People's Issues

 
 


Land. Life. Language. Liberation: Sovereign Peoples’ struggle intensifies

Louisa L.

Sovereignty and Treaty lie at the heart of building socialism in this continent.

Throwing off colonial shackles is unfinished business along the path to socialism, but it’s impossible without Treaty, a concept encompassing the myriad of Treaties, first between Sovereign Peoples themselves, then with people’s organisations and much later with government.

An Australia based on invasion and theft, cannot progress to a republic of any worth, with its own independent institutions emerging from struggle, let alone independence from corporate rule or socialism.  

Over a year ago, Narungga Elder, Tauto Sansbury said that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples were ‘being cut into pieces,’ but that Treaty marked a way forward no matter how long it took to achieve. 

Sovereign Peoples have long highlighted John Howard as the godfather of constitutional recognition, his aim to undermine the 30-year united demand by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples for Treaty’s fundamental change. 

First Nations’ leaders and groups like Sovereign Union have outlined constitutional recognition’s legal potential to destroy Sovereignty, never ceded in 230 years of invasion and illegal occupation.

Since then, Sovereign Peoples’ fightback has made in-roads even within the massively-funded Recognise roadshow, which continues as invitation only, locking out those First Peoples who disagree.

Burning brighter
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples reject deals done behind closed doors. 

While First Nations caution that current treaties being discussed with governments have grave dangers too, Elders have inspired the young to take the fight for unity forward. Their grass roots’ organisations ignite powerful and intensified struggles.

National Unity Government organised the five-day Sovereignty Workshop just held in Canberra in conjunction with the Frontier Wars March on April 25.

At Uluru soon, a national Recognise gathering will be met by many elected delegates standing for Sovereignty and Law. While they may be outnumbered by pro-Recognise elected and centrally appointed delegates, they will build on spirit of the Wave Hill Walk Off’s 50th Anniversary gathering of 2016.

The Tent Embassy’s fire is burning brighter, its slogan, ‘Land. Life. Language. Liberation’, pinpointing the heart of struggle and the reparations Treaty must bring. 

Young people build struggle through Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance, drawing 50,000 people onto Melbourne streets and round the country on Invasion Day, and through FISTT, Fighting In Solidarity Towards Treaties.

In these, and other organisations and numerous smaller events across the country, new leaders are created in struggle, not by corporate training packages. 

Both Elders and young people are targeting corporations and capitalism. They reject division and disunity. 

Inheritors of invasion
The inheritors of invasion, multinationals, organised and led by the Business Council of Australia, are the chief source of division amongst Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. 

This Business Council drive to disunity has many aspects, detailed in a forthcoming Spirit of Eureka publication recently seen by Vanguard, and soon to be available for download from http://www.spiritofeureka.org/.

For years Sovereign Union, among others, has consistently highlighted one aspect, the use of Recognise to create a corporate-backed mass movement, undermining the pre-existing demand for Treaty by Sovereign Peoples.

Currently over 300,000 Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and organisations are registered supporters of Recognise, the overwhelming majority of them oblivious of the BCA’s agenda.

Sovereign Peoples not only have much to teach about how to live sustainably on this continent. They have survived violent invasion and dispossession, yet still they organise and struggle. They have done this under the most difficult circumstances imaginable since 1788. 
While unease and outright fear grip many Australians as new-style fascism grows, Sovereign Peoples have 230 years of collective lessons of courage, unity and refusal to accept dictatorship. Sovereign Peoples find strength in the experience and tenacity of Elders and in the energy and fire of youth. We all have much to learn. 

Alongside a reorganised, reinvigorated, fighting movement of non-Indigenous Australians led by the working class, united Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples have a power and strength far beyond their small numbers. It’s time to listen to and learn from them. It’s time to organise and fight. 

 

 

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