by Christine Gralow
Note: I am republishing this article, originally published on May 19, 2018, because there has been renewed interest from the Hawaiian community in this U.N. letter. Also see recent news on David Keanu Sai from Ian Lind's blog. The authenticity of the deZayas letter stands, despite Sai's recent legal conflicts. -CG
The Hawaiian Kingdom Blog released a letter today from United Nations Special Rapporteur Alfred deZayas regarding his views on the legal governmental status of Hawai'i.
In the letter, dated February 18, 2018, deZayas wrote, "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."
DeZayas addressed this letter to Hawai'i First Circuit Court Judges Gary Chang and Jeannette Castagnetti. Chang presides over Hawai'i's Land and Tax Appeal Court. Castagnetti presided over the contentious Nelson v. Hawaiian Homes Commission case, in which she ordered the Hawai'i State Legislature to pay the Dept. of Hawaiian Home Lands $28 million in 2016.
"To call this (U.N.) document 'remarkable' is an understatement," said David Keanu Sai.
Sai, who holds a Ph.D. in political science from University of Hawai'i, Manoa, has led several international complaints regarding the legal status of the Hawaiian Kingdom. He explained in an email to Meanwhile in Hawai'i that his complaints aimed to expose "the continued existence of the Hawaiian Kingdom as an independent and sovereign State."
Sai said a relative of Routh Bolomet, "a Hawaiian-Swiss citizen," alerted him last week to deZayas' letter.
In his letter, deZayas referred to his review of a 2017 complaint from Bolomet to the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
Bolomet complained of "historical and ongoing plundering of the Hawaiians' lands, particularly of those heirs and descendants with land titles that originate from the distributions of lands under the authority of the Hawaiian Kingdom".
DeZayas served as the U.N. Human Rights Council's Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order from May 2012 through April 2018. He wrote the letter to Judges Chang and Castagnetti while serving in that position. He previously served as Secretary of the U.N. Human Rights Committee and as Senior Lawyer with the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights. He is a Cuban-born U.S. citizen with a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He currently teaches at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Law.
Mahalo to Hawaiian Kingdom Blog for drawing public attention to this U.N. document.
By Christine Gralow
By popular demand on Twitter, below is the downloadable document leaked by a former Tulsi Gabbard presidential campaign volunteer, which contains a list of individuals aggressively targeted (and in some cases harassed and defamed) online by Gabbard campaigners. The list was created and disseminated to campaign volunteers by Scott Gahres (aka Garris), a long-time Gabbard social media advisor.
Gahres disseminated this "Twitter Operatives" Excel spreadsheet in the private "Team Tulsi Online Volunteers" group on Facebook, which currently has about 1,000 members. The official Gabbard presidential campaign refers supporters directly to this Facebook group when they sign up to volunteer.
When questioned by Meanwhile in Hawai'i and other outlets, Gabbard's press team tried to distance her from Gahres, stating he is just a volunteer. But Gahres' direct ties to Gabbard are clear in the Facebook group, as well as in his campaign email signature and official Gabbard campaign email address. Gahres, a Hawai'i resident, has in fact done social media work for Gabbard for years on Facebook, Twitter, and Medium. A large majority of people currently working for Gabbard's campaign are either unpaid workers or freelancers. (See 4-24-19 Daily Beast article.)
In the Facebook group, Gahres has hosted regular "Twitter strategy" conference calls and has instructed volunteers to target specific Twitter accounts that have posted information unflattering to Gabbard.
Gahres' instructions to Gabbard's online campaign volunteers include blocking accounts on the list, "then reply(ing) so they cannot reply to you." Gahres also instructed campaign volunteers to create multiple accounts and "use one account to talk to other account and create hype and conversation."
Gahres' apparent social media hit list includes journalists, LGBTQ rights activists, Syrian democracy activists, Indian citizens critical of Gabbard's ties to Modi, and Native Hawaiian leaders. Topping the list is Intercept reporter Mehdi Hasan, who has been critical of Gabbard and currently has over 647,000 followers on Twitter. At least six accounts on Gahres' target list are currently suspended by Twitter, including @riotwomennn and @bravenakblog.
The "Twitter Operatives" spreadsheet and information from the closed Facebook group were leaked to Meanwhile in Hawai'i by a former campaign volunteer who wishes not to be named for fear of retaliation.
Disclosure: Christine Gralow is on the #TulsiGabbardEnemyList.