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First noticed that old Right Wing theme favourite “Tough on Crime” reemerging in Alice Springs, Northern Territory (NT). A racist little Facebook effort called Action for Alice 2020

“Tough on Crime’s” kamerad “Law and Order” is omnipresent in Australia. It has a tendency to flare up in areas where Aboriginal people have a substantial population. Occasionally, another ethnic group will excite the Law and Order lobby but Aboriginal people are a perennial favourite.

The narrative is an old one. It consists of hard working White Aussie battlers trying to live their lives productively in communal harmony but faced with a problem.

Generally, these “white uprisings” are led by a businessman, in this instance Action for Alice founder and baker Darren Clarke. Darren is of course, just another battler having a go, with only Federal grants (one totalling nearly $1,000,000) to help him keep his head above water.1

A previous “Action for Alice” group was forced to remove racist advertisements portraying Aboriginal people as criminals from the local Imparja television in 2016. These “white blindfold” movements are backed and amplified by the rightwing media.2

Sometimes a media “personality” will even take charge themselves. Peta Credlin has seized the lead role in this latest iteration.

The Problem

The problem is of course those aforementioned Aboriginal people. They’ve been loitering around Alice Springs and causing the decent honest hardworking Aussie folks all sorts of trouble for about 40,000 years.

Acting as though they are apart(heid) from the Alice Springs community, its culture and aspirations.

Wait. Hang on. Further research suggests the conflicts between the Abo­rig­i­nal people and those poor beleaguered white folk are relatively recent.

That really does change the narrative.

Strangely, it’s a point that has been almost exempt from the reports in the media that concentrate on Aboriginal crime and the “unaccountable” acting out of Aboriginal youth.


The real problem?

The Aboriginal Arrernte people the tra­di­tion­al cus­to­di­ans of Mparn­twe (later named Alice Springs) were living in harmony with the land and not bothering anyone else for about 40,000 years. They had a long-established culture, laws and most importantly a sense of purpose and control over their own lives.

This all changed with the invasion of Europeans who enacted brutal genocidal measures to steal the land from the Aboriginal people. An entire continent. Occupied by other Aboriginal groups for as long as 65,000 years.

“Genocide in Australia” is a taboo subject. As is racism and (for different reasons) reparations, justice and Aboriginal self-determination.

A. Killing members of the group

B. Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group

C. Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part

D. Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group

E. Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group…

…is genocide. Australia fulfills the criteria with ease and continues to do so.

“Many will argue that state-sanctioned physical violence has not ended as many First Nations people still die at the hands of police or in police custody. This was highlighted by the 1991 Deaths in Custody report by the Office of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission. Today one First Nations person is killed in circumstances involving police every 28 days.”Genocide in Australia – Nathan mudyi Sentance is a Wiradjuri librarian and essayist

A total lack of accountability for the many and continued killings of Aboriginal people, indicate that the talk-fests of reconciliation have yet to break the link to our brutal genocidal past.


Just as it took longer for Aboriginal people to settle the Mparn­twe regions in the red centre, so did it take some time for Europeans to invade the Arrernte lands. They only sighted the region in 1862. The area’s White pop­u­la­tion did not grow sig­nif­i­cant­ly until the dis­cov­ery of allu­vial gold in 1887.

In a moment of this land’s inhabited history – the racist, genocidal, avaricious Europeans (who devastated the world’s oldest continuing living culture), have somehow gone from being perpetrators of genocide – to victims of the consequences it has wreaked.

The same people occupying stolen land and reaping the wealth from their occupation.

Whereas, the traditional owners continue to experience the worst social/health outcomes and living conditions of everyone occupying their lands.

This writer3 has an almost total lack of sympathy for the selfish, puerile – and yes, racist lamentations of people who ignore historical context, are clearly bereft of empathy and eschew any responsibility for current events.



1 One of Darren Clarke’s predecessors Gary Hall was described as “unhinged” and “a deluded, violent racist” by the Northern Irish press.

“This was after he was convicted of a raft of criminal offences Down Under while at the same time boasting to this newspaper about attempts to form a UVF-style unit in Oz.

An interview in which he threatened to “kneecap” criminals and branded Aborigines “rapists” was central to the Australian government sending him back home.

Hall also admitted setting up the AVF (Alice Springs Volunteer Force) vigilante gang, which he modelled on the UVF. (Ulster Volunteer Force)

Rejecting his visa application, the Australian government said he was likely to “engage in criminal conduct”, “harass, intimidate, molest or stalk another person”, and “vilify a section of the community”.

In a damning assessment, officials added: “(You) represent a danger to the Australian community whether by way of being liable to become involved in activities that are disruptive, or in violence threatening harm.”

Hall’s criminal record while living in the town of Alice Springs in the Australian outback was also taken into consideration. His rap sheet includes multiple breaches of domestic violence orders, harassment, drink driving and making false police reports.”Crackpot who tried to set up paramilitary gang in Australia back in NI after being deported – Domestic abuser back home after years down under – Ciaran Barnes – Belfast Telegraph

2 “White blindfold” is a rebuttal to John Howard’s “Black armband of history” (stolen from Geoffrey Blainey).

3 The author worked as a roofer on the Alice Springs Casino and Sheraton hotel during the ’80s.


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