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Flag burner Morse condemns McCully over Gaza


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Also in today’s Dominion Post was the following Letter to the Editor from one Valerie Morse. It lauds a DomPost article,  attacks the Israelis and decries Murray McCully and quotes Dante all in one brief epistle.

Letters to the Editor - Dominion Post - 5 January

Letters to the Editor - Dominion Post - 5 January

Now Adam has no problem with Ms Morse having a view contrary to his. We live in a democratic society after all.

But Adam believes that Ms Morse errs in her indictment of Murray McCully. Hamas went out of it’s way to provoke Israel. Hamas leaders knew that sooner or later they would succeed in evoking from Israel the response thay are now seeing. It suits the leaders of Hamas, and their Iranian paymasters, for Israel to respond as it has, as it cements support for them with much of the Gazan populace and the stereotypical ‘Arab in the Street’ and the rent a protester element in the West along with the Valerie Morses and John Mintos of this world; plus playing to the Arabist sentiment present in the foreign service of a number of European countries.

To Adam’s way of thinking McCully is taking a cautious view and rightly so. There is right and wrong on both sides of this conflict and it does little to assist efforts to settle the issue by leaping to condemn Israel, when Hamas is at least as culpable by setting out to provoke Israel. The previous regime tended to adopt a more strident approach to this and other foreign policy issues, taking a more pro-Arab line because of their independent foreign policy line (read anti-American stance). Note that Labour’s foreign affairs spokeswoman, one Helen Clark, has roundly condemned Israel whilst waving a wet bus ticket at Hamas. Clark’s line has to a considerable extent been parroted by many in the media. Indeed we have seen some, notably Fran O’Sullivan, prattle on about:-

the Key Government runs the risk that unless it steps up its advocacy for an immediate and urgent ceasefire for humanitarian reasons, it will be seen to have abdicated New Zealand’s moral leadership in international affairs

Adam is not sure that we do have this moral leadership. Who says we occupy this space? What does moral leadership in international affairs mean? Do other countries have this as well? Adam thinks this is largely self delusion built on the back of the ‘No nukes’ fantasy and the stoush with the US over nuclear ships. The moral leadership if it exists at all is from being anti-American and being nice to Arafat and his successors, whilst being nasty to the Fijians, but doing nothing about Mugabe. Adam suggests that McCully’s more even handed approach may in time engender more respect and influence than the former stance.

However to return to what sparked this post off, which was the letter from Valerie Morse. the name rang a bell, so Adam googled Valerie Morse. It would appear that Ms Morse is one of the Urewera 17 and is to face charges in respect of her involvement in the alleged activities of that group of activists. Scoop has a profile here. Salient ran an article on MS Morse as well.

According to Salient, in 2007,:-

Her latest bout of media attention came a few weeks ago, after she was arrested for offensive behaviour during a protest at the Wellington ANZAC Day dawn service. In an action condemned by politicians from all sides of the spectrum, Morse and other protesters from the organisation Peace Action Wellington reportedly tried to disrupt the service using plastic horns. The protest culminated in Morse allegedly burning a New Zealand flag. Morse, along with another member of Peace Action Wellington, has been remanded and will appear in court again later this month. Peace Action Wellington say the protest was to draw attention to the deployment of New Zealand troops overseas, while veterans found it repugnant.

Given the past activities of Ms Morse and her virulent anti-American attitude it is not surprising that she condemns Israel. Yet, as she professes a desire to promote freedom, Adam is surprised that she should effectively support Hamas an Islamic  group promoting a religion which sees women as lesser beings, a group which seeks to extinguish the State of Israel, stances which Adam would expect someone so dedicated to people’s freedom to find unacceptable.

Is it the case that Ms Morse is so blinded by her prejudices and beliefs that she cannot see the flaws and contradictions in her support of Hamas.

Yet perhaps not for someone who appears to consider, according to a review of her book

“AGAINST FREEDOM: The War On Terrorism In Everyday New Zealand Life”

Morse has a problem with what she calls “Western fundamentalism”: “By this term I mean the elevation of Western modernity above all other ways of knowing and being and it includes adherence to capitalism, individualism, patriarchy, scientific rationalism, ‘Christian’ morality, commodification of the environment, private property and a belief in progress”. Here’s another too big question with too many abstract nouns. Some might find it a curate’s egg, good in parts, but it’s a stretch to conclude, with Morse, that “Western fundamentalism equals or surpasses in stridency that of its stated enemy, Islamic fundamentalism”. In a critique of present-day terrorism in which the Taliban figure prominently it’s perverse.

Bizarre. By Adam’s beliefs the woman is rather sad and deluded.

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  1. adamsmith1922 permalink*
    11/01/2009 16:25

    I have always had problems with apostrophes.

    The comment is based on other reports, but I accept that there are other interpretations as well


  2. adamsmith1922 permalink*
    11/01/2009 11:21


    some might say why should the people of Gaza and Hamas be rewarded for not firing rockets into Israel.

    That implies that everytime people stop doing something wrong they should be rewarded that is perverse.

    Should Hamas agree to a permanent ceasefire and the right of the Israeli State to exist then yes a reward would be in order.

    Further, I would note that I think Israel is not in the moral right here, neither side is


  3. 11/01/2009 10:14

    I would also like to point out that Hamas and the people of Gaza received no reward for honoring the truce. Indeed, Israel’s siege of Gaza only intensified during the period of the truce.


  4. 11/01/2009 10:08

    The following is from It shows, as many other reports have, that Israel, not Hamas, broke the truce. In view of that fact, is it correct to assert, as you do, that “Hamas went out of it’s (sic) way to provoke Israel”. (And by the way, possessive pronouns don’t take an apostrophe. “Its” takes an apostrophe only when it is a contraction of “it is”.)

    CNN Rick Sanchez bursts the Israeli PR campaign in the transcripts below. The date Israel broke the ceasefire agreement was November 4th, when it killed five Palestinians fighters.
    On November 5th, another Israeli attack killed seven Palestinian fighters while on November 1st, yet again the Israeli army killed a Palestinian farmer.
    All of the Israeli killinigs were carried out in the Gaza Strip and on November 5th, Hamas’ military declared the truce to have been broken and thus no longer is held responsible. Transcripts:
    ” “The six-month ceasefire started coming apart at the beginning of November after Israeli commandos killed a team of Hamas fighters during a raid on a tunnel they suspected was being dug for kidnapping of Israeli soldiers. That raid set off more Palestinian rocketing.” That’s “U.S. News and World Report.”

    The Guardian:

    “A four-month ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza was in jeopardy today” — this was actually reported when it happened — “after Israeli troops killed six gunmen in a raid in the territory.”

    That’s important to report.


    • adamsmith1922 permalink*
      11/01/2009 16:21


      I am very sorry, but because of the links this, the longer post by Alan, got stuck in moderation, as more than 2 links sends a comment to moderation. Unfortunately the flag to alert me to this failed.

      Please accept my very sincere apologies


  5. lucy permalink
    06/01/2009 10:45

    Is this the same Ms. Morse who received a $7500 grant through the DIA’s Peace and Disarmament Education Grant Trust for her Masters Thesis on “Nuclear Insecurity: The future of NZ/USA Relations and the Promotion of Nuclear Free Policies”

    If anyone questions where we are “Leading the world” with our nuclear free policies I can answer. It is with demented souls such as Ms Morse.

    The way ‘forward’ is with less reliance on oil so it is with nuclear technology or with micro chips (via silicone valley).

    The ememy of progress that will help to solve the worlds problems such as the shortage of food, medicine and education (Education that will make those dependant now independant) are the people like Ms Morse, Hamas, Mugabe etc who want to keep people down while proffessing to lift them up for their own (personal) gratifation that they are seen as “the saviours” of man kind.


  6. 05/01/2009 20:32

    Excellent research and post Adam. I posted my own thoughts this morning in the post which follows, commenting about the “Palestinian supporters” who will protest in Wellington tomorrow

    For a “peace activist”, Ms Morse seems to have a healthy disregard for the rule of law, and for her adopted country. Is she not American?


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