Imperial preferences : a study of New Zealand's great power relationships from 1949 to 1963 : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in History at Massey University
This year is the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the treaty that led to the formation of the Southeast Asia Treaty Organisation or SEATO. As such, it is an opportune time to review aspects of New Zealand's membership of this organisation. This task is all the more timely, because this year has also seen the Prime Minister of New Zealand sign a Non-Aggression Pact with ASEAN in the capital of Laos. Helen Clark is following in the footsteps of her Labour predecessor Walter Nash, who defied SEATO and the US over the matter of armed intervention in Laos. This thesis examines the changing defence relationships of New Zealand with the UK and the US during the 1950s, and seeks to explain the circumstances of Nash's disagreement with our largest ally. I wish to thank the staff of the Auckland University Library and the Massey University Library and the staff of the National Archives. Thanks to John Mills of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade for his assistance and to Bruce Brown and Tom Larkin for their interviews. I also wish to convey my thanks to Adam Claasen for his guidance and to Marilyn Lewis for her proofreading. My major thanks and appreciation goes to Ester Lewis.