Key will weather the storm

John Key
John Key
OPINION: Prime Minister John Key will be relieved the much talked about Moment of Truth passed by without seriously damaging his credibility.

There was no great reveal, no smoking gun, nothing to make New Zealanders believe they are being illegally spied upon.

The Left will rejoice their suspicions have been confirmed while the Right will feel relieved Mr Key will bat the accusations off today.

Coincidentally, Mr Key will do his only media stand-up today in Dunedin.

He was in Dunedin the day after Nicky Hager's book Dirty Politics was released.

Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom and Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Glenn Greenwald were joined in video conference by former NSA analyst Edward Snowden and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to reveal how New Zealanders were being spied upon by the New Zealand GCSB and the United States National Security Agency.

The choice for New Zealanders will come down to who is most believable - the Prime Minister of New Zealand or Mr Snowden who now lives in Russia because he is wanted by the US Government, Mr Assange, who lives in the Embassy of Ecuador because he is wanted in Sweden to face rape charges or Mr Dotcom who is wanted in the US to face internet piracy charges.

Of all the speakers, it was Mr Snowden who was the most believable. Here was a man who had worked in Hawaii, analysing data on behalf of his former employee.

He had a convincing tale to tell about an NSA facility based in Auckland which the US spy agency used to spy on New Zealanders before passing on the information to New Zealand's spy agency.

But he failed to produce any proof other than his word, as did any of the other speakers, including Mr Dotcom's lawyer Bob Amsterdam, who talked about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.

When the conference, viewed on YouTube by more than 23,000 people at its peak, switched to Mr Assange, the mood flattened.

There was no unveiling of anything illegal, just supposition and suggestion.

The moment was ruined when Mr Dotcom gave a plug for a new encrypted video service on his Mega website.

The reaction on Twitter was harsh.

Moment of Truth (MoT) turned into Marketing Opportunity Tonight.

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