Aboriginal government stooge rubbishes activists resisting planned coalmine

Wangan and Jagalingou people

A prominent Aborigine despised by many other Aborigines as a stooge of the Australian white establishment, has ridiculed struggles for Aboriginal land rights and First Nations treaties as “fantasy business transactions”. In a commentary on the website, National Indigenous Times, partly owned by an Aboriginal businessman, Warren Mundine, the former head of the Australian prime minister’s Indigenous Advisory Council, wrote that  “Activists undermine principles of self-determination.” The same article had appeared earlier in the daily The Australian, flagship newspaper of the rightwing publishing tycoon, Rupert Murdoch.


In particular Mundine targets the Aboriginal resistance to the mega coal mine planned by the Indian Adani company for central eastern Queensland, writing: “The Adani project has attracted anti-coal activists who are running roughshod over Indigenous self-determination. Adani negotiated Indigenous Land Use Agreements with half a dozen traditional owner groups, including with the Wangan and Jagalingou people native title claim group, which voted 294 to one in favour of the ILUA permitting construction of the Carmichael rail project.”


The Wangan and Jagalingou activists claim that Adani hired a crowd, all expenses paid, to buy their votes.


'We, the Wangan & Jagalingou people, are the Traditional Owners of the land in Queensland’s Galilee Basin. Adani wants to use our ancestral lands for their Carmichael coal mine. We are opposed to this mine because it will forever damage our land and our culture. We ask that you stand with us to fight against Adani.” (Video)


"We DO NOT accept Adani’s “offers” to sign away our land and our rights and interests in it. We will not take their “shut up” money. "We will PROTECT and DEFEND our Country and our connection to it."


“We will not surrender." (Video)


The activists say they are making progress in their struggle for justice and protection of country in the face of a system that’s stacked against them, and governments, traditional media and a mining lobby falling over themselves to back Adani in.


"We are determined to continue our fight against Adani’s terrible mine. For the sake of our land, for climate justice, and for what’s right for the future, we must prevail." (Video)


"Adani Mining won’t listen – they are rude and obstinate – so we will take the fight up a notch. We are planning more action in the courts and will take this fight all the way.


"We will continue to fight. We are protecting Wangan and Jagalingou country (video) from irreversible destruction, from complete devastation. We will maintain our stand against the Adani Carmichael mine. Because when we say no, we mean no."


The Wangan and Jagalingou activists comment: “Warren Mundine makes exaggerated, false and misleading comments. As his views still gain considerable national attention as the former head of the Prime Minister’s Indigenous Advisory Council it is necessary for us to respond.


"While we agree that “making your own decisions and controlling your own destiny… is something for which Indigenous people long campaigned” – he does much to undermine this premise in his article. His uninformed characterisations of the Wangan and Jagalingou situation regarding the proposed Adani Carmichael mine do us and our campaign for self-determination a great disservice.


"Our forebears, like many others, pursued “sources of self-determination, like land rights”.

“We too celebrate Koiki Eddie Mabo’s achievement to gain “recognition of his people’s fundamental and original right to the land and seas on which they’d lived and subsisted since time immemorial.


"But to then build an argument on Mabo’s legacy, as Mundine does, and say that the Native Title Act in its present form is fostering “Indigenous economic participation by allowing traditional owners to use land as an economic asset”, is ludicrous. He fails to position the importance of traditional lands in the full spectrum of Indigenous values and uses (not just economic and extractive relations to resources), alongside the manifest failures of the Native Title Act to deliver anything remotely like land rights for most Aboriginal people.


"His elevation of the role of businesses in empowering Traditional Owners through Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs) compounds the folly. And to go further and state that there’s “little difference in substance between a treaty and an ILUA entered into with a government” reaches the height of absurdity.  


"As Deakin University’s Emeritus Professor Dr Jon Altman states, “Warren Mundine is poorly informed about the workings of the Native Title Act. His views run contrary to three Federal Court Judges. He confuses correlation with causation. In other words, just because key Traditional Owners and some ‘greenies’ agree, doesn’t mean one caused the other. It just means they share a similar view on Adani’s Carmichael mine proposal.”


"We will argue our case to the Australian public. These are the people who support us, morally and financially. We welcome the many thousands of contributions that assist with our legal and other actions.


"We make no apologies for taking a stand, like so many Aboriginal rights campaigners, against a dubious company intent on overriding our decisions, destroying our heritage, dividing our people and offering an insulting pittance in return.


"Mundine can characterise it however he likes, but we have no doubt that our stand is exactly an assertion of Indigenous self-determination. We don’t need his approval, or care about his disapproval.


"Though we’re sure his mates in the mining sector and the halls of government will welcome his opinions."


Recently here on linksunten:


Always independent: An interview with Murrawarri Republic Chair Fred Hooper  -   Prime Minister Turnbull offers to sacrifice Aboriginal rights to Adani in an act of national betrayal  -   Australian governments have failed Indigenous peoples, says Oxfam  -  Thousands protest in Australia against Reef-destroying monster coalmines  -  The enemy within! Beware of the programmed de-Aboriginalised Aborigines!  -  United Nations rapporteur 'appalled' at Indigenous youth detention and living conditions in Australia  -  Australian government fails to pass native land rights changes - major setback for proposed giant Adani coal mine  -  “I can't describe the feeling of having to prove my Aboriginality”  -   “Eat that little bit of poo go! go! go! Come suck my dick you little cunt”  -   “9,000+ anti-Adani campaigners to occupy work sites, chain themselves to machinery and clog phone lines”  - Adani hopes to start mining in Queensland in August, state Premier confident  - Ten years of Close the Gap; Why are we sicker, poorer and living shorter than the rest of Australia?  -  "Miners and other rich developers will have even better tools to divide and conquer us"  -  The Australian government's constitutional ‘Dialogue’ processes are fatally flawed  - Urgent: Last chance to stand up for indigenous land rights!  -  Protest against new uranium mine in Western Australia  - A treaty won't solve everything, but it could change this nation's cultural tapestry  -  Literaturstar aus dem Wohnwagen  -  First Nations form green energy alliance to beat govt. electricity corruption  -  "One of the vilest racist acts we've seen"  -  Grassroots Aboriginal movement in New South Wales squashes ‘Recognise’

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Protesters occupied mining infrastructure company’s Melbourne offices

Climate activists on 27 April morning occupied the Melbourne offices of Downer EDI, to protest their participation in developing the planned Adani coal mine in Queensland, which is widely seen as a climate carbon bomb with no social license.

At about 11.20am police arrived on the scene. At 11.45am police left the offices. The occupation was peaceful and there was no threat, no harm in the occupation. Protesters argue the much bigger threat comes from Downer's willingness to build the mine for Adani and the damage that it will impose in Australia and globally through climate change.

By 3.30pm the occupation protest was all over.
There were no arrests.


Aurizon, Adani in talks on rail for Australian coal mine

Aurizon Holdings Ltd is talking to Adani Enterprises about building a rail line for the Indian company's proposed $4 billion coal project in Australia, in a plan that could cut costs for the long delayed mine. Aurizon and Adani have submitted rival applications to the Australian government's Northern Australia Infrastructure Fund for a cheap loan to help fund a rail line into the untapped Galilee Basin, where Adani's Carmichael project is.

Brown queries Carmichael jobs numbers
Australia's Mining Monthly
THE former leader of the Australian Greens Bob Brown has challenged the forecast employment figures from Adani's proposed Carmichael coal mine


Turnbull says government could subsidise gas pipelines and Adani rail 
The Guardian 
The government could subsidise gas pipelines in northern Australia in addition to providing a loan for Adani to build a rail line.

Our appreciation to researcher Jens Korff of Creative Spirits for his invaluable research on the topics of self-determination and autonomy. – Editorial team of WGAR News.

Aboriginal self-determination and autonomy

Self-determination is a term used to describe that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people take matters into their own hands.

Self-determination involves a substantive transfer of decision-making power from government to Indigenous peoples. It requires programs and resources that can assist them in rebuilding their own decision-making capabilities.

Self-determination can include everything from being actively involved in policy formulation to providing services from cultural peers (rather than outside of Aboriginal culture).

Self-determination is something you take, not something a government gives you.—Gary Foley, Aboriginal activist

Self-determination and self-government are essential bases for making sustained improvements in the social and economic conditions of Aboriginal people.

If governance is executed the right way, for example in a culturally responsive way, data shows that Aboriginal people are “in the driving seat” of their own development.

Self-determination encompasses both land rights and self-governance, as land is understood to be the economic (and in some cases spiritual) basis for Aboriginal communities to be self-governing.

Proclamation: First Nations’ Sovereignty
On 26 January 2017 a proclamation of Aboriginal sovereignty mapped out the foundation of Aboriginal peoples’ rights in law and their demands for sovereignty within Australia.

Aboriginal sovereignty in Australia
'Sovereignty in Australia is tightly connected to the Aboriginal self-determination movement. But how do you define sovereignty? And who has sovereignty in Australia?'

Aboriginal nations declaring independence
'Several Aboriginal nations declared their independence. Watch videos on why they did it.

Principles of self-determination
Which principles support Aboriginal self-determination? You’ll be surprised what’s beyond the obvious.

Would a treaty help Aboriginal self-determination?
Australia is still without a treaty with its Aboriginal people. What is a treaty? And would it help Aboriginal people advance?

Aboriginal representative bodies
Aboriginal people need a body to represent them to governments. Several mistakes made the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission fail, which the National Congress tries to avoid.


Aboriginal political parties
The ‘Ecological, Social Justice, Aboriginal Party’ and the ‘First Nations Political Party’ are Aboriginal-run groups.'

Aboriginal ownership makes self-determination successful
Non-Aboriginal parties can do their best to make projects successful, but handing over control to Aboriginal people increases chances of success.

Aboriginal land councils
Aboriginal land and sea councils help Aboriginal people get back and manage their land, and are a point of contact for non-Aboriginal people’s inquiries.