CommunityFDL Main Blog

New Zealand Prime Minister Under Scrutiny For Kim Dotcom Email, Surveillance Program

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key has been having a rough past couple of days. Key is now entangled in two separate but related scandals involving collaboration with the US government and business interests to violate the rights of Kim Dotcom and others residing in New Zealand.

According to a disputed email, Prime Minster Key was in communication with Warner Brothers CEO Kevin Tsujihara and the Motion Picture Association of America concerning a plan to get Kim Dotcom, an internet entrepreneur behind the file sharing site Megaupload, to enter New Zealand so he could be arrested and extradited to the United States. Bringing down Megaupload has been a priority for Hollywood and recording industry interests due to allegations that the site helps facilitate violations of US copyright law.

Key has denied he even new who Kim Dotcom was at the time and Warner Brothers has claimed the email is fake.

At the same time that Key is denying his involvement in the Kim Dotcom plot he is also having to respond to revelations from stories from Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden in The Intercept concerning Key’s knowledge of a surveillance program aimed at all New Zealanders that violated their privacy and civil rights. Before the report Key denied such a program was going on.

The New Zealand spy agency, the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), worked in 2012 and 2013 to implement a mass metadata surveillance system even as top government officials publicly insisted no such program was being planned and would not be legally permitted.

CommunityThe Bullpen

New Zealand Prime Minister Under Scrutiny For Kim Dotcom Email, Surveillance Program

{!hitembed ID=”hitembed_1″ width=”620″ height=”398″ align=”none” !}

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key has been having a rough past couple of days. Key is now entangled in two separate but related scandals involving collaboration with the US government and business interests to violate the rights of Kim Dotcom and others residing in New Zealand.

According to a disputed email, Prime Minster Key was in communication with Warner Brothers CEO Kevin Tsujihara and the Motion Picture Association of America concerning a plan to get Kim Dotcom, an internet entrepreneur behind the file sharing site Megaupload, to enter New Zealand so he could be arrested and extradited to the United States. Bringing down Megaupload has been a priority for Hollywood and recording industry interests due to allegations that the site helps facilitate violations of US copyright law.

Key has denied he even new who Kim Dotcom was at the time and Warner Brothers has claimed the email is fake.

At the same time that Key is denying his involvement in the Kim Dotcom plot he is also having to respond to revelations from stories from Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden in The Intercept concerning Key’s knowledge of a surveillance program aimed at all New Zealanders that violated their privacy and civil rights. Before the report Key denied such a program was going on.

The New Zealand spy agency, the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), worked in 2012 and 2013 to implement a mass metadata surveillance system even as top government officials publicly insisted no such program was being planned and would not be legally permitted.

Documents provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden show that the government worked in secret to exploit a new internet surveillance law enacted in the wake of revelations of illegal domestic spying to initiate a new metadata collection program that appeared designed to collect information about the communications of New Zealanders. Those actions are in direct conflict with the assurances given to the public by Prime Minister John Key, who said the law was merely designed to fix “an ambiguous legal framework” by expressly allowing the agency to do what it had done for years, that it “isn’t and will never be wholesale spying on New Zealanders,” and the law “isn’t a revolution in the way New Zealand conducts its intelligence operations.”

Apparently Key was more interested in sharing information with the NSA than being honest with the people he supposedly represents and serves as prime minister. New Zealand is part of the now infamous Five Eyes intelligence alliance that also includes the United States, Canada, Australia, and the UK. Key likely shared the information he collected on New Zealanders with other members of the alliance just as the NSA does. The alliance essentially nullifies domestic surveillance restrictions in the five countries as one nation will spy on each other’s citizens and share the intelligence with all.

Key has now denied both accusations about domestic surveillance and involvement in  a plot against Kim Dotcom. As the evidence is presented it may be conclusively proven that Key has been lying and New Zealeanders could take their revenge for the dishonesty and abuse of power at the polls.

Previous post

New Iraq Prime Minister and John "the War Criminal" Kerry Agree: Keep Killing More Iraqi People

Next post

Once There Was a Way to Get Back Home

Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
Subscribe in a reader