(c) October 26, 2014 by
Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.
NOTE: The book is offered for sale on amazon.com, at
My book review is posted there, entitled "Hate-America professor abandons scholarship for propaganda to rip 50th star off Old Glory." The review has its own URL
Hate-America professor abandons scholarship for propaganda to rip 50th star off Old Glory
This book is intended to appeal to people on the political left, who often seem to feel that it's important to analyze an author's background to "deconstruct" what he says; i.e., to understand and discredit his background and motives. Therefore I'll provide some information about Francis Boyle's political activities in Hawaii and compare him with other like-minded "social justice" American radicals who have also discussed Hawaii. But since I'm a scholar and not a leftist, I will give first priority to describe facts about law and history, and to show Boyle's lack of intellectual integrity in his failure to account for them. Boyle behaves as a partisan Hawaiian sovereignty activist, not as a professor or scholar presenting facts in a fair and balanced manner. Boyle is a jihadist with the Hawaiian sovereignty movement, hoping to curry favor with his Hawaiian activist buddies, and using Hawaii as a platform to acquire greater fame among the radical leftwing Caucasian Americans on the mainland who are anti-Caucasian and anti-American.
Boyle presents an entirely one-sided narrative that the Hawaiian revolution of 1893 was illegal, that the annexation of Hawaii in 1898 was illegal, etc. In his capacity as a professor of international law he should be presenting all sides of the issues and laying out the evidence for each side. But instead of a scholarly analysis, Boyle behaves like a lawyer for a losing client, citing facts and ignoring the law whenever the law is against him, citing the law and ignoring the facts whenever the facts are against him, and pounding his fist on the table whenever the facts and the law are both against him (which is most of the time).
The title of this book is "Restoring the Kingdom of Hawaii: The Kanaka Maoli Route to Independence", published September 1, 2014. But in many ways, this "new" book is merely a rehash of several previous items by Francis Boyle over a span of more than two decades. He is a professor after all, so he's probably accustomed to reusing the same lecture notes year after year while getting paid repeatedly for the same work.
The apology resolution -- a U.S. apology to ethnic Hawaiians (but not to other ethnic groups who were also subjects of the Hawaiian Kingdom) for sending in peacekeepers at the time of the Hawaiian revolution of 1893 -- was passed by Congress and signed by President Clinton in October and November 1993. Boyle seized the opportunity to promote his own standing among anti-American radicals by promptly flying to Hawaii. On December 28, 1993 he gave a public lecture sponsored by the State of Hawaii's "Hawaiian Sovereignty Advisory Commission" entitled "The Restoration of the Independent Nation State of Hawaii Under International Law" touting the apology resolution as a confession of a crime by the U.S. that warrants restoration of Hawaii's independence. A slightly revised version with the same title was published in the St. Thomas Law Review, Summer 1995. From time to time the State of Hawaii Office of Hawaiian Affairs has tried to persuade Hawaiian independence activists to acquiesce in OHA's proposal to create a Hawaiian tribe under the U.S. Department of Interior. That's why OHA occasionally gives the appearance of showing respect to independence activists by paying for them to hold consultation sessions with OHA, or by paying for expert speakers to give public lectures reflecting their views. Thus Francis Boyle was paid by OHA to give a lecture on several islands in December 2004 in support of Hawaii's right to independent nationhood. Of course Boyle's previous speech in 1993, as published in the 1995 law review article, was the core ingredient in his 2004 speeches to a new generation of activists. And now we have Boyle's work yet again in this book a decade later -- old wine in a new bottle for yet another new generation of Hawaiian activists.
The Hawaiian revolution that overthrew the monarchy happened on January 17, 1893, at a time when Republican Benjamin Harrison was President but when everyone knew that Democrat Grover Cleveland had already been elected to succeed him. Cleveland did not take office until March 4, which was normal procedure back then. Queen Lili'uokalani, a personal friend of Grover Cleveland, tried to give the impression that she was surrendering to the U.S., where the incoming President Cleveland would help her, rather than to the revolutionary Provisional Government which had actually overthrown her. Her surrender was worded as a letter of protest claiming she was surrendering only temporarily (absurd) and surrendering to the U.S. (false) until such time as the U.S. would undo the revolution and restore her to the throne. She sent her messenger, bearing her letter of surrender, to the headquarters of the Provisional Government on January 17 at the Government Building across the street from the Palace, which the Provisional Government had taken over. By sending her surrender letter to the Provisional Government at the government building, and not to U.S. representative Stevens, she showed that she knew it was the Provisional Government to whom she must surrender. The U.S. was not in control, and had no authority or power to undo the revolution or restore her to the throne. Neither the U.S. nor the Provisional Government had agreed to Lili'uokalani's assertion that she was surrendering to the U.S., and they had not agreed to her assertion that her surrender was only temporary nor to her assertion that the U.S. would investigate and mediate and restore her to the throne -- her assertion of those things was merely her own wishful thinking and a clever political ploy. All the foreign nations which had local consulates in Honolulu, including the U.S., granted de facto recognition to the Provisional government during the first two days after the revolution (their letters were promptly published in the Honolulu daily newspaper and later in the Morgan Report now available on the internet). There is no evidence that any of them were aware of her assertions or would have taken them seriously. She did not take her own assertions seriously enough to bother communicating them to anyone who could have relied on them to withhold de facto recognition from the Provisional Government during the next couple of days.
Francis Boyle does not discuss these historical topics or points of international law. He merely notes the Queen's protest and her allegedly temporary ceding of authority allegedly to the U.S. -- he treats them as facts rather than wishful thinking.
The revolutionary Provisional Government of Hawaii immediately sent a Treaty of Annexation to the U.S. which President Harrison promptly forwarded to the Senate for ratification. But Congress was not in a mood to deal with annexation because they knew Grover Cleveland would shortly become President.
Less than a week after becoming President, Grover Cleveland withdrew the Treaty of Annexation from the Senate and appointed a hatchet man, James Blount, to be "Minister Plenipotentiary with paramount powers" and sent him to Hawaii under secret orders to investigate the revolution, write a report blaming the U.S. for what happened, and destabilize the Provisional Government. Blount's appointment was never submitted to the Senate for confirmation. Cleveland's bestowal of "paramount powers" upon Blount was Cleveland's illegal way to give Blount the appearance of authority over the already long-serving U.S. Minister Plenipotentiary John Stevens who had been appointed by President Harrison and had been properly confirmed by the Senate. Boyle does not discuss the illegality of what Cleveland did, nor the lack of legitimacy for Blount's exercising of authority in Honolulu.
During the Spring and early Summer Blount stayed in the royalist hotel next door to Iolani Palace and conducted private interviews in secret, with only one secretary taking notes, to "investigate" what had happened during the revolution. None of the "testimony" was under oath. He got only one side of the story because nearly all the people he interviewed were royalists. Blount wrote his report, sailed back to America, and delivered it to President Cleveland who kept it secret for several months, waiting to use it as a political weapon with Congress in case he was unsuccessful in restoring Lili'uokalani through diplomatic and military pressure.
Meanwhile Albert Willis was appointed by President Cleveland and confirmed by the Senate to be the new U.S. Minister Plenipotentiary to Hawaii (no need for paramount powers). Throughout the remainder of 1893 Willis did not present his credentials formally to Hawaii President Sanford Dole, despite the fact that the U.S. government had already given official de facto recognition to the Provisional Government in January. Willis met secretly with Lili'uokalani on several occasions with a plan in mind to help her re-take the throne. Willis asked her whether she would agree to grant pardons to the revolutionaries who had overthrown her if the Provisional Government would agree to step down. In at least two meetings with Willis, Lili'uokalani refused to grant amnesty and indeed said she would behead the revolutionaries. But at the last minute she sent a message to the ship ready to set sail to America with her refusal, saying she had changed her mind and would agree to grant amnesty if Willis could persuade Dole to step down. Meantime Dole had no idea what was happening, and had not been told of Willis' proposal. In December 1893, having heard rumors, Dole sent a letter to Willis demanding to know what was going on. Willis' letter of reply ORDERED Dole to step down. Dole's 17-page response was a blistering "hell no." Dole wrote to Willis that Hawaii would love to be annexed to the U.S., but that so long as Hawaii remained an independent nation Cleveland should stop interfering in Hawaii's internal affairs.
At the same time, the U.S. Navy was conducting gunboat diplomacy trying to intimidate the Provisional Government into resigning. Two U.S. warships conducted "training exercises" within sight of the Government Building for a period of several weeks, firing guns and cannons, shooting rockets, and staging mock invasions. The crisis was so frightening that the Japanese warship Naniwa was prepared to land Japanese military men to protect the lives and property of Japanese in Honolulu. Readers can find out what happened by searching on the internet for Hawaii Black Week, and by reading the 2011 book "American Gibraltar" by diplomat and historian William M. Morgan, Ph.D. (There's a detailed book review on the internet) Francis Boyle does not discuss the fact that Willis' failure to present his credentials to the Provisional Government to which the U.S. had given de facto recognition, and conducting secret negotiations with the ex-queen, and the gunboat diplomacy of Hawaii Black Week, were violations of international law. Boyle to this day has probably not read "Pacific Gibraltar", and probably never heard about Black Week, because his interest is not to study the facts but to spew propaganda.
Having failed to overthrow Hawaii's provisional government, President Cleveland sent Blount's report to Congress along with Cleveland's own message blaming the Hawaiian revolution on the U.S. and referring the matter to Congress to decide what to do. The clear implication was that Cleveland was seeking Congressional authority to invade Hawaii and restore Lili'uokalani to the throne. The U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs held hearings for a month, open to the public, taking testimony under oath and with severe cross-examination of witnesses by Senators favorable to Cleveland's views. Both former Minister Stevens and former Minister Blount testified, along with numerous Navy officers and men who had served as peacekeepers in Hawaii a year previously. The Senate majority was Democrat, the same as President Cleveland; although many Democrats were expansionists while Cleveland was an isolationist. Toward the end of February 1894 the committee, chaired by Democrat Senator James Morgan, published the 808-page "Morgan Report" consisting of transcripts of all the testimony and including scholarly essays on Hawaii's history, economy, and strategic position in the Pacific. Large portions of the testimony and scholarly essays were written by native-born subjects who had served as government officials of the Hawaiian Kingdom. The report included testimony from people who had spoken to Blount in Honolulu, who stated under oath that what they had said to Blount had been falsely reported by Blount in the Blount Report. The Morgan Report repudiated the Blount Report, making clear that the U.S. peacekeepers did not participate in the Hawaiian revolution, did not give ammunition or supplies or food to them, did not patrol the streets and mostly remained in barracks because the revolutionaries were able to maintain order and protect lives and property.
Francis Boyle does not mention Willis' efforts to destabilize the Provisional Government, nor the gunboat diplomacy of Hawaii Black Week, nor how the Morgan Report discredits and repudiates the Blount Report. He does not mention that the Morgan Report is now available on the internet where photographs of all 808 pages are accompanied by digitized searchable plain-text transcripts.
Boyle also avoids discussing the most important evidence that the revolution of 1893 was deemed legitimate under international law by the family of nations, and therefore the Republic had the right under international law to offer a Treaty of Annexation to the United States in 1897, which the U.S. accepted in 1898. In 2008, when presented with proof of international recognition of the Republic, Boyle behaved like a schoolyard bully instead of a scholar. Boyle refused to discuss the evidence and its meaning in a scholarly manner. He simply dismissed the evidence by making scurrilous ad hominem attacks against the leaders of the Republic. Here's the evidence that Boyle refused to examine, and a quote of Boyle's brief but vicious ad hominem refusal to consider it.
In July 1894 a Hawaiian Constitutional Convention finished its work (there were at least five native Hawaiians among the delegates). The temporary revolutionary Provisional Government, which had only tentative (i.e., de facto) recognition from local consuls of foreign governments, published the new Constitution thereby formally establishing the permanent Republic of Hawaii. A full-blooded native Hawaiian John Kaulukou, formerly a prominent royalist, was elected as Speaker of the House of Representatives. President Sanford Dole sent copies of the Constitution to the local consuls, asking them to request the head of state of their home nations for full-fledged permanent diplomatic recognition (i.e., de jure). During the next several months letters were received by President Dole granting the Republic recognition as the lawful, rightful successor to the Kingdom. The letters were personally signed by Emperors, Kings, Queens, and Presidents of at least 19 nations on 4 continents in 11 languages. Photos of those letters, taken in the archives of the State of Hawaii, were placed on the internet in March 2008. To see them put into Google: letters recognize republic hawaii. Thus the Republic of Hawaii was internationally recognized by the family of nations as the legitimate successor government to the Kingdom.
In July 2008 I, Ken Conklin, sent an email to Professor Boyle informing him that photos of the letters were now available on the internet. My email provided the URL for the photos. It said, in part:
"As an individual, you have every right to be a partisan in favor of race-based political sovereignty for ethnic Hawaiians. However, as a Professor of International Law, you have a scholarly responsibility to acknowledge factual evidence and to re-assess your views based on evidence you were previously unaware of. ... As you know, the Kingdom of Hawaii was a member of the family of nations because of the fact that it was recognized de jure by other nations. Following the revolution of 1893, the permanent successor government, the Republic of Hawaii, was recognized by the same nations who had previously recognized the Kingdom. Under international law, when a revolution takes place, recognition of the successor government replaces and makes moot the recognition previously granted to the predecessor government. If you believe the annexation of Hawaii to the United States was not valid (because it was done by joint resolution), then the legitimate government of Hawaii would remain the Republic, not the Kingdom. ... It's time for you to acknowledge that the Kingdom of Hawaii was no longer recognized as the legitimate government following the revolution of 1893, and was replaced by the Republic government that was internationally recognized."
The entire unedited reply email, dated July 9, 2008, was as follows:
"Go read the U.S. Congress's Apology Resolution, which the Supreme Court of Hawaii has just ruled is binding out there in Hawaii. The self-styled "Republic of Hawaii" was nothing more than a racist gang of pirates, cutthroats, thieves and criminals: Ex injuria non oritur ius -- Right does not arise from injury.
Francis A. Boyle
Professor of International Law"
Note that Professor Boyle gave no indication that he had even bothered to look at the photos. And he did not cite any "international laws" to contradict the validity of the documents or their significance in establishing formal diplomatic recognition of the Republic by at least 19 nations. Instead of discussing the facts or the laws, he pounded his fist on the table like a bully. He told me to go read the apology resolution, as though I was not already familiar with it. He cited a decision by the Hawaii Supreme Court which, he said, ruled that the apology resolution is binding in Hawaii. Unfortunately for Boyle, he didn't know that the U.S. Supreme Court would soon overrule the Hawaii Supreme Court by a unanimous vote of 9-0, ruling that the apology resolution is merely a resolution of sentiment whose historical preambles have no force of law. Part of his bullying was to cite a Latin phrase that right does not arise from injury. But it is well established in international law that revolution or war are legitimate ways to put an end to a nation's government and establish a successor government, even if some people get injured in the process. Although I did not reply to Boyle's email, my reply would have been to point to the 19 letters while hurling back in his arrogant face another Latin phrase lawyers are fond of: Res Ipsa Loquitur -- the thing speaks for itself. Boyle's absurd reply to me was widely circulated on the internet among the sovereignty activists, who eagerly embraced it as though it was decisive evidence that the Republic was illegitimate.
Boyle and his Hawaiian sovereignty buddies like to say that there is no Treaty of Annexation. The main reason they give is that the U.S. ratified it by means of a joint resolution instead of by a 2/3 vote of the Senate. They say that a joint resolution is merely an internal or municipal law of the U.S. which lacks the power to reach out beyond the borders of the U.S. to grab a foreign nation. But what they never discuss is the fact that as a sovereign nation, the U.S. has a right to decide for itself what method it will use to make any decision, including the decision to confirm and accept a treaty.
The U.S. did not reach out and grab Hawaii against its will. Hawaii took the first step. Both in 1893 and again in 1897, it was Hawaii which offered a Treaty of Annexation. In 1897 the U.S. Senate floor leaders sponsoring ratification of the Treaty were worried that if it came to a vote they might be one or two votes short, so they never put it on the official calendar for a vote. However, by summer 1898 things had changed. Sponsors of the Treaty decided to use a joint resolution as the method for ratifying the Treaty, as had been done regarding the Treaty of Annexation of the Republic of Texas half a century earlier. The vote was 42-21 in the Senate; 209-91 in the House; and President McKinley signed it. Senators who opposed it could have appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court asserting joint resolution is an unconstitutional method for ratifying a treaty, but they never did so. Since then courts have repeatedly upheld the Treaty of Annexation when they cite it as the authority for asserting U.S. law in Hawaii. To see full text of the Treaty of Annexation, and the history of how it was offered and accepted including the resolutions passed by the Hawaii legislature and the U.S. Congress: put into Google the following phrase of four words: treaty annexation hawaii text. Boyle does not discuss the fact that under international law the U.S. has a right to choose for itself what method it will use to ratify a treaty offered by another nation.
Francis Boyle is among a lower ranking group of Caucasian American leftwing Marxist academic activists using their highly-paid tenured faculty positions to make a career out of hating America, hating Caucasians, hating Israel, etc. while supporting social-justice victimhood claims of Native Americans, African-Americans, and Palestinians. Top-ranked radicals focus almost entirely on highly visible targets. Low-ranked radicals need less well known targets, like Hawaii, where they can hope to get lots of attention because their more famous competitors are less active.
The top flight group includes truly famous luminaries like Richard Falk and Howard Zinn. Falk and Zinn have both written at least a little about alleged oppression of ethnic Hawaiians by the U.S.; but Indians, Blacks, and Palestinians always grabbed far more of their attention.
Ward Churchill, the infamous fake Cherokee disgraced former professor from Boulder Colorado, belongs in a second echelon of Caucasian-Americans who hate Caucasians and America and Israel. Like Avis in relation to Hertz, Churchill is in second place below Falk and Zinn, and therefore he tries harder. One way to try harder is to get involved in the political backwater of far-away Hawaii. Churchill actually spent time in Hawaii as a judge and Rapporteur on Kekuni Blaisdell's Kanaka Maoli Tribunal Komike: People's International Tribunal Hawai'i, August 12-21, 1993. The Hawaii tribunal was Blaisdell's copycat of the October 1992 International Tribunal of Indigenous Peoples and Oppressed Nationalities in the United States of America, conducted in San Francisco.
In February 2005 Churchill gave a public lecture at the University of Hawaii by invitation of local ethnic Hawaiian activist Haunani-Kay Trask (like Churchill, a Marxist follower of Malcolm X). Churchill's lecture was timed at the height of the controversy over Churchill's comments about 9/11 that the 3,000 victims at the World Trade Center (including secretaries and janitors) deserved to die because they were agents of American imperialism. Trask also co-edited the re-release in 2005 of Churchill's book "Since Predator Came." Each hand was washing the other for more than a decade. Trask retired a couple years ago; Churchill has lost all credibility; and neither is getting attention anymore.
Francis Boyle is in a third echelon lower than Falk, Zinn and Churchill; much less famous but aspiring to their level of infamy. Supporting demands for Hawaiian independence is a way for a third-rater to make a big splash in a small pond simply because the really big fish rarely swim here. While Churchill used Trask as his Hawaiian connection for more than a decade, Francis Boyle used Dennis "Bumpy" Kanehele and David Keanu Sai as his own Hawaiian connections during the same period of time and continuing to now. So it's interesting that Boyle, perhaps jealous of Churchill, does not refer to Churchill in the index to his book, and mentions the Trask sisters only briefly. Haunani-Kay Trask's sister Mililani Trask was Governor of Ka Lahui, the largest Hawaiian sovereignty group in the 1990s with allegedly more than 20,000 members; yet Boyle, who was already very active in Hawaii in the 1990s, barely mentions either of the Trask sisters or Ka Lahui. Just as there are numerous Hawaiian sovereignty groups all competing against each other for prominence among ethnic Hawaiians and their Caucasian and Asian fellow-travelers, and clamoring for media attention, so the Caucasian radicals from the mainland hook up with different Hawaiian groups and barely acknowledge each other's efforts.
In 1996 Ward Churchill's book "From a Native Son: Selected Essays in Indigenism" was published. [Note the similarity of the title to Haunani-Kay Trask's book "From a Native Daughter] Churchill desperately wanted to be a "Native son"; i.e., an American Indian or "indigenous" person in order to have credibility in speaking on Indian matters and to be able to use affirmative action to get a position as tenured professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder. So Churchill claimed to be a Cherokee. When he became a focus of national attention because of outrage over his comments about 9/11, investigative reporters made inquiries and discovered he had no Cherokee blood. He retreated to claiming he was an "honorary member" of one of the Cherokee tribes, but that tribe disavowed his claim. Churchill was discredited as merely a wannabe Indian. The university was massively embarrassed not only because he was an academic fraud who had no advanced degree and had committed plagiarism, but also because they had given him a tenured faculty position based in large measure on his claim to be Cherokee, even though race is neither necessary nor sufficient to prove that someone has knowledge in an academic discipline.
Francis Boyle has worked closely with ethnic Hawaiian activist Dennis "Bumpy" Kanahele. Bumpy gave himself the name "Pu'uhonua" which is a Hawaiian word for either a person or a place which provides refuge. Indeed, Bumpy was convicted of a felony of harboring a federal fugitive at his cult compound in Waimanalo, near where he staged a multi-day shutdown of a highway and thereby extorted a lease from the state government for land for his "sovereign Nation of Hawaii." Boyle helped Bumpy create a Constitution for Bumpy's "nation", assuring Bumpy that it's OK under international law to require that the head of the nation, and all judges, and all members of special leadership councils, and a guaranteed majority of the legislature, must be racially Hawaiian. If Ward Churchill was a wannabe Cherokee, Francis Boyle is a wannabe Hawaiian. That's why Boyle felt deeply honored to be "adopted" by Bumpy Kanahele and is proud to display in the book both sides of his "official" membership card as "Hanai [adopted] Hawaiian Kingdom Citizen" dated December 29, 1993, the day after Boyle's public lecture sponsored by the "Hawaiian Sovereignty Advisory Commission". It's no coincidence that in that same year, 1993, he also was given honorary citizenship in Bosnia-Herzgovina where he was advisor to the Bosnian president at the time of the ethnic cleansing wars. He also served as legal advisor to the Palestine Liberation Organization from 1991 to 1993. Busy fellow! A true citizen of the world! But always in service to the most radical political movements, and craving validation from them to feed his enormous ego.
Francis Boyle has also worked closely with sovereignty activist David Keanu Sai. In August 1998 Sai filed a complaint with the U.S. Supreme Court, using Boyle as his pro bono attorney, demanding that the Court issue a decree recognizing Hawaii as an independent nation and ordering the U.S. to withdraw. The Court refused to consider it. In December 1999 Sai was convicted of a felony in the Perfect Title scam, although Boyle was not involved. Nevertheless it's interesting that both of the Hawaiian sovereignty activists with whom Boyle has worked closely, Bumpy Kanahele and Keanu Sai, are convicted felons.
Boyle's new book was published by Clarity Press, in Atlanta Georgia. Since I had never heard of Clarity Press, I searched for its homepage on the internet. It has a fairly short list of titles and authors, which are notable for their far-left, anti-America viewpoint. Clarity has published 71 titles, and Boyle is their most prolific author with eleven of them. Other Clarity authors are notable leftwingers including Cynthia McKinney. Other titles are anti-America and anti-Israel such as "Zionism, Militarism, and the Decline of U.S. Power", "War Crimes in Gaza and the Zionist Fifth Column in America", "The Piracy of America", etc.
Boyle's support for Hawaiian independence is part of his hate-America campaign. The following quote comes from the Wikipedia biography of Francis Boyle, where the sources are documented.
In October 1992 Boyle participated in the International Tribunal of Indigenous Peoples and Oppressed Nationalities in the United States of America that convened in San Francisco. Boyle, acting as a "Special Prosecutor," petitioned the Tribunal to issue the following:
"An Order proscribing the Federal Government of the United States of America as an International Criminal Conspiracy and a Criminal organization under the Nuremberg Charter, Judgment, and Principles;" and
"an Order dissolving the Federal Government of the United States of America as a legal and political entity."
In the conclusion of a 37-point legal brief, Boyle proclaimed that:
"[the Federal Government of the United States] is hostis humani generis: The enemy of all humankind! For the good of all humanity, this Tribunal must condemn and repudiate the Federal Government of the United States of America and its grotesque vision of a New World Order that is constructed upon warfare, bloodshed, violence, criminality, genocide, racism, colonialism, apartheid, massive violations of fundamental human rights, and the denial of the international legal right of self-determination to the Indigenous Peoples and Peoples of Color living in North America and elsewhere around the world."
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