Invasion Day 2019

[UPDATE (January 24, 2019) : Please note that the far-right has declared their intention to attend the official, government-sponsored ‘Australia Day Parade’ in the city on January 26, and to use this as a springboard in order to disrupt the Invasion Day rally and march. The Parade is scheduled to take place from 11.00am to 11:45am along Swanston Street. Participation in the far-right assembly is being organised by the same folks who organised the anti-African rally at St Kilda Beach on January 5, and can reasonably be expected to attract the same crowd. Its chief promoter, Neil Erikson, will be hoping to antagonise participants in the Invasion Day event so as to film it and upload footage to his various Facebook pages, in a similar fashion to his successful attempt to antagonise African youth in St Kilda in the week prior to the St Kilda Beach rally and numerous other publicity stunts. Marshalls are aware of this possibility and it would be a shame if folks helped to gave him the attention he craves. Note also that Erikson will be joined by a number of other AltRight provocateurs who will have similar aims. These three documents contain the faces and names of a number of far-right activists who will likely be joining Erikson on the day, and in my view should be isolated and ignored wherever possible but whose presence it would be worthwhile alerting marshalls to if appropriate: JAN 26 a /// JAN 26 b /// JAN 26 c. *Please note that Kaylene O’Brien has disavowed any association with the True Blue Crew.]

Note : On Sunday, January 20, there will be a Tunnerminnerwait & Maulboyheenner Commemoration, which will be held at the Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheenner monument at midday at the corner of Victoria & Franklin Streets.

All media inquiries regarding the Melbourne/NarrmBirraranga event should be addressed to Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance (WAR) : warnarrm [at] gmail [dot] com.

• The Australian Jewish Democratic Society (AJDS) and Jews against fascism have organised a Jewish bloc to participate in the rally. For more deets, pls see their event page: ‘We invite all Jewish people to join us in standing and walking in solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people on Invasion Day, January 26, in proclaiming that sovereignty has never been ceded, and in celebrating Indigenous resistance, culture, history, and survival.’

• The AntiColonial Asian Alliance – Naarm/Melbourne will also have a presence on the day. ‘We are a group of Asian organisers looking to show visible and loud support for Aboriginal sovereignty and justice this invasion day. We aim to support the incredible ongoing work of Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance – WAR and be accountable to the First Nations communities all around these lands who have never ceded their sovereignty and who face ongoing colonial state violence.’

• No Pride in Detention will also be marching. ‘No Pride in Invasion is the LGBTIQ contingent in the Invasion Day rally and expresses our community’s support for justice for Indigenous people. We invite all queer folks and their friends, families and allies to march in solidarity with our First Peoples. People of colour, Aboriginals and Torres Straight Islanders are especially welcome.’

• There’s a Greek & Balkan bloc too. ‘As Greeks living on stolen land, we acknowledge the sovereignty, culture and country of the Wurundjeri of the Kulin Nation, and all indigenous peoples of this continent. We give our respects to their elders and warriors past, present and emerging. We remember that their sovereignty of this land was never ceded, and that the struggles against colonialism in all its forms is continuing. As a migrant community our histories, cultures and traditions have converged with original communities throughout the short time we’ve existed side by side, and we will stand in solidarity with indigenous peoples on Invasion Day 2019, and welcome all within the Greek community in all it’s variances to march with us.’

• Oh, and a Muslim bloc: ‘We invite all Muslims who are able to join us on the 26th of January and march in solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, on whose lands we have the privilege of living …’

• Community radio station 3CR will be bringing youse news & views throughout the day.

• Events are also taking place in:

Belgrave, VIC (2019 Belgrave Survival Day);
Bermagui, NSW (Bermagui Survival Day 2019);
Meanjin/Brisbane;
Canberra;
Darwin;
Devonport;
Hobart;
Perth;
Sydney;
Townsville, QLD;
Tandaya, SA (Tandanya “Survival Day”) &;
Berlin.

See also : January 26: Join the Invasion Day protests and events, Green Left Weekly, January 17, 2019 | This Invasion Day, march for the future, Celeste Liddle, Eureka Street, January 22, 2019.

*I’ll add other events & locations as I become aware of them.*

antifa notes (february 3, 2018) : STRAYA Day +++

STRAYA Day

Tens of thousands of people attended Invasion Day rallies across the country, with the rally in Melbourne attracting anywhere from 30,000 to 60,000. See : Invasion Day: the tide is turning, Lalitha Chelliah & Jacob Andrewartha, Green Left Weekly, February 2, 2018 | Invasion Day marked by thousands of protesters calling for equal rights, change of date, ABC, January 27, 2018 | ‘People are starting to understand’: huge Invasion Day protest stuns Melbourne, Calla Wahlquist, The Guardian, January 26, 2018 | ‘Invasion day’ rally draws crowds as agitator barred from ceremony, Tammy Mills, Gene Efron, Tom Cowie, The Age, January 26, 2018.

Apart from its size, the rally in Melbourne was fairly unremarkable — people assembled, listened to speeches, and marched. A comment by Tarneen Onus-Williams, however, enshrined her as the latest entry in STRAYA’s Hate Week:

“Fuck Australia. Hope it burns to the ground,” Onus-Williams said.

“If you celebrate Australia Day, fucker, you’re celebrating the death of my ancestors. All you fellas with the Australian flag should be so embarrassed with yourself. It’s embarrassing. It’s embarrassing that you celebrate people’s deaths, the people of this land’s death. You make me sick to my stomach.”

In response to the Melbourne rally, Warren Mundine’s Knee demanded that the ‘Koorie Youth Council’/KYC (for which Onus-Williams works as a volunteer) be immediately defunded:

I support moving Australia Day to 1 January. But this lot says “We don’t want to celebrate Australia Day at all.’’ They’re ashamed of Australia. They insult all Australians and Aboriginal people who campaigned for equality & inclusion. Koorie Youth Council should be defunded. I call on Daniel Andrews, Matthew Guy, Senator Richard Di Natale, Bill Shorten MP, Malcolm Turnbull and Senator Nigel Scullion to take all steps necessary to immediately defund KYC[.]

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Note that the principal organiser of the rally was a group called ‘Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance’ (WAR), not the KYC; the KYC later issued a statement reiterating this fact and distancing itself from Onus-Williams’ remarks. See also : Australia Is Tearing Down Another Woman Of Colour For Daring To Have An Opinion, Osman Faruqi, Junkee, January 31, 2018 | The Audacity of Anger, Chelsea Bond, IndigenousX, January 29, 2018.

WAR issued its own response to the kerfuffle, which you can read here, while #IStandWithTarneen became A Thing, and Tarneen elaborated on her views in ‘Invasion day’ rally organiser says her comments Australia should ‘burn to the ground’ should not be taken literally, Melissa Cunningham, Adam Carey, The Age, January 26, 2018.

As The Age report notes, earlier in the day Neil Erikson and ‘Patriot Blue’ — which on this occasion consisted of Neil and a handful of his mates — assembled at Moreland Council chambers in the morning to protest against Creeping Shariah & Cultural Marxism outside a citizenship ceremony; proceeded to the CBD to briefly occupy the steps of Parliament (long after the Invasion Day rally had left the assembly point); before eventually making their way to St Kilda, where the methgoblins of the ‘True Blue Crew’ and the remnants of the ‘United Patriots Front’ — now known as ‘The Lads Society’ — had organised a celebratory BBQ. About 50 or so patriotik volk rocked up. See : No clashes as patriots party with flags, cricket and racist slurs, Tom Cowie, The Age, January 26, 2018 | Fascists frolic on the foreshore, Ben Hillier, Red Flag, January 26, 2018.

local &/or general

In Sydney, the micro-Party for Freedom would appear to be in pretty dire health, with ‘Patriot Blue’ boy George Jameson leaving the group and Nick Folkes handing over the reins to Toby Cook, who’s recently come out as a neo-Nazi:

Some recent articles of interest include:

The neo-Nazi has no clothes: In search of Matt Heimbach’s bogus ‘white ethnostate’, Caitlin Dickson, Yahoo News, February 2, 2018;
Antifa vs. Milo Yiannopoulos: Who won?, Mark Bray, Salon, February 1, 2018 (‘It’s been a year since anti-fascist protests shut down a Yiannopoulos gig at UC Berkeley, to much media criticism’);
An Investigation Into Red-Brown Alliances: Third Positionism, Russia, Ukraine, Syria, And The Western Left, libcom/Ravings Of A Radical Vagabond, February 1, 2018 (‘… is a comprehensive summary of Third Positionist fascist currents old and new, and the successful insertion of their ideas into leftist milieus and alternative media outlets’ — but one which requires some editing for clarity);
The Rise of Australia’s Activist Far Right: How Far Will It Go?, Julie Nathan, ABC Religion and Ethics, January 31, 2018;
How the far right has perfected the art of deniable racism, Gary Younge, The Guardian, January 26, 2018 (‘Electoral successes in Europe and the US are the result of a process whereby bigotry is made palatable’);
A Decade of Resistance, Gabriel Hershman, Eye On Bulgaria, January 24, 2018 (‘Not even 10 years inside has quashed Jock Palfreeman’s spirits. A lesser man might have crumbled. To most people the processes that jailed Palfreeman, and then upheld his conviction for the murder of Andrei Monov, were marked by blatant corruption and lies’);
Postmodernism Did Not Take Place: On Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life, Shuja Haider, Viewpoint, January 23, 2018 (‘A specter is haunting North America — the specter of postmodernism. Or at least, that’s what Jordan Peterson would have you believe. Peterson, a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, has entered into an unholy alliance with all the powers of the alt-right to exorcise this specter. Though he calls himself a “British classical liberal,” Peterson’s appeal feeds into the most reactionary tendencies in contemporary politics’).

Finally, in the US, Samuel Woodward, a member of neo-Nazi grouplet ‘Atomwaffen Division’, has been arrested and charged with the murder of a 19yo Jewish antifascist, Blaze Bernstein. The group has been linked to other murders as well. See : Suspects in five killings reportedly linked to macabre neo-Nazi group, Kyle Swenson, The Washington Post, January 29, 2018 | The Suspect in the Killing of Blaze Bernstein Belonged to a Neo-Nazi Group Allegedly Connected to Four Other Murders, Molly Olmstead, Slate, January 31, 2018 | 1 Neo-Nazi Group. 5 Murders In 8 Months., Christopher Mathias, The Huffington Post, February 1, 2018 (‘The Atomwaffen Division has emerged as one of the most disturbing and volatile hate groups in America.’) | What Is Atomwaffen Division, The Nazi Group Tied To The Murder Of Blaze Bernstein?, Sam Kestenbaum, Forward, February 1, 2018.

BONUS! Pepe

A very rare Pepe made an appearance at the Brisbane Invasion Day rally!

George Christensen & Team Australia ~versus~ Flag-Burning Socialist Ratbags*

flagburners

Poor old George Christensen — who can boast that he is the only federal or state MP to have accepted an invitation to address a Reclaim Australia rally (Mackay, July 19) — has had his complaint to the Human Rights Commission re opposition to Reclaim Australia — specifically, the burning of the Australian flag at a protest in Melbourne on April 4 — dismissed. According to Christensen:

The clowns who burned three Australian flags at a protest on the Easter weekend, protected by a wall of socialist ratbags, have been reported to the Human Rights Commission.

I have been contacted by a number of people who were offended by protesters burning the national symbol during aggressive Socialist Alternative and Socialist [A]lliance protests in Melbourne. Many people were surprised it is not against the law to burn the Australian flag in such a manner and they feel offended and threatened when they see these actions taking place in Australia and broadcast on the news.

I have asked the Racial Discrimination Commissioner to investigate the protests to see if they are unlawful under Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act. According to the Act, it is unlawful to perform any action in public that is likely to offend people of a particular race, religion, or national background. If sections of the Act can be applied to one race or nationality it must apply to all, whether a minority or the majority.

Burning of flags, physical violence, and placards and chants labelling people “racist” were part of a counter-protest attended mostly by university students and members of the Socialist Alternative in response to organised rallies by Reclaim Australia.

Reclaim Australia organised rallies in at least 16 cities around Australia, including Mackay and Townsville, voicing concerns about the rise of Islamic extremism, a push to introduce Sharia law into Australia, and the connections between Halal certification and funding for terrorist organisations.

These were legitimate concerns that were not targeting individuals or a specific religion. Radical Islam is an ideology that has more to do with politics than any religion and certainly has nothing to do with race, but professional protesters have tried to make it about race and engaged in extremely racist and intolerant actions.

It is a shame the Socialist ratbags took such aggressive and racist action to shut down any free speech that doesn’t agree with their own ideology. According to the Left, free speech is a right – as long as you agree with the Left.

The ‘clowns’ in question — aka Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance — released a media statement following the flag burning. See : Warriors of Aboriginal Resistance burns butcher’s apron in defiance of racist ‘Reclaim Australia’ rally, Green Left Weekly, April 9, 2015. The action made the Reclaimers very upset, but this was not the first time WAR had burned the Australian flag as an act of resistance to colonialism and racism. See : Why WAR burned six Australian flags – MEDIA RELEASE, November 20, 2014.

George Christensen: Anti-Reclaim racism claim rejected
The Australian
August 6, 2015

A complaint by government backbencher George Christensen that protesters opposed to a Reclaim Australia rally sought to incite racial hatred has been dismissed by the Australian Human Rights Commission.

Mr Christensen — the only federal Coalition MP to speak at a Reclaim Australia rally — alleged that a group called Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance in April burnt three Australian flags “which, as an Australian, I find to be particularly racist behaviour”.

The Queensland politician argued that the counter-protest breached section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, in that the flag-burning targeted Australians of European descent and was intended to cause offence, insult and humiliation, and dissuade people from joining the rally.

In a letter to the commission, Mr Christensen pre-empted any suggestion the Reclaim Australia rally was racist, saying the movement did not target individuals nor any particular racial group. “As we have seen, Islamic extremists … are not represented by a single race, nor can radical Islam be considered only a religion as it is ideological and as much a political movement as it is a religion,” he wrote.

In response, one of the commission’s case officers acknowledged Mr Christensen’s concerns, but said: “It is unclear how it could be argued that the burning of the Australian flag was done because of your race, colour, or national or ethnic origin, or that of other Australians of European descent more broadly.” No action was taken.

Race Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane last week warned of “organised racist movements” such as Reclaim Australia causing disharmony and urged anyone offended to “seek the protection of laws that prohibit such hatred”.

“At these rallies, far-right, racial-supremacist agitators have been visibly present,” Dr Soutphommasane told an audience at Australian National University. “People with xenophobic political agendas have also been present. Pictures and footage of the rallies clearly show that people sporting Nazi tattoos and other insignia have been openly parading their extremist sympathies.”

He said the “corrupted national pride” that emerged during the Cronulla riots had returned in “a strain of patriotic expression that is tainted with the stain of aggressive nationalism”.

“It is time that we reclaim patriotism,” he said.

For a contrary view on patriotism and nationalism, see : A G A I N S T N A T I O N A L I S M, totaltantrum, April 19/July 19, 2015. See also : Reclaiming (White) Australia? Talk about a redundant exercise, Senthorun Raj, August 6, 2015 | Banal Nationalism | The Continuing Appeal of Nationalism, Fredy Perlman (1984).

“So we say, we always say in the Black Panther Party, that they can do anything they want to us. We might not be back, I might be in jail, I might be anywhere. But when I leave, you can remember I said with the last words on my lips that I am a revolutionary and you’re going to have to keep on saying that. You’re going to have to say that I am a proletariat. I am the people, I’m not the pig. You got to make a distinction.”

~ Fred Hampton (August 30, 1948 – December 4, 1969), executed by the Chicago Police as part of the US federal government’s COINTELPRO. See also : Noam Chomsky & Kathleen Cleaver on Race, Gender and Class Issues – Black Panthers (1997).