Peace group calls for radical transformation on Anzac weekend


Peace Action Wellington is hosting an Anzac-weekend peace event called The Climate of War: white supremacy, climate justice and militarism that challenges the meaning and purpose of Anzac Day.

The free, public event will be held on Saturday, 24 April from 1-5pm at the Wellington Central Baptist Church at 46 Boulcott Street.

“This event is about making the links between the current climate crisis, war and structural racism,” said Peace Action Wellington member Valerie Morse.

“We are told that Anzac Day is about remembrance, and on the face of it we remember that people died and suffered. But New Zealand has not yet engaged in real, ethical remembering of the past. In terms of World War 1, that would require the government to acknowledge that it was a racist war to strengthen imperialist control over much of the world’s oil resources, where millions of people died pointlessly, and which set the stage for the slaughter of 80 million people in World War Two.”

“Ethical remembering requires that we learn from our history to create a different future. World War One is not detached from contemporary world affairs. It was a profoundly important time that secured much of the oil of the Middle East, including in Iraq and Iran, into the hands of the British Empire with the help of New Zealand troops.”

An impressive line-up of speakers will explore the effects of this history and connections to the climate crisis from diverse lenses - from the impacts for tangata whenua and the peoples of Moana-nui-a-Kiwa/the Pacific, to the stories of refugees and migrants.

On Saturday, we have a line up of speakers that includes:
- Te Ao Pritchard (Pacific Panthers) and Nate Rew (Te Ara Whatu): Tangata Whenua and Indigenous perspectives on Climate Justice and War
- Pacific Climate Warriors workshop: Retelling Pasifika stories and claiming Pasifika agency
- Nadia Abu-Shanab (Palestinian, teacher and unionist) and Byron Clark (researcher): The uses of history and ethical remembering for a transformative future
- Gayaal Iddamalgoda (Migrant and Refugee Rights Campaigner, Unionist) and Adriana Che Ismail (Secretary at VicMuslims Club and Campaigns Manager for the Wellington Community Justice Project's Asylum Seeker Equality Project) - Disrupting the narrative: open borders, migrant stories of war, and challenging islamophobia

“We invite the public to engage in this critical space for learning and unpacking the past in order that we can build a radically different and just future.”


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