Document Type: 
Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
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Document Creation Date: 
December 22, 2016
Document Release Date: 
January 19, 2012
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Case Number: 
Publication Date: 
September 3, 1985
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PDF icon CIA-RDP90-00965R000200760007-3.pdf107.82 KB
Declassified in Part - Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2012/01/19: CIA-RDP90-00965R000200760007-3 WASHINGTON TIMES ANRICLE WUM 3 September 1985 ON PACA 0-h .-- bickering no longer joking matter for Lange By Tom Breen wan nUs In March, New Zealand's prime minister was in a joking mood. Asked if he was upset by Washing- ton's angry reaction to his decision to ban US. warships from New Zea- land ports, Prime Minister David Lange replied, "If they really want to [unnerve] us, they should cut off 'Dallas' and the 'A-Team. Nobody, including Mr. Lange, is laughing now. "New Zealanders are concerned that the United States is getting the impression that we're all anti- American down here since the rift,' Bob Fox, editor of the Wellington Evening Post said yesterday. "Noth- ing could be further from the truth. Few of us feel that way." Still, the unlikely feud between the United States and its tiny South Pacific ally has threatened the sta- bility of the 34-year-old ANZUS defense pact among Australia, New Zealand and the United States, creat- ing a rift Washington never envi- sioned and one that confuses Americans because of the longtime and close relationship between the two nations. "What this squabble has done;' said one congressional foreign- affairs specialist, "is to upset the entire ANZUS applecart. Sure, New Zealand only has 3 million people and defense forces of 12,000, but the US. obviously is having a lot of prob- lems in the world today and can't afford to lose a South Pacific friend, big or little. Everyone is upset, because most people feel that New Zealand has no beef with us:" At the same time, said the special- ist and several others interviewed recently, New Zealand can little afford to jeopardize its security pact with either the United States or Aus- tralia. Out fire in the South Pacific 1300 miles from Australia _ it is vul- nerable and needs aetess to S. and A as well as orotect#!P dtbtlld a crisis_ US. policy dictates that no nuclear- ____ armed or revesse M described that way, the United States a stov short o severe sanc- tions but has cut ocut off-the oow of ~mteT- enc information. The deteriorating relations recently have begun to disturb a wide range of New Zealand officials, including Mr. Lange, who later this month will send an emissary to Washington in an attempt to patch things up. Further, Mr. Lange indi- cated early last week he was willing to relax his position on banning war- ships, in order to restore New Zealand-U.S. ties. Meanwhile, State Department officials are encouraged, spec- ulating that an end to the six-month freeze might be coming shortly. Such optimism, however, might be premature, The Washington Times interviews indicate. Despite Mr. Fox's contention that his countrymen generally are fond of Americans, there appears to be a growing anti-nuclear fear across New Zealand that eventually may strain relations with the United States and possibly Australia to a. point they can't be repaired. Said a spokesman for moderate Republican Sen. William Cohen of Maine, "The senator feels like a lot of people here [on Capitol Hill]: With New Zealand impairing the way the ANZUS alliance functions and being recalcitrant, we [the United States] should exercise our options. Frankly, New Zealand's [newly] relaxed position seems nothing more than a subtle rhetorical shift:' Many congressional liberals and conservatives support Mr. Cohen's view that the U.S. obligation to defend and trade with New Zealand should end if that nation continues to balk on its ANZUS obligations, which includes allowing U.S. ships into its ports. Moreover, argue experts and poli- ticians in the United States, New Zealand anti-nuclear activists should be directing their wrath at France, not the United States. France, the only nation to conduct recent nuclear tests in the South Pacific, has been implicated in the bombing and sinking of the Green- peace ship-Rainbow Warrior. The he htened anti-nuclear activity,:hi^ever. appears to have to transformerd=Jilt4nations with such capabilitW ipto ;enemies, of sorts, for many New Zealaziders. Said activist Philadel Bunkle: "We [want] to gge~tt a message across that times [1ia'vd]' changed. People don't feel partidularly protected [by superpowers), and the old argu- ments have worn a little thin:' Added Labor Party member Helen Clark: "There are no threats to New Zealand's security. The only nation that has sufficient military projection to invade us is the United States, so were not that worried:' With that-- in mind, the anti- nuclear wing' of Mr. Lange's Labor Party moved in Christchurch over the weekend to persuade the prime minister not to soften his stand on the ban of US. warships, although most diplomatic sources expect Mr. Lange to continue moving Wward an understanding withrWoshington. For his part, Australlin Prime Minister Robert Hawke has tried to end the U.S.-New Zealand squabble by making sure that a treaty signed by South Pacific nations last month to make the South Pacific a nuclear free zone still would allow the transit of nuclear-powered and nuclear armed warships through the region. That would end France's nuclear testing but would protect U.S. secu- rity interests. Mr. Hawke and others - in Wash- ington and throughout the South Pacific - admit they are tired of a feud that no one expected. STAT Declassified in Part - Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2012/01/19: CIA-RDP90-00965R000200760007-3 -