Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

November 30, 2007

For the Yaqui children in Mexico

I'tom Hiaki Usims - Hiaki Vatgua Betana wa'a "Dia de Reyes" Vetichivo
The Alianza Indigena and Yoeme Comission on Human Rights are raising funds to support the cross cultural international event of "El Dia de Los Reyes Magos" the "3 King Magician Day" that falls on Sunday, January 6 2007. This will be our second year of the event-Last year we provided gifts, clothing and fruit baskets to over 300 Yaqui Children from Las Guasimas, an ocean front Yaqui village and Guasimitas, a rural Yaqui village in Rio Yaqui, Sonora, Mexico. This year we are short on monetary donations, children's clothing, jackets, shoes and blankets. The goodwill trip is scheduled for the weekend of January 4 through January 6, 2008.
The Yoeme Commission on Human Rights & Alianza Indigena will be participating in the Casino Del Sol Tamal & Heritage Festival on Saturday, December 1, 2007, COME AND JOIN US FOR THIS GREAT EVENT AND BUY TAMALES ON BEHALF OF "I'TOM USIMS" or send your donation to: Alianza Indigena Sin Fronteras; P.O. Box 826; Tucson, Arizona 85701 Should you have any questions you can contact: David Jaimez - 520-5782399 Thomasina Jaimez - 520- 861-9297 Jose R. Matus - 520-979-2125

Challenge to uranium mining, poisoning water, on Lakota lands

CONTACT: Debra White Plume, Executive Director, Owe Aku
Kent Lebsock, Owe Aku International Human Rights Project:

Seven Petitioners File for Hearing on Uranium Mine Expansion
First Request for Nuclear Regulatory Commission Hearing in 17 Years

“The entire issue is water, which is life itself, and our struggle is to protect it.” Thomas Cook

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- On November 12, 2007, seven Petitioners from parts of the poorest region in the United States asked the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to participate in decisions relative to uranium mining and its harmful effects in northwestern Nebraska and the Lakota (Sioux) Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in Southwest South Dakota . According to NRC sources, this is the first request to intervene in an NRC proceeding relating to the expansion of an existing uranium mining operation in approximately 17 years. The petitioners are Thomas Cook, Chadron Native American Center, Slim Buttes Agricultural Development Corp., High Plains Community Development Corp., Western Nebraska Resources Council, Debra White Plume, and an Oglala Lakota nonprofit organization called Owe Aku.
Canadian-owned Crow Buttes Resources, Inc. (CBR) is asking the NRC for a permit to expand uranium mining in and around Petitioners’ towns, farms, and Indian territories. Petitioners assert that CBR’s process currently consumes and contaminates 4.7 billion gallons of water per year from the High Plains Aquifer which is also the water source to communities in eight western states. The petition (see for text) challenges CBR’s request for an additional 2.4 billion gallons a year to expand its operations. CBR's application is made while drought is depleting the aquifers at 160% of recharge.

In addition to the use of additional valuable water resources, CBR has admitted to:
§ a spill of approximately 300,000 gallons of radioactive liquid waste at its mine in Crawford , Nebraska ;
§ failure to clean up one-third of the spills equaling approximately 100,000 gallons of radioactive liquid waste;
§ admission that a broken coupling led to a one gallon per minute leak for several years into the Brule aquifer. It is believed that the leak resulted in toxic contamination of at least 525,000 gallons of water per year; and
§ admission of a leak that contaminated 25,000 sq. ft. of the Brule aquifer.
From existing operations, CBR has had no less than 23 reported leaks of radioactive material. Petitioners assert that this contradicts CBR’s statements that they have operated without any environmental impact and indicates that CBR should not be allowed to expand its existing operations. As one member of the Western Nebraska Resources Counsel stated, “In our book, you clean up your first mess before you are allowed the opportunity to create a new mess.”

Petitioners are asking the NRC for a chance to submit evidence that a slow-moving, underground radioactive plume of contaminated water is moving through several inter-connected aquifers. It is believed that CBRs admitted contamination of the aquifer “plumes” through the Arikaree, Brule and High Plains aquifers. CBR’s expansion application to the NRC states that the toxins that have leaked into the aquifers probably enter the human body through water as well as food sources exposed to the contamination. These toxins include Radon-222, Thorium, Uranium and inorganic Arsenic. As part of the application process, Petitioners seek an evaluation of CBR’s proposed expansion relative to the health and environment of people and wildlife relying on the aquifers. The Arikaree aquifer lies directly under the Oglala Lakota Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Petitioners believe there is a link between 98 wells that were closed on the Western side of the Reservation because of radioactive contamination and unusual incidences of cancer, kidney disease, birth defects, miscarriages and infant brain seizures.

Indigenous Petitioners from Native American communities also assert that the United Nations’ Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples applies. Article 32 acknowledges that Indigenous peoples have a right to “free, prior and informed consent” with respect to development, utilization or exploitation of mineral resources. It further provides that “[s]tates shall provide effective mechanisms for just and fair redress for any such activities, and appropriate measures shall be taken to mitigate adverse environmental … impact.” To date, no opportunity has been provided for members of the Oglala Sioux Tribe or Native communities to analyze CBR’s License Amendment or its affect on Indigenous lands and resources. Petitioners stress that it would be entirely consistent with international human rights standards if the NRC affirms the Indigenous peoples’ right to intervene in the permit process for CBR’s application.

It is currently unknown when to expect a decision from the NRC.
Kent Lebsock
Owe Aku (Bring Back the Way)
International Justice & Human Rights Project

Weekend in Solidarity with Political Prisoners

Saturday, December 1 & Sunday, December 2
Saturday, 12/1Jericho Boston Presents
The ShootoutPerformance artist, Jihad Abdul-Mumit will present The Shootout, a two-person theater performance and workshop. The Shootout is a two-man dramatization depicting the spiritual and psychological divisions that have historically ripped apart just about every semblance of unity amongst African Americans. The Shootout starts right from the beginning when Africans were snatched so violently and decisively from Mother Africa. The play speaks to the many problems people are confronted with. Among the root causes of violence in oppressed communities are economic exploitation, social underdevelopment and the colonial relationship between the community and those in power. CORI and other draconian laws have been passed to keep people marginalized and disenfranchised, while prison expansion cuts in education continue.
Read more ...

Border wall plans ignore environmental justice rules


By No Border Wall

RIO GRANDE, Texas -- In the recently released Rio Grande Valley Tactical Infrastructure Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), the Department of Homeland Security attempts to brush aside issues of environmental justice in its plans for the border wall. Although the Rio Grande Valley’s population is over 85% minority, and its border communities are some of the poorest in the nation, the EIS states that the impacts of the proposed border wall “would not fall disproportionately on minority or low-income populations.”

November 29, 2007

Sunset Water Ceremony Ballona Wetlands

Sunset Sacred Water Ceremony in Ballona Wetlands closes American Indian Heritage Month Closing Ceremony Friday, November 30, 2007
By Joanelle Romero
LOS ANGELES -- As the sun sets over the ocean on the last day of November, American Indian Heritage Month comes to a close. We will gather in sacred circle in the historic Ballona Wetlands Freshwater Marsh, the ancient burial grounds of our Gabrieleno, Tongva and Shoshone ancestors to hold a Respecting the Water of Life ceremony. In our ceremony, we will first honor our ancestors with drum and song. We will then cup water in our hands and receive its blessing. We whisper our intention over the water, including healing for contaminated waters around the globe. We also offer thanks for all the blessings, new connections and understandings we have received during our Heritage Month. We will release the water into the West, transmitting our vision of all peoples seeing the sacredness shining through all forms of life and finding connectedness across their diversity. We then will send this vision into the waters and across the sea. Our American Indian Heritage Month events, held throughout the City, honored American Indians as our nation's first environmentalists. The whole month of November was a call for American Indians to come out in pride and share the light of our traditions. All of our events served to inspire respect for Mother Earth and the balance of life. During this historic month in Los Angeles, in this important juncture in time, we shared our sacred ceremonies that attune us with Mother Earth. We also invited non-Natives to participate and experience the magic of these traditions with us.We are closing with the sacred water ceremony in prayer and respect for all the Ancestors who have come before us and have continued to inspire us to create a national healing of the Sacred Hoop of Life, which includes all colors, all relations, all peoples, plants, animals, water, the sun, the moon, star nations, thunder beings and our grandchildren’s grandchildren. The purpose of this sacred water ceremony and of American Indian Heritage Month in the City of Los Angeles is to encourage us to ask our selves profound questions: “What do we want to tell our grandchildren that we did to make a difference now? What commitment have you made? What pledge have you taken to heal our original Mother—the Earth?" The sun sets at 4:44 p.m. on November 30. Bring drums or rattles and tobacco or rose petals as an offering. Our Respecting the Water of Life Ceremony is open to the public.
Come join us. Everyone is welcome. Respecting the Water of Life Ceremony: Ballona Wetlands Fresh Water Marsh, Playa Vista area, Los Angeles 90293; Friday, November 30; 3:30 p.m arrival; ceremony begins at 4:00 p.m.; free public event; [Directions: from Lincoln & Jefferson Blvd, go West on Jefferson (toward the ocean) to Culver Blvd. Make a U-turn at the light (at that point you will be heading East ). You will see cars and “Red Nation” banner on the right.]
Read more:

US 'Nazi' law to suppress activists

HR 1955, "The Violent Radicalization Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007", apparently intended to assess "homegrown" terrorism threats and causes is on a fast-track through Congress. Proponents claim the bill would centralize information about the formation of domestic terrorists and would not impinge on constitutional rights.
On October 23, the bill passed the House of Representatives by a 404-6 margin with 23 members not voting. If passed in the Senate and signed into law by George W. Bush, the act would establish a ten-member National Commission on the Prevention of Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism, to study and propose legislation to address the threat of possible "radicalization" of people legally residing in the US.
Read more ...

Action alert: Western Shoshone's Sacred Mount Tenabo in danger

Western Shoshone Action Alert - Mt. Tenabo in Jeopardy
December 21st deadline for comments

Mt. Tenabo and the surrounding environs are again under attack from gold mining. It is critical now for the Bureau of Land Management to hear the strength of opposition for this mine; see talking points and how to send your comments and concerns below.
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management has released a draft Environmental Impact Statement, dEIS, which reviews the proposal by Cortez Gold Mines, a subsidiary of Barrrick Gold Mining Co., to conduct new gold mining operations at the south end of Crescent Valley in central Nevada. The Project, although termed as an “expansion” of the existing Pipeline and Cortez mines, is really a new gold mine complex. It would be located on the slopes of Mt. Tenabo, a mountain sacred to the Western Shoshone Indians, who have lived in the area since time immemorial. This mine would:Disturb (devastate) 6,792 acres of land, including a heap leach and waste rock facilities covering much of the Horse Canyon pass just south of Tenabo, and extending east into Grass ... Read more ...

Healing trauma, boarding schools and wounded generations

A Painful Remembrance
by Mary Annette Pember

Nov 28, 2007, 12:53

Dr. Eulynda J. Toledo founded the Boarding School Healing Project to shed light on the long-lasting effects that some religious and Bureau of Indian Affairs schools have had on American Indian communities and families.Many in Indian country have expressed that the trauma from the boarding school experience continues to terrorize the hearts of American Indians. Although much has been written about this history that looms so large in the North American indigenous experience, it remains an obscure topic in mainstream America.

Dr. Eulynda J. Toledo, a member of the Diné tribe and project director of a grant from the National Institute for Disability Research and Rehabilitation, is working to bring attention to the “intergenerational trauma” of the boarding school era through the recently founded Boarding School Healing Project. Toledo and her colleagues maintain that many of the social ills plaguing current generations of American Indians, including sexual abuse, child abuse, violence towards women and substance abuse can be traced to the generations of abuse experienced at Indian boarding schools. Toledo describes intergenerational trauma as post-traumatic stress disorder that has been passed down through generations.
Read more ...

November 28, 2007

Colonial Stress Disorder: Imaging a Way Out

Toronto: Co-presented by Native Women in the Arts and the Women’s Art Resource Centre

(post) Colonial Stress Disorder: Imaging a Way Out
Emerging Aboriginal Artists Video Screenings
Curated by Wanda Nanibush
This program will feature the screening of six short films by six emerging Indigenous voices within media arts today. The screenings will be introduced by curator Wanda Nanibush with an essay on Post Colonial Stress Disorder and will be followed by an audience/curator Q&A.
Wanda Nanibush (Anishinabe-kwe from Beausoleil First Nation) is an independent curator, writer and emerging artist living in Ottawa.
Date: Saturday December 1, 2007Location: Women’s Arts Resource Centre (WARC) Gallery401 Richmond Street West, Suite 122, Toronto
Time: 3-4pm
Admission: Free *Refreshments will be served. Please join us, everyone welcome.
Divided by Zero. Danis Goulet, Canada, 2006, 16:17, video.Portrait in Motion. Nadia Myre, Canada, 2002, 2:21, video.Love & Numbers. Thirza Cuthand, Canada, 2004, 9:00, video.
Swallow. Ariel Lightningchild, Canada, 2002, 11:00, video.
The Weave. Cherie Valentina Stocken, Canada, 2005, 5:36, video.
Prayer for a Good Day. Zoe Leigh Hopkins, Canada, 2003, 12:12, video.
The Knot Between. Cherie Valentina Stocken, Canada, 2006, 5:14, video. Filmmakers:
Danis Goulet’s short films have screened at numerous festivals in Canada and around the world, including the Sundance Film Festival, the Native American Film + Video Festival in New York, and the Message Sticks Film Festival in Sydney, Australia. She sits on the Board of the Images Festival, the Visual/Media Arts Committee of the Toronto Arts Council, and the programming committee of the Worldwide Short Film Festival. Danis is Métis, originally from northern Saskatchewan. Divided by Zero is Danis’s second short drama. Nadia Myre is a multidisciplinary artist whose work has exhibited nationally and internationally. She has been the recipient of the prestigious Eiteljorg fellowship and her work is in the Council Art Bank, Canadian Museum of Civilation, and the Indian Art Centre and many other collections. Myre has made four short videos. Thirza Cuthand was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, in 1978, and grew up a Cree Scots Irish bipolar butch lesbian two spirited boy/girl thingamabob in Saskatoon. She has produced award winning experimental videos and films on low to no budget exploring issues of identity, race, sexuality, relationships, ageism, and mental health. Her work has been shown at the Walter Art Centre, the Mackenzie Art Gallery, Oberhausen International Short Film festival, the San Francisco Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, The Women's Television Network, MIX NY, the Walter Phillips Gallery, the Mendel Art Gallery, the MIX Brasil festival of Sexual Diversity, and many other places. She majored in film and video at Emily Carr Insititute of Art & Design. Ariel Lighteningchild is from the Cree/Ojibway First Nations. She is also Roma and Jewish. She was born a few years ago on Coast Salish land commonly known as Vancouver. Ariel has written, directed and produced four video shorts and one super 8 short film. Her videos have screened at festivals and events around North America and overseas. Cherie Valentina Stocken’s work deals with issues of cultural convergence and the role history plays in defining cultural relationships. Stocken has received her BFA from the University of British Columbia and has exhibited both nationally and internationally. It is Cherie’s goal to continue to inspire social change throughout her art career. Cherie is of Indigenous and European ancestry.Zoe Leigh Hopkins graduated in 1997 from Ryerson with a B.A.A. in Film. Zoe was a Fellow at the Sundance Institute's January 2004 Screenwriter's Lab with her feature script, Cherry Blossoms. Her short film Prayer for a Good Day had its world premiere at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. Zoe is Heiltsuk from Bella Bella and Mohawk from Six Nations. Distributors:Groupe Intervention Video5505, boul. St-Laurent bureau 3015 Montréal (Québec) H2T 1S6 tél (514) 271-5506 fax (514) 271-6980 Swallow Vtape Distribution401 Richmond Street West, Suite 452Toronto, Ontario M5V 3A8416.351.1317416.351.1509Wanda Vanderstoop Titles: Divided by Zero, Prayer for a Good Day, The Knot Between, The Weave, Love & Numbers Nadia Myre 284 2444 Title: Portrait in Motion

Save the Peaks, events Arizona and California

Legal Battle to Protect Sacred Site Comes to Pasadena, CA

The San Francisco Peaks are a unique mountain ecosystem which are managed as public lands in Northern Arizona. The Peaks are held Holy by more than 13 Indigenous Nations. A small ski area is threatening expansion and attempting to make fake snow from treated sewage effluent filled with harmful contaminants. A coalition of tribes and environmental groups have unified to prevent the environmental destruction, community health hazards and extreme desecration that would be caused by the proposed development. Although the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals blocked the ski area plan, the case will be reheard in Pasadena on December 11th, 2007.
Along with the events planned below, the Save the Peaks Coalition is calling for prayers to be made on Dec. 11th to support the protection of all threatened sacred places. If you, your group or organization would like to sign on as a supporter of our efforts, please send us an email indicating your support to We will publish your organization/group/individual name on our website and possibly on our outreach material as well, with your permission of course. The Save the Peaks Coalition is also planning a caravan from Northern Arizona to Pasadena, CA to support the efforts to protect the Holy Peaks. If you would like to go on the caravan please contact us by December 5th. Please call or e-mail J Benally at (928) 527-1431 or to reserve your space or for more information.
Flagstaff, AZ Events
Wednesday, December 5th
Save the Peaks Banner Making Party!
Where: Taala Hooghan Infoshop & Youth Media Arts Center
1926 N. 4th St. #7B, Flagstaff, AZ
When: 5:30pm
Tuesday, December 11th
Save the Peaks Vigil for Justice!
Where: Heritage Square, Downtown Flagstaff, AZ
When: 4:00pm - 5:30pm
LA/Pasadena, CA Events
Sunday, December 2nd
Screenings of the "The Snowbowl Effect", a documentary about the struggle to protect the sacred San Francisco Peaks. Discussion with Save the Peaks Coalition representative and Q&A with the director of the film.
"Save the Peaks Solidarity" at the South Central Farmers' Tianguis
Where: South Central Farmers' Community Center
1702 E. 41st St., Los Angeles 90058
(between Long Beach Ave and Alameda Ave.)
Tel. 1-888-scfarm-1
When: Sunday, December 2nd
w/ screenings and discussion at:
11:30am -- 1pm -- 2:30pm -- 4pm
"Environmental Justice and Protecting Sacred Lands"
Documentary screening and discussion on building a stronger Indigenous Movement and Environmental Justice Alliance.
Where: First Street Studios
2026 E. 1st Street Los Angeles, CA. 90033 (Boyle Heights)
Tel. 323-268-0005
When: Sunday, December 2nd at 6:00pm
Saturday, December 8th
Panel Discussion & Awareness Concert!
"Defending the Land: Indigenous Cultural Survival, Environmental Justice & Protecting Sacred Places"
Panel Discussion from 6:00pm - 8:00pm with representatives from Environmental groups, Grassroots organizations, and Indigenous communities struggling to protect sacred places.
Protect Sacred Sites! Awareness Concert starting at 8:00pm (Bands TBA)
Where: Self Help Graphics & Art
3802 Cesar E. Chavez Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90063
Tel. 323-881-6444
Monday, December 10th
Welcoming ceremony for Save the Peaks caravan from Northern Arizona, dinner and speakers.
When: 6:30pm
Where: The All Saints Church
132 North Euclid Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101
Tuesday, December 11th - Save the Peaks Court Date
The case will be heard at the Pasadena Court of Appeals at 3:00pm. The court is located at 125 South Grand Avenue, Pasadena, CA. Parking is limited in the area so please carpool and use public transportation.
Noon - 1:30pm
March for Sacred Sites & Human Rights!
Meet at All Saints Church for lunch and march to the Appeals Court.
1:40pm - 3:00pm
Prayer Vigil, Ceremony & Rally outside the Courthouse.
Vigil to continue outside for folks who do not wish to enter the courthouse.
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Actual court proceedings. Folks will be able to go inside the courthouse to view the court proceedings and show support.
5:00pm - 5:30pm
Press Conference outside of courthouse.
Please visit for more information.
Protect our Cultural & Natural Heritage.

In memory, Zapatistas massacred at Acteal, Chiapas

Tenth Anniversary Of The Acteal Chiapas Massacre

Play describing the massacre against the Tzotzil community from the pacific organization "Abejas" in the municipality of Acteal in the town of Chenalo Chiapas México

By Centro de Accion Popular
LOS ANGELES -- On December 22, 1997, forty five in Tzotziles were murdered by death squad group “Mascara Roja" trained and sponsored by the state government of Cesar Ruiz Ferro and the president of México at the time Ernesto Zedillo Ponce De León, along with the guidance and coordination of international military training supported by yanquis.
Our demand is to never forget the massacres that our pueblo has been subjected to. Right after the massacre thousands, even millions, marched on the streets to demand accountability for the perpetrators. Unfortunately, ten years later, only a few remember this disgraceful event. That tragic day, the pacific group “Abejas”, was peacefully preparing and setting the prayers for Christmas Eve, while at the same time the government was preparing a plot to assassinate them. Hours of bloodshed went by, the death squads killed children and women equally. The atrocities went so far as to extirpate embryos from pregnant women. They fired shotguns that were paid with dirty American dollars. We will not forget this massacre and we will continue demanding accountability to the assassins of defenseless, unarmed people.
We invite you to join us and remember this atrocious act by seeing our play put together by people that believe that dignity can be gain through resistance. We will also screen the documentary "Masacre De Acteal" and have live music at the end of the night.
Centro de Accion Popular
1042 North Richmond Street
Los Angeles, CA 90033323) 276-8548
(Photo: Acoma Pueblo poet Simon Ortiz remembering those murdered in Acteal, during a vigil walk in Tucson/Photo Brenda Norrell)

NCAI joins NAGPRA Coalition in opposition to Berkeley Museum desecration

DENVER, Colorado, Nov. 28, 2007 – The Native American NAGPRA Coalition (NANC) today strongly endorsed the National Congress of American Indians’ (NCAI) resolution protesting UC Berkeley’s decision to eliminate its tribally approved NAGPRA unit, diminish tribal participation and influence in repatriation processes and declare a huge portion of the Phoebe Hearst Museum’s collection of ancestral remains and funerary objects “to be culturally unaffiliated and thus not subject to tribal repatriation and NAGPRA requirements.”
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Putting a face on the US crime against humanity in Texas

This young girl was imprisoned more than six months in the T. Don Hutto prison near Austin, Texas, where migrant and refugee infants and children are imprisoned. The for-profit prison, like the Raymondville tent internment camp for migrants in Texas, is profiteering from the migrant racism and xenophobia in the United States. Children at Hutto were given spoiled milk, forbidden toys, and mothers were sexually assaulted and chained to their beds during medical examinations. Photo taken during Hutto Raymondville vigil/Photo Jay Johnson-Castro.

November 27, 2007

Free the imprisoned migrant children of Hutto Texas

Migrant and refugee infants and children in prison cells, their mothers sexually assaulted and chained to their beds during medical examinations

Children were given spoiled milk and toys were forbidden. Hutto is the same prison where the U.N. Rapporteur on migrants was denied entry in May. Read the truth of the T. Don Hutto prison near Austin, Texas, and the private prison corporation making a killing from imprisoning migrants:
By Jay Johnson-Castro

Australian Aboriginals celebrate end to racist, fascist regime

By Les Malezer
Australia's racist government is ousted!
I am pleased to inform you of good news in Australia. There has been a change of government with the incoming government pledging to support the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. We are devising a proposal for the most effective way for government to announce the change in position at the national and international level. We hope to have action on 10 December, the International Day for Human Rights. I will update you on developments as soon as concrete plans are made. In the meantime please consider these two matters:
(1) Writing to the Prime Minister of Australia, urging that the government play a leadership role in promoting the rights of Indigenous Peoples at the international level. The address would be:
The Rt Hon Kevin Rudd Prime Minister of Australia; Parliament House; Canberra ACT 2600 Australia [If you send copies of your correspondence to me, via email, we will be able to keep account of the representations, and take follow-up action.] (2) Seeking support from the Australian Ambassadors to UN, by sponsoring and otherwise supporting resolutions on Indigenous Rights. I will keep you informed of developments in the policies of the Australian Government. We have our own plans at the domestic level to raise the levels of understanding and commitment to Indigenous rights. In the meantime we are celebrating the end of 11 years of extreme racist and fascist government. The historical element of this election is that the former Prime Minister, John Howard, is likely to lose his seat in the parliament, thus making him only the second Prime Minister in Australia to lose his seat whilst in office. The first was Stanley Bruce in 1929. Regards, Les Malezer, Chairman FAIRAPO, Box 8402, Woolloongabba Qld 4102 AUSTRALIA

News wires:
Stolen Generation Alliance: Australia's apology must be more than just words:

Amazon Indians versus Big Oil, Greg Palast investigates

War Paint and Lawyers: Rainforest Indians versus Big Oil
Greg Palast investigates for BBC Newsnight - TONIGHT
Chevron: "Nobody has proved that crude causes cancer."
BBC Television Newsnight has been able to get close-in film of a new Cofan Indian ritual deep in the heart of the Amazonian rainforest. Known as "The Filing of the Law Suit," natives of Ecuador's jungle, decked in feathers and war paint and heavily armed with lawyers, are filmed presenting a new complaint in their litigation seeking $12 billion from Chevron Inc., the international oil goliath.
It would all be a poignant joke - except that the indigenous tribe is suddenly the odds-on favorite to defeat the oil company known for naming its largest tanker, "Condoleezza," after former Chevron director, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
For Newsnight, reporter Greg Palast, steps (somewhat inelegantly) into a dug-out log canoe to seek out the Cofan in their rainforest village to investigate their allegations. Palast discovers stinking pits of old oil drilling residue leaking into drinking water - and meets farmers whose limbs are covered in pustules.
Read more ...

Support for Save the Peaks Coalition

Organizational Support for Save the Peaks Coalition's Efforts to Protect Holy Mountain
The Save the Peaks Coalition is appealing for support for our efforts to protect the Holy San Francisco Peaks in Northern Arizona.
As you may already know, Arizona Snowbowl ski area and the US Forest Service have been granted a review of the 9th Circuit Court's previous decision blocking the ski area's proposed expansion and treated sewage effluent snowmaking.
The case will be heard in Pasadena, CA on December 11th at 3:00pm (PST).
The Save the Peaks Coalition will be taking a caravan of supporters to the court proceedings and is organizing a series of events in Pasadena to support the efforts of Tribes and Environmental groups to protect the holy mountain.
We are also organizing events in Flagstaff, AZ and we will be calling for National/International support for prayers to be made for the protection of threatened sacred places.
If you, your group or organization would like to sign on as a supporter of our efforts, please send us an email indicating your support to
We will publish your organization/group/individual name on our website and possibly on our outreach material as well. With your permission of course.
Thank you for your continued support for the protection of our environment, community health and cultural survival.
Please visit for updates.
Klee Benally
Save the Peaks Coalition Volunteer
(928) 380-2629

Unconquering the Last Frontier

Through the eyes of Lower Elwha Klallam elders

Robert Lundahl's film on ecosystem restoration on Washington State's Elwha River
At BC SPACE Gallery,235 Forest Avenue, Laguna Beach, CA 92651949-497-1880
Sunday, December 2, 2007 at 2:00 p.m.
Round table discussion follows until 5:00 p.m.
BC SPACE is pleased and proud to present the screening of the feature-length documentary Unconquering the Last Frontier, the first film to address the topic of dam removal and ecosystem restoration on Washington State's Elwha River. Filmmaker Robert Lundahl made the film over a period of eight years and will be present.
The screening will be held in support of Southern California creeks, rivers and riparian ecosystems, including San Mateo Creek (Trestles), and Aliso Creek, along with habitat preservation efforts located on the land previously occupied by the former El Toro Marine Base in Orange County. Regional environmental leaders and local Native Acjachemen representatives will be on hand for the discussion which follows the film.Unconquering the Last Frontier describes how the Lower Elwha Dam was constructed illegally in 1908; how dam management practices contributed to the river's decline, and how events on the river were paralleled by the systematic political, economic, and cultural suppression of the native people. The story is told through the eyes of Lower Elwha Klallam tribe elders, Beatrice Charles and Adeline Smith, along with tribal members, Rachel Kowalski-Hagaman, Joe Luce, and former Tribal Chairman, Russ Hepfer. Acclaimed Native American actor Gary Farmer narrated the film. Bay Area composer Tony Saunders created its score."Unconquering the Last Frontier tells of the aggressive industrial development of Washington's Olympic Peninsula at the expense of the native people, who had lived along the river since time immemorial," says Lundahl. The triumvirate of hydro power, mills and logging stripped the Olympic Peninsula of its magnificent forests and its legendary salmon. The activities of the corporations left the native people, as well the descendants of the area's European-American settlers, often without jobs and without hope.
In 1976, the tribe, along with 14 environmental groups, intervened in the FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) process to stop the relicensing of one of the river's two dams. The tribe wanted the dams removed and the Elwha River watershed ecosystem restored. Such restoration was mandated by Congress in 1992 and is slowly moving forward. In February 2000, the federal government purchased the dams, the first step toward their physical removal, now anticipated to begin in 2012."The film tells of the Klallam Nation's struggle to recover their culture and traditional livelihoods in the shadow of hydro power development. At the same time, the story can be seen as a cautionary tale, as the companies that once developed and dominated the Pacific Northwest have since moved on to Pennsylvania, to the American South, to Canada, Alaska, Malaysia, Thailand, South America and Russia, and now China and other locations, where they have continued the same practices at the expense of the global environment and indigenous peoples of those regions. The film also calls into question an Americanized notion of "Progress," which assumes that ecosystem resources are expendable in the process of capital and technological expansion and resource extraction. Now in the era of global climate change, we find out they are not."
Admission is free, but seating is limited so reservations are encouraged. For additional information and rsvp, please contact BC Space Gallery, 235 Forest Avenue, Laguna Beach, CA 92651, (949) 497-1880 or c/o
Robert Lundahl's still photography work On The Road To Little America will also be on display in the gallery for the screening.
More information about Unconquering the Last Frontier is available at:

Berkeley police brutality victims' arraignment

From Morning Star Gali

JUSTICE VS POLICE BRUTALITY: Court arraignment was slated for Nov. 28 for three persons arrested, including a member of the Zapatista Ramona Collective Clara Luna. Luna was one of the tree sitters. Another protester we rearrested on Wednesday 15th at a vigil/protest at the Sacred Oak Grove site. Please take a few minutes to call the USB police chief and UCB Director of Community Relations and demand that all charges get dropped due to excessive police brutality against the arrestees and protesters. UC Chief of Police, Vicky Harrison: 510.642.6760
UCB Director of Community Relations, Irene Hegarty: 510.643.5296
Violent Arrests Made At Prayerful Gathering to Support Berkeley Tree-Sit by Oak Grove
Berkeley, CA -- Three people were violently arrested by University of California (UC) police officers at a midnight prayer vigil at the long-standing Oak Grove tree-sit on UC Berkeley's campus. More than 40people, lead by a group of Indigenous peoples, walked in procession to the Tree-sit to show support for Human Rights and Sacred sites and hold a prayerful candlelight vigil at the area, which is a sacred Ohlone burial ground."We heard that UC Berkeley wasn't allowing any food or water to be given to the tree sitters so we went to bear witness and offer our prayers," said Jimbo Simmons of the International Indian Treaty Council. "We were offering prayers and tobacco for the defense of this sacred Ohlone site and held a peaceful vigil for about an hour, then we witnessed one of the tree-sitters being violently attacked by a police officer. More officers arrived wielding batons and were very aggressive, they pushed me and abusively arrested two other people," Simmons stated.
Read more ...

American Indian Holocaust Tribute in Los Angeles

American Indian Holocaust Tribute Draws National Attention
By Red Nation Celebration

LOS ANGELES -- Elizabeth Kucinich, spouse of presidential contender Dennis Kucinich, participated in the first American Indian Holocaust Memorial/Tree of Life Tribute, which was held on the eve of Thanksgiving in Los Angeles State Historic Park. Kucinich, a member of the International Indigenous Sacred Women’s Council, the group who organized the tribute in partnership with Red Nation Celebration; took time from her West Coast campaign to be on hand for the planting of a memorial sycamore tree to acknowledge the millions of American Indians who died during the colonization of the United States. Red Nation Founder Joanelle Romero painted participants’ feet red, “to symbolize the good Red Road, the path we aspire to walk with our children, their children and all peoples.”An excerpt of the ceremony is currently airing on Congressman Kucinich’s national campaign weekly update. (To view, click here; then scroll in halfway to the 3 minute: 30 second mark.)
Sean Woods, Director of State Parks in the Los Angeles area, stated, “It is befitting and appropriate that the symbolic tree was planted in Los Angeles State Historic Park. The purpose of this Park is to preserve the public heritage of the landscape and more importantly to bring some of the tragic elements of our history to light, rather than shy away from them. We benefit by examining the complete history of Los Angeles, because we cannot begin healing until we recognize the mistakes of the past. The Park serves as a point of reflection for the public. The space was most recently slated for one million square feet of industrial development. From the old historic communities surrounding the park (which are predominately poor), the people rose up and secured the Park for open space. It is therefore a peoples’ park, and history continues to unfold here: Ten thousand years of Native history flows into the recent struggle of the community to make themselves a Park and into this American Indian Tribute to Life.”(Click here to view more photos of the American Indian Holocaust Memorial Tribute to Life ceremony.
Photos courtesy of JB Letchinger of
RED NATION CELEBRATION proudly presents the Second Annual American Indian Heritage Month, November, 2007, in the City of Los Angeles, “Honoring American Indians as our Nation’s First Environmentalists.” Red Nation Celebration, Inc. is a non-profit organization established in 1995 to provide the American Indian community with human service programs and to encourage awareness of the cultural treasure indigenous nations offer by premiering American Indian performing arts to communities and mainstream media. Red Nation was recognized in 2006 by the State of California “for their tireless efforts to establish the First Annual American Indian Heritage Month in the City of Los Angeles.” Celebrating 12 years of dedication in community service, Red Nation’s work highlights local native communities in Los Angeles (the largest concentration of urban American Indians in the nation), Orange, and Riverside Counties, and extends throughout the State of California as well as across the nation.# # #RED NATION CELEBRATION 9420 Reseda Blvd. PMB 352 Northridge, CA 91324-2974phone/fax: 818.904.9256
email: mailto:info@rednation.comwww.rednation.com

Celebrating the Uncensored Media

By Brenda Norrell

SAN FRANCISCO -- There's no better city in the world to celebrate beauty, unwind, and sit in a coffee shop near the bay and read all the nasty, vile, name-calling incoming e-mails. Wow, I think I've finally made it. My incoming gmail box is full of contempt with comments from Border Patrol agents and other gatekeepers. There's lots of big words, too, no doubt from professors or people who write e-mails using random dictionary words.
But there's a lot of good comments coming in too. Thanks to all of you who read the articles and send messages of support.
Please scroll down and celebrate the Shellmound walkers, walking and praying for peace at the shell mounds created by their ancestors in what is now called California.
A special thanks once again to those who traveled long distances, including Mohawks, Oneida, Lakota and fighters for justice from Texas and the West Coast, during the Indigenous Peoples' Border Summit of the Americas. Your efforts will be recorded in history.
Finally, thanks to the media who publish these articles, including the U.N. OBSERVER & International Report at the Hague, Narco News covering the Americas, the ever-popular CounterPunch, uncensored Indymedia and the faithful supporter of uncensored news in Indian country, Pechanga Net.
And thanks to all the others who post and forward the links. You know who you are.

November 26, 2007

Sioux Treaty Council: Impeach Steele for uranium connection

By Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council, Oglala Delegation

PINE RIDGE, S.D. -- On November 21, 2007, the Oglala Delegation of the Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council filed an Impeachment Complaint on Oglala Sioux Tribal President John Yellow Bird Steele with the Oglala Sioux Tribe‘s (OST) Secretary, Elizabeth Waters.
The impeachable offenses Steele is being charged with include acts of Dishonesty, Gross Incompetence, and Unethical Conduct. These charges stem from Steele’s actions and inactions in connection with the Native American Energy Group (N.A.E.G.), a New York-based gas/oil/mining company.
Pine Ridge Agency, SD
Chief Oliver Red Cloud
Floyd Hand, Jr.
Vincent Black Feather
The Treaty Council recently won a court case to have N.A.E.G. excluded from the Pine Ridge Reservation for working with Steele for several months to develop a plan to explore for and mine uranium on the reservation. Pine Ridge Reservation has been declared a nuclear-free zone by the B.H.S.N. Treaty Council and the OST Council.
“Steele must be held accountable for his actions. Our evidence will show that Steele was aware of N.A.E.G.’s ultimate goal to mine uranium here and that he allowed them to come here to formulate a plan, with no regards to the irreparable harm that it would bring to our sacred water, land, air and people," stated Floyd Hand, Treaty Delegate.
According to the Tribe’s Constitution, the Impeachment Complaint must be presented to the Tribal Council at the next scheduled Council meeting and supersedes all other issues on the written agenda. Ms. Waters confirmed that the next meeting is set for November 29, 2007 at 10:00 a.m. in the Tribal Council Chambers.

Arizona's 'Cokeheads' the National Guard

Photo: Arizona National Guard with construction crew on Tohono O'odham land building border wall at San Miguel, Arizona/Photo Indigenous Peoples Delegation.

By Brenda Norrell

TUCSON, Ariz. -- There were so many Arizona National Guardsmen eager to run cocaine from the border of Arizona and Mexico to Tucson, that the FBI had to shut down its sting, Operation Lively Green.
While those soldiers were being sentenced in recent months, the Arizona National Guard announced its soldiers would be commanding an armed drone in Iraq by remote control from Tucson.
From Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, a unit controls the MQ-1B Predator, used for armed reconnaissance, surveillance and targeting in Iraq.
While Arizona media reported both stories on the Arizona National Guard -- cocaine running and operating an armed, remote control drone in Iraq -- reporters didn't seem to notice the irony.
Arizona National Guardsmen ran cocaine in uniform in official vehicles to avoid being noticed from the border. The cocaine runners included a recruiting officer working in Tucson public schools.
The Guardsmen were not the only officials running cocaine. During sentencing, nearly 100 others emerged, ranging from a Nogales police officer and a prison guard to US Air Force squadsmen in Tucson patrolling the border by air.
Which brings us to the present, and the fact that Arizona National Guardsmen are helping build the border wall on the Tohono O'odham Nation. While an Indigenous Peoples' delegation was at the border on Tohono O'odham land, near San Miguel, on Nov. 8, 2007, the National Guardsmen were part of the crew building the wall.
This border wall construction has already been responsible for the contractor digging up the graves of the O'odham ancestors. Further, the border wall will be a barrier to the annual traditional ceremony, when O'odham normally walk across their traditional ancestral territory.
Although the politicians call it a "vehicle barrier," it is still a barrier that disects the ancestral territory of the O'odham.
Now, Border Patrol agents, the alien invaders of the O'odham, are telling them they will have to have US passports to walk across their traditional homelands beginning in January. Many O'odham were born at home and do not have passports, or the means to purchase passports.
But you're not likely to read about this in the media, it remains one of the most censored issues.

GREECE: San Francisco Peaks focus for world sacred sites

Holy San Francisco Peaks a Focal Point for International Sacred Site Guidelines
OURANOUPOLIS, Greece --During a 4-day conference in Ouranoupolis, Greece, an international assembly convened to present case studies of Sacred Sites from around the world. Studies of sacred sites under threat included Romania, Korea, Morocco, Russia, Australia, Greece and Arizona’s San Francisco Peaks. The conference was organized by the Delos Initiative on Sacred Protected Natural Sites in Technologically Developed Countries.
“It is impressive that on an international level, the Holy San Francisco Peaks issue will be helping other organizations and individuals learn how to protect their own Natural Sacred Sites”, said Jeneda Benally, a volunteer with the Save the Peaks Coalition who presented the Holy San Francisco Peaks at the conference by contributing a power point presentation and co-authoring a case study with acclaimed Professor Larry Hamilton.
The objective of the meeting was to understand key points concerning the integration of spiritual concerns in the management of natural sites. The case studies will be used for policy makers in newly developing countries.
The San Francisco Peaks are holy to 13 tribes and culturally significant to 22 tribes. The San Francisco Peaks have been the focus of a controversy due to a Forest Service and ski resort plan to expand its development and use reclaimed waste water for snowmaking on the Holy site. Tribes and environmental groups have been victorious in the Ninth Circuit Court to stop the expansion but the Forest Service and ski resort have recently been granted a legal review of the decision. An appeal will be heard on December 11, 2007 in Pasadena, CA.Orthodox Christian Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, praised Benally and the other participants of an IUCN workshop on the protection of sacred lands.
“It is with great interest that we learned of the workshop you are organizing in the framework of IUCN - The World Conservation Union”, he said.
“Its purpose is very close to our interests. The Ecumenical Patriarchate has been teaching a responsible role of human beings towards Creation as its stewards and protectors.”The Delos Initiative was launched in 2004, in the context of the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) of the IUCN (The World Conservation Union) and its Task Force on Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas. This is the second meeting and its theme was “Providing Guidance for Sacred Protected Natural Sites in Developed Countries."
The workshop took place near Mount Athos, a World Heritage Site and one of the most renowned cultural and natural places on Earth, where spiritual and natural values have worked together for many centuries to model a unique landscape with high biodiversity and cultural value.
For more information: THE DELOS INITIATIVE and
Save the Peaks Coalition
Courtesy photo: Jeneda Benally, Navajo, with her daughter, in center.

CENSORED: Depleted uranium disaster

Current Concerns, Doug Westerman Nov 19, 2007

John Hanchette, a journalism professor at St. Bonaventure University, and one of the founding editors of USA Today related the following to DU researcher Leuren Moret. He stated that he had prepared news-breaking stories about the effects of DU on Gulf War soldiers and Iraqi citizens, but that each time he was ready to publish, he received a phone call from the Pentagon asking him not to print the story. He has since been replaced as editor of USA Today.

Depleted Uranium Dust - Public Health Disaster For The People Of Iraq and AfghanistanCurrent Concerns, Doug Westerman Nov 19, 2007
Weblink is:,%202006&on=Article%20published%20on%2010-07-2006

"Make injustice visible" - Mahatma Gandhi"You only live once. Outlive your life."
'The truth will make you free. But first, it will make you uncomfortable" - Mark Twain
"If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor." - Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Thanks to Anna Rondon, Navajo, for sending this.

Prayers for Indian inmates

Main family requests prayers
It was on November 25, 2007, one year ago on Sunday, since Bat-wa-haht, James Main, Jr. was arrested and incarcerated in the Hill County Detention Center in Havre, Montana. The Main family, which has been a herald for Indigenous Peoples' rights, requests special prayers for Jim Jr. and all Indian prisoners.
On January 7, 2008, Jim Jr.'s trial will begin so please continue praying. Thank you! Rose Main
Photo: Jim Jr. Main's mother, Vernie White Cow Main, White Clay (Gros-Ventre), holds a photo of her son, now incarcerated for a murder he said he did not commit. An extensive cover-up of the evidence is now unravelling
White Clay People, Life Interrupted, Three part series

Mohawk Nation News: Ecclesiastical tyranny, colonialism and terrorism

What is “ecclesiastical tyranny”? It is raw colonialism and terrorism, plain and simple!
Mohawk Nation News
On Friday, November 23, 2007, ahearing was held in Montreal . A Mohawk had beenfired the year before by the Sulpician Order becausehe was a Mohawk. Little did they know, he was a veryquiet, reliable and hard working guy. It took theSulpicians more than a year to cook up a case againsthim. While they were busy plotting, he quietly soldrosaries and crucifixes to the multi-national clientelethat come into the shop at Notre Dame Basilica in OldMontreal . This is where they sent him to get him outof the way. Too bad for them, the bad old days are gone. Quebec employees have some laws to protect them. Once the church cobbled together some charges, theyhad to deal with a union.
Read more ...

Sacred Shellmound Walkers

Sacred Shellmound Walkers journeyed 120 miles this year in 6 days from Glen Cove to Emeryville, California:
By Morning Star Gali
Hi Everybody!
Thank you for walking with us and honoring the ancestors of the Ohlone and Me-wuk Peoples, as well as the other ancestors who remain under Mother Earth or, sadly, under UC Berkeley and other institutions or otherwise removed from their sacred resting places. Here are a few pictures I took - (click on the URL above) There are several of our granddaughter (I couldn't help myself), and I know I didn't get everyone - Apologies to Kevin, Tomas, and Manny, among others, - Lee, I didn't see a photo of you either - but your help was greatly appreciated. I spent most of my time drumming, driving, or walking with our granddaughter - so I didn't take as many pictures as I now wish I had. A huge thank you to everyone who walked with us, fed us, housed us, met us along the way, vigiled with us, asked questions, gave answers, smiled at us, honked at us, or prayed for us to have a good journey. Your prayers were felt. Hopefully others, with more pictures, will share them also. I hope you find a picture or two that you enjoy.
Thank you one and all for your support. --The Sacred Shellmound Peace Walkers:

November 25, 2007

Conspiracy of Silence: O'odham say border wall is genocide

Conspiracy of Silence: O'odham say border wall is genocide

By Brenda Norrell
Posted on Sun Nov 25th, 2007 at 01:34:17 PM EST

The grassroots organization O'odham Voice Against the Wall has denounced the ongoing genocide of the O'odham people in the United States and Mexico, where the border wall and development has resulted in the digging up of graves and the final resting places of their ancestors.
A delegation of Mohawks, Oneida, Lakota and Acoma Pueblo recently voiced their sadness and outrage over the border wall under construction on Tohono O'odham lands in Arizona and the "cage" where migrants are imprisoned.
Further, the Mohawk delegation was horrified to watch the US Border Patrol arrest Mayans in front on them, as they tried to intervene, and also to learn of the hundreds of Indigenous Peoples dying on Tohono O'odham land and the nearby desert each year for want of a drink of water.
The delegation also learned that the graves of the O'odham ancestors were recently dug up for the border wall under construction by contractor Boeing. The Tohono O'odham Nation government has declined to release a public statement regarding the ancestors' remains being dug up and removed in 2007 for the border wall.
After the Mohawks' comments were released, a few Tohono O'odham Nation government officials objected and defended the border wall and their policies, which criminalizes aid to migrants.
However, the O'odham Voice Against the Wall said the true way of life of the O'odham, the Him'dag which honors humanity, is at stake, while the government officials work in collusion with Homeland Security.
O'odham Voice Against the Wall statement:
"America is built on the blood of the original peoples of these lands and stolen lands of the original people, now our own people only speak in a foreign mindset. This is your American dream of depriving your own people of PEACE and justice when they are abusing the elders right in your face and degrading your women and children of dignity. Let's set these things right, politicians are not equal or have more authority then the traditional peoples of the land that uphold the true Him'dag. I have yet to see any politicians sit at our table and bring genuine concern and solutions to this outright land takeover buy the federal government. Soon we will be running around with a cut head when we totally lose all rights to our traditional lands, they will bulldoze over your graves to build their headquarters just as they did in Sonoyta, Mexico. Did the O'odham leaders protect those grave sites, no they didn't. Maria cried until last year when she died, she cried about having no grave to visit, her mother's grave that went under the blades. The WALL is not the solution, yes some families are hurting from their drug smuggling businesses but what about our way of life. The government has created this and planned on this don't you get it. It is called Genocide...and it is here in your face."

(Photos: Homeland Security and Border Patrol's migrant "cage" on Tohono O'odham land near San Miguel, Arizona/Photo Ofelia Rivas; Photo 2: Border wall under construction on Tohono O'odham land near San Miguel, Arizona/Photo Indigenous Delegation.

Berkeley Musuem: Police respond with riot gear to NAGPRA pressure

BERKELEY -- "We came out to pray and offer medicine," said Morning Star Gali ofthe Pit River Tribe and part of the Native American NAGPRA Coalition."The cops responded with riot gear and violence. This exhibits the ongoing Human Rights abuses committed by the University (University California Berkeley).
They refuse to comply with NAGPRA by holding 13,000 of our ancestors remains and now they assault us while we pray at our burial grounds."
Could the Native Community Lobby Congress to pass an amendment to NAGPRA that would state that any institution receiving federal funds has to be compliant with NAGPRA or federal funding will be cut until NAGPRA compliance is achieved? Compliance would be determined by a coalition of Tribal Leaders from across Indian Country. The gaming Tribes could also refuse to fund state and local governments until NAGPRA compliance is achieved. We have a responsibility to our relatives to bring them home.
Ezra McCampbell

November 23, 2007

Border Wall Genocide: O'odham graves go under the blades

O'odham Voice Against the Wall responds to reader comments posted on article, Mohawks Inflamed Over Tohono O'odham Tribal Council Complicity In 'Border' Oppression Of Indigenous People - U.S. welcomes rich and kills the poor, at Atlantic Free Press:

O'odham VOICE Against the WALL

America is built on the blood of the original peoples of these lands and stolen lands of the original people, now our own people only speak in a foreign mindset. This is your American dream of depriving your own people of PEACE and justice when they are abusing the elders right in your face and degrading your women and children of dignity. Let's set these things right, politicians are not equal or have more authority then the traditional peoples of the land that uphold the true Him'dag. I have yet to see any politicians sit at our table and bring genuine concern and solutions to this outright land takeover buy the federal government. Soon we will be running around with a cut head when the we totally loose all rights to our traditional lands, they will bulldoze over your graves to build their headquarters just as they did in Sonoyta, Mexico. Did the O'odham leaders protect those grave sites, no they didn't. Maria cried until last year when she died, she cried about having no grave to visit, her mother's grave that when under the blades. The WALL is not the solution, yes some families are hurting from their drug smuggling businesses but what about our way of life. The government has created this and planned on this don't you get it. It's called Genocide...and it's here in your face.
(Photo: Border wall under construction on Tohono O'odham land in November 2007)
Original article with comments:

Alcatraz Sunrise, honoring the warriors

By Brenda Norrell
Human Rights Editor
U.N. OBSERVER & International Report

SAN FRANCISCO -- With the prayers, blessings and dances of the Shingle Springs Rancheria Miwok, Pomo, Pitt River and Calpullies, the Alcatraz Sunrise Gathering began, after 3,500 people crossed on boats to Alcatraz Island before first light.
With the scent of sage filling the dawn air, the Ohlone People were honored for their long struggle to recover their traditional homelands here and the Pitt River people for their ongoing efforts to protect the sacred water and land in what is now called northern California.
With a roaring fire in the center, the prayers began at first light. Anna Marie Sayers of the Ohlone people was among the Native women honored.
Radley Davis, Pitt River Nation, asked those gathered to greet the rising sun. "Wherever you are at, turn around and greet the sun. It is still coming, when you see it, say 'hello.'
"Remember each of you is spirit," Davis said. "Our Creator is a caring Creator, we are all special."
Davis urged everyone gathered to discover who they are and the reason that they have been brought into life, remembering that life is sacred and all is spirit.
"When you see the sun, wash your body, your spirit, wash your life." Davis said, "Ask the Great Maker to help you find out about your life."
The Shellmound walkers, who have been offering prayers at the Shellmounds, asked that others join them in prayer for the ancestors and all Indigenous Peoples. While pointing out the recent oil spill here, they asked to remember the winged-ones, four legged and fishes hurt by the spill. They asked for the cleansing of the San Francisco Bay, while celebrating the survival of Native people.
Bill Means, cofounder of the International Indian Treaty Council, said the gathering on Thursday, Nov. 22, is a continuum in the legacy of the people.
"We consider it relighting the fire of Indian survival, Indian resistance here in this hemisphere. To remind people that first of all, John Wayne didn't kill us all. That we're still alive, distinct cultures that are thriving here in America."
Means said the people came today to remember the Hopi imprisoned here at Alcatraz who refused to cut their hair, send their children to US government boarding school or become colonized as US citizens. Nineteen Hopi men from Oraibi returned home to their village in September, 1895, after spending nearly a year imprisoned on Alcatraz Island.
"They brought them here to break their resistance," Means said.
"The only good Indian was a dead Indian."
Means pointed out that the first so-called Thanksgiving was a celebration of the murder of the Mashantucket Pequots who greeted the Europeans who came to this land. Now, however, the people can look for inspiration to Indian people like Richard Oakes, among the leaders of the occupation of Alcatraz.
Oakes, Mohawk, brought this message: "Enough is enough!" Means said there is also inspiration in the new leaders of governments in South America, including Bolivia's Evo Morales and Venezuela's Hugo Chavez.
Means, master of ceremonies at the Indigenous Peoples' Border Summit of the Americas in San Xavier District of the Tohono O'odham Nation in November, also remembered the Indigenous Peoples walking and dying at the border of the United States and Mexico.
"All they want is a drink of water," he said of those walking and dying of dehydration.
Means also remembered Floyd Red Crow Westerman, hospitalized with serious health problems. Means asked that Westerman be remembered in prayers. He said if it is time for Westerman to make the journey, pray for that. But if the Creator wants to leave him here a little longer, Means said that would be good for the people and the struggles that Westerman has spent his life fighting for.
Darrell Standing Elk joined others to lead the AIM Song for Westerman.
Janice Gardipe, Paiute-Shoshone, said there is a great struggle underway to protect Indian homelands from the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump in Western Shoshone territory.
"Where are our warriors," Gardipe asked, urging American Indians to come and support the struggle to protect the sacred lands.
Munyiga Lumumba, organizer for the All American Peoples' Revolutionary Party, urged those gathered to reject whatever the capitalist US government and media is telling them. Lumumba urged the crowd to take down the imperialism, including Israel's action to destroy Palestine. On the issue of Iran and nuclear weapons, he said America has no right, and certainly no moral ground to stand on, to tell the governments of the world what to do.
"The enemy doesn't lie some of the time, the enemy lies all of the time."
Joining organizer Jimbo Simmons of the International Indian Treaty Council, Tony Gonzales said it was reassuring to know that future generations of Indian people will be assured because of the actions here in the occupation of Alcatraz Island, which began in 1969.
Bringing to a conclusion the ceremony, on the day when others in America celebrate the Thanksgiving of colonizers, Arigon Starr, Kickapoo from Oklahoma, sang the lyrics, "This is Indian land forever," followed by, "We will take the Rock."
Photo: Native women Cecilia Silvas and Morning Star Gali, lead the procession after the ceremony. Photo Brenda Norrell

November 22, 2007

Alcatraz Sunrise Gathering today

Before first light, 3,500 people gathered on Alcatraz Island today to remember the warriors who occupied Alcatraz Island, including Richard Oakes, and the Hopis once imprisoned here for refusing to be colonized. During the sunrise blessings, songs and dances, Native women were honored, who called for a new generation of American Indian warriors. The International Indian Treaty Council hosted the gathering.
Photos: Gathering on Alcatraz 2007; American Indian Movement staffs and Pit River Nation on Alcatraz/Photos Brenda Norrell
Please see new article at the Censored Blog:
Alcatraz Sunrise, Honoring the Warriors
SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) -- Listen online to interview with Bill Means:
"We consider it relighting the fire of Indian survival, Indian resistance here in this hemisphere. To remind people that first of all, John Wayne didn't kill us all. That we're still alive, distinct cultures that are thriving here in America,” explained Bill Means, a Lakota and one of the founders of the International Indian Treaty Council. Means said it was only fitting that the protests took place in San Francisco in the 60s and 70s. "The civil rights movement as you know was going strong, the anti-war movement, so it was a time when the status quo was unacceptable for most Americans,” he said. “This being a hotbed of organization, a hotbed of liberation here in the Bay Area, Berkeley, etcetera, it was only right that Indian people also get together to take our rightful place in the struggle for civil and human rights." Means credits the Alcatraz protest with sparking a worldwide movement that is still very much alive today. "It started out here as a small spark, a small fire of resistance and survival. It's now become a worldwide movement of indigenous people culminated by the recent declaration that was recently passed at the United Nations."
Listen to KCBS interview with Bill Means:

November 21, 2007

'Save the Peaks' caravan and vigil in Pasadena

Contact: Klee Benally, Save the Peaks Coalition, 928-380-2629

Tribes and Environmental Groups Join in Legal Defense of Sacred Mountains
Save the Peaks Coalition Caravan and Vigil in Pasadena, California

Flagstaff, AZ - December 11th, 2007 the legal battle to determine the fate of a Northern Arizona mountain held holy by more than thirteen Native American Nations, will come to a Pasadena, California courtroom. On October 17th, 2007 the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals granted the U.S. Forest Service and an Arizona ski resort the opportunity to challenge a previous decision by the court, which had blocked the ski area from making fake snow from treated sewage effluent on the sacred San Francisco Peaks, and expanding some areas.

The Save the Peaks Coalition (STPC), a volunteer group, formed in 2004 to protect the Sacred Mountain, will join with youth and elders from Navajo, Hopi, Apache, Havasupai and other nations to caravan from Arizona to attend the court proceedings in Pasadena, CA.

“We call upon all those who value respect, community health, cultural diversity and human rights to stand with us.” Said Francis Tso a volunteer with STPC. “Our way of life is in danger. The mountain eco-systems are in danger. The economic interests of one private business operating on public lands are pitted against environmental integrity, public health and cultural survival for Indigenous Peoples.”
The Save the Peaks Coalition and tribal representatives will be holding a prayer vigil and rally at the Pasadena courthouse during the proceedings. All are invited to attend.
Other events are also being organized internationally and nationally to support the tribes and environmental groups efforts to protect the sacred Peaks.
The Arizona Snowbowl Ski Resort, located on the sacred Peaks, is attempting to expand its development, clear-cut acres of old growth trees, and make fake snow from wastewater, which has been proven to have contaminants. A coalition of tribes and environmental groups have filed lawsuits against the U.S. Forest Service, which leases the public land to the Snowbowl, to stop this proposed development.
Lawyers in the case will present oral arguments on December 11, 2007 at 3:00 p.m. at the US Court of Appeals located at 125 South Grand Avenue in Pasadena, California.
"The decision of the Ninth Circuit to rehear this case is regrettable. It means that the Court will reconsider the case - not that it has reversed any decision at this point. It is, however, even more regrettable that our federal government seems to place the profitability of a privately owned, non-destination ski area, that operates on federal land, over the deeply held religious and cultural convictions of hundreds of thousands of Native Americans living in the southwestern United States." said Howard Shanker, of the Shanker Law Firm, PLC, representing the Navajo Nation, the White Mountain Apache Tribe, the Yavapai-Apache Tribe, the Havasupai Tribe, Rex Tilousi, Dianna Uqualla, The Sierra Club, The Center for Biological Diversity, and the Flagstaff Activist Network. Shanker, who is running for Congress in Arizona’s Congressional District 1, further provided that, "this situation is indicative of the fact that we need better laws and lawmakers who
are willing to stand up and be counted in the face of this type of injustice. The continued pursuit of the use of reclaimed waste water to make snow on the San Francisco Peaks should be an affront to all people of conscience everywhere."
On March 12, 2007 the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a lower court decision and ruled in favor of the tribes and environmental groups. The court determined that the proposed ski area development would violate the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
In the 9th Circuit ruling, Judge William A. Fletcher stated, “We are unwilling to hold that authorizing the use of artificial snow at an already functioning commercial ski area in order to expand and improve its facilities, as well as to extend its ski season in dry years, is a governmental interest of the highest order.” The court also stated, "If Appellants do not have a valid RFRA claim in this case, we are unable to see how any Native American plaintiff can ever have a successful RFRA claim based on beliefs and practices tied to land that they hold sacred."
The 9th Circuit decision had been hailed as a victory for Religious Freedom, Environmental Justice & Cultural Survival.
21 Arizona tribes had passed a resolution calling on the Bush Administration not to appeal the 9th Circuit ruling and to repair damage done to tribal relations due to controversy created by the proposed ski area development.
"Why in 2007, do we as America's first people have no guarantee for protection of our religious freedom?" said Jeneda Benally a volunteer with the Save the Peaks Coalition. "The case to protect the Holy San Francisco Peaks demonstrates the need for further protection of Native American religious freedom and rights in this country. We will continue our dedication to save the Peaks until we have our human rights fully upheld."
“If you desecrate this sacred mountain it is like destroying the Mormon chapel or other churches through out the world, even Mecca a holy place, what will be next what if it's your place of worship?” Said Avery Denny, a member of the Dine’ (Navajo) Hataali Association which is involved in the lawsuit to protect the holy Mountain.
The Save the Peaks Coalition is also calling for a national day of prayer for the Peaks.
“We recognize that there are many people who cannot join us in our efforts so we urge them to pray where they are.” Said Jeneda Benally. “We all must take action in order to protect sacred sites and defend human rights for our future generations.” Said Benally.
The Save the Peaks Coalition will also be holding a Flagstaff vigil to support the protection of the Sacred Mountain on Tuesday, December 11th at 4:00 p.m. at Heritage Square in downtown Flagstaff, AZ.
The caravan will depart for Pasadena, CA from Flagstaff, AZ on Monday, December 10th at 8:30 a.m. If you are interested in joining the caravan or organizing an event please email us at or call (928) 527-1431.
For information, updates on events or to donate for travel expenses please visit:

Saami action for human rights

Saarivuoma Saami Village:

Norway is violating International Law in their conduct against the Saami People in Sweden – Nobody is taking any action!

Demonstration/protest in Stockholm November 23, 2007 against the judicial assaults on the Saami People. Norwegian arrogance and superiority, and swedish passiveness work together when Norway runs over the swedish Saamis on their traditional summer reindeer- grazing areas. The norwegian state has during the last years, been allowed to terrorize the swedish Sami People in a multitude of different ways, when they have been on their reindeers summer-grazing areas in Norway.The swedish authorities has not lifted a finger, when the norwegian state has torn down reindeer-nouns, unlawfully driven away large herds of reindeers and continually expressed repeated threats of heavy fines for Saami villages situated on the swedish side of the nationstate border. Now the Saami villages react against the passiveness of the swedish government in this matter, knowing how quick both Norway and Sweden usually reacts, when other countries violates human rights and international laws.This is the reason why Saarivuoma Saami village, along with other Saami villages and Saami organisations, now has been forced to take this drastic measure, to make the world listen. - This is totally unreal. We cannot live with a state that terrorizes and hunt us, inspite of that we are on our own lands that we have lived on and cultivated in thousands of years – long before there was a norwegian state, says the Chairman of Saarivuoma Saami village mr Per-Anders Nutti. - We have to draw attention to this matter. We cannot fight against a hostile state, on our own. This is why we are going to Stockholm now, to show our intentions and hand over protestletters to both the swedish Foreign Ministry and the Norwegian Embassy. The today, still valid Border treaty between Norway and Sweden, the so called Lappkodicills of 1751, confirms the strong rights that swedish reindeerhusbandry hold in Norway.The Lappcodicills, were earlier regulated with the Reindeergrazing convention, between the countries.The latest convention went out of effect in 2005 and there has not yet been any agreement made, on a new convention. Norway has since then, singlehandedly decided to regulate the Saami Peoples customary rights lands, with their own so called convention law. This law is created in violation of human rights and international law, beacuse it does not follow the Lappkodicills which presupposes and agreement between the two states. The Swedish Government has admittedly declared that the new norwegian law is in violation of the Lappkodicills, and therefore violates international law. But Sweden still has not taken any action in this matter, which is very strange, since both Sweden and Norway are staunch defenders of human rights and international law, when other contries violates them, and often react very fast on such violations. - Sweden usually reacts very fast to defend human rights and international law, on the international arena. It is now time, to defend your own Indigenous Peoples at home, aswell, says Mr Nutti. For more information contact: Per Anders Nutti, Chairman of Saarivuoma Saamivillage. Cellphone: 0046 – (0)70-213 58 41 Henrik Johannes Blind, Saarivuoma saamivillage and acting traditional Saami security officer according to the Lappkodicill regulations. Cellphone: 0046- (0)73-089 86 83 Olov J Sikku, responsible for presscontactsolov.sikku@same.net0046-(0)70-171 80 34 FACTS: THE LAPPKODOCILLS OF 1751 The Lappkodicills of 1751 is the still today valid Border Treaty between Norway and Sweden. This treaty confirms the strong rights that the swedish reindeer husbandry has in Norway.The Lappkodicills has the status of law, both in Sweden and Norway, and is in its current form not possible to dismiss.The Lappkodicills has in more detailed form been regulated by the Reindeer grazing convention, that was negotiated between the two states.Since 2005 there are no Reindeer grazing convention in effect, which means that the Lappkodicills regulations alone are in effect. 1972 YEARS REINDEERGRAZING CONVENTION 1972 years Reindeergrazing Convention resulted in that the swedish Saamis were pushed away and restrained from use of 70% of their customary rights lands in Norway, during a timeperiod of 33 years. Saarivuoma Saami village were shut out from the Altevann area. This has resulted in the loss of millions of swedish crowns, that the Saami people has had to pay in fines and additional surveillance costs, beacuse of these unnatural borders that have been imposed on them. The Reindeergrazing Convention of 1972 was established against the will of the Saami National Association and a number of Saami Villages clearly expressed rejection.No compensation has been payed out to the swedish Reindeerhusbandry for their loss of these lands. NORWEGIAN CONVENTION LAW – is in violation of international law and human rights Norway decided on their own, their new so called “Convention law” of 2005 to regulate the lands included in the Lappkodicills. The former Minister of foreign affairs, Mrs Laila Freiwalds, in May 2005, that the attitude of the swedish government towards Norways newly founded convention law, was that it violates the Lappkodicills and therefore violates international law and human rights. Also the current Swedish Government agrees to this same attitude, but has up to this date remained passive. None of the highest Saami political entities has acted, either. THE ALTEVANN CASE of 1968 Saarivuoma and Talma Saami villages were awarded an on private rights founded ,reindeerhusbandry right in the Altevann area in the region ( fylke) of Troms in Norway, in a fixed ruling of Norways Highest Court, in 1968 – the so called Altevann case ( April 20 1968 L. Nr 42 nr 8/1966 )The case concerned the regulation of water in the Lake of Altevann.

Alcatraz Island Sunrise Gathering Thursday

Please double click to enlarge to read about special guests.
Indigenous People's Sunrise Gathering and Community Feast at Intertribal Friendship House
The Indigenous People's Thanksgiving Sunrise Ceremony commemorates the 1969-1971 occupation of Alcatraz Island by the "Indians of All Tribes."
This event is one day, Thursday, November 22, 2007.
Ticket sales and boarding begins at 4:00 am. The first departure from Alcatraz Landing is at 4:15 am with 5 additional departures leaving Alcatraz Landing approximately every 15 minutes. The last departure from Alcatraz Landing will be at 5:30 am.
Boats begin returning from Alcatraz Island at the conclusion of the Sunrise Gathering Ceremony. Participants are welcome to stay on Alcatraz to take the award-winning cellhouse tour beginning at 9:00 am. The cell-house tour is not offered before 9:00 am.
Tickets can be purchased:
or by calling 415 981-7625 or at the Pier 33 Ticket Booth.
The ticket booth opens at 4:00 am on Thursday, November 22, 2007. Tickets are $12.00 per person. Children 5 and under are free.
Free community dinner to be held afterwards at Intertribal Friendship House
Dinner is from 1:00- 4:00 PM. Bring a side dish to share!523 International Blvd. Oakland, CA 94606
Volunteers to set up/clean up cook and serve are still needed.1:00 - 4:00 p.m.
If you would like to volunteer come before 12:00 noon to help serve and we need help to clean up!
If you would like to contribute please contact Morning Star Gali at:

Sheriff Arpaio says its an honor to be compared to KKK

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio says it's an HONOR to be compared to KKK

Check out this video on YouTube:
Contact the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors to demand accountability.
Fulton Brock (R) District 1
Don Stapley (R) District 2
Andrew W. Kunasek (R) District 3
Max W. Wilson (R) District 4
MaryRose Wilcox (D) District 5
!Take Action!
Black Friday Boycott Racism Protest
Friday November 23rd1:00 PM to 4:00 PM35th Street and Thomas
In front of Pruitts Furniture Background: