Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Manaiakalani Trust

There was a short piece on Radio New Zealand National this afternoon about the Manaiakalani Trust: an organisation that Hapara (where Martin now works) work with.  They make it possible for kids in a group of very poor schools in Auckland to have access to their own computers, and then use various forms of e-learning to help the kids catch up to their educational year-level and beyond!  It seems like the systems Hapara is developing really could give kids like those Martin grew up alongside in Thailand opportunities a bit more like those that his Kiwi connections gave him :-)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Anti-life activities

On Radio New Zealand Nation yesterday morning there was a report that the SAS are intending to hunt down and kill those Afghanis responsible for the recent deaths of New Zealand soldiers.  The Prime Minister has denied these reports, but the RNZ reporter appears to have had two somewhat independent sources for his story.  Couple that with the (necessary) secrecy around the work carried out by the SAS and I'm far from confident that the report is untrue.

I've just emailed the Minister of Defence (Dr. Jonathan Coleman) about this situation.  I feel very strongly that the New Zealand forces must under no circumstances be involved in carrying out such extra-judicial killings.  Should those suspected of killing our soldiers be found, they should be tried in an appropriate court.  Killing people because we assume them to be guilty of an offence against us is never appropriate.

I feel that this is an important 'pro-life' issue - up there with abortion - so I'm posting it here in the hope of drawing some attention to this matter.  So far it's only a rumour, and it's the first I've heard of New Zealand being accused of intending to do such a thing, but the New Zealand military really musn't get involved in carrying out extrajudicial killings.  The Afghanis who carried out the killings on NZ soldiers (along with any other Afghanis who are suspected of having done so) are made in the image of God.  Their lives were given to them by God, and we should only take them from them (if at all) in fear and trembling.  Our laws were developed in this understanding, and we should not lightly set them aside.

Should you wish to email the Minister of Defence yourself, his email address is jonathan.coleman@parliament.govt.nz.