WikiLeaks cable: NSA request new position in Wellington

This is one of the diplomatic cables about New Zealand held by Wikileaks.

4 August, 2004

This record is a partial extract of the original cable.

The full text of the original cable is not available.


1. (S) The National Security Agency (NSA) has requested a new, permanent position in Wellington attached to, but not residing at, the Embassy (reftel) - a Deputy Special U.S. Liaison Officer. Based on a thorough review of the policy and resource implications of this request, the Ambassador recommends that the State Department approve this request. He believes that the potential benefits of the new position - in terms of closer signals intelligence cooperation with New Zealand - far outweigh the additional administrative burden it will place on the Embassy.

2. (S) The Ambassador's recommendation reflects the following analysis. The new position will advance US interests in New Zealand by improving liaison and cooperation on vital signals intelligence matters. This is an area where the US and NZ already work together closely and profitably, and continuing to build and expand that relationship clearly stands to benefit both countries.

This is especially true in the post-September 11 environment, where NZ sigint capabilities significantly enhance our common efforts to combat terrorism in the region and the world. The Embassy already has a close working relationship with the NZ Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) that will be enhanced by the establishment of this new position. Embassy also has an understanding with NSA that the new position will cover Congressionally mandated information security requirements that neither the Defense Attache Office nor our State officers have the technical expertise to undertake.

3. (S) On administrative matters, the GCSB will provide the new NSA officer with office space; office furniture; computer, telephone and other equipment and supplies. NSA will fully fund the position and will pay for housing and purchase all residential furnishings directly. NSA will contract with the Embassy for the following ICASS services: Basic Package; Community Liaison Office services; Financial Management Services (medium level support); General Services (low level support); and Short-Term Residential Lease Building Operations. As a result of these arrangements, the resource impact of the new position on this Special Embassy Program post will be minimized, and can be fully absorbed within post's current ICASS system.

4. (S) Based on the scenario above, there should be no start-up costs associated with this new position. Using Embassy's FY 2004 service costs as a base, the total annual estimated cost of providing ICASS services is USD 23,649.

5. (S) Embassy recommends that Washington agencies determine the appropriate level and type of accreditation for this new position.


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