Wellington looks to Washington over Gaza Line

Watching Hillary Clinton on the box talking about Gaza I had an eerie feeling. Hadn’t I heard the same words from Murray McCully. They seemed to have the same script writer, who I suspected might be in Washington rather than Wellington.

I checked and yes, Hillary had said ‘the situation in Gaza is unsustainable’, precisely the words Mr McCully had put in a press release. So did Hillary and Murray call for the lifting of Israel’s economic blockade of Gaza like the UN, the EU and almost everyone else? No chance. First, Hamas must meet

‘Israel’s legitimate security needs’

(Hillary) or be

‘guaranteeing the security of Israel’


‘In the meantime,’

I asked Murray in Parliament

, is it ‘OK to starve a whole population, to deny them the necessities of life, and virtually close down their entire economy?’

Murray didn’t really answer the question, but under public pressure both he and Hillary have conceded the need for some improvement, for ‘adequate access [to Gaza] for humanitarian goods,

including reconstruction and building supplies

‘ (Hillary) or an increase in ‘the flow of

humanitarian and other necessary supplies

‘ (Murray).

So did they welcome the aid flotilla, and condemn the murderous assault on it? Well, no. They both said it was best to wait for an ‘investigation’ before passing judgement. Hillary thought an Israeli government investigation would do. So watch out for the next instalment: Israel finding itself guilty of war crimes and delivering Benjamin Netanyahu to the International Criminal Court.