Thursday, August 21, 2014

First Dog on the Moon: On Frontier Wars, Settler colonialism and resistance

Dear friends,
as I have mentioned before one of the reasons I became active in the Palestine solidarity activism is because of my own personal history - I saw the similarities between the Indigenous struggle of the Palestinian people and the struggle of Indigenous Australians.  Coming from a family of mixed heritage (my mother is Aboriginal and my father comes from a mixed European background), my first engagement with political activism was around Aboriginal and Indigenous rights and the struggle for land rights and justice in this country.

Aboriginal Australians have been no different from the Palestinians in fighting back against ethnic cleansing and settler-colonisation. Our people carried out an extensive armed resistance to European settler colonialism. This resistance began the moment Cook set foot on Australian soil in 1770 – the Gweagal people attacked Cook’s landing party with spears and woomeras. From that moment on Aboriginal resistance never ceased (for my earlier blogs on this, click here)

This resistance to European settler-colonialism in Australia is known as "The Frontier Wars". The period was largely ignored historically until Australian historian, Henry Reynolds wrote about it in 1981.

Today, First Dog on the Moon (Andrew Marlton), who is an Australian Walkley Award winning political cartoonist and satirist published a cartoon addressing the Frontier Wars in Australia and the hypocrisy of the Australian Abbott government (it should be noted that the Labor govts have also been completely hypocritical in relation to this as well).  The cartoon is very poignant, moving me to to tears.

First Dog's cartoon about the Frontier Wars is not only about the resistance by Aboriginal Australia to European settler-colonialism but it is also about the whitewashing of that history by repeated Australian governments. 

I have been a big fan of First Dog on the Moon for sometime.  Recently, during the assault on Gaza, First Dog also published a cartoon ridiculing the Israeli government's propaganda about its settler-colonial attacks and war crimes in Gaza.  I posted a copy of the cartoon on my Red Butterfly Effect blog (click here) but I will also post it again below.

First Dog's (Andrew Marlton's) cartoons appear regularly in The Guardian.

First Dog on the Moon also has his own website, which you can check out here.

in solidarity, Kim


This cartoon first appeared in The Guardian’s online edition on 22 August, 2014



This cartoon first appeared in The Guardian’s online edition on 21 July, 2014

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