Thanks Lord Ashcroft

December 5th, 2007 at 7:37 am by David Farrar

A big thanks to Michael, Lord Ashcroft for his very generous $200,000 reward for information leading to the return of the stolen military medals.

It will be a tragedy if they are never found.

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12 Responses to “Thanks Lord Ashcroft”

  1. Craig Ranapia (1,915 comments) says:

    Wonder if the Greens are going to issue a PR revealing the deep, dark non-secret that Lord Ashcroft is not only a peer and a rich bastard but a Tory? There must be some despicable secret agenda to help the National Party buy the next election!

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  2. Inventory2 (10,342 comments) says:

    Will the government accept the good Lord’s kind offer, or will they decide that it is “big money” and run a mile?

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  3. Ross Nixon (559 comments) says:

    Here’s an obvious solution.
    Get “exact” replicas made.
    Should cost less than $200,000!

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  4. Brian Smaller (4,023 comments) says:

    The difference is Ross Nixon, the replica is exactly that. I have a replica VC. It is a piece of bronze. Costs about $50 some years ago off eBay. I have also seen Sgt Keith Elliot wearing his VC at various services many years ago and my father saw him wearing it in action. Without provenance the medal is nothing.

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  5. tim barclay (886 comments) says:

    A tragedy the Labour Government should assume responsibility. It happened on their watch so how did lax security allow $20 million of items of sacred significance to NZ get stolen. WHAT are they doing about it apart from blaming the National Party and the Exclusive Bretheran.

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  6. Dave Mann (1,224 comments) says:

    I honestly wonder whether it is wise to offer $200,000 as a ‘reward’ for the return of the medals. While the intent is no doubt honourable, I think this will only encourage thieves to continue thieving.

    Maybe it would have been better to spend $200,000 on engaging a top-flight private investigation team to track the medals down and get them back by any means possible (including breaking all the bones of the people who stole them).

    And, guys, let’s be a bit adult here. The lefties are not in the frame. This kind of crime could happen at any time and who is the government of the day is totally irrelevant.

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  7. Craig Ranapia (1,915 comments) says:

    And, guys, let’s be a bit adult here. The lefties are not in the frame. This kind of crime could happen at any time and who is the government of the day is totally irrelevant.

    Indeed, Dave.

    First, I’d note the theft is the subject of an ongoing Police investigation that (sensibly) is not being conducted through the media.

    And I don’t want to get into an lengthy (and rather boring to 99% of readers, I’m sure) historical rant, but the Army Museum at Waiouru has never exactly been awash in public largess for all kinds of reasons.

    From the Museum’s own website:

    For many years New Zealanders had been reluctant to commemorate their military history and as a result plans for a national war museum had not eventuated.

    The New Zealand Army had maintained small collections and displays at Dunedin, Burnham, Linton and Waiouru. In 1964, a small museum was established in the original Waiouru Homestead and it wasn’t until thirteen years later that the Chief of General Staff, Major-General Ronald Hassett (a veteran of WWII and Korea) launched “Operation Heritage” to develop a national Army Museum.

    The Museum was designed to function as a memorial; to acquire, preserve and display aspects of New Zealand’s military history; and to serve as a research and teaching facility.

    Events moved rapidly: the Army Memorial Museum Trust Board was incorporated in August 1977. Spearheaded by a well-publicised run across New Zealand by Major Albert Kiwi and his dog Freefall, fund-raising got underway. The builders soon followed and Army Engineers and voluntary labour braved a tough winter to complete the Sir Miles Warren designed fortress-like structure in just 276 days. The Governor General opened the 1300-square metre Queen Elizabeth II Army Memorial Museum on 15 October 1978.

    [Source: http://www.armymuseum.co.nz/about-us/ ]

    Remind me, Tim, who was on the Treasury benches in 1978? From the very beginning, the museum has operated on the proverbial smell of an oily rage, and the enormous generosity of servicemen and women, veterans and their families, collectors and military historians. But if you want to put a party political angle on this, let’s be fair and spread the blame around successive governments.

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  8. bwakile (757 comments) says:

    How about a law which states that stealing National treasures is Treason and punishable by death or at least a 6 month tour of duty with the SAS.

    People do this stuff because the rewards far outweigh the punishments if caught.

    Actually that goes for all crime.

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  9. ZenTiger (435 comments) says:

    Naturally, Helen Clark was very suspicious of big money offered by a private individual. Can’t have anyone but the government controlling the situation. I’ve linked this to the same petty attitudes as trying to stop John Boscawen from spending his own money to help fight the EFB. These guys are Knights of the Realm

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  10. Kent Parker (451 comments) says:

    Certainly, after this theft, any more national treasures will be kept locked up in some secret location while $50 replicas sit in the display cases.

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  11. toby1845 (194 comments) says:

    “I have also seen Sgt Keith Elliot wearing his VC at various services many years ago and my father saw him wearing it in action.”

    Brian – your father might have seen Elliott winning the VC, but would not have seen him wearing it in action. Medals aren’t worn in action. In fact, from memory Elliot was brought home very soon after being awarded the medal.

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  12. sicoff (28 comments) says:

    ‘Will the government accept the good Lord’s kind offer, or will they decide that it is “big money” and run a mile?’

    ‘Naturally, Helen Clark was very suspicious of big money offered by a private individual. ‘

    Personally I think michael is using smoke and mirrors…he was the guy offering millions of dollars for the VC and is known to be obsessed about owning the biggest collection, what a prime candidate to be the end user for a ‘hot’ VC me thinks!

    I too would be restrained in my enthuisiasm at this (early) stage of the investigation.

    I believe he is already under investigation on this matter…

    [DPF: And that's 30 demerits for such defamatory comments]

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