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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 36, Number 10. 23rd May 1973

When Kiwis Fought Yankees

page 3

When Kiwis Fought Yankees

On April 3, 1943, one of the biggest riots in New Zealand's history took place in Wellington. It began when U.S. servicemen at the Allied Services' Club In Manners Street tried to prevent Maoris from drinking there. They drew their heavy webbing belts to emphasise their views, New Zealand servicemen, Maori and Pakeha, joined in. The resulting battle involving over one thousand servicemen and hundreds of civilians spread from Manners Street into Willis and Cuba Streets. U.S. military police joined in with their batons.

The battle lasted for about four hours and left many U.S. soldiers injured and at least two killed. Smaller battles took place later in other centres caused by the same U.S. provocation.

The battle of Manners Street marks a day when U. S. troops were defeated on New Zealand soil. Racist American politics were defeated by united New Zealanders.

Today U.S. imperialism is the main enemy of the people of New Zealand. Many New Zealanders realise that imperialist penetration of New Zealand must be soundly defeated. Just as its racist politics were defeated in Manners Street thirty years ago.