Responding to New Zealand's Challenge to Western Security in the South Pacific


Responding to New Zealand's Challenge to Western Security in the South Pacific

July 24, 1986 19 min read Download Report
Richard Fisher
Distinguished Fellow in China Policy

(Archived document, may contain errors)

No. 48 July 24, 1986



Pending before the New Zealand Parliament is a Nuclear Free Zone bill. If it passes, it effectively would rip up the 35-year-old U.S.-New Zealand security alliance. The bill directly undermines the terms of the ANZUS Treaty, which for more than three decades has linked Australia, New Zealand, and the U.S. in a mutual defense relationship. Even without this bill, New Zealand's actions have undermined regional defenses so much that last month Secretary of State George Shultz declared that the U.S. will no longer "extend its security responsibility to New Zealand."

This unprecedented break in the chain of Western alliances-is a direct result of the New Zealand Labor government's anti-nuclear policies. since July 1984 the government of Prime-Minister David Lange has banned nuclear-powered and nuclear-armed ships from its territory. In effect, this bans the U.S. Navy from New Zealand ports and waters because of its longstanding policy to neither confirm nor deny the presence of nuclear weapons aboard warships.. This comes at a time when the Soviet Union is increasing its military presence in the Asia-Pacific region dramatically and is seeking to exploit a growing "peace movement" in the South Pacific.

The New Zealand Labor government ostensibly seeks to promote an "independent" foreign policy,, "less aligned" with such traditional allies as the U.S. and Britain. Lange wants an alliance that does not require New Zealand to be defended by nuclear weapons. He further wants to promote his policies as an example for the rest of the Pacific to follow. While doing this, however, he seems to ignore the

mounting Soviet threat to peace in New Zealand--just as Lange's predecessors a half-century ago ignored the growing Japanese military threat.

Though public opinion polls in New Zealand show strong support for Lange's anti-nuclear policies, they also back New Zealand remaining in ANZUS. The U.S. should take this pro-ANZUS sentiment into account in forging a policy that responds to Lange's shredding of the U.S.-New Zealand alliance. The U.S., therefore, should mount an expanded information campaign in New Zealand to explain American policies. The U.S. should take a higher profile in New Zealand to counter Labor government misinformation and allocate greater resources to U.S. Information Agency projects.

Washington also must counter the strategic drift away from the U.S. in the South Pacific by increasing efforts to promote d 'emocratic development among the South Pacific island states. Quick resolution of the longstanding U.S.-Pacific Islands fishing rights disputes plus increases in U.S. economic assistance and diplomatic presence will go far to bolster the island states' self-sufficiency and blunt further Soviet, Cuban, and Libyan opportunities in the region.

Finally, Washington must continue standing firm with the Lange government. When Labor passes its nuclear free zone bill, Washington should formally withdraw its security guarantees under ANZUS. In order to avoid the spread of Now Zealand-type policies elsewhere in the Western Alliance, the U.S. must demonstrate that they will not work in New Zealand.


since its signing in September 1951, the Australian, New Zealand, U.S. (ANZUS) Treaty has-served the interest of the three nations. Australia and New Zealand needed a strong ally in the post-World War II period, while the U.S. viewed ANZUS as an integral part of its security arrangements with Japan, the Philippines, and-Thailand to counter the expansion of Communism in Asia.

ANZUS is a much looser alliance than NATO, requiring no permanent staff or assigned military forces. Article III of the ANZUS Treaty states that members will "consult together whenever in the opinion of any one of them the territorial integrity, political independence, or security of any of the Parties is threatened in the Pacific." Australia and New-Zealand supported U,.S. military efforts in.Korea and Vietnam; and as recently as June 1984, then Assistant Secretary of State Paul Wolfowitz said,, "Australians and New Zealanders should rest assured that if any emergency confronts them, the American system is capable of decisive action and capable of rendering it." The main benefits of ANZUS derive from Article II, which mandates that the partners develop their "individual and collective capacity to resist armed attack." The 1951 Radford-Collins agreement between the U.S. and Australia, which New Zealand joined in 1978, provides for naval planning, liaison, and set areas of maritime responsibility in wartime.1L Annual naval, air, and army exercises with the U.S. gave Australian and New Zealand forces experience vital to their readiness. Australia and New Zealand also have access to modern U.S. defense technology, including F-18 Hornet fighter bombers and P-3 Orion anti-submarine aircraft, with their highly sophisticated electronics.

In turn, the U.S. has enjoyed access to ports and airfields in Australia and New Zealand.. This helps the U.S. maintain forces in the Indian Ocean, the South Pacific, and maintain contact with U.S. non-military facilities in Antarctica. The U.S. nuclear strategic deterrent, meanwhile, has benefited from communications and intelligence-gathering facilities in Australia at Pine Gap, Nurrungar, and the Northwest Cape. In return,, Australia receives special access to U.S. intelligence.

Australia and New Zealand have shouldered responsibility for promoting political and economic stability in the South Pacific. In the South Pacific Forum, the main regional political organization, Australia and New Zealand consistently have backed efforts to deny Soviets entry into the area. For 1985-1986, Australia is allocating some $36 million for economic assistance in the South Pacific. For their part, leaders of the island states seem assured by the proximity of Australian and New Zealand forces and their ANZUS connection to the U.S.

The members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)--Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, Singapore and Brunei--see ANZUS as a stabilizing force on their southern flank. A 1971 agreement with Singapore, Malaysia, and Britain allows for direct New Zealand and Australian contribution to Southeast Asian security through exercises and bilateral military assistance. New Zealand maintains a battalion of troops in Singapore, while Australia occasionally bases fighter-bombers and P-3 Orion anti-submarine patrol aircraft at Malaysia's Butterworth Air Base.

1. Thomas-Durrel Young, "Australian Bites Off More Than the RAN Can Chew," Pacific Defense Rcoorter March 1986, p. 15. LABOR'S "NUCLEAR FREE" POLICY

During New Zealand's 1984 election campaign, Labor Party leader David Lange vowed to make New Zealand "nuclear free." Soon after Lange's election in July, Washington cancelled pending visits to New Zealand by U.S. Navy ships to avoid provoking him. Since the U.S., as a matter of policy, refuses to identify which of its ships carry nuclear weapons, the visit of any U.S. warship could have been challenged under Lange's self-proclaimed "nuclear free,, policy. The Reagan Administration hoped that Lange would recognize the damage his nuclear free concept was inflicting on New Zealand. There was no sign of this in February 1985 when Lange refused a request for a port visit by the conventionally powered U.S. destroyer Buchanan. Washington refused to assure Lange that the Buchanan was carrying no nuclear weapons. In response to the Buchanan incident, the U.S. in March withdrew from exercise and intelligence-sharing arrangements involving New Zealand. It did not withdraw the basic security guarantees under ANZUS.

Last November, Lange's government introduced legislation to make New Zealand officially a nuclear free zone. In addition to banning nuclear-powered and nuclear-armed ships from its territory, the legislation prohibits any New Zealand citizen living abroad to "aid,, assist, or abet any person to manufacture,,,fcquire, possess or have control over any nuclear explosive devise.

Then Lange, sounding like a Third World ideologue, attacked the concept of the ANZUS Treaty itself. It placed New Zealand, he said, in a dependent relationship with the U.S. in return for security guarantees that are only "perceived" because they are not specifically stated in the treaty.3 Lange also maintains that ANZUS was never a nuclear alliance requiring New Zealand to be defended by nuclear weapons. He then rejected the notion that New Zealand is threatened by the Soviet Union or nuclear weapons.. Thus, he argued, New Zealand..... is "asking for trouble if it claims to be defended by an ally's nuclear weapons." 4

Lange's position contradicts that of the New Zealand leaders who signed the ANZUS Treaty because they realized the increasing importance of nuclear weapons. These leaders supported U.S. and

2. New Zealand Nuclear Free Zone, Disarmament, and Arms Control Bill, clause 5.

3. David Lange, "New Zealand's Complaint Against the U.S.," Newsday December 31, 1985, P. 3 9.

4. lbigf British nuclear testing in the South Pacific and did not dispute U.S. entitlement to use its nuclear deterrent to protect its ANZUS partners.- And the 1963 ANZUS Council meeting stated that denuclearization of the Southwest Pacific "would destabilize the existing strategic balance and would increase therisk of aggression.196


New Zealand Foreign Secretary Mervin Norrish argued recently that, due to a shift in trading patterns away from traditional allies, such as Britain, New Zealand must be responsive to a "whole range of 7 national sensitivities."

There are over 200 peace groups in New Zealand,, and over 80 percent of the population of 3.2 million is covered by self-proclaimed nuclear free zones. A March 1985 poll showed that 75 percent of New Zealanders approved of Lange's policy to ban entry of nuclear weapons into New Zealand. However, a September 1985 poll showed that over 70 percent of the nation wanted to remain in ANZUS.

Lange and his wing of the Labor Party seem unrelenting in their anti-nuclear campaign. At times, though, the policy seems more anti-U.S. than anti-nuclear. The 1985 annual Labor Party Conference, for example, passed three resolutions calling for New Zealand's withdrawal 8from ANZUS and condemning U.S. interference in Nicaragua. Labor leader Helen Clark, Chairman of the Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee, recently said that for New Zealand there will be "no more Koreas,, no more Vietnams, and no Philippines in the future." She is rumored to be under consideration as the next Minister of Defense.

At the Auckland Labor Party Conference this May,,.Lange..stated:.. "It is for instance outrageous to us that the defense of Western Europe is based on NATO's promise to blow up the world if the Russians attack them with overwhelming conventional forces." Two months

5. J. G. Starke, The ANZUS Treaty Alliance (Victoria: Melbourne University Press, 1965), p. 230.

6. IhW,

7. Mervin Norrish, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, "The Changing Context of New Zealand's Foreign Policy," April 29, 1986.

8. Patricia Herbert, "Government Foreign Affairs Action Endorsed," The Press September 2,1985. earlier he tried to sell Philippine President Corazon AqUino'on Labor's anti-nuclear policies. He also criticizes the Japanese for not being sufficiently anti-nuclear. 10

The opposition National Party opposes Labor's ship ban but does not campaign vigorously against the anti-nuclear issue because of its popular appeal. Nevertheless, opposition leader Jim Bolger recently stated, "There is a feeling in the heartland of New Zealand about this country becoming a left-wing non-aligned nation more 11 in line with Cuba than the United States, Great Britain or Australia."

New Zealand has suffered most from Lange's position. Morale in the nation's armed forces has plummeted. Naval personnel levels have dropped 23 percent from resignations alone. Readiness will decrease rapidly as a result of the loss of 6,000 man-days of training with the U.S. just this year. And under the pending nuclear free zone legislation, countless New Zealanders could find themselves in trouble. Indeed, New Zealand officers could spend ten years in prison for even attending a U.S. military staff college.


Economic and political tensions are rising among the fourteen major island nations of this vast but sparsely populated region. The economies of the island nations are tied to tourism and a few major primary commodity exports such as sugar and copra. The currently depressed international commodity markets and growing populations present major unemployment problems for many of the microstates. 12 Many states actually depend on foreign aid to maintain minimum standards of living. Though they are fundamentally pro-Western, leadership in the states is passing from the post-World War II generation (typified by Fiji's Prime Minister Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara, who supports U.S. Navy port visits),,,to leaders unfamiliar.with the. U.S. role in their liberation from the Japanese.

9. Tom Breen, "Lange Seeks Aquino Backing to Make Pacific Nuclear-Free," The Washington Times March 31, 1986, p. 9.

10. Asahi Shimbun March 4, 1986, p. 2,in FBIS Asia-Pacific March 11, 1986, p. 5.

11. Nigel Austin, "Polls Indicate Bolger's Charisma May be a Winner," The Bulletin, July 1, 1986, p. 82.

12. Dora Alves, "The South Pacific Islands: New Focus Needed for U.S. Policy," Heritage Foundation Asian Studies Center Backgrounder No. 34, August 28, 1985, p. 3 Many of the new leaders,, such as Vanuatu's Father Walter Lini and Kiribati's Iremia Tabai who seem less familiar with distant Soviet totalitarianism, tend to blame the more visible West for their islands' problems.

Because U.S. law does not recognize international economic jurisdiction over migratory fish such as tuna, U.S. boats regularly fish in territories which the island states claim as their economic exclusion zones. islanders argue that they have little else to export and that U.S. fishermen should at least pay a tuna access fee. Ill will toward the U.S. generated by this issue is compounded by hostile propaganda from anti-U.S. elements in the island states.

opposition to French nuclear testing at the Mururoa Atoll in French Polynesia is the main issue for the anti-nuclear moveyAent in Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific. The left wings of the Australian and New Zealand Labor parties actively promoted the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone Treaty signed last August by fifteen South Pacific Forum members, including Australia and New Zealand. The treaty prohibits signatories from acquiring nuclear weapons or stationing them within the zone, but does not obstruct passage of nuclear-armed or nuclear-powered ships. The treaty allows each state to determine its-own port visit policy for such ships. New Zealand's Lange predictably claims that even port visits by nuclear-armed warships violate the treaty.


The Soviet Union is expanding its military capability in Asia and apparently intends to gain a foothold among the vulnerable South Pacific microstates. Soviet military forces in Asia pose a direct threat to Western interests from Persian...Gulf.__ With its two anti-submarine aircraft carriers, 83 other major surface combatants, over 130 nuclear and conventionally powered submarines, the Pacific Fleet is the Soviet Navy's largest flotilla. In Vietnam's Cam Ranh Bay, the Soviets base about 25 ships and 16 BADGER strike bombers capable of carrying nuclear weapons. Soviet-Vietnamese amphibious naval assault exercises in April 1984 demonstrated the Soviet commitment to expanding its power-projection forces in the region. 13 Particularly worrisome are the two nuclear-powered

13. nThe Russians Are Landing," The Economist April 28, 1984, p. 47. aircraft carriers, similar to those deployed by the U.S., which Moscow is now building. 14 TWO ships of this kind could join the Pacific Fleet by the year 2000.

The Soviets flex their muscles to inflame fears of nuclear war. This creates political pressure on South Pacific governments to support unilateral disarmament. At a news conference in Canberra,, Australia, last January, Deputy Chief of the Information Organization of the Soviet Foreign Ministry Yuri Nazarkin praised the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone Treaty and said, "The Soviet Union is not going to target its missiles to the South Pacific ... I think New Zealand's actions are quite helpful.1116

In Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific, the Soviets are giving the anti-nuclear movement covert support. They and the trade unions also are soft targets for Soviet propaganda. Since the early 1960s, for example, Moscow has exerted influence in New Zealand through the Socialist Unity Party (SUP). Though it has only 200 members, they include such key individuals as Federation of Labor Secretary Ken Douglas. FOL is the largest union umbrella organization in New Zealand and is affiliated with the World Federation of Trade Unions, a Soviet front."s In 1980 the Soviet ambassador to New Zealand was expelled after being caught personally giving several thousand dollars to the SUP. That same year, pro-Soviet trade unionists in Australia and New Zealand organized the Pacific Trade Union Forum (PTUF) to promote the anti-nuclear movement in the unions of South Pacific microstates. 17 Many of PTUF's organizers are affiliated with the World Federation of Trade Unions, and David Lange spoke before the PTUF conference in May.

For over a decade, Moscow has sought to extend its influence in the South Pacific through economic and diplomatic means, and is just now making dramatic gains. The Soviets, for example, last August offered the tiny island nation of Kiribati (pop. 57,000) $1.7 million annually to allow Soviet trawlers-to fish.-in.-the country.l.s.sconomic-........ exclusion zone. Though the sum seems small, the money amounts to one tenth of Kiribati's national budget. The economically hard-pressed

14. Ulrich-Jochirn Shultz-Torge, "The Soviet Aircraft Carrier--An Update," Naval Forces, n.2, 1986, p. I 11.

15. "USSR Praises New Zealand," Evening Post (Wellington), January 24, 1986, p. 6.

16. "ANZUS: Why New Zealand Labor Changed Direction," News Weekly, February 6. 1985, p. 3.

17. John Whitehall, "Peace Movements in the South Pacific," Quadrant October 1983, p. 44. country found it almost impossible to refuse Moscow's deal. Fiji is now negotiating a similar Soviet fishing access agreement.

Vanuatu also faces economic problems and, under the leadership of Father Walter Lini, has become the most radical island state. In the past three months it has established relations with Libya and the Soviet Union and already has established relations, and receives economic aid from, Vietnam and Cuba. is Libya is already meddling in the French colony of New Caledonia by providing military training to radical indigenous Melanesians seeking independence from France.

Soviet diplomatic and commercial presence in the island nations will enable Moscow to foment instability. And if Moscow gains a military foothold there, the Soviets could outflank the U.S. if it loses access to bases in the Philippines.


The Australian Labor Government has just received an independent comprehensive defense review known as the "Dibb Report." This could form the basis of a government defense white paper later this year. The Dibb Report's central message is that Australia should adopt an "independent" defense doctrine focused primarily on protecting Australian territory. Its assumptions are that there is now no "conceivable prospect" of an invasion of Australia and that it will be at least ten years before such a threat could develop. 19

The Dibb Report recommends that the Australian Defense Forces (ADF) purchase ships and aircraft tailored to deny enemy access to a 1,000 mile zone of "direct military interest" around Australia. 20 This means that the ADF would not be equipped to operate in Southeast Asia and the South Pacific although they are, concedes the Dibb Report,,,a "sphere of primary strategic interest."

The Dibb Report recognizes ANZUS's-value-to Australia, but mainly- in terms of deterring Soviet aggression and as a means of gaining access to U.S. military technology and intelligence. The Report argues that current forms of cooperation--port and airfield access for

18. Greg Sheridan, "Liberation Ideology In Paradise," Australian May 10-11, 1986, p. 13; Francis Daniel, "Slowly, Soviets Move to Expand Presence in South Pacific," The Washington Times, July 1, 1986, p. 4D.

19. Report to the Minister of Defense by Mr. Paul Dibb, Review of Australia's Defense Cavabilities, Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra, March 1986, p. 1, 162.

20. Qid p. 4. U.S. ships and aircraft, the joint facilities, and political support--pre "sufficient" Australian contributions to the Alliance.:' Advises the Report: the "remote possibilities for calls of assistance under ANZUS should [not] influence the structure or equipment of the ADF,11 and that contributions to future conflicts beyond AustrgLlials defense zone will be small, amounting to a "gesture of support. """

Though ANZUS enjoys widespread Australian support, budget pressures are raising questions of whether Australia can sustain current levels of defense spending. In 1986, this came to about $6.6 billion in Australian dollars, or 3.1 percent of GNP.

ANZUS is also under attack in Australia from the left wing of the ruling Labor Party. The leftists polled 40 percent of delegate votes in the June 1984 Labor Party National Conference. Prime Minister Robert Hawke is strongly pro-American. But as Labor Party leader, he has had to concede to the left on certain issues, such as not allowing U.S. aircraft to land in Australia in February 1985 to monitor an XX missile test. His government also opposes the U.S. Strategic Defense Initiative and actively supports the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone Treaty.

The opposition Liberal Party, currently led by John Howard,' roundly criticizes Labor for these stands. The Dibb Report, charges Howard, contains an unrealistic assessment of the Soviet threat. The Liberal Party maintains that a strategy of denial is not appropriate to defending Australia's maritime access routes.


The crisis in ANZUS cannot be seen in isolation. If the New Zealand-Labor.-Party.l.s policies should be adopted in other allied countries-with strong anti-nuclear movements such as Britain,.Japan, West Germany, Australia, or Canada, the Western Alliance would suffer and extreme blow. Such peace movements, however, are not unprecedented. In the early 1980s, for example, they BWQpt several West European countries with the goal of preventing deployment of U.S. Pershing and cruise missiles in response to the Soviet SS-20 missile deployments. Washington was able to work with its allies to defuse the opposition. The missiles were deployed on schedule and remain unimpeded in place.

2 1. p. 47.

22. p. 47, 4. Just as Washington gave high priority to the earlier West European anti-nuclear movements, so now it must take developments in New Zealand very seriously. And as in the European case, Moscow's hand is-seen at work in the New Zealand anti-nuclear movement. The U.S. cannot allow this anti-nuclear movement to su6ceed and spread through the alliance. To do so would give Moscow solid proof that it can defeat the Western Alliance from within. A disintegration of ANZUS will increase doubts among the pro-Western states of Southeast Asia and the South Pacific of Washington's willingness to stem Soviet expansion. The task for the Reagan Administration thus is clear: to design a strategy for reversing the strategic drift away from the Western Alliance in the South Pacific.

When the crisis with New Zealand erupted in July 1984, the U.S. correctly responded in a low key manner, designed to reach a compromise. Throughout last year, though U.S. statements became sharper, they remained confined to the narrow defense issue. It is now clear that the Lange government correctly calculated that the U.S. would avoid rash action in deference to New Zealand sensitivity. But his anti-nuclear policies are now getting out of hand for they increasingly are melding with New Zealand nationalism. To make matters worse, Labor leaders following Lange may well be more radical on this matter.

When New Zealand enacts its nuclear free zone legislation, the U.S. should begin following a two-pronged strategy. On the one hand, Washington should get tough and formally withdraw its security guarantees to New Zealand, until it decides to honor its ANZUS Treaty ?bligations. Furthermore, it should continue to suspend participation in military exercises and intelligence-sharing involving New Zealand.

As the second prong of the U.S. strategy, Washington should hold out the possibility of full reconciliation of relations. The U.S. should not let ANZUS fade away. Washington can do this by taking a higher profile in New ensure that U.S. policy is being presented accurately to the New Zealand public. The U.S. should expand significantly its information effort to rebuild support for ANZUS in New Zealand and explain U.S. policies in Australia. Along with this, the U.S. Information Agency (USIA) should increase its program to bring New Zealanders to the U.S. and to facilitate exchanges between citizens of both countries. And, of course, Washington should not take such drastic action as imposing economic sanctions on New Zealand because of the near-permanent scars this would leave on the relationship.

The disintegration of ANZUS means that the U.S. must increase its military, political, and economic presence in the South Pacific. Since 1983, negotiations between the members of the South Pacific Forum (the main regional political organization joining the South Pacific island states), the Tuna Boat Owners Association, and the U.S. government have attempted to reach an equitable regional fishing agreement.

These negotiations must be completed as quickly as-possible to remove the main divisive issue in the region. it similarly is vital that the Administration receive the relatively modest funds it requests for aid to the region: $4.2 million in economic, military assistance and Peace corps support to Fiji in recognition of that country's pro-Western stance; $1.5 million to promote indigenous fishing'among the South Pacific Forum members; and funds to open full-time:U.S. consulates in the Solomons and in Western Samoa.

On the matter of the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone Treaty, Washington must stand firm. The U.S. should not sign on to the protocols of the treaty. Barring nuclear weapons from the zone would -inhibit U.S. forces from responding adequately to the growing possibility of.a Soviet threat in the region. The treaty, moreover,, serves mainly to undermine the Western nuclear deterrent. Instead of signing the treaty, the U.S. should devote more resources to explaining U.S. strategic policies to the island states.

The Dibb Report marks a retreat from Australia's previous willingness and ability to contribute to the common defense of Asia. Should Dibb's recommendations be adopted, Australian defense forces by the late 1990s would be limited to a 1,000-mile defense perimeter at the very time when the presence of at least one and possibly two Soviet nuclear-powered aircraft carriers will have altered the conventional balance of power in Asia. The Dibb prescription, rather than creating the "self reliant" strategy seeks,, actually will be making Australia more reliant on the U.S. to counter significantly improved Soviet forces.

At the recent ASEAN meeting in Manila, the U.S. and Australia agreed to continue their bilateral relationship under ANZUS in light of Secretary Shultz's statement that the U.S. would no'longer honor its security commitment to New Zealand. In lieu of-the annual ANZUS council meeting, Secretary Shultz and Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger, and their Australian counterparts, Foreign Minister William Hayden and Defense Minister Kim Beazley, will meet on August 10 and 11 in San Francisco. Given the expanding Soviet threat, the U.S. should ask Australia to consider how it could contribute to the common defense beyond Dibb's proposed 1,000 mile limit. An Australian long-range force projection capability will enhance its own defense and make it a more valuable alliance partner. in addition, the U.S. should consider holding a greater range of joint exercises with Australia to bolster the operational readiness of each partner.


By adopting strict anti-nuclear policies that violate its alliance support obligations, New Zealand unilaterally has destroyed ANZUS. The U.S. cannot force New Zealand to defend Itself,, but the U.S. must protect itself from New Zealand's actions. Several steps must be taken if New Zealand goes ahead and passes the pending anti-nuclear legislation. First, the U.S. should be explicit and unambiguous that it will not guarantee New Zealand's security as long as it continues to violate its treaty obligations. Second, the U.S. must take a higher profile in New Zealand to explain U.S. policies and rebuild support for the alliance. Third, the U.S. must increase its efforts in the South Pacific to counter the growing:anti-nuclear movement there,, solve the outstanding fishing access issue,, and blunt Soviet attempts to gain a foothold in the region. Congress, for its- part, must appropriate the Administration's funding requests for economic and fishing industry the South Pacific.

Finally, of course, Washington should hold out,for the possibility that New Zealand may reverse its policy. When it does, the U.S. should be ready to revive an alliance which for over three decades has protected New Zealanders and Americans alike and which has served as an integral part of the global Western security partnership.

Richard D. Fisher, Jr. Policy Analyst


Richard Fisher

Distinguished Fellow in China Policy