Mililani Trask's puts it clearly, for 21 years the settler govts of OZ, NZ, Canada, & the US have blocked (and will continue to block) the passage of the DRIP (Declaration on the rights of Indigenous Peoples), things such as these and treaties are meaningless in the face of economic and "security arrangements, which do nothing more than open up our region for the outflow of capital, ( land, people, natural resources), evolutionary processes have run their course and the time for asserting our rights/Mana Motuhake has come.
|"Treaty settlement policy is driven by the same slash and burn market logic as the notorious reform of Article 27 of Mexico's constitution |
by President Salinas in preparation for the NAFTA. Effectively gutting the ejido system of communal landholdings, this privatised lands on which mainly indigenous peasants depend for subsistence farming, opening the way for foreign ownership, and was a major grievance for the 1994 Zapatista uprising. Similarly, New Zealand Government policies aim to create open access to Maori lands and resources
subject to Treaty claims."
Hundreds of people from around the world recently gathered in New York for the "Indigenous Peoples' Resistance to Economic Globalization a Celebration of Victories, Rights and Cultures" teach-in put on by the International Forum on Globalization and the Tebtebba Foundation.
Thursday, November 23rd, 2006
The members of APEC in the Pacific are the two dominant powers, Australia and New Zealand, and the other member nations that participate now in the rape of the ocean marine resources of the Pacific are Canada, China, Indonesia, Japan, the United States of America. Why are we not surprised to see that leading the APEC initiatives, the governments of the United States, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand are the same four governments that for 21 years have prevented the passage of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the United Nations?
AMY GOODMAN: We turn now to Native Hawaiian attorney, Mililani Trask, who began by speaking about the US invasion of Hawaii.
MILILANI TRASK: Hawaii is the state in the union that has the greatest number of extinct species and threatened species. When Cook sailed in, there were one million kanaka maoli in the archipelago. Today, there are still one million people, but we are about 12% of those who occupy our lands.
In Hawaii, we have only two industries -- tourism, which is the structural adjustment program under globalization, structural adjustment program of the World Bank, and the other industry, militarism, the making of war. Militarism is the primary vehicle that is used by developed countries of the North to enforce globalization worldwide. Fifteen years ago as a result of some quiet and secret negotiations in Washington, Deceit [D.C.], Hawaii was identified to be the lead location in the world to host research and experiments relating to the genetic modification of life forms. A few years ago, as a result of using the Freedom of Information Act, we learned to our great dismay that the United States had approved over 4,000 open air and lab testing and experiments relating to the genetic modification of life forms. As a result of this, Hawaii now hosts the largest number of transnational corporations in the world, who are patenting and claiming ownership of the food and of the plants and resources of the world.
In this respect, Hawaii is only one small microcosm in the larger problem of the Pacific Basin. We now have independent evidence of the actual impact of globalization in the Pacific. This evidence was put together by none other than the Christian Churches of the Pacific Basin. A few years ago, the Christian Churches in the Pacific got together -- they are the World Council of Churches of the Pacific -- and they conducted an investigation and held a conference on the impact of globalization in the Pacific. Their documentation of the impact is published in a report called “Island of Hope.”
The report found the following, that the major impacts of globalization in the Pacific were, number one, rapid increase in extreme poverty; and number two, destabilization of governments. After decades of failed economic development and stagnant private investment, we see now the rapid rise of extreme poverty in the Pacific. 40% of the peoples of Vanuatu live in poverty. 48% in Samoa. Over 50% in Kiribati. “The Island of Hope” documented that the primary cause of poverty in the Pacific relates to globalization, and that this rise in poverty is interlinked with the adoption by national governments of liberal policies promoting investment and competition, and this has operated to the detriment of social services, including health, education, housing, and social welfare.
With regards to the impact on the political stability of Pacific Basin nations, the report found that within the last fifteen years, the Pacific region has attracted increasing international attention and is now on the world map of political and economic trouble spots. When we look at the destabilization and the constitutional crisis in Fiji, where we have now had three coup d'etats, in the Solomon Islands, we see that the governments of the Pacific are falling apart because of the onslaught of transnational corporations and globalization.
I am sad to say that for the first time in the history of the Pacific, we now see the destabilization of the Kingdom of Tonga. Tonga was the only, the only, Pacific nation that was not taken over by foreigners during the time of colonization. But yesterday, as a result of the legislature concluding its deliberation without addressing the problem of economic disparity caused by globalization, riots broke out in Tonga. Two were killed yesterday, thirteen more today.
The report demonstrates that these threats to international security have intensified as the consequence of the mixed impact of reform policies based on economic liberalization. And these impacts are, number one, increasing economic disparity; number two, increased competition for control of the governments of the Pacific and of government public funding; and number three, reduced capacity for the governments to effectively address the social problems of their citizens.
With regards to ecological impact, the report found that the Pacific region has more rare and endangered threatened species per capita than anywhere else in the world. The marine environment, the Pacific comprises an enormous and largely unexplored resource. In the Pacific, we have the most extensive and diverse reefs that remain in the world, the largest tuna fishery, the deepest ocean trenches, and the healthiest remaining populations of many species that are now globally threatened, including the kohola, the whales, the honu, the turtles, and the dugong and saltwater crocs. The report of the church has verified that in the Pacific high islands, we still support large areas of intact rain forest, and we are the home of many unique species and communities of plants and life forms that are found nowhere else in the world.
The report documented that the reason for the ecological threat and the decline in the biodiversity of the Pacific, that this is traceable to extensive exploitation, rather than sustainable management, of the Pacific's natural resources. The report documented that the exploitation of the Pacific natural resources is being undertaken by transnational corporations from outside the region.
With regards to the economic impact, the report found the following: a heavy emphasis on foreign investment as the engine of growth only encourages greater foreign control of island economies and has created increased dependency by Pacific peoples on externally devised economic initiatives, rather than promoting and supporting local initiatives.
With regards to the impact on economic development, the report now verifies that this is what has resulted in increased foreign control of the indigenous territories of the Pacific and the decline of the Pacific Island nation states.
How does this happen? It happens because there’s a globalized structure, such as what has been imposed on the Pacific region by the two dominantly white powers in the region, and that is New Zealand and Australia. These results come from what is known as the Pacific Plan for Trade Liberalization, but there are also other global initiatives moving in the Pacific that have had a negative and detrimental impact. Here, I refer to the APEC plan of 2004, which is called the APEC Integrated Oceans Management Plan. This proposal was developed by the APEC nations for the purpose of bringing states together in the Pacific so that they could have a collective and integrated approach to marine resource management, and so that they could all share equally in the benefit of this plan.
The problem is that no indigenous nation of the Pacific is allowed to be a member of APEC. Samoa, Kiribati, Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu, French-occupied Polynesia, they are not members of the APEC. The members of APEC in the Pacific are the two dominant powers, Australia and New Zealand, and the other member nations that participate now in the rape of the ocean marine resources of the Pacific are Canada, China, Indonesia, Japan, the United States of America. Why are we not surprised to see that leading the APEC initiatives, the governments of the United States, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand are the same four governments that for 21 years have prevented the passage of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the United Nations?
AMY GOODMAN: Native Hawaiian attorney, Mililani Trask, speaking at a forum sponsored by the International Forum on Globalization.
Australia and NZ remained unrepentant for their brutal suppression of indigenous independence movements in the Pacific. They rationalised such behaviour as enhancing the welfare of the Islands and the human development of their people just as they justified similar behaviour towards indigenous peoples in their own countries.
Big Brothers Behaving Badly: The Implications for the Pacific Islands
of the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations
Prof. Jane Kelsey - commissioned by the Pacific Network on
Globalisation- interim report - April 2004
The Implications for the Pacific Islands of the Pacific Agreement on
Closer Economic Relations by Prof. Jane Kelsey - commissioned by the
Pacific Network on Globalisation - interim report - April 2004