Martin Hartwig covered the 2019 Brisbane ‘Invasion Day’ protests and bore witness to the rhetoric and tactics being employed in an attempt to ‘change the date’.
Recent years have seen an emboldened Far-Left coalition of marginalized refugee, migrant, LGBT+ and Indigenous people push harder and more passionately to shift the narrative towards Australia Day being a celebration of genocide, colonialism and white Australia.
In their failure to weaponize and co-opt the working class, the middle class self styled ‘intellectual’ revolutionary vanguard of Anarchist/Communists, Greens and Socialists have instead set their designs upon the aforementioned groups as the vehicle for the overthrow of their perceived oppressors.
Using a number of issue-based front groups as meticulously documented by my esteemed colleague and prolific Associate Editor of the The Unshackled Lucas Rosas, these extremist elements seek to dismantle and undermine Australia.
One such group ‘Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance – WAR’ pops up every Australia Day to make noise about perceived grievances and engage in rent seeking behaviour.
In previous years’ photographic documentation of WAR protests I recall seeing NZ Motorcycle Gang ‘Mongrel Mob’ whose patches frequently feature swastikas. Members in attendance were proudly displaying their colours and throwing their weight behind the cause. Below there are some photos of last year’s ‘Invasion Day’ event, here is a video of Mongrel Mob doing a Haka.
Curious to see if they would show up again this year I decided to venture into what was highly likely to be hostile territory to document this year’s events. They were notably absent, perhaps because last year they were declared ‘Identified Organisation’ by the Queensland government.
The event was slated to begin at 10am on January 26 with attendees assembling at Emma Miller Place inn the CBD, a few hundred metres from City Hall. With 3.9k Facebook users listed as attending or interested it was looking to be another bumper turnout.
The event description was as follows.
“For First Nations people, January 26th 1788 marked the start of genocide, dispossession, displacement, and oppression.
January 26th is not a day to celebrate a country built on these atrocities. It’s not a day to embrace white nationalism or colonialism. January 26th is a day to protest!
Join First Nations People in Meanjin and around the continent in our fight for justice and rights. #AbolishAustraliaDay #InvasionDay2019 #KeepTheFireBurning #FuckTheDateChangeTheSystem
We will be gathering at Emma Miller Place (Roma Steet Forum), Roma Street at 10am, starting speeches at 10:30, and marching through the city and South Bank at 11:30am.
This event will be held on the lands of the Jagera, Yuggera, Yuggerapul and Turrbul people. We acknowledge that sovereignty was never ceded, this land was never ceded, and it always was, and always will be Aboriginal Land.”
Upon arrival I was shocked by the temperature. I craved the comfort of air conditioning but persevered regardless.
On display were an array of placards and banners that had been made by community members at the Jagera Community Center at Musgrave park the previous Saturday, at an even hosted by WAR.
Signs included: “Abolish Australia, Pay the Rent, Fuck your Apology, Abolish Prisons, Australia does not exist, Yellow Peril Supports Black Power, Burn Australia to the Ground”
A number of heated speeches went on for some time before a traditional dance was performed and the Aboriginal Riders Association led the procession through the city.
Attendees marches across the Victoria Bridge, through the cultural center busway and on to Musgrave Park where a BBQ was held.
Upon crossing the Victoria Bridge I spotted Greens Councillor for the Gabba Ward Johnathan Sri, carrying a banner saying “Abolish Australia”, one of the women carrying the banner with him began to target me simply for filming. Repeatedly and aggressively asking me where I was from.
Unfortunately at the beginning of this interaction my GoPro batteries were flat so I wasn’t filming. I learned a valuable lesson ABC ‘Always Be Capturing’ This woman also yelled ‘FUCK COPS’ much to the bemusement of the many police present to ensure the safety of the attendees and public.
This anti-police sentiment was prominent through the entirety of the march. Many chants of “No Justice, No Peace, No racist Police, No Justice, No Peace, Fuck the Police.” No Mongrel Mob or flag burnings this year.
The Invasion Day attendees marched on to Musgrave Park for a BBQ and I had enough footage so I left. I estimate the attendance to be in the range of 2,000-4,000 people.