Spooks stay mum

There is stiff competition among government departments as to who can produce the most vacuous documents. But no-one can beat the SIS and the Government Communications Security Bureau, both of whom tabled their

annual reports


I was expecting more, because the SIS report has a section headed “Informed Public”, which explains that the SIS Director, Dr Warren Tucker, spoke to a number of Rotary Clubs.

What he told them is a bit of a mystery, because all we find in the SIS annual report is that the agency ‘undertook successful counter terrorism operations’ and that it used 24 interception warrants ‘which materially contributed to the detection of activities prejudicial to security’. If you want to know more, use your imagination.

Still, the SIS is doing better than the GCSB, which spends 11 pages basically saying nothing, other than to let us know that ‘a number of Foreign Interception Warrants’ were in ‘in force’ during the year.

Call me a cynic, but I don’t think these interception warrants were tracking Israeli government communications to see if they were still trying to obtain fraudulent New Zealand passports, as they were proved to have done a few years back. If the SIS and GCSB were really into ‘counter-terrorism’ Israel would be a target, particularly after its terrorist

assassination of a Palestinian official

in Dubai earlier this month.