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Letters / Say no to racism

For da first time I read me letter oot on 3CR’s Rank an File Radio in an interview we a young, inspirational comrade trade unionist, journalist, Marcus Harringtaen.

I gave da letter in commemoration an solidarity tae me Chilean comrades on da 40th anniversary o da military coup against da democratically elected Popular Unity government o President Salavadore Allende who had been elected twice by popular vote.

Da British jets dat bombed da presidential palace were piloted be RAF an RAF-trained Chilean pilots; da CIA had organised da military Junta’s rise tae power.

With da millions o refugees streaming fae Africa, da Middle East, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Burma, da Philippines, Indonesia an many odar Asian nations an da most vicious assault an da continued attempted genocide o me First Nations family, I ask aa Shetlanders an da folk o Shetland tae open dair arms tae da families wha are getting murdered.

Can you imagine if it was happening tae your ane family?

Below is me letter! An here is da link tae me interview with Marcus Harringtaen on 3CR Community Radio Rank an File 855 AM

Remembrance Day 2010

First day came for da communists
An I did not speak out
Because I was not a communist

Dan day came for da socialists
An I did not speak out
Because I was not a socialist

Dan day came for da trade unionists
An I did not speak
Because I was not a trade unionist

Dan day came for da Jews
An I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew

An dare was no-one left
Tae speak out for me

Pastor Martin Niemoller (Protestant minister)

I decided tae repeat da Pastor’s words first o aa because I was inspired by Malachy Tallack’s Spaekalation on da Roma (Gypsy). Dan da recent racist attack on three women in Lerwick.

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On da night between 9 an 10 November 1938, 72 years ago this week, began da Kristaanacht when da windows o aa Jewish shops an businesses were smashed an closed down. Synagogues were burnt tae da ground, Jewish folk were declared tae be “vermin”, an da Holocaust had begun.

Before that tragic night on 22 March 1933 da first concentration camp at Dachau was open; on 2 May 1933 trade unions were dissolved.

I visited Dachau, near Munich, in 1982, it was one o da most profound experiences o me life. Me Dad had told me da history o Dachau while we sailed taegether in da early 1960s. ARBEIT MACHT FREI (Work Makes You Free) was da Nazi lie that framed da gate intae da death camp.

Jehovah Witnesses were criminalised on 1 April 1935; on 13 June 1938 was Gypsy Clean Up Week. Roma an Sinti reached da Auschwitz death camp on 26 February 1943. In Dachau, homosexual men, Christians wha resisted, an folk with mental health problems entered da electric fence, ringed, hell on earth.

When da war started Red Army soldiers entered da death camps. A mass grave o 4,000 Soviet soldiers was found after da war; day were not given dair rightful Prisoner o War (POW) status.

Germans, Austrians an Jews were da majority during da war. Catholic priests mostly from Poland were in da majority o Christian inmates, but Orthodox priests from Russia, Serbia an Greece, and Quakers were also interned. Politicians, royalty, actaers, musicians, teachers, journalists, everyone wha resisted da white supremacy’s master race ideology.

Medical tests on da inmates, germ warfare, an immersion in baths o ice tae assess how long it took until a person’s brain exploded through dair skull, operations on inmates without anaesthetic.

Resistance fighters from aa over occupied Europe including our comrades in Norway ended up being murdered in da death camps; 41,500 folk were murdered in Dachau, it was da smaaest death camp.

In 1936 da fascist General Franco invaded Spain from North Africa cheered on by da British establishment. King Edward VIII was a Nazi sympathizer; after his abdication he took da title “His Royal Highness da Duke o Windsor”, and new evidence finds that he was a collaborataer.

Hitler’s Luftwaffe an Mussolini’s air force bombed da Republican army; ‘Guernica’ Picasso’s famous painting depicted da slaughter. Da international Brigades went tae da republic’s aid. Scottish participation, percentage wise, was higher than anywhere else in da world.

Over one million dead before da Second World War had started: hundreds o thousands died in Franco’s death camps long after da Spanish Civil War had started; hundreds o thousands died in Franco’s death camps long after da Spanish Civil War had ended. Then thousands died, forcibly worked tae death, constructing this mausoleum in preparation for da dictators death, long after da 2nd World War had ended.

Da hierarchy o’ da Christian Churches led by da Vatican supported da Fascists an da Nazis during da Civil War.

In Australia racism encouraged by da mass media in subtle ways, an snapped up by da Lib/Nat (Tory) opposition – Muslims an refugees from war torn Iraq, Afghanistan an Tamils fleeing Sri Lanka are da new scape goats.

Da hatred spewing out against refugees at da public meetings where new detention centres are planned is palpable. We have been rallying ootside da detention centres in Maribyrnong, Melbourne shouting wir support ower da razor wire tae da folk imprisoned inside.

Da racism an injustice shown tae Aboriginal people is an international disgrace in da wealthy ‘Lucky Country’.

Shetlanders should unite an say ‘NO’ tae racism, education is da way forward, kindergarten, primary an secondary schools, families, aa codes o sport should take da lead, music which is Shetland’s global face has a responsibility tae tak a leading role.

I want tae apologise tae da women involved an der families, I am deeply sorry you experienced racist abuse an assault in Lerwick, me birthplace.

Davie Thomason

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