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ANZAC Day at Camp Sovereignty April 25, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Camp News.
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SACRED FIRE SMOKING CEREMONY AT CAMP SOVEREIGNTY TO HONOR THE SPIRITS OF AUSTRALIA’S INDIGENOUS WAR HEROES

TUESDAY APRIL 25 2006

 

REMEMBERING OUR ANCESTORS

RECOGNISING OUR LAW

RE INSTITUTING OUR CULTURE

 

As Australia commemorates ANZAC Day, Camp Sovereignty supporters will also remember the Indigenous soldiers who fought and fell in World War battles across history. Community Elders invite peaceful public participation in the Sacred Fire Smoking Ceremony at Camp Sovereignty this Tuesday at dawn and 12.30pm.

 

While the 1909 Defence Act prohibited people not of “substantially European origin” from serving in the Australian armed forces, Aboriginal soldiers were recruited to be fearless frontline warriors. There were better options on the Western Front than available in the reserves at home, where Aboriginal People were still not recognised as citizens and without the right to vote. Indigenous soldiers were paid wages that were only one third of their counterparts’ in the Australian military and were not entitled to any soldier settlements or widows’ pensions despite fighting and dying for their country.

 

Camp Sovereignty Spokesperson Robbie Thorpe remembers his great grandmother’s story, widow of decorated WW1 hero Corporal Harry Thorpe. “They told her she had no need of a soldier’s settlement, like the houses and farms being offered to other Australian military families after the war effort, because the Aboriginal reserve would ‘”look after” her welfare and the children.

Imagine Indigenous soldiers fighting in the trenches alongside fellow Australians then coming home to that? I thought they went to war to stop genocide. The most extreme form of racism is genocide. Where are the stolen wages and settlements? Where are the memorials to remember the hundreds of thousands of Indigenous People who have died defending this country on this land for the last 236 years?

 

If Aboriginal people were to count all the massacres in the true Australian Black history, there would be a continual national day of mourning. There’s a massacre for more than everyday of the year. This country remains a mass murder crime scene until the unresolved, fundamental legal issues of Genocide, Sovereignty and Treaty are settled.

 

The indoctrination of lies that this country was an empty land at the time of colonisation, the lie of Terra Nullius, has led spiritually-challenged society towards a culture of denialism so deep it infects other people’s understanding of the truth.”

The predominant inability of many non-indigenous people to understand Aboriginal Australia’s outrage is beyond comprehension. Its tide of ignorance must be turned before more unborn children inherit accountability for their forefather’s crimes against humanity. Indicators of the true state of Indigenous affairs in this country are the People themselves, with Aboriginal women 11 times more likely to be murdered, and Victorian Aboriginals, who own only .01% of the land, officially rated by the UN as having the second worst quality of life in the world.

 

“For our people the land is, has always been, the only medicine, whether that be in the spiritual or physical sense” says Robbie Thorpe. “At this time, as the environment becomes an increasing concern, it reminds us of our obligation, protecting the land, our Mother, for all life.”

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