July 30, 2014
War just part of long campaign
The author of a new book on the New Zealand Wars says military action was a part of the process by which Maori and Pakeha found ways to interact.
Matthew Wright says the European settlers arrived in overwhelming numbers with ambitious aims, which Maori stood in the way of them achieving.
He says when the wars finished they used other tactics, such as driving railway lines through Maori territory as a device for assimilating Maori.
" You get military history enthusiasts who focus on the battle and on the tactics and so forth but if you look at it as a way in which two people always were exploring the way that they were interacting. This is one way of doing it but there were others and they were explored also " he says.
Matthew Wright says Maori also looked for alternatives to taking on British regiments, including greater emphasis on parliamentary representation and using the courts to challenge land deals.
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