The New Guard Movement was formed in Sydney in February, 1931. Like the Old Guard Movement which was still in existence the movement stood for unswerving loyalty to the Crown, all for the British Empire, sane and honourable government throughout Australia.
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The movement suppressed any disloyal and immoral elements in the government, abolition of machine politics and the maintenance of full liberty for the individual.
Executive members of both organisations were generally retired officers of the First World War, men of business and rich graziers generally of the wheat belt.
These men were deeply suspicious of the Labour Premier of New South Wales, Jack Lang, and his political and economic response to the Great Depression
With the support of the New Guard, late in November, 1931, 500 citizens from Binnaway and surrounding district assembled at an open air meeting in the town.
They decided to order an alleged Communist to sell his property and leave town.
The meeting resolved to insist that all Communist activity in Binnaway cease, and that citizens refuse to buy or sell to Communists.
Two Communists left the town hurriedly, but William Thompson claimed to be a non Communist, and as a Labor supporter remained.
Decoyed from his home five months later, he was kidnapped at the dead of night.
His kidnappers trussed him up mercilessly, taken into the lonely country side and branded like an animal with the mark of Communism, the letters R.E.D.
On his forehead the letters were inscribed with nitrate of silver for all to see and take warning.
This was the fate of William Thompson of Binnaway, a small farmer, who was alleged to have incurred the displeasure of the New Guard.
His four kidnappers bound him tightly, saying they were from the New Guard.
Little did William Thompson know what awaited him when at two o’clock in the morning he was aroused from his bed by the honking of a motor car horn.
His farm is on the banks of the Castlereagh River, and the road runs close to his front door. William Thompson arose and went to where four men were standing besides a motor car.
They told him the machine had broken down and asked him whether he would assist them in trying to start the engine.
William Thompson readily complied, and for his trouble received a stunning blow on the head with some heavy instrument, likely a tyre lever. As he fell, one of the men struck and kicked him in the jaw.
They then fell upon him, wrapped him in a blanket and drove him 20 miles along the Binnaway-Coolah road.
Thompson was groaning from the pain inflicted, but his captors had little to say in explanation of their deed other than they were from the New Guard.
He was not a communist, but a Labor supporter who had widely made it known that he was opposed to the New Guard organisation.
At a lonely spot the car was driven to the side of the road, Thompson was released and the men then drove away.
The victim painfully dragged himself to his feet.
Hardly able to struggle along he at last reached the settlement at Weetalibah.
There he rested for time to conserve his energy, as he was almost in the state of collapse when reached the home of a friend and told him what had happened.
There on his forehead was the brand to confirm his story.
The police were unable to track the offenders.
After the dismissal of the Lang Labor Government in May, 1932, and with an improving economy, the New and Old Guard lost much of their momentum.
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