1 September 2011
Nicky Hager has released a new book on New Zealand’s involvement in Afghanistan, Iraq and “the war on terror”, claiming officials and military officers misled politicians and even ignored and broke “clear instructions issued by the Prime Minister and the Government”.
The book, called Other People’s Wars: New Zealand in Afghanistan, Iraq and the war on terror, has been released to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks.
Hager’s book on the so-called “corngate” affair, claiming a cover-up of imported genetically-modified seed, threatened to derail the 2002 election campaign.
In 2006, his book The Hollow Men, helped topple former National Party leader Don Brash.
In the introduction to his book, Hager said access to classified internal documents provided “a view of a culture where some senior officers wanted to obey the Government only when they agreed with it and otherwise quietly undermined its policies and decisions. The same politicisation is seen with some foreign affairs officials”.
He suggested the decision by some military and officials to cross the line and involve themselves in politics dated back to their unwillingness to accept New Zealand’s anti-nuclear policy of the mid 1980s.
“For these people, the September 11 attacks became an opportunity to achieve their political goals in spite of, and directly in opposition to, the policies and instructions of their civilian leaders.”
Press copies of the book will be available at a press conference at Victoria University room MZ05 (Mezzanine Floor, Rutherford House, between Parliament and Railway Station) at 12 noon today.