His motives for returning the SAS to the disaster of Afghanistan - while winding up the rather successful peace keeping mission - is obvious, as obvious as it was when Clark sent them in. They want the USA to back up its nice words about New Zealand being "a very, very, very close friend" with some actions you'd expect of very, very, very close friends - like a free trade deal (3).
It is blood for butter all over again.
Which doesn't make Phil Goff's condemnation of the redeployment any less opportunistic, pusillanimous and hypocritical. But what do you expect from Free Trade Phil (4)?
1 - "Five more years in Afghanistan," by Colin Espiner in The Press. Reproduced on stuff.co.nz, 11th of August, 2009. (http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/2738287/Five-more-years-in-Afghanistan)
2 - "Labour in all-out assault on Key," unattributed artilce in The Press, publsihed 7th of August, 2007. (http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/politics/26298/Labour-in-all-out-assault-on-Key)
3 - "NZ a 'very very very close friend,'" unattributed ONE News story, 27th of March, 2002. (http://tvnz.co.nz/content/90126)
4 - As described previosuly on lefthandpalm: http://lefthandpalm.blogspot.com/2008/02/new-zealand-secures-infamous-first-fta.html