#ReclaimAustralia #Melbourne : Aftermath …

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Briefly: police quarantined maybe 100-150 Reclaim Australia (RA) supporters on the concourse above the square. They were then surrounded on both sides by police. Anti-racists formed picket lines around this assembly and prevented many (but not all) other racists from joining their racist brethren above (police did manage to force a way thru the picket on the Flinders St side to allow several dozen racists thru). There was then a stand-off with occasional unsuccessful attempts by racists to break the picket and a small amount of argy-bargy. After an hour or two of this the racists above moved to stand in front of Chocolate Buddha — again surrounded by a large number of police. Some time later, police decided to move the racists out of the square by way of the steps to the Yarra. The hundred or more racists then milled about alongside the Yarra and slow progress (with police escort) was then made to Flinders St station where things basically came to a halt and most dispersed.

Initial verdict: a partial victory for anti-racists, with the racist RA supporters outnumbered, isolated and unable to control the square — and eventually forced to leave. Otherwise: RA attracted many more supporters than the last time (2011) racists tried to rally at Fed Square — a warning signal to the left, I guess, that hatred of Muslims has significant support among the wider population and wrapping this phobia in the Australian flag (one example of which was burnt at the rally by Indigenous activists) will likely draw some small degree of support … but also attract, at least in Melbourne, significant opposition (even without the support of the unions).

And oh yeah: the Reclaim Australia Twitter account was hacked … LOL.

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I may write a more complete account and some analysis later. In the meantime:

‘Aboriginals Are Dickheads': Reclaiming Australia, One Racist Video Rant At A Time, New Matilda, April 4, 2015
Reclaim Australia rallies: protesters clash in Melbourne and Sydney, Michael Safi, The Guardian, April 4, 2015
So this is Easter: Melbourne faces off at anti-Islam rally as police on horseback hold factions apart, John Elder, The Age, April 4, 2015
Reclaim Australia clashes with opposing groups at rallies around the country over extremism and tolerance, ABC, April 4, 2015
Reclaim Australia Twitter account hacked as rallies staged around Australia, The Sydney Morning Herald, April 4, 2015
Reclaim Australia and No Room for Racism rallies clash across Australia, news.com.au, April 4, 2015

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#ReclaimAustralia : disrupt, dismantle, decolonise

Update : A quick guide to staying safe and being effective: all out against ‘Reclaim Australia’!, Anarchist Affinity, April 3, 2015.

From Cronulla December 2005 to Reclaim Australia April 2015 …

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The Reclaim Australia (RA) rallies are taking place tomorrow in (almost) every capital city — Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart, Perth, Melbourne and Sydney — and a number of regional and rural centres — Albury (NSW), Broken Hill (NSW), Cairns (QLD), Esperance (WA), Gold Coast (QLD), Hervey Bay (WA), Mackay (QLD), Newcastle (NSW), Rockhampton (QLD), Sunshine Coast (QLD) and Toowoomba (QLD). Note that, outside of the capitals, it’s unclear if all the planned rallies will take place — a product of the ad hoc nature of the rallies and some bickering among the various rally organisers. Meanwhile in Toowoomba, the hard-pressed patriots have been instructed not to bring along any ‘swastikers’ to their BBQ …

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Michael Safi @ Teh Grauniad has written about the rallies here: Anti-Islamic group Reclaim Australia plans 16 rallies across the country (April 3, 2015). Shermon Burgess aka ‘The Great Aussie Patriot’ and face of RA has form as an Australian Defence League (ADL) member. As well as singing songs about killing Muslims and burning down mosques, he even boasts of having participated in the Cronulla pogrom in December 2005:

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Joining Burgess will be a range of other groups and individuals on the far right, including Mike Holt of Restore Australia (Newcastle), Danny Nalliah of Rise Up Australia (Melbourne), members of the ADL, Australia First Party, Patriots Defence League Australia, neo-Nazis and White supremacists responding to the call-out by US-based neo-Nazi site The Daily Stormer.

There have been actions organised to oppose RA tomorrow:

Adelaide
Reclaim Adelaide from the Racists
Saturday April 4 10am @ Festival Plaza
Facebook event: Reclaim Adelaide from the Racists

Brisbane
Rally Against Racism & Bigotry
Saturday April 4 10:30am @ King George Square
Facebook event: Rally Against Racism & Bigotry /// Brisbane Counter-Protest to the neonazi-led “Reclaim Australia”

Canberra
Stand Against Islamophobia! (Canberra’s Reclaim Australia Counter Protest)
Saturday April 4 11am @ National Library
Facebook event: Stand Against Islamophobia! (Canberra’s Reclaim Australia Counter Protest)

Gold Coast
Reclaim Australia Counter Rally
Saturday April 4 10am @ Evandale Park
Facebook event: Reclaim Australia Counter Rally

Hobart
Anti-Rally Solidarity
Saturday April 4 11:30am @ Parliament Lawns
Facebook event: Anti Rally- SOLIDARITY!!

Melbourne
Rally Against Racism
Saturday April 4 midday @ Federation Square
Facebook event: Rally Against Racism

Perth
Rally Against Racism
Saturday April 4 11am @ Solidarity Park
Facebook event: Rally Against Racism

Sydney
Anti-Racist Counter-Rally – Stop Islamophobia
Saturday April 4 10:30 am @ Martin Place
Facebook event: Anti-Racist Counter-Rally

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#ReclaimAustralia : Refugees are welcome — racists are not!

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The following leaflet was distributed at the Palm Sunday rally in Melbourne today. See : Thousands march in Melbourne on Palm Sunday to protest asylum seeker policies, Alana Schetzer, The Age, March 29, 2015.

PDF of leaflet: standuptoracism.

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#ReclaimAustralia (minus one week + counting …)

It’s one week until neo-Nazis, white nationalists, evangelical Xtians, patriotic suburbanites and folks from regional and rural NSW, QLD and WA descend on Adelaide, Brisbane, Cairns, Esperance (WA), Gold Coast, Hervey Bay (QLD), Hobart, Mackay (QLD), Melbourne, Newcastle, Perth and Sydney in order to inform Australian Muslims that they should f*ck off. (Rallies may/not also be held in Broken Hill, Bunbury, Bundaberg, Canberra, Sunshine Coast, Rockhampton and Toowoomba.)

Counter-rallies are being held in Brisbane, on the Gold Coast and in Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.

Below is some agitprop.

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PDF version of above poster3_MELB(3) | PDF version of ‘Fuck Fascism’ poster (Melbourne) poster2_MELB(1).

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antifa notes (march 26, 2015) : #ReclaimAustralia (again)

What’s a racism?

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Racist Reclaim Australia organisers complaining that their racist rally is attracting racists.

*smh*

The ‘Reclaim Australia’ (RA) rallies are just nine days away now. Folks in Melbourne and elsewhere are organising various activities to oppose these public exercises in racial and religious vilification. Please see : SYDNEY | PERTH | MELBOURNE | GOLD COAST | CANBERRA | BRISBANE | ADELAIDE.

The main promoter of RA, Shermon Burgess (‘The Great Aussie Patriot’), has been busy working with the neo-Nazis of ‘Nationalist Republican Guard’ (NRG) to produce (increasingly bIzArRe) YouTube videos promoting the rallies and is otherwise doing his best to whip up anti-Muslim sentiment. Given the general political climate and the PM’s recent doubtful speech on national security, this is not a very difficult task and brings many dividends. See, for example : Muslim woman speaks out about attack on Sydney train, says she was targeted because of religion, Mohamed Taha, ABC, March 24, 2015.

As for ‘The Great Aussie Patriot’, as well as being active for several years as a member of the ‘Australian Defence League’, Burgess also wrote songs for his studio project ‘Eureka Brigade’ glorifying violence against Muslims and asylum seekers and praising the ADL’s leader Ralph Cerminara. Cerminara, along with teenage sidekick Zane Commins (19), lead an unsuccessful crusade to Lakemba in late December 2014, ending up being arrested and charged with affray and behaving in an offensive manner.

From the beginning of 2015, Burgess has been co-producing promotional videos for the rallies with members of a tiny neo-Nazi group called ‘Nationalist Republican Guard’ (NRG, est. January 2013). NRG evolved out of another tiny grouplet called ‘European Australian Civil Rights League’ (EARL) but was/is otherwise an extension of the Melbourne-based neo-Nazi group ‘Nationalist Alternative’ (NAlt).

NAlt underwent an acrimonious split midway thru last year and its leader publicly named and shamed by some of its unhappy campers as Mark Hootsen. Hootsen was also until that time one of two mods on ‘Stormfront Downunder’, one of the world’s leading neo-Nazi/White supremacist websites and home to many of Australia’s fascists (including of course the Australia First Party).

For a short period following the split, the NAlt Facebook page published a range of bizarre materials attacking the group’s former leader — it has since been closed and an alternative FB page published. NRG has a Facebook page here. Its last post, published on November 8, 2014, is a link to a ‘humourous’ video titled ‘Hitler approves of NRG’.

The naughty boys of NRG briefly came to public attention in February 2014 when one of its members, Neil Luke Erikson, was convicted of harrassing a local rabbi — though Erikson’s long history of neo-Nazi activism was AFAIK never a matter discussed in court. In passing sentence on Erikson:

Magistrate Donna Bakos said she had no doubt Erikson’s calls were motivated by prejudice and found he had little remorse for his crime. But she ignored prosecution pleas to jail Erikson, sentencing him instead to psychological assessment and treatment in the community. “There is no other explanation except that they were motivated by prejudice, if not hatred, toward the victim because of his race,” she told Erikson. “It is degrading. It is hurtful. It is not to be tolerated.” Erikson, of Heidelberg West, pleaded guilty in the Melbourne Magistrates Court to stalking Rabbi Gutnick over the calls made in December 2012 and January 2013. Erikson told a forensic psychologist after his arrest he had many “Aussie Aryan friends” whom he found more entertaining than his other mates. He also said the calls were made as a practical joke.

Hurr hurr.

The fact that Burgess has hopped into bed with a convicted anti-Semite and neo-Nazis appears to have had precisely zero effect on his followers: they simply do not care, and neither does Burgess. Thus, while some of those who are happy to publicly express bitter hatred for Muslims also claim not to hate Jews, their sleazy alliances have not gone unnoticed and, I hope, will not go unchallenged either.

Shermon Burgess, James Richard Gilhome, Mike Holt & Co ~versus~ Robert Godino

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Last week James Richard Gilhome, a meatheaded fanboy of Burgess’s from Tasmania, claimed online to have determined that the author of this blog is a man by the name of Robert Godino. He’s wrogn, but the story has taken on a life of its own and now appears widely on social media, in particular on the Facebook page of Mike Holt’s bizarr0 ‘Restore Australia’ (By Getting Rid Of The Muslims). As well as describing Godino as “scum” and a “turd”, Holt accuses Godino of having engaged in criminal behavior (for which he has been reported to police). Asked if he had any concern over the potential problems Godino may face as a result as having been nominated in this fashion, Holt says ‘no’ and adds that he accepts full (legal, moral and political) responsibility for publishing Godino’s name, address, photo, email and claiming that he is the author of this blog.

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— a sample of some of the commentary appears below.

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Reclaim Australia Melbourne

chapmanatra

Right-wing Xtian homophobe Pastor Danny Nalliah is being joined by Bendigo councillor Elise Chapman at Reclaim Australia in Melbourne on April 4. You may remember Chapman from such tweets as ‘a disturbing image of babies with mutilated genitals’ sent ‘to a woman who supported a [mosque] development’ in Bendigo.

Truly a star-studded line-up.

Reclaim 4BC

4BC radio has a piece on ‘Reclaim Australia’ starring Scott Moerland, a member of the Christian fundamentalist party ‘Rise Up Australia’ (RUAP). Moerland was RUAP’s candidate for the seat of Oxley at the 2013 federal election. He placed last of eight candidates, receiving 400 votes (0.53%). RUAP’s leader, Danny Nalliah, claims that God speaks to him and that the Victorian bushfires of early 2009 were God’s punishment for the state government liberalising abortion laws: Nalliah will be speaking at the Melbourne rally.

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#ReclaimAustralia counter-rally posters (Bris, Mel, Syd)

rasyd3

Below are PDFs of the above image for counter-rallies in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney.

(Note that the speech bubble is derived from a Facebook disco in which opponents of Reclaim Australia were derided as ‘lefty sluts’.)

Feel free to download and distribute.

bris [Brisbane]
melb [Melbourne]
syd [Sydney]

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Rally Against #Racism, #Melbourne, Saturday April 4

Below are some PDFs of three posters/leaflets promoting the Rally Against Racism scheduled for Saturday, April 4 at Federation Square at noon. I’ll add more material as and when it’s produced.

rally against racism101
ANTI RACIST RALLY201
Rally notice301

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antifa notes (march 20, 2015) : #ReclaimAustralia

In just over two weeks, flag-waving Islamophobes, White nationalists, neo-Nazis and other radical right-wing elements will be attending one of several rallies to ‘Reclaim Australia’ (RA) …

… from the Muslim ruling class.

DSRA

Among those jumping on the Muslim-hating bandwagon is US neo-Nazi website Daily Stormer. You may remember Daily Stormer from such online hate campaigns as that directed at Australian Muslim lawyer Mariam Veiszadeh, Australian Race Discrimination Commissioner Dr Tim Soutphommasane (‘Operation: Filthy Chink Rat’) and Jewish Labor MP Luciana Berger (‘Operation: Filthy Jew Bitch’).

Daily Stormer believes that attendance at the rallies by neo-Nazis and White supremacists will provide them with good opportunities to meet like-minded individuals — and to recruit them. So does the Australia First Party, Nationalist Alternative and various other neo-fascist and neo-Nazi grouplets, including of course Nationalist Republican Guard (NRG) (see : slackbastard ~versus~ Australia First Party, Daily Stormer, Reclaim Australia (etc.), March 10, 2015).

NRG has for the last few months been joined by the face of RA, Shermon Burgess. Together they’ve produced a steady stream of YouTube videos promoting Adolf Hitler RA and warning Strayans about the dangers Muslims pose. NRG and Burgess’s videos are fairly poor-quality productions. In this sense, they’re very similar to Burgess’s previous expedition into music by way of ‘Eureka Brigade’ (EB). The band’s songs, inter alia, celebrated killing Muslims and burning down mosques.

Much of the material EB recorded has been removed from teh intarwebs, but some of their (appalling) efforts at making ‘Rock Against Communism’ muzak have been preserved on the ReclaimWhat site here. FWIW, Burgess’s bandmate, Alex John Wentworth, manages to capture the spirit of ‘patriotism’ on display at RA — and the easy-going nature Strayans are famous for the world over — in the following quip:

alexdeports

Hurr hurr.

In other news, Iggy Gavrilidis, the leader of the Australian branch of Greek neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn, is reportedly one of the speakers at the Melbourne RA rally (though I doubt he’ll be making an appearance). Pastor Danny Nalliah is also rumoured to be appearing in Melbourne and if he does will presumably be bringing with him a carnival of Christian fundamentalists. Otherwise, the stellar cast of performers at the Gold Coast includes disgraced former soldier Bernard Gaynor and crank cartoonist Larry Pickering.

On another, bizarre note, a Sydney Hobart resident and Burgess fan named James Richard Gilhome has popped a detecting hat on his head and come to the conclusion that I’m some other fella named Robert Godino. How did the citizen detective arrive at this startling conclusion? Here, James explains how his bRanes works:

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I suppose the only thing worth adding is that Gilhome’s cavalier attitude towards the possible repercussions for Robert Godino being identified as myself mirrors the attitude Burgess has towards working with convicted anti-Semites to promote patriotism.

Ho hum.

Finally, organisers in Melbourne claim to have received approval from Federation Square management to hold their hate rally in the heart of town. If correct, it would be a rather remarkable PR venture for Fed Square, which has to this point been more commonly associated with the promotion of liberal multiculturalism rather than, say, murderous hatred of Muslims.

You can contact Federation Square management here.

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Reclaim Australia Sydney Counter-Rally

For folks in Sydney …

10.30am, Saturday, April 4, Queens Square >>> Martin Place

“Counter-rally speakers at Queen Square (on Macquarie Street near St James station), followed by march to the top of Martin Place.
KYOL BLAKENEY, Sydney University SRC president and Aboriginal rights activist
NICK RIEMER, Refugee Action Coalition, Sydney
PAUL MCALEER, Maritime Union of Australia, Sydney branch secretary
More speakers TBC.”

Facebook : Anti-Racist Counter-Rally — Stop Islamophobia

RASYDboo

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Reclaim Australia Brisbane Counter-Rally

For folks in Brisbane …

11am, Saturday, April 4, King George Square

Facebook : Rally Against Racism And Bigotry – Brisbane

rallybrizvegas

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