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ARCHIVES
ARCHIVED MESSAGE BOARD 2000  (section 1)

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Tebanimarawa
tstanley@clunet.edu
California
USA
20 May 2000

Mauri Paulo!

I did not reply to everything you say, I guess.
I have been very frustrated by what I hear as I was growing up.
I do know that I have the right to my opinions and live the
way I think will make me happy.

I am not trying to just sit back and accept the wrong doings but
there is nothing that will change my opinions right now.
Baba ao Mama did the best they could to bring me up they way they think
is best. They tried not to corrupt our thoughts with their own anger and
hatred against our oppressors. That is for me to decide if I will hate them for ever. What is done is done. Yes, we lost our language, I do believe I used to have one because Baba to me so and i Believe him. I do not hate the British, Australians or New Zealanders because Baba told
the people to hate are gone - dead. What they did was terrible
but he said they did it to help their own people (if not their
personal cause). And no we should not forget what 'they' did.

I am glad that you point out my weakness in thinking of my people. The truth is I am paranoid and I believe that others will just try to exploit Banaba one way or another. I have seen enough to think that it will not stop.
I will tell you what I think, many (maybe some) think that no one can help because those who try end up stealing from the people - US, the Banabans. Yes, we elect (I did not though because I was too young to) leaders to get help, but they fail. An old man told me it seems that "WE are easily swayed and fooled" I do not think so but that is what he thinks.
You say will our 'own' dig our backyard for the riches? I say yes, that has happened. Our own leaders seem to use Banaban money to benefit themselves.

Baba said ones that "tekeraoia kain Banaba bon the ara ae Rotan" which he heard from someone else. How true this is? I do not know. I believe though that one of the Rotans did well during his term as counsellor.> from what I see happening, is that the other leaders shot our chances of comfort and right. Again that is what I think.

What I want to know from you is what I should do. It is not quite clear what you think is best for me to do to help my people. I thought that I am doing the best I can right now. I am a student and I have written essays. I was invited to read these out in class. Not only that but I did a presentation to my school on my culture, language Kiribati but I told them that this is what I grew up with but not Banaban.
I also did a dance and demonstrates to the best of my ability the difference in Banaban, Kiribati and Hawaiian dances. The presentation was received well. During the discussion that follows, I explained why the Banaban language was lost and forgotten. I also described from what I learn the difference between the Kiribati and Banaban cultures. No, I did not sit back and do nothing, I act to the best of my ability.

You mentioned my children and not wanting to continue our culture. I am truly blessed with my children. Although their father is white, they are all BROWN. Many people have commented on how beautiful my kids are and they are right. They are truly Banabans, their complexions say this. You see I have done something for my people and am still trying to do more for them.

Are you as superstitious as I am? If you are then help me.

TO ALL WHO ARE READING THIS, HELP US IF YOU CAN.

My spouse and I are trying to find 'RINTABANOUIA ARA BAKATIBU'. we were asked to locate the 'skulls' that were removed by a Dr. Cool, I believe. Unfortunately, no other names was given. He is an oceanographer working in Kiribati, went to Banaba and took the 'skulls' to the USA for display in a museum. The problem we face in our search is the time, date and name. We cannot perform miracles, but we will try our best.

If you know a Dr. Cool (is name accurate?) or if a friend of yours knows him, let us know.

Why look for these skull bones? According to the 'medium' who communicate with our ancestors, peace and prosperity will return to the land ones 'they' (ancestors) are resting happily at home. Do you think this is hocus pocus? Maybe, but I will not convince anyone of what I believe. Please, believe what you must, but leave me to my believes and to do what I must do. I ask for your help if you can and willing
Peace


Tebanimarawa
tstanley@clunet.edu
California
USA
20 May 2000

Mauri!

I like what I see on this page, I think it is great.
I am a student at the moment, but hopefully I can help in anyway. Re-building Banaba is a wonderful idea, but we need (I certainly do) to publicize what the people on the island need right now that might make them more comfortable in any way.

I would like to know the following: as of today
- how many people are on the island
- is there a clinic (hospital)
- is there school for the young ones (even a tiny one?)
(do they need reading books, school materials - writing stuff)
- do they need clothing (or is it too hot for that)
- how many boats deliver goods to Banaba (how often)
- how safe is it for me to send stuff for friends and family
(will the package opened by customs)
- how can I communicate (mail) will they receive
- how can I get to Banaba
- what is the housing condition like
- are the water holes still operational (do they rely solely on
that which is brought to the island)

I think that people who stumble across this site and are aware
of what the people on Banaba need they might make an effort to
help out (then again I may be wrong). But if I can help from
here I will do my best.

Peace


Stacey King
banaban@ion.com.au
Gold Coast
Australia
19 May 2000

With all the discussion and debate regarding the re-mining of Banaba I thought it was an appropriate tine to republish an article that appeared in Issues 15 & 16 of the 'Banaba/Ocean Island News' in 1995, regarding the rehabilitation of Christmas Island,Indian Ocean.

http://www.ion.com.au/~banaban/christmas.htm

Christmas Island was the third island that came under the control of the British Phosphate Commission. The others were Banaba and Nauru. Christmas Island, like Nauru ended up under Australian mandate after World War 2, while Banaba remained under the control of the British Government. Today Christmas Island is classified as an Australian External Territory and therefore comes still under Australian Government control.

What is so interesting about this story is the sobering fact that regardless of all the rhetoric over the years of WHY IT IS NOT WORTH REHABILITATING BANABA, here is a story of how it is possible!

The sad thing about this story is the fact that the rehabilitation of Christmas Island has come about over the threatened extinction of the Abbott's Bobby bird. There were no indigenous people living on Christmas Island.

Here we are in the year 2000 and holding discussions on stepping back a hundred years to destroy the last 150 acres of Banaba. There are no plans for rehabilitation, only the threatened extinction of an indigenous people. Maybe if the Banaban were birds they would count more on the world scale of priorities.

I urge all fair minded, descent caring people to help the Banabans to save what they hold most dear - their HOMELAND. Make a difference and let your thoughts be known to the parties involved in one of the greatest environmental disasters of the last century. Over the next few days we plan on publishing the email addresses and fax numbers of those Governments and organisations that are responsible.

We ask you to contact them directly and urge for the REHABILITATION not the DESTRUCTION of Banaba.

We now live in a truly Global world. Now we can bring this story and the facts of what is happening to the rest of the world. We can't sit back any longer and watch history repeat itself. After all our posterings over the past wrongs of the Colonial Governments during the last 100 years it is about to begin again. Now it is up to all of us to try and do something, for not only the sake of ALL Banabans, but the planet as a whole.
To all those who are aware of the damage super-phosphate has caused to our farms, reefs, and waterways over the years, please let people know that by using phosphate they not only damage their land, but they destroy the homeland of the Banaban people in the process.

I write this message as an Australian, who believes that our Government owes these people a great deal.

Tebanimarawa
tstanley@clunet.edu
California
USA
19 May 2000

Mauri Paulo!

It seems that you caught on with my meaning - confusion. Yes, I do sound
confusing because that is exactly how I felt as I grew up.
I never quite sure which side to fall back to - claim and hold on to.
Growing up on Rabi is not clear cut which culture we were practicing.
At times my mom will say, "well, we do it this way but the Banabans do
it this way." It seems I was brought up in both cultures besides the Fijianess.
But then I am not so sure and I think others felt that way too.

You are right though, we should hold on to our uniqueness, but it is hard to
do when our parents are not even sure, or are they? I cannot help the fact
that I choose to be with my husband. However, it is neat that HE is encouraging
our children to speak the language, even though it is Kiribati.
this is so they could communicate with their grandparents. I am sure that
if we know more than six Banaban words we continue to speak it too.

I do think that being in the States, you in Japan, etc, is the best way to tell
others our culture. People noticed the different way i behave and when they ask
which culture... doesn't that help? If I am in Fiji then it is more difficult
for me to inform those that do not know ME clearly. And so I am glad about this
site. But really, I am helping to get others to know Banaba, though this way
Banaba does not get rebuild - right?

Well, at this age, no one will come home and dig my backyard,
because as you say it is a different age. Papa told me that they were
cheated out of their land, but isn't is because they were less
educated then we are now? It does not make me happy to hear that.
I do not know what you mean by ehtnic cleansing tough.

My kids do ask a lot about Banaba and why WE let the White dig
us out of our land completely. I told them all I know though.
I am glad that they ask. I do not know for sure where they will
want to reside in the future, but telling them about Banaba...
am providing them with options. I will not force them, nor will
choose for them. I only hope they will want to visit the land and
if they can, help rebuild.

If it is truly posible to get our indepedence then yes I will
be overjoyed. So keep writing because I know other people will
be reading and hopefully they might want to help too- who knows.

Tiabo ao ko aitau!

Peace


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo,com
Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture
Japan
18 May 2000

Dear Tebanimarawa,

Please for your information and for clarification sake I was just replying to the following (4) comments that you have stated in your in last message in this forum

1)We, Banabans, Fijians or Kiribati should focus on now and let go of the past (no matter how painful it is). I mean let go not forget. I do think of the past also, but what good will it do me now? Banaba is there and will not go anywhere, unless the waves wish to cover it up. At the moment we should concentrate on building not dwell in the destruction done long ago. It is good to know what happened and past it on for the generations to come (if you wish).


2)But talk about the service Banaba has done. It makes me glow to think that little Banaba has contributed to making big countries like Australia and New Zealand more fertile. I think of all the farms that have benefit from Banaba.
Now if Kiribati can benefit from Banaba then let it be. We certainly cannot change the past now and become independent (although it'll be neat).Maybe, we are meant to serve others through our soil. I think we should help others whenever we can. Oh, don't get me wrong. I will be thrilled to see
new developments taking place on Banaba. If Kiribati or any nation can help make Banaba more comfortable then it will be wonderful.

3) The best thing to do is try and work together and help one another, but not point fingers anymore. What happened in the past is truly sad and unfortunate, but we survive. True, many of us have different blood running through our veins but in our hearts we are truly free to become who we want to be. And nothing can anyone take that from us.


4) I say Keep the culture alive in what we do, but most of all with what we teach our kids. This is hard to do, I know. I have three young ones who find it hard to practice their culture here since all their friends consider such cultures as 'weird'. In time they will remember and cherish what happened to the land, hopefully with other means than just stories. My hope is that these stories will live forever.

Cheers


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo.com
Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture
Japan
18 May 2000

Kon na mauri Tebanimarawa and once again thanks for your concern for the Banaban Community, and also for the betterment of our unique cultural identity, but let me respond to some of your comments which I find quite hard to swallow,. please don't take me wrong here!…I am one with you in every sense but the following


We, Banabans, Fijians or Kiribati should focus on now and let go of the past (no matter how painful it is). I mean let go not forget. I do think of the past also, but what good will it do me now? Banaba is there and will not go anywhere, unless the waves wish to cover it up. At the moment we should concentrate on building not dwell in the destruction done long ago. It is good to know what happened and past it on for the generations to come (if you wish).
Yes you are true that whatever biological make-up we have today realistically cannot be changed, however you have to understand that we were once a unique people, with a unique language, a unique culture and etc that is unique only to Banabans. Again, I am not a dweller of the past, nor want to rejuvenate the bitter feelings of the past with our very own blood cousins from Kiribati. However I just want to state here that even though this uniqueness have lost its biological make-up, the spiritual, emotional and psychological side to it cannot be taken away. This is the emphasis that we should be promoting in this forum. We cannot generalize that uniqueness, otherwise we would condone our own cultural being forever and fall victims to the vicious cycle of indigenous condemnation and alienation. Yes this is sad because we have first lost that biological uniqueness. To make myself more clear on the issue, Let me state to you what my Friend Jordi from Barcelona had said (please see Banaban message board) where he stated that "difference isn't regarded like a cultural enrichment but a danger". Yes as you can see, the difference of cultural background should be regarded as a CULTURAL ENRICHMENT and not a DANGER to other cultural differences. Otherwise we will be REALLY the forgotten people of the Pacific in which goes against the very principle of what Ken and Stacy has been trying so hard to promote in this forum. It is true that everyone has the same goal and that is to rehabilitate Banaba. However what does that meant or me it means "TO GIVE AND NOT TO TAKE!" yes to give back not only what has been looted in the material sense, (in terms of phosphate) but also in the cultural, sense, our language, cultural norms and practices which makes us BANABANS unique in the first place! This may sound a tall order!. which is indeed true, it will never be realistically)!.but the least we could do is to show the world that we were once totally a unique society that has been looted of almost everything!..now I don't see anything wrong with that!..unless you don't see it yourself in the first place. (my apology if you do see it)! You furthermore stated countries like Australia and New Zealand more fertile. I think of all the farms that have benefit from Banaba. Now if Kiribati can benefit from Banaba then let it be. We certainly cannot change the past now and become independent (although it'll be neat). Maybe, we are meant to serve others through our soil. I think we should help
others whenever we can. Oh, don't get me wrong. I will be thrilled to see new developments taking place on Banaba. If Kiribati or any nation can help make Banaba more comfortable then it will be wonderful.
Oh no! it doesn't make me glow, but shrink! I'm sorry I think I really get you wrong here!…are you trying to say here that we should be proud of what we have done to Australia, and New Zealand, yes you think of all those farms and what good things we have done to them?, and now you are again suggesting if I am right, to let Kiribati continue with it?……do you ever sit down and reflect what happened to your very own grandparents or parents when they got rooted from their own backyards?…please forget about the notion of time!…just imagine if I come to your house, give you 2cents, have your house dismantled, dig a hole around your property, order your family to pack up and send you and your family to the middle of no where, where the climate, food, people and environment is totally different from what you have been used to!..and with almost 500 or so miles away from home! Tell me would you forget this?…knowing that your property have been turned into a commodity worth enough to buy all the lands in the Pacific?...yes if you can swallow these, then you are a real modern day crusader of peace and love and reconciliation!!!!…sorry I don't swallow that easily! Yes furthermore you said

point fingers anymore. What happened in the past is truly sad > and unfortunate, but we survive. True, many of us have different blood running through our veins but in our hearts we are truly free to become who we want to be. And nothing can anyone take that from us.

You know, truth has a face, it points at people that are cruel, evil and selfish!..yes we have to take away this taboo business of respect when we are being crushed from left to right. I suppose at times it is really necessary to point at people, not to hurt but to cry FOUL!..for the disrespect he or she has shown towards condemnation of your own cultural heritage!....Yes you are true to work together is good, but what happens if your very close relatives whom you are trying to work with tries to steal of what is left of your meagre belonging!..ummnnnn!….that is ofcourse unthinkable.(I guess you guys in the States would have a 4.5magnum or whatever of that sort to deal with these)!..well as for me, I don't have a gun but a finger to point at people right in the face if they have no respect for what I hold is true and just... Yes you can say that we survive!….but look where we are nowadays?..you in America, me here in Japan, some in Australia, the other is from Rabi, and another is from Kiribati!!!..please wake up, we are all scattered all over the entire face of this globe!….we are disoriented because we have lost our uniqueness through the hands of those people that have dismantled what we hold so dearly in our hearts and minds and that is our Identity...so what has happened in the past, again if you take away the notion of time, as I said above will never be forgotten!..JUSTICE has to be prevailed in the face of evil!..whether it was done 1000years ago or yesterday!..it is still the same, crime is crime!. Let me state myself clearly here that this Identity issue should not hold as a catalyst for bitterness between and among our young generations and those of our Kiribati cousins or whatever cultural identity it crosses!…but as reminder of the injustice, evil manipulation, corruption, ethnic cleansing, wickedness and greed that has been slashed down to us!..even to this very moment! Furthermore you wrote I say Keep the culture alive in what we do, but most of all with what we teach our kids. This is hard to do, I know. I have three young ones who find it hard to practice their culture here since all their friends consider such cultures as 'weird'. In time they will remember and cherish what happened to the land, hopefully with other means than just stories. My hope is that these stories will live forever.

Yes what culture are you trying to keep…what will you teach your children…a combination of the three, ..Fijian, Kiribatian and Banaban...well that is a very hard task for you, nevertheless I wish you all the best, if you could melt them together! What will they cherish about their land…whichever you are talking about? But if you think that they will cherish Banaba then think twice, they will just turn around and ask you the very same question that I will ask you now…and that is!…"WHO DID THIS TO US??…who DUG up ALL of these?..where was my Grandparents used to live?…..and maybe you will just laugh and say, .."ah!..yes you see the Australians and the New Zealanders dug all of them up"!..but I guess you won't tell them that the Kiribatian and Tuvaluan labourers got paid to do the dirty jobs for them!..yes I bet you won't say that maybe because you don't want to hurt your children's feelings about their unique cultural heritage! (or whatever I don't know)…well for your information! when it comes to justice I will stand up for what is right even if my very close relative(a Fijian, Kiribatian or Banaban) for that reason is responsible. And I guess you will stand with me in this regard. Please don't take me wrong, for most of the above comments, I am just trying to support your idea of "togetherness", yes you are true but let first let us build our Banaban togetherness, before anything else, as the saying goes, "we cannot give if we don't have" yes we can only give our Banaban uniqueness to the rest of the world, if we find it first…and now is the time to do that...so let us work within our own Banaban cultural framework first, let us heal own wounds first, let us take away the intricate webs of identity issues that have blinded our own cultural uniqueness and be proud of that cultural difference and be counted with the rest of the indigenous race now dwindling so fast around the globe for the sake of our ancestors whom have lost and suffered so many things for our very own survival before we start to clear the rest of our other cultural identity that we are part and partial to so to speak!..and for that I invite you to stay true to our cause and freedom! And don't discourage us with the idea that we cannot get our independence…which you again would have love to have in the first place, (as you stated when you say "it will be neat")! if Iam right!

Happy reading

Ko batin nraba!


Tebanimarawa
tstanley@clunet.edu
California
USA
17 May 2000

Mauri!

I have read all the confrontations and my heart is filled with sadness.
I know that a lot of people that I love cannot have not come to grib with
who they nor have any pride in their biological make-up.

I am young enough to think of now, today and ponder on what tomorrow will be like.
I am proud to have a Banaban dad and a Nikunau mom. Both their genes have joined to
produce a lovely ME. I cannot love my dad and hate my mom's family (or vice-versa).
I cannot love being a Rabian and hate the Kai-Viti for I am a Fijian too.
Here in the States, I feel proud when someone tells me they've been Fiji.
I enjoy telling friends where my parents were brought up, the fun part is to explain
where Kiribati, Banaba and sometimes Fiji is. It is strange for me to find that
not many people do not know where these little countries are on the map.

These people focus on where they are, making ends meet and building their future.
Now, I think that is not a bad idea. We, Banabans, Fijians or Kiribati should
focus on now and let go of the past (no matter how painful it is).
I mean let go not forget. I do think of the past also, but what good will
it do me now? Banaba is there and will not go anywhere, unless the waves
wish to cover it up. At the moment we should concentrate on building not
dwell in the destruction done long ago. It is good to know what happened
and past it on for the generations to come (if you wish). But talk about
the service Banaba has done. It makes me glow to think that little Banaba
has contributed to making big countries like Australia and New Zealand
more fertile. I think of all the farms that have benefit from Banaba.

Now if Kiribati can benefit from Banaba then let it be. We certainly cannot
change the past now and become independent (although it'll be neat).
Maybe, we are meant to serve others through our soil. I think we should help
others whenever we can. Oh, don't get me wrong. I will be thrilled to see
new developments taking place on Banaba. If Kiribati or any nation can help
make Banaba more comfortable then it will be wonderful.

The best thing to do is try and work together and help one another, but not
point fingers anymore. What happened in the past is truly sad
and unfortunate, but we survive. True, many of us have different blood
running through our veins but in our hearts we are truly free to become who we want to be. And nothing can anyone take that from us.

I say Keep the culture alive in what we do, but most of all with
what we teach our kids. This is hard to do, I know. I have three
young ones who find it hard to practice their culture here since
all their friends consider such cultures as 'weird'. In time
they will remember and cherish what happened to the land,
hopefully with other means than just stories. My hope is that
these stories will live forever.

Peace to all!


David Kwong
tavitak@yahoo.co.uk
Suva
Fiji
16 May 2000

Hello everyone! I am new to this site. I wonder if it would be possible if I could be included in the mailing list for any current or future interesting issues of Banaba.

I was born in Rabi and wish to get informed of any further issues as mentioned in the recent discussions.

cheers


Tebanimarawa
tstanley@clunet.edu
California
USA
16 May 2000
Mauri!

I wish to know more old stories of Banaba.
Does anyone knows the name of the lady who first discovered "Te Manai" water-hole? This is from the story about discovering water on Banaba.

I was born on Rabi (Buakonikai) and have not set foot on Banaba but I would like to take my family there some day. I have three children, two were born in Fiji, and the youngest was born here
in the USA. They love to hear old stories of Banaba which I tell from what my father told me as a child. They also enjoy reading stories about Kiribati (Tales from Northern Kiribati). We would
like to own Myths and Legends of the South Pacific Islands.

If there are other story books available please let us know.

Tao ti ngaia anne moa! Tiabo! Moce! Tofa!

Peace.


Ken Sigrah
banaban@ion.com.au
Gold Coast
Australia
13 May 2000
Dear friends,

It is obvious that arguments and confrontations on this message board have become an issue between a Banaban and an I-Kiribati in regard to identity. The identity of a certain group of people is a unique and TABOO subject worldwide. If one claims to be I-Kiribati, only the people of Kiribati will know and understand this lineage. If one claims to be a Banaban then it is for the Banabans to talk on this issue.

What is more important, and the reason for putting up this message board, is


Tei Kiribati
Beru Island
Kiribati
10 May 2000
Hi

It is not my intention to create negative comments to my Banaban/Fijian? friend. For the sake of the Banabans who have I-Kiribati blood running through their veins please do not be mislead them - you cannot deny this claim!

Who says that geography/distance/country's name is the determining factor? Where is the boundary that marks the end of one culture and the beginning of another culture. Can we say that the Lauans are not Fijians because of the difference in the physical nature of the land - flat and mountainous? Who says that if a land is raised the people are different from those living on flat land? Do not be disturbed by such labels as Kiribati (colonial legacy). If we adopt the name Tungaru - what difference does it make? Tungaru means a nation of one culture bound by tradition. We claimed ourselves as belonging to an island - tei Banaba, tei Beru, tei Nonouti etc

I believe you understand how important culture is to identity - who you are. I was in Fiji and it was good to see my family who have been living in Rabi. Reunion of the family is paramount important in culture - unless your identity is different from that of this race.

Negative arguements leads to nowhere.What is important is FAMILY. When one leaves Kiribati to Fiji someone is in Rabi to care and so as a Banaban living on Rabi. The family in Kiribati is there to welcome you.

I do agree with you that the government should consult the Banaban landowners if it is true that she is going to re-mine the guano. We have the right to protect our own islands.


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo.com
Ibarakiken
Japan
10 May 2000
Oopps!..sorry let me correct the last sentence, of my second message to Mr Tei Kiribati!..that those are just only two of the so many thousands factual evidence to prove our Banaban identity that I could possibly write to him tonight!...yes he will hear more from me!

Cheers


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo.com
Ibarakiken
Japan.
10 May 2000
Dear Tei-Kiribati,(oopps!..is that fine with you)?

Well since it has taken you awhile to come out with your real identity,let me put forth a few of the facts to cool your thirst on the issue of our Banaban identity, in which I hope would tame you out from your hiding place.

First of all let let us be frank in the first place!..your essence on the I-Kiribati identity is a neo-colonialistic identity based on some guys who accidently discovered your Islands and decided it fancy to name it under his name!..Gilbert..so yes!..that is how you got the "so called Gilbertese version" of I-Kiribati?..isn't it!..well my point is, that once there was this Air Tugaru thing about naming of the airlines in Kiribati which I happened to hear rumours about it while in Rabi, but alas!...I now know from facts, that during the Kiribati independence in 1980, the name Tugaru was originally specified as the official name of Kiribati.....which when translated really meant "16 atolls of Kiribati", however due to the Banaban issue or may I say the greed of the Kiribati people to get their hands on material wealth of the race of the Banaban Community, the name Tugaru wouldn't really appropriately fix the political boundary that you she wanted, thus I-Kiribati was chosen to firmly have Ocean Island included under her wings, because by now there are 17 atolls altogether due to the insertion of Banaba to the Republic of Kiribati...yes Tugaru would not sound good since now she have Banaba as the 17th atoll in the republic" however which again lead me to my second point...that Ocean lsland is not an atoll but a submerged volcanic island totally different from the rest of the Kiribati atolls. The distance itself speaks for it.Nevertheless for the sake of our global community at hand, let me reiterate myself on the above for further clarification,transparency and accuracy!

Kiribati was the name given to the Gilbert Islands during their independence in 1980. It was during this time that the people of Kiribati wanted to reintroduce the traditional name of Tungaru, but were unable to this, as the Banaban community took the case for independence to the British Parliament and the United Nations. Tungaru in the Kiribati language translates to 16 atolls. Of course this name in tradition never included the 17th island of Banaba, and the fact that Banaba island was formed from a sub-marine mountain and is not an atoll like the rest of the Kiribati group. Kiribati is the translation for the English word 'Gilbert'.

Well these are the only 2 factual evidence and proof that we are different from you guys! Later on, I will elaborate further when I have ample time on the issue such as physical and biological difference, social and political difference and cultural difference, that exists between you and us!!

Good reading and lets hear more from your version.

Cheers


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo.com
Ibarakiken
Japan.
09 May 2000
Reply to Tei-Kiribati!!!

Greetings to this Tei-Ikiribati from Beru???..or wherever you are hiding!!..I guess is it very much a typical game known in your place where you come up from behind and unleash devasting blows to your opponent? (no stereotyping here)!! well....you seem to be so much well versed with your own devious explanations about history (ofcourse without much substance to it)!..but yet have no guts in releasing your name and your e-mail on this site!...well a typical sign of cowardice worse than that of a dog barking at his own front door!..well you deserve that!..don't you?...yes next time come up and unmasked yourself..yeah!..stand up like a man!..it is no use responding to your claims since we cannot even address your name in the first place!!..or maybe you are just too shy about it I suppose!!!


Tei Kiribati
Beru
Kiribati
09 May 2000
The Banaban people have lost their traditional culture because of the Kiribati Bible that was forced upon the Banabans to use.
What proof can you provide by making such statements? The missionary to Nauru is an I-Kiribati by the name Tabuia. He also uses the Kiribati Bible in converting the Nauruans. Elekana from Samoa converted the Tuvaluans using the Samoan Bible. Today the Tuvaluans use the Samoan Bible but it does not mean that they speak the Samoan language. Nauruans still uses their Nauruan language even though Tabuia from Kiribati converted them to christanity. How come then that the Banaban original language was lost during the process of christening?

Who are you to claim that you are 100% pure Banaban blood. Why is it that Banaban ladies are willing to marry I-Kiribati labourers working on Banaba and vice versa. Why is it different with the Nauruans who were hesitate in marrying I-Kiribati gentlemen working on Nauru? It is because of the difference in culture. I-Kiribati are not Nauruans and vice versa whereas Banabans are I-Kiribati. It is because of this same culture and tradition that one is accepted as into a race. The Fijians would like to marry a Fijian rather than an Indian - you prefer your own kind.

By blood the Banaban people are I-Kiribati. Prove to the world that Banabans are not I-Kiribati.

Someone who care for his Banaban family.

 


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo.com
Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture
Japan
06 May 2000
Do anyone knows that Kiribati is about mine Ocean island, again??? with 60% to the company and 40% to Kiribati and none to Banabans! Infact I had acquired a feasibility study report on one of my consultation trips to Fiji in January this year! from SOPAC, ie South Pacific Geoscience Commission at Nabua 3miles!....which underlines the first feasibility study!...the second feasibility study is already underway which constitute the above facts....yes just to warn the international community through this website that another confrontation is about to happened right now, and things are quite boiling up with the locals back in Rabi!..it seems that the present Rabi Council of Leaders have again stir up another repeat of the sad events of the 1970's by secretly negotiating without the peoples' knowledge with the Kiribati Government about a deal!.. that will spell the beginning of yet another unprecedented tragedy!

Loloma

Paulo


Paulo Vanualailai
vanualailai@yahoo.com
Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture!
Japan
06 May 2000
Greetings to anyone of Banaban blood, just recently I was writing in one of the Kiribati website site http://www.collectors.co.nz/kiribati/index.html on the issue of natural resources of Kiribati, which really have disturbed me!! and I just wanted to say how much Iam thankful for this Banaban website, in which I had quoted so many of my facts in retaliation of the ongoing critism that I had encountered through those that have replied me please read on,


Dear Sir/Madam,
I am writing in from Japan, of Fijian and part Banaban/Gilbertse origin. Just wanted to elaborate on an issue which is of great sensitivity to all of us who are of Banaban origin. And that is while looking through the website listed --http://www.collectors.co.nz/kiribati, it categorically stated that the natural resources of Kiribati is phosphate, which I can only infer to that of Ocean Island.

Well I guess the Republic of Kiribati could now show the rest of the world, that they have public domain on Banaba. without even diclosing the fact to the real owners of the resource. It may seem an issue that is of little political interest to the rest of the world, however, for me as a direct descendant of the Banaban race, with due respect to the Gilbertese people, would rather see the issue as of great political, social and economic ramifications on all sides, however weighing more heavily on us, the vanishing race of the humble Banaban identity. .

For me, this is a total disrespect to our minority group who are almost scattered all over the entire continent with few respectable communities in Fiji, due to the greed, cruelty and manipulative forces of former colonial powers that almost wiped our entire identity from the face of this earth.

I believe the institutional legal framework, in which Kiribati Government could use or claim the island as her own, is well pronounced in paper work I guess (nevertheless argumentative). However the Pacifican community have always been known to have kept their social and political identity intact intellectually and from this point of view would indeed questioned such claims as issued by the Kiribati Government. Let you be informed that the United Nations have constitutions on intellectual rights of indigenous people.

Therefore for discussion sake, I suggested that the Kiribati Government should never let herself associated its sovereignity and identity with Banaban phosphate, since this is indeed a false claim, which could only mislead the international community. Moreover, this is indeed a very cheap diplomatic representation which reflects desperation of material wealth, insentivity of the minority owners, political bully and manipulation, based on greed and misleading ethno-centric ideals.

Please the people of Kiribati, don't let the few in power reflects a distorted image of Kiribati by disclosing these false claims on very website of Kiribati on the world page. This is quite a political embarrassment and naivety at its highest level.

Sincerely

Paulo

The following is one of the reply that I had received!

So Paulo, where were you when this dispute/resolution took place toward the end of 1970s? Are you just being matured with your information? Sorry, you missed the boat bro!!
By the way, who are the indigenous people? Are they the ones completely different from IKiribati? I know that some may be part(halfcast) including your very self as I can tell from your name. So would you regard yourself an INDIGENOUS creature of Banaba or IKiribati?

I strongly believe that Banaban are IKiribati and vice versa. We all share the same social, cultural, even political background but most of all, everyone has 100% BIOLOGICAL relationship.

For your information, Kiribati through its constitution, serves the need of Banaban like the rest of the country. For example, by having an MP representing Banaba and an ex-officio acting for those in Rabi, Fiji. So what are you so fussy about?

I do not see the signifigance of your issue but I would love to join hands with you and attack those who have reaped us off during colonisation. Am bai Te Mauri Te Raoi ao Te Tabomoa


And this was my reply to him!!!

"Greetings to you!..indeed thanks for the advice on indigenous people, and clarification on my character and background, however let me clarify myself more for your own misinformed knowledge, on the meaning of indigenous as I have stated in my previous letter. It simply meant that the Banabans are not "I Kiribatian" as you have stated!!
Yes and who ever has given you the facts about Banaban-I kiribatian relationships is indeed very ignorant about the facts concerning the history and chronological events of the people of Ocean Island, that have evolved about throughout the past 2 thousands of years until recently when phosphate was discovered on the island.

Please be informed that the Banabans are indigenous in that that they have a unique Language totally different from yours, Yes for your own infomation let me clarify the FACTS!! and please don't you ever give me unsound theories based on nothing but ignorance and stupidity!! please read the following

The American Mission Society arrived on Banaba in the late 1890s. Having translated the bible into the main language of Kiribati (then the Gilberts) the missionaries encouraged the people to adopt the new language so as to understand the "Word of God". (using "Word of God" as a tool for their sinister ulterior motive end)! As a result the Banaban language has been drastically changed to the extent that it is now considered a lost language. Indeed we have a set of cultural practises totally different from the I-Kiribati ways, even geographically we are much near to Nauru then to Kiribati! Yes the island is 260 km from Nauru and 400 km from Kiribati!! or maybe for the benefit of the doubt!!..you do know these things!!Please don't fool me!..just fool your own self!

Let me re-emphasize your statement, about missing the boat in 1970's could you be specific about what you are talking about?..where are your facts to prove your unsound criticisms?...what do you mean?..missing the boat!..I guess you are the one that misses the boat! What resolution do we have in common, is this what you mean? please read on

"It was when the Gilbert and Ellice Islands were moving for separation and independence. The Banaban sought independence also. They wanted their island placed under Fiji's protection, along with Rabi Island. Protests mounted as the Banaban moved for their sovereignty and, in 1979, the mining facilities were bombed. But, because Kiribati wanted to gain control of the mine, Britain ruled against Banaban independence - although the mine was expected to close.Mining stopped in 1980, following depletion of the deposit, but not before nine-tenths of the island had been destroyed. The Banaban continue their wish become an independent nation, but Kiribati, hopeful that mining will one day resume, wants to maintain control over the island". British croonies I suppose!!

Well let me tell you one more thing about the 1970's!!

The economy was dominated by phosphate mining until 1979 when the deposit was depleted. Mining was carried out by British Phosphate commissioners acting on behalf of the British, Australian and New Zealand (Aotearoan) governments. Royalties from the mine went to the Kiribati nation as a whole. The mines closure impacted drastically on the Kiribati economy, cutting export earnings by 88.6% in 1980.

Maybe this is what you meant by "peaceful resolution that took place towards the end of 1970!!!as you have quoted??..well well, I'll be damned!!....peaceful resolution????...based on nothing but greed! and on others material wealth!I suppose!..feeding on the vulnerability of the few! and violation of indigenous Banaba rights!

Well don't I have the right to be fussy about all of the above, miseries?...anyway who are you in the first place?, I guess you don't have any connections to Banaba, that is why it is easier for you spit rather then swallow your pride! I guess!

So you don't see the significance of my issue!!..well I don't see the significance of yours well!!!!...since it really reflects your stubborness in condoning the truth about sensitive issues! such as that of the above!!..maybe I am just wasting my time on unscholarly minds such that of yours!....and please don't embarrass yourself dignity by associating our struggle with that of yours!...you are nothing but a scavenger!.. ready to feed on what others have gained!!!..and what others have as Godly right to their beloved abode!

Please do come up with more in-depth critique of issues, next time around!

Cheers!""

Well that is all, I guess we can be still pro-active in our fight for our own identity and whatever the consequence will be, it will be in God's hands that the truth, difficulty and hardship on which we have based our survival upon up til now, would be our very own weapon to make way for a revival that is long time over-due I suppose!

Vinaka and Teraoi!
Paulo Vanualailai


Janelle Fox (NE: Janelle Gajdik)
basilz@ihug.co.nz
Auckland
New Zealand (Ex Australia)
05 May 2000
I am an ex-resident of Ocean Island (1965-1976). Daughter of Anne and Mike (Milos) Gajdik (Fitter and Turner in the Machine Shop), who were incidentally married on Ocean Is. in 1962. I have two sisters Karen (1963) and Kristen (1975). Kristen was born on Banaba Island so I guess she's an Banaban. I also have a brother burried on the Island named Paul. He was just a few months old when he died October 11th 1967. Fascinating to find out a few fact about the Island after so long. And I'm a devistated to find out the condition of the Island and the people as It was a wonderful place to grow up on. By for now

Janelle Fox (Ne: Gajdik)


Tony Flude
tonyf@ihug.co.nz
New Zealand.
27 April 2000
Hi,
I am seeking information about Captain Peter THEET who was a Harbourmaster at Banaba, Ocean Island around the turn of the century, 1900-1920 time.
Can anyone assist in this research please, with dates and or records of his employers at the time.
Thanks a lot for any info at all.


Sayantan
S.Ghosal@warwick.ac.uk
U.K.
08 April 2000
"Every emanicipation is a restoration of the human content
of human relationships to man himself"
-Karl Marx


Dania
D.Thomas@law.hull.ac.uk
U.K.
08 April 2000
Hi,Thrilled to find information about the Banaban on your
web-site. I am doing a Phd dissertation trying to understand
how rights of communities like the Banaban should be structured.
I need statistics on well-being indicators such as
infant mortality rates, literacy figures (including how
literacy is defined), deaths during child-birth. Could you
please tell me where I can find this information.
Thank you for the web-site.
Regards

female literacy, life expectancy etc.


Mateo Demoni
mattontheroad@yahoo.com
USA
26 March 2000
Hello, I was wondering if anyone knew where I could get some info on making traditional clthing item made from grass/grass reeds, etc. Stuff like grass reed crowns and the like, you know. Anybodys input would be wonderful, thanks.


anne
Redanne23@aol.com
USA
25 March 2000
I was wondering if anyone knows who has owned the island before the Banabans and who discovered it. I also have a few other questions about the island if anyone knows please emialme! redanne23@aol.com!
Thank you
anne


ray calbreath
ray calbreath
usa
01 March 2000
Have you ever thought of the possibility of a POLLUTION FREE,SELF POWERED,POWER SOURCE?. I have a design for one. Less parts than a gasoline engine,and more power for the same size (more than two times). So simple in design and what makes it run, that its AWESOME.
This design is FREE to any one that wants to use it.
If you are interested, feel free to contact me
raymond@tigernet.missouri.org


FAKHRUDDIN
f.kb@usa.net
NEW DELHI
INDIA
31 January 2000
I Like Banaban people, I am planning to visit Banaban people.


MOHAMMAD ALI
m_aliz_2000@yahoo.com
NEW DELHI
INDIA
31 January 2000
I like Banaban ,


MOHAMMAD ALI
m_aliz_2000@yahoo.com
NEW DELHI
INDIA
31 January 2000
I like Banaban


lisa downum
carlissa@bscn.com
USA
25 January 2000
I would like to know the ethnic descent of the Banaban people. I would also like information on any items from Banaba that I might could buy for about $10.00 USA money. I am doing a presentation on the Banabans for a multicultural class for my post graduate work. I would like to know about their culture, their social events, etc. Thank you for any information you think I might find useful, including anything that I haven't mentioned.


Pete
earn-cash@on.to
Australia
13 January 2000
hi all, if you are interested in earning money while you surf the net then visit my site @ http://on.to/earn-cash where I have put together a good lists of companies that pay you to surf the net.
cheers
pete


Joe Russell
neeri69@aol.com
Michigan
USA
05 January 2000
Kam na Mauri kain Banaba,
I am an i-Kiribati living in the States for a while, and am married to an I-Kiribati lady who lived on Banaba during the late 40's and early 50's.
Ti a kabo for now,
Yours, Joe Russell

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