Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

EMPTY GARDEN - Wellington's National War Memorial Park


EMPTY GARDEN - Wellington's National War Memorial Park

by Don Franks

The government is set to mark the 2015 Centenary of the First World War with a flash new $80 million dollar construction.
Prime Minister John Key announced the project at the National War Memorial today, alongside the Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Veterans’ Affairs Minister and Green Wellington Mayor, Celia Wade-Brown. The previous Labour government originally planned the park and local Labour mp Grant Robertson has been agitating for its early completion.

The new National War Memorial Park will combine existing memorial precincts, including the Hall of Memories, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the National Carillion.

These are currently divided by State Highway 1 and will be brought together in the park by undergrounding the state highway on Buckle Street between Tory and Taranaki Streets in Wellington.

The Labour/National park extension is based on an elaborate political lie.

John Key claims that the initiative “...will be an enduring reminder to our children and their children, so they can better understand our past.”

In military terms, "Our past" is one of shooting Maori to steal their land, supporting the armed struggle of British and American capitalism to dominate the globe, and, more recently supporting the advance of New Zealand capitalist interests in the Pacific.

Indelible facts, none of which, I venture, will be cut in stone anywhere near John and Grant's new war park.

Instead, the place will sit as an enduring reminder of the Tennysonian ruling class injunction:

"Theirs not to make reply, Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die"

An distant echo from the Crimean war, but rulers demands for our unthinking political obedience remain as strong today.

Politically, the new park will serve as a platform to legitimise and launch future capitalist wars in which young workers will die.

War propaganda purposes aside, Wellington doesn't need another park. Public parks in the capital are plentiful and well maintained.

If $80 million really is rolling around needing to be spent on something, there are other options.

For example, in March this year, the Wellington City council estimated 200 homeless people in Wellington city, a hundred up from last year.

Aro Valley Community Council member Barry Thomas reported " a dramatic increase in people sleeping tin parks and garages, arriving at the community centre " poor, hungry, dirty, tired, without a place to sleep".

This increase is put down to continuing high unemployment and low wages.

If the powers that be have $80 million to toss about they could build and staff a pretty good functioning hostel for the homeless victims of capitalism.

Ot, for that matter, the $80 million could be taken, in cash notes, up to the top of Mount Victoria and tossed into the wind, to be enjoyed by whoever chanced to pick them up.

Silly? No sillier than funding the perpetuation of a monstrous historical lie.

end

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 


Ian Powell: Doctors Call For Vaccine Development In New Zealand

On 10 June the Democracy Project published online an article by me on why New Zealand should seriously consider developing its own vaccine manufacturing and supply, particularly in respect of the coronavirus pandemic.. More>>



Peter Dunne: What Has Happened To Tolerance?

An unpleasant aspect of our current national character has come to light in recent times. When it comes right down to it, no matter what our pretences to the contrary, tolerance for a different point of view, or approach to things, is not a commodity in great supply at present, right across the political spectrum... More>>


Keith Rankin: Inflation Fears, Bullshit Costs, And Inappropriate Policy

It is true that New Zealand – and the rest of the world – now faces substantial inflation pressure. As the 2020s unfold, the biggest macroeconomic story – as in the 1920s after World War 1 – is likely to be about how we address these pressures... More>>




Climate Explained: Is New Zealand Losing Or Gaining Native Forests?

Apart from wetlands, land above the treeline, coastal dunes and a few other exceptions, New Zealand was once covered in forests from Cape Reinga to Bluff. So was Europe, which basically consisted of a single forest from Sicily in southern Italy to the North Cape in Norway, before human intervention... More>>




Sydney Mockdown: The Delta Variant Strikes

It is proving to be an unfolding nightmare. For a government that had been beaming with pride at their COVID contract tracing for months, insisting that people could live, consume and move about with freedom as health professionals wrapped themselves round the virus, the tune has changed... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Why The J&J Vaccine Isn’t An Ideal Back-up Option, And Haiti

The news that Medsafe has given approval to Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine means the government is finally putting a backup plan in place, after the series of close shaves it has been experiencing of late in getting its deliveries of the Pfizer vaccine... More>>