Melbourne Anarchist Archives Index

A Short History of TREASON (1968)

The spontaneous formation of Treason was publicly announced in the following letter to Farrago on Friday, May 6th, 1966.

Dear Comrade,
We wish to announce the inauguration of TREASON - The Revolutionary Emancipists Against State Oppression and Nationalism. We have a world wide membership - in the name of individuality and freedom resolute in its resistance to oppression as inhibitive of freedom and nationalism as a cause of war.

On Open-Day, local representatives will man an information booth in Wilson Hall to reveal to the peoples their true cause of discontent.

In this venture, TREASON is supported by two million Vietnamese peasants, Socrates, 20,000 Parisian citizens, Bruno, all Christian martyrs, Turkish victims of the Crusades, Servetus, one million dead Spaniards, 100,000 Ukranians, six million Jews, 150,000 victims of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, Sacco and Vanzetti, Hus, Cranmer and all other individuals and groups availing themselves of the abundant opportunities for martyrdom, graciously supplied by the Government and States.

Yours for imminent insurrection,

John V. Paull,
Andrew G. Peters.

The eruption of TREASON was also announced in the national daily "The Australian" shortly afterwards on the Martin Collins page.

Members set up an open revolutionary committee and one of its first acts was to send $4 to the victims of the Italian floods.

For the visit of a notorious American on the last day of third term 1966, TREASON produced, 1,000 badges with the slogan "Defeat U.S. Cultural Aggression", which sold out in twenty-four hours. Treason members were prominent among those organising the demonstrations which unfortunately flopped due to lack of co-ordination of other organisers. However, some Treason members were able to witness police state methods outside Government House the same night. Members were also prominent downtown during the exams, distributing "Facts About the Anti-LBJ Demonstrations."

In Orientation Week 1967 Treason had a stand enabling many new members to join. Also an address was given by Mr. Ron Silverstein on the Crimes Act - the talk be illustrated with completely incomprehensible diagrams.

On open day, Treason also created a display which made an impression on many visitors. The badge "I AM AN ENEMY OF THE STATE" had been produced and was distributed to the masses.

The next task was organising a team for the SCHAES Trike Race - held at the end of first term. A team of two cars and seven people ten minutes before the race grew to six cars and more than twenty people in five minutes. TREASON performed magnificently completing the sixty miles from Portsea to Parkville despite mechanical damage and internal factions. The eighty-ninth anniversary of the death of Russian Anarchist Mikhail Alexandrovitch Bakunin - was celebrated early in second term by Bakunin Week.

Bakunin Week activities commenced on Monday, 3rd July at 5.18 a.m. at the South Melbourne tram depot. Here comrades gathered with placards in six languages to greet our friends abroad in the world-wide television show "Our World". However, due to avoidance of us by the ABC, in fact political censorship, we were unable to communicate our messages around the world.

Unarmed with Bakunin's philosophy, "The desire to destroy can also be a creative desire", members continued their creative activities during Bakunin week, ending with the Bakunin party under the black flag.

Later in the term, the first annual Mikhail Alexandrovitch Bakunin memorial lecture delivered by Mr. Peter Thomson of the department of Sociology. His topic was "Duncan Dundonald - Scottish Syndicalist and The Quintessence of Anarchism".

Early in third term, the first annual Prince Peter Kropotkin memorial lecture was delivered by Mr. Paddy Evans on the topic "On Student Poverty". This talk was well attended by history and social work students, and the press. For the remainder of the year, Treason evolved into factions, with rival factions producing their own newsheets - Contumacy and Stateless. Unfortunately the rivalry has disintegrate as the Contumacy faction has sought self-exile in Tasmania.

This year, among other activities, Treason hopes to inaugurate memorial lectures remembering Monty Miller, Molly Maguire, Pierre Joseph Proudhon, "Big" Bill Haywood, Eugene V. Debs, Albert Parsons, Enrico Malatesta, Joe Hill and others, produce revolutionary theories on education, present correct accounts of history, particularly where it has been distorted by marxists, communists and their stooges, and capitalists, and promote opposition to oppression, suppression and agression practised by politicians and other authoritarians.

Relevant Links

[ Top of Page ] [ Melbourne Anarchist Archives Index ] [ Radical Tradition Contents ]