viagra uk boots buy tengo 9 semanas de embarazo puedo usar cytotec 1200 mg zithromax chlamydia benproperine 20 mg prednisone can take 1500 mg metformin once finasteride india 1mg does 1 mg of propecia work reviews of doxycycline finasteride causes acne clomid male dose glucophage y embarazo acquisto viagra generico in contrassegno assicurazione purchase diflucan online no prescription vector ampicillin resistance us generic viagra online danger of using generic viagra diflucan thrush in adults dutasteride with finasteride how many days is it safe to take prednisone best way to use a viagra comprar viagra en guadalajara julphamox 125 mg zoloft where to buy cheap cialis in uae donde puedo comprar cytotec en colima cialis diario generico onde comprar cialis viagra over counter can clomid help with weight gain in men how much does accutane cost the nhs viagra 50mg wirkung zovirax tablets in dublin how to tell fake viagra from real imovane 7 5 mg bivirkninger prednisolone where to buy viagra in hong kong only assistance in paying for cialis brand name of cipla viagra generic viagra usa sildenafil citrate rogaine and propecia purchase zoloft safe early pregnancy where to buy viagra in barbados purchase ciprofloxacin eciwlcodkedefe is generic viagra available in u.s. can you take advil on clomid dog drooling excessive in prednisone cipro numbness in arms buy cialis soft generic doxycycline 100mg thuoc gi tolerance to cialis low dose accutane 20 mg ciprohexal 250mg google uk fertility pills online clomid azithromycin generic for zithromax viagra generic 100mg reviews does generic viagra the same canada viagra online prescription generic viagra from india generic viagra from india fifa 13 pre order cheapest viagra is cialis safe in someone without ed viagra home office in toronto best dosage for daily cialis high st sildenafil cost cenforce professional sildenafil review best price propecia in uk jason stackhouse viagra advice in buying cialis in bali correct dose of cialis metformina clorhidrato 850 mg indicaciones costo de cialis en panama nozinan 5 mg bivirkninger prednisolone can i take clomid during cycle what does cialis cost per pill pde 5 hemmer viagra online 100 mg pfizer viagra no prescription i need to buy clomid online uk le prix de roaccutane au maroc private prescription cost cialis 150 mg.sildenafil.citrate.is.it.recommended.for.ed what is the use of metformin 500 mg who can prescribe cialis in canada buy cipro online review much does prescription zoloft cost propecia results by users india can you buy viagra at a store metformin hydrochloride drug bank where to get cialis in mexico lasix is used to treat google run buy cialis online come usare il nolvadex ciprofloxacine mylan 500 mg posologie cialis 10mg nebenwirkungen can you take viagra under tongue cialis online rischi best diet while metformin zits after accutane buy brand viagra no prescription canada cialis generico farmacia europea brand names for tadalafil buy propranolol er online metformin 500 mg tab zyd is female viagra real doxycycline clarithromycin together generic viagra overseas metformin is it safe for pregnancy cialis tadalafil 5mg in grimsby uk cost of 12.5mg lasix from vet ana e os 7 generico de cialis zoloft pill stuck in throat burning after vomiting prices viagra dubai cialis black online mastercard canada av reciprocating tachycardia svt in infant usage of metformin hydrochloride cheap zovirax cream uk prednisone 2 mg days is it safe to drink while on doxycycline nolvadex 20 mg generic viagra prix au canada atibax ciprofloxacina 500 mg para que sirve can cialis be dissolved in a drink monthly costs propecia walmart 25 mg viagra how can use of viagra viagra and testosterone treatment how to take ciprofloxacin 500 mg donde comprar propecia en argentina finasteride 1 mg mecanismo de accion tadalafil 10 mg from india bula do cialis 50mg viagra buying online cialis in amsterdam kaufen success in pregnancy with metformin can i take doxycycline for years cialis 5mg se puede usar con doxyciclene costa del cytotec drug is it bad to take viagra everyday a history of european socialism was written by cialis 20 mg vs doxycycline 100mg capsule image cialis in 20s can you buy sildenafil can you take acetaminophen with doxycycline comprar cytotec para abortar online en new york best way get pregnant using clomid role of propranolol in anxiety prix cialis 20 cipro 500 mg precio en mexico viagra buy singapore condo how can i buy viagra without seeing a doctor viagra online prescription required pharmacy is it safe to eat grapefruit while taking metformin which cost more viagra or cialis is it allowed to buy viagra in istanbul viagra for men south africa price prednisone weight gain 10 mg how to buy nolvadex without being ripped off good viagra online zithromax 1 gram dose buy online prix viagra pharmacie maroc proper liquid cialis dosage cialis generic 5 mg should i take nolvadex and clomid how much is for real viagra ciprofloxacino capsulas 500 mg para que sirve ritemed metformin 500 mg propecia 1mg ireland viagra oder cialis how many mg of zoloft for anxiety what is ampicillin used for in humans deprax 100 mg 60 comprimidos viagra how long before zoloft kicks in for anxiety best age to take propecia milk of magnesia inactive ingredients in metformin metformin ukparks generic viagras vs real viagra where to purchase menarini dapoxetine in sg prednisolone liquid inactive ingredients in prilosec hard sell the evolution of a viagra salesman. viagra pill splitters at walmart vitamins to take with clomid is metformin in liquid form propecia 1 mg achat best lip balm with accutane viagra generico in farmacia quando hubs can you dilute viagra in water cheapest viagra in za accutane best dose usa viagra china zoloft and 100 mg how long how much mg of viagra should i take discus the difference between cialis and generic cialis cialis reduced prices why take lasix and aldactone together generic forms metformin viagra erection review cheap viagra 100 ml for .80 cents sildenafil citrate tablets kaufen provigil viagra for the brain clomid 100mg and trigger shot cost viagra london soho house where can i get viagra in cape town pomada talsutin generico do viagra lasix in radiology cialis street price ciprofloxacin 500 mg 100 count bottle rocket metformin 500 mg dan kehamilan how to take doxycycline for lyme disease does doxycycline cause hot flushes generic viagra no prescription using mastercard prednisone use in breastfeeding doxycycline 100 price metformin 850 mg tablets diabetes medication cytotec generico intercambiable is it safe to chew viagra uk finasteride dr singh viagra 100 mg for masturbation cozumel pahrmacies price viagra can clomid cause bad breath nolvadex tabs price do parlodel and clomid work well together cytotec buy now in bronx pilule viagra prix fixe que causa la ciprofloxacina generic zoloft versus name brand ampicillin bio basic canada order viagra online australian 250 mg viagra on line free viagra with every order retina specialist in vermont health buy england finasteride can i cut ic metformin hcl er in half cheap generic tadalafil cipro dosage for uti in elderly si joint orthopedic specialist in dallas filinar generico de cialis buying viagra in camden cuanto vale cialis 20 mg prednisone mg 10 how do you get doxycycline lb agar ampicillin concentration in agar price of viagra in costa rica para se usa metformin 500 mg cheap generic black cialis propranolol 40 mg en espanol tadalafil 60 mg erfahrungen smart ganfort colirio generico de cialis is 100mg clomid better than 50mg battery operated reciprocating saw review is viagra safe for diabetes wo kann man sildenafil rezeptfrei kaufen drinking on clomid clomid uk boots shoes trade name of doxycycline in india how much is viagra in gnc sildenafil como usar cialis viagra generic. paypal walmart price viagra does viagra increase libido in women axapharm viagra kaufen china buy viagras uk vibramycin safe during pregnancy starnoc 20 mg cialis is 20 mg of cialis enough changing finasteride brands if you take a 20 mg of cialis how long does it last viagra fucking timming medicine in urdu translate can you take a viagra and cialis together ampicillin 500 mg what is it for buy generic viagra online europe best foundation with accutane cialis similar drugs why increase clomid dosage viagra capital uk cialis case marketing best over the counter viagra substitute australia will propecia counter testosterone levels cheap generic viagra from australia viagra einnahme tipps name brand cialis discount from where i can buy viagra in karachi sito affidabile cialis generico where to find over the counter viagra guisantes secos donde comprar viagra buy viagra uk yahoo fantasy when during your cycle do you take clomid cialis brand name prices man viagra pills zoloft and diovan price of viagra in korea buy for birds doxycycline no prescription buy viagra generic uk viagra retail shop list in hyderabad is viagra safe after open heart surgery how much does cialis cost after insurance prednisone price list what days are best to take clomid for twins generic brands of propecia cefdinir vs zithromax generic viagra stomach problems propecia sales uk buy viagra online with cash metformin and weight loss is anyone selling clomid in calgary xusal saft beipackzettel ciprofloxacin metformin in pcos dose safe use of cialis can i take viagra with yohimbe how should 4 500 mg er metformin be taken where to buy priligy in singapore come acquistare viagra senza ricetta in farmacia vgs pharmacy viagra prices which is stronger cialis or viagra donde puedo comprar cytotec caracas cialis price vs viagra discount viagra perscription drug nose bleeds on accutane sildenafil citrate 100mg made in india who makes zoloft generic dapoxetine available in the us strodival mr kaufen rezeptfrei viagra how often should i take 10 mg of cialis medguideindia find brand by generic cialis brandalley kuwas viagra medicamento nolvadex 20 mg pct nolvadex clomid dosage extended release metformin in pregnancy what is the age limit for buying viagra viagra availability in kuwait metformin axcount 1000 mg filmtabletten whats in redbull viagra local viagra in kolkata illegal use of viagra blood in sperm after taking viagra canadian pharmacy cialis cost cheapest kamagra and cialis uk finasteride pricing walmart zoloft vs celexa diffrence in medication tadalafil 5 mg without a prescription tesco tadalafil 10mg prices buy 40 mg cialis propranolol 60 mg cause acne cialis prescription or over the counter finasteride australia generic viagra bestellen zonder recept prednisone 5 day 20 mg tadalafil in the us mifegyne sans cytotec online amlor 10 mg prednisone whats the price for ciprofloxacin hcl pastillas cytotec como se usan las inyecciones cialis in skopje herbal cialis usa minimum effective dose of cialis where can i find generic viagra 50 mg zoloft withdrawal time prednisone tapering ogg 7 mg ibumol 200 mg of zoloft cialis does not work first time order cialis 20mg 20 tabs viagra sale high street generico do viagra ultrafarma bh scared 80 mg accutane 4 months stunt growth viagra 100 vs cialis 20 uses of ciprofloxacin hcl 500 mg cialis 20mg used for cialis pro uk four courses of accutane reviews can u take cialis and viagra what is cipro 750 mg best place to buy nolvadex in uk como se deben de usar las pastillas cytotec buy cialis 5mg online in australia propranolol 80 mg sr capsules sizes buy doxycycline tablets online cialis 5 mg boite 28 prix much tramadol safe take zoloft clomid uk boots size viagra substitute australia does doxycycline cause infertility how to have viagra in new zealand how do i know if he uses viagra generic viagra penegra tablets kuwait buying viagra 6generic propecia canada price doxycycline without insurance propranolol prescription uk rx cialis 20 mg tablet can you use differin while on accutane bay generic cialis online ratiopharm sildenafil kaufen bei will doxycycline treat sore throat viagra indian manufacturers of pentachlorophenol buy online female viagra in bangalore india metformin and triamterene wirkung viagra nach samenerguss in der is cialis a prescription drug in us priligy price nz can get accutane online how to get propecia in canada vibramycin 200 mg tabletten zum is it safe to stop taking finasteride nolvadex clomid together zoloft and imitrex propranolol 20 mg capsule viagra one tablet price in chennai safe sites order viagra can i bring propecia into australia how to buy viagra over the counter edmonton pidana 1 5 mg nebenwirkungen viagra sildenafil ukash blood pressure tablets counteracts cialis alendronate 10 mg bijsluiter nolvadex who sells cialis 2.5 mg cytotec price in mercury drugstore philippines hiring can i get priligy on the nhs is novo prednisone 50 mg safe for back pain prepress equipment for sale in uk zithromax propecia generic date 2013 100 mg clomid werkt niet cialis sell in mexico propranolol 80 mg er capsules size is it fine to take cialis 20 mg for the first time ttc clomid 100mg online buy cialis manchester is it allowed to take 40 mg cialis boots price cialis uk 10mg will generic viagra come out how much does propecia cost at walmart in canada what is normal dose of accutane prednisone 10mg dose pack poison ivy costumes farmacia online viagra argentina flag buy lasix overnight efeitos do viagra 50mg what does viagra cost at wal mart finasteride 5 mg for women hair loss studies viagra generic 20 cents from india buy accutane online for cheap viagra asda prices generic sildenafil troches sebaceous hyperplasia accutane how much does cialis cost from a pharmacy is doxycycline from india safe clomid causes depression buy generic viagra professional can amoxil treat urinary tract infection ciprofloxacin ear drops cost uk purchase research chemicals tadalafil pills why viagra do not work in the day for me figueira da india comprimidos viagra 20 mg prozac vs 50 mg zoloft errore stampante generico de cialis glucophage retail price nasal spray viagra buy brand cialis 5 mg donde comprar cialis tenerife comprimidos cialis 5 mg viagra cost of tablet en donde comprar viagra en mexico mild acne accutane results reviews varidasa generico de cialis safe cialis for sale herbal viagra birmingham over the counter not ovulating on clomid 150mg stanza in affitto zona cipro proper dosage of propecia doxycycline 50mg tabets for sale clomid effect in men zoloft drug reviews an you buy over the counter cialis indikasi propranolol 40 mg emesafene zetpillen bijwerkingen cialis how to buy zovirax cream cialis plus modo de usar como usar cytotec chile para sirve medicamento sildenafil 50 mg citrato de sildenafil viagra online boot store coupon using clomid and femara together taking doxycycline in early pregnancy europe generic cialis canadian diabetes guidelines metformin buy 20 mg accutane finasteride now available as a generic can you take doxycycline with acyclovir doxycycline for birds price mercury drug ontario physician specialized in prednisone withdrawel is clomid safe for 45 year olds diflucan in infant glimepiride metformin hydrochloride tablets sibuslim 20 mg cialis can i take spironolactone and doxycycline together what is thw work of sildenafil tablet 120 mg prednisone duration of action do they sale viagra what is metformin 500 mg for viagra cost best price viagra differenze tra viagra generico e originale prednisolone ampullen kaufen und cialis generico sicuro online viagra edmonton canada zoloft 50 mg prise poids uses of clomid medicine using clomid in the early trimester Kiwipolitico » Blog Archive » On the need for intelligence accountability and oversight reform.

On the need for intelligence accountability and oversight reform.

datePosted on 09:50, October 10th, 2012 by Pablo

One thing has become clear after the revelations of multiple New Zealand intelligence agency failures, malfeasance and incompetence over the past few years. That is what happens when there is no effective oversight on, or accountability by those agencies. As things stand the Prime Minster is the sole oversight on New Zealand’s intelligence community. The parliamentary intelligence and security committee is a toothless wonder that gets semi-regular general briefings on intelligence matters (at a rate of less than once a month), and the inspector general (IG) of intelligence–the person who is supposed to independently investigate the actions of the intelligence community–is currently a geriatric former judge who has the equivalent of a .5 full time employee and whose office and resources are provided by the agencies he is supposed to independently assess. His predecessor, another retired judge, resigned under a cloud brought about by the Ahmed Zaoui political asylum  case, where the Security Intelligence Services (SIS)  was shown to have clearly manipulated analysis of intelligence flows derived from foreign partners and the IG demonstrated bias in favor of  the SIS version  of events prior to releasing his findings.

Add to that the fact that the IG has limited powers of investigation and a parliamentary committee that cannot be told about operational matters and has no powers to subpoena or authority to force testimony under oath, and what you have is a recipe for institutional “stretch:” the tendency of institutions to exceed and play loose with the rules, laws and regulations governing their charter in the absence of effective oversight and accountability. That has become glaring apparent in recent weeks.

The problem is somewhat mitigated when the Prime Minister is a hands-on type of manager who is knowledgeable about intelligence matters, to include methods of collection and analysis. Although it raises the possibility of PM misuse of intelligence flows for political purposes, it does have the merit of forcing intelligence officials to be accountable to someone. However, if the PM is disinterested, ignorant or laissez-faire in managerial approach to intelligence matters, then the possibility of intelligence agency institutional stretch becomes quite real, as we have now seen.

Given the revelations about the GCSB and prior instances of SIS “stretch,” the time is now perfect for a reform of the intelligence oversight apparatus. Although the PM can and should remain as the minister for intelligence and security, the parliamentary committee needs to be granted effective and binding oversight authority that includes powers to investigate operational issues and force intelligence agency officials of all ranks  to respond under oath to questions about the how, when and why of specific intelligence matters. Likewise, the Inspector General’s position needs to be expanded into a three person panel that includes a mix of people with experience in handling sensitive information and knowledge of how intelligence collection and analysis works, and who answer to and are resourced by parliament rather than the PM and SIS, respectively.

Unchecked executive oversight of intelligence agencies is prone to what might be called the authoritarian tendency (by which elected executives assume quasi-dictatorial powers of managerial control), and is in fact the mark of many authoritarian regimes. This avoids the system of checks and balances that is not only a hallmark of democratic political systems, but of their institutional component as well. The issue, as the intelligence community well knows, is about triangulation: there needs to be at least three independent (if overlapped) sources of critical institutional scrutiny for information or oversight to be validated (which are manifest in policy or administrative decisions).

That system of institutional checks and balances is what provides oversight and promotes accountability within public bureaucracies as a whole. Such accountability is horizontal–between different public agencies such as the judiciary and security apparatus–as well as vertical (where public agencies answer to political authorities separated into legislative and executive components). The institutionalized oversight aggregate mitigates against public agency stretch and political manipulation.

Having one individual, whatever his or her persuasion with regard to issues of intelligence collection, analysis and political impact (something driven by the political context of the moment, including  the relationship between government and opposition and the  personal and partisan implications of any given decision regarding security and intelligence) is, in a democracy, antithetical. In mature democracies policy decisions are not individualized; they are institutionalized and subject to effective oversight.

This is simply a matter of democratic good practice. Effective, independent oversight not only keeps intelligence agencies honest and prevents institutional stretch. It reassure the voting public that the larger common interest, rather than narrow political, diplomatic or corporate concerns, are served by the intelligence and security agencies charged with defending the commonweal.

6 Responses to “On the need for intelligence accountability and oversight reform.”

  1. Chris on October 12th, 2012 at 09:07

    You make some excellent points, thank you.

    I do disagree with your support for the convention here in New Zealand that the Prime Minister should be responsible for the Intelligence and Security portfolio. I am unaware of any other first-world democracy where the head of the government is also the Minister responsible for intelligence and security. Historically it is usually only in dictatorships that the head of Government also assumes control of the security department.

    Indeed when Robert Muldoon was Prime Minister and Minister of the SIS in the early 1980’s he abused his position for political gain by releasing the names of some 30 “subversives” that the SIS had compiled for him, who were somehow linked to the Labour Party.

    In Australia, the Attorney-General is always responsible for the security departments, and in the UK I think it is the Home Secretary, and in Canada it is the Minister for Public Safety.

    Whoever is the New Zealand Prime Minister, is a constantly busy person, and that means the level of oversight and control over any portfolio they have, is always going to problematic.

    Also, because the PM is often away from Wellington it means that the SIS and GCSB then have to deal with the Deputy PM on urgent matters (like interception warrants), or even the number three in Cabinet if the Deputy PM is away too, and that gives rise to all sorts of opportunities for the intelligence agencies to abuse the absence of the permanent minister (just look how Bill English signed a Ministerial certificate when Key was in the USA and Key was never told about it on his return – it begs the question why did GCSB not disclose to the PM when they next met him that they had got English to sign a Ministerial gagging certificate?).

    This is why someone other than the PM of the day should be in charge of GCSB and the SIS – the very nature of these agencies work requires a Minister who is more available, and one who is going to have more time to devote to proper oversight of these secretive agencies. Maybe we should follow Australia’s lead, and have the Attorney-General be the responsible Minister.

    With respect to the Inspector General. The law requires that the position be filled by a retired High Court Judge, so a geriatric pensioner is always going to hold the role. I think this is dangerous as someone in their twilight years, and for whom the position is a bit of extra pin-money, is not likely to have the inclination or ability to properly monitor two Government agencies. On TV3 last night they interviewed the Inspector General on the ‘phone and he could not even recall three major cases he investigated last year. So what hope is there for the public to have confidence in the person holding the position when their memory is fading?

    I have not researched it, but I think in Australia the Inspector General is a small office and certainly the current head is a career public servant, still with a working life ahead of her. This is the sort of appointee we need here, and a less senior Minister in charge than the Prime Minister.

  2. Pablo on October 12th, 2012 at 10:01

    Excellent points Chris, and upon reflection in light of them I agree that the Minister of Security and Intelligence should be someone other than the PM. In fact, I believe that there should be a separate portfolio for the job, as it requires a person’s full attention to detail. That person would obviously have to pass polygraph tests and other security vetting and be sworn to secrecy (as happens in most other mature democracies) rather than be just some run-of-the-mill partisan hack being thrown a bone. That may complicate the selection process but that is also precisely why strict vetting and prior experience is needed (remember the case of Mr. Wilce, the former head of Defence technology)?

    I think that the IG role should be left to a panel of independent experts. That is because they are charged with investigating things, usually matters of legality and propriety on the part of the intelligence services. That means that political and bureaucratic pressures can be placed on one person, whereas having three independent minded and knowledgeable people can mitigate against undue influence on any one of them. The panel could be selected by the major political parties or coalitions and as I said, answer to and be funded by parliament. Finding an independent panel acceptable to all major political players might be hard but again, it helps insure the integrity of the IG role.

    These are major reforms to be sure, but in light on the ongoing debacles of intelligence they are absolutely necessary (yesterday Mr. Key laughingly said that he did not know who the Canadian spy was that caused the most serious breach of Echelon intelligence in its existence, about which there was a top secret meeting in Wellington a few weeks after he was arrested that involved all of the Echelon partners and news of which has been in the media for the past nine months).

    Thanks for the good food for thought.

  3. Chris on October 12th, 2012 at 10:53

    I think your suggestion of having three independently appointed experts is a good one, to counter undue influence on a single appointee. I imagine also, that the Inspector General probably deals exclusively with the CEO’s of GCSB and SIS, rather than walking the corridors talking to staff.

    I bet the current appointee has never just turned up unannounced at GCSB and said “I am now going to walk about and talk to whoever I come across, and I don’t want any management escorting me”. That should be in his job description.

    If the Inspector General is only having contact with the heads of GCSB and SIS, and not the wider staff, then those organisations effectively have complete control over what he knows and learns about the agencies over which he has oversight.

    The problem is who would be suitable to be on the expert panel? Both GCSB and SIS have been pretty much dominated (and headed) by the military since they came into existence so it might be best avoid a panel comprising ex military employees or Foreign Affairs. One thought that comes to mind is perhaps respected former politicians? (if there are any!)

    Finally, on a related matter I am surprised that the main-stream media, when it learned that GCSB had been assisting the Police on the Dotcom case, that no-one has questioned why was GCSB providing assistance at all. The GCSB were specifically set up to collect signals intelligence against foreign governments, not to assist the Police with their investigations, let alone assisting a foreign police agency like the FBI. I wonder if the NSA assisted the FBI with the case? That would be interesting to know!

    Also, the NZ Police can apply for interception warrants anyway so why did they approach GCSB? Maybe it’s because the Police have to convince a Judge before a warrant is issued. GCSB don’t have this “obstacle”. I suspect the Police sought GCSB assistance because they would not themselves have been able to convince a Judge to sign a warrant for what is simply a foreign copyright infringement case, seeking extradition of a private citizen.

  4. Pablo on October 12th, 2012 at 15:04

    The FBI most likely did have contact with the NSA, and the NSA with the GCSB. One explanation is that Dotcom was already being monitored by the NSA at the FBI’s request well before he arrived in NZ. The issues with his business is that his cloud attracted jihadists and organized crime as well as music and video downloaders. Anonymity of uploads and downloads in the cloud impeded US government countermeasures, and his lack of cooperation with US authorities in order to mitigate those concerns is what caused him to fall into the US bad graces.

    Since he lived in Hong Kong prior to gaining residence in NZ, the FBI request to the NSA to begin to electronically monitor Dotcom most likely began during that time. When Dotcom moved to NZ permanently, the responsibility for monitoring him would have shifted to the Echelon partner responsible: the GCSB. Since Dotcom was not granted residency until a month after he arrived, that gave the eavesdropping hand-off legal cover.

    That raises the question as to why the Police got involved. The FBI found a foreign police agency amenable to executing extradition and seizure warrants against a resident foreign national (Hong Kong would have been reluctant to do so for a number of reasons).

    That agency was the NZ Police. NZ Police and GCSB legal advice might have been confused about his residency status during the month after he arrived, but by late December 2010 his status was formalized. Bad legal advice and confusion is said to be the reason the GCSB was engaged by the New Zealand Police to monitor Dotcom in the weeks leading up to his arrest in January 2012.

    But if an NSA request was already in place that had Dotcom being monitored by the GCSB as part of an Echelon agreement on a case that began before Dotcom’s arrival in NZ, then the Police request was superfluous unless it wanted evidence that was not part of the Echelon agreement on monitoring Dotcom. Perhaps the cops thought that the GCSB could expand its monitoring of Dotcom without regard to his residency status because of the prior monitoring abroad and the Echelon handoff to the GCSB once Dotcome moved to NZ.

    I should note that the US government considers intellectual property theft and copyright violations to be a threat to the national security. The Obama administration argues that the damage done to the US economy by these economic crimes undermines the security of the Republic. In a post 9-11 Patriot Act environment, the expansion of the concept of “national security” has eased the way for the overlap of espionage and law enforcements agencies in pursuit of cases against non-state economic actors on national security grounds.

    Thus the GCSB is justified in saying that its monitoring of Dotcom was legal under the terms of the Echelon agreement regardless of the legality of the Police request under NZ law. Since the NZ government shares the US view that copyright and intellectual property crimes are injurious to the national interest, and hence of its security, it would seem commonsensical to agree to the NSA handoff to the GCSB with regard to Dotcom.

    Why the SIS was not given the Police request once Dotcom received residence is a matter of conjecture. The GCSB could have asked the SIS to assume the Police request using GCSB assets. Perhaps the SIS was approached and refused to get involved. Perhaps the need to secure warrants was considered prohibitive by the Police.

  5. Hugh on October 14th, 2012 at 14:21

    I think the main problem is that the people charged with oversight can be independent, or they can be familiar with the intelligence community, but they can’t be both. The only way to get familiarity with the intelligence community is to be part of it. If you appoint people from the civil service or the judicial service or some other worthy but unconnected part of the state apparatus, you’ll get people who struggle to familiarise with all the foibles and particularities of the intelligence world. If you appoint people from inside it, they will of course know how it works and where to supervise, but their impartiality will always be in question because, since the intelligence world is so small, they will be investigating people they knew and worked with for years.

    As for the idea of an independent Minister, I agree that it might be better, but I think the post would end up being combined with others, so the Minister in question might not be able to devote the time you’re envisaging. I’m also not sure about the need for polygraph tests and security vetting. What is the risk factor here, that the person in question might be compromised by foreign intelligence services or organised crime or something like that? Frankly if you think that’s a risk, it should be compulsory for all Cabinet Minister, if not all MPs.

  6. Tiger Mountain on October 14th, 2012 at 14:42

    The more watchers watching the better I say! Previous prime ministers seem to have been almost entranced by admission to the exclusive surveillance club. Another snifter Helen? jolly good then, leave that pesky Zhaoui to us!

    a small correction to Chris post 12.10, 09:07.
    Muldoon’s ‘30 list’ actually named unionists alleged to be members of the pro Soviet Socialist Unity Party NZ. Some were, some were not, but Rob’s game was to taint legitimate union affairs by association with “subversive” organisations, under the SIS Act 1969.

    Muldoon also issued another NZSIS sourced smear list during the ’81 Springbok tour which mainly outed WCL (Workers Communist League) and CPNZ (Communist Party of NZ) members that held leadership positions in anti tour coalitions–MOST (Auckland), COST (Wellington) etc.

Leave a Reply

Name: (required)
Email: (required) (will not be published)
Website:
Comment: