Germany in the Pacific

Lake Ada opens up a magnificent scene of splendour from the Milford Sound Track. - Otago Witness, 19.6.1918.
Lake Ada opens up a magnificent scene of splendour from the Milford Sound Track. - Otago Witness, 19.6.1918.
Sir Robert Stout, writing in The Times, denies that Germany ever possessed any colonies in the Pacific.

''She seized some islands,'' he says, ''contrary to the wishes of their inhabitants, and she has governed them as autocrats govern; but she has had no colonies.'' It is to be feared that this declaration involves a verbal refinement which will not weigh very heavily at the conference that will determine the future of those islands.

The essential fact is that Germany held the islands prior to the war, and that she hopes to recover them, along with the territories she formerly possessed in Africa. Her aims have been quite frankly expressed by Dr Solf, her Minister of the Colonies, who has laid emphasis on the re-acquisition of the Pacific colonies as necessary to Germany.

It would be absurd to suppose that these colonies are so valuable to the Germans for the sake of their trade that their statesmen should base upon this ground a special claim for the restoration of them.

Population increase wanted

''If the birth-rate in New Zealand between the years 1882 and 1886 had been maintained, there would have been 240,000 more people than there are in the dominion today,'' said the Hon. G. W. Russell at the Auckland Town Hall on Friday night.

''The question of birth-rate is largely an economic one and if we want an increase in the population the State must share with the parents the responsibility of looking after the children. After the war is over one of our great problems will be to secure a large increase in our population. We shall have to adopt some scheme to encourage a stream of immigrants to New Zealand. We want the right class of people - men who will go to the back blocks, fell the bush, farm the land, make roads and railways; and women who will be willing to enter domestic service and help the wives and mothers of the dominion, on some of whom the burdens of the home now fall very heavily. New Zealand must be prepared to pay for the passage of those whom we want to help in the work of colonisation.''

Warm coastal current

Sea currents were being discussed at the Supreme Court at Wanganui in a civil action last week, when the Chief Justice referred to a little known fact (says the Herald). His Honor said a warm current from the Queensland coast washed the coast of Stewart Island and up the west coast of the South Island.

It was for this reason that the water at Westport was from 10 to 15 deg warmer than at Lyttelton, also it was the reason why there was not so much frost at Westport as at that point on the east coast.

Arson attempt at Bulls

What was apparently an attempt to burn down the courthouse at Bulls was discovered by a passer-by on Saturday night (says the correspondent of the Dominion). Constable Wilson, who lives in the vicinity, was called at once, and about a dozen buckets of water quelled the outbreak.

Investigation showed that a deliberate attempt had been made to set fire to the building by means of a light placed between the rear wall and the tank stand. There is little doubt that but for the prompt action taken the building and contents, including the court records, would have been destroyed. There is no clue to the perpetrators.

- ODT, 14.6.1918.



In the same way that Afrikaners considered themselves African, German Samoan populations were Islanders, regardless of European origins.