Comment: Sasha Uzunov, Editor, Alternate Comms website

Considering Victorian State Premier Jacinta Allan’s critical stance on British colonialism in Australia and a possible treaty with Indigenous Australians, her government should grant late 19th century Irish outlaw “bushranger” Ned Kelly and his comrades a posthumous amnesty and declare them as de facto combatants against the British Empire. The Irish in Australia cannot be left out when discussing the impact of British colonialism.

In 1770 British naval officer then Lieutenant James Cook claimed what turned out to be Australia for the British Empire. Native indigenous peoples were dispossessed of their lands by British settlers, including convicts forcibly transported against their will. Many Irish were forced to flee their homeland of Ireland which had been under British colonial rule for over 500 years.

Irish rebellions had broken out against British rule. An argument can be made that a state of war or a war of resistance existed against British rule, which continued in the British colonies in Australia, including Victoria. 

New Zealand-Australian-Britisher Nancy Wake who was sent by the British behind enemy lines to aid the French Resistance in German occupied France during WW2 ordered the killing of French Vichy Police who collaborated with Germany. 

Wake and the French Resistance de-railed trains, robbed banks, stole horses and livestock, blew up factories etc. On her orders the French Resistance executed French “traitors.” She isn’t a criminal. She is a heroine. The French Resistance recruited all sorts of people from academics to housewives to petty thieves, gamblers, prostitutes, cattle rustlers etc. 

 Why is Irishman in British Colonial Victoria Ned Kelly who in 1878 killed British colonial police, including Irishmen collaborating with a foreign occupying power Britain, a criminal? A state of war existed between British the Empire and Ireland, even in the then British Colony of Victoria, now a state in Australia. Ned Kelly was a de facto combatant in this war. Kelly, himself, referenced his battle with British Colonial people of Victoria in terms of British persecution of the Irish.

Ned Kelly was hanged in 1880 in Melbourne for killing three British colonial policeman.

Moreover, Victoria Police now “acknowledges” that Indigenous Australians are the traditional owners of Victoria, which means Victoria’s legal system is “illegal” – so how is Ned Kelly a “criminal” for breaking laws of an “illegal legal system” to begin with?  Victoria Police cannot have it both ways. if it acknowledges indigenous Australians as the traditional owners of Australia, it cannot justify in portraying Ned Kelly as a latter day 21st century street thug and murderer. What Victoria Police should do if it wants to treat Ned Kelly as a criminal and cop killer is not acknowledge indigenous Australians as the original owners of Australia.

Victorian Parliament is now negotiating a “treaty” with Indigenous Australians and the Victorian Premier.

In 1916 the Easter Rebellion broke out in Ireland to fight for Irish independence from the British Empire. The Proclamation read out during the uprising highlighted a state of war existed for centuries:

We declare the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of Ireland and to the unfettered control of Irish destinies, to be sovereign and indefeasible. The long usurpation of that right by a foreign people and government has not extinguished the right, nor can it ever be extinguished except by the destruction of the Irish people. In every generation the Irish people have asserted their right to national freedom and sovereignty; six times during the past three hundred years they have asserted it in arms. Standing on that fundamental right and again asserting it in arms in the face of the world, we hereby proclaim the Irish Republic as a Sovereign Independent State, and we pledge our lives and the lives of our comrades in arms to the cause of its freedom, of its welfare, and of its exaltation among the nations

What followed the Easter Uprising, after it was quickly and brutally put down, was the Anglo-Irish War or Irish War of Independence of 1919-21, and the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1921, all Irish prisoners, combatants etc who attacked British police in Ireland were released and given an amnesty of sorts. Up till 1942, Britain controlled Australia’s Foreign Policy, which means the Anglo-Irish Treaty would’ve also applied to Australia. 

The present Victorian Parliament should enact an amnesty – not a pardon – for Ned Kelly and “his gang” as “combatants” against the British Empire. 

– Earlier story on Ned Kelly here at this link


Victorian Premier Allan’s government has financed a number of organisations, such as sports bodies AFL (Australian Football League – governing body of Australian Rules Football), and Tennis Australia to the tune of hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars. These sports bodies promote to young impressionable Australians minds US nationalism, including symbols of white American nationalism such as the NFL (American Football – Grid Iron), a sports body condemned by native Americans for its nasty colonial behaviour towards them.

Tennis Australia has allowed US tennis player Jessica Pegula for the past three years to promote US NFL team, the Buffalo Bills, named in “honour” of a 19th century white American nationalist from the Wild West era who took part in the extermination of native indigenous Americans.

This blatant contradiction raises the question is the Premier’s concern about the impact of British Colonialism on indigenous Australians genuine or is it a clever smokescreen to remove Cultural Britishness from Australian culture and create a vacuum or space that will be filled by US cultural nationalism?