This year has been a challenging year for many reasons, not least because of the inauguration of a fascist into the US White House, the mass slaughter of people in Yemen, the persecution of people in Burma, the war in Syria, a nuclear-stand-off with North Korea, the torture of refugees in Australian gulags, and on the list goes. But there were so many positive acts of resistance and beauty along the way that we can and should celebrate 2017, too. These include:
• 16 anti-war activists went to court in Wellington to fight charges arising from the 2015 Weapons expo. Every single one of them won their case & the judge awarded $3000 compensation from the police!
• Journalists Nicky Hager & Jon Stephenson exposed war crimes committed in Afghanistan
• Climate Justice Activists & allies blockaded the Petroleum summit in New Plymouth stopping delegates from getting in and sending a message that new drilling and exploration will meet with stiff resistance.
• The Crown finally apologised to the people of Parihaka for the 1881 invasion of their lands, the rape of the women and the imprisonment of the men.
• Peace Action Hamilton was established
• Dr Selina Marsh became the first ever Pacific person to be named NZ Poet Laureate
• NZ’s boring and arrogant right-wing government was finally ousted after 9 years
• The Crown officially pardon Tūhoe prophet Rua Kenana after 100 years
• We blockaded the weapons expo in Wellington, shutting it down for a day, stopping delegates from getting inside & stopping deadly deals from happening
• NZ officially commemorated the NZ Wars for the first time
• Auckland Peace Action hosted our second Parihaka Day Peace Action Conference
• Over 60 Christian clergy united in common cause to demand Jacinda Ardern take immediate steps to bring all of the Manus Island refugees to New Zealand
• Lorde decided she was on the side of justice, not on the side of Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine, so cancelled her concert in Tel Aviv.
Auckland Peace Action will continuing our peace & justice work in 2018, and we would love to have more people involved. If think you might be interested in organising against war and injustice, please email us in the New Year: aucklandpeaceaction(at)gmail.com.
We thank you for your solidarity & support this past year & hope that you and your family have a safe and happy holiday season.
Ngā mihi mahana : warm regards
Auckland Peace Action