of the content would be of concern to anyone crusading:
““O Americans, and O Europeans, the Islamic State did not initiate a war against you, as your governments and media try to make you believe […] you can kill a disbelieving American or European – especially the spiteful and filthy French – or an Australian, or a Canadian, or any other disbeliever from the disbelievers waging war,
Spin it how you like, those French are spiteful, and filthy, single them out. Obviously It’s written entirely in American English, is flawlessly proofread, immaculately punctuated and there are detailed and at times racist footnotes. The subject matter is largely vile propaganda and an increasingly horrendously array of graphic images, possibly more graphic than you’re likely to see in most MSM, most of the time. Having a bit of a gander it seems that America and its allies are their enemy, I’m skimming but I’ve not found mention of the generalised ‘west’, the focus seems to be mainly on ‘the allies’, 'the crusaders', 'the disbelievers' who join the crusade against ISIS. in fact there are some quotes implying an intent to only fight those who want to fight “against the Muslim”, they seem pretty pissed about the airstrikes and Bush’s Crusasde truth be told. Also there are a lot of quotes from American’s: Bush, Obama, Kissinger, Michael Scheuer, Chuck Hagel…
Now I guess the question I’ve got to ask is: does reading and downloading this get me on the watch list, and if it does, and the SIS gets a warrant and installs cameras in my house, what are my rights? Am I entitled to SIS assistance if my house is burgled? Can they disclose the relevant footage? If they’ve previously already compromised my household security by breaking in to install the equipment will this affect my insurance payouts, shouldn’t being watched mean I’m eligible to pay cheaper premiums?
Given I’m not a Muslim and therefore not the magazine’s target demographic does that eliminate me from watch list eligibility? If I’m scared Muslim after reading the publication, having followed the Director of the SIS’s breadcrumbs to find the publication, does that make me eligible for the watch list? Can I claim a tax rebate on my subscription to the publication if my access is for semi-professional purposes? Though this magazine contains lots of history, propaganda and religious education it contains no ‘how-to’, aren’t stuff.co.nz’s claims that Kitteridge read from a manual highly misleading? Was Kitteridge following the SIS manual when giving the impression that her quotation was from a manual rather than a magazine?
When pressed further on whether there is evidence of such acts being planned in New Zealand, she says: “There are people who we know are interested in these kinds of acts."
Objectively speaking. Does me reading this magazine constitute me being interested in these kind of acts? Or is there still leeway for me to make the case that my focus is such that I’m more interested in our State's kind of act?
We all know how God is all part of the plot.
And heaven help those who rent their place out to someone on the watch list, that's a heck of an imposition to make on the good honest kiwi's investment and who'd want to live with or rent a place from someone who might be on the watch list? However these tenants, landlords, homeowners are getting on the watch list, be it reading magazines, watching videos, having conversations, what is 100% clear from what I've read that it's pretty much only Muslims who can effectively join ISIS, meaning the whole raison d'etre of this Foreign Fighters Bill hinges on their being at least one Muslim left in New Zealand by week's end. ISIS is all that the spooks have talked about and ISIS are by definition Muslims.
Now there were 46,194 Muslims in New Zealand as of March last year, if you take the "30 or 40" on the Foreign Fighter watch list and add that to the other "30 to 40" individuals on the "further investigation" list, taking the highest possible total, as would seem reasonable in a world where numbers matter, we have a situation where about 1 in 500 Muslims in, around, or from New Zealand are currently on one these NZSIS lists. As a New Zealand Muslim you've got as much chance of being on an SIS Investigation/Watch list as you have of developing Parkinsons, and that's without even factoring out the percentage of children or aged or disabled in our Muslim population That's some invasive shit.
GROUP HUG! Seriously, I was stewing a bit doing the vacuuming just now and I appreciate this.
Fucking vacuuming. I hate it too.
Yes, it really sucks.
In a carpeted existence it’s easy to forget the world of hard floors. What I’d give for a vacuum cleaner and a supple surface to work it over. What’s the bet this guy’s on the watch list, he sounds a bit too Islamic not to be. The authorities, on the ball as ever, throwing around the T word without missing a beat:
When you have our own citizens setting up a terrorist-style cult within New Zealand, then the agencies on behalf of New Zealanders will do anything they can to stamp them out.
936 Facebook friends, some of whom are probably on the watch list too. When you know you’re being watched it ceases to be mere existence, everything you do becomes something of an event.