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Police urged to stop New Zealanders backing 'terrorist' invasion - ACT and Tenix NZ named
13 April 2003
"Terrorism is a growing threat to world peace. Terrorists need to be stopped whoever they are," Brendan Tuohy, a Wellington activist, said today. "Our new Terrorism Suppression Act makes it illegal for New Zealanders to participate in or recruit for terrorist groups, but this is still going on," said Mr Tuohy, after lodging a complaint under the Act with the police.
"The illegal invasion of Iraq is a clear-cut case of terrorism in terms of the Terrorism Suppression Act. It is the worst act of terror of modern times, killing and maiming many more innocent people than the September 11 atrocities did," he said. "New Zealand can't stop the invaders, but we can stop our own people from participating in or recruiting for their terrorist organisation, the so-called Coalition of the Willing."
Mr Tuohy's complaint singles out the ACT Party for attempting to recruit for the Coalition of the Willing, and Tenix NZ Ltd for its role in supplying frigates to the Australian Navy, a component of the invader force. "I'm not asking for these people to be prosecuted," said Mr Tuohy. "I just want the police to warn them that their actions are illegally promoting terrorism so that they will realise they should stop."
Mr Tuohy also complains that the NZ frigate Te Mana is violating the law by protecting warships of the invasion force. "We can be very proud of our Government for refusing to join or support the criminal invasion," Mr Tuohy said, "But to avoid inadvertently supporting terrorism, they need to bring Te Mana home or at least stop protecting the invaders' ships. It's ironic that our sailors who were sent to the Persian Gulf to help stop terrorism have ended up unlawfully promoting terrorism by protecting invader vessels in the war zone." The Terrorism Suppression Act applies to those serving on Te Mana because the Act binds the Crown and applies on Defence vessels operating overseas.
The legal case that the invasion of Iraq amounts to terrorism is simple. The invasion has involved many thousands of violent acts, leading to "the death of, or other serious bodily injury to, 1 or more persons" and was clearly intended to "coerce" the Iraqi government and also to "induce terror" among the Iraqi people. As well as thousands of deaths and injuries, the invasion has caused almost all the other terror outcomes specified in the Act, including "a serious risk to the health or safety of a population", "destruction of, or serious damage to, property of great value or importance, or major economic loss, or major environmental damage", and "serious interference with, or serious disruption to, an infrastructure facility, if likely to endanger human life."
The Terrorism Suppression Act exempts wartime violence, but only if that violence is legal in terms of international law. "The wartime exemption in section 5(4) of the Act does not apply to the invaders of Iraq", said Mr Tuohy. "The Iraq invasion is illegal, as is well known, because it is not in self-defence against any attack by Iraq, nor is it sanctioned by the United Nations Security Council. Also, many of the terrorist acts committed by the invaders are illegal in themselves, quite apart from their context of illegal war. For example, the invaders have used cluster bombs in civilian areas causing hundreds of civilian casualties. They have used depleted uranium munitions which are toxic and radioactive - and not just against tanks but also against buildings in cities. Invader forces have also targeted civilians including journalists, and they have openly threatened to use CS gas, in violation of the convention against chemical weapons."
"By committing these acts of terrorism, the military force invading and occupying Iraq has made itself into a terrorist organisation in terms of the Terrorism Suppression Act. New Zealanders have a legal and moral duty not to participate in this criminal invasion, whether by recruiting for the invasion force or by materially assisting it."
Contact details: Brendan Tuohy email. (The letter of complaint is below)
Text of complaint:
I wish to make a complaint about offences under the Terrorism Suppression Act.
The Act criminalises terrorist acts and organisations committing such acts and forbids anyone in New Zealand from recruiting for or otherwise assisting terrorist organisations whether the terrorist acts the organisation has committed took place in NZ or overseas.
My complaint is that the so-called 'Coalition of the Willing', i.e. the armed force presently engaged in carrying out or supporting the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq, is a terrorist organisation under the terms of section 12(1)(b) and 13(1)(b) of the Act, and that the ACT Party of NZ is recruiting for that terrorist organisation in violation of section 12(1) of the Act.
I further complain that, by escorting invader vessels into the war theatre, the NZ ship Te Mana is participating in terms of section 13(1), in a terrorist organisation by facilitating its terrorist acts i.e. the illegal invasion of Iraq.
I further complain that the Tenix NZ company in Whangarei, by supplying weapons to the Australian armed forces, a component of the Iraq invasion force, through the Anzac frigate project is also participating in a terrorist organisation in terms of section 13(1).
I request that the police warn the ACT Party of NZ and Tenix NZ that their actions are illegal. I further request that the police notify the defence authorities that the participation in the invasion by Te Mana by protecting invader ships in the war zone is illegal, so that this can be stopped.
I also request the police to inform me about any decisions or actions the police take in response to this complaint, and the basis for any such decisions or actions. In particular I request to be fully informed of any legal advice the Police obtain on whether the invasion of Iraq is or includes a terrorist act, whether the invading force is a terrorist organisation under the Act, and whether participation by NZ persons in the invaders’ coalition is or would be a violation of section 13.1.
The basis for my complaint is as follows.
The Coalition of the Willing is a terrorist organisation in terms of section 12(1)(b) and 13(1)(b) because it has committed terrorist acts as specified in section 5(1)(a).
The terrorist acts involved in the invasion of Iraq meet the criterion in section 5(1) of being for a purpose as specified in section 5(2) most obviously 5(2)(b), "to unduly compel or to force a government or an international organisation to do or abstain from doing any act", but also 5(2)(a), "to induce terror" (or as the Coalition of the Willing euphemism for terror has it, in reference to their strategy to collapse Iraqi morale through massive bombing, 'Shock and Awe') "in a civilian population." Information on 'Shock and Awe' is available at http://www.notinourname.net/Shock_and_Awe.html. The invaders’ terrorist acts also meet the criterion in section 5(2) that they have intended outcomes as specified in section 5(3). The attack on Iraq is a violation of 5(3)(a) in that it has already intentionally caused "the death of, or other serious bodily injury to, 1 or more persons (other than a person carrying out the act)", where "1 or more" is actually thousands or tens of thousands. There is no doubt the invasion has caused, and its perpetrators knew it would entail, the outcome specified in 5(3)(b): "a serious risk to the health or safety of a population". The invasion also inevitably caused all the outcomes specified in 5(3)(c): "destruction of, or serious damage to, property of great value or importance, or major economic loss, or major environmental damage, if likely to result in 1 or more outcomes specified in paragraphs (a), (b), and (d)", and also the outcomes specified in 5(3)(d): "serious interference with, or serious disruption to, an infrastructure facility, if likely to endanger human life."
The terrorist acts committed by the invaders are not exempted under section 5(4), which exempts certain acts in wartime, because the invasion is a violation of international law in that it is neither in self-defence nor authorised by the UN Security Council, as the Secretary General of the United Nations has pointed out. Even if the invaders are later able to establish complete world domination and enforce a new system of international law that legalises United States-led unilateral violence, the exemption of section 5(4) would not apply since the invasion is a violation of the international law that applies now and in Iraq, i.e. "at the time and in the place that it occurs".
The invaders have "carried out" terrorist acts in terms of section 25(d) "the carrying out of the act" in the bombings and shootings they have committed as part of their invasion, but also in terms of 25(a): "planning or other preparations to carry out the act, whether it is actually carried out or not", and 25(b): "a credible threat to carry out the act, whether it is actually carried out or not" and 25(c): "an attempt to carry out the act."
Even if it were to be somehow held that the actual invasion was authorised by the UN Security Council, which is a farcical reading of the relevant Security Council decisions although loudly espoused by the invaders themselves for obvious reasons, the Coalition of the Willing would still be guilty of carrying out a terrorist act as specified in 25(b) because of threats to attack other states in violation of the UN Charter openly made by the ringleaders, i.e. the United States regime, and would still be guilty of carrying out terrorist acts as specified in 25(a) in virtue of preparations to do so.
These terrorist threats can be found, for example, in the official policy document 'The National Security Strategy of the United States of America' which is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/nsc/nss.html. Further, the invasion ringleaders, the United States regime, have also made credible threats to use chemical weapons in the conquest of Iraq, which are illegal under international law, and this also voids any purported exemption under section 5(4).
Similarly, the United States regime’s use of depleted uranium munitions, which are radioactive and highly toxic, in the invasion is another violation of international law which would void any purported exemption under section 5(4). Attacks on journalists, and the use of cluster bombs in civilian areas by the invaders are other crimes committed by the invaders which would void any exemption under section 5(4).
I would point out that only one of the many thousands of terrorist acts of the invasion has to be recognised as a terrorist act for the invasion force to be a terrorist organisation under section 12(1)(b) and 13(1)(b). The ACT Party of New Zealand has openly and publicly stated that New Zealand and New Zealanders should be part of the Coalition of the Willing and join their attack on Iraq as for example in the statement by Ken Shirley, the ACT Party of NZ spokesperson for foreign affairs who said: "In essence we believe that New Zealand should be part of the ‘coalition of the willing’." This statement is available at http://www.act.org.nz/item.jsp?id=23820.
This ACT Party of NZ agitation is recruiting members for the Coalition of the Willing terrorist organisation in violation of section 12(1).
The actions of Te Mana in escorting invader ships in the war zone constitute participation in the invasion. Invader ships would be protected against those acting in the legitimate self-defence of Iraq who would seek to sink those ships. This constitutes "participation" as per section 13(1) in the invasion because it indisputably is intended to increase the chances that the protected ships can take part in the invaders’ military effort. The actions of the defence personnel on Te Mana are punishable in New Zealand by virtue of section 15(d)(iii), and are not exempt because the Act binds the Crown as per section 6.
Similarly, Tenix NZ, by helping supply frigates to the Australian armed forces, which form a component of the force illegally invading Iraq, is in violation of section 13(1) since supplying them with weapons amounts to participation in the invaders’ armed force.