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Camp Sovereignty – 60 days of Peace May 13, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis, Camp News.

Lisa has posted an excellent summary of how Camp Sovereignty went, along with an on-the-spot report of the last night at Melbourne Indymedia. It's so good in fact, we're going to reproduce it here:



Genocide, Sovereignty and Treaty April 27, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis, Camp News, Facts.

While most of the press you will see about Camp Sovereignty is focussed on the superficial issues, there are of course some deep issues that Camp Sovereignty is there to talk about, and make moves towards reconciling. Most significantly is the issue of jurisdiction (thus the name Camp Sovereignty).

Below is a piece complied by one of our supporters containing information provided by Robbie Thorpe, who probably knows more about the legal and constitutional issues surrounding Australia’s history than anyone else. We hope you read this piece and learn a bit more about the historical reasons that Camp Sovereignty was set up, and why it is still there, keeping the Fire and the Spirit alive! (more…)

Stephen Hagan on Camp Sovereignty April 26, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis.

Some of you who have been supporters of Camp Sovereignty for a while now might remember Stephen Hagan who launched his book "Australia's Blackest Sporting Moments: The Top 100" (which we highly recommend reading!) at Camp during the first couple of days that we were there.

Stephen is an excellent writer and has written a piece on his experience at Camp Sovereignty, including some wonderful insights into our Fire Keeper, Robert Corowa. This piece is primarily a discussion about Stephen's experiences of coming to melbourne for two very different types of Indigenous gatherings and contains some really interesting discussion.

Check it out.

An interesting article in the Age April 24, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis.
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Ben Haywood has put together a piece called "Fiery Debate" which was in yesterday's paper (we think).

It is an attempt to draw together some of the facts of what has been going on at Camp Sovereignty, which is nice to see, although some of the facts aren't quite the truth. (more…)

“There’s something going on, and you don’t know what it is, do you, Mr. Bolt.” April 23, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis.
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"The following is a letter I wrote the Herald Sun Editors recently in response to a ridiculously inflamatory article written by their arch-conservative Andrew Bolt about Camp Sovereignty. "

So says Tim over at Undergrowth. Check out the rest of the post to see his brilliant response to the crap from Andrew Bolt.

For those of you who don't know Tim, he's the one that with Krusty put together the fantastic doco on the Black GST.  If you haven't seen it yet, check it out!

More crap from the Scum.. April 23, 2006

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The Herald Sun has another great 'informative' story in the paper today.

Aside from continuing to report the false line that protesters are wanting to " "sue" white trespassers" for entering Camp Sovereignty, they are starting on the line of how much it is costing the taxpayer to control the site. And of course they are implying that it is the fault of the Fire watchers that this is happening.

So lets take a look at this for a second. A couple of weeks ago, we had a fully functioning campsite which was supporting the Scared Fire and all those required to look after it. We were also providing for the first time, a place in Melbourne where people – Indigenous and non-Indigenous – could come and expereince true Aboriginal culture, for free, right in the heart of Melbourne. It was a place attracting thousands of visitors and it was completely self-sufficient.

The Council could have seen this as a brilliant opportunity and maybe invested some of the $300 million dollars it has earmarked for an Aboriginal Cultural Centre for the small stone hut we were asking for as a shelter (which someone is designing for us as we speak) for the Fire Keepers and set the site up permanently. The benefits for Melbourne could have been huge.


Some real news for a change April 20, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis.

Every time we get a tad sick of all the negative, sensationalist media coverage of Camp Sovereignty, someone comes along and writes something with an actual analysis as to what's going on at Camp Sovereignty in relation to the history of colonisation in Australia.

This piece by Graham Ring in the National Indigenous Times is one of those pieces. We recommend you read it if you want to know what's really going on!

More accurate reporting? April 18, 2006

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Sure you've all read the stories around the traps about the fines applicable under the Act which is now protecting the Sacred Fire. We can assure you all that most of them are false!

We've heard all sorts of stories in the press:

Aboriginal Protesters Charging People To Walk In Park!

$50 000 for Going Near Protesters!

Fines for Visiting Fire Under Dubious Legal Authority

And all sorts of crap like the above headlines.

For those of you out there interested in the truth. There are signs around the border of the Sacred Fire now informing people that the Fire is under legal protection under the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Act 1984. The signs contain the following text:


Offence to contravene declaration

(1) A person is guilty of an offence if:

(a) the person engages in conduct; and

(b) the conduct contravenes the terms of a declaration under this Part relating to an Aboriginal place.


(a) if the person is a natural person—$10,000 or imprisonment for 5 years, or both; or

(b) if the person is a body corporate—$50,000.

(2) A person is guilty of an offence if:

(a) the person engages in conduct; and

(b) the conduct contravenes the terms of a declaration under this Part relating to an Aboriginal object.


(a) if the person is a natural person—$5,000 or imprisonment for 2 years, or both; or

(b) if the person is a body corporate—$25,000.

(3) In this section:

"engage in conduct" means:

(a) do an act; or

(b) omit to perform an act.

The reason those signs were put up was in the interests of informing the public (and the authorities) what the Emergency Declaration means in terms of offences under the act. Since there has been a constant stream of people in the media, on talkback radio etc talking about going to camp to extinguish the fire, it was decided that there needed to be some education as to what risks people would be taking in doing so – other than the seriously evil energy that they would be bringing into their life for messing with a Sacred Fire!

But of course the media isn't interested in educating or informing the public so instead we got stories like the absolutely atrocious story on Channel 10 which said that Aboriginal Protesters were planning on charging people $10,000 each to enter Kings Domain. Utter bullshit. Normally one would put that down to lazy journalism, but that story was so bad, it should be called intentional malicious lies.


Take the Blame April 16, 2006

Posted by campsovereignty in Analysis.

A stonkingly good letter on The Age site in repsonse to the series on Alice Springs.  Love the analysis in this one, onya John!

How could any responsible government expect indigenous people, with no wealth, poor education and no job prospects, which in any society leads to high levels of violence and crime, to create anything less than a ghetto? Pointing the finger at indigenous groups for facilitating this situation is outrageous.

Australia was founded on the back of colonial conquest. People living here were forcibly removed from their traditional homelands, which supported them with food and water, into areas that can't support communities. These nations were evicted, killed and forced into labour; assimilation was used as an excuse to separate families.

These people have had their cultures ripped apart and their families decimated. They are fighting for survival. On the other side, Australia has extracted billions of dollars from these lands. The pitiful handouts given to indigenous survivors are wrapped around oppressive bureaucracies where white Australians make a living from their misery.

It is now up to this and following governments to stand up and show the world exactly where they stand politically and what manner of people we stand for as a culture. Fundamental to moving forwards is the urgent need for a treaty with the indigenous people.
John Davis, Melbourne

Celebrating the Stolenwealth Games campaign April 3, 2006

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Celebrating the Stolenwealth Games campaign
A public meeting to reflect on the Black GST campaign was held at Trades Hall in Carlton on Sunday 2nd April. There was a fantastic presence of many of those who were involved in the lead up to and the maintenance of the campaign. Independent film footage was screened, Bart Willoughby, Wayne Thorpe and Colin Campbell gave the gift of music, and Targan, Marji Thorpe, Robbie Thorpe and Clare Land all spoke of their reflections on the campaign, the achievement of the major aims, and offered thanks to all involved. Photos from the campaign were also on display.

Send in your footage, photos, sound recordings, reflections etc


The Black GST

PO Box 4320

University of Melbourne PO


VIC 3052