Australian Senator wants Kiwis punished over UN resolution
Australian anti-immigration party One Nation has called for sanctions on New Zealand over a United Nations resolution to end illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine.
Malcolm Roberts, One Nation's Federal Senator from Queensland, issued an official statement on New Zealand's actions, saying: "At the very least we should look at further cutting benefits for New Zealanders living in Australia."
The Senator also took aim at Kiwis contemplating moving to Australia: "Perhaps a tougher immigration policy aimed towards New Zealand would stop Kiwis from establishing settlements in Australia."
New Zealand sponsored the UN resolution as chair of the Security Council, along with Senegal, Malaysia and Venezuela on December 24 after Egypt pulled out under pressure from US President-elect Donald Trump and Israel.
The resolution was adopted 14-0 (the US abstained), and was the first the UN Security Council had adopted on Israel and Palestine in almost eight years. Mr Roberts says its actions like this which means "New Zealanders can't have nice things."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was outraged, recalling his ambassador from Wellington.
Israeli media then attacked New Zealand's colonial history of stealing land from Māori, calling the New Zealand Government "hypocrites".
Labour Party MP Kelvin Davis told Newshub Mr Roberts' statement shouldn't be taken seriously.
"There'll be an element of Australian society that loves what One Nation is saying, but the majority of Australians will see through it and see it for what it is.
"They're trying to create an enemy out of New Zealanders living in Australia as a platform for self-promotion, and I think the UN thing is just a bit of side issue.
Mr Davis says Mr Roberts "sounds like a bit of an idiot".
"I googled him and my fears were confirmed - he is a twit, he's a failure in his previous life in the mining industry, he become a political stalker, he's a climate change conspiracy theorist, I suspect he's been sniffing the chemtrails."
In 2011, Mr Roberts wrote to then Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard demanding to be exempted from paying the country's carbon tax. Mr Roberts claimed to be a "sovereign citizen" wanting independence from the Australian government's legal system.
Despite declaring his support for Israel in his statement, Mr Roberts has been linked to Holocaust denier and conspiracy theorist Eustace Mullins.
Now Mr Roberts works in Australia's parliament building - as a Federal Senator.
"He's a racist, and probably the saddest aspect of his entry into Australian politics and spending so much time in Canberra is that he's denied a village in Australia somewhere of its idiot," Mr Davis told Newshub.
"This is classic One Nation low-IQ politics where they create an enemy and they use the politic of hate and division."
Malcolm Roberts' Anzac mistake
Mr Roberts also brought up Anzac mythology in his statement, but appeared to get one basic fact very wrong.
"One Nation Party was appalled to see Australia's Kiwi cousins co-sponsor the UN resolution on the eve of the 100-year anniversary of the Battle of Beersheba, a watershed moment that solidified our two great nations' love of liberty," he said.
"2017 marks the centenary of the Anzacs' brave actions to free the Palestinian territory (now Israel) from Ottoman oppression of Christians, Jews and other groups.
"It would never have been possible for those brave Anzacs, charging as part of the Light Horse Brigade, to have ever thought that events 100 years later would go full circle and future generations would betray the very people they were about to liberate."
But New Zealand forces in Palestine during WWI weren't part of the Light Horse Brigade at all - they were in fact an all-Kiwi New Zealand Mounted Rifles Brigade and a separate military unit.
Almost 18,000 New Zealanders served in the unit in Sinai and Palestine during WWI.