Winding up the British Empire in the Pacific Islands by W. David McIntyre

By W. David McIntyre

Winding Up the British Empire within the Pacific Islands is the 1st distinctive account, in line with recently-opened records, of whilst, how, and why the British govt replaced its brain approximately giving independence to the Pacific Islands. As Britain started to dissolve the Empire in Asia within the aftermath of the second one international struggle, it introduced that there have been a few nations that have been so small, distant, and missing in assets that they can by no means develop into self sustaining states. despite the fact that, among 1970 and 1980 there has been a fast about-turn. sped up decolonization without notice grew to become the order of the day. the following used to be the dying warrant of the Empire, and hastily-arranged independence ceremonies have been played for 6 new states - Tonga, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, Kiribati, and Vanuatu.

The upward push of anti-imperialist pressures within the United international locations had a huge function during this switch in coverage, as did the pioneering examples marked through the discharge of Western Samoa by way of New Zealand in 1962 and Nauru through Australia in 1968. The tenacity of Pacific Islanders in holding their cultures used to be not like extra strident Afro-Asia nationalisms. The final of the Colonial place of work, through merger with the Commonwealth relatives workplace in 1966, by way of the becoming a member of of the Commonwealth and overseas places of work in 1968, turned a massive turning element in Britain's kin with the Islands. in preference to long-nurtured traditions of trusteeship for indigenous populations that had developed within the Colonial workplace, the recent overseas & Commonwealth place of work focused on fostering British pursuits, which got here to intend decreasing far-off commitments and focussing at the Atlantic global and Europe.

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Low, ‘Rule Britannia, Subjects and Empire’, Modern Asian Studies, 2002, 36(2): 499–502. 22 Winding up the British Empire in the Pacific Islands D ominion S tatus Firstly, Dominion status for the original core of self-governing white settler colonies meant a system of independence combined with unity that provided a powerful model. More gradual than the sovereign republic model pioneered by the United States and the Latin American States, it grew from new forms of self-government tried from the 1830s in the remnants of the First British Empire.

21 In response to the resolution, eight administering countries announced their intention to transmit non-political information on their own territories. These were Australia, Belgium, Britain, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the United States. The Soviet Union, Spain, and Portugal did not. This list of territories to be reported on totalled seventy-four (though several of these constituted groups of territories or islands). Forty-one were ruled by Britain, but three of its territories were excluded: Southern Rhodesia had been treated as self-governing since 1923, the Antarctic Territory was permanently populated only by penguins, and no one could be sure whether the Kingdom of Tonga had been treated as self-governing or simply overlooked.

29 See A. Zimmern, The Third British Empire: Being a Course of Lectures Delivered at Columbia University New York (London: Oxford University Press, 1926).  540, 549. ‘Imperialism, as such, is a Newly Coined Word’ 17 experiences were different. But attitudes are conditioned by these themes, and in the winding-up process a number of old Africa hands were posted to the Pacific Islands where they were known affectionately as ‘retreads’ or ‘exiles’, or less affectionately as ‘the Africa Corps’. 31 Yet his means, the Western Pacific High Commission, became the framework for widespread expansion.

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