Reprinted from www.libertylobby.org, home of The SPOTLIGHT archive
Gun Grab Underway in Australia
The banning and collecting of privately-owned long guns is proceeding in Australia. All rebellion seems to have fizzled out. Gun owners -- and pro-gun groups -- who demonstrated vigorously last year have apparently rolled over and are cooperating with the federal government gun grab. If they don't they could be arrested and jailed.
But here's an interesting twist: Australia is after long guns; owners of pistols (handguns) who have licenses are allowed to keep them, according to Geoff Muirden of the Australian Civil Liberties Union.
Long guns are being collected and destroyed. Early figures indicate approximately 160,000 have been surrendered in Victoria, 60,000 in New South Wales and 60,000 in Queensland with the other states having lower figures. The pro-grab media is overjoyed.
Rebecca Peters, president of an anti-gun group called the National coalition for Gun control (NCGC) said: "The Victoria government (i.e., the government of the state of Victoria had agreed to let shooters with existing licenses keep their weapons -- without showing they had a reason to won them -- until their licenses expired."
According to published reports, "A spokesman for Victoria Australia Police Minister Bill McGrath said most license holders only had a few years left on their licenses." What happens when they attempt to renew is not clear.
"The problem is for new gun owners to get licenses,' Muirden told The SPOTLIGHT in a telephone interview from Victoria. "New laws make it very difficult."
A government booklet titled Victoria's New Firearms Laws states that applicants must have a genuine reason' for applying for a license to own and use a handgun, and these "genuine reasons" are for:
"This last category could be a euphemism allowing government officials who want to quell disturbances or control citizens to won a handgun, "Muirden said.
NO BILL OF RIGHTS
He pointed out that "there is no provision for an 'inalienable right' to won guns and there is no category allowing ownership or use of a handgun for self- protection.
First to be visited in the government's house-to-house gun collection were those people who had registered their weapons. Gun owners who registered their weapons. Gun owners who registered their weapons but did not comply with the new regulation are now faced with the fact that their name is flagged on government computers. They are liable to four years' imprisonment and a fine in the thousands of dollars, if they don't comply with the confiscation.
Those with firearms licenses and those who did not hand in their known weapons are liable for search of their person and/or premises without warrant. Even organizing against the confiscation could be considered illegal under a provision against "subverting another to commit a criminal act."
Long guns being confiscated include:
A number of Australian publication have printed eyewitness accounts putting large numbers of foreign troops -- including U.S. forces in Australia. The U.S. troops are rumored to be "assisting" in the gun confiscation as part of "urban warfare training.