Nation Within: The History of the American Occupation of Hawai'i

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Koa Books, 2009 - History - 345 pages
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The question, How did the distant island kingdom of Hawaii become part of the United States? has been buried by a combination of American mythology and American denial. But that question has taken on new urgency in context of Native Hawaiian demands for a restoration of self-government. The takeover of this independent nation of long standing was America's first confusing venture into overseas imperialism. As such, it was the antecedent to the colonization of the Philippines, the overthrow of numerous governments of weak but friendly nations and, currently, the occupation of Iraq. In 1893, only two percent of the kingdom of Hawaii's population was of American descent, but the colonizers in Hawaii and the architects of American expansion in Washington were importantly connected by common origins an intertwining of missionaries, financiers, sugar growers and politicians. Nation Within describes how, in the wake of the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893, an interim government of five years duration was established that borrowed heavily from the Jim Crow American south. In 1895, Hawaiians attempted a counterrevolution, and two hundred Hawaiians, along with their Queen, were jailed by a martial law court. After much resistance, Americans were pulled along into the imperial proposition by Theodore Roosevelt (then assistant secretary of the Navy) and the American philosopher of sea power, Alfred Mahan. Their multi-pronged strategy was based on controlling Latin America, building the Panama canal, and dominating the Pacific by controlling Hawaii. Did Native Hawaiians really go along with this, as has so ofte been claimed? The answer lay dormant nearly a hundred years in the Americanarchive: Native petitions vigorously protesting annexation submitted by virtually every living Hawaiian. An ad

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This is a great reference source could be considered to be a Hawaiian version of Zinns A Peoples History. Read full review

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About the author (2009)

Tom Coffman wrote for UPI and was the political bureau chief of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, then became an independent writer and producer. His most recent film, The First Battle: The Battle for Equality in Wartime Hawaii, is currently playing on PBS stations. His Arirang: The Korean American Journey and Nation Within also have circulated widely on PBS. He is the author of Catch A Wave on Hawaii politics, Nation Within, and The Island Edge of America, as well as newspaper and magazine articles. He is currently working on a film about the assassination of Benigno Aquino.

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