August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Vancouver: No Dirty OILympics

Media release

12 February 2010 (Vancouver) — The entire Olympic Resistance march stopped in front of Alberta House today to say STOP THE TAR SANDS and STOP GREENWASHING THE OLYMPIC GAMES. Delegates from the Indigenous Environmental Network, tar sands impacted communities and Albertan residents, were joined by a diverse crowd of thousands of people, to condemn the environmental and social justice crimes of the Alberta tar sands and to confront Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach, who was set to speak.
The group was there to ensure the complete horror story of the tar sands was communicated to the crowd awaiting the opening of the 2010winter olympics and Premier Stelmach's Speech.
“We want to ensure that the public knows the true tarmageddon story. A story filled with toxic lakes, growing cancer rates, broken treaties,pipelines and human rights abuses,” said Warner Naziel from the Wet'suwet'en First Nation. “The impacts of the tar sands are being felt by people across Canada, the United States and beyond. My community is just one of many threatening by the sprawling tar sandsmonster. The Premier can't use the international Olympic spotlight to gloss over the enormous human rights and environmental price tag associated with the tar sands.”
This greenwashing of the tar sands by Alberta's Premier is beingechoed by several tar sands companies that are also financially involved in the games. Suncor, Petro Canada, RBC and TransCanada pipelines all have a stake in the toxic tar sands industry.
“The world is watching to see if we'll clean up our act. It's well past time this government stops selling out to big oil and corporate interests and begins creating the renewable energy economy of the future,” said Clayton Thomas Muller, Tar Sands Campaigner with the Indigenous Environmental Network . “These tar sands corporations and all the dirty oil money in the world can't buy a tar sands greenwash.While their profits rise, people die — this is the nature of this tarsands industry. It's time to shut them down.”
Extracting oil from the tar sands generates up to five times more carbon dioxide than conventional drilling, and irreversibly damages the land, water, and forests.
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For more information, please contact:
Clayton Thomas Muller – 1.218.760.6632 (Tar Sands Organizer, IEN)
Warner Naziel – 250.877.3915 (Wet'suwet'en First Nation Resident)
Scott Harris – 780.233.2528 (Prairie Organizer, Council of Canadians)

MNN: Could the sword hanging over Canada suddenly fall?

Mohawk Nation News

MNN. Feb. 13, 2010. The Vancouver 2010 Olympics had to retreat on the native land issue and to allow public political demonstrations. At least 5000 took to the streets to protest “No Olympics on Native Land" in the face of a militarized city. People can see injustice and they want to correct it.
The opening ceremony told the world that this is native land.
Two Mohawks did an amazing job commenting on the opening ceremony on APTN. They were not subservient and confidently spoke on equal terms as our people welcomed foreign nations to our land.
Ongwehone must be respected. We produced the spirit of equality and a voice for everyone. We welcomed the dispossessed, oppressed, poor and refugees who had no place else to go. Great Turtle Island has been a sanctuary from tyranny for the entire world.
For 500 years there has been a tremendous attempt to subjugate us and our territory. Even if we are outnumbered a million to one, this land is our birthright. Everybody in the world knows that.
The ruling elite in Vancouver are recent colonial British arrivals. As irresponsible capitalists they robbed and pillaged the salmon fishery and used native girls to work in the factories. Forests are being depleted. Water is being sold or polluted. Mining is stripping and poisoning our land.
The technical side of one of the main events requiring tremendous speed became dangerous. It killed a 21-year-old luge athlete from Georgia. Other lugers had gone off the same track at the same place. He hit a steel pole and died. Now a wall has been built there. The organizers have since decided the men should start at the women’s start line because it’s too fast and was not properly constructed. In the opening ceremony, a flawed fourth cauldron did not rise out of the floor.
The “Pineapple Express” is a regular El Nino weather front when the warm south Pacific weather moves north making the venues into slush mountains. Whistler postponed downhill practices because the downpour made the hill too treacherous.
Obviously this is a gigantic project. There have been flaws. They are now scrambling to make sure no one else gets hurt.
Canada’s resources have been drained at the insistence of the IOC. Quebec and Ontario police forces were brought to Vancouver leaving the east with skeleton staffs. 16,000 law enforcement and soldiers are standing around and looking for terrorists. In eastern Canada US military are on standby south of the border in case of a problem.
On opening day the biggest military assault is launched in Afghanistan. Thousands of villagers are being attacked and killed. NATO forces are on the same slippery slide as the dead athlete. They will hit their head. Do they think they are going to wipe out the Afghan rebellion doing a surge, putting more soldiers in and pushing them back?
The Mohawks did not want to be annihilated by Frontenac who waged a war of genocide. We could not be subdued. In the end they had to make treaties with us.
The Sword of Damocles hangs over Canada. The ruling government is looking forward to glory, power, luxury and fame.
The Olympics is their banquet. As they devour the moment, a sharp sword dangles dangerously from a hair directly over their heads.
The Iroquois Confederacy [of Onondaga, Mohawk, Seneca, Oneida, Cayuga and Tuscarora] made covenants with the Ongwehonwe nations of Great Turtle Island.
We became the lead negotiators with the European invaders and concluded the Two Row wampum agreement. The newcomers had to respect our birthright and inherent power. We never ceded anything. They can never have legal rights over us, our land, waters, resources and air. They are visitors.
The financial oligarchy always looks for puppets, who eventually turn against their masters.
During the US Civil War the French provided advisers, arms and encouragement to the south to fight the north. When it was over, a Seneca sat between them and helped negotiate the settlement. [History and Culture of Iroquois Diplomacy, Jennings and Fenton].
In the fights between the French and English, we always and continue to remain neutral. We Indigenous do not want war on our territory. The Ongwehonwe land owners should negotiate any settlements between these conflicting factions.
This current propaganda calling the Mohawks of Kahnawake near Montreal as racists is bogus. It is meant to justify Quebec moving in. Kahnawake is a neutral enclave that is not dominated by the Separatist-French-European interests in Quebec.
Quebec may even already be dominated by foreign interests who want to take over Canada. Quebec could be the beachhead to get a foothold into Great Turtle Island to place missiles, soldiers and military bases.
The innocence of dedicated athletes should remain untouched. We hope that the death at the Olympics is not a bad omen. We feel bad that this young man died needlessly. We give our condolences to his family and the athletes. Amateur sports should remain with the people rather than become a commercial orgy of capitalists, bankers and corporations.

Kahentinetha Horn, MNN Mohawk Nation News
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