The Telegraph’s defence editor labelled Jacinda Ardern the “West’s woke weak link” today after New Zealand signalled it will break with Anglophone allies to pursue a new relationship with its closest trading partner, China.
Last year defence ministers from Britain, America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand made a public commitment to meet shared security challenges via the “Five Eyes” intelligence-sharing network, set up during the Cold War era, and even to expand its remit.
But in signs that New Zealand is looking to enhance its ties to China, the country indicated it will opt out of the network to pursue its own bilateral relationship.
The decision has ruffled the feathers of the Telegraph’s Con Coughlin, who hit out at the country’s “tiresomely woke prime minister” and dubbed the country’s decision to leave Five Eyes “naive”.
He said: “Ms Ardern’s ill-judged preference for fostering closer ties with Beijing will inevitably reignite the debate in Western intelligence circles as to whether New Zealand, which has long been regarded as the weakest link in the alliance, should retain its membership.
“By choosing Beijing at the expense of her Five Eyes allies, Ms Ardern risks eroding New Zealand’s credibility on the global political map.”
Judging by the comments, several readers were also not best pleased by the move.
S Hammett wrote “Go woke, get nuked” in the comment section, while Raina Brooks added: “Nobody as young and as silly as Arden is should be anywhere near government, she still hasn’t grown out of that socialist/communist stage.”
Others suggested the “entire West has become a pathetic and weak cabal of do-gooders,” with one person saying “woke people don’t value democracy”.