Archive for July, 2018

SWORD AND WORD BOTH ARE MIGHTY – GOVERNOR ARTHUR PHILLIP’S MILITARY CAMPAIGN FOR KING AND COUNTRY

Wednesday, July 11th, 2018

1790 – 13 December, Sydney Headquarters:‘ Put to death ten…bring in the heads of the slain…bring in two prisoners…I am resolved to execute the prisoners…in the most public and exemplary manner, in the presence of as many of their countrymen as can be collected’. Governor Phillip, General Orders to Captain Tench, cited, Marine Captain Watkin Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. F.L. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, Sydney, 1961

The reason Phillip gave for his ‘indiscriminate and disproportionate’ directive, putting no limit on barbarity, was the spearing of convict John M’Entyre by the warrior Pemulwuy that took place at Botany Bay in the early hours of 10 December 1790.

‘The cultural arrogance of the British was evident even before the First Fleet sailed. There was no recognition that the Aborigines had their own notion of right, that from their point of view they were entitled to defend themselves from invasion’. Professor Bruce Kercher, An Unruly Child, A History of Law in Australia, Allen and Unwin, 1995

Ostensibly Phillip’s orders of 13 December centred on Pemulwuy’s spearing of John M’Entire. But Phillip’s knowledge of M’Entire, his own game-keeper, makes nonsense of his claim they were unprovoked’.

‘On the 9th of the month, a serjeant of marines, with three [3] convicts, among whom was M’Entire, the governor’s game-keeper (the person of whom Baneelon had, on former occasions, shewn so much dread and hatred) went out on a shooting party’. Tench. ibid.

‘But in this business of M’Entire I [Phillip] am fully persuaded that they [Aborigines] were unprovoked’. The ‘but’ refers to Phillip’s ‘own spearing’ by Wileemarrin on Manly Beach three (3) months previously – September 1790. See: Manly, Location Location Location

A year earlier, December 1789, on Governor Phillip’s orders Bennalong had been kidnapped. He was held captive within British lines until escaping in May of 1790. Bennalong was the source of Phillip’s intelligence ‘dread and hatred’. See: Kidnapped – Manly What’s In A Name

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Previously ‘Terror’ Now -ARTHUR PHILLIP & JOHN MACARTHUR ‘A MAN WHO MADE ENEMIES’

Wednesday, July 11th, 2018

During Lord Sydney’s time as secretary of state, the Home Office was a clearing house. Its jurisdiction included overseeing of naval officers involved in trade regulation, secret service and special projects. As a result, Sydney crossed paths with three men who left their mark on [Australia’s European] history – Horotio Nelson, William Bligh and Arthur Phillip. Andrew Tink, Life and Times of Tommy Townshend, 2001

Horatio Nelson, William Bligh and Arthur Phillip, each can be linked to the suffering and degradation experienced by Australia’s First Peoples following Britain’s invasion of New Holland, now Australia.

‘Macarthur’s haughty quarrelsome nature which manifested itself on the voyage was to provoke much more conflict after his arrival in New South Wales in June 1790’. Michael Flynn, The Second Fleet, Britain’s Grim Armada of 1790, Library of Australian History, Sydney 1993

Sydney Cove – June 1790:  Following the coming of a second fleet in June 1790, Lieutenant John ‘MacMafia’ Macarthur of the New South Wales Corps aboard Scarborough, in the context of Britain’s ‘special projects, trade, secret service’, can be added to the mix of those whose lives remain scarred by his ‘mark’ on Australia’s modern history. See: A Tale of Two Fleets 

Macarthur’s ‘conflict’ sprang from self-interest. His ‘private benefit’ threatened to bring to nought Whitehall’s ambitious future plans for a very ‘special project’ in the southern oceans.  See Proximity Not Distance Drove Britain’s Invasion of New Holland.

The Southern Oceans not only had the potential to be a blockade-breaker in time of war the route opened up a long-sought opportunity for the Royal Navy to attack and loot Spain’s Central and South American Pacific Ocean ‘treasure’ colonies.

‘John Macarthur, a central figure in the military ‘mafia’ which quickly established itself as Australia’s first governing and property elite’.  Nigel Rigby, Peter Van Der Merwe, Glyn Williams, Pacific Explorations, National Maritime Museum Greenwich, Adlard Coles. Bloomsbury,  2018  

Falmouth:  The second fleet, government contracted to Calvert, Camden and King a firm of London slave traders, embarked 1038 predominately male convicts, 368 died on the voyage.

Neptune embarked 424 men and 78 of the fleet’s 304  women prisoners. Of these 147 men and 11 females died during the passage, 269 landed sick.

Suprize  carried 252 men, 42 died during the passage, 121 landed sick. Scarborough with 256 had 68 deaths, 96 landing sick.

Many sick survivors died within a  month or so of landing.  Australian historian Michael Flynn rightly named the second fleet ‘Britain’s Grim Armada’.

Yet when Donald Trial master of Neptune appeared in the dock of London’s Old Bailey accused of dereliction of duty and the murder of two (2) of Neptune’s crew he was acquitted.

London – Horatio Nelson: Trail had served under Nelson. It is believed either, due to the great man’s presence in the court-room or, a favourable character reference from the hero of Trafalgar  Trail walked from court a free man. See: Arthur Phillip – Christopher Robin Mark l

Sydney Cove –  William Bligh: In August 1806 Captain William ‘Bounty’ Bligh RN arrived to take up his commission as Britain’s fourth ‘autocratic naval governor’ of New South Wales.

Sydney Cove – 26 January 1808:  A coup – on the 20th anniversary of the First Fleet’s landing at Sydney Cove, at the instigation of John Macarthur by then an-ex-officer, Major George  Johnson of the New South Wales Corps, seized and imprisoned Governor William Bligh RN. See: Australia Day Rebellion 26 January 1808

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