Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Northern Wars anniversary offers lesson for today

Thursday 08 March 2018

For Immediate Release

Northern Wars anniversary offers lesson for today

In the lead-up to the annual commemoration of the 1845 wars fought in Northland, Ngapuhi kaumatua, David Rankin, has spoken about their significance to the country. Rankin’s ancestors fought on both sides of the war. Hone Heke provoked the British into fighting, while Tamati Waka Nene supplied troops to the British to fight Heke.

“Heke’s motives have always been at the centre of the war,” Rankin points out. “He wanted to overcome the power of his more senior relatives, and wanted to use his considerable diplomatic skills to extend his influence over everyone in the region…and for a few months in 1845, he succeeded in that.”

Although known mainly for chopping down the flagpole in Russell and taking on the Crown in a series of battles, Heke is regarded by his hapu primarily for his diplomatic skills. “He made peace with his enemy, Kawiti, in order to build a bigger alliance, he worked with the missionaries so he could maintain communication with the Governor, and even at the height of the war, Heke was engaged in correspondence with British officials.”

And as final evidence of Heke’s diplomatic genius, Rankin points out that Heke was the only person in the entire British Empire in the nineteenth century who waged war again the Crown and was then let off with no punishment whatsoever.

“There’s a lesson in this for Ngapuhi today,” says Rankin. “There are times when enough is enough. You stop fighting the Crown and accept what’s on offer so that the people can live in peace and prosperity.”


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis Review: A Bigger Splash - Te Papa Celebrates Twenty Years

Considering the available resources, this is a decidedly hit-and-miss affair, mainly due to some highly questionable curatorial decisions. In their overweening wish to "push boundaries," Charlotte Davy and Megan Tamati-Quennell have made a number of serious miscalculations by ignoring a basic rule - keep it simple. More>>

Howard Davis Review: Smelling the Merchandise - The Death of Stalin

Having satirised British democracy with such devastating effect, Armando Iannucci has now turned his lens on the dangers inherent in Soviet authoritarianism. Every gag is girdled with fear and the bleak humour is so pitch black it could only have been pumped from deep underground. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Creole Stylings of Cécile McLorin Salvant

"You only get a singer like this once in a generation or two," commented Wynton Marsalis, who has repeatedly hired her to front his jazz orchestra and mounted a 25 foot high portrait of her on the exterior of Lincoln Center. “She radiates authority. She has poise, elegance, soul, humour, sensuality, power, virtuosity, range, insight, intelligence, depth, and grace.” More>>

Max Rashbrooke Review: The King's Singers and Voices New Zealand

To be good at one thing is impressive; to be so versatile across a range of genres is truly exceptional. The latest incarnation of this six-strong male singing group includes Kiwi Christopher Bruerton, and it was a delight to hear him sing the solo on the achingly beautiful My Love Is like a Red, Red Rose. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland