Manataka American Indian Council
There are three kinds of sovereign governments in the United States. Under the Constitution, the federal government is the "supreme sovereign," and federal laws can pre-empt state laws. State governments also are sovereign; they retain any powers not specifically given to the federal government under the Constitution.
The third kind of sovereignty is inherent. That means the authority to govern is not granted by another government, but by the consent of the people who are governed. Indian tribal governments, which existed long before Europeans arrived on the North American continent, have inherent sovereignty.
There are several generally accepted criteria for inherent sovereignty:
* There must be a distinct group of people, with a distinct language, a distinct religious or moral structure, and a distinct culture.
* The group must control and regulate a distinct geographic area, with commonly understood and accepted boundaries.
* The group must have its own governmental structure, formed by its own people, with typical governmental authority to create and enforce laws.
* The government must be recognized by another sovereign. For example, the United States recognizes the governments of Canada, Mexico, Great Britain, France, China, etc., as well as the governments of more than 500 Indian nations.
Centuries before the Europeans arrived in North America, Indian tribes had satisfied these criteria and dealt with each other on a government-to-government basis. By making treaties with the tribes, the European governments and later the U.S. government recognized their inherent sovereignty, which predates the federal and state governments.
Pu'uhonua Dennis K. Kanahele
PROCLAMATION OF THE RESTORATION OF THE INDEPENDENCE
OF THE SOVEREIGN NATION STATE OF HAWAI`I
January 16, 1994
Honolulu, O`ahu, Hawai`i
[Official English Version]
Today, We, the Kanaka Maoli, proclaim our Right of self-determination as a People in accordance with Article 1 (2) of the United Nations Charter, and join the World Community of States as an Independent and Sovereign Nation. We hereby reestablish our Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i, that was illegally taken from the Kanaka Maoli on January 17, 1893.
By virtue of our Right to self-determination, the Kanaka Maoli claim this Right to freely determine our political status and freely pursue our economic, social and cultural development in accordance with common Article 1 of the International Covenant on Civil, and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, claim our Right for our own ends, to freely control and dispose of our natural wealth and resources, including our lands and our waters, without prejudice to any obligations arising out of international economic cooperation, based upon the principle of mutual benefit and international law.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, claim all our Land, Natural Wealth, Resources, Minerals, and Waters, which have always resided and will always reside within the hands of the Kanaka Maoli, to be ours forever, originally under communal land tenure.
Ka Pae `Aina O Hawai`i (the Hawaiian Archipelago) comprises 132 islands, reefs and shoals, stretching 1,523 miles (2,451 kilometers) southeast to northwest across the Tropic of Cancer between 154 40' to 178 25' W longitude and 18 54' to 28 15' N latitude, consisting approximately of a total land area of 6,425 square miles (16,642 square kilometers), including 1 percent of less than six square miles of land area made up of islands off the shores of the main islands and the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, from Kure Atoll in the North to Nihoa in the South, also Palmyra Island, Midway and Wake Islands, and all Lands that have resided with the Kanaka Maoli since time immemorial. The Hawaiian Islands form an Archipelago, which extends over a vast area of the Pacific Ocean, possessing a 12 mile Territorial Sea, and the 200 mile Exclusive Economic Zone, in accordance with generally recognized Standards of International Law.
In the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i lives the Kanaka Maoli. We have resided here forever, from time immemorial. We have displaced no other people. We, the Kanaka Maoli, are the original inhabitants and occupants of these Islands. We have always been in possession of our Land and are entitled to re-establish our Independent and Sovereign Nation.
The current citizens of the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i consist of all those who are descendants of the Kanaka Maoli prior to the arrival of the first westerners in 1778, and those persons, and their descendants who have lived in Hawai`i prior to the illegal overthrow, invasion and occupation of January 17, 1893, in the area which now constitutes the Archipelago of the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i.
The Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i will establish procedures for according citizenship by means of naturalization to all people who are habitual residents of Hawai`i as of today's date.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, fully support and subscribe to all of the Rights of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights for all of the people living in our Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i, and hereby adopt these protocols on behalf of the citizens of the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i.
The Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i adheres to the generally recognized principles of International Law, including the terms of the United Nations Charter. We will apply for membership in the United Nations Organization. We will conclude other international treaties and agreements at the appropriate time. In the meantime, we call upon the foreign military occupation forces in the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i to withdraw from our Sovereign Territory immediately.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, have maintained our close relationship to the `aina (land) and its natural surroundings, through practices spiritual and wholistic in nature and in harmony with natural law. The `aina is sacred to us. It sustains us.
Prior to the first European invasion of 1778, Hawai`i was known to have an unique culture and system of government. Through customs and traditional practices, the Kupuna (Elders), were highly regarded and respected as the Keepers of Wisdom and Knowledge, in a highly organized self-sufficient and sustainable social system, based on a communal land tenure system. The Kupuna were always consulted to maintain order and ho`oponopono.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, today embody within our governmental structure traditional customs and culture of the `Aha Kuka O Na Kupuna (Council of Elders), based on mutual respect, traditional practice, and family order. Their consultation on many decisions is highly regarded as the basis of all authority and principle, as handed down through generations of teachings. The Kanaka Maoli's natural ability and practice of Natural Law, commonly known and exercised, due to our deep spiritual connection to nature, and by the use, application and practice of the Laws of Nature, then as now. We, the Kanaka Maoli, believe that all things have life, be they animate or inanimate, as everything has been derived and created from one Source, the Creator.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, respectfully continue to seek the guidance and consultation of our Kupuna, be it Spiritually, Mentally, Physically, Socially or Politically, in consultation and decisions that affect our lives, to restore and protect the customs and teachings of our culture, language and knowledge from being exploited, desecrated and driven to eventual extinction. For all these reasons, the Kupuna Council will serve as the Provisional Government of the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i, to provide measures of development, until such time when the Kanaka Maoli will convene a Constitutional Convention.
Despite the historical injustices and abuse that have documented a dark chapter in the lives of the Kanaka Maoli, so unimaginable to the conscience of humanity and to all human life as a whole, we have come to realize that in the course of these modern times, we could never depart or separate our undying love, our connection, or our sacred ties from the Spirit of this Land, Aloha `Aina, which is the heart and life of all living things, as taught and handed down from the ancient wise ones (Kupuna). We must protect our sacred `aina from such invasion and exploitation, to liberate it from alien destructive forces, and preserve and protect our Cultural Heritage for future generations, from the devastation of extinction.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, have continued to exercise, practice and occupy our lands, despite the continued subjection, domination and exploitation by the forces of the occupying foreign powers, denying us our inalienable rights to self-determination, Independence and Sovereignty. Thus have well recognized principles of International Law been violated. Thus were our national identity, land, resources, Right to Sovereignty over our Territory violated, and a peaceful people overthrown by the invasion of foreign powers, who continue to occupy, exploit and destroy our way of life.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, have united at this very historic and symbolic place, the `Iolani Palace, wherein we remember the last days and tragic moments in our history, that have affected the safety and well-being of our people, to which our beloved Kupuna and Queen Liliuokalani and her commitment to restore the rights of our people, have been stolen. Her dedicated endurance against foreign powers who committed such acts of aggression and force, threats of fear and imprisonment, knowingly in violation of numerous treaties, agreements and principles of international customs and law, has never faltered, for the Love of her people, and those who stood on truth and justice, and shall prevail here, now and forever.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, here today in flesh and in Spirit, share that same commitment. It is the duty and obligation of every Kanaka Maoli, young and old, to stand ready to restore and defend our national rights, territorial integrity and independence, without prejudice, and reject and resist unlawful acts, injustice and complicity, violence and terrorism, against our political independence, and do summarily reject such use of violence and force against the territorial integrity of other peaceful states.
If not for those who have continued the struggle for peace, justice and honor, our beloved who have passed in this life and continue standing in spirit beside us here today.
If not for those who have sacrificed their families and lives, who have desired to go to prison rather than be forced to adhere to unjust principles and acts, and who have gone through the crossroads of temptation.
If not for those of us who have awaited this day, who have considered the facts and evidence of such acts of oppression, subjugation and fear, and the loss of their honor, dignity, pride and esteem.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, have historically been the victims of crimes against humanity and genocide, as defined by the Nuremberg Charter and Genocide Convention.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, have the duty to heal our wounds and restore our integrity, for many have given their lives for us to be here today, that all Kanaka Maoli can once again determine to protect the future destiny of our children, our children's children and their heritage.
The Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i proclaims its commitment to the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter. The Kanaka Maoli have long been recognized as a peaceful, loving Nation, choosing to live in peaceful co-existence with other peaceful Nation States, based on liberty, equality, truth and justice, and for the respect of our undying Spirit of Aloha as well as for the Inalienable Rights of Humanity.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, proclaim that despite continued interference of our rights to self-determination, Rights of Sovereignty and Right of Independence by the foreign occupying powers, we stand this day, in all honor, dignity and respect for this Sacred Land, to restore our Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, pledge that our commitment will continue, until the illegal occupation ends, the revival of the culture of our Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i has been fortified, the Aloha Spirit is once again fully restored, and the Spirit of Justice, Freedom and Liberation shall once again bring Peace on Earth for all Humanity.
We call upon our Kanaka Maoli people, and upon all Nations of the World, to unite and act this day, to declare and proclaim our Inalienable Sovereignty of the Nation State of Hawai`i, fully restored and functional, and to arise in the uniting of freedom and dignity in our homeland, which is the homeland of the Kanaka Maoli, now and forever.
Therefore, the Kupuna, in General Council Assembled, by the Authority recognized and vested in the Aha Kuka O Ka Ohana, in the name of the Kanaka Maoli people, to preserve and to forevermore cultivate the Heritage and Culture of the Kanaka Maoli, do solemnly publish, declare and proclaim that the Independent and Sovereign Nation of Hawai`i, is free and absolved from any other political connection with any other Nation State. Those who disregard the Principles and Rule of the Law of Nations, Justice, Integrity, Morality of Character, and Humanity, by force and acts of aggression, now illegally occupy our Territory.
We, the Kanaka Maoli, have therefore concluded that the facts are self-evident, that to continue under any colonial regime would cause thedestruction and extinction of our Culture and People. We affirm our commitment to the protection of our Divine Heritage. We, the Kanaka Maoli, mutually agree and pledge Our Lives, Our Fortunes and Our Sacred Honor, in the Spirit of Aloha.
Done this sixteenth day of January, nineteen hundred and ninety-four.
Francis A. Boyle, Legal Adviser to the Nation of Hawaii
504 E. Pennsylvania Ave.
Champaign, IL 61820 USA
Dennis "Bumpy" Kanahele is Native Hawaiian, the leader of the Ohana Council, and a Commissioner of the Hawaiian Sovereignty Advisory Commission (HSAC) for the State of Hawaii, and was elected Head of State of the Nation of Hawaii in 1993.
Francis A. Boyle is a Professor of Law, and Attorney at Law. He is a Professor of Law at the University of Illinois College of Law at Champaign. His area of expertise is in international law. He teachs courses in international law at the College of Law at Champaign. He is also an Attorney-at-Law in good standing before the Bars of the Supreme Judicial Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the United States Supreme Court, as well as a variety of United States Federal Courts. I have also practiced law before the International Court of Justice in The Hague, the so-called World Court of the United Nations System. He was appointed Legal Adviser to the Nation of Hawaii in 1993.
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