Stop bombing Kaula Island!

SUBHEAD: How can this island, part of Kauai County, be classified as a military "Aerial Bombing Target" and a "Seabird Sanctuary"? 

By Hope Kallai on 8 October 2012 for Island Breath - (

Image above: Aerial view of Kaula Island from the north. From (

Walter Ritte's surprise and shock about the continual bombing of Ka`ula Island made me realize how numbed and complaicent we have become, allowing this to continue. Walter, of course, is an activist involved in Hawaii sovereignty, cultural and environmental issues (including banning GMO experimentation from Hawaii) who helped save Kahoolawe island from US military and state of Hawaii.

[IB Editor's note: If you are sympathetic to these issues vote for Walter Ritte for Office of Hawaiian Affairs representative-at-large on election day.]

Image above: Crater on Kaula Island used Navy bombing target for a 500 lb bomb. Photo by Robert Shallenberger, 2010 (P.O. Box 6779 Kamuela, HI 96743 808.937.1775). From ( 
  • How can this island be classified as a military "Aerial Bombing Target" and a "Seabird Sanctuary?"
  • How did USA get control of this "Ceded Land"?
 From a sacred homeland and in search of the sacred homeland, a bird carries a gift from heaven. In the mist of sea spray and heavens cloud spray a rainbow prism is seen. The island in sight allows one to give a great gift from within. Symbolized by the pohaku.

This sacred island has been used as a bombing range by the United States Navy since at least 1952.

[IB Editor's note: The US Marines are planning on locating Ospreys (a major helicopter program) at Kanehoe Marine Base on Oahu that will also use the PMRF on Kauai and use Kaula Island as a target (and potential landing site.) See (]

Image above: An unidentified ordinance device may be inert, or may be unexploded. Photo by Robert Shallenberger, 2010 (P.O. Box 6779 Kamuela, HI 96743 808.937.1775). From ( 

Inert ordnance is supposed to be currently used, although live explosive ordnance has been used in the past, so there is a risk of unexploded ordnance on the island.

Permission from the U.S. Navy is required to land on the island, who currently conduct 148 Aircraft to Air/Ground Gunnery Operations each year on Ka`ula Island.  This bombing is expected to increase to increase to 328 "Gunnery Operations" per year by 2018.

The island holds many treasures. The ocean around this island is exceptional.  Fishing is good - plenty sharks, whales and monkseals. Five Fathoms Pinnacles is an awesome dive site.  Why bomb another important cultural treasure?

Any suggestions would be welcome.

Image above: The Pacific Ocean smashes against "The Rock", Kaula Island. (From
Composed by Lei‘ohu Ryder
December 30, 1999

Ka manu la’a lani
Auhea wale ‘oe
Ku’u lei aloha
He wailele Ka’ula

Ka manu la’a lani
Auhea wale ‘oe
Ku’u poli ia pili
Na pohaku i Ka’ula

Ilihune o ka la i’ini mau loa
Ua pili na mamo hulu
Kena o i’o o ka ‘aina papa la
Iluna me ka la’akea kalani e

Ka manu la’a lani
Auhea wale ‘oe
He mana’o pa’a pono kahi
I ke kai o na moku

Puana ka inoa
O Ka’ula
Ku’u home o na moku
O Ni’ihau
Oh bird of heaven
Where are you
My lei of love
Above the waters surrounding Ka’ula

Oh bird of heaven
Where are you
Keeping/holding close to the bosom
The stone (gift) Ka’ula

The rainbow in the mist forever
Carrying close the generations of the past
From the eye of the hawk I see the land
and I soar to heaven from whence I came

Oh bird of heaven
Where are you
My thoughts are sealed righteously
Within the island of sea

Tell the name
of Ka’ula
My home in the island

See also:
Ea O Ka Aina: Unproved Osprey on Kauai 8/21/12

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