Reprinted from Michael Field's website :
RFMF's Strategic Plan
Pope Benedict has not joined the RFMF - despite appearances to the contrary on the cover of the military's "Strategic Plan".
Quite why he is there, along with a rather dopey quote from Martha Washington about happiness, is far from clear but the eight page document offers clues to the thinking behind this most political of forces.
They say their "overarching objective" is to rebuild Fiji into a "non racial, culturally vibrant and united, well governed, truely democratic nation...."
They say they are going to do it through the People's Charter; an otherwise forgotten document from an earlier phase of Voreqe Bainimarama's life when he played around with consultation.
For the rest of us, the People's Charter is well and truly on the same scrap heap the commodore put the constitution on.
In this document - which was published this week on the RFMF's new website - the president is Josefa Iloiloi. Word hasn't got up the hill to the barracks yet.
The document is full of management-speak that would be familiar to anybody running a used car franchise. They even use capital letters: "MAXIMISING MANAGEMENT EFFECTIVENESS".
At one point the author of this document says there are different schools of thought about the meaning of management.
Is the RFMF selling hamburgers, or is it an army?
Sorry, no. The answer was at the very next point in the document: "The RFMF as a professional institution is to promote the practice of Maximising Management Effectiveness."
What about shooting people?
Buried right down in the document we get to some military talk: "We want to be a smart military force that enhances its capabilities beyond its size through professionalism, resourcefulness, knowledge and skills, leadership, discipline and adherence to its ethos and values... The RFMF Mission is to enhance the security of the Fiji Islands and protect its people and interests in peace, crisis and in conflict."
Happily the RFMF sticks to its core business - "maintaining a war fighting capability".
In the newly developed website, the RFMF complains that the European Union "holds a somewhat rigid stand toward a return to democracy but it is somehow more 'commonsensical' to that held by our regional neighbours Australia and New Zealand."
It goes on to say that Fiji is instead cementing ties with China, India and South Korea. It adds that if New Zealand and Australia could get involved again in Fiji and "bring some dignity to its 'shabby' foreign policy towards Fiji; win back political influence and ground lost to the Asians...."
Perhaps one should not be surprised at the limited intelligence displayed here; one of the problems of ruthless censorship is that even the censors lose grip on reality.
They possibly have lost sight of the fact that New Zealand is the world's only OECD nation to have a free trade treaty with China - hardly "ground lost" to Asia.... And New Zealand and India are now negotiating a same free trade deal with India. And have one with South Korea.
What Fiji gets from China is scraps from its rather large aid table.... and how come no one noticed just how modest and small China's contribution was to Fiji in the wake of Cyclone Tomas.
Indeed, one could say China was being mean-spirited and cheap....
But the people of Fiji need not worry; you might get cheap trinkets from China, but when it comes to being their when an old friend is in need - well, the RNZAF will be there long before the RFMF gets there...
14 April 2010. Vinaka Mikeli.