Blog post from 19 April 2011
The newly launched film “Operation 8: Deep in the Forest” may anger you.
It is the documentary movie of the infamous Tuhoe raids of 2007. Ruātoki whānau and the other activists accused of terrorism, are given an opportunity to tell their stories. Their dignified recollections alone will infuriate any social justice ngākau. If you heart is that way inclined then, prepare for it to be stung.
To further enlighten you, the movie features an impressive list of specialist commentators including none other than ‘hard man’ ex-cop Ross Meurant. Meurant outlines the paranoia which lends itself to the blatant bias underlying undercover police operations. He connects how fundamental this is to what happened to Tuhoe. Go Ross!
The commentary of the other specialists including leading lawyers, academics, journalists and activists builds a picture of a messy police case from the get go. There were many gasps of horror and outrage at the Auckland premiere showing in April. Not to mention whips of laughter outbreak at how ridiculous the case is – you have to be there for that.
The film intelligently places the raids in the context of global social and political power. Throughout history there have always been attempts by authorities and those in power to frame and tame political dissent as something far more sinister. The Tūhoe people and associated activists have been exploited to allow the law to flex its muscley arm. Go see the muscle-bound pose for yourself and get the word out about this movie as it needs and deserves our collective support.
From here though, we must continue the solidarity for the accused. They face a Judge only trial, a further injustice in this whole saga, in Auckland starting end May 2011. They will need things like accommodation, food, childcare and cash as they and their whānau face weeks and weeks of court hearings away from their homes.
Please see the October 15 Solidarity website http://www.october15thsolidarity.info/en/about where these is a list of suggestions for how to give your tautoko. If you can offer any assistance you can also email them directly on firstname.lastname@example.org
And aside from that, Mana Motuhake must not let such muscle flexing intimidation interrupt its path. Make sure your sovereign call rises above the sort of terror that holds children at gunpoint.
Ngā mihi aroha ki a koutou ngā whānau o Ngāi Tūhoe. We stand with you.
Te Wharepora Hou
Contact: Marama Davidson
021 025 88302