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Ke Aupuni Update from Leon Siu – Mauna Kea, Aloha movie, UN briefings

Ke Aupuni Update
June 9, 2015

Keeping in touch and updated on activities regarding the restoration of Ke Aupuni o Hawaii, the Hawaiian Kingdom. Ua Mau Ke Ea O Ka Aina I Ka Pono.

Aloha kakou. 
The past 3 weeks back in the islands has been amazing. The advances made in Geneva and New York are more than matched here at home by the growing enthusiasm for restoring our nation. The vision for a Free Hawaii based on the principles of Kapu Aloha is coming more clearly into focus.
Ku Kia’i Mauna
Mahalo for those protecting Mauna a Wakea. Your Ku’e and living examples of Aloha are breaking through many barriers, especially those among our own people. Your Ku’e on all fronts is exposing—big time—the games being played by the different “players” (the state, the university, the foreign countries, the corporations, the scientific institutions). Even when they talk aloha ‘aina, their true motive? Money. OHA it turns out just wanted a cut of the action.
Aloha Movie
If you get a chance, go see the movie, “Aloha” (starring Bradley Cooper and Emma Stone). It has some good scenes that should pique people’s interest in our movement. Bumpy does a great job. Don’t worry about them calling Bumpy “king.” What the movie does in a very matter-of-fact way, is confront people with a different reality about Hawaii…that Hawaii is still a sovereign nation and that we are a people working to restore our nation. I’m not concerned about the title. The term “Aloha” has endured much greater abuse than this and has still emerged pure and kapu in the minds and hearts of people all over the world.
Briefings on recent UN breakthrough
I will be giving two talks that are open to the public to attend: 1) on Kauai Thursday, June 11 and 2) on Oahu, June 12. The talks will be on recent gains made at the international level toward asserting the sovereignty of our nation. (see attached flyers)
Next week, I will be headed for New York and Geneva again to continue lobbying countries and building support for Hawaiian independence.
A hui hou,
Malama pono,
€ Leon Anahola flyer.pdfPacific Peace Forum Leon Siu - 12 June 2015.pdf

La Ho’iho’i Ea (Hawaiian Restoration Day) 2015


Bumpy’s perspective on Aloha movie: Crowe afforded megaphone platform to the Hawaiian rights movement

This BuzzFeed News story by Michelle Broder Van Dyke on the movie ‘Aloha’ is an absolute must read to understand Bumpy’s perspective on the movie ‘Aloha’ and Cameron Crowe’s relation with Bumpy and the village of Puuhonua o Waimanalo.

While controversy over the film’s title and racial aspects of casting have overshadowed other aspects of the movie, Bumpy notes the “megaphone platform Crowe had afforded the Hawaiian rights movement.”

Crowe gave Kanahele room within the script to mention the overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom in 1893.

“My time with Bumpy made me want to reference his struggle,” Crowe said in his email.

In Aloha, Kanahele wears his own shirt, which reads “Hawaiian by birth” on the front, and “American by force” on the back.

For Kanahele, the shirt means that to avoid violence, Hawaiians have to accept — to an extent — the past: “We are forced to do the things we don’t want to do for the sake of peace.”

That said, he’s proud of Aloha, “because we can say we are under military occupation — and that’s the truth.”

In the midst of seeking some entertainment and thinking whatever else they think about the movie, millions of people will hear these truths about Hawai‘i, thanks to Bumpy and Cameron.

Hawaii County Council Supports La Ho’i Ho’i Ea

HILO, Hawaii – The Hawaii County Council Committee on Governmental Relations and Economic Development took up a rare discussion on Hawaiian sovereignty in Hilo on Tuesday. Puna Councilman Danny Paleka introduced a resolution requesting the Hawaii state legislature designate July 31st as Lā Ho‘iho‘i Ea, recognizing the day independence was restored to the Kingdom of Hawai‘i in 1843 following a taking by the British Royal Navy.

From the “whereas” section of Resolution 185-15:

WHEREAS, La Ho‘iho‘i Ea translates to Restoration Day, which marks the day that independence was restored to the Hawaiian Kingdom on July 31, 1843, after being seized and forcefully taken by Lord George Paulet, a captain of the British Royal Navy’s HMS Carysfort; and

WHEREAS, July 31 commemorates the day that Admiral Richard Darton Thomas of the British Royal Navy ordered the Union Jack (Union Flag) to be removed and replaced with the Hawaiian flag, ending over five months of unauthorized military occupation; and

WHEREAS, the County of Hawai‘i recognizes that there is a need to honor, support, and cherish this significant day in Hawai‘i’s history; and

WHEREAS, Chapter 8, Holidays, of the Hawai‘i Revised Statutes designates certain days for the purpose of celebration, honor, remembrance, public education, and awareness; and

WHEREAS, July 31 should be known and designated as “La Ho‘iho‘i Ea” in recognition of the day independence was restored to the Kingdom of Hawai‘i, provided this day is not and shall not be construed to be a State holiday; now, therefore,

The measure drew lots of testimony from subjects of the Hawaiian Kingdom. The discussion also hit home for some councilmembers who have deep roots on the island.

The entire council voted to pass the resolution, which will go to the full council for a vote in the next few weeks.

Public Testimony:

Council Discussion:

Controversial Aloha co-stars Hawaiian independence leader

[Note: I know Ed Rampell from back in the Ohana Council days, and with his knowledge of Hawaii film history (having written multiple books on the subject, as noted in the mini-bio at the bottom) and being familiar with Hawaiian independence movement for almost three decades, he is uniquely suited to offer a meaningful review of theme ‘Aloha’ related specifically to the role Bumpy and the movement plays in the movie. Here’s his review…]

Controversial Aloha co-stars Hawaiian independence leader

By Ed Rampell

People’s World

Note: This piece contains plot spoilers.

A lynch mob is attacking writer/director Cameron Crowe’s new movie Aloha, which opened May 29. The 2014 leaking of confidential messages after Sony Pictures Entertainment executives’ email accounts were hacked (allegedly by North Koreans angered by The Interview) revealed critical comments of Aloha by anxious execs. The Media Action Network for Asian Americans observed that Aloha‘s cast is too white for a movie shot in Hawaii, where Caucasians are a minority. The 50th state’s film commissioner complained Aloha‘s title misappropriated the spiritual meaning of that word, which translates as “love,” “hello” and “farewell.” Even panelists on Fox News’ “The Five” – a program specializing in aggressive imbecility- debated Aloha.

Introducing a May 26 advance screening at a Los Angeles theater, Crowe seemed to dismiss his detractors, pithily saying, “Lots has been heard from people who have never seen the movie.” In any case, the most controversial thing about Aloha may be Crowe’s casting of Hawaiian independence leader Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele. Despite the typical Hollywood disclaimer during the closing credits about the motion picture’s characters being fictitious, Kanahele is very much a real person and the non-actor plays an onscreen version of himself bearing the same name.

Continue reading Controversial Aloha co-stars Hawaiian independence leader

‘Aloha’ viewers “learn more about the Hawaiian independence movement than they could possibly have anticipated”

Chad Blair has a ranging review of  ‘Aloha’ movie in Civil Beat, which includes this:

In another scene, Hawaiian sovereigntist Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele — who plays Hawaiian sovereigntist Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele — is looking up at the sky from his Waimanalo compound during a downpour.


Bumpy is actually one of the best things about “Aloha.” He has a natural screen presence, and he wears a black T-shirt that reads “Hawaiian by Birth” on the front and “American by Force” on the back.

That’s another worthwhile thing about “Aloha.” While it never goes too deep, those who do venture to see the film will learn more about the Hawaiian independence movement than they could possibly have anticipated. I wonder what the Hawaii Tourism Authority might have to say about all those upside-down Hawaiian state flags in the film.

Crowe also deserves kudos for trying to at least illustrate Hawaii’s critical role in the military-industrial complex, one that extends beyond our atmosphere. Oahu is one of the most militarized places on Earth — a “footprint in the Pacific,” as is noted in the film — with bases and other facilities on some of the most prime, beautiful real estate. The scenes shot on the Air Force base at Hickam capture some of that.

(By the way, those are upside down Hawaiian Kingdom flags.)

Hawaiian realities reflected in a major motion picture

There are tons of reviews out there for the movie ‘Aloha.’ Whatever else critics may object to, they have mostly positive takes on Bumpy’s role in the film, and how his character (basically playing himself) is treated respectfully, and conveys a genuine voice about Hawaiian issues, history and culture.

But I want to draw your attention to this blog post by Shay Chan Hodges, who brings a somewhat inside perspective on the filming of the movie and the issues it takes on, including the failure of Bank of America to live up to its still outstanding commitments to the Hawaiian people.

Here’s an excerpt, but please read the whole thing.

With Aloha, Cameron Crowe made a heartfelt effort to present a cultural narrative that has not been attempted before in a star-studded Hollywood production. The scenes with Bumpy and other residents of the village are the most authentic depictions of what Hawaii looks like, sounds like, and feels like of any feature film I’ve seen. In a review in The Atlantic entitled, “Aloha‘s Hawaii Shoots for Magic and Realism,” Lenika Cruz writes:

Kanahele speaks on his own turf and in his own words with Gilchrist and Ng about the problems and concerns of native Hawaiians, before inviting them to eat and drink with the rest of the community. It’s a touching, if short-lived, vignette that indisputably stems from genuine reverence and compassion for the people of Hawaii. Besides, when was the last time a major motion picture even glanced at the lives of America’s indigenous people with something other than mockery?

When it comes to cultural sensitivity, Aloha has been criticized for its titlelack of Asian representation, and Emma Stone being cast as a mixed-race character. Yet, the people I sat with in the theater two weeks ago shared the rare experience of seeing their realities reflected in a major motion picture — including ongoing tensions between the struggle for sovereignty and the power of multinational corporations that operate as if they are above the law.

OHA transfers nation-building task

By Timothy Hurley

Honolulu Star-Advertiser

May 29, 2015

In a move to maintain its neutrality, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs is handing off responsibility for the final stage of its nation-building campaign to a new group that will independently administer an election of delegates, convention and final ratification vote.

Na’i Aupuni, a group of five volunteer and unpaid directors with ties to Hawaiian royalty, has been given nearly $2.6 million originally earmarked for the effort aimed at moving Native Hawaiians a step closer to self-determination as authorized by the state under Act 195.

Continue reading OHA transfers nation-building task

‘Aloha’ movie is Crowe’s ‘love letter’ to the isles

Director Crowe calls ‘Aloha’ his ‘love letter’ to the isles

By Ed Rampell / Special to the Star-Advertiser

POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, May 28, 2015


Native Hawaiian sovereignty activist Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele, left, with Bradley Cooper and Emma Stone in a scene from “Aloha” that was shot at Kanahele’s Waimanalo compound. The film opens Friday.

The romantic comedy starring Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone and Rachel McAdams, and featuring Native Hawaiian sovereignty activist Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele, has met with considerable controversy even before its release Friday. Some Native Hawaiians, including Hawaii State Film Commissioner Donne Dawson, slammed the film for its title, saying “aloha” has a deep spiritual meaning and the movie’s use of it perpetuates misrepresentations of Hawaiian culture. Additionally, the Media Action Network for Asian Americans complained about the dearth of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the story about a celebrated military contractor who returns to Hawaii and reconnects with a former love while unexpectedly falling for his Air Force escort.

Continue reading ‘Aloha’ movie is Crowe’s ‘love letter’ to the isles

Local participants say the movie ‘Aloha’ deserves its name

Local participants say the movie ‘Aloha’ deserves its name

Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Tuesday, May 26, 2015

By Mindy Pennybacker

The long, tall pavilion with a peaked roof could have been a canoe hale if it weren’t sitting high up in a mountain valley like an ark left by a receding flood. It had been left behind, actually, by the Hollywood production company that created it as a set for a luau in the Cameron Crowe film “Aloha,” which opens Friday.

The valley is Pu’uhonua o Waimanalo, nicknamed “Bumpy’s Village” after Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele, leader of the Nation of Hawaii, a sovereignty organization that leases the 45 acres from the state.

Continue reading Local participants say the movie ‘Aloha’ deserves its name