Addressing Americanization by the Hawaiian Council of Regency

The seventeenth of January will mark 126 years of the United States’ belligerent occupation of the Hawaiian Kingdom. This outcome was initiated by “acts of war” committed by U.S. forces when the U.S. diplomat ordered an invasion on January 16, 1893, which led to the unlawful overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom government on January 17th.[1] President Grover Cleveland, in his manifesto to the Congress on December 18, 1893, acknowledged that a “substantial wrong has thus been done which a due regard for our national character as well as the rights of the injured people requires we should endeavor to repair.”[2]

Instead of restoring the Hawaiian government under Queen Lili‘uokalani and repairing the “rights of the injured people,” the United States embarked on a history of deception, lies, the establishment of 118 military installations, and international crimes committed against civilians within Hawaiian territory. These injustices led to the restoration of the Hawaiian government, in situ, in 1995, in similar fashion to the formation of governments in exile during World War II under the doctrine of necessity, and to the Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom arbitration, which sought to address the rights of one of those “injured people,” Lance Paul Larsen, a Hawaiian subject. Mr. Larsen was subjected to an unfair trial, unlawful confinement and pillaging by the State of Hawai‘i. These are violations of the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, and the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV, which are considered war crimes.

Lance Paul Larsen v. the Hawaiian Kingdom

The dispute centered on the allegation by Mr. Larsen that the Hawaiian government was liable for “allowing the unlawful imposition of American municipal laws over [him] within the territorial jurisdiction of the Hawaiian Kingdom.” What Mr. Larsen had to overcome was whether he could proceed to hold the Hawaiian government liable for the violation of his rights without the participation of the United States who was the entity that allegedly violated his rights.

On March 3, 2000, a meeting was held in Washington, D.C., with Mr. John Crook from the U.S. State Department, Dr. Sai as Agent for the Hawaiian government, and Ms. Ninia Parks, counsel for Mr. Larsen, where the United States was formally invited to join in the arbitration. A few weeks later, the United States notified the Permanent Court of Arbitration (“PCA”) that it will not join in the proceedings but they asked permission from the Hawaiian government and Mr. Larsen if it could have access to all pleadings and records of the case. Permission was granted. For Mr. Larsen, this gave rise to the indispensable third-party rule and whether or not he could proceed against the Hawaiian government without the participation of the United States. Unlike national courts, international courts do not have subpoena powers.

The Larsen Tribunal eventually ruled that the United States was an indispensable third-party, and without its participation in the proceedings, the Tribunal could not determine what rights of Mr. Larsen were violated by the United States in order to hold the Hawaiian government accountable for the violation of those rights. The Tribunal, however, did state in its decision that the parties could pursue fact-finding through a commission of inquiry under the jurisdiction of the PCA whenever it may enter into an agreement to do so. Fact-finding is not affected by the indispensable third-party rule, which operates in similar fashion to a United States grand jury.

After the last day of the Larsen hearings were held at the PCA on December 11, 2000, the Council, was called to an urgent meeting by Dr. Jacques Bihozagara, Ambassador for the Republic of Rwanda assigned to Belgium. Ambassador Bihozagara had been attending a hearing before the International Court of Justice on December 8, 2000, (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Belgium), where he became aware of the Hawaiian arbitration case at the PCA.

The following day, the Council, which included Dr. Sai, as Agent, and two Deputy Agents, Peter Umialiloa Sai, acting Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Mrs. Kau‘i P. Sai-Dudoit, formerly known as Kau‘i P. Goodhue, acting Minister of Finance, met with Ambassador Bihozagara in Brussels, Belgium.[3] In that meeting, Ambassador Bihozagara explained, that since he accessed the pleadings and records of the Larsen case on December 8, he had been in communication with his government. This prompted the meeting where he conveyed to Dr. Sai, as Chairman of the Council and agent in the Larsen case, that his government was prepared to bring to the attention of the United Nations General Assembly the prolonged occupation of the Hawaiian Kingdom by the United States.

After careful deliberation, the Council decided that it could not, in good conscience, accept this offer. The Council felt the timing was premature because Hawai‘i’s population remained ignorant of Hawai‘i’s profound legal position due to institutionalized denationalization—Americanization by the United States. Therefore, on behalf of the Council, Dr. Sai graciously thanked Ambassador Bihozagara for his government’s offer but stated that the Council first needed to address over a century of this denationalization. After an exchange of salutations, the meeting came to an end, and the Council returned that afternoon to The Hague.

Exposure of the Continuity of the Hawaiian Kingdom through the medium of Education

The decision by the Council to forego Ambassador Bihozagara’s invitation was made in line with section 495—Remedies of Injured Belligerent, United States Army FM-27-10, which states, “In the event of violation of the law of war, the injured party may legally resort to remedial action of the following types: a. Publication of the facts, with a view to influencing public opinion against the offending belligerent.”[4] Publication of the facts was the means the Council would focus its attention on to expose the prolonged occupation of the Hawaiian Kingdom and the circumstances of the Larsen case.

“When a well packaged web of lies has been sold to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous, and its speaker, a raving lunatic.” -Donald James Wheal

The belligerent occupation of the Hawaiian Kingdom by the United States rests squarely within the regime of the law of occupation in international humanitarian law. The application of the regime of occupation law “does not depend on a decision taken by an international authority”,[5] and “the existence of an armed conflict is an objective test and not a national ‘decision.’”[6] According to Article 42 of the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, a State’s territory is considered occupied when it is “actually placed under the authority of the hostile army.”

Article 42 has three requisite elements: (1) the presence of a foreign State’s forces; (2) the exercise of authority over the occupied territories by the foreign State or its proxy; and (3) the non-consent by the occupied State. U.S. President Grover Cleveland’s aforementioned manifesto to the Congress, which is Annexure 1 in the Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom Award, and the continued U.S. presence today without a treaty of peace firmly meets all three elements of Article 42. Hawai‘i’s people, however, have become denationalized and the history of the Hawaiian Kingdom has been, for all intents and purposes, obliterated since the United States’ takeover.

The Council needed to explain to Hawai‘i’s people that before the Permanent Court of Arbitration (“PCA”) could facilitate the formation of the Larsen tribunal the PCA had to ensure that it possessed “institutional jurisdiction.”[7] This jurisdiction required that the Hawaiian Kingdom be an existing “State.” This finding authorized the Hawaiian Kingdom’s access to the PCA pursuant to Article 47 of the 1907 Hague Convention for the Pacific Settlement of International Disputes, as a non-Contracting Power to the convention.

The PCA accepted the Larsen case as a dispute between a “State” and “private entity” and, in its annual reports from 2001 to 2011, acknowledged the Hawaiian Kingdom as a non-Contracting Power under Article 47 of the 1907 Hague Convention for the Pacific Settlement of International Disputes. For Hawai‘i’s people, this acknowledgement is significant on two levels, first, the Hawaiian Kingdom had to exist as a State under international law, otherwise the PCA would not have accepted the dispute to be settled through international arbitration, and, second, the PCA explicitly recognized the Hawaiian Kingdom as a non-Contracting Power (State) to the 1907 Hague Convention, I. A non-Contracting Power is a State that is not a signatory to the Convention.

To accomplish this educational goal, it was decided by the Council that Dr. Sai enter the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa political science department and secure an M.A. degree specializing in international relations, and then a Ph.D. with focus on the continuity of the Hawaiian Kingdom as an independent and sovereign State that has been under a prolonged occupation. From the University of Hawai‘i political science department, Professor Neal Milner, Professor John Wilson, and Professor Katherina Hyer; from the University of Hawai‘i Hawaiian Studies department, Professor Jon Osorio; from the University of Hawai‘i William S. Richardson School of Law—Professor Aviam Soifer; and from the University of London, SOAS, Professor Matthew Craven, served as members of his doctoral committee.

The Council’s objective was to engage over a century of denationalization through the medium of academic research and publications, both peer review and law review. As a result, awareness of the Hawaiian Kingdom’s political status has grown exponentially with multiple master’s theses, doctoral dissertations, and publications being written on the subject. What the world knew, before the Larsen case was held from 1999-2001, was drastically transformed to now. This transformation was the result of academic research in spite of the continued American occupation. The “injured people” began to ask the right questions.

“If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don’t have to worry about answers.” -Thomas Pynchon

This scholarship prompted a well-known historian in Hawai‘i, Tom Coffman, to change the subtitle of his book in 2009, which Duke University republished in 2016, from The Story of America’s Annexation of the Nation of Hawai‘i to The History of the American Occupation of Hawai‘i. Coffman explained:

I am compelled to add that the continued relevance of this book reflects a far-reaching political, moral and intellectual failure of the United States to recognize and deal with its takeover of Hawai‘i. In the book’s subtitle, the word Annexation has been replaced by the word Occupation, referring to America’s occupation of Hawai‘i. Where annexation connotes legality by mutual agreement, the act was not mutual and therefore not legal. Since by definition of international law there was no annexation, we are left with the word occupation.

In making this change, I have embraced the logical conclusion of my research into the events of 1893 to 1898 in Honolulu and Washington, D.C. I am prompted to take this step by a growing body of historical work by a new generation of Native Hawaiian scholars. Dr. Keanu Sai writes, ‘The challenge for…the fields of political science, history, and law is to distinguish between the rule of law and the politics of power.’ In the history of Hawai‘i, the might of the United States does not make it right.[8]

In 2016, Japan’s Seijo University’s Center for Glocal Studies published an article by Dennis Riches titled This is not America: The Acting Government of the Hawaiian Kingdom Goes Global with Legal Challenges to End Occupation. At the center of this article was the continuity of the Hawaiian Kingdom, the Council of Regency, and the commission war crimes. Riches, who is Canadian, wrote:

[The history of the Baltic States] is a close analog of Hawai‘i because the occupation by a superpower lasted over several decades through much of the same period of history. The restoration of the Baltic States illustrates that one cannot say too much time has passed, too much has changed, or a nation is gone forever once a stronger nation annexes it. The passage of time doesn’t erase sovereignty, but it does extend the time which the occupying power has to neglect its duties and commit a growing list of war crimes.

Additionally, school teachers, throughout the Hawaiian Islands, have also been made aware of the American occupation through course work at the University of Hawai‘i and they are teaching this material in the middle schools and the high schools. This exposure led the Hawai‘i State Teachers Association (“HSTA”), which represents public school teachers throughout Hawai‘i, to introduce a resolution—New Business Item 37, on July 4, 2017, at the annual assembly of the National Education Association (“NEA”) in Boston, Massachusetts. The NEA represents 3.2 million public school teachers, administrators, and faculty and administrators of universities throughout the United States. The resolution stated:

The NEA will publish an article that documents the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Monarchy in 1893, the prolonged illegal occupation of the United States in the Hawaiian Kingdom, and the harmful effects that this occupation has had on the Hawaiian people and resources of the land.

When the HSTA delegates in attendance returned to Hawai‘i, they asked Dr. Sai to write three articles for the NEA to publish: first, The Illegal Overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom Government (April 2, 2018); second, The U.S. Occupation of the Hawaiian Kingdom (October 1, 2018); and, third, The Impact of the U.S. Occupation on the Hawaiian People (October 13, 2018). Awareness of the Hawaiian Kingdom’s situation has reached countless classrooms across the United States. These publications by the NEA was the Council’s crowning jewel which stemmed from the Council’s decision to address denationalization after returning home from the PCA in 2000.

Russian Government Admits Hawai‘i was Illegally Annexed

This exposure also prompted the Russian government, on October 4, 2018, to admit that Hawai‘i was illegally annexed by the United States. This acknowledgement occurred at a seminar entitled “Russian America: Hawaiian Pages 200 Years After” held at the PIR-CENTER, Institute of Contemporary International Studies, Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Foreign Ministry, in Moscow. The topic of the seminar was the restoration of Fort Elizabeth, a Russian fort built on the island of Kaua‘i in 1817.

Leading the seminar was Dr. Vladimir Orlov, director of the PIR-CENTER. Notable participants included Deputy Foreign Minister Sergej Ryabkov, Head of the Department of European Co-operation and specialist on nuclear and other disarmament negotiations, and Russian Ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov. In his concluding remarks Dr. Orlov, who incidentally referred to the U.S. military installations at Barking Sands, mentioned as an aside and in a relatively low voice: “The annexation of Hawai‘i by the US was of course illegal and everyone knows it.”

United Nations Independent Expert on Hawai‘i’s Occupation

This educational exposure also prompted United Nations Independent Expert, Dr. Alfred M. deZayas, to send a communication, dated February 25, 2018, to members of the State of Hawai‘i Judiciary stating that the Hawaiian Kingdom is an occupied State and that the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, and the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV, must be complied with. In that communication, Dr. deZayas stated:

I have come to understand that the lawful political status of the Hawaiian Islands is that of a sovereign nation-state in continuity; but a nation-state that is under a strange form of occupation by the United States resulting from an illegal military occupation and a fraudulent annexation. As such, international laws (the Hague and Geneva Conventions) require that governance and legal matters within the occupied territory of the Hawaiian Islands must be administered by the application of the laws of the occupied state (in this case, the Hawaiian Kingdom), not the domestic laws of the occupier (the United States).

This UN Independent Expert clearly stated the application of “the Hague and Geneva Conventions” requires the administration of Hawaiian Kingdom law, not United States law, in Hawaiian territory. This issue was at the center of the Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom arbitration case. His characterization of a “strange occupation” is not a diminishment of the law of occupation, but rather a consequence of not complying with the law of occupation. This noncompliance has created the façade of an incorporated territory of the United States called the State of Hawai‘i. The State of Hawai‘i is a de facto proxy for the United States and maintains effective control over Hawaiian territory. The War Report 2017 refers to such entities as an armed non-state actor (ANSA) “operating in another state when that support is so significant that the foreign state is deemed to have ‘overall control’ over the actions of the ANSA.”[9]

Between the years of 1893 to 1898, the Hawaiian Kingdom was occupied by an American proxy of insurgents. There is no treaty of peace between the Hawaiian Kingdom and the United States except for the unilateral annexation of the Hawaiian Islands by a joint resolution of Congress. Whether by proxy or not, the United States is the occupying State and “as the right of an occupant in occupied territory is merely a right of administration, he may [not] annex it, while the war continues.”[10] The ICRC Commentary on Article 47 also emphasize, “It will be well to note that the reference to annexation in this Article cannot be considered as implying recognition of this manner of acquiring sovereignty.”[11]

The “Occupying Power cannot…annex the occupied territory, even if it occupies the whole of the territory concerned. A decision on that point can only be reached in a peace treaty. This is a universally-recognized rule and is endorsed by jurists and confirmed by numerous rulings of international and national courts.”[12] Therefore, according to the ICRC, “an Occupying Power continues to be bound to apply the Convention as a whole even when, in disregard of the rules of international law, it claims to have annexed all or part of an occupied territory.”[13] In other words, since there is no treaty of peace between the Hawaiian Kingdom and the United States, there was no annexation.

To understand what the UN Independent Expert called a “fraudulent annexation,” attention is drawn to the floor of the Senate on July 4, 1898, where U.S. Senator William Allen of Nebraska stated:

“The Constitution and the statutes are territorial in their operation; that is, they can not have any binding force or operation beyond the territorial limits of the government in which they are promulgated. In other words, the Constitution and statutes can not reach across the territorial boundaries of the United States into the territorial domain of another government and affect that government or persons or property therein.”[14]

Two years later, on February 28, 1900, during a debate on senate bill no. 222 that proposed the establishment of a U.S. government to be called the Territory of Hawai‘i, Senator Allen reiterated, “I utterly repudiate the power of Congress to annex the Hawaiian Islands by a joint resolution such as passed the Senate. It is ipso facto null and void.”[15] In response, Senator John Spooner of Wisconsin, a constitutional lawyer, dismissively remarked, “that is a political question, not subject to review by the courts.”[16] Senator Spooner explained, “The Hawaiian Islands were annexed to the United States by a joint resolution passed by Congress. I reassert…that that was a political question and it will never be reviewed by the Supreme Court or any other judicial tribunal.”[17]

Senator Spooner never argued that congressional laws have authority beyond United States territory. Instead, he said this issue would never see the light of day because United States courts would not review it due to the political question doctrine. What Senator Spooner meant was no matter how illegal the annexation was, the American courts will have to accept it because Congress did it. For an explanation of the evolution of the political question doctrine regarding Hawai‘i go to this link. This exchange between the two Senators is troubling, but it acknowledges the limitation of congressional laws and the political means by which to conceal an internationally wrongful act. The Territory of Hawai‘i is the predecessor of the State of Hawai‘i.

It would take another ninety years before the U.S. Department of Justice addressed this issue. In a 1988 legal opinion, the Office of Legal Counsel examined the purported annexation of the Hawaiian Islands by a congressional joint resolution. Douglas Kmiec, Acting Assistant Attorney General, authored this opinion for Abraham D. Sofaer, legal advisor to the U.S. Department of State. After covering the limitation of congressional authority, which, in effect, confirmed the statements made by Senator Allen, Assistant Attorney General Kmiec concluded:

Notwithstanding these constitutional objections, Congress approved the joint resolution and President McKinley signed the measure in 1898. Nevertheless, whether this action demonstrates the constitutional power of Congress to acquire territory is certainly questionable. … It is therefore unclear which constitutional power Congress exercised when it acquired Hawaii by joint resolution. Accordingly, it is doubtful that the acquisition of Hawaii can serve as an appropriate precedent for a congressional assertion of sovereignty over an extended territorial sea.[18]

War Crimes—Violations of the Hague and Geneva Conventions

All this education and exposure has motivated an elected official for the State of Hawai‘i, while still in office, to take steps to conform to the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, and the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV. Her story was published by the British news outlet The Guardian, titled Hawai‘i politician stops voting, claiming islands are ‘occupied sovereign country.’ Other public officials of the State of Hawai‘i have also become aware of the American occupation and are taking steps to conform with international humanitarian law. They have reached out to Dr. Sai for consultation.

Moreover, on October 11, 2018, the Federal Bureau of Investigation was sent a letter, from Jennifer Ruggles, the aforementioned State of Hawai‘i public official, reporting war crimes committed by the Queen’s Hospital, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §2441 and §1091, and war crimes committed by thirty-two Circuit Judges of the State of Hawai‘i, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §2441.[19] Thereafter, Ms. Ruggles reported additional war crimes of pillaging committed by State of Hawai‘i tax collectors, in violation of §2441,[20] the war crime of unlawful appropriation of property by the President of the United States and the Internal Revenue Service, in violation of §2441,[21] and the war crime of destruction of property by the State of Hawai‘i on the summit of Mauna Kea, in violation of §2441.[22]

Naboth’s Vineyard

Within nearly two decades the Council has effectively changed the discourse of Hawai‘i politics and history from the façade of American colonization and the formation of the State of Hawai‘i to the continued existence of the Hawaiian Kingdom as a sovereign and independent State that has and continues to be under an illegal and prolonged occupation by the United States.

As we are entering over a century of non-compliance with the law of occupation and the commission of war crimes, accountability for these war crimes is just over the horizon. In her last chapter titled “Hawaiian Autonomy” of her 1898 autobiography, Hawai‘i’s Story by Hawai‘i’s Queen, Queen Lili‘uokalani warned:

Oh, honest Americans, as Christians, hear me for my down trodden people! Their form of government is as dear to them as yours is precious to you. Quite as warmly as you love your country, so they love theirs. With all your goodly possessions, covering a territory so immense that there yet remain parts unexplored, possessing islands that, although near at hand, had to be neutral ground in time of war, do not covet the little vineyard of Naboth’s so far from your shores, lest the punishment of Ahab fall upon you, if not in your day in that of your children, for “for be not deceived, God is not mocked.”


[1] Award (Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom), Annexure 1, President Cleveland’s message to the Senate and House of Representatives dated 18 December 1893, 119 ILR (2001), 566, 608.

[2] Id.

[3] David Keanu Sai, A Slippery Path towards Hawaiian Indigeneity, 10 J. L. & Soc. Challenges 69, 130-131 (2008).

[4] “United States Basic Field Manual F.M. 27-10 (Rules of Land Warfare), though not a source of law like a statute, prerogative order or decision of a court, is a very authoritative publication.” Trial of Sergeant-Major Shigeru Ohashi and Six Others, 5 Law Reports of Trials of Law Criminals (United Nations War Crime Commission) 27 (1949).

[5] C. Ryngaert and R. Fransen, “EU extraterritorial obligations with respect to trade with occupied territories: Reflections after the case of Front Polisario before EU courts,” [2018] 2(1): 7. Europe and the World: A law review [20], p. 8. (online at https://www.scienceopen.com/document_file/e5cc1ac6-41ee-40de-bbe9-25c9df97ab1e/ScienceOpen/EWLR-2-7.pdf).

[6] Stuart Casey-Maslen (ed.), The War Report 2012 ix (2013).

[7] United Nations, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development: Dispute Settlement (United Nations New York and Geneva, 2003), at 15.

[8] Tom Coffman, Nation Within: The History of the American Occupation of Hawai‘i xvi (2016).

[9] The War Report 2017, 22.

[10] Oppenheim, International Law, vol. II, 6th ed., 237 (1921).

[11] International Committee of Red Cross, Commentary: IV Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War 276 (1958).

[12] Id., 275.

[13] Id., 276.

[14] 31 Cong. Rec. 6635 (1898).

[15] 33 Cong. Rec. 2391 (1900).

[16] Id.

[17] Id.

[18] 12 Opinions of the Office of Legal Counsel 238, 252 (1988) (online at https://hawaiiankingdom.org/pdf/1988_Opinion_OLC.pdf).

[19] Letter from Jennifer Ruggles, Hawai‘i County Council member, State of Hawai‘i, to Sean Kaul, FBI Special Agent in Charge (11 Oct. 2018) (online at https://jenruggles.com/wp-content/uploads/Reporting_to_FBI_10.11.18.pdf).

[20] Letter from Jennifer Ruggles, Hawai‘i County Council member, State of Hawai‘i, to State of Hawai‘i officials regarding unlawful collection of taxes (15 Nov. 2018) (online at https://jenruggles.com/wp-content/uploads/Ltr-to-State-of-HI-re-Taxes.pdf).

[21] Letter from Jennifer Ruggles, Hawai‘i County Council member, State of Hawai‘i, to U.S. President Trump regarding unlawful appropriation of property (28 Nov. 2018) (online at https://jenruggles.com/wp-content/uploads/Ltr_to_President_Trump.pdf).

[22] Letter from Jennifer Ruggles, Hawai‘i County Council member, State of Hawai‘i, to State of Hawai‘i Governor Ige and Supreme Court Justices regarding unlawful destruction of property on the summit of Mauna Kea (3 Dec. 2018) (online at https://jenruggles.com/wp-content/uploads/Ltr-to-Gov.-and-Sup.-Ct.pdf).

British Newspaper The Guardian: Hawai‘i Politician Stops Voting, Claiming Islands are ‘Occupied Sovereign Country’

Two days after celebrations of Hawaiian Independence Day took place throughout the Hawaiian Islands, the British Newspaper “The Guardian” published an article on Hawai‘i County Council Member Jennifer Ruggles titled Hawaii politician stops voting, claiming islands are ‘occupied.’

Important take aways from a good article.

  • After the Guardian reporter reached out to the U.S. Department of State and State of Hawai‘i Governor for comment on Jennifer Ruggles’ position that war crimes are being committed throughout the Hawaiian Islands and on the memorandum of the United Nations Independent Expert to State of Hawai‘i Judges stating that the Hague and Geneva Conventions obligate the United States to administer Hawaiian Kingdom laws and not the domestic laws of the United States, both offices gave no comment. If Hawai‘i was not an occupied State, but rather legally a part of the United States, and that the Hague and Geneva Conventions don’t apply to Hawai‘i, the State Department and the Governor’s office would have surely stated that. Instead they gave no comment. When a government agency gives no comment it would imply that they cannot deny the facts of the story.
  • Dr. deZayas statement that Hawai‘i is “formally” a part of the United States. Careful statement made because the word formally is defined as “pertaining to the outward aspect of something as distinguished from its substance or material.” Formally is not the same as legally.
  • Spokesman from the United Nations Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights stated “They are [Dr. deZayas’] own views.” This is true because it was his view as United Nations Independent Expert before his term expired in April 2018.
  • In his February 25, 2018 memorandum to the State of Hawai‘i, Dr. deZayas clearly stated, “currently serving as the UN Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, I have come to understand that the lawful political status of the Hawaiian Islands is that of a sovereign nation-state in continuity; but a nation-state that is under a strange form of occupation by the United States resulting from an illegal military occupation and a fraudulent annexation.”
  • The Guardian reported, “Keanu Sai, a political science lecturer at the University of Hawaii and member of the Hawaiian Kingdom provisional government, says the unilateral annexation of Hawaii by passing a law was tantamount to the US passing a law annexing the UK or any other country. Sai said: ‘You can’t pass a law annexing a foreign country.'”

#ProtectedPersonsHawaii
#WarCrimesHawaii

U.S. Federal Court Acknowledges the Continuity of the Hawaiian Kingdom and U.S. Violations of International Law

When the United States Senate resumed its debate of senate bill no. 222 to provide a government for the Territory of Hawai‘i in 1900, there was an exchange between Senator William Allen of Nebraska and Senator John Spooner of Wisconsin that warrants special attention. Two years earlier, Senator Allen voted against the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands by congressional legislation.

During the debate on July 4, 1898, Senator Allen said, “The Constitution and the statutes are territorial in their operation; that is, they can not have any binding force or operation beyond the territorial limits of the government in which they are promulgated. In other words, the Constitution and statutes can not reach across the territorial boundaries of the United States into the territorial domain of another government and affect that government or persons or property therein (31 Cong. Rec. 6635).”

He continued to clarify, that the “power of acquiring additional territory, rests exclusively in the President and the Senate, that it is an executive power which in its very nature can not be exercised by the House of Representatives, and that the only method of exercising it is by treaty and not by joint resolution or act of Congress; and the case of Texas, when rightly understood, forms no exception to this rule; therefore an attempt to annex or acquire territory by act or joint resolution of Congress is in violation of the letter, spirit, and policy of the Constitution (id.).”

Consistent with his position in 1898, Senator Allen asserted on February 28, 1900, “I utterly repudiate the power of Congress to annex the Hawaiian Islands by a joint resolution such as passed the Senate. It is ipso facto null and void (33 Cong. Rec. 2391).” If the annexation was null and void, then there would be no need to debate senate bill no. 222 that would establish an American government on Hawaiian territory. Senator Spooner response to Senator Allen was “that is a political question, not subject to review by the courts (id.).” He then reiterated, “The Hawaiian Islands were annexed to the United States by a joint resolution passed by Congress. I reassert…that that was a political question and it will never be reviewed by the Supreme Court or any other judicial tribunal (id.).”

What did Senator Spooner mean that “it will never be reviewed by the Supreme Court or any other judicial tribunal.” He was referring to the “political question” doctrine. William Howard Taft acknowledged that Senator Spooner was “a great constitutional lawyer,” which is why he knew precisely what the political question doctrine was when he said it. Under this doctrine that was in use by American courts at the time, to include the United States Supreme Court, political questions were considered by the courts as factual determinations made by the executive and legislative branches. As such, these determinations, even if they were considered by the courts as unconstitutional, would bind the courts to accept them as conclusive. What Senator Spooner meant was no matter how illegal the annexation was, the American courts will have to accept it because Congress did it.

As an example, the U.S. Supreme Court in Williams v. Suffolk Ins. Co., 38 U.S. (13 Pet.) 415, 420 (1839) treated as binding on the court the executive’s determination that a given country was in control of foreign territory “whether the executive be right or wrong.” According to Nelson “an important branch of [the political question] doctrine operated to identify factual questions on which courts would accept the political branches’ determinations as binding.” See Caleb Nelson, Adjudication in the Political Branches, 107 Colum. L. Rev. 559, 592-93 (2007). Under this doctrine courts at the time did not question whether it had jurisdiction to resolve a political question “but rather enforced and applied the political branches’ determinations.” See Tara Leigh Grove, The Lost History of the Political Question Doctrine, 90 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 1908, 1963 (Dec. 2015).

Senator Spooner’s statement is not only telling but malicious. The federal government knew that the illegal annexation of Hawai‘i would be locked within the American political system under the political question doctrine and never see the light of day. This shows an intent on the part of the United States government to conceal the fact that the annexation of Hawai‘i by a joint resolution, as Senator Allen stated, was “ipso facto null and void.” The political question doctrine, however, would later be revamped by the United States Supreme Court in Baker v. Carr, 369 U.S. 186 (1962) that would ironically unlock the door in exposing the prolonged occupation of Hawai‘i and the violations of international law.

Moving away from the courts accepting the factual determinations of the political branches as binding, the Supreme Court would now assert a revised doctrine where the courts would deny it has jurisdiction to address a political question because that decision has to be addressed by either of the two political branches—the executive or legislative, not the judicial branch. The issue would no longer be the acceptance of the factual determinations made by the executive or legislative branches, but whether or not the courts have jurisdiction to hear the case. It would now become a question of whether a case was justiciable or non-justiciable. In other words, under the traditional doctrine where the courts did not dismiss as non-justiciable but rather enforced the political branches determinations whether they were “right or wrong,” the courts under the modern doctrine would dismiss as non-justiciable because there exists a political question.

Today the invoking of the political question doctrine in cases that have been filed in federal courts come by way of a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(1) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or done by the court’s own volition called sua sponte. Rule 12(b)(1) addresses subject matter jurisdiction, which is whether the court has jurisdiction to hear the case before it. Where a motion to dismiss on subject matter jurisdiction grounds would be filed is in a situation where a prosecutor is attempting to prosecute someone for murder in traffic court. A traffic court does not have subject matter jurisdiction to prosecute a murder case, another type of court does. Applying the modern political question doctrine, the American courts would say the proper jurisdiction is either with executive or legislative branches of government and not the courts.

Therefore, the court’s dismissal of the case because of a political question only addresses the jurisdictional question of whether the court can preside over the case and not the merits of the case. In fact, under the modern doctrine, when a court dismisses a case as a political question under Rule 12(b)(1), the court accepts as true the factual allegations in the complaint.

In 2008, the federal district court in Washington, D.C., dismissed a case concerning Taiwan as a political question under Rule 12(b)(1) in Lin v. United States, 539 F. Supp. 2d 173 (D.D.S. 2008). The federal court in its order stated that it “must accept as true all factual allegations contained in the complaint when reviewing a motion to dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1).” When this case went on appeal, the D.C. Appellate Court underlined the modern doctrine of the political question, “We do not disagree with Appellants’ assertion that we could resolve this case through treaty analysis and statutory construction; we merely decline to do so as this case presents a political question which strips us of jurisdiction to undertake that otherwise familiar task.” See Lin v. United States, 561 F.3d 506 (2009).

In 2018, federal judge Tanya S. Chutkan presided over Sai v. TrumpPetition for Writ of Mandamus, which sought an order from the federal court to compel President Trump to comply with the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, and the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV, by administering the laws of the Hawaiian Kingdom as an occupied State. The case was filed on June 25, 2018 with the United States District Court for the District of Columbia and assigned civil case no. 1:18-cv-01500.

The factual allegations of the complaint were stated in paragraphs 79 through 205 under the headings From a State of Peace to a State of War, The Duty of Neutrality by Third States, Obligation of the United States to Administer Hawaiian Kingdom laws, Denationalization through Americanization, The State of Hawai‘i is a Private Armed Force, The Restoration of the Hawaiian Kingdom Government, Recognition De Facto of the Restored Hawaiian Government, War Crimes: 1907 Hague Convention, IV, and War Crimes: 1949 Geneva Convention, IV.

On September 11, 2018, Judge Chutkan, on her own accord (sua sponte), issued an order dismissing the case as a political question. On the very same day the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia filed a “Motion for Extension of Time to Answer in light of the order dismissing this action,” but it was denied by minute order. Judge Chutkan stated, “Because Sai’s claims involve a political question, this court is without jurisdiction to review his claims and the court will therefore DISMISS the Petition.” By dismissing the complaint, the Court accepted “as true all factual allegations contained in the complaint.”

Under the traditional political question doctrine, the Federal Court would have accepted as true the annexation of Hawai‘i even though it wasn’t, but under the modern doctrine it accepted as true the “illegality” of the annexation as well as the violations of international law since the American invasion of the Hawaiian Kingdom on January 16, 1893.

For the first time since President Grover Cleveland, in his message to the Congress on December 18, 1893, presented the facts of the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom government, the United States government, through its federal court in Washington, D.C., accepted “as true” the facts of the prolonged occupation of the Hawaiian Kingdom and the commission of war crimes.

The proper venue for resolving the violations of international law is not with the executive or legislative branches of the United States government, but rather international bodies, which will include the International Commission of Inquiry in Incidents of War Crimes in the Hawaiian Islands—The Larsen Case (Hawaiian Kingdom – Lance Paul Larsen) under the jurisdiction of the Permanent Court of Arbitration. These proceedings stemmed from the Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom arbitration.

The United States has admitted to the violations of international law. Drawing from the Miranda warning, “Anything you say may be used against you in a court of law.”

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#WarCrimesHawaii

Council Member Ruggles Places the State of Hawai‘i on Notice for Pillaging Protected Persons

Council member Jen Ruggles released a letter today that she had sent to Governor Ige, every mayor, and every county taxation department in the State of Hawai‘i regarding “War crimes of pillaging committed against Protected Persons by the State of Hawai‘i and its Four Counties.”

The letter begins by stating, “To my dismay, I have become aware of Hawai‘i’s status as a nation-state, under international law, which has been under an illegal occupation by the United States since it, by its own admission, illegally overthrew the Hawaiian Kingdom government on January 17, 1893.” Referring to President Cleveland’s 1893 address to the U.S. Congress where he declared U.S. had committed “an act of war” against the Hawaiian Kingdom, she writes, “these acts of war created a state of war between itself and the Hawaiian Kingdom…International law bound, and still binds, the United States to adhere to the law of occupation.”

Ruggles also referred to the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner, Dr. Alfred de Zayas’ memorandum sent to Hawaii State judges this past February which stated Hawai‘i was “under a strange form of occupation by the United States resulting from an illegal military occupation and a fraudulent annexation.”

“After reading Dr. de Zayas’s memorandum,” Ruggles wrote, “I attempted to verify his claim of ‘a fraudulent annexation.’ It became apparent to me that there is no clear U.S. constitutional basis for the enforcement of United States law on Hawaiian Kingdom territory…As a Council member, I have come to understand that legislation is limited to the territorial jurisdiction of the law-making body. The U.S. Congress has no constitutional authority, nor any authority under international law, to unilaterally annex a foreign country by a joint resolution.”

Ruggles also noted that according to international law definitions, what is called the “State of Hawai‘i” is, in fact, an “organized armed force.” “The State of Hawai‘i cannot, therefore claim to be a lawful government because its only claim to authority derives from U.S. congressional legislation that has no extraterritorial effect,” Ruggles wrote,  “The ‘State of Hawai‘i’ meets the jus in bello—the laws of war definition of an organized armed group acting for and on behalf of the United States within the territory of the Hawaiian Kingdom.”

According to Ruggles, because there is no evidence that Hawaii was ever legally made apart of the United States, the laws of occupation apply. These laws would include the Hague and Geneva Conventions, which are U.S. ratified treaties. According to Title 18, section 2441 of the United States Code, any breach to these treaties constitute “war crimes.”

Article 64 of the 1949 Geneva Convention mandates that the laws of the occupied territory must remain in force. Ruggles says these laws include the 1882 Hawaiian Kingdom Act To Consolidate and Amend the Law Relating to Internal Taxes which consists of poll, school, dog, horse, mule, road, and real and personal property taxes. Ruggles asserts that the State of Hawaii and the four counties collection of money from protected persons is a form of pillaging.

Black’s Law dictionary defines plunder as to “pillage or loot. To take property from persons or places by open force, and this may be in course of war…The term is also used to express the idea of taking property from a person or place, without just right.” The U.S. ratified Hague and Geneva Conventions specifically prohibit pillaging.

“This letter serves to give you both knowledge, and ‘awareness of the factual circumstances that established the existence of an armed conflict’ between the Hawaiian Kingdom and the United States, the application of the HCIV and GCIV, and the protection afforded aboriginal Hawaiians as protected persons,” Ruggles wrote, “Therefore, you must cease and desist from committing these war crimes unless the State of Hawai‘i transforms itself into a Military Government recognizable under international law”

Council member Ruggles concluded the letter with an excerpt from a report Dr. Keanu Sai had provided Governor Ige’s Chief of Staff, Mike McCartney in 2015 titled “Report on Military Government.” According to the report, the State of Hawaii is obligated to comply with U.S. Army Field Manual FM 27-5 and establish a military government to work with the acting Hawaiian Kingdom Government to provisionally serve as the administrator of the laws of the Hawaiian Kingdom.

During Ruggles’ October Town Hall she explained how she is doing her job “as mandated by her oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution that says treaties are the supreme law of the land through putting every agent of the United States in Hawaii concerning the rights of protected persons on notice for violations of the Hague and Geneva Conventions.”

Ruggles confirmed Governor Ige, Mayor Kim, Mayor Arakawa, Mayor Caldwell, Mayor Carvalho, Linda Chu Takayama, Lisa Miura, Mark Walker, Nelson H. Koyanagi, Jr., and Ken Shimonishi all received her letter on November 19th, 2018.

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#WarCrimesHawaii

NEA Teachers Union Published Third and Final Article on the American Occupation of Hawai‘i

As part of a three part series the National Education Association (NEA) has published the third and final article on the American occupation of Hawai‘i. The NEA is the largest labor union in the United States comprised of public school teachers, administrators, and faculty and administrators of universities. This third and final article is titled “The Impact of the U.S. Occupation on the Hawaiian People.”

The NEA’s article stems from a resolution that was passed by its delegates who met at their annual convention in 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts.

The resolution was introduced by the delegates of the Hawai‘i State Teachers Association, which is an affiliate labor union of the NEA, and it passed on July 4, 2017. The resolution was referred to as New Business Item 37, which stated:

“The NEA will publish an article that documents the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Monarchy in 1893, the prolonged occupation of the United States in the Hawaiian Kingdom and the harmful effects that this occupation has had on the Hawaiian people and resources of the land.”

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State of Hawai‘i Official Reports Queen’s Hospital and Hawai‘i State Judges to FBI

Puna Council Member Ruggles Reports Queen’s Hospital and Hawaii State Judges to the FBI

Puna Council Member Jen Ruggles received confirmation that Hawaii’s Federal Bureau of Investigation, (FBI), Special Agent in Charge, Sean Kaul, received her letter reporting Queen’s Hospital and Hawaii Circuit Court Judges for alleged war crimes Monday. Ruggles opened the letter by writing, “To my dismay, I have become aware of Hawai‘i’s status as a nation-state, under international law, which has been under an illegal occupation by the United States since it, by its own admission, illegally overthrew the Hawaiian Kingdom government on January 17, 1893.”

Ruggles made reference to a memorandum released by the United Nation Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner that she says, caused her to look into the issue of potential war crimes more seriously. Ruggles says the memorandum uses the terms “plundering,” “enabling,” and “colluding,” and that she could not take it lightly. In her report to the FBI, she also referred to an article published by the National Education Association in April this year which concluded Hawaii is illegally occupied and that the laws of war apply. The NEA is America’s largest union in the United States with over 3 million members. The Hawaii State Teacher’s association is Hawaii’s chapter.

According to Ruggles, war crimes are felonies and she is legally obligated to report felonies under Title 18 United States Code §4 “Misprision of a Felony” which reads that any person, “having knowledge of the actual commission of a felony cognizable by a court of the United States, conceals and does not as soon as possible make known the same to some judge or other person in civil or military authority under the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.” Ruggles says the FBI’s primary responsibility is to investigate federal crimes. Ruggles also cc’d the International Criminal Court located in the Hague, Netherlands.

Ruggles said, “if the FBI has evidence that the Hawaiian Kingdom does not exist as an independent nation State that has been in an unjust state of war with the U.S. since 1893, and that war crimes and the international crime of genocide as defined under federal law have not taken place, I want to see that evidence. If not, then the FBI is obligated to immediately initiate a criminal investigation.”

Last month Ruggles had sent a letter to Queen’s Hospital explaining how it appears they are committing war crimes against protected persons by abrogating their original charter which mandated free health care to aboriginal Hawaiians. Ruggles also sent a letter to every Hawaii State Circuit Court Judge outlining how foreclosures violate the rights of protected persons in Hawaii, (including Americans), and constitute war crimes.

Ruggles wants to be clear that she is not advocating for those who borrowed money from the lender to disregard their debt owed. As she stated in the letter to the judges, “The lender is protected under the loan title insurance policy that was purchased by the borrower as a condition of the loan. As such, there is no reason to have any foreclosure proceedings in the first place because the defects in titles have rendered all mortgage liens invalid.” According to Ruggles, a defect in title is a covered risk in the loan title insurance policy, and, as such, the lenders should file an insurance claim to have the insurance company pay off the debt owed since the borrower was required to purchase the insurance policy to protect the lender as a condition of the loan.

During Ruggles’ last town hall she announced that she would be “putting every agent of the United States on notice concerning the rights of protected persons.”

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Ruggles Puts Hawai‘i State Judges on Notice for Appearing to Commit War Crimes in Foreclosure Proceedings

Informs judges that foreclosure proceedings appear to be in violation of Article 46 of the Hague Convention, IV and Article 47 of the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV

Council member Ruggles released a letter today that she says she sent to all Hawai‘i Circuit Court judges meant to advocate on behalf of protected persons in foreclosure proceedings.

Ruggles says “Article 46 of the Hague Convention IV provides that ‘Private property cannot be confiscated,” and article 47 of the Geneva Convention IV provides, “Pillage is formally forbidden.”

Ruggles referred to the United Nations Human Rights Independent Expert, Dr. Alfred deZaya’s memorandum that had been sent to Hawaii State Judges in February of this year that stated, “The State of Hawaii courts should not lend themselves to a flagrant violation of the rights of the land title holders and in consequence of pertinent international norms. Therefore, the courts of the State of Hawaii must not enable or collude in the wrongful taking of private lands, bearing in mind that the right to property is recognized not only in U.S. law but also in Article 17 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights…”

Ruggles wrote that “The ‘wrongful taking of private lands’ by lenders, through the circuit courts of the State of Hawai‘i under foreclosure proceedings, appears to be the war crime of pillaging and that the courts appear to be complicit in a war crime by enabling and colluding ‘in the wrongful taking of private lands.’

Before lenders loan money they require the borrower to mortgage their real estate as collateral to secure the repayment of the loan. In order for the lender to accept the mortgaged property as collateral, the lender requires the borrower to also purchase a loan title insurance policy for the protection of the lender. The title insurance covers the full debt owed under the promissory note.

“As an agent for the United States I am bound ‘to ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances,’ and, therefore, call upon you to cease and desist ‘in the wrongful taking of private lands’ from protected persons that are under foreclosure,” Ruggles wrote, “the lender is protected under the loan title insurance policy that was purchased by the borrower as a condition of the loan. As such, there is no reason to have any foreclosure proceedings in the first place…”

Ruggles finished the letter by stating, “This letter serves as knowledge and ‘awareness of the factual circumstances that established the existence of an armed conflict’ between the Hawaiian Kingdom and the United States, the application of the HCIV and GCIV, and the protection afforded to protected persons.”

Ruggles sent the letters via certified mail and that she’s verified every judge across the islands received her letter on the Big Island and Oahu on September 25th, Kauai on September 26th, and Maui on September 27th.

Council member Ruggles will be holding a town hall on October 15th at 6pm at the Kea‘au Community Center to discuss this letter, among others that she is working on.

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#WarCrimesHawaii

Big Island Video News (BIVN): Ruggles Supporters Target Recent Councilmember Comments

HILO, Hawaiʻi – More testimony relating to the Hawaiian Kingdom and absent councilmember Jen Ruggles was delivered Wednesday at the Hawaiʻi County Council 

(BIVN)– The Hawaiʻi County Council again heard testimony from “protected persons” in support of absent Puna councilmember Jen Ruggles on Wednesday.

Hawaiian Kingdom subjects and advocates, as they have in the past, told the council to “cease and desist from legislating” until the county’s Corporation Counsel can assure the governing body that they are not incurring criminal liability under U.S. and international law. Ruggles’ council seat has sat empty during meetings as she awaits an opinion from Corp Counsel.

On September 24, Ruggles held a community meeting in Keaʻau to explain her ongoing absence from council, and to show her constituents how she came to understand the Hawaiian Kingdom still exists as a state in continuity that is under a “strange form of occupation” by the United States.

During the Keaʻau meeting, and in a subsequent media release, Ruggles announced she was putting Queen’s Health Systems on notice, saying that changes to the hospital’s charter since 1909 “appear to violate article 47 and 50 of the Geneva Convention IV.” Ruggles said she called upon the Chief Executive Office of the Queen’s Health System, Mr. Art Ushijima, and the “Board of Trustees to comply with the 1859 Charter and to admit aboriginal Hawaiians, as that term was understood under Kingdom law, for medical care free of charge. Failure to do so [would] appear to constitute war crimes under Article 47 and 50 of the [Geneva Convention, IV].”

Ruggles said, “as an agent of the the United States as defined under the Hague Convention and whistleblower, it is my duty to hold individuals and other officials of the State of Hawai‘i and the United States government accountable for apparent violations of the Hague and Geneva Conventions and the rights of civilians within the occupied territory under the title of protected persons.”

Ruggles’ fellow Hawaiʻi County Councilmembers weighed-in on the situation in recent news articles. A “perplexed” Hilo councilman Aaron Chung told the Hawaiʻi Tribune-Herald he found it very confusing that Ruggle’s “would use her title in the County Council to advance a particular position.”

The West Hawaiʻi Today reported on October 2 that Council Chair Valerie Poindexter said she was “not going to fund the office if she’s not going to do any more legislative work,” and has refused Ruggles’ request to hire a council aide to fill the position recently vacated by one of Ruggles’ two staffers.

Testifiers took aim at Poindexter on Wednesday. Kale Gumapac told the chair to “please be aware that by impeding Councilwoman Ruggles in anyway only provides more evidence for ‘War Crime’ charges against you with no statute of limitation.”

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#WarCrimesHawaii

Council Member Jenn Ruggles Puts Queen’s Hospital on Notice for Committing War Crimes Against Native Hawaiians

Council member Jen Ruggles released a letter she sent last week notifying Queen’s Health Systems of the illegal and prolonged occupation of Hawai’i and how it appears it may be violating the rights of protected persons in Hawai’i. She stated that she, as an agent for the United States, which is an occupying Power, and one who took an oath to support the constitution of the United States, is bound to uphold the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, and the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV, and ensure respect for the conventions in all circumstances.

In her letter Council member Ruggles referenced a February 25, 2018 communication from United Nations Independent Expert, Dr. Alfred M. deZayas, to the State of Hawai‘i judges in which he stated:

“I have come to understand that the lawful political status of the Hawaiian Islands is that of a sovereign nation-state in continuity; but a nation-state that is under a strange form of occupation by the United States resulting from an illegal military occupation and a fraudulent annexation. As such, international laws (the Hague and Geneva Conventions) require that governance and legal matters within the occupied territory of the Hawaiian Islands must be administered by the application of the laws of the occupied state (in this case, the Hawaiian Kingdom), not the domestic laws of the occupier (the United States).”

The U.S. Senate ratified the Hague and Geneva Conventions making both of these treaties part of federal law under Article VI of the federal constitution and which must be faithfully carried out in territory that the United States is occupying. As a whistle blower, Council member Ruggles sees it as her duty to hold individuals and other officials of the State of Hawai‘i and the United States government accountable for violations of the provisions of the Hague and Geneva Conventions and the rights of civilians within the occupied territory under the title of protected persons.

Council member Ruggles came to learn that the Queen’s Hospital was formed as a corporation on June 20, 1859. Article One of the Hospital’s Charter provides for the establishment of a permanent hospital for the “treatment of indigent sick and disabled Hawaiians, as well as such foreigners and others who may choose to avail themselves of the same.” It was understood, at the time, that the term ‘Hawaiians’ meant aboriginal Hawaiians, both pure and part. Under the Charter, the Hawaiian Monarch served as President of a Board of Trustees comprised of ten persons to be appointed by the government and ten persons to be elected by corporation shareholders.

The government appropriated funding for the maintenance of the hospital.

In 1900, George W. Smith, a Trustee of Queen’s Hospital, stated in an article published by the Pacific Commercial Advertiser that “Queen’s Hospital is, from the nature of its charter, a quasi-private institution. When it was chartered it was provided that all Hawaiians of native birth, should be treated free of charge. Foreigners were to be treated by payment of fees.”

No other country or government in the world at the time is known by her to have had such a system of government subsidized health care for a majority of its national population which was free of charge. The Soviet government followed this practice in 1920, but that was due to the political theory of communism. After the Second World War, in 1948, the British government followed suit, which, like the Hawaiian Kingdom, was not a communist State. The Nordic countries followed with Sweden in 1955, Iceland in 1956, Norway in 1956, Denmark in 1961, and Finland in 1964. The United States has never subsidized health care free of charge.

After pressure to sever the Hawaiian government’s interest in Queen’s Hospital and to no longer admit native Hawaiians free of charge, the Board of Trustees, with the approval of Territorial Governor, Walter F. Frear, amended the Charter. In 1909, the phrase in the original 1859 Charter “for the treatment of indigent sick and disabled Hawaiians” was replaced with “for the treatment of sick and disabled persons.” The change was made secretively. The only news coverage it received at the time was in one newspaper, the Evening Bulletin, which made no mention of the change of servicing aboriginal Hawaiians free of charge. Under the title of “IS APPROVED TRUSTEES REDUCED,” the Bulletin wrote,

“By the new amendment to their character, the application for which was approved by Governor Frear this morning, the number of trustees of Queen’s Hospital will be reduced from twenty to seven members. The responsibility of the government trusteeship will also cease with the new articles of incorporation.”

By 1939, Victor Stewart Kaleoaloha Houston, a former Congressional delegate for the Territory of Hawai‘i, “was presenting lectures at various Hawaiian Civic Clubs castigating Queen’s Hospital for ignoring Native Hawaiians’ medical needs and reneging on the promises of the original charter. In newspapers the main themes of Houston’s one man challenge to Queen’s practices was set out for the public by these questions: What ever happened to free medical care for Hawaiians and what is Queen’s doing with the Queen Emma Trust monies?”

Gradually aboriginal Hawaiians were denied health care unless they paid, and as time went on, this provision of the Queen’s Hospital charter was nearly forgotten. In 1967, the name of Queen’s Hospital was changed to the Queen’s Medical Center. In 1985, the Queen’s Health Systems with a Board of Trustees was established as the parent company of Queen’s Medical Center along with Molokai General Hospital, North Hawai‘i Community Hospital, Queen Emma Land Company, Queen’s Development Corporation, and Queen’s Insurance Exchange.  Under Queen’s Health Systems there are four hospitals—The Queen’s Medical Center, The Queen’s Medical Center – West O‘ahu, Molokai General Hospital, and North Hawai‘i Community Hospital—and  seven health care centers in Hawai‘i Kai, Hilo, two in Honolulu, Kapolei, Kaua‘i and Kona. I will refer to the corporation by its original name, the Queen’s Hospital.

Hawaiian subjects of aboriginal blood, both pure and part, are protected persons whose rights during the U.S. occupation are protected under the Geneva Convention. Council member Ruggles sees that it is also her duty as a whistle blower and agent for the United States to ensure that their rights are respected and enforced. According to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, “Today, Native Hawaiians are perhaps the single racial group with the highest health risk in the State of Hawai‘i. This risk stems from high economic and cultural stress, lifestyle and risk behaviors, and late or lack of access to health care.” The ‘lack of access to health care’ is what troubles Council member Ruggles knowing that the Queen’s Hospital was specifically established, under Hawaiian Kingdom law, to provide for their health care, free of charge.

According to the International Committee of the Red Cross Commentaries, Article 47 of the Geneva Convention means that “changes made in the internal organization of the State must not lead to protected persons being deprived of the rights and safeguards provided them. Consequently it must be possible for the Convention to be applied to them in its entirety, even if the Occupying Power has introduced changes in the institutions or government of the occupied territory.” Furthermore, under the provisions of Article 50 of the GCIV regarding preferential measures for children’s medical care, in this case with the Queen’s Hospital, the occupying State “who occupied the whole or part of a territory where such measures are in force, cannot on any pretext abrogate them or place obstacles in the way of their application. This rule applies not only to preferential measures prescribed in the Convention but to any other measures of the same nature taken by the occupied State.”

Council member Ruggles stated that the changes to the charter since 1909 violate the Hague and Geneva Conventions. In light of these violations, she called upon the Chief Executive Office of the Queen’s Health System, Mr. Art Ushijima, and the “Board of Trustees to comply with the 1859 Charter and to admit aboriginal Hawaiians, as that term was understood under Kingdom law, for medical care free of charge. Failure to do so [would] appear to constitute to constitute war crimes under Article 47 and 50 of the [Geneva Convention, IV].”

Council member Ruggles alerted Mr. Ushijima to the fact that there “seems to be a direct nexus of deaths of aboriginal Hawaiians as ‘the single racial group with the highest health risk in the State of Hawai‘i [that] stems from…late or lack of access to health care’ to the crime of genocide as defined by the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. The Genocide Convention was also ratified by the United States Senate, and, like the Hague and Geneva Conventions, are a part of United States federal law.

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#WarCrimesHawaii

Big Island Video News (BIVN): Jen Ruggles Holds Community Meeting On War Crimes

KEA‘AU, Hawaiʻi – Hawaii County Councilmember Jen Ruggles explained her decision to stop legislating in a packed town hall on Monday night.

(BIVN)– A community meeting organized by Puna councilwoman Jen Ruggles to explain her ongoing absence from council drew a standing room-only crowd to the Keaʻau Community Center on Monday night.

Ruggles declared on August 21 “that she had come to understand that she may be in violation of her oath of office to uphold the U.S. Constitution and may be incurring criminal liability under both U.S. federal law and international law,” a media release stated. “Through her attorney, Stephen Laudig, she formally requested the County Office of Corporation Counsel provide her a proper legal opinion.”

Laudig was present at the meeting, as was Dr. David Keanu Sai, a scholar and expert in international law. Sai has also served as the lead agent for the Hawaiian Kingdom in international arbitration proceedings before the Permanent Court of Arbitration at the Hague, Netherlands.

Using a power point presentation projected onto the community center wall, Ruggles walked constituents through her understanding of the Hawaiian Kingdom as a state in continuity that is under a “strange form of occupation” by the United States. Ruggles shared letters she received that prompted her to make her decision, and took questions from the audience.

In an earlier media release, Ruggles said she intended “to educate her constituents on their rights as protected persons under U.S. and international law, and share what work she has started to continue to represent and advocate on behalf of her district.”

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