At the round-up of the Melbourne Woomera2002 network the great fundraising collective had managed to get so much cash together there was some left over. A proposal was agreed upon that some money be put aside to fund a publication of reflections and analysis of the protests. Seven long, disorganised months later that publication is finally completed.
We want to stress that this publication does not seek to represent the Melbourne Woomera2002 network or the protest as a whole. Although we tried to make the publication as diverse as possible we recognise that editorial decisions are always subjective and as such it is impossible to pretend to represent anyone. We were originally hoping for a book, but fiscal reality forced us into tabloid.
The struggle against detention certainly didn't end post-Woomera. In fact, the Federal Government continues with the construction of Fortress Australia, and fewer and fewer people are even making it to our shores. Many remain incarcerated and the government is shifting most of those from Woomera to the new, high-tech Baxter Detention Centre outside Port Augusta.
Though there is much to sadden us, our hope in documenting some of what happened at the Woomera2002 protests is to give inspiration. Certainly the protests inspired many both here and around the world, more so for the fact that so many people would travel so far to protest the inhumanity of the camps without the expectation of pulling off such a spectacular action. It has to be stressed that the struggle and breakout from Woomera Detention Centre was as much the work of those struggling for dignity and freedom behind the wire as of those outside.
Whilst eleven people remain free as a result of the escape, protestors, both inside and out, have suffered, and ongoing solidarity is always required. We include contacts below.
We hope this publication goes some way to developing a more critical and reflective activist culture and contributes to the struggles against borders around the world.
Dedicated to all those denied the freedom to move and the freedom to stay.