Jus­tice de­nied

The Northland Age - - Opinion -

We learn that a Taranaki tribe, fight­ing to keep pos­ses­sion of Mo­ri­ori land, is call­ing its vic­tims “con­quered and sub­ju­gated,” as well it might. Nev­er­the­less, it does no harm to look at the process by which this oc­curred.

It is care­fully re­lated by the late Michael King in Mo­ri­ori: A peo­ple redis­cov­ered, (Vik­ing, 1989) and may be de­scribed ac­cu­rately as one of the most ex­treme ex­am­ples of geno­cide in recorded his­tory.

Rit­ual can­ni­bal­ism on an over­whelm­ing scale with bru­tal en­slave­ment of the few sur­vivors make it a holo­caust on a level with any­thing per­pe­trated by Nazi Ger­many. That it was per­pe­trated on a peo­ple who truly prac­tised peace and paci­fism make its mock­ery by sub­se­quent Taranaki tribes­men in their nasty cult at Par­i­haka into what must be one of the bit­ter­est ironies of all times.

As King re­ports (p.66): “For the Maori par­tic­i­pants ... this ... was sim­ply tikanga . ... As Rakatau noted with some sat­is­fac­tion in the Na­tive Land Court in 1879,

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