Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search


Cookson & Davies: NZ Post Colonial? Yeah Right

Post Colonial? Yeah Right!

Leigh Cookson & Joe Davies
Arena (Action, Research & Education Network of Aoteaora)

The orders are received. The men prepare, put their combat boots on, cover their faces and load their guns. The exits are blocked, the people are searched and terrorized and the activists are dragged away. Palestine, Iraq. Afghanistan? – not this time. It is Ruatoki on a Monday morning.

The TV images of armed police blockading a small east coast town will shock many, but we should not be surprised. The dispossession of Maori and the ongoing colonisation of Maori lands, lives and resources is a New Zealand story, a story that hasn’t ended yet, as the people of Tuhoe can tell you this week.

Maori resistance to colonisation has always been labeled extreme. In 1916, the Tuhoe settlement of Maungapohatu in the Ureweras, a pacifist, religious community, was raided by armed constabulary in the same way as Ruatoki was raided last Monday. Back then, two men were shot dead and the remainder ended up in prison, "guilty of moral resistance". “Moral resistance?” Sounds like something we should encourage!

Maungapohatu’s crime was reluctance to engage in WWI. Back then, they called it “sedition” and “treason”. Now, Maori resistance is being called ‘terrorism’.

The fear of terrorism is being used as an excuse for the criminalization of protest and dissent. Where is your outrage and defiance? Has it been dampened by the word “terrorist”? What a useful little device if you’re a government wanting to repress and suppress dissent!

Tame Iti is not a terrorist. He has simply come to be the symbol - at least for the Police - of the Maori protest movement. Whether he had guns is not important. The fact that the Police equate him with Maori resistance is.

If you think this has nothing to do with you, think again. When the NZ State wants to get ugly, it tends to practice on Maori targets first. But it’s generally not long before it turns on other communities. Some of us remember that the tactics used against protesters during the 1981 Springbok Tour were first perfected against Maori occupiers of Bastion Point.

Will the big stick of the Terrorism Suppression Act and the amendments to it that the Crown is trying to push through Parliament right now (funny coincidence that, eh?) be used in future against you? I bet the organic gardeners and Save Happy Valley Coalition never thought so.

Colonizer states like NZ need to create a climate of fear to maintain their power. Acts like the TSA fill the bill very well. If we let them get away with hounding and demonizing Tame Iti and the Maori resistance movement, who will be next?

If you think New Zealand is a post colonial state, think again


© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Werewolf: ‘Disruption’ Is For Losers

Disruption – anarchic, dynamic, table-tipping, mould-breaking, consensus-shattering disruption – has become part of every corporate bout of auto-hype to the faddish point where the term has lost any useful meaning it might once have had. More>>


Werewolf: Coney Island (And The Trumps), Baby

Like much of that part of the coast, and given the storm surges of Hurricane Sandy, Coney Island should be occupied only by clumps of grass and seabirds. Instead there are 60,000 people in multi-storey apartment buildings living among the faded remnants of a once-spectacular fantasyland.. More>>


Gordon Campbell:
On Corbyn, Trump And Outsider Politics

Jeremy Corbyn elevated to the leadership of Britain’s Labour Party! Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders on the rise in the US… On both sides of the Atlantic, these are dark days for the political Establishment. More>>


Operation Chrysalis: A New Beginning For Scoop

On December 19th 2014 the Scoop Team set out on a project called "Operation Chrysalis". We decided to turn Scoop's 16 year old online news publishing business into a new kind of news business, one connected directly to its readers, owned by a not-for-profit and based on a new business model. More>>


Keith Rankin: The Economy - What's It For?

I re-watched the Q+A 'immigration debate' screenedon 23 August. In light of recent events, the discussion already seems very dated. The underlying assumptions were that the economy is a system in which production growth is pretty much the sole objective, and that migration policy must serve this end of output maximisation... More>>

Until Dawn: Pick Your Own Horrible Adventure

Suppermassive Games’ Until Dawn sees a group of dumb sexy teenagers take a trip to a spooky mansion atop a mountain. It is, obviously, a horror game. However, the game is so ridiculous it turns out to be more of a comedy. Until Dawn begins with ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news