Commemorate the Frontier Wars with us this Anzac Day

Media Release
Media Release

20 April 2024

Ghillar, Michael Anderson, Convenor of the Sovereign Union, last surviving member of the founding four of the Aboriginal Embassy and Head of State of the Euahlayi Peoples Republic explains the profound importance of commemorating the Frontier Wars and the need to bury and memorialise the dead before we can go forward.


Media Release


“Anzac Day is a very profound day for many people and we acknowledge the services of those who have fallen in modern warfare. There are debates about the pros and cons of war all over the world and to say that we are not sitting on the proverbial knife’s edge of another world war would be an understatement.

“First Nations people within this country have extreme emotional ties to our land spiritually, emotionally, physically, and cannot ignore the fact that our Peoples resisted the British colonial invasion from Day One. History now reveals the extent of our losses. But it wasn’t just the loss of life. It almost destroyed the memory of our ancient past, which was governed by societal norms based on the spiritual Creation and the Laws set down by the Creators on how humankind must co-exist with nature. If we are to examine that relationship forensically we would find a very well-defined cyclical living interdependency. There was no need for inventing tools to increase nature’s productivity because we lived in small family clan units within a defined ecosystem and shared across the board with our fellow citizens when times were hard.

“The colonialists set out to invade and take lands from other people because they had lost their proper association with nature. From a western perspective, they are riddled with warfare. Enough was never enough and invasion was about exerting power over others for the natural resources to feed their exploding populations.

“With an emerging capitalist system even as far back as the 18th and 19th centuries, the conflict within those polities witnessed the growth of the haves and the have-nots. Consequently, the have-nots had to act to provide for themselves which meant stealing a loaf of bread or any other resources’ that would provide their offspring with sustenance to survive. On that tiny little island called England it got that bad that they had no room to build prisons. The haves had to rid themselves of the prison population and in doing so put them on ships to go beyond their shores in search of new riches.

“We, like other First Nations Peoples around the world, were confronted with these demonic ambitions and as a consequence of the western growth of a caste system, pagans, heathens and infidels were not seen as human. It was determined that because they did not have a recognisable power system of a centralise government system all was up for grabs and they usurped all that was before them in the new lands. Because they considered there was no system of governance Australian records show that, in their minds, we had no system of title or tenure to the land. Instead we were hunters and gatherers, who were considered to be still in the process of evolution and that the world that we lived in was of no consequence for us, because we did not place commercial value on anything that was natural. The mindset that developed was that it was just as good for us to wander over there instead of here, not realising of course that ‘here’ may have been a sacred place where Creation took place and the reverence that we had for that place was not able to be understood because so very few took the time to learn our language, so there was no real communication between the invader society and our Elders.

“Our Elders and youth of the time of invasion did resist and this is evidenced in stories written by the squattocracy and government officials and Lieutenant Cook himself. The resistance was one of armed confrontation but the gunpowder that they stole from the Chinese invention became the choice of weaponry that was used against spears and boomerangs.

“The Frontier Wars’ remembrance is about drawing attention to our People’s mass resistance to colonisation and the massive loss of life that we experienced.

“We must also acknowledge the horrible experiences of our young girls and women who were brutalised and we must also, as part of the truth-telling, acknowledge the horrors of babies being snuffed out because of this brutalisation.

“We cannot go on in this country without remembering those who have fallen on and within their own lands, given to them by divine Creation.

“I have reason to explain that I had a personal meeting David Hurley when he was the Governor of New South Wales, to discuss a pathway for my mob, the Euahlayi, to engage in a process of reconciliation. The condition that I put to him and his official minders, the navy and army, however, was that they must engage with us to locate the remains of our people who were massacred by squatters at Hospital Creek 9 kilometres northeast of Brewarrina. I said that we must engage in partnership to bury them as they were left to die in the open where their bodies were picked to pieces by wild animals and birds. So the murderers had no respect for our people, even after they killed them.

“This is just one story of many that we can tell.

“Lest we forget.”

Ghillar, Michael AndersonContact: Ghillar Michael Anderson
Convenor of the Sovereign Union,
Head of State of the Euahlayi Peoples Republic
Contact Details here