EYES WIDE SHUT – A MILITARY CAMPAIGN & ARTHUR PHILLIP

‘The pattern of conflict in Australia ran parallel to the pattern of settlement. From the early days around Sydney Cove the hostility of the Aboriginal Peoples to the depredations of the whites was clear to all’. Jeffrey Grey, A Military History of Australia, The British Period 1788-1870, Cambridge Press, 2001

1787 – 25 April – London: ‘Live in amity and kindness with them’. His Majesty George III, Instructions to Captain Arthur Phillip RN commander of a large armed squadron of eleven (11) ships – two (2) warships, six (6) troop transports and three (3) supply vessels, known in Britain as the ‘First Fleet’. See: A Riddle – When an invasion fleet was not an invasion fleet? When it’s the ‘First Fleet’.

Extravagant lies, none are more destructive than, ‘amity kindness’.

1790 – 13 December Sydney: ‘Bring in six [6] of those natives who reside near the head of Botany Bay; or if that should be found impractical…put that number to death…bring in the heads of the slain…bring away two [2] prisoners to execute in the most public and exemplary manner, in the presence of as many of their countrymen as can be collected’. ‘. General Orders: Governor Arthur Phillip RN to Marine Captain Watkin Tench. Cited Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. F.L Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, 1961.

Did Britain invade New Holland?

‘Twenty-five regiments of British infantry served in the colonies between 1790 and 1870. They fought in one of the most prolonged frontier wars in the history of the British empire, and for the first half of their stay were probably more frequently in action than the garrison of any other colony besides that of southern Africa’. Dr Peter Stanley, The Remote Garrison,The British Army in Australia, 1788-1870, Kangaroo Press, 1986

Why did Britain invade New Holland?

‘From the coast of China it lies not more than about a thousand leagues, and nearly the same distance from the East Indies, from the Spice Islands about seven hundred leagues, and near a month’s run from Cape of Good Hope…or suppose we were again involved in a war with Spain, here are ports of shelter and refreshment for our ships, should it be necessary to send any into the South Sea’. Admiral Sir George Young, Plan [New Holland] to Home Secretary Lord Sydney, Historical Records of New South Wales, Vol. 1

In time of global war 1793 – 1815 a military presence in support of a naval base on the south eastern coast of New Holland – Australia – could frustrate French efforts to mount an effective economic blockade of island England by providing secure alternate sea-routes to India, Africa, China and South America via the Southern Oceans.

‘New Holland is a good blind, then, when we want to add to the military strength of India’. Historical Records of New South Wales. Anon.

 

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