A continuing campaign again the annual New Zealand Defence Industry Association Weapons Expo, where arms dealers and the NZ military come together to further the business of war. In 2016, this also coincides with the Navy’s 75th anniversary ‘celebrations’ and the invitation of warships from around the world to our waters. Peace Action Wellington oppose the Weapons Expo & the warship visit.
This campaign is focused on the opposing the annual weapons conference held in Wellington every year. The conference is organised by the New Zealand Defence Industry Association and is attended by over 200 delegates from some of the world’s larges weapons manufacturers.
As the country gets ready to commemorate the loss of thousands of New Zealand lives 100 years ago at Gallipoli, the government is preparing to commit us to another brutal intervention in Iraq – a war that the American government expects ‘could last years.’
When asked why New Zealand might join an ANZAC badged unit, the prime minister replied ‘one argument could possibly be the 100 year commemorations of Gallipoli.’
US Marines out of Wellington Hospital
In December 2013 & December 2014, United States Marine Corp soldiers in full dress uniform came to Wellington Hospital, accompanied by media from the Dominion Post, to deliver Christmas presents that they had collected from the community as part of a charity called ‘Toys for Tots’. The newspaper published favourable stories about the visit the following days (2013) (2014).
Members of Peace Action Wellington are working to ensure that the US Marine Corp cannot use Wellington Hospital as a propaganda organ. In April 2015, we made a presentation to the Capital & Coast District Health Board asking for a decision from the Board prohibiting foreign military in the hospital unless they were seeking medical assistance or visiting friends. The board responded that they have no problem with the current visits by US Marines. We will continue our work raising awareness about the visits of trained murderers to the children’s ward of our hospital.