Invasion Day in Brisbane: Murri Activists rally and march, and S/Snr Sgt Hurley will be charged with manslaughter over Mulrunji's death
At 10am on Friday, January 26th, Murri (Queensland Australian Aboriginal) activists organised a rally and march for 'Invasion Day'.
January 26th is a public holiday in Australia, for 'Australia Day', the anniversary of European settlement at Sydney Cove in 1788. Aborignes for many years have organised protests, since they feel they have little to celebrate.
At the 2007 Brisbane rally, at Parliament House, George St, lawyer Andrew Boe announced that police Snr Sgt Chris Hurley will be charged with manslaughter over the death of Aborignal man Mulrunji in a police cell on Palm Island, North Qld, in 2004.
If you click on any of the photos in this article, you will go to where the photo is stored on flickr, where you can see different sizes and download any photos you want to use. See the end of this article for the Creative Commons licence.
UPDATE: Leftcast's article on Invasion Day has 15 minutes of sound recordings from the rally.
Because Dave Riley at Leftcast has chosen to use Odeo Studio to store the audio, it is very easy for me to put it on this website - press play to listen:
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Approaching Parliament House, George St. Click here to see the exact location of Parliament House.
Sign on corner of George and Alice Sts.
Police dirt bikes outside corner gate of Parliament House, Cnr George and Alice Sts.
On the phone.
Socialist Alternative stall.
Steve Hitchens protesting outside Parliament House about the Muddy Bay development in Airlie Beach, North Qld.
International Socialist Organisation selling the Socialist Worker at their stall.
Socialist Alliance stall.
Socialist Alliance signs for the march.
Police on corner of George and Alice Sts, opposite Parliament House.
T-Shirt sellers on corner of George and Alice Sts, adjacent to Parliament House.
Socialist Alliance's Jim McIlroy.
Preparing a banner.
Getting ready to film.
Sam Watson discusses arrangements with police.
Inspector in charge (right of photo), and Senior Sergeant who appeared to be acting as his XO.
Secondary inspector and his Senior Sergeant. This inspector took charge of the van of the march, while the inspector in the previous photo (in the formal cap, not the baseball cap) appeared to be the one in overall charge. I was surprised to see the police violating the principle of unity of command - that is, the idea that there should only be one person in charge, who should be the highest rank present.
What would happen, for instance, if the two inspectors gave contradictory orders?
Of course, it's possible that the police have some system to get over this.
Police officers, road bikes and patrol car on George St, near cnr of Alice St.
Police on Alice St side of 80 George St, which contains Parliamentary offices and accommodation.
Sam Watson opened the rally. He mentioned the ceremony that had been held at 7am that morning, where Dundalee was remembered. Dundalee was an Aboriginal warrior who fought white encroachment and was hanged in 1855, on the site of what is now the Brisbane General Post Office on Queen St - click here for the exact location.
Watson called for a moment's silence to remember the 'great men and women who struggled' for Aboriginal rights. He also spoke of indigenous 'warriors and patriots' and non-indigenous people who had helped in the struggle, or who died in it.
He made a particular point of noting both the Jagara and Turrbul people, who come from the area that is now Brisbane.
Lionel Fogarty sings. This was the same song that he sang at the November 18th 2006 rally. A recording of him singing on November 18 is here: just press play to listen.
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Lawyer for the Palm Island council, Andrew Boe, announces that police S/Sgt Chris Hurley will be charged with manslaughter over the death of Mulrunji in a police cell on Palm Island in 2004.
Audience and 4 bicycle police.
Uncle Des Sandy, a Jagara elder speaks. He welcomed all elders, making a special point to welcome non-indigenous elders and leaders.
He said: "You are an honorary member of my tribe - for today only. Tomorrow I might chase you down the street with a spear".
Uncle Des also acknowledged the Turrbul people.
Teenagers with banner.
Bobby Weatherall spoke, and demanded a end to the 'undeclared war against Aboriginal people'.
"We are sovereign nations, we always have been and we never ceded it".
He talked about how non-Aboriginal people celebrate 'the privileges they have gained' at Australia Day celebrations, while Aboriginal people 'wait for running water and a proper house'.
He also said "We know about lawyers justice, and we know we're not a part of it".
Brother Lyle Monroe speaks. He was born in Moree, and now is from The Block in Redfern, Sydney. First of all, he mentioned the death of TJ Hickey in Redfern, which many Aboriginal people suspect was caused by police.
He said that "Today should be the unity of the East Coast". He said the East Coast Aboriginals have to re-unite: "If we don't there is no future".
Brother Lyle called for a one-day sit-down/stop-work protest by Aboriginal police liason officers. He also demanded to know what had happened to all the barristers and solicitors who learned their trade of criminal law in the Aboriginal Legal Services. "Open your mouths, or forever shut them!". He particularly criticised Warren Mundine and Linda Birney.
He said that January 26th is "no longer a day of black survival, no longer a day of black musicians entertaining people in the park and selling trinkets".
He also called on Aboriginal people to 'remember the great leaders, Jack Patton, Bill Ferguson and William Cooper'.
Sister Vicky speaks. She said that there is "no justice in Queensland for Aboriginal people", but:
Never give up the fight
Never give up the marches
Never give up the rallies
Never give up the protests
Never, NEVER, give up!
Sister Betty Munro speaks. She criticised the Sydney black leadership, saying that Sydney had become the cradle of black conservatism, where once it had been the cradle of black radicalism. That is why, she said, it was 'important to be here today':
"You are still standing and still fighting".
Van of the march heads up George St, - 80 George St (Parliamentary offices and accommodation) in background.
Click here to see the route of the march.
Senator for Queensland Andrew Bartlett of the Australian Democrats marching along George St.
Rear of the march heads up George St near Parliament House, including two women from 'Fair Go For Palestine'.
Van of march approaches State Administration Centre, 100 George St - click here to see the exact location.
Speaker at State Administration Centre, 100 George St.
Police Cavalry at corner of George St and Queen St Mall - click here to see the exact location.
Identification markings on Police horse.
Van of march approaches cnr of George St and Queen St Mall.
March passes cnr of George St and Queen St Mall.
"Never Stand When You Can Sit, Never Sit When You Can Lie Down" - police officer waits for march to approach cnr of George and Herschel Sts - click here to see the exact location.
(I think its an old Army saying, perhaps?)
Van of march approaches cnr of George and Herschel Sts.
Van of march enters Roma St from George St - click here to see the exact location.
Audience outside Qld Police HQ, Roma St - click here to see the exact location.
There were more speeches at Roma St, and then the march continued to the Jagara Community Hall at Musgrave Park, South Brisbane.
Click here to see the likely route of the march from Roma St to Musgrave Park.
Click here to see the exact location of Musgrave Park.
But I had to go home and spread the news on the net about S/Sgt Hurley being charged with manslaughter, so that's all from Let's Take Over.
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