The international word used to describe these objectives to achieve these outcomes is the right of self-determination, but as colonised Peoples we must understand that it is We who must take a good hard look at ourselves because when we talk about citizenship, what are we talking about?
Are we talking about being sovereign citizens of our own Nations or are we talking about being citizens of the Commonwealth of Australia?
12 September 2015
Ghillar, Michael Anderson, Convenor of the Sovereign Union, co-founder of the Aboriginal Embassy and Head of State of the Euahlayi Peoples Republic sends his Speech for the Freedom Summit on Saturday 12 November 2015 at the Old Bungalow, Mparntwe (Alice Springs, NT):
Many minds can locate the true pathway: one outcome
The need for decolonisation and asserting independence
I present this paper to you because I am unable to attend today.
It is absolutely important that we take on board what an Aboriginal leader, Patrice Lumumba, of the Democratic Republic of Congo said when he addressed the Pan African Congress (PAC) in 1960 and said we have to rediscover our most intimate selves and rid ourselves of mental attitudes and complexes and habits that colonisation has trapped us in for the last centuries.
Lumumba thought it was possible to work together with the former Belgium oppressors who for their part they saw as an enemy and facilitated his assimilation.
If we truly want to establish a process of asserting our sovereignty then we must cast aside personalities and differences. This is not about gaining personal notoriety or fame because not one person has all the answers, but many minds can locate the true pathway. For of all we need to recognise flaws in our own personal makeup. Do we truly understand what colonised minds look like? The most famous psychoanalyst and philosopher Franz Fanon argued that we must first look at ourselves as oppressed people because oppressed people must understand that they are themselves their own examples of oppression and unfortunately when we go through the education and enculturation processes of the colonial States, we miss so much of our own ancient teachings and in doing so lose our self-awareness of who we truly are.
This in turn creates confusion for ourselves personally because on the one hand, we want to be Murri, Anangu, Koori, Yolngu, Narungga, Arrerente, Euahlayi or Murrawarri for example. On the other hand the success of their education and enculturation has us working towards what Fanon describes as the oppressed wanting, at any cost, to resemble the oppressor. He also says that colonised people perpetuate their own conditions of dysfunctionality while striving to emulate the culture and ideas of their oppressors. He concluded by saying that imperialism leaves behind germs of rot that must be clinically detected and removed from our land but not only our land, our minds as well.
While there is a long standing desire to unite, our enemy is often ourselves. For us it is about whose idea it was and personalities can become our Number One enemy.
We may not recognise how much we have been enculturated.
While there is a long standing desire to unite, our enemy is often ourselves. For us it is about whose idea it was and personalities can become our Number One enemy. There are many pathways to our own liberation but there is only one outcome which many offerings such as a right to our own identity; a continuation of languages; right to our own citizenship and nationality; right to be a member of our own Sovereign Nation with clearly defined boundaries and a right to ceremony, spirituality; and the right to develop our own natural resources in order to develop an economic base that will give us the benefits of being able to improve our own social conditions so that we can have a better and healthier wellbeing and prosperous new way under our Law, culture and custom.
The international word used to describe these objectives to achieve these outcomes is the right of self-determination, but as colonised Peoples we must understand that it is We who must take a good hard look at ourselves because when we talk about citizenship, what are we talking about? Are we talking about being sovereign citizens of our own Nations or are we talking about being citizens of the Commonwealth of Australia?
Michael Mansell and the Aboriginal Provisional Government (APG) have put up two proposals:
1. the Seventh State to consist of all Aboriginal owned lands throughout Australia, which it in turn would mean that we give up our own independent identity in order to become a single State;
2. Is to have identified seats in Parliament dedicated specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. This was discussed 29 years ago and at the time we were told in the National Aboriginal Conference (NAC) that we were thirty years ahead of our time.
The 7th State proposals create a number of questions that we have to deal with. If we are to entertain these notions then we need to understand which citizenship we adopt and have a right to because the colonised minds of the majority are confused. On the one hand it would assist in redeeming our tribes and Nations and at the same time empowering First Nations Peoples of Australia, but this approach has some very real threats. One is it will require us in many ways to develop a Westminster parliamentary system under the control of our oppressor, and it opposes the real struggles for self-determination. Not only that but people do not understand that using this language and approach would very well trap us into an illusion of self-determination and could cause us to miss opportunities to realise the real thing.
Here in Australia we have Aboriginal collaborators who are working with the Australian Government believing they can achieve the best of both worlds. We must be careful. To collaborate in its root meaning is to work together, but there is also a different meaning – it is called traitorious co-operation with the enemy, which means that when we engage in their proposals the threat depends on whether our minds are decolonised. Working together requires all participants to work on themselves, their thinking, assumptions, perspectives, beliefs and habits of mind. There is more to decolonisation than meets the eye. There is a right of self-determination and all that can be achieved from that when organised properly, but decolonisation is also personal and political.
This is our challenge if we are to establish ourselves as leaders to take this movement forward. Otherwise we need to stay within our own Nation boundaries and borders to work with our own People if we are not prepared to work as a single political unit. Names and acronyms mean nothing. It is the right outcome that we need. Defining these outcomes is our first priority, then we can work together on methodologies to achieve our goals. Without doing this we are flogging a dead horse.
Political rhetoric is cheap, making things happen is hard and requires commitment and loyalty to a common cause. Overall we must attain a trust in each other if we are to work as a team, for without trust and loyalty we are like leaves on a dying tree. We need that tree to grow, each branch must grow strong and not allow the leaves to die. We will only leave behind one legacy if we fail to do this - a beautiful structure silhouetted against the setting sun for it is dead.
The Sovereign Union is about bringing each Nation together and the only priority is that those who become members of the Sovereign Union are People who have defined their territory, established an interim government and created their flag and indicia that demonstrate who they are and have created a Constitution of their own under their Law and culture and, where applicable, incorporation of a modern parliamentary system on our terms.
We are in the process now of formalising Treaties which formalise the inter-relationship between the Nations and the Sovereign Union. The Sovereign Union also has existing NGO status within the United Nations and has been a vehicle for reporting and giving evidence on the dreaded effects of British/Australian colonial genocidal practices against our Peoples. We have been doing this for 16 years, but it is an idea that was founded by Ghillar Michael Anderson and Clarrie Isaacs now deceased Yamatji Noongah man. We must go forward, we cannot allow any negativity to control where we are going.