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    Previously the rhetoric of this memorialisation, in Britain at least, suggested that the Holocaust was unprecedented but this has been difficult to sustain in the face of the relentlessness of genocidal violence in the modern world and Holocaust Memorial Day now invites us to remember other genocides too.

    In this memorialisation, genocide has become the ultimate atrocity, the ultimate transgression — an attack not just on a particular group but on the nature of humanity itself. Genocide, we are righty enjoined to remember, is a universal problem. Genocide is not just a crime committed by others, but is steeped in the history of this nation and its interaction with the rest of the world.

    When the British arrived there was an indigenous population of several thousand estimates range as high as 12, across at least 9 different culturally and linguistically distinct nations. Although the people that went to Wybalenna did so voluntarily, their decision to do so was taken following a campaign against them which in the eyes of the settlers at least amounted to an attempt at extermination.

    Once at Wybalenna although indigenous people were allowed to leave the settlement itself, they were confined to the island. After her death it was declared that the indigenous population of Tasmania was extinct. The idea of extinction was itself a myth, there is an enduring Aboriginal community in Tasmania to this day descended from the mixed race children of indigenous people and settlers who were understood to not be fully Aboriginal and thus were not included in the attempted ethnic cleansing of the s.

    Myth or not however, the scale of genocide in Tasmania is striking.

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    This was not a calamity that was confined to the furthest corner of the Empire — its story was told and retold at home too. It was also not a story that disappeared. Children read about it in comic books, and visitors to museums across Britain could see the skulls of indigenous Tasmanians in displays which suggested that they were an inferior people somehow out of time. The primary evidence for this was that they had allowed themselves to be exterminated. Those human remains were largely removed from display in the s, after the Holocaust had rather challenged the legitimacy of such racial characterisations.

    However, human remains have only been gradually returned to the Tasmanian Aboriginal community since the s. There was no agreed plan of extermination for example, no equivalent to the Wannsee Conference as a blueprint for destruction, and of course there was none of the technology of killing that is associated with the industrial death factories of the Shoah.

    Yet there were settlers in Tasmania that were determined to eradicate an indigenous population that threatened them and their desire to colonise the land. The British government urged that the settlers should not treat indigenous people violently, but at the same time instructed that they were entitled to defend the colony with lethal force. The British government also approved of the plan to deport the surviving indigenous communities from the island in a campaign of ethnic cleansing. While on Flinders Island the government also supported a campaign to eradicate indigenous culture, which it then attempted to apply to other Australian colonies.

    While the captive indigenous peoples on Flinders Island were no longer targeted for physical destruction, they were subject to treatment that amounted to cultural genocide. Indeed throughout British culture there was a sense that indigenous populations, not just in Tasmania but across the British world would inevitably die out in the face of the Empire. This idea of extinction was in part based on what was witnessed in Tasmania — and it revelled in the power and progress of the British Empire in comparison to what it saw as other inferior indeed primitive cultures.

    It was also an idea which sought to naturalise a process that was also the result of much violence, both directly and in the removal of land which provided the cultural and economic basis of life for indigenous communities.

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    When we remember genocide then, we should remember that the British have also inflicted this scourge on other parts of the world. Genocide does not just result from alien ideologies which are ultimately rather different from our own world like the Nazis. The example of Tasmania shows us that genocide and the attempt to rewrite what it means to be human is a part of British history too, a part of the idea of progress which still underpins many mainstream ideas of historical development.

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    Conflicting evidence of eyewitnesses indicated that either three Aboriginal Tasmanians were killed or "a great many were slaughtered and wounded" on 3 May at Risdon Cove when a large number came upon the colonists there. Company men had killed another 12 Aboriginals only days earlier. The conflict has been described as a genocide resulting in the elimination of the full-blood Tasmanian Aboriginal population which had numbered somewhere between 1, and 22, prior to colonisation.

    There are currently some 20, individuals who are of Tasmanian Aboriginal descent. Convincing Ground massacre of Gunditjmara: On the shore near Portland, Victoria was one of the largest recorded massacres in Victoria. Whalers and the local Kilcarer clan of the Gunditjmara people disputed rights to a beached whale carcass. Up to Aboriginal people were killed in reprisals carried out in response to the Faithful Massacre.

    According to Judith Bassett, [64] some 20 Aborigines attacked according to one recent account, possibly as a reprisal for the killing of several Aboriginal people at Ovens earlier by the same stockmen and at least one Koori and eight Europeans died.

    Reprisals occurred at Wangaratta on the Ovens River, at Murchison led by the native police under Dana and in the company of the young Edward Currwho could not bring himself to discuss what he witnessed there other than to say he took issue with the official reports. Other incidents were recorded by Mitchelton and Toolamba. This "hunting ground" would have been a ceremonial ground probably called a 'Kangaroo ground'.

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    Hunting grounds were all over so not something that would instigate an attack. The colonial government decided to "open up" the lands south of Yass after the Faithful Massacre and bring them under British rule. This was as much to try and protect the Aboriginal people from reprisals as to open up new lands for the colonists. In MayDaung Wurrung killed two shepherds in reprisal for the murder of three Daung the previous month.

    An armed party of settlers led by station owner Charles Hutton killed up to 40 Daung at a campsite near Campaspe Creek. The following month, Hutton led an armed party of police who killed six Dja Dja Wurrung at another camp. All six had been shot in the back while fleeing. The Assistant Protector of Aborigines for the region, described the massacre as "a deliberately planned illegal reprisal. In about the middle of the year, the Murdering Gully massacre near Camperdown, Victoria was carried out by Frederick Taylor and others in retaliation for some sheep being killed on his station by two unidentified Aborigines.

    The Tarnbeere Gundidj clan of the Djargurd Wurrung people, around people, was wiped out. Public censure led to Taylor's River being renamed Mount Emu Creek and, fearing prosecution for the massacre, in late or early Taylor fled to India. Of particular note for this massacre is the extent of oral history, first hand accounts of the incident, the detail in settler diaries, records of Weslayan missionaries, and Aboriginal Protectorate records.

    The Gippsland massacres which saw the population of Kurnai reduced from 2, to in 13 years from Between and 1, Indigenous Australians were indiscriminately murdered in a deliberate process of annihilation.

    The Whyte brothers massacred, according to various estimates, from 20 to 51 [70] [71] Jardwadjali men, women, and children on the Konongwootong run near Hamilton, Victoria. Aboriginal tradition puts the death toll as high as The Warrigal Creek massacre, amounting to Aboriginal people. George Smythe's surveying party shot in cold blood from 7 to 9 Aboriginal people, all but one women and children, at Cape Otway.

    A detachment of soldiers led by Irwin attacked an Aboriginal encampment north of Fremantle in the belief that it contained men who had "broken into and plundered the house of a man called Paton" and killed some poultry.

    Paton had called together a number of settlers who, armed with muskets, set after the Aboriginal people and came upon them not far from the home. Irwin stated, "This daring and hostile conduct of the natives induced me to seize the opportunity to make them sensible to our superiority, by showing how severely we could retaliate their aggression. Pinjarra massacreWestern Australia: Official records state 14 Aboriginal people killed, but other accounts put the figure much higher, at 25 or more.

    August, Lieutenant Bunbury [81] after killings in the York area, tracked one wounded Aboriginal man into the bush and shot him through the head. Bunbury also recorded the names of another 11 Aboriginal men he killed during this period.

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    Settlers to the district collected ears of Aboriginal men slain. On 27 August an extensive massacre at Lake Minimup in Western Australia, led by Captain John Molloy who "gave special instructions that no woman or child should be killed, but that no mercy should be offered the men. A strong and final lesson must be taught the blacks. The white men had no mercy. The black men were killed by dozens, and their corpses lined the route of march of the avengers.

    The commanding officer of the Western Australian native policeJohn Nicol Drummondtogether with a large group of station hands from nearby property holdings conducted a massacre of the resisting Aboriginals from the Greenough area, with Drummond and his force attacking their refuge at Bootenal swamp. The La Grange expedition was a search expedition carried out in the vicinity of La Grange Bay in the Kimberley region of Western Australia led by Maitland Brown that led to the death of up to 20 Aboriginal people.

    Flying Foam MassacreDampier Archipelago. Following the killing of two police and two settlers by local Yaburara peopletwo parties of settlers from the Roebourne area, led by prominent pastoralists Alexander McRae and John Withnellkilled an unknown number of Yaburara.

    Estimates of the number of dead range from 20 to Mary Durack suggests there was a conspiracy of silence about the massacres of Djara, Konejandi and Walmadjari peoples about attacks on Aboriginal people by white gold-miners, Aboriginal reprisals and consequent massacres at this time.

    John Durack was speared, which led to a local massacre in the Kimberley. After an affray in which 23 Aboriginals were shot and a policeman speared, a punitive expedition was launched in which another 30 Aboriginals were shot to "teach them a lesson" and instill fear of the white man into the indigenous population as a whole. Possibly hundreds were killed in the DerbyFitzroy Crossing and Margaret River area, while Jandamarra was being hunted down.

    Avenue Range Station massacre Mount Gambier region of South Australia — at least 9 indigenous Buandig Wattatonga clan people allegedly murdered by the station owner James Brown who was subsequently charged with the crime. The case was dropped by the Crown for lack of European witnesses. Settlers poisoned at least 50 Aboriginal people to death in the Brisbane valley in [96] On the outskirts of Kilcoy Station owned by Sir Evan MacKenzie, people of the Kabi Kabi died from eating flour laced with strychnine and arsenic.

    He also confirmed that "strychnine goes by the name of Mackenzie among the blacks". Perhaps more than killed in the Upper Burnett. The murder of the Pegg brothers, two adolescent employees at Foster and Blaxland Gin Gin station in June, was avenged in a large-scale punitive expedition with 'over 50 station-hands and squatters' catching up with 'more than a myals' camped at the mouth of Burnett River allegedly on the ground of the later 'Cedar' sugar plantation or Gibson's Cedars Estate.

    No numbers were made but the 'affray' was later described as 'one of the bloodiest in Queensland frontier history'. Unknown numbers killed on the Balonne and Condamine. By clashes between Aboriginal people and settlers occurred on the Balonne and Condamine Rivers of Queensland. Hundreds allegedly killed near Paddy Island in the Burnett River. Both William Henry Walsh and Sir Maurice Charles O'Connell is known to have participated in this expedition and Walsh later revealed some details during a parliamentary debate in Queensland some two decades later.

    They caught up with a large party of Aborigines near Paddy's Island at the mouth of the Burnett River and a major skirmish took place resulting in "hundreds" of Aborigines being shot down'.

    The number has been mentioned. After local Aboriginals had killed five station-hands at Mount Larcombe on Boxing Dayseveral punitive missions were conducted by Native Police augmented with armed settlers. Lieutenant John Murray of the Native Police led these reprisals. A group of around Aboriginals residing in the area were tracked down and surrounded at a creek near the modern day township of Raglan.

    At dawn, just as the group of men, women and children were awakening, they were ambushed and many shot dead. Hourigan's Creek at Raglan is named after the trooper who fired the first shots.

    Those who survived were again hunted down to the coast at Keppel Bay and either shot or driven into the sea. Hundreds killed in retaliation for the Hornet Bank massacre.

    Massacre of the Yeeman tribe and numerous attacks on many others following the attack on the Fraser family and their employees at Hornet Bank station. In the early hours of the 27 Octobermembers of the Yeeman tribe attacked the Fraser's Hornet Bank Station in the Dawson River Basin in Queensland killing 11 men, women and children in retaliation for the deaths of 12 members shot for spearing some cattle and the deaths of an unknown number of Yeeman nine months earlier who had been given strychnine laced Christmas puddings by the Fraser family.

    Following the deaths of his parents and siblings, William Fraser, who had been away on business, began a campaign of extermination that eventually saw the extinction of the Yeeman tribe and language group.

    Fraser is credited with killing more than members of the tribe with many more killed by sympathetic squatters and policemen. By March up to Yeeman had been killed.

    Public and police sympathy for Fraser was high, and he gained a reputation as a folk hero throughout Queensland. Carr had tracked down and surrounded their camp containing around people because the local squatter, William Sim, complained that they were "annoying the shepherds and demanding rations. The co-founder and proprietor of Colanne Station Kolan Nicholas Edward Nelson Tooth — in wrote about finding of numerous remains from Native Police dispersal Two or three of us were one day looking for ebony wood for stockwhip handles when we suddenly came on a heap of human bones, among which were 15 or 20 skulls At first we thought it was an old burying place of the blacks, but I afterwards learnt from a black that it was the spot where the native police had come upon a large camp of blacks and dispersed them.

    Between October and Novemberpolice and settlers killed an estimated Aboriginal people in what was then known as the Medway Ranges following the killing of the Wills family.

    Native troopers ambushed a Darumbal ceremonial gathering outside Rockhampton and shot dead 18 Aborigines, and then set fire to their corpses. This was claimed to be the result of settlers pushing Aboriginal people out of their hunting grounds and the Aboriginal people being forced to hunt livestock for food.

    !!!!!!Tasmanian Genoside!!!!

    He is supposed to have also mustered up a force of local whites. Alerted to Wheeler's presence by a native stockman, the district's Aboriginal people hid in caves on Goulbolba Hill.

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    According to eyewitness testimony taken down from one local white in thirty years after the eventthat day some Aboriginal people, including all the women and children, were shot dead or killed by being herded into the nearby lake for drowning. A Native Police detachment under the command of Sub-Inspector Aubin conducted an early morning shooting raid upon a peaceful camp of Aboriginals located at the Morinish goldfields. Seven people were killed including children and an old man, with others severely wounded.

    The massacre of large group of Aboriginal men, women and children from the north side of the Pioneer Rivertook place after being pursued by a Queensland Native Police Force, led by Sub-Inspector Johnstone, in April The group was camping on Balnagowan pastoral lease just to the south of The Leapwhere cattle had been speared in February and had sought refuge in caves at the top of the mountain.

    They were forced to jump off a cliff on Mount Mandarana of several hundred feet, rather than be face the carbines of the Native Police Force. In the visiting Norwegian scientist Carl Lumholtz recalled how he in about "was shown" at Bladensburg "a large number of skulls of natives who had been shot by the black police" some years earlier.

    F Mackay wrote an article to The Queenslander citing one witness and participant in this dispersal — the later property manager Hazelton Brock — who classified the incident as "the Massacre of the Blacks" and stated that it took place at the Skull Hole on Mistake Creek. Thus two unrelated sources give evidence and details notably with reports of forensic evidence in both cases of at least one large-scale dispersals at Bladensburg some time about — It was "one of the most blood curdling sights I ever saw" Hazelton Brock is supposed to have stated.

    Both sources describe it as connected to an Aboriginal attack on a bullock wagon during which one man was 'murdered'. The dispersal was headed by Acting Sub-inspector Robert Wilfred Moran — and his troopers and a group of settlers headed by George Fraser — 14 men in all — and the target was a large camp with hundreds of blacks in the "Skull Hole" in "the Forsyth Ranges on the head of Mistake Creek. The event took place during the first rush of miners travelling from the Endeavour River to the Palmer river in about November or December
    History Before European settlement The Shoreline of Tasmania and Victoria about 14, years ago as sea levels were rising showing some of the human archaeological sites — see Prehistory of Australia People crossed into Tasmania approximately 40, years, ago via a land bridge between the island and the rest of mainland Australia, during the last glacial period.

    According to genetic studies, once the sea level rose, flooding the Bassian Plainthe people were left isolated for approximately 8, years, until the time of European exploration, during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

    Modern digs in southwest and central Tasmania turned up very abundant finds, affording 'the richest archaeological evidence from Pleistocene Greater Australia' covering the period from 35, to 11, BP. The archeological and geographic record suggests a period of drying, with the colder glacial period, with a desert extending from southern Australia into the midlands of Tasmania - with intermittent periods of wetter, warmer weather.

    People migrating from southern Australia into peninsular Tasmania would have crossed stretches of seawater and desert, and finally found oases in the King highlands now King Island. The archeological, geographic and linguistic record suggests a pattern of successive occupation of Tasmania, and coalescence of three ethnic or language groups into one broad group.

    Evidence for contest over territory is reflected by the presence of Nara the broad western Tasmania language group toponymy in Mara the broad eastern language group territory; for example - suggesting a pattern of occupation and hostile takeover that mirrors traditional hostilities during colonial times.

    Colonial settlers found two main language groups in Tasmania upon their arrival, which correlates with the broader nation or clan divisions. Pleistocene Palawa language group - first ethnic and language group in Tasmania - absorbed or displaced by successive invasions except for remnant group on Tasman peninsula.

    Archeological evidence suggests remnant populations on the King and Furneaux highlands being stranded by rising waters - later to die out. After separation from mainland Australia, the Tasmanian people were not able to share any of the new technological advances being made by mainland groups.

    This made the Aboriginal Tasmanians a people that could flourish with some of the simplest technologies on record. Their capacity to create fire via the friction method had been questioned by authors in the 20th Century, [27] though a document from clearly describes fire-lighting techniques used among Tasmanians.

    Approximately 4, years ago, the Aboriginal Tasmanians largely dropped scaled fish from their diet, and began eating more land mammals, such as possumskangaroosand wallabies. Aboriginal Tasmanians had employed bone tools, but it appears that they switched from worked bone tools to sharpened stone tools[32] as the effort to make bone tools began to exceed the benefit they provided.

    Some argue that it is evidence of a maladaptive society, while others argue that the change was economic, as large areas of scrub at that time were changing to grassland, providing substantially increased food resources.

    Ina French exploratory expedition under Marion Dufresne visited Tasmania. At first, contact with the Aboriginal people was friendly; however the Aboriginal Tasmanians became alarmed when another boat was dispatched towards the shore.

    It was reported that spears and stones were thrown and the French responded with musket fire, killing at least one Aboriginal person and wounding several others. Two later French expeditions led by Bruni d'Entrecasteaux in —93 and Nicolas Baudin in made friendly contact with the Aboriginal Tasmanians; the d'Entrecasteaux expedition doing so over an extended period of time.

    The contact was peaceful. Shortly thereafter by aboutsealers were regularly left on uninhabited islands in Bass Strait during the sealing season November to May.

    The sealers established semi-permanent camps or settlements on the islands, which were close enough for the sealers to reach the main island of Tasmania in small boats and so make contact with the Aboriginal Tasmanians. Hunting dogs became highly prized by the Aboriginal people, as were other exotic items such as flour, tea and tobacco. The Aboriginal people traded kangaroo skins for such goods. However, a trade in Aboriginal women soon developed.

    Many Tasmanian Aboriginal women were highly skilled in hunting seals, as well as in obtaining other foods such as seabirds, and some Tasmanian tribes would trade their services and, more rarely, those of Aboriginal men to the sealers for the seal-hunting season. Others were sold on a permanent basis. This trade incorporated not only women of the tribe engaged in the trade but also women abducted from other tribes.

    Some may have been given to incorporate the new arrivals into Aboriginal society through marriage. Sealers engaged in raids along the coasts to abduct Aboriginal women and were reported to have killed Aboriginal men in the process.

    By seal numbers had been greatly reduced by hunting so most seal hunters abandoned the area, however a small number of sealers, approximately fifty mostly 'renegade sailors, escaped convicts or ex-convicts', remained as permanent residents of the Bass Strait islands and some established families with Tasmanian Aboriginal women.

    Differing opinions have been given on Walyer's involvement with the sealers. McFarlane writes that she voluntarily joined the sealers with members of her family, and was responsible for attacking Aboriginal people and white settlers alike. Walyer, a Punnilerpanner, joined the Plairhekehillerplue band after eventually escaping and went on to lead attacks on employees of the Van Diemen's Land Company. Walyer's attacks are the first recorded use of muskets by Aboriginal people.

    Captured, she refused to work and was banished to Penguin Island. Later imprisoned on Swan Island she attempted to organise a rebellion. Although Aboriginal women were by custom forbidden to take part in war, several Aboriginal women who escaped from sealers became leaders or took part in attacks. According to Lyndall Ryan, the women traded to, or kidnapped by sealers became "a significant dissident group" against white authority.

    Land [43] The raids for, and trade in, Aboriginal women contributed to the rapid depletion of the numbers of Aboriginal women in the northern areas of Tasmania, "by only three women survived in northeast Tasmania among 72 men", [35] and thus contributed in a significant manner to the demise of the full-blooded Aboriginal population of Tasmania.

    However many modern day Aboriginal Tasmanians trace their descent from the 19th century sealer communities of Bass Strait. There are numerous stories of the sealers' brutality towards the Aboriginal women; with some of these reports originating from Robinson.

    InRobinson seized 14 Aboriginal women from the sealers, planning for them to marry Aboriginal men at the Flinders Island settlement. Josephine Floodan archaeologist specialising in Australian mainland Aboriginal peoples, notes: The sealers sent a representative, James Munroto appeal to Governor Arthur and argue for the women's return on the basis that they wanted to stay with their sealer husbands and children rather than marry Aboriginal men unknown to them.

    Arthur ordered the return of some of the women. Shortly thereafter, Robinson began to disseminate stories, told to him by James Munro, of atrocities allegedly committed by the sealers against Aboriginal people and against Aboriginal women, in particular.

    Brian Plomleywho edited Robinson's papers, expressed scepticism about these atrocities and notes that they were not reported to Archdeacon Broughton 's committee of inquiry into violence towards Tasmanians. Abduction and ill-treatment of Aboriginal Tasmanians certainly occurred, but the extent is debated. Critic Bernard William Smith assessed the work as a "history painting in the full sense of the word", with the natives "seated—emblematic of their situation—around the dying embers of a burnt-out log near a great blackened stump, and in the far left corner there is a leafless tree with shattered branches.

    The first took place between and over the need for common food sources such as oysters and kangaroos, and the second between andwhen the small number of white females among the farmers, sealers and whalers, led to the trading, and the abduction, of Aboriginal women as sexual partners. These practices also increased conflict over women among Aboriginal tribes. This in turn led to a decline in the Aboriginal population.

    Historian Lyndall Ryan records 74 Aboriginal people almost all women living with sealers on the Bass Strait islands in the period up to InGovernor Thomas Davey issued a proclamation expressing "utter indignation and abhorrence" in regards to the kidnapping of the children and in Governor William Sorell not only re-issued the proclamation but ordered that those who had been taken without parental consent were to be sent to Hobart and supported at government expense.

    An Irish sealer named Brien spared the life of the baby son of a native woman he had abducted, explaining, "as he had stolen the dam he would keep the cub. Some Aboriginal children were sent to the Orphan School in Hobart. Keith Windschuttle argues that while smallpox never reached Tasmania, respiratory diseases such as influenza, pneumonia and tuberculosis and the effects of venereal diseases devastated the Tasmanian Aboriginal population whose long isolation from contact with the mainland compromised their resistance to introduced disease.

    The work of historian James Bonwick and anthropologist H. Ling Roth, both writing in the 19th century, also point to the significant role of epidemics and infertility without clear attribution of the sources of the diseases as having been introduced through contact with Europeans. Bonwick, however, did note that Tasmanian Aboriginal women were infected with venereal diseases by Europeans. Introduced venereal disease not only directly caused deaths but, more insidiously, left a significant percentage of the population unable to reproduce.

    Josephine Flood, archaeologist, wrote: Whole tribes some of which Robinson mentions by name as being in existence fifteen or twenty years before he went amongst them, and which probably never had a shot fired at them had absolutely and entirely vanished. To the causes to which he attributes this strange wasting away I think infecundityproduced by the infidelity of the women to their husbands in the early times of the colony, may be safely added Robinson always enumerates the sexes of the individuals he took; In he revisited the west coast of Tasmania, far from the settled regions, and wrote: A mortality has raged amongst them which together with the severity of the season and other causes had rendered the paucity of their number very considerable.

    Rapid pastoral expansion, a depletion of native game and an increase in the colony's population triggered Aboriginal resistance from onwards when it has been estimated by Lyndall Ryan that Aboriginal people remained in the settled districts.

    Whereas settlers and stock keepers had previously provided rations to the Aboriginal people during their seasonal movements across the settled districts, and recognised this practice as some form of payment for trespass and loss of traditional hunting grounds, the new settlers and stock keepers were unwilling to maintain these arrangements and the Aboriginal people began to raid settlers' huts for food. The official Government position was that Aboriginal people were blameless for any hostilities, but when Musquito was hanged ina significant debate was generated which split the colonists along class lines.

    The "higher grade" saw the hanging as a dangerous precedent and argued that Aboriginal people were only defending their land and should not be punished for doing so.

    The "lower grade" of colonists wanted more Aboriginal people hanged to encourage a "conciliatory line of conduct. In the Government gazette, which had formerly reported "retaliatory actions" by Aboriginal people, now reported "acts of atrocity" and for the first time used the terminology "Aborigine" instead of "native".

    A newspaper reported that there were only two solutions to the problem: The colonial Government assigned troops to drive them out. A Royal Proclamation in established military posts on the boundaries and a further proclamation declared martial law against the Aboriginal people. Every dispatch from Governor Arthur to the Secretary of State during this period stressed that in every case where Aboriginal people had been killed it was colonists that initiated hostilities.

    The Black War of —32 and the Black Line of were turning points in the relationship with European settlers. Even though many of the Aboriginal people managed to avoid capture during these events, they were shaken by the size of the campaigns against them, and this brought them to a position whereby they were willing to surrender to Robinson and move to Flinders Island.

    Tasmanian aboriginals and settlers mentioned in literature — Europeans killed and Aborigines captured may be considered as reasonably accurate. The figures for tribal people shot is likely to be a substantial undercount.
    Less easy to grasp is the way Australia has largely chosen to shut its eyes to the centenary of another event in the same country: The Australian Government acknowledges the devastating effects which the tragic events at the end of the Ottoman Empire have had on later generations and on their identity, heritage and culture.

    The foreign minister is wrong on two counts: But Bishop is right on two points. During the last years of the Ottoman Empire, a very large number of Ottoman citizens from different ethnic and religious backgrounds endured great suffering, leaving deep scars in their memories.

    They had all lived together for centuries in peace and harmony. As descendants of nations with different ethnic and religious origins who endured these sufferings amid the conditions of the First World War, we understand what the Armenians feel.

    We remember with respect the innocent Ottoman Armenians who lost their lives and offer our deep condolences to their descendants. Protesters in Martyrs Square, Beirut, Lebanon, earlier this month — one of many global events to commemorate the centenary of the Armenian genocide. Many of our friends and allies — Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, the Vatican — have adopted a moral stance rather than a foreign policy ploy in recognising those events as the Armenian genocide.

    It has since been widely reported that Obama will avoid using the term in his address, despite declaring in that: The facts are undeniable … as President I will recognise the Armenian Genocide. Even at the time, the world acknowledged what was happening to the Armenians.

    In view of these new crimes of Turkey against humanity and civilisation, the Allied governments announce publicly … that they will hold personally responsible … all members of the Ottoman government and those of their agents who are implicated in such massacres. New South Wales and South Australia. Three countries — Cyprus, Switzerand and Slovakia — have even criminalised denial of the Armenian genocide. Is it conceivable that these nations and reputable bodies have got it wrong, or been hoodwinked by a conspiracy by those who wish Turkey ill?

    For decades, the Turkish government has lobbied the American Congress not to pass a resolution recognising the genocide.

    International recognition today

    It requires a two-thirds majority to pass and each year the required number comes closer. True, the countries that have recognised the genocide do not have our special Australian—Turkish relationship. In the s, the state of Maine mandated school textbooks on the Holocaust. Australians have a strong proclivity not to remember, or to refuse to remember, the dark side of history, as with the eras of physical killings of Aborigines and, later, the forcible removal of their children.

    But political change may yet come. Joe Hockey is national Treasurer. Both are of Armenian descent and both have worked assiduously for a reasoned recognition of historical realities.

    Hockey has so far been rebuffed in his steadfast efforts. However, it is just possible that in his lifetime he will get a hearing in federal cabinet.

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