Thursday, 28 March 2013

Job for a buddy

Ian Fletcher. 

Ian Fletcher GCSB boss

This from 2010:

“A former high flyer in the British civil service is New Zealand's new top spy.
Ian Fletcher has returned to New Zealand from stints in England and Australia to head up the Government Communications Security Bureau (GSCB).
He replaces Sir Jerry Mateparae, who was sworn in as Governor-General last week.
Fletcher will quit his post as the Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of the Queensland State's Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation and take over running the GSCB early next year, for five years.
He began working in the British civil service in 1989, after working as a diplomat for New Zealand. He's worked at the European Commission and for the UN before becoming principal private secretary to Sir Andrew Turnbull, head of the Home Civil Service. He was also chief executive of the UK Patent Office.
Announcing the appointment Prime Minister John Key said he has '' policy and operational experience particularly in relation to international economic and trade matters.'' The GCSB gathers foreign intelligence to protect New Zealand's security, defence, economic and other”.

What the Prime Minister never said at that time was that Mr. Ian Fletcher was a very good friend of his and because of that we need to ask, why did he not share this important bit of information? It is important that these sorts of friendships are declared to ensure that democracy and democratic processes are upheld. Could it be that John Key actually and covertly helped his friend Ian into this very high paying and powerful position as New Zealand’s top spy?

Let’s just imagine that he did. Could it have been that they had a wee cup of tea together, or maybe a chat over the phone? Could the call have been something like this?

“Hi John its Ian here”…
“Ian Fleming”, the James Bond man”, asked John
“No, Ian Fletcher, I’m visiting from Australia
“Oh gid-day Ian, nice to hear from you again, what can I do for you old buddy?
“Well it’s a little bit sensitive actually John”, says Ian.
“You know I’m the PM, nothing is too sensitive for me, this is a very safe telephone line, its checked each week for bugs etc, so ask away old mate”, says John.
“Yes I’m aware that you are the PM, well you remember that position you told me about, the one with the GCSB when I was up at your place in Auckland last year, asked Ian softly.
“Yes I do, why Ian, inquired John
“Well I applied”, said Ian apprehensively and I’ve just had my final interview with the State Services Commissioner and his team, he added.
“Great, said John, and how did it go he asked.
“OK I think, oh and I never told him about our friendship or of our school boy days together when we used to play cops and robbers”, said Ian quickly.
“Probably that was best, said John feeling a bit more relaxed about where this conversation was heading. Do you know how many candidates there were seeking the position asked John?
“I heard that about a half dozen were being interviewed but I’m not sure, anyway I’m flying back to Australia in a couple of days and I’ll be in Auckland tomorrow will you be home”, asked Ian feeling a bit more relaxed now.
“Sure am, I’m at home till Sunday and then I’m to Hawaii for a weeks break, so pop in tomorrow for dinner, we’ll have lamb stew just like our Mom’s used to cook back in the good old days, if you let me know when your flight arrives I’ll have my driver pick you up in the BMW at the Airport”…
“Thanks John, said Ian, adding it’ll be just like the old days.

Now officially the suggested conversation above never took place, but if it did it has now been long forgotten or expunged from the memory cells of both John and Ian. Why, because it would have been against and in contradiction of existing recruitment processes. You are meant to declare relationships or conflicts of interests.

By upholding these safe guards we protect our country from the birth of dictatorships.

But the matter did not end there because it would appear that when the State Services Commissioner sent two names to the PM as the minister-in-charge of the GCSB for him to approve one of them to be appointed as head of the GCSB, John Key decided to not approve either one.

Later he was sent a longer list with a further list of names to select from. It is suggested that Ian Fletchers name was on that list, but he was not among the top four, the names were in preference order so we have been informed.

Yet Ian Fletcher got the job and since that appointment has worked very closely with John Key especially during and after the infamous smash and crash military styled raid on Kim Dotcoms mansion by the combined efforts of the GCSB, SIS, FBI and the NZ Police hit squad…which then hit the headlines and was later was declared illegal by the courts. John Key denied any pre-raid knowledge and Ian Fletcher supported this strange view.


When questioned in Parliament about the issue regarding the appointment of his school and family buddy Key said:

  • Their mothers were best friends,
  • Their [John and Ian] acquaintance dated back to their childhood, when their mothers were "best friends",
  • He also went to school with Fletcher's brother
  • He said, that he cannot recall if he declared the relationship, to the State Services Commissioner.

Green MP Steffan Browning later told the media “that Key, Fletcher and Fletcher's brother "Were all close mates" who "hung out together" in their schooldays.

After question time, Key told reporters he "vaguely" knew Fletcher. He would characterise him as a friend and saw him "from time to time, but not very often".

He was asked if the pair renewed their relationship when they both worked in London in the 1990s.and he replied: “"I can't recall particular occasions,". [was this a yes or a no?]

The point clearly indicated during both question time and later with the media was the fact that John Key couldn’t remember key issues. By using the words ‘I can’t recall’ doesn’t mean that he didn’t but obviously means that he avoids or side-steps telling untruths and this is a difficult line to follow over a longer periods of times as new evidence becomes available.

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