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« Independence from PNG: A core belief for many Bougainvilleans | Main | Agatha »

11 June 2018


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Andy McNabb

Good to see KJ wielding the knife in the name of free speech.

It looks as though KJ was here before the aboriginals, such the wombat that he is.

Chris Overland

I do not think that the current concern about the expansion of Chinese influence in the Pacific arises because of fears of a possible invasion of Australia or anywhere else for that matter.

They stem from the fact that China is ruled by an authoritarian government that has no democratic legitimacy. The Communist Party of China achieved power through the barrel of a gun and remains in power because of that fact to this day.

While the Chinese government apparently is not bent upon world conquest or the pursuit of lebensraum, at least at the moment, its true ambitions in the Pacific remain opaque.

History suggests that nations spending a great deal of money upon their penurious neighbours are not doing so based purely on altruism. There is always a quid pro quo eventually.

Also, we can very certain that China does not intend to be bound by any rules based notion of international relations and that is a major concern.

That said, at least China is a more or less rational actor upon the world stage, which is more than can be said for a Trump led USA.

As for the ongoing invasion of Australia which commenced in 1788, it continues apace. Last year, the net inflow of migrants hit 182,165 or about 123 times as many people who turned up on the first fleet.

Phil may be delighted to know that 2,087,800 Australians (10.4% of the population) self describe as being of Irish descent. No wonder St Patrick's Day is so popular!

In the context of concerns about any possible Chinese invasion, it is note worthy that 5.6% of the population or 1,213,903 people are of Chinese origin. They are well represented in all facets of Australian life and many are 5th and 6th generation Australians, not recent arrivals.

People of Indian origin now number around 500,000 of the population and this number looks certain to grow rapidly over the next few years. I guess this explains why shops specialising in curries and Chicken Tikka Masala (strangely, invented in Glasgow and much beloved of white Anglo-Saxons in the UK) are appearing in growing numbers.

So, in a sense, the much feared (by Pauline Hanson et al) Asian invasion has already occurred. Amazingly, the civilised world as we know it has not ended, so Pauline has decided that demonising all Muslims on the basis of the actions of Islamic fascists is the way to go.

So, all in all, we should be welcoming the middle class diaspora from PNG with open arms. What a splendid addition to the mix they will be.

The irony is that, as our nearest neighbours and with many historic links to Australia, Papua New Guineans have been amongst the last to join the invaders.

They have perhaps been too polite for their own good and, as their own country falls into apparently terminal decline, maybe now is the best possible time to bang on our door and ask to join us.

We can just chuck another snag on the barbie and welcome them to their new home, just like we have been doing for the last 200 years or so.

Philip Fitzpatrick

The oldest remains were found at Lake Mungo, Paul - around 42,000 years old.

Kow Swamp is a curious find. There were claims that some of the skeletons were of homo erectus but this has been disputed. All the skeletal material was fragmented and difficult to deal with but it gave dates of about 13,000 years.

The other claim from Kow Swamp was that it demonstrated that there had been successive waves of migration, although this has been disputed too.

Significant finds in the Top End, not of human remains but of evidence of human occupation have pushed the date back to 65,000 years.

To invade somewhere you have to have people to conquer so despite what Andy says Australia has only been invaded once.

As far as can be ascertained the Aborigines were the original inhabitants.

Just another note. 'Aborigine' in the Australian context is a proper noun. 'Aboriginal' is an adjective, as in 'Aboriginal people'.

Andy sounds a tad biased against Aborigines so I won't argue the point further.

Paul Oates

My limited understanding is that people originally arrived in Australia in a number of waves. The first were roughly 60,000 years ago and there are some of their remains at a place called 'Cow swamp'.

The second wave were like the people who ended up in Tasmania after being pushed out by those who then arrived later. The Torres Strait people were originally from PNG.

Since there are no written records, it appears it's all conjecture anyway.

We are all migrants or descendants of migrants.

Andy McNabb

Phil, Australia has been invaded twice. The first invasion was the aboriginals via the (previous) land bridge in the Torres Strait.

The second invasion was in 1788.

I do hope you are not going to say that the aboriginals have been here since time immemorial. They were migrants.

Your arithmetic needs brushing up.

Or maybe your history needs brushing up, Andy - KJ.

"It is true that there has been, historically, a small number of claims that there were people in Australia before Australian Aborigines, but these claims have all been refuted and are no longer widely debated.

"The overwhelming weight of evidence supports the idea that Aboriginal people were the first Australians."

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