This is an account of the events leading up to the military coup in Fiji of May 1987 and the second one of September 1987, when racism and the use of force were institutionalized. The narrative follows the author's own experience when he returned to Fiji two days after the coup to persuade his daughter - of mixed race, married to a Tongan, and lecturer at the University of the South Pacific - to leave with her children. He was in London when the deposed Prime Minister, Timoci Bavadra, was trying to see the Queen, to enlist the support of Commonwealth heads of government, to get a hearing in Washington, all to no avail. He was aware, too, of the part played by his own country, New Zealand, and the background to the varying statements made by its Prime Minister, David Lange, and by the Prime Minister of Australia, Bob Hawke. He brings the story up to date with the promulgation of the new constitution.