Melbourne Marxist groups have begun organizing a repeat performance of their 2019 riots outside the IMARC conference for later this year. The IMARC conference, Australia’s Largest Mining Event, brings together 7000 Mining professionals from more Than 100 Countries and in 2021 will be held from the 25th-27th of October.
The violent 2019 protest (during which conference attendees, police and even police horses were attacked) was primarily organised by Socialist Alternative, Australia’s largest Trotskyist group. The exact same people are planning on doing the exact same thing again. And just like last time almost everyone in the media and establishment is ignoring them or quietly cheering them on.
In August 2019 the announcement of a proposed “Blockade” of the mining conference was made in Socialist Alternative’s “Red Flag” newspaper by long term activist and organiser Sarah Garnham. Ms Garnham also spoke to the Herald Sun newspaper where she stated that the blockade would be “like S11 only for climate”. This was referring to the violent S11 riots outside Crown casino in September 2000 which the Socialist Alternative group also attended and helped organize.
The 2019 IMARC riots were endorsed by the Victorian Greens and three Melbourne councils. Four past and present elected Greens politicians including current leader Adam Bandt made speeches outside the riot in support of the rioters. During the riot Victoria police were forced to take officers away from stations across Melbourne and put plain-clothes officers back in uniform in an attempt to control the openly planned illegal blockade. Over 109 rioters were eventually arrested.
While journalists from across the spectrum refused to point out that IMARC protest organizers and spokespeople such as Sarah Garnham, Jerome Small, Emma Black, Anneke Demanuele, Chris Di Pasquale, Kim Stern, Ridah Hassan, Omar Hassan, Cathy Lewis, Kath Larkin, Natalie Acreman and Elliot Downes were all members of the same Marxist group, there was one notable exception. Andrew Bolt, the much maligned grand old man of the Australian media right was about the only one to mention that the riot which cost so much public time and money was organised by Socialist Alternative, a group that openly states that they wish to overthrow the government.
Not only did the vast majority of the media not mention the extremist links of those organizing the riot, many of them even helped Socialist Alternative activist Kim Stern to harass police officers in the aftermath. Prime Minister Scott Morrison was clueless as usual, declaring that the government would implement laws against “environmental groups targeting businesses or firms involved in the mining sector”.
Back in 2019 the “Blockade IMARC” rioters organised their event at Trades Hall and in the main building of RMIT University. This year their first organizing meeting in early May was held at the “SiteWorks” complex. Siteworks is a former primary school in the heart of Brunswick owned by Moreland City Council. Moreland Council was one of the three councils that publicly announced support for the 2019 riots and contains Councillor Sue Bolton, a Marxist activist of thirty years standing and the current co-convener of the Socialist Alliance.
The Blockade IMARC alliance website states that their objective is to illegally shut down, subvert and disrupt the entirely legal IMARC conference. Their stated “alliance members” include Socialist Alternative front groups (Campaign Against Racism and Fascism, Uni Students for Climate Justice, Victorian Socialists), tiny single issue organisations (Philippines Australia Solidarity Association, Animal Activists Australia), Front groups for other Marxist organisations (Stand Together Against Racism a front for Socialist Alternative’s smaller rival group Solidarity), groups that Socialist Alternative has infiltrated such as Extinction Rebellion Australia, and serial pests with small numbers jumping at the chance for larger scale chaos like Frontline Action on Coal and the Whistleblowers, Activists and Communities Alliance.
In 2019 The Unshackled reported the IMARC riot being planned months before it occurred, predicted which people and groups would be behind it, and predicted that the vast majority of the media would ignore the extremist links to the organizers and their increasing levels of support among supposedly mainstream sections of the wider left. I see absolutely no reason to doubt (COVID lockdowns permitting) that the exact same scenario will play out again this year.
170 years ago a fat, lazy, bearded German fellow wrote that “history repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce”. I guess he got one thing right.