If we were like Tuhoe, we’d still be blaming today’s Germans for Hitler

Tuhoe need to get over themselves, crying a river of tears over something that happened 100 years ago.

One-hundred years ago this weekend, police stormed a Tuhoe settlement to arrest a man known as a Maori prophet.

The arrest of Rua Kenana and the fatal shooting of his son was a blight on relations between Tuhoe and the Crown.

A century on, the incident is not forgotten, and nor is the message of peace he preached.

Sodden skies on a sombre day as Tuhoe recreated a dark moment in its history — this weekend marks a century since police stormed the hills arresting Mr Kenana and shooting his son and another man dead.

“It’s a huge event for them because the stigma that was associated with that day, and also Rua Kenana, the charges laid against his followers, stay with those people right through to now,” says Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell.  

The raid by 70 armed police affected Tuhoe for decades, as told in the movie Rain of the Children.

His arrest was later ruled illegal, but not before Mr Kenana was sent to jail and the village he built was left to ruin.

A century on, and strong emotions remain.

“The pain that the people have carried all these years,” says Lenny Te Kaawa from Ngai Tuhoe.

Mr Kenana claimed to be the successor of the rebel Te Kooti — a spiritual leader and brutal warrior. But while Te Kooti was a fighter, Mr Kenana was a pacifist.

He built a village and a movement at Maungapohatu, with its own bank, courthouse and parliament, but that independence caught the Government’s eye.

“The only problem was the Crown actually saw him as a threat because they could see he was managing things like how they would’ve, and even better,” says Kirituia Tumarae Ngai Tuhoe.

While the prophet is long gone, the movement he created lives on among Tuhoe at Maungapohatu.

“The legacy is a staunch belief in the whole notion of peace and living together in harmony,” says Mr Flavell.

The Media party just enables them.

It’s pathetic really. Carrying on 100 years later.

Good grief.


–  Newshub


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  • Raibert

    They can celebrate whatever they want as long as the taxpayer isn’t paying for it!

  • Wheninrome

    World War II was far more recent.
    There is a level of maturity in forgiveness. Forgiving does not equate to forgetting.
    We should remember our dead, no matter when, where or how it happens, in some cases to try and ensure it doesn’t happen again.
    Carrying a long term grudge religious, historic or otherwise doesn’t get us anywhere, look at Turkey, Syria and Isil a perfect example

  • Day Day

    I’d like to say the Tuhoe country is awe inspiring & beautiful. Heaven on Earth, if you ever get the chance to travel through there. But in my view life has never been easy out there.

  • rua kenana

    mmm … very interesting.
    As Jesus noted:
    “A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house.” King James Bible, Matthew 13:57

  • manuka416

    Why shouldn’t they remember travesties? Enlarging the Hitler comparison, should the Jews forget their treatment at the hands of the Nazis? Of course, what happened to Tuhoe is incomparable to the holocaust – but that doesn’t make of it no historical significance to the people. Rather than mock Tuhoe for their remembrance, I’d rather acknowledge them for their perseverance and reconciliation with the Crown.

    • Usaywot

      Maori fought each other for hundreds of years before europeans arrived. Often they ate their enemies and stole their lands but you don’t see tribes banging on against other tribes do you? Is that because they know there will be no financial reward if they do?

      • manuka416

        The greater nation is ignorant to inter-tribal disputes and grievances, brown-on-brown issues are nothing to care about. And, if you’re going to chase down a thief… pick the one with something in the purse.

    • Hobbes

      Their reconciliation with the Crown will last about 2 days after the money runs out if that.

  • Oh Please

    As usual there is racism involved. Whiteys have to forgive. The Germans shot at my grandfather and killed my great great grandfather – but I have to forgive and forget. My homeland was invaded by the Norwegians, the French, the Danes, and Uncle Tom Cobbly – any chance of getting my land back, or getting compensation? Sorry matey, you’re not brown enough. The only brownies who got nothing are the Moriori – it seems their invasion and land-loss was okay.
    Once again PC is shorthand for ‘one-eyed racism’.

    • manuka416

      Soldiers die in wars. War criminals were prosecuted and hung. Territories seized in war were returned, with the offenders own territories reduced. Financial compensation extracted from the aggressors was enormous, stifling economies for decades (and setting the path for WWII). Using war and conquest as a basis for your “poor me” racist rant just doesn’t fit.

      • Oh Please

        1) There is no ‘poor me’ in my statement. 2) There is no racism either – but there is in the existing state of affairs. The racists are generally the ones who shout racist loudest.

        • manuka416

          You make no sense, but I’ll respond anyway. Your rant was about “racism” and “whiteys” and “brownies” and more “racism.” You’ve got something brown stuck in your eye, poor fella. And that last line, “racists are generally the ones who shout racist loudest.” Serious? I think you’re applying the “the one who smelled it dealt it” rule in the wrong context.

          • Oh Please

            It’s only a rant if you disagree with it. Just because it mentions racism doesn’t make it racist – in fact the reason you are racist and I am not is that I believe all races should be treated the same – irrespective. You do not, you want special treatment for different races which makes you a racist, sir. But you just carry on playing the race card, it has been so overplayed now that those not hard of thinking can see right through it.

          • manuka416

            It’s good that you believe all races should be treated the same. That puts you in the camp of people who would favour the right of Maori to seek compensatory redress from the Crown for wrongs committed, and would favour bilingual place names (e.g. Aotearoa / New Zealand), and would favour Te Reo being taught in schools. After all, these are examples of Maori having the same privilege as Pakeha.

  • johcar

    Maybe while Winston’s building all the bridges in Northland, he could spare one for the Tuhoe so they can get over themselves….

    • rua kenana

      Winston doesn’t hold the purse-strings. Steve Joyce does, and it was he who promised the bridges. Probably donated too much to corporate welfare and departmental extravagance to have any left over for such banalities as keeping promises.

      • OneTrack

        Northland voted against the bridges. No point the government wasting public money on infrastructure the local don’t want. Is there?

  • cows4me

    “The pain the people have carried all these years” yes of course Lenny, poor hard done by Tuhoe you just know butter wouldn’t melt in their mouths. May I suggest Lenny this is a very selective pain because we all know Tuhoe are the model for high morals and justice. And of course the liberal apologists will be falling over themselves drunk with liberal guilt. I doubt any party here can throw the first stone, Maori or Pakeha, just let it go.

    • I fully understand Tuhoe in this one, I still carry the pain of the speeding ticket my Father was given 3 years before I was born.

      • Wheninrome

        So it wasn’t on the way to the hospital pending your arrival.

        • That’s a whole different story, still getting over the culturally insensitive nurses there!

  • Rob Knox

    What happened in 1916 has to be seen in the context of the time. NZ was in the middle of WW1 and the govt did not want insurrection within the country. This was just over 40 years after Te Kooti stopped his barbarous raiding in and around Poverty Bay so there were people alive then, both Maori and Pakeha, who would have known Te Kooti, his followers and the people murdered by both sides. The local militia and kupapa killed hundreds of Tuhoe in about 1869-70 after they were taken prisoner by tossing them off cliffs. This is quite clear in modern history texts about Te Kooti but no action was taken by the Govt of the day. The shootings at Kenana’s village were initiated by one of Kenana’s followers shooting at Police. Historic accounts show two Maori were killed and at least one Police Constable was severely wounded. Photos taken by reporters at the scene show Police being helped away after being wounded. The govt of the day were seriously concerned about a resurgence of armed rebellion within Tuhoe, rightly or wrongly.

  • Valid Point

    Have to disagree with WO on this one. How is Tuhoe rcognising a defining event for their tribe any different than NZ and Australia recognising Gallipoli? The raid on Tuhoe in 1916 was a terrible event and shouldn’t be ignored by history.

    • OneTrack

      Are you suggesting New Zealand should hold a grudge against Turkey and be suing for compensation? Gallipoli is now an example of both sides accepting bygones will be bygones and we now live in the 21st century, with our own real problems to deal with. Maori should harden up, look at the year on the calendar, build a bridge and get over it.

  • taxpayer

    Good grief indeed.
    What sort of people carry grudges from generation to generation over and over for more than 100 years.
    If vindictiveness were to be made an Olympic sport we have our gold medal winners right here.
    Of course we all know what it comes down to is bleat long enough and loud enough and more free money may be on it’s way.
    Pathetic for sure.

  • Andy

    My great great uncle’s brother was Ned Kelly. Perhaps I should demand redress from the Victorian government?