Barry Soper is Newstalk ZB's Political Editor

Barry Soper on NZ visit from VIPs: 'Rubberneckers will be sorely disappointed'

Add a comment
Barry Soper: 'There has been a lot of excitement in our picture postcard Queenstown over the past couple of days.' Photo / Mark Mitchell
Barry Soper: 'There has been a lot of excitement in our picture postcard Queenstown over the past couple of days.' Photo / Mark Mitchell

There has been a lot of excitement in our picture postcard Queenstown over the past couple of days.

They'd been told a visit from a VVIP was imminent and the buzz was that Barack Obama was about to drop in for a game of golf with his old buddy John Key who's always said the former President would be visiting sometime after last year's election that saw another golfer, who owns his own courses, Donald Trump being elected.

Trouble is Key's currently in Japan with his new billionaire boss Haruhisa Handa.

But the Queenstown rubberneckers will be sorely disappointed over the weekend.

They're unlikely to recognise the so called VVIPs, given they're only important in their own networks but they'll be outnumbered by their burly bodyguards.

The Beehive's remaining mum about the taxpayer funded meeting, confirmation of it will likely come next week after it's all over.

The meeting involves the United States, Britain, Canada, Australia and of course our country and it's the spies' club known as Five Eyes.

The man who was credited by many with bringing Donald Trump to power, FBI director James Comey, will head the big wigs attending.

As the United States' top lawman he was responsible for the on again off again email investigation into Hillary Clinton during the closing stages of the Presidential race which undoubtedly damaged the woman who Trump had repeatedly been calling a crook during the vicious campaign.

Five Eyes was a clandestine club for more than 60 years until it was declassified just seven years ago.

It's been described as the inner circle of allies who don't spy on each other but do spy on virtually everyone else.

The no spy rule extends to not tapping the phones of their leaders or their officials.

Whether they spy on each other's citizens is a grey area though with some observers saying they do, which they're certainly capable of, to get around laws preventing them from spying on their own citizens.

So if you're out and about in Queenstown over the next few days, it'd pay to keep your own counsel, particularly if you spot a bloke wearing a trilby and trench coat.

Seriously though, this meeting will no doubt concentrate on the sabre rattling between Pyongyang and Washington and how to de-escalate the tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

Hopefully that'll lead to words speaking louder than actions, although given the secrecy of this gathering, only time will tell on that score.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW
Barry Soper is Newstalk ZB's Political Editor

Have your say

1200 characters left

By and large our readers' comments are respectful and courteous. We're sure you'll fit in well.
View commenting guidelines.

© Copyright 2017, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf03 at 26 May 2017 20:45:19 Processing Time: 585ms