The Colt is coming. It has already caused a stir

 “The Colt With no Regrets”, a memoir written by veteran journalist and author Elliot Hannay, is expected to renew public debate on the resurgence of white supremacists in today’s society, China’s worsening relationships with Australia and public distrust of media outlets in a new era a “fake news”.

In a foreword, former editor-in-chief of The Australian, Chris Mitchell, says the book, to be released by Wilkinson Publishing in April 2020, talks about “the truths of journalism”.

“These stories struck a nerve with me. Many are whimsical and speak of the truths of journalism from the days of hot metal printing. Days when the public bar was a training ground for young reporters, journalists spoke to their sources daily and drank with them often. Reporters rang police direct and there were no police media departments to hide the truth from reporters and their readers or protect the police force and its political masters from scrutiny.

            “Elliot has written a highly entertaining and amusing book that includes something for everyone, but especially for journalists interested in their craft and some of the big social and political issues still driving it.”

The late Archie Smallwood, one of the most courageous and effective Indigenous activists in the North during the land rights and native title era of the 1970’s and 1980’s. Along with Eddie Mabo, Charles Perkins, Professor Henry Reynolds and Bob Katter junior, Eddie was targeted by an Australian chapter of the Ku Klux Klan who confronted me in my editor’s office forty years ago.

Echoes of the Klan still with us today

A book to be released by Wilkinson Publishing later this year sensationally reveals that Ku Klux Klan affiliates were working behind the scenes in Australia in a desperate bid to block Mabo and the Indigenous land rights movement in the 1980s.

Author and veteran journalists Elliot Hannay says his memoir “‘The Colt With no Regrets” contains details of an encounter with well-connected Klansmen that has been kept confidential for almost 40 years because of his commitment to an off-the record meeting with the group who feared the country was about to be taken over by black radicals.

“I was moved to go public after all these years because I’m now hearing echoes of the Klan in today’s so-called patriotic rallies and on the floor of The Senate. It would seem that the racist views expressed with such fear and hatred in my editor’s office in Townsville two generations ago, have found new homes and new supporters in today’s society. History shows that bigots will often seek shelter under the banner of patriotism” he said.

Ku Klux Klan, between 1921 and 1922. Library of Congress. LC-DIG-npcc-30454

“I did my best to get the Klan to come out from under their rock and be quoted but in the end had to reluctantly agree to their request for anonymity. They mainly wanted to complain about editorials I had written but stunned me when they actively sought my support in their clandestine campaign to silence Eddie Mabo and his supporters  and stop land rights in its tracks.

“I will have to take their names to my grave, but with encouragement from old colleagues and some of the Aboriginal activist families from that era, I have decided to write about how this sinister group with roots in the Southern States of America, gained a foothold in Australia.

“These were not your usual run of redneck ratbags… they were serious people from the commercial and political end of town.  That’s what made my encounter so disturbing and why I feel so relieved that this story will finally make the public record.”