John Key is definitely not going to be pleased with his Fiji trip.
Sadly it was all too predictable. The government has been misled for the better part of a decade over Fiji. National had a chance to distance themselves from the petulance of Helen Clark’s sanctions and rudeness but Murray McCully kept everything in place and the government lectured and hectored and made ultimatums to Fiji.
The Fijians ignored it all and set themselves on a path to true freedom, creating a new constitution, abandoning colonial institutions and systemic racism to create one Fiji for all Fijians irrespective of race.
The Media party and our government insisted a corrupt government elected by a corrupt electoral process be re-installed…because democracy. They keep on calling Bainimarama’s actions a coup, but in reality it was a revolution…not unlike that which England went through, or the United States…except without the bloodshed.
Don’t be fooled by the polite smiles shared by John Key and Frank Bainimarama as they greeted each other on Friday morning.
Keys delegation would have been seething over the Fijian prime minister’s extraordinary diplomatic slapdown at an official state dinner in Suva on Thursday evening.
Bainimarama used the speech – and the rare presence of New Zealand media – to rehash 10 years worth of personal grievances against New Zealand and Australia and deliberately embarrassed Key by publicly demolishing some of his talking points for their Friday meeting, including restrictions on the press.
It didn’t go unnoticed either that Bainimarama was hardly effusive in his acknowledgement of New Zealand’s assistance during Cyclone Winston, our biggest ever post World War II deployment.
If a picture can speak a thousand words it was visible on the blank faces of those seated at the top table with Key, a group which included some of his closest advisors and Foreign Minister Murray McCully.
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