Gideon Polya, “Australia’s Secret Genocide History. La Trobe, “Bundoora Eucalyptus” & Black Crimes of White Australia”, MWC News, 30 April 2008.
For an image of the huge “Bundoora Eucalyptus” painting see: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/4318154968/ .
Revised and updated, 2010.
Australia’s Secret Genocide History. La Trobe, “Bundoora Eucalyptus” & Black Crimes of White Australia.
La Trobe University, Bundoora, Melbourne is one of Australia’s top dozen universities with particular expertise in paramedical training and an excellent reputation for research and teaching in the humanities and biological sciences in particular. The main campus is set in beautiful bushland about 20 kilometers north of Melbourne at Bundoora. Bundoora means “the country kangaroos like” in the local Indigenous Australian Wurrundjeri language and indeed one can often see kangaroos grazing and hopping about in the outskirts of La Trobe University in the evening and early morning.
La Trobe University is named after a former Lieutenant-Governor of Victoria, Charles Joseph La Trobe (1801-1875), who administered the colony of Victoria from 1839-1854. However there are 2 sides to this man that reflect a continuing dichotomy of good and evil in Australia as a whole. Thus Charles La Trobe was a gentle, cultured man and a mountaineer, adventurer and writer. However he was a poor administrator and his rule over the British colony of Victoria was associated with 2 major failures: (1) the Eureka Stockade rebellion of gold miners that was brutally put down by British soldiers and (2) the expansion of the Aboriginal Genocide with ethnic cleansing of Indigenous (Aboriginal) people involving the notorious Native Police set up under La Trobe. This paradoxical good/evil duality is perhaps behind the statue of Charles La Trobe at La Trobe University that is exhibited standing on its head!
The beautiful La Trobe Bundoora landscape with its wonderful gum trees (Eucalyptus species), birds and kangaroos is the inspiration for my huge (1.3 metres x 2.9 metres) “Bundoora Eucalyptus” painting which also illustrates the dark/light, good/evil dichotomy of Charles La Trobe and of Australia as a whole. On the one hand Australia is a prosperous, educated, democratic society that was one of the first countries to have women’s suffrage, trade unions, and compulsory State-provided education. On the other hand, Australia has a shocking secret history of involvement in appalling genocides that continues to this day. Thus in 2008 Australia is involved in Palestinian Genocide, Iraqi Genocide, Afghan Genocide, Biofuel Genocide and Climate Genocide.
Before going further it must be clearly stated that the term “Genocide” used here is “Genocide” as precisely defined by Article 2 of the UN Genocide Convention (see: http://www.edwebproject.org/sideshow/genocide/convention.html ): “In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such: 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.”
Further, in assessing deaths from particular policies of invasion, occupation and dispossession one notes that deaths can be violent (from bombs and bullets) or non-violent (from deprivation and deprivation-exacerbated disease). Both kinds of avoidable death (death that should not have happened) are included within the term “excess death” used below (see “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007).
The following catalogue of Australian involvement in Genocide as defined by the UN Genocide Convention – and notably in British- and American-imposed genocides - is given below in roughly chronological order from 1788 (the year of European Invasion and First Settlement) to 2008. A key reference is my book “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950”; other relevant books are Chalk, F. and Jonassohn, K. (1990), The History and Sociology of Genocide. Analyses and Case Studies (Yale University Press, New Haven & London); Tatz, C. (2003), With Intent to Destroy. Reflecting on Genocide (Verso, London); and Blum, W. (2006), Rogue State, A guide to the world’s only superpower (Zed Books, London)).
1. 18th-19th century Aboriginal Genocide (the Indigenous Aboriginal population dropped from about 1 million to 0.1 million in the first century after invasion in 1788).
2. Tasmanian Aboriginal Genocide (the “full-blood” Indigenous population dropped from 6,000 to zero in 1803-1776; however there are several thousand “mixed race” decendants of Tasmanian and Mainland Aborigines still living in Tasmania today).
3. British Indian Genocide (post-invasion excess deaths 0.6 BILLION, 1757-1837; 0.5 BILLION, 1837-1901 under Queen Victoria; 0.4 BILLION, 1901-1947.
4. European Chinese Genocide (10-100 million deaths in the European imperialism-driven Tai Ping rebellion period; Australia was involved in suppressing the Boxer rebellion).
5. Maori Genocide (Maori population dropped from 0.1-0.2 million in 1800 to 42,000 in 1893; Australia was involved in the 19th century Maori wars).
6. African Genocide (scores of million perished over 5 centuries of European slavery and colonialism; Australians participated in the Sudan War, 1881-1898).
7. Pacific Genocide (there was a catastrophic population decline due to introduced disease and slavery; thus 40,000 Fijians died from measles out of a population of 150,000 in 1876; “blackbirding” slavery was conducted by Australians in the late 19th century).
8. Boer (Afrikaaner) Genocide (1899-1902; 28,000 Afrikaaner women and children died in British concentration camps; Australians participated in the Boer War as immortalized in the movie “Breaker Morant”).
9. Armenian Genocide (1.5 million killed; the Australian invasion of Gallipoli as part of an Anglo-French force in 1915 helped to precipitate this atrocity; indeed April 24 is Armenian Genocide Day and April 25 is the day of the Australia invasion in 1915 and also a sacred war dead remembrance day for Australians and New Zealanders – it is called Anzac Day after the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) which stormed ashore on that first Anzac Day at Gallipoli in 1915).
10. Bengali Genocide (6-7 million perished in the “forgotten” man-made Bengal Famine atrocity in Bengal and adjoining provinces in British India, 1943-1945; Australians were there and indeed the Governor of Bengal in 1944 was an Australian, R.G. Casey: http://www.open2.net/thingsweforgot/bengalfamine_programme.html ).
11. British post-1950 Third World Genocide (1950-2005 excess deaths in countries subject to British occupation as a major occupier in the post-war era totalled 727 million; Australia has the same Head of State as the UK and continues to be a loyal military ally of the UK in Occupied Iraq and Occupied Afghanistan).
12. US post-1950 Third World Genocide (1950-2005 excess deaths in countries subject to US occupation as a major occupier in the post-war era totalled 82 million; Australia participated in all post-1950 US Asian Wars in Korea, Indo-China, Iraq and Afghanistan with Indigenous Asian excess deaths now totalling 25 million).
13. Australian Colonial Genocide (1950-2005 excess deaths in countries subject to Australian occupation as a major occupier in the post-war era, namely Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands totalled 2.1 million).
14. 20th century Aboriginal Genocide (total excess deaths clearly of the order of 1million; 0.1 million Stolen Generations Aboriginal children forcibly removed from their Mothers in the 19th and 20th centuries; excess deaths in the 11 years of the Bush-ite Coalition Government totalled 90,000 for 1996-2007).
The following Australian genocide involvements in this catalogue of horrors are ON-GOING.
15. Palestinian Genocide (post-1967 excess deaths 0.3 million, post-1967 under-5 infant deaths 0.2 million and 7 million refugees; with bi-partisan agreement Australia provides diplomatic, financial and haven support for Israeli state terrorism – even when directed against tens of thousands of Australian citizens as in Lebanon in mid-2006 - and up to life imprisonment for anyone giving support to the Hamas Party that overwhelmingly won the 2006 Occupied Palestinian elections).
16. Iraqi Genocide (4.4 million excess deaths 1990-2010; 2.5 million post-invasion excess deaths, 0.9 million post-invasion under-5 infant deaths and 5-6 million refugees; Australia militarily involved since 1990(as of December 2009).
17. Afghan Genocide (3-7 million post-invasion excess deaths, 2.3 million post-invasion under-5 infant and 4 million refugees; Australia involved militarily since 2001).
18. Ongoing Aboriginal Genocide (9,000 excess deaths annually; 90,000 excess deaths in the last 11 years of Bush-ite Coalition rule).
19. Biofuel Genocide (16 million die avoidably each year but this is increasingly biofuel-impacted as the legislatively-mandated US, UK and EU biofuel perversion forces up global food prices; Australia is a major sugar cane grower and sugar exporter with 60% of sugar going to bioethanol production worldwide; Australia has biofuel-promoting legislation and is a major canola grower, this being a major source for biodiesel ).
20. Climate Genocide (16 million die avoidably each year ALREADY from deprivation and deprivation-exacerbated disease; Professor James Lovelock FRS says that over 6 billion will perish this century die to unaddressed climate change; on a per capita basis Australia is among the very worst greenhouse gas (GHG) polluters – in terms of 2004 figures for “fossil fuel-derived annual per capita CO2 pollution” Australia is about 40 times worse than INDIA and 160 times worse than Bangladesh if you include Australia’s world number 1 coal exports).
Yet politically correct racist (PC racist) Australia steadfastly “looks the other way” and its past and present involvements in the above atrocities are overwhelmingly NOT reported by racist, lying, holocaust-ignoring Mainstream media NOR taught in Australia’s schools and universities. PC racist White Australia just cannot see the “Elephant in the room” – its continuing involvement in over 2 centuries of horrendous genocide.
Australians are trapped in an Orwellian dream - Australia will only stop doing it when it is INFORMED that it is doing it. Please inform everyone you can.