Monday, October 30, 2006



Like Nazis marching
into Poland
comes this convoy
from the city:
snake of chrome

with snake-evil task,
the trucks of Amax,
going to Noonkanbah,
place of the goanna,
to rip and tear.

In this time and place
a Nazi raid
into the lands of those who
with sacredness and gentility
uphold civilisation
against the perfidious
god of profit.

With conqueror’s sneer
at the roadside few
the police drive straight
at the camera crew

Superiority – so base, so low,
as on the trucks of Amax

In my dull routine
far from the jellied
heat of the road,
an aching to fight:

to swoop from the skies
in wedgetail glory
leaving the trucks of Amax

But police stand guard
with batons hard
along the road
to Noonkanbah…

Under the banner of plunder
the Nazis march today
all through the great
Down Under
if Amax has its way.

And a fight it shall be,
for in these things -

Compassion and the greed of the plunderer
Respect and the superior man’s contempt
Understanding and the arrogance of the profiteer
Independence and prostitution to the foreign dollar
Freedom and police in the pay of traitors
No - there are no
swastikas, only dollar signs
but like Nazis
marching into Poland
go the trucks of Amax

I wrote the poem above in 1980. This is the background:

Australia is a nation created by British colonialism, which seized the southern continent from its indigenous owners in 1788 and succeeding years. Ruling class historians describe this as "discovery" and "settlement" and even today try to deny that the process was one by which one group of people, the colonialists, used violence and the threat of violence to overturn the traditional rights of another people, the tribal communities of Aboriginal Australia.

As a Second World country, Australia is denied its full rights to independence by imperialism. The injustice of this is visited many times over on the indigenous peoples, many of whom live in worse than Third World conditions.

Twenty-six years ago, the Texas-based multinational Amax decided that it wanted to drill for oil on the Noonkanbah pastoral lease near Fitzroy Crossing in Western Australia. The traditional Aboriginal owners saw themselves as custodians of the land and it’s Dreaming sites and resisted this encroachment on their land. The labour movement swung into action behind them.

The right wing Premier of Western Australia mobilised the state forces behind Amax and a vicious police presence was used to guard a convoy of 49 Amax trucks on their journey from Perth to Noonkanbah, 3000 kilometre to the north.

The arrogance of the reactionaries and their contempt for indigenous culture is seen in the cartoon.
Twenty-five years later, in December 2004, the Noonkanbah community won a native land title claim to 1811 square kilometres of their traditional land.
The "place of the goanna" refers to an indigenous belief about a part of the mining lease being sacred to the large Australian lizard called the goanna.
The wedgetail eagle is a magnificent and majestic bird, the largest of Australia’s birds of prey.
(For a history of indigenous struggle in the 70’s and 80’s, see here)

Friday, October 27, 2006

Ted Hill

Comrade Haisanlu referred to Comrade E. F. (Ted) Hill, late former Chairman of the CPA(M-L) in his reply to my blog on North Korea.

I remember Ted Hill well. He was an older generation of communist to most of my contemporaries, but he was the undisputed leader of the CPA (M-L) and had a thorough grasp of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought. He provided active leadership over many years politically, ideologically and organisationally. I still go to his writings for guidance.

Ted Hill and Mao Zedong had many discussions over the years. This is an early photo of the two.

I mentioned Charlie McCaffrey in an earlier blog. Here, he and Ted meet with Comrade Enver Hoxha.

Great servants of the people, all of them!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Hands Off North Korea!

This then is the insomniac’s nightmare:
The monster’s claw above the face
The black emptiness of terror
The mind’s frantic paralysis
The pounding of the rigid body
The frozen palpitations
The shivering warmth of sweat
The sleepless fear
Of the eternal second
When, with undue haste
To beat the morning sun
The world is bathed
In the final light
Of the megaton

I am no lover of nuclear weapons.

I wrote the poem above in 1990, when it still seemed possible that nuclear conflict might occur.

Why then do I salute the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea for conducting an underground nuclear test on October 9, 2006?

Because this tests was done in revolutionary defiance of threats from US imperialism.

Defiance of imperialism is not a bad thing, but a good thing, even when it means a proliferation of nuclear weapons in the world.

My view is that we should continue to call for the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of all nuclear weapons. The onus must be on the biggest nuclear powers to destroy their stockpiles first to a level at which a general process of destruction in all nuclear weapons possessing states can occur.

Only twice used in conflict, the massive stockpiles of nuclear weapons in the world have long been used as a means to bully and oppress small nations striving for independence from imperialism.

Nations not wanting to be controlled by US imperialism are inevitably designated "rogue nation" status, or are declared to be part of an "Axis of Evil". They are subjected to every form of threat and sanction from US imperialism and its followers.

They are told that it is the right of US imperialism to initiate "pre-emptive first strikes" against sovereign nations so as to effect "regime change". They are openly told that they are on the US imperialist hit-list.

When they offer to talk on a one-to-one basis with US imperialism or to sign pacts of mutual non-aggression with US imperialism they are spurned.

North Korea would willingly sign a "no first use" of nuclear weapons clause with US imperialism, but the latter will not agree.

The response of Australia’s politicians, who are out and out lickspittles of US imperialism, has been to spur the US on to retaliation against North Korea. Foreign Minister Alexander Downer has upgraded North Korea from "rogue state" to "outlaw rogue state" status. One wonders how much worse they can get! Prime Minister Howard declares North Korea to be a "seriously crazy regime" and warns that a military strike against it may be necessary!

Meanwhile, the common sense of the people rises to the surface. Nearly all letters to the editor of the local capitalist press blame the US for provoking North Korea into conducting a nuclear test. Many direct ridicule and scorn at Bush and Co.

We need to state quite clearly:

Hands off North Korea!

For the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of all nuclear weapons!