Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

September 30, 2009

Secakuku: Hopi are stewards of the land, despite the coup

by Alph H. Secakuku,
Sipaulovi Council Representative, Village of Sipaulovi, Second Mesa, AZ, Hopiland

Comments by Alph H. Secakuku, Sipaulovi Council Representative, Village of Sipaulovi, Second Mesa, AZ, Hopiland

It is a sad day for Hopi/Tewa people, and I am disappointed in the illegal Hopi council’s action telling the “Environmental Groups to Stay off Their Land”. The Hopi/Tewa people have always considered themselves to be the best environmentalists in the world. Our Hopi Religion teaches that we made a sacred covenant with Maasaw, our Supreme Being, to be good stewards of the Fourth World we live in today.
We, as people, all have the responsibility of being Caretakers of Mother Earth. “You care for it and take from it only what you need, and it will provide for you”.
I never thought I would see the day when being “Hopi” meant being anti-environment, pro-big corporate energy, and actually promoting pollution and global warming in favor of dollars/money.
This is the new world image of Hopi, thanks to Scott Canty, Nada Talayumptewa, Phillip Quotshytewa, Mary Felter, Ivan Sidney, Sr., and the rest of the illegally constituted Hopi Tribal Council…in essence, a coup.
We, the Hopi/Tewa people, have worked closely for many years with our allies from the environmental community to protect sacred lands from development and to stop uranium mining from poisoning our water. Water is life, therefore, it is sacred.
We will continue to work together—tribal communities and other clean energy jobs advocates—to bring green economic development to our lands that respects our air and water.
Together with our partners in the environmental community, we are working to secure long term solution to energy, health and water issues in northern Arizona by cleaning up dirty coal plants and promoting solar and wind projects on the reservations. The time to transition from dirty old coal plants to clean energy from the wind and the sun is now.
We see a positive future ahead with results like the Navajo Nation’s recent unanimous green jobs resolution and will continue to support clean energy projects with Navajo and Hopi communities. We all know that climate change is predicted to bring hotter and drier conditions to the Colorado Plateau, an area which may see even greater temperature increases than the rest of the country. This threatens our water supplies and livelihoods.
Working together to stop global warming pollution from coal-fired power plants is vital to future generations. Now is the time to look forward and plan to transition existing coal plants to cleaner power.
What is H.O.P.I.? Hopi Organizational Political Initiative (H.O.P.I.) is a united, strong, clear, organized and non-partisan voice made up of members of the Hopi/Tewa community both on and off the reservation. It is there to serve as conduit for the Hopi/Tewa people to effectively raise concerns and resolve issues that affect the Hopi/Tewa people. It promotes issues and emerging concerns primarily within the Hopi tribal government, but also with the local state and federal governments. As such, we support all political candidates who seek public office who will address the concerns of the communities. H.O.P.I.’s mission is to insure that we impact policy regarding the issue of concern and quality of life to our community and future generations. It is a “grassroots” organization composed of concerned Hopi/Tewa people.
Why do we regard the “interim Hopi government” as an illegal council? The Resolution H-007-09, enacted on December 28, 2008, established an illegal interim Hopi Tribal Government. It is an illegal council because it is not Hopi Constitutionally authorized. In effect, the illegal council enactment amended the Hopi Constitution without holding a referendum vote of the Hopi/Tewa people. Only the majority vote of the qualified voters of the Hopi Tribe can amend the Constitution of the Hopi Tribe. They must cast their ballots in accordance with Section 16 of the Indian Reorganization Act of June13, 1934, as amended. The Superintendent, Hopi Agency, BIA, has the responsibility to call the election, and must serve as a Chairman of the Election Board. After the approval of the amendments, all officers and employees of the Interior Department are ordered to abide by the provisions of the said Constitution and By-laws. The Hopi Tribal Council, even when they are legally constituted, has no authority to amend the tribal constitution. The constitution cannot be amended by a tribal resolution or an ordinance.
Therefore, based on the foregoing, all of the enactments of the illegal council are of no force and effect. As of January 1, 2009, there was no legitimate tribal council in existence. At the close-of-business on December 31, 2008, the council became defunct and could no longer operate or conduct legitimate tribal council meetings or tribal business. In reality, the council and the council appointed officers of Tribal Secretary, Sergeant-At-Arms, and Tribal Treasurer became nonfunctional.
Chairman Benjamin H. Nuvamsa and Vice-Chairman Todd Honyaoma, Sr., both resigned on December 31, 2008. Hopi Tribal Constitution, ARTICLE IV, Section 1—mandates the “Hopi Tribal Council shall consist of a Chairman, Vice-Chairman, and Representatives from various villages.” Without a chairman and vice-chairman, there can be no constitutionally authorized council to conduct meetings.
The Hopi Bylaws, Article 1—states “The Chairman shall preside over all meetings of the Tribal Council…” Clearly the delegated authorities do not include designating a member of the council to be the “Presiding Officer”. In fact, it expressly forbids it. This was a form of check and balance to prevent council from taking complete control of the government as is happening now. However, the illegal council selected Phillip Quotshytewa, Sr., as a “pro tem” presiding officer to chair the illegal meetings. He is only a council representative, like me, and not an elected tribal chairman.
Furthermore, it does not take a legal expert to interpret what Article IV, Section 1 means. It simply means that no legislative sessions can be conducted in the absence of the Chairman and Vice-Chairman under the current Hopi Constitution and By-laws. The council cannot legally conduct business, appoint people to run the so-called “interim government,” expend tribal and federal funds, or accept federal grants and contracts.
ARTICLE V, Section 2—mandates that filling vacancies in the office of the Chairman and Vice-Chairman that may occur for any reason “shall be filled for the rest of the term in the same manner as those officers are ordinarily chosen.” This mandate does not allow for any discretion on the part of the council. Council has no authority to decide that it simply is not convenient to hold an election to fill the vacancies. Yet, this is precisely what they have done.
Had the illegal “interim council” not interfered in the activities of the Election Board by refusing to allow them to conduct a special election, the objective of this Article would have been fulfilled and the current vacancies of our top officials would have been filled and the people would have had new duly elected leadership in office by the first week of April 2009. This would have met the Constitutional requirement and we would already have a legitimate fully functional government. The illegal council violated the provisions of the Election Ordinance #34 by refusing to allow the Election Board to hold an election, thereby, purposely destroying the independence of the Hopi Election Board.
We have appealed to the Superintendent, Hopi Agency, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) numerous times to intervene on behalf of the grassroots people. Mr. Wendell Honanie declined to do so by citing a BIA policy not to intervene in internal tribal affairs. We believe the Bureau officials are hiding behind the veil of “sovereignty” and “self-determination.” Yet the BIA is deeply involved in the current controversy by ignoring the illegal actions of the council and has taken a position on the side of council who are orchestrating the illegal activities.
By siding with the conspirators who have illegally taken the reigns of Hopi government, the BIA has become complicit in the overthrow of our government. By recognizing the “interim government” and the illegally appointed heads of state, the BIA, in essence, intervened in an internal tribal dispute and has, therefore, become part of the problem instead of part of the solution. This defies the federal government’s trust responsibility to the Tribe.
The rhetoric of the Resolution H-007-09 was carefully crafted to create the illusion of a legitimate justification for illegal acts. The resolution also identified Tribal Secretary, an appointed position held by Mary A. Felter, and Tribal Treasurer, an appointed position held by Russell Mockta, to jointly hold the authorities of the Chief Executive Officer of the Tribe. The illegal council used the resolution as a deliberate and illegal way of reviving outdated practices which has been formally amended or eliminated. The official organization chart of the Hopi Tribe identifies the Chairman as the Chief Executive Officer.
Not only has our government been taken away from the Hopi/Tewa people, but our court system has been corrupted. Paving the way for the overthrow of our government and occupation of the Tribal Council by those who do not respect our Constitution and laws, our own Hopi Appellate Court was systematically dismembered by the same conspirators responsible for the current broken condition of our tribal government.
These are extreme circumstances that only can be mended and fixed by the Hopi/Tewa people themselves. Let us hope and pray that the upcoming election will have positive results.

Earthcycles Live: 7th Indigenous Uranium Forum

Join us LIVE: 7th Indigenous Uranium Forum
Govinda, producer at Earthcycles,, and Brenda Norrell, publisher of Censored News, team up once again to bring you live on the web, the 7th Indigenous Uranium Forum. Winona LaDuke will join Indigenous fighting uranium mining and nuclear dumping on their lands at the gathering at Acoma Pueblo's Sky City.
Indigie Femme performs on Oct. 22, Thursday, and "The Return of Navajo Boy," will be screened on Oct. 23, Friday.
For workshop and speakers see:
If you would like to be an Earthcycles' sponsor, and help provide for travel expenses for Earthcycles, please contact Govinda at or visit his PayPal at:
Earthcycles and Censored News provided five-month live coverage of the Longest Walk northern route, Indigenous Border Summits of the Americas, Havasupai Gathering to Halt Uranium Mining in the Grand Canyon, AIM-West Reunion and more. Listen at
Radio stations around the world are urged to rebroadcast, or simultaneously broadcast, at no charge.
Indigenous Uranium Forum speakers include Lenny Foster, Dine; Honorable Chandler Sanchez, Governor, Acoma Pueblo; Honorable Ron Charlie, 2nd Lieutenant Governor, Acoma Pueblo; 30 Years of Resistance by John Redhouse and Manny Pino; 'Honoring Diana Ortiz' Woman of Acoma: Great Role Model; Charmaine White Face, Defenders of the Black Hills; Margene Bullcreek, Shoshone Paiute; Solidarity Statement: Katsumi Furitsu, Japan; Black Mesa Water Coalition; Navajos Phil Harrison and Gilbert Bedonie; Chris Peters: International Connections; Nuclear Regulatory Commission-GEIS Panelist Eric Jantz; Shonto Preparatory School 'Uranium Research,' Norman Brown; John Fogarty; Louise Bennally, Food Sovereignty; James Zion, Esq.; Taylor McKinnon, Center for Biological Diversity; Laura Watchempino, Acoma Multi-Cultural Alliance for a Safe Environment; Nadine Padilla; Larry King; Petuuche Gilbert; Teddy Nez; Carletta Garcia; Al Waconda; Elsie Peshlakai; Robert Tohe; Winona LaDuke, Anishanabe, White Earth Homelands and more ...

Reporter's Notebook: In the beginning

Reporter's Notebook
Brenda Norrell, Censored News,
In the beginning, there was Michoacan. We arrived by buses from the border, with the Yaqui and Mayo from Sonora and Sinoloa. There was a heavy fog in the mountains of Michoacan, as the National Indigenous Congress gathered. A man in his twenties from Guerrero with one leg came aboard our bus. He was very thin and said there was little to eat in his home state of Guerrero, where logging companies and oppression were intense. He hopped everywhere he went. He served on security on the Zapatistas caravan across Mexico. He was one of the bravest men I've ever known. The Zapatistas caravan across Mexico was one of the best things I've ever know.
Photo two: Riley, Choctaw AIM member from Oklahoma, and Demetria Martinez, award winning author of 'Mother Tongue,' among those protesting NAFTA in Tucson in the beginning. In her book Mother Tongue, Martinez, once arrested as she documented the Sanctuary Movement at the border, tells of the real struggle of Indigenous fleeing torture in Central America.
Photo three: In memory of Willie Lonewolf, on the Longest Walk 2008, at the Ute Indian Museum in southern Colorado. Keep singing.
Photos by Brenda Norrell

Super heroes: Natives protecting the land

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
Congratulations today goes out to all the Native Americans and their colleagues protecting the land from coal mines, power plants and other destructive forces.
The sudden increase in attacks in the media, phone taps and fear tactics, shows the efforts for good are producing results. The corporations, and their puppets within tribal councils, have increased their attacks.
Today's attacks bring back the memory of an interview with Hopi Dan Evehema at the age of 104 at his home on Hopiland. Dan Evehema was protesting destruction to the land by a backhoe in the rain, when he paused on his couch. He told me of the traditional Hopi Sinom. He said they never authorized or recognized the Hopi Tribal Council. The traditional Hopi stood firm against coal mining and power plants. The traditional Hopi elders stood in solidarity with Navajos at Big Mountain and throughout Black Mesa.
Now, from the northern border to the southern border, American Indians struggling to protect their lands and true sovereignty are under attack, losing their jobs and everything they have in their struggles.
Today, the media has been coopted. Most news reporters know when they are giving voice to lies. They do it to keep getting a paycheck.
However, those who promote the destruction of the land, air and water, with the knowledge that they are promoting lies, are responsible. Those who promote the lies of politicians to continue the death and destruction in Iraq and Afghanistan are also responsible.
These news reporters, publishers and producers are responsible for the diseases and deaths when they act against the dictates of their own true self, in violation of their own knowledge of truth.
Censored News celebrates all of you who are struggling for justice and dignity, against the oppression of colonizers and colonized thought.
We celebrate all of you out there, fighting the good fight. You know who you are.

--Brenda Norrell

Chiapas: Indigenous achieve mining closure

Indigenous Peoples achieve closure of mining operations in Chiapas
Chiapas, Mexico
September 28, 2009
The Canadian mining company Linear Gold Corp. bowed to pressure from the Indigenous Peoples who opposed the exploitation of gold and silver deposits and announced the closure of its offices in the state on September 30th. Along with the company Blackfire Exploration Corporation, Linear Gold Corp., is holding most of the concessions granted by the federal government to foreign mining in the state of Chiapas.Source: Apro and

September 29, 2009

World Kickoff Event: Gandhi at the Ferry

Friday October 2nd, 2009 - 5 pm-7 pm
Please Join Us To Celebrate The World March For Peace And Nonviolence Kick-Off At the Gandhi Statue in front of the Golden Gate Ferry Terminal at the Bottom of Market Street in San Francisco

October 2nd is Gandhi's birthday, the United Nations International Day of Nonviolence and the very 1st Day of the World March which will start in Wellington, New Zealand, making mile 1 of a 99,000 mile journey. Please join us for a celebration at Gandhi's Salt March Statue, Pier One, on the Bay Bridge side of the Ferry Building in San Francisco. Cultural/music performances by Mokai, Youth Poetry and the Tibetan Association of Northern California. Guest speakers include: Nancy Merrit, The Northern California Campaign for a US Department of Peace. Jackie Cabasso, Western States Legal Foundation. Dechen Tsering of TANC - Tibetan Association. Dolores Perez, Peace organizer for the Unitarian Universalist Church of San Francisco. Rev. Andre Shumake, Richmond Improvement Assocation. Professor Lehman Brightman of United Native Americans
The afternoon will end in candlelight vigil to wish a safe journey to our world marchers for peace! Six candles will be lit for the six continents that the World March will visit and pass through.
Saturday October 3, 2009
Harvest Picnic For Peace William Land Park, 3800 S. Land Park Drive, Picnic Area #GA21, Sacramento -- 1pm to 4:30 pm
Get to know other local and regional peace builders. Organized by the Northern California Campaign for a US Dept. of Peace. Friends and organizers of the World March for Peace and Nonviolence will also be there and are co-sponsoring this event. Please bring food, drink, musical instruments, friends and family. For more information, contact Trudi Richards at 530-757-7576
Sunday October 4th, 2009 - 1 pm
Noam Chomsky
Crisis And Hope In The Age Of Obama
First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco
1187 Franklin Street, corner Geary, In the Sanctuary
Noted linguist, author, and political analyst on U.S. Foreign Policy - Iraq, Afghanistan and Latin America and the U.S. economy. In dialog with activists who really think globally and act locally.
Participating: David Bacon, Author, Journalist, Antonia Juhasz, Author, Director of the Chevron Program at Global Exchange. Steve Williams, Co-Director, People organized to win employment rights (POWER)
Sponsored by UUs for Peace-SF and School of the Americas Watch-SF. Proceeds benefit the educational programs of the sponsors. Wheelchair accessible, seating is first come first served.
Admission $20, Seniors and Students $15, Sliding scale upon request.To purchase tickets, see

Glen Cove Shellmound Spiritual Walk

Please click on poster to enlarge

Hopi Foundation honors Fabri for work with torture survivors

The Hopi Foundation, with a center focused on the treatment and prevention of torture in Tucson, honors Dr. Mary Fabri for work with survivors of torture

By Hopi Foundation

KYKOTSMOVI, Ariz. - The Hopi Foundation announced that Dr. Mary Fabri of Chicago, Illinois will receive the 2009 Barbara Chester Award for her work with survivors of torture. The award will be presented at a formal ceremony in Flagstaff, on Oct. 3.
"In keeping with The Hopi Foundation's mission to promote traditional values of stewardship and care for all of life, we are pleased to honor the healing work of Mary Fabri," said Barbara Poley, executive director of The Hopi Foundation.
Fabri has worked on the frontiers of human compassion and commitment for and with torture survivors. Besides her outstanding clinical work, Fabri has made significant contributions as a co-founding clinical member of the Heartland Alliance Marjorie Kovler Center, the torture treatment program in Chicago, serving as president of the National Consortium of Torture Treatment Programs, clinically administering the Bosnian Mental Health Program, and being an advocate and trainer in the field of torture treatment.

Over the years, Fabri has contributed significantly to efforts to provide mental health treatment to survivors in Guatemala, Haiti, Rwanda, Iraq, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The scope of her efforts on-site in the international arena have greatly broadened individual and community therapeutic capabilities, reflecting innovative approaches, and have touched the lives of many. The award consists of a $10,000 prize and a Hopi hand-crafted silver eagle feather sculpture.
The award was established in 1999 to honor the life and work of Dr. Barbara Chester who helped pioneer the fields of torture treatment and sexual assault.
Requests for nominations for the award are sent to over 500 torture treatment centers and human rights organizations around the world. A diverse selection committee then evaluates nominations.For more information about the Barbara Chester Award, please refer to

The Hopi Foundation's programs include the Center for the Prevention and Resolution of Violence in Tucson
The Center for the Prevention and Resolution of Violence
Established in 1997, a center located in Tucson, Arizona which provides social, legal and educational services to refugees who are victims of torture. Owl & Panther Youth Project -- an anti-violence prevention project initiated the “Writing from the Darkness Project” which is a special creative writing, counseling program for at-risk children affected by torture, traumatic dislocation, refugee status or other family factors.

About the Hopi Foundation
The Hopi Foundation is a 501-(c) 3 non-profit organization incorporated in 1987. Its mission is to meet the charitable needs of the Hopi through grants, technical assistance and other services to villages and nonprofit organizations serving Hopi.For more information, visit

My name is Yesenia Sotelo and I work with Heartland Alliance for Human Needs and Human Rights. Thank you for writing about our Kovler center ( We could really use your help in the next few weeks.

This year was hard for many of the people we work with. Parents lost jobs, families lost homes, many fell into poverty, all while funds for services in city and state budgets were reduced and sometimes completely eliminated. But at Heartland Alliance, budget cuts haven’t stopped our work, we’re still providing help to people who need a home, or a doctor, or protection from harm.

However, we need support to provide these services and I hope that you can help. Can you post to Censored News about our Hope for a Hurting World gift catalog? People can buy gifts for each other from the gift catalog, and all of the proceeds go to providing services for the people in our community who need our help right now.

You can check out the gift catalog online at There are great gifts, including things like winter outerwear for a child, health care for a homeless person, or job skills training for parents. I’m really proud of the work Heartland Alliance does, and I hope others can be a part of giving back at the holidays.

I’ve attached a couple of images that you can use on your blog. You can also check out some videos of the people we work with at Please let me know if you have any questions. I really appreciate your help.


Yesenia Sotelo
Manager of Interactive and New Media
Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human Rights
208 S. LaSalle Street, Suite 1818
Chicago, IL 60604

Ben Carnes: In the spirit of total resistance

Open Letter to my Brother, Wanbli and to everyone:
By Ben Carnes, Choctaw
Censored News
Sept. 28, 2009
Thanks so much for all that you have done. I know that we have discussed this, and I support you in your decision brother. You came in and did one hell of a remarkable job, there is no one who has a thing to say about the effort and time you gave.
I also completely understand about having the freedom to speak without repercussion to the committee or Leonard. I was in that same position after our 1999 campaign, and I wrote Leonard a letter designed to get me fired, and proceeded to prepare for an action that would have guaranteed to create worldwide publicity as never seen before. However, I was later advised that there was something working with the White House, so I stood down and called off my action.
When Clinton left the White House without signing clemency, and the details were revealed to me later, I was severely disappointed that I had not followed through. The thought about the government keeping its promises to Native people -- is that it never has and why should Clinton be any different. Or Obama for that matter.
As we have discussed Wanbli, I feel the need to come from a broader approach to help not only Leonard, but Native people and others as well. It is time that we take destiny in our own hands, in a dignified manner, and let this occupying government know that we are done with being patronized, being mislead/lied to, and being used for photo ops!
Years ago, Bill Means said that in order to free the land; we must first free our minds! There is so much truth in this. We cannot go on expecting the government to do anything righteous for us, without us setting the course of action. The first step to freeing the minds is that everyone must remember that as Indigenous peoples of this hemisphere, WE HAVE NO BORDERS! The Indigenous peoples to the north and South of us are our relatives; we all speak a colonial language whether it is English, Spanish or French! Our strength is in our numbers, and those numbers can capture the attention of the world if we can come together and move forward on a hemispheric strike.
Can we organize such a strike to shut this hemisphere down? Can we shut down major transportation hubs, public utilities and can we count upon our non-Native allies to join us in this strike. It is a major sacrifice to us all if no one works, and we spend a week occupying major transportation hubs so commerce is disrupted!
It has been said that we will never get their attention until we hit them in their pocketbook. Well, it is time to see if we can amass the numbers to make this happen. It will take organization and massive coordination in different languages.
I can imagine what the governments response will be, a police/military one. Will they designate me as a terrorist because I am speaking about this and encouraging the thought so that we can achieve justice? Justice for Peltier, the Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiians) whose kingdom has been suppressed by the US, and the failure of the US to honor its treaties, etc.?
This government has never dealt honorably with us, and I doubt they will now. If they fear we will succeed in our efforts, they will call the tribal councils for a summit meeting to "resolve" the claims. The tribal council systems are an entity set up by the government. It is not a representation of the traditional governments that still exists.
I would like to see that the traditional leaders, headmen, clan mothers and spiritual leaders consulted and have input. These tribal council systems need to dissolve and we began exercising our sovereignty as an Independent nation and move toward reclaiming our territories.
When the term, "The Great White Father in Washington" first arose, it was a term of respect from one Chief to another. In modern times, it has become a derisive term meaning a thief and liar. Before I went to DC to do my personal fast and prayer, I wrote the comment on FB that I was going to Washington to see the Great Black father and I wasn't taking any crumbs. Someone felt it was in ill form, I looked at it and saw that for the first time in over two hundred years this term has changed, and will the actions of "the Great Black father" be any different? It was a question. I think we now have our answer. We cannot wait until the end of his term, like Clinton asked us, because Leonard shouldn’t have to wait that long!
In this year, we supposedly have been told through a contact that Obama was going to do something, but every time the time frame promised came and went, we were given another excuse why something didn't happen. So did Obama lie to stall us, or was someone yanking our chain? It doesn’t matter now, something has been set into motion.
Everyday Leonard sits in prison for an unjust conviction is a day he will never get to spend with his family. It is another day that we cannot get the support for a major congressional investigation to look at the FBI's Counterintelligence program that attacked so many organizations, and it was also the FBI who set up Coler and Williams on that day in Oglala. Their families need to hear the truth! Not the lies and propaganda by the ilk of Woods, Sennetts and the Trimbachs, including other members of the FBI.
It was two young boys with squirrel rifles that unintentionally foiled their raid on the AIM camp at Oglala, by cutting off their reinforcements. It was never a pursuit for Jimmy Eagle and a pair of cowboy boots. Not when they never actively investigated the murders of the traditionals or the AIM members. There is no way they can convince me that a pair of used cowboy boots was more important than the lives of the women and children who were murdered.
With the series of federal/state trials in the murder of Anna Mae Aquash, there will be mudslinging against Peltier, his attorney Ellison, and other members of AIM. Some former members of AIM will join the government in pointing fingers. There is something wrong when an individual who stood against a common enemy, joins them and then helps to prosecute and convict them.
What will be lacking is the name of former Special Agent David Price who told Anna Mae that she would be dead within a year if she didn't cooperate in implicating Peltier and others in the deaths of the agents. When they found Anna Mae's body, people saw Agent Price at the scene. When they asked if they could identify the body, they were told the body was too badly decomposed to be recognizable. So "Jane Doe’s" hands were cut off from her body (mutilation) to be sent to DC for fingerprinting.
It wasn't until Ellison moved for an independent pathology because they had reason to suspect the Jane Doe was Anna Mae, that they discovered the body was still recognizable as Anna Mae. David Price knew who the Jane Doe was, but they attempted a cover-up.
The feds have always attacked the women. I've heard from a few female supporters this year that believed they have been assaulted because of their support for Peltier. David Hill has been under constant surveillance and followed all over the country, and as everyone knows, I had been facing trial, but since they never had a case, it was dismissed in July.
My prayer in DC has been one of what is it going to take to free Peltier? The answer is that it is going to require a broader approach on a wholly different level.
I was reminded about the time I went to Columbia and met with the Indigenous peoples there. They told me that they needed our support because all the policies that affected them negatively came from Washington, DC.
So when we say we are the caretakers of the land and we call everyone our relatives, but do nothing on a significant level to help them, what does that say about us? Are we just talking?
There is another generation behind us who say they want to revive AIM. I say let it die. It is a new energy and direction that needs to set course. We need this without the baggage and differences that exists.
The government in the 1924 American Indian Citizenship Act confiscated our identity as Native People -- First Nations People, then a few years later the Ft. Sill Apaches were granted a Presidential Pardon since it was not inherent in the 1924 Act.
Technically, we remain Prisoners Of War and are born into captivity. I did not ask to be an American whose history has been one of genocide and theft of our lands and continued oppression of the people. I have no representatives who speak for me or the people in DC. It is a fallacy that we have endured and attempted to work with, but now it must end.
What is the plan you ask? First, each First Nation people who hears and reads this must decide if this is what they need to do and begin discussion with their traditional leaders, only they have the right to speak and deliberate for their selves. If they are in general agreement, then it is time to meet in a great council, I would be willing to host on my land here.
We would need to extend the invitation to all Indigenous peoples from this hemisphere to attend because they have a voice also. When we can reach a consensus, then we set up on the Mall in DC with a notice sent to the President and Congress that we are coming for a meeting. Since Tipi's are transportable, we can set up a major encampment on the mall and establish an area for this government to meet with us.
The historic presence of thousands of Tipi's on the Mall will have the attention of the world to see if this government is ready to deal honorably with us. One of the first points to be presented, to see if the government is prepared to acknowledge our rightful place in this hemisphere, is the immediate release of Leonard Peltier as a symbol of good faith. Leonard must not be a sacrificial lamb, not when millions of us have put so much into this. And that will be just the beginning to rectify years of dishonor by the U.S. government.
The rent has come due and the course of history must change. I know that when Obama made his campaign promises, he never expected this to arise. I know that he has other things on his mind, but we have been waiting for fairness and respect for 233 years!
We should also remind him that the White House sits upon the traditional lands of the Piscataway Indian Nation and that he never even considered asking traditional Chief William "Redwing" Tayac to welcome him. I sent word through a few of Obama’s campaign people – again, no sign of respect.
If they fail to meet or attempt to patronize us, then we must exercise our free will to create a just and fair society. We have to make change, we cannot continue to ask the government to do so for us. They never have and never will, so it is time they put aside world affairs and listen to us and act accordingly. The First Nations should also have a say and vote on how this country deals with others, and begin to restore the freedoms we have surrendered through our overall silence over the past 30 - 40 years.
There is much to do, and I call upon many others who we have known that have stood for Leonard to take his place and for others to come and take my place. I will not resign until I have someone capable to help Leonard and Kari in the office. The work I have set out will occupy quite a bit of my time, and it will be difficult for me to do both.
Just the work I've done for Leonard has set me way behind in land payments, my willing sacrifice for my brother has forced me to send my family to my in-laws for their safety and well-being. It has caused friends to become frightened of what the government "might" do to me to move away from associating with me so that they will believe they will be out of harms way "IF" it happens. That is their choice and their own free will. I do not demand anyone to sacrifice for Leonard or to help support me while I do this work. It has to come from people's own free will that believe in what I do.
I am not a non-profit so I cannot offer anyone a tax-deductions, nor do I want to be a NPO. Yet, I do appreciate the support that feeds me, keeps fuel in my vehicle, and whatever comes to help me keep the land I have. Others are stepping forward to do what they can to help me create a home or shelter for the coming winter. I currently live in a RV that needs some repairs to be fully functional, but it isn't going to be sufficient to keep me warm in the winter.
I've had a few critics who have attempted to discredit me and criticize me for who I am, even to the extent to say I wasn’t Indian! I expect they will begin again from this message. If they have a complaint, then they better look at what they have done for Leonard or other Indian people than sit safely behind their computer screens and spread misinformation. Who are they really, and what have they done, except point fingers? What real sacrifices have they made? Are they helping to get the word out about what is going on at Akwesasne, the missing and murdered women in Klanada, or showing support to other Native prisoners? I don’t see it.
I carry a belief that the Creator will care for my family and myself, including the visions I have for the land I live on, and if I need to ask for help, and they want to criticize, then everyone will know them for what they are.
The Creator moves people to send me a few dollars here and there, and at times it has been just enough to get by. For what needs to be done, I will begin to need more help and support from many, I would also need some assistance from attorneys and bookkeepers if they will offer their services. I’ll need help with answering correspondences, logistics, and translations, along with much more.
I need to get this land paid off so it can be placed safely into a trust and to find good hearted people who may want to live here and help with organizing this hemispheric effort to change history. People who can be trusted and can work together. This land needs to be a gathering place for what needs to be done and I’ll need help.
There is a sense of urgency here because I would hate to think about what would happen if Leonard were to die in prison. I saw the rage and frustration when his parole denial was made public; I was greatly concerned for many of you when I saw what you wrote. Be careful; don't give them the tools they need to take you away from us.
I've believed the mass raids by ICE a few years ago were an exercise in coordination to see how efficiently they can move to arrest people. I am sure all of our names are on a list, and they can scoop up a lot of us overnight so that by sun rise there may not be enough of us left to mount a significant protest.
We all have families that need us, and some of us have the safety of friends and families. You know my family is away safe, and I live alone here in the mountains, but I had to say what I have because I haven't seen or heard anyone else say it. And someone needed to.
I believe our time is now and we need to spread the word to as many people as possible, because there is no way in hell I can do this by myself!
I am speaking for myself, not as a representative of the LPDOC or any organization or other First Nations, but this is from my heart and from my years of experiences that indicate it has come to this. We cannot free Peltier as a singular issue, we need to bring it all together. If we can grow our numbers quickly, it can assure our safety for the time being. The LPDOC is a non-profit, and our association in an official capacity can be a hindrance through what Wanbli has to do, and what I need to do. We are not quitting on Leonard, we are just going to step it up by having the freedom to speak truthfully.
In the Spirit of Total Resistance,
Ben Carnes
P.O. Box 88
Gardner, CO 81040

AIM West: 517 Years of Indigenous Resistance

Public is welcome

AIM-WEST Presents
"517 Years of Indigenous Peoples’ Resistance to Colonization in the Americas-1492-2009”
Dia De La Raza

A benefit to bring attention to those who sacrifice daily for our Mother Earth; we are the memory of our ancestors.
Grandfather, I want my people to live. Lakota prayer
When: Monday, October 12, 2009
Where: Inter-Tribal Friendship House, 523 International Boulevard, Oakland (near Lake Merritt BART Station).
Time: 6 – 9:30 pm (film 7:15)
The event benefit’s AIM-WEST Annual Summit, scheduled November 23-27, in San Francisco (check website).
A selected film presents “Longest Walk-1978” with cast of familiar faces including the legendry Bill Wahpepah, Dick Gregory, Paul Owns Sabre, John Trudell, Ron Dellums, Phillip Deer, and Lehman Brightman, a must see, very historical. A short clip will be shown of the Mascot demonstration protest recently at Oakland Coliseum.
M.C. Jimbo Simmons of AIM, and Mary Jean Robertson, DJ of KPOO Radio 89.5 FM in San Francisco!
With special guests, local entertainment, Drummers, dancers, with traditional Mexicas, are welcome.
Guest speakers include Prof. Lehman Brightman, and Ms. Carol Wahpepah, Director, Inter-tribal Friendship House in Oakland.
A raffle, prizes, food and refreshments (bring your favorites to share!)
COVER CHARGE at the door $ 5.00 Kids under ten years free, no one turned away.
Event is co-sponsored by Inter-Tribal Friendship House 510-452-1235
*The event will be announced on KPFA Radio 94.1 FM and on “The Rock” during the Annual Sun Rise Gathering, on October 12TH.
The Public is invited!
For more information please call: 415-577-1492

September 28, 2009

Tony Gonzales: Redskins is our 'N' word

To: Mr. Al Saracevic,
San Francisco Chronicle Sports Editor

By Tony Gonzales
AIM West

I thank you, and Mr. Scott Ostler of Sunday Punch sports section for today’s article, which I consider it a follow-up to Ms. Knapp’s coverage of Atlanta Braves game in the CITY last May, concerning the mascot issue.

Your article is timely and appropriate which also gives the American Indian community a reprieve from a big societal wrong. As you are aware the campaign for change, and addressing mascots in sports, has a history and goes to the heart and opportunity, of having to report another form of institutionalized racism.

We, the first peoples of this continent, deserve much more than having negative images of our peoples’ and culture rendered to a form of mere entertainment. How can our treaties with the U.S. Government be taken seriously?

Indians are people not mascots! Often times when we protest this outrages practice at stadiums and coliseums, such as we did on September 19, 2009 in Oakland against the Cleveland Indians (A’s won!) the public would ask “But it doesn’t hurt anyone, so why bother changing it?”

This is a common misconception. These stereotypes and caricatures hurt both Indians and non-Indians alike. The impact these images have on Indian Peoples can be quite serious, particularly to the young. Non-Indians might feel quite differently about this subject, if the only images their children had to identify with in the society around them were stereotypes and caricatures. This can seriously damage their self-esteem and their ability to succeed in the world.

Also, Indian children, like any others are taught to respect their parents and to emulate their culture, traditions and values. However, it can be very confusing for young people to see their parents and their culture being mimicked and lampooned.

As a result of the ways in which Indian culture is denigrated, American Indians suffer from the highest rate of teenage suicide, school drop-out rates, alcohol and drug addiction and health care problems. As for non-Indians, the worst thing is that continuous association of Indians with these stereotypes, can encourage an unreal idea of who Indians are.

This can lead to a refusal to accept real Indians and their culture.

In addition, the power of these stereotypes can also cause non-Indians to be misled or duped by unscrupulous people who “dress up” in buckskin and feathers in order to fool non-Indians. Often, these imposters engage in such fraudulent activity in order to deceive the public and separate naive individuals from their money!

Finally, and in this regard, I recommend give recognition to an American Indian considered the greatest ball player of his time, and is in the Hall of Fame; and first to break the color barrier for all peoples, not just blacks like Jackie Robinson did for his peoples but none other than Charles Albert Bender of the Ojibwe Nation (1884-1954). He was a pitcher in major league baseball during the first two decades of the 20th Century. Now there is another great story in the annals of baseball in America.

Thank’s again and a big AJO to y’all!!
Go Giants!
Antonio Gonzales
AIM-WEST 415-577-1492

September 26, 2009

Listen: Haskell Students Go To Palestine

Red Town Radio:
Guest: Jodi Voice, Marei Spaola and Melissa Franklin Topics: Students from: Haskell Indian Nations University visited refugee camps in Palestine and will share with us what they learned. From JoJo: Show some love fam. My trip to Palestine was precious to say the least. I will share some reason as to why I went, about our group 7thGIV (7th Generation Indigenous Visionaries), and about the wonderful beautiful people there that couldn't wait to learn Please support the following pages: Jodi Voice,
The main partners in the delegation are SNAG (Seventh Native American Generation), a grassroots collective that publishes a magazine produced by young Natives across the Americas, Huaxtec, a community-based group that organizes around Xicana issues in the Bay Area, and Seventh Generation Indigenous Visionaries, a newly formed group of students from Haskell Indian Nations University in Kansas and Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) are providing logistical and organizational support. To read more of the trip go to:
Please consider making a donation to 7thGIV expenses by sending a check to MECA c/o 7thGIV, 1101 8th Street, Suite 100, Berkeley, CA 94710. You can make an online contribution on the MECA web site.

September 25, 2009

Denver American Indian Commission: Transform Columbus Day

From the Denver American Indian Commission:

The Denver American Indian Commission believes the city’s rich community of diverse tribes deserves a proactive change most of us can agree on — that rapidly approaching Columbus Day could be transformed into a day to honor our all of cultures and values. Only in recent years and in some places has the holiday become a tribute to Indian America, but the DAIC believes our Denver community could join the growing chorus of tribal nations and other Native and non-Native entities that choose to honor the continent’s original residents and its vital, pre-1492 history. We feel this is an opportunity we can’t take lightly.
Our present and future generations view their culture and themselves as being directly affected by how we celebrate our history. As it stands, the holiday reinforces the inaccurate notion that North America came into being in 1492, when “uncivilized” Native inhabitants appeared only to play a short-lived role in the founding myth, and soon vanished into history.
With growing, abundant evidence of complex pre-Columbian cultures in North as well as South America, we want to restore our ancestral tribal nations to the dignity they deserve. Therefore, the DAIC is joining a growing number of tribes and nations, like the sentiment of the 10,000-member Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians that this year voted unanimously to replace recognition of Columbus Day with a day to commemorate the cultural and religious center of Choctaw life.
“For Native Americans, Columbus Day should not be a day of celebration,” said Mississippi Band Chief (Miko) Beasley Denson. “His arrival on our shores marked the beginning of centuries of exploitation of our people and our land. Much better that we should celebrate our rich culture and our traditions.”The following have eliminated, replaced or changed Columbus Day, according to media and internet information: Navajo Nation, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Tohono O’odham Nation, Saginaw Chippewa Tribe of Michigan, Jicarilla Apache Tribe, and Gila River Indian Community; Cities of Berkeley, Portland, and Duluth; the states of Alaska, South Dakota, Hawaii, Nevada, and Alabama, and several colleges and universities, including Brown University, Rhode Island.
Although Cherokee and Muscogee (Creek) nations’ tribal offices remain open on the holiday, the Osage Nation and United Keetoowah Band’s tribal offices close and the tribes refer to the day as Osage Day and Native American Day, respectively. As an organization, the Native American Rights Fund does not observe Columbus Day as a holiday. The 350-member Gathering of Indigenous People in the Americas since 1992 has referred to the day as the International Day of Solidarity with Indigenous People.
The DAIC supports and joins the Episcopal Church in repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery, an inadequate excuse offered by the early Christian Church for the brutal Colombian invasion and theft of Native homelands. The Doctrine is also the basis for subsequent laws and policies that damage Native North America today.
Let us join the many tribes and nations that have already made positive changes in their communities.

United Native Americans: First militant Indian organization

United Native Americans, Inc Was The First Militant Indian Organization To Rise To National Prominence Back In 1968

25 Sep 2009
By United Native Americans

Greetings All My Relatives,

Being The Fact That United Native Americans, Inc Was The First Militant Indian Organization To Rise To National Prominence Back In 1968; We Would Like to Take This Time To Share With All The World Some of Articles Published In The First International; Indian News Paper "War Path" Both Written & Produced By Members of United Native Americans, Inc.
Also, We Would Like Point Out The Fact That It Was United Native Americans, Inc Whom Founded & Coordinated The First Native Americans Studies Program in The United States at UC Berkeley.
And Because of This Extremely Important Program, Most, if Not All of Today's Recognized Leaders In Indian Country Have Reaped The Benefits of Participating And or Graduating From The NAS & or The AIS Program Currently Being Offered Around The World. Today, We Are Now Able to Preserve Many of Our Different languages And Document Our Nations Creation Story's at These Esteem University's Around The World.

"Education is One if The Most Powerful Tools We Can Equip Our Youth With In order to Be Successful In Today's Society". Professor Lehman L. Brightman-National President of U.N.A. Many of The Events Documented In The War Path Have Not Been Viewed By Many, if Not Any of Today's Youth. These Historical Documents Are Available Upon Request. For More Information About The Many Different Accomplishments Of United Native Americans, Inc. In Our Over Forty One Year's Of Service To Our Community, Feel Free to Visit Our Web Page at United Native Americans, Inc. (or U.N.A.) was formed in 1968 in San Francisco, California to promote the General Welfare of Native Americans. There are no paid staff or officers in U.N.A. and all work is donated. U.N.A. is not funded and exists solely on the support derived from membership dues, the sale of U.N.A. Merchandise, Tee Shirts, buttons, bumper stickers, and Posters, plus the few donations that have been received.
U.N.A was founded by Indians for Indians and is controlled by Indians.
U.N.A. has been Labeled a "Militant" organization because of it's Aggressive Stand it has taken and because of the slogan it stresses--"INDIAN POWER", which is defined as Self-Determination, the Right to Run your Own Affairs and to Direct your Own Destiny, which is something Indian People Definitely Need. U.N.A is Definitely an Action Organization and if this means "Militant" then we are Militants. We as Native Americans, in order to perpetuate our Heritage, Exercise Constructive Leadership, and to perfect a Native American Organization which will Respond to the Needs of Native Americans.
U.N.A. Strives to Improve Indian Image.
U.N.A. has been one of the Strongest advocates to improve the "Negative" image of Indian People, and has been critical of the "Movie Industry" for their Exploitation of Indians, and the Stereotype they have created of the "drunken, inarticulate, savage." Academic Revolutionary; Lehman Brightman Founded & Coordinated The First Native Americans Studies Program in The United States at UC Berkeley.
U.N.A. Testifies In Congress.
In 1968, Senate Sub-Committee Hearings on Indian Education held in Washington D.C., U.N.A. National President, Lehman L. Brightman gave some very damaging evidence against the Bureau of Indian Affairs boarding schools and their policy of taking young Indian children way from their parents and placing them in 'off-reservation" boarding schools, thousands of miles away from their homes. Mr. Brightman called Indian Education under the Bureau of Indian Affairs a "National Disgrace."
U.N.A. Investigates Indian Boarding Schools.
U.N.A. has tried to act as a "watch dog" over the governmental agencies that control Indian affairs, and has been extremely critical of the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the U.S. Public Health Service for their lack of Aid and callous treatment of Indian people. Since 1968, U.N.A. has investigated four of the Bureau of Indian Affairs Boarding Schools because of complaints of "brutality, - lack of food, -overcrowded living quarters, and to find out why these four high schools were not state accredited." The four government boarding schools investigated by U.N.A. were: Sherman Institute in Riverside, California, --Stewart Institute in Carson City, Nevada, -- Pierre Indian School in Pierre, South Dakota and Phoenix Indian School in Phoenix, Arizona."
U.N.A. Investigates Indian Hospitals.
Due to other complaints by Indian people of "poor medical service and other wrong doings," U.N.A. investigated two Indian hospitals run by the U.S. Public Health Service and exposed the "outrageous practices" to the public and Federal Authorities. The Hospitals investigated by U.N.A. were: Phoenix Indian Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona and the Indian Hospital on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in Eagle Butte, South Dakota.
Services Provided by U.N.A.
The duties and services provided by U.N.A. are many and varied. U.N.A. provides the security of knowing that someone cares and will go to bat for them when all others won't. We fully realize that Indian people alone cannot rise out of this pit of poverty and neglect and it will take the combined efforts of Indians and Sympathetic non-Indians. For this reason U.N.A. accepts non-Indians as associate members who desire to help and their "expertise" in the fields of 'Law", Education, Medicine, etc, can be put to good use.
We as Native Americans, in order to perpetuate our Heritage, Exercise Constructive Leadership, and to perfect a Native American Organization which will Respond to the Needs of Native American. The Purpose of United Native Americans, Inc. Shall be:
(1) To Actively Participate in Promoting the Health, Education and Welfare of All Native Americans.
(2) To Encourage and Develop Leadership among Native American People.
(3) To Promote Cooperation among Native Americans and their Organizations.
(4) To Focus Public Attention upon those areas in which Injustices to Native Americans can be Fully Recognized and Corrected.
(5) To Encourage and perpetuate the Native American Heritage with it's individual Tribal Customs and Traditions.
(6) To Eliminate Prejudice and Discrimination Against Native Americans.
(7) To Promote the General Welfare of All Native Americans.
United Native Americans,Inc. Lehman L. Brightman: National President
2434 Faria Ave Pinole, California 94564 (510)672-7187 (510)672-7187 or (510)837-0074 (510)837-0074
Application For Membership
Name ...Birthdate ...Address ...Occupation ...Area you of Indian Descent? ...Are you a member of a Federally Recognized Tribe or Tribes? ...Give name(s) ...Do you speak an Indian Language? ...If so, What? ...To what other Indian Organizations do you belong to? ...Are you applying for regular or associate membership? ...Contact Information (Email and Phone Number) Signature of Applicant Date
United Native Americans, Inc. Lehman L. Brightman: National President 2434 Faria Ave Pinole, California 94564 (510)672-7187 (510)672-7187 or (510)837-0074 (510)837-0074
Number Deputy Date Indian Regular Membership Non-Indian Associate Membership

We Also Have Historical Video Footage That Is Currently Available For Public View Which PREDATES The Alcatraz Take Over By One Month. Indians Invade Mount Rushmore-1970 Part One:In 1969, at a time when there were only ten Native American PHDs, Academic Revolutionary Lehman Brightman Founded & Coordinated The First Native Americans Studies Program in The United States at UC Berkeley. Two Months Into Assuming the teaching position at UCB, Brightman & a Group of Students attended the Annual Meeting of The National Congress of American Indians.
October 9th 1969 NCAI Held their Annual Meeting in Albuquerque New Mexico. At that Time, says Brightman, "it was the largest, most politically powerful Indian Group in The United States---Every Indian Of Importance was there."
Scheduled speakers included Vice President Spiro Theodore Agnew & Walter J. Hickel, the Nixon-appointed Secretary of the Interior and Edward Kennedy. At the time Hickel, whose Office Oversaw the Bureau of Indian Affairs, was leading a Movement to END ALL FEDERAL TREATIES with Indian Nations. ''We can't just let nature run wild,'' said Walter J. Hickel. Professor Brightman, who had Testified before Congress Against Hickel's appointment Organized a Picket Line that Booed Hickel Off The Stand. Later, Members of United Native Americans,Inc Duped The BIA into Signing a Petition Calling For Hickel's Resignation. United Native Americans,Inc Was The First Militant Indian Organization To Rise To National Prominence.
Walter J. Hickel served as governor of Alaska from 1966-1968 and from 1990 -- 1994 and as U.S. secretary of the interior from 1969 -- 1970. Theodore Agnew- is the only Vice President in U.S. history to resign because of criminal charges.
Part Two.Indians Invade Mount Rushmore
On August 29th, 1970, a small group of dedicated young Indians Invaded Mount Rushmore, the so called "National Shrine of Democracy," located in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The Indian people who took part in this out standing feat, did so at the Invitation of the Local Indian people from Rapid City, South Dakota and the Surrounding Reservations. Most of these young Indians were from Different Tribes and Reservations who Volunteered to Help the Sioux in their efforts to force the Federal Government to pay for the illegal taking of their land 94 years ago in 1877. The Invasion started at 8:00PM. Sat. Evening, the 29th of August 1970, when 23 young Indians, most of whom were college students, braved arrest and fines to help the Sioux regain their Sacred Black Hills. By 7:00AM the next Morning after an all night game of hide and seek or (rangers and Indians) most of the protesters had reached the Top of the Mountain near the four faces of the Presidents, where they hung out a large flag, with the Words, "SIOUX INDIAN POWER." And After a Brief ceremony, they renamed the Mountain "Crazy Horse Mountain" in Honor of the Famous war chief "Crazy Horse."
The Principal Leaders of the Invasion were: Lehman Brightman, National President of (U.N.A.) Dennis Banks, Executive Director of (A.I.M), Russell Means, the Leader of the Cleveland (A.I.M.) group and Carrol Swan, who helped coordinate the whole affair. Once all 23 members had reached the top and assembled, they proceeded to Establish a camp and an occupation that would last for approximately three months, or until Severe winter weather forced the withdrawal.
The incredible story behind this invasion and Occupation started five days earlier, when the local Sioux Indian people from Rapid City, South Dakota and the surrounding reservations established picket lines at the base of the monument. But after four days and nights of demonstrations the park authorities were not only not listening, but seemed to think the whole thing was a big joke. That is until the local People invited out of state Indians and National Indian Organizations to Aid them in their heroic endeavor.

After taking the mountain and occupying it for a period of ten days or more, most of the college students and others were forced to return to school or their jobs, but by then the movement had caught on and Indian People from Across South Dakota were visiting the Mountain bring Food and Water and Replacing the original invaders by two fold. This was the First Indian uprising in South Dakota since the Sioux Wiped Out Custer in 1876, and suddenly young and old alike were taking new faith, Indians were Fighting Back.

During the Second day of the Occupation the park authorities sent a message they wanted to talk with the leaders of the group to determine what they wanted and how long they intended to stay, Lehman Brightman replied, "as long as the grass grows, the water flows and the sunshine's," which didn't seem to please them much.

September 24, 2009

American Indian Movement at UN: The Right to Speak


September 24,2009
The Right to Speak

In President Obama’s speech to the United Nations on September 23, 2009, he spoke of a ‘new direction’. Two years ago, four solitary nations voted against the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People, they were Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the United States of America. The Australian government has since reversed its vote and now support the international human rights standard toward Indigenous people.

The American Indian Movement asks the question of the Obama Administration: Will his administration recognize and support the international standard approved by the vast majority of the world’s nations?

The United Nations 64th year brings world leaders together to our sacred homeland to discuss the effects of the world’s problems to humankind. The American Indian Movement respects the right of all world leaders to speak. We support the right of Moammar Al Gathafi, leader of Libya. We respect the right of Evo Moralas, President of Bolivia. We respect the right of Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela. We respect the right of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, President of Iran. We respect the right to speak at the United Nations of all the world leaders visiting our homeland.

We often talk in terms of the first world, or the west; or the second world, the east; or the third world, or the non-aligned nations. Another important dimension to this concept is the fourth world of natural and Indigenous people. Peoples whose populations oftentimes go beyond geo-political boundaries. While these struggles have been going on for hundreds of years, the international community has, for the most part, ignored this reality.

One of the greatest crimes against humanity occurred right here in the United States of America. Support for the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People is a start to right this great wrong.
Clyde Bellecourt, co-founder American Indian Movement
Bill Means, International Indian Treaty Council
Chief Terrance Nelson, Vice Chairman American Indian Movement

Border Patrol bribes and twisted news

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
Photo: Angie Ramon, Tohono O'odham, at the site where her son was ran over and killed by the US Border Patrol. Photo Brenda Norrell

Today, ABC News is exposing the fact that US Border Agents take cash bribes at the border. Hello? ABC News acts like this is news. Where have they been?

Unfortunately, ABC News reveals its naivete and lack of knowledge of the facts by focusing on the US-sponsored fear line.

The focus is always on "terrorism" to keep Americans living in fear, while the truth gets buried. The truth is US Border Patrol agents are running drugs, murdering people and abusing Indigenous Peoples in their homelands.

The fear line keeps the cash flowing to border wall builders, US private security firms that excel in terror and torture and US private prisons where abuse thrives.

And of course the hype of the "T" word, "terrorism" increases the number of television viewers and advertising dollars for ABC News.

Angie Ramon, whose 18-year-old son Bennett Patricio, Jr., was run over and killed by the US Border Patrol, said US Border Agents murdered her son intentionally when he walked up on a drug transfer in the desert at 3 a.m. Angie has fought a lonely battle, with no help from the Tohono O'odham Nation, which has been coopted by Homeland Security and the US Border Patrol.

Angie has taken the case of her son all the way to the Ninth Circuit, but still there is no justice. In the end, she didn't even have an attorney at the Ninth Circuit, but she continued. Since the Ninth Circuit said she could file murder charges, she has been searching for funds to hire an attorney.

Still, Angie has the courage to continue. She sent a message to ABC News today.
Here's the twisted story at ABC:
Comment from Censored News and Angie Ramon, Tohono O'odham, to ABC News: The real story is that US Border Patrol agents are involved in drug running at the border. ABC News should not fall prey to the US-government sponsored fear line and instead be at the border to find out the truth. The truth is that US Border Patrol agents murder people and get away with it (check the federal court records), rape women and this is concealed and constantly abuse Indigenous Peoples in their own territories. Angie Ramon, Tohono O'odham, whose son Bennett Patricio, Jr., 18, was ran over and killed by the US Border Patrol near the border on tribal land in Arizona, sends this message to ABC NEWS. Ramon said the US Border Patrol agents, parked back to back in the desert at 3 am, intentionally ran over and killed her son when he walked up on the drug transfer in the night. She took the case all the way to the Ninth Circuit, but no court has had the courage to rule against the Border Patrol and expose the extent of drug running by Border Patrol agents. The fear tactic used by ABC News only fuels the industries of border profiteers: security companies, border wall builders and private prisons.
--Brenda Norrell, Censored News,

Phoenix Honduras Solidarity Action Sept. 24, 2009

International Solidarity with Honduras Action in Phoenix
at Honduran Consulate
Thursday September 244040 E. McDowell
4:00 - 6:00 PM
Honduras Solidarity Committee Press ReleaseFor Immediate Release
Date: September 23, 2009
Contact: Tupac Enrique (602) 466-8367 (602) 466-8367
International Solidarity with Honduras Protest Action in Phoenix at Honduran Consulate
When: Thursday September 24, 2009
Time: 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Where: 4040 E. McDowell (Honduran Consulate of Phoenix)
Re: Honduras Solidarity Committee demands Restitution of Democracy in Honduras and Reinstatement of President Zelaya
Phoenix, Ariz. – The Honduras Solidarity Committee of Arizona will participate today in an International Action of Solidarity with the people of Honduras who are mobilized across the country in support of President Miguel Zelaya. President Zelaya returned to Honduras on Tuesday in spite of the de facto government issuance of an order of arrest, and has been received in the Brazilian Embassy in Tegulcigalpa.
In the tense situation, the Honduras Solidarity Committee of Phoenix calls upon all peoples of good conscience to express support for a return to democracy and peaceful resolution of the crisis brought upon the people of Honduras by a military coup initiated on June 28th with the support of the US based School of the Americas based in Ft. Benning, Georgia.
The action in Phoenix , in protest and denunciation of the military coup will deliver a message to US President Obama and members of the US congress demanding an immediate end of military aid to the illegal regime of the defacto government led by Roberto Micheletti and challenging the Obama administration to speak unambiguously, and act decisively, by joining with the other nations of the hemisphere in restoring the constitutional government of President Mel Zelaya.
Recalling the period in history from 1865-1867, when the US government applied diplomatic pressure in favor of Mexico’s legitimate president Benito Juarez and against the illegal right wing usurpers of power, the battle for constitutional government in Honduras takes place during new era of democratization across the hemisphere.
The developments in the central part of the continent also are framed by the constitutional recognition for the first time of Indigenous Peoples, as declared by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples adopted by the UN General Assembly on September 13th, 2007.
Calling for investigation of the role of the US based School of the Americas at Ft. Benning Georgia in the military coup in Honduras, the Honduras Solidarity Committee of Arizona is also calling upon congressional support for House Resolution 630 before the Committee on Foreign Affairs, demanding the reinstatement of President Zelaya.###Links:
H. RES. 630
Condemning the June 28, 2009, coup d'etat in Honduras, calling for the reinstatement of President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales, and for other purposes.IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
July 10, 2009Mr. DELAHUNT (for himself, Mr. MCGOVERN, Mr. MARKEY of Massachusetts, Mr. SERRANO, Mr. FARR, Mr. OBERSTAR, Mr. GUTIERREZ, Mr. CONYERS, Mr. HINCHEY, Mr. FILNER, Ms. SCHAKOWSKY, Ms. LEE of California, Mr. GRIJALVA, and Ms. BALDWIN) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs RESOLUTION
Condemning the June 28, 2009, coup d'etat in Honduras, calling for the reinstatement of President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales, and for other purposes.Whereas Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales was elected President of Honduras in November 2005 in elections that were deemed free and fair by international observers;
Whereas President Zelaya and other political actors in Honduras became embroiled in a political dispute over whether to hold a non-binding referendum asking Honduran voters whether they wanted a constituent assembly to be established to amend the Constitution;Whereas, on June 28, 2009, the day that the non-binding referendum was to take place, Honduran military forces stormed President Zelaya's residence, apprehended him, sent him out of the country, and seized the materials for the referendum;
Whereas the Honduran Congress named Roberto Micheletti, the head of the Congress, as President and subsequently suspended a number of constitutional rights, including the freedom of association and of movement;Whereas the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights has expressed its concerns regarding human rights abuses by the de facto Micheletti government, including the arbitrary detention of Zelaya supporters;
Whereas the Organization of American States (OAS), the United Nations, and the European Union, representing governments from across the political spectrum, have condemned the coup d'etat, refused to recognize the de facto Micheletti government, and demanded the unconditional return of President Zelaya to office;Whereas, on July 1, 2009, the OAS voted unanimously to suspend Honduras from participation in the OAS unless President Zelaya was returned to office within three days;
Whereas, on July 4, 2009, the OAS unanimously voted to suspend Honduras;Whereas the Obama Administration has condemned President Zelaya's removal, supported the OAS resolutions regarding Honduras, and demanded that he be returned to office;
Whereas the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank have suspended aid and loans to Honduras;Whereas national elections are scheduled in Honduras for November 29, 2009;
Whereas President Zelaya has said that he will only serve until his term ends in January 2010;Whereas it is critical for the stability of Honduras that the November 2009 elections be free, fair, and transparent; and
Whereas U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced on July 7, 2009, that Costa Rican President Oscar Arias would seek to negotiate a solution to the crisis, and President Zelaya and the de facto Micheletti government have agreed to the mediation of President Arias: Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the House of Representatives--
(1) condemns the June 28, 2009, coup d'etat in Honduras and refuses to recognize the de facto Micheletti government installed by that coup d'etat; (2) calls on the Obama Administration to continue to refuse to recognize the de facto Micheletti government; (3) calls for the reinstatement of President Zelaya as President of Honduras; (4) urges the Obama Administration to suspend non-humanitarian assistance to the de facto Micheletti government as required by United States law as it deems necessary to compel the return of President Zelaya to office;
(5) calls for extensive international observation of the November 2009 elections once President Zelaya is returned to office to ensure that his successor is elected freely, fairly, and transparently; and (6) welcomes the mediation of Costa Rican President Oscar Arias and encourages the Obama Administration to provide any assistance President Arias requests in his efforts.
Phoenix Honduras Solidarity Action: Thursday Sept 24
4:00-6:00 PM
4040 E. McDowell

September 23, 2009

Tucson Humanitarians on Trial

Memorial Circle, Green Valley - October 7
Photo: Crosses representing migrants who died in Sonoran Desert/Photo at San Xavier by Brenda Norrell
Please join migrant advocates and humanitarians on Wednesday, October 7 at 9:30 a.m. for a Memorial Circle to commemorate the lost lives of almost 200 migrants in the last year alone, as they crossed the Mexico/Arizona border. Gather at the southeast corner of N. La Canada Drive and W. La Canoa in Green Valley, Arizona (just east across La Canada from the Green Valley Justice Court at 601 N. La Canada.)
This memorial gathering will precede the 10:30 a.m. trial in Pima Justice Court, 601 N. La Canada, Green Valley, of John Heid and Fr. Jerry Zawada, OFM. The pair were charged with trespass after "refusing to quit praying" at the virtual fence under construction near the U.S./Mexico border on August 6, Hiroshima Day.
John Heid explains:
The 17-tower virtual-fence system called Tucson-1 is the latest addition to a U.S. borderlands enforcement arsenal designed to funnel migrant workers into the most remote, rugged, and deadly terrain of the Sonoran Desert.
Robert Boatright, deputy chief in Border Patrol's Tucson Sector comments: "... the operating system modeled after battlefield needs rather than law enforcement needs makes the system more functional." (Arizona Daily Star, May 13, 2009)
Tucson-1 is no guardian angel of the borderlands, but rather its death specter. Our on site prayer vigil named the system for what it is - a lethal weapon - and we demand its removal. We now take our plea to court.
The courtroom is extremely small and will fit only a handful of people. John and Jerry invite people who would like to support them to hold signs on the sidewalk outside the courtroom during the trial. Bring water and a hat - it could still be hot!
The best support desired is any form of nonviolent public witness that draws attention to and seeks to alleviate the death and suffering resulting from U.S. border policy.
For more information, contact John or Leslie at (520)305-3276 or
[Please note that Fr. Roy Bourgeois, Maryknoll priest and founder of School of the Americas Watch, will be speaking on Grassroots Organizing for Justice in Latin America at noon in Tucson. You can come to the Memorial Circle in Green Valley and still make it to First Christian Church in plenty of time for the talk! Please scroll to the bottom of this message for details of the noon talk, as well as Fr. Bourgeois' 7 p.m. talk on women's ordination.]
August 6, 2009, Noon
Two Arrested in Prayer at Virtual Border Tower Under Construction in Arizona
Two men were arrested this morning during a prayer vigil at a virtual fence communication tower under construction west of Arivaca, in southern Arizona. John Heid, 54, a Quaker with Christian Peacemaker Teams and Fr. Jerome Zawada, 72, a Franciscan priest, had gone to pray at the site out of deep concern for the deaths of migrants resulting from border walls and virtual fences. Shortly after 11 a.m., a Pima County Sheriff's deputy called to the scene arrested both men for trespass. The pair were taken into custody and are being transported to the Pima County Adult Detention Center in Tucson for processing. Fr. Zawada stated today, "For the past 26 years I've come to know and love many of our migrant families who have taught me something of the heart of God. As a Catholic priest and Franciscan friar I feel called to accompany these suffering travelers and work with others who believe in this journey of compassion." John Heid said, "The virtual fence is as lethal as a bomb. It is billed by proponents as more aesthetically pleasing than a traditional fence or wall. It is touted as environmentally friendly, allowing animals to roam freely. Yet it remains undeniably lethal to human beings by forcing people further into remote desert terrain on their journey north. I decry this loss of life. This loss of civility. This loss of sensibility. Construction must be halted. Could not the $100 million being spent on these towers be put to humanitarian use? Humane means of resolving issues such as economic disparity and subsequent migration must be undertaken. Ultimately our own survival alongside that of our southern neighbors depends on cooperation." The pair released the following statement:
"On this, the 64th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, we call for an end to militarization in all its guises. An end to bombs, nuclear and conventional. An end to the use of Drones (unmanned aerial vehicles). An end to walls, fences and their virtual counterparts that divide us and promote fear of each other. An end to war without end.
"This morning we vigil at the gates of Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, home of a Predator UAV unit which now flies missions around the clock in Iraq and Afghanistan armed with Hellfire missiles which have killed hundreds of unarmed civilians. We demand an end to the unilateral slaughter.
"This afternoon we vigil at a communication tower, "Tucson-1" (virtual fence) construction sight. Fences and walls, solid and virtual, have funneled people in migration deeper into the harsh, dangerous terrain of the Sonoran desert, resulting in more than 5,000 deaths since 1994.
"These three - bombs, drones and fences/walls - are lethal weapons directed specifically at noncombatants. Cities like Hiroshima, villages in Iraq and Afghanistan and the U.S.-Mexico borderland have been deliberately targeted and violated. These are crimes against humanity. A betrayal of civility. In spiritual terms, a sin.
"Today we pray without ceasing for a world without weapons and fences. We pray for peace, for justice, for unity which makes walls and war obsolete."
For more information about Christian Peacemaker Teams, visit
- 30 -
Fr. Roy Bourgeois is a Vietnam vet, Purple Heart recipient, Roman Catholic priest of the Maryknoll Missionary Order and founder of School of the Americas Watch, who has spent four years in prison for his nonviolent protests. He will give two talks in Tucson on Wednesday, October 7, 2009.
* At noon at First Christian Church, 740 E. Speedway (at Euclid), Fr. Bourgeois will address the topic of:
Grassroots Organizing for Justice in Latin America
Sponsored by Southwest Witness Against Torture,
* At 7:00 p.m. at First Christian Church, 740 E. Speedway (at Euclid), Fr. Bourgeois will address the topic of:
Women's Ordination
Sponsored by Call to Action, Women's Ordination Conference and Call to Action - Tucson. For more information, contact Laurie Olson at (520)615-0183 or
$10/person suggested offering per event

Lehman Brightman Speaks on Struggle for Indigenous Studies

Dr. Lehman Brightman, National President of United Native Americans, Inc, will have a lecture/ discussion on the trials and tribulations we as First Nations People endured to implement Native American /Indigenous studies on the UC and CSU level

What: Ethnic Studies 40 Years later. Race, Resistance and Relevance.
Who: Dr. Lehman Brightman-National President of United Native Americans, Inc, lecture/ discussion on the trials and tribulations we as First Nations People endured to implement Native American /Indigenous studies on the UC and CSU level.
In 1968 when there was only ten Native American Indians that held a PHD it was to say the least, sum what difficult to persuade a University into Establishing a Native American Studies Program. When they finally agreed to it, it was up to me to recruit faculty and the students to make this program a success.
When: Thursday October 8th 2009, 2:10 pm-3:25 pm.
Where: Cesar Chavez Student Center, San Francisco State University.
For More Information Visit:
From Quanah Brightman:
Please find below a preview of the Alcatraz Occupation Collection page in SF State's digital archive (DIVA). You'll find 3 hours of unique archival footage shot between 1969-71 (43 items), featuring American Indian political protests in Northern California. You'll need a basic broadband internet connection to view the footage properly. This will soon be made publicly available online:
Also below is a link to KPIX item 100796 Lehman Brightman on Economic Opportunity Council. This is the clip from 1969 featuring Professor Lehman Brightman-National President Of United Native Americans,Inc.

Indians claim army surplus land near Davis
Indian occupation of army base near Davis continues
Indians accept land deed

Alex Cherian, Film Archivist
SF Bay Area Television Archive
835 Market Street, Room 524
San Francisco, CA 94103Tel: 415-87-4261
Subject: From The Alcatraz Take Over To The DQU Take Over
UNA Was There... - United Native Americans, Inc.'s
MySpace Blog Date: Wed, 23 Sep 2009 16:43:21 -0700

Canada Panics at Akwesasne

Mohawk Nation News
MNN. Sep. 20 2009. The Everett Report of March 17, 1922, found that, no attempt has ever been made to control the Indians on the St. Regis Reservation [Akwesasne] residing within the boundaries of Canada. The Chairman firmly believes that the St. Regis reservation lying within the boundaries of the State of New York is a separate and distinct territory from the control of the United States or State of New York as is the Canadian reservation. [p. 317]. This pertains to all of Great Turtle Island.

Just what are the rights of the aliens? Only what we gave them under the Great Law. Aliens are temporary. Should they cause loss, wrong, suffering or endanger the peace, the War Chiefs reprimand and expel them. [Wampum 74]. They have no voice in council. [Wampum 76]. Canada, US, Mexico or any foreigners cannot interfere with us.

The invaders washed up here with nothing. They stole, created money and intend to take everything from us. Their puppet band and tribal councils are more than willing to help them.

Red Jacket, Corn Planter and other Iroquois told Washington that they’re fighting over something that doesn’t belong to them - our lands, resources and waters. We own all the beds of all the waters of Great Turtle Island. [p. 186-7]

Their judicial and military hocus pocus shows they know that we never gave up anything. Canada, US, Ontario, Quebec and New York State promised to protect us from them.

International law provides that title to land is never taken away from the lawful, legal owner except in a legal and lawful manner. If it’s stolen and used for twenty years or a million years, they never get title.

At Akwesasne Canada Customs goons are desperately grabbing our cars and demanding $1000. Mohawks going home or visiting each other don’t have to report to foreign goons. It’s not enough these hoods grab us as we come over the bridge, take us out to the back and beat us up. We hear they might be advancing with a fleet of armored tow trucks to haul away more of our vehicles? Canada is threatening unarmed people with heavily armed RCMP, OPP, Cornwall and Akwesasne police forces.

CSIS mans the shack which illegally stops us. Like the Chinese water torture, Canada is trying to extort protection money from us one drop at a time.

Some of those community members who carry purple cards identifying themselves as Camel Toe Treaty people say it was signed in Central Park in New York City in 409 AD where Egyptian tombs were left behind. Their passport provides that we were signatories to the treaty that brought down the Roman Empire! This apparently gives Rotinoshonni:onwe freedom of movement. It has no basis in the Great Law or in history.

We hope Canada and US strategists are not thinking about bringing in the military that are probably hiding in the bushes. Before putting the boots to us, they want us to be confused, lost, angry and afraid. As always, we are giving a measured response. We want peace, not another 1990 Mohawk Oka Crisis style attack by 5,000 soldiers of the Canadian army. What are they afraid of? You can’t shoot the truth!

Canada, give it up. That imaginary line [border] doesn’t belong here.

We never renounced our Rotinshonni’on:we birthright. The three recent Federal Court of Canada rulings found that, because we live in Akwesasne and Kahnawake, we are not residents of Canada, and are not entitled to an investigation of brutal attacks and human rights violations by their agents. It is impossible for us to renounce our Ongwehonwe birthright. We cannot be citizens [another fancy word for slave] of Canada or the US. Who would want to be anyhow?

The Peoples Fire is purchasing lumber and materials to erect a building on the tent site. A phone list is available in case of attack or harassment.

Canada’s using mainstream media, or the hanging press, to try to turn people against us because we don’t want guns in the our community.

These attacks and threats show weakness and impotence, not strength. The predatory ruling class and their agents want to keep plundering the world with impunity. They need to steal from us, sell it and then buy more things for themselves.

Two party deals for our land signed between foreigners are illegal. The squatters of Canada and the US are afraid of being defined and giving an accounting. Hey! Show us a deed for one acre of land anywhere on Great Turtle Island that you got legally. Everybody in the world knows you can’t do it!

To help contact Akwesasne Peoples Fire 613-937-1813;

Kahentinetha MNN Mohawk Nation News, Note: Your financial help is needed and appreciated. Please send your donations by check or money order to “MNN Mohawk Nation News”, Box 991, Kahnawake [Quebec, Canada] J0L 1B0. Or go to PayPal on MNN website. Nia:wen thank you very much. Go to MNN AKWESASNE category for more stories; New MNN Books Available now!

Report of New York State Indian Commission to Investigate the Status of the American Indian Residing in the State of New York transmitted to the Legislators, March 17, 1922, also known as the Everett Report].
Helen Upton. The Everett Report – Historical Perspective. Albany Library.