August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark in Defense of Mohawk Splitting the Sky

Citizens’ arrest
The trial of the man who tried to arrest George W. Bush (Videos)
by Joshua Blakeney*

On March 17, 2009, Mohawk activist Splitting the Sky (STS) attempted a citizens’ arrest on George W. Bush in Calgary (Canada), his first foreign visit as a private citizen without diplomatic immunity. Brutally arrested for his action, STS earned his "day in court" in March 2010 to highlight the hypocrisy of the Canadian Government for allowing Bush into Canada, in breach of its own laws. STS is a compelling example of the duty of citizens to act when our governments and their agents are derelict in their own duty. Former U.S. Attorney-General Ramsey Clark plans to be in Calgary for the June 7 sentencing of STS. Joshua Blakeney believes that Clark’s presence, as well as international public opinion, will mount pressure on the Canadian judiciary who failed to issue an arrest warrant for Bush and who now must decide the fate of STS.
Splitting the Sky attempting to break through police lines outside the Telus Convention Centre in Calgary, Canada, on 17 March 2009, to make a citizens’ arrest of War Criminal George W. Bush. The Canadian police arrested him instead. "George Bush hasn’t suffered at all over the monumental suffering, death, and horror he has matter how many American soldiers have died on a given day in Iraq (averaging well over two every day), he is always seen with a big smile on his face that same or next day” -
Vincent Bugliosi, The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder, 2008 [1]
Canadian Man Could Be Sentenced to Two Years in Prison for Implementing the Law:
Former US Attorney-General Ramsey Clark to Speak at the University of Calgary’s Peace Consortium in Defence of Splitting the Sky
Ramsey Clark will arrive in the Canadian oil-patch city of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, this coming June 6th and 7th, mounting pressure on Judge Manfred Delong, who is presiding over the sentencing process in an epochal trial which some have dubbed: “The trial of Splitting the Sky versus George W. Bush.” Splitting the Sky (STS) on the advice of legal experts Ramsey Clark, Gale Davidson and Anthony J. Hall attempted a citizen’s arrest on George W. Bush on March 17, 2009 when the former US president was addressing an audience of business people at the TELUS Convention Centre in the downtown of Calgary [2]. In his March 2010 trial STS invoked the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes legislation, which was enacted by the Canadian parliament in 2000, to submit to the court that he was implementing the law by seeking to apprehend Bush, and was unjustly arrested by police who were in effect “aiding and abetting a credibly accused war criminal.” Former US Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney came to Calgary to attempt to testify in the March trial but was prevented from doing so as the judge shut down the trial earlier than anticipated. Instead McKinney spoke at the University of Calgary in support of Splitting the Sky [3].
Read more and watch videos ...

Native Sun: Deputy reached for gun, not taser, in fatal shooting

Native Sun: Deputy reached for gun, not taser, in fatal shooting
Thursday, May 27, 2010
This story was written by Randall Howell and is copyright Native Sun News.

RAPID CITY, SOUTH DAKOTA -- The sheriff’s department deputy who fatally shot an Oglala Lakota man in a field near Rapid City was carrying a taser, but did not use it.

Instead he fired five fatal bullets into Christopher J. Capps, a 22-year-old college-bound student who lived in the same neighborhood where he died in a hail of bullets on May 2.

Despite the fact that his only weapon allegedly was a “sharp stick,” Capps was slain by Pennington County Sheriff’s Department deputy David Olson, who was temporarily suspended – a standard law enforcement practice during a shooting investigation.

Capps, the son of Jerry and Jaylene Capps, had lived with his family in the mobile home community for about a dozen years and had been accepted for enrollment at the University of South Dakota-Vermillion, where he had plans to study computer animation and biology, before his life was ended with up to five bullets from a “duty handgun” fired by Olson.
Related Stories from Native Sun, posted at
Native Sun: Police shooting of Oglala man ruled as 'justified' (5/19)
Native Sun: Oglala Sioux family sends son to the spirit world (5/13)
Native Sun News: Deputy shoots and kills Lakota man, 22 (5/6)

Border Residents Oppose National Guard to US/Mexico Border

To President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500
To Members of the U.S. Congress Washington, DC
May26, 2010
Migrant shoes from Sonoran Desert/Southside Tucson/Photo Brenda Norrell
Border residents oppose calls for deployment of the National Guard to the U.S.-Mexico border
Border communities who had hoped for a rational and accountable border policy from the Obama Administration are deeply disappointed at the news of the authorization to deploy National Guard troops to the border. We are also deeply disappointed by calls from Congress to deploy as many as 6,000
National Guard troops to the border.
Proposals to deploy the National Guard are ill-conceived and motivated by electoral politics rather than border realities. In the course of history, presidents have rarely called up the National Guard. Deployment of these forces has almost always been limited to emergency situations and for good reason. The creation of a national police force is anathema to our fundamental values and to the protection of individual liberties.
As men and women living in the border region, which includes metropolitan areas as well as small towns, we have tried time and again to share our concerns about the militarization of the region with members of the Administration and members of Congress. But it seems we are not being heard and the policies of this Administration, far from being the change that we were promised, mirror the policies of the prior Administration and may even be worse with respect to border enforcement.
To be clear, there is no emergency at the border that would warrant the deployment of the National Guard. Immigration flows are down and border cities are among the safest in the country. Violent crime is rare and when it does happen, as in the case of the Arizona rancher who was recently killed, the perpetrator is more likely to be a citizen than an immigrant. The only “emergency” is the political emergency of upcoming elections.
As residents of the border region, we refuse to allow our communities and our quality of life to be sacrificed in a political game played far away from this region by people with little appreciation for the vibrancy of the region and who are motivated by politics rather than actual border needs. We consider the deployment of the National Guard an affront to border communities and oppose the militarization of our region based on the following:
• The militarization of our border has already reached an extreme level and brought with it
negative consequences for those who live there. Our economies are choked by inefficient
border crossings, our civil rights are pushed aside, and our quality of life is seriously diminished.
Worse, our safety is being sacrificed by those who believe that soldiers trained for war belong
near family neighborhoods or should be involved in supporting domestic law enforcement. Let’s
not forget that in 1997, U.S. Marines sent to help secure the border, mistakenly shot and killed a
teenage U.S. citizen who was peacefully herding goats.
• Militarization is a misguided and unnecessary response that is not based in reality or in the
opinions of President Obama’s own border experts. Homeland Security Secretary Janet
Napolitano has said repeatedly that her Border Patrol agents have operational control of the
border. Crime statistics in border cities and counties show that crime is both low and decreasing.
Yet, we are being told once again that we must secure the border, just three years after we built a border wall, added thousands of new Border Patrol agents and deployed virtual enforcement
• Militarization costs us all. Continuing to throw money, resources and military responses at the
border is not fiscally responsible, efficient, or humane. The ever mounting costs of militarizing
the border are costs borne by taxpayers who can ill afford ineffective and ill-conceived political
• Recourse to the military as a policy option for civilian law enforcement is a disturbing
precedent. Forces trained for combat, should not be used for enforcing civil laws. As a matter of
fundamental U.S. political values, the military should be withdrawn from all normal law
enforcement activities, even in supporting roles.
It is time to rethink our border policy. Increasing the quantity of armed agents and soldiers on our southern border does not enhance our national security, but in fact undermines it by misallocating resources. Humane border policies should emphasize quality law enforcement, and the effective focus of resources on real threats in the region, while ensuring that border communities are consulted on their specific needs, and that the rights and well-being of border residents are protected and upheld. Toward this end, we need the following:
• Consultation with local border communities on a regular basis about border enforcement;
decisions about the border should not be made in a vacuum in D.C.
• More accountability and oversight of immigration enforcement officers, who have become the
largest law enforcement presence in the border region.
• A standardized complaint process that aggregates complaints the length of the border should be implemented to better understand potential abuse of power and civil and human rights
violations. Enforcement agencies should publicize this data and then use appropriate
performance measures to correct gaps in current or ongoing training.
• Increased funding for ports of entry to facilitate the flow of legitimate goods and people
authorized to work, visit or contribute to the nation’s economy.
• Compliance with environmental protection laws without exceptions for the border; we deserve
the same protections as the rest of the country.
• Compliance with national and international civil and human rights protections, and creation of
humane detention and short-term custody standards at the border.
• A zero-migrant-death standard that is incorporated into enforcement policies and practices and addresses the mounting death toll—over 5,000—of migrants who lose their lives as a result of inhumane enforcement strategies.
• Comprehensive immigration reform that moves beyond enforcement and focuses on fixing the
interconnected parts of our broken immigration system.
• Economic development for Mexico, our second largest trading partner and primary source of
immigration; a stronger Mexican economy would benefit both countries economically and ease
migration pressures.
The federal government is as responsible for protecting the lives and well being of border residents as it is of protecting residents of the interior of the United States. Unfortunately, border residents have borne the burden of national security under the current hard-line strategy, but can do so no more. We oppose the deployment of the National Guard to the border as a misguided political response, and we urge our national leaders to pursue real solutions to border enforcement that take into account the needs of the border region.
American Friends Service Committee (CA)
San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium (CA)
San Diego Foundation for Change (CA)
Border Action Network (AZ)
First Christian Church of Tucson (AZ)
ACLU Regional Center for Border Rights (NM)
Border Network for Human Rights (TX)
Immigrant Justice Alliance (TX)
Freedom Ambassadors (TX)
Casa de Proyecto Libertad (TX)
Project Puente (TX)
U.S.-Mexico Border and Immigration Task Force

Rev. Robin Hoover, Ph.D.
Pastor of First Christian Church
Migration Ministry
740 E. Speedway Boulevard
Tucson, Arizona 85719

Houston: True Cost of Chevron: Tom Evans, Alaska Native, Cook Inlet

From True Cost of Chevron in Houston:
I have posted videos from our friends who are: Indigenous, Native, Asian, Pacific Islander, APIA, African, African American, Latina and many others here on my youtube channel. Please feel free to repost as far and wide as possible.
Diana Pei Wu
NEW CELL NUMBER: +1 510 333 3889
E: dianapeiwu (at) gmail (dot) com
Skype: dianapwu :: Twitter: dianapeiwu

Phoenix March Against Racist Legislation May 29, 2010

Get Ready to March against SB1070 On May 29th, tens of thousands of people from all over the country will come to Phoenix and march to repudiate SB1070. We will demand that Congress and President Obama stand on the right side of history and take immediate and concrete action to stop SB1070 in Arizona. Join us in making history on May 29th! March to Stop SB1070!
Gather May 29th at 8:00 AM: The March will start at Indian Steele Park (Indian School Road and N 3rd Street) march to the State Capitol (N 17th Ave and W Adams St)
Tel: (602) 314-5870 /
For info on caravaning from Tucson call Derechos Humanos @ 770-1373 For more information:
Diana Perez: (602) 579-2879 Leah Carnine: (541) 514-1694
National Day of Action Against SB1070
May 29, 2010
O'odham Solidarity Across Borders Collective sends you greetings from occupied O'odham lands, We urge all who support indigenous nations and migrant communities to join us on Saturday May 29th at the National Day of Action Against SB1070 to demand that Border Patrol (BP), Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE), their parent entity, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Obama administration end militarization of the border, end the criminalization of immigrant communities, and end their campaign of terror which tear families apart through increasing numbers of raids and deportations.

This contingent is in support of the O'odham elders, and other indigenous elders that will be leading the march. It is a follow-up to last Friday’s (May 21st) Peaceful Occupation of the US Border Patrol Headquarters in Tucson, AZ. We hope to use this formation to voice the end of border militarization and racist, colonial laws that attack not just indigenous communities, but migrant ones too. We hope to project true Indigenous/Migrant solidarity in the face of the state's police oppression, and the immigration reform movement’s suppressive tactics to further marginalize the indigenous voice in border policies and colonial laws that affect us all.

The contingent also calls on the State of Arizona to repeal the racist Senate Bill 1070 that criminalizes immigrant communities on the state level, makes it illegal to transport or harbor an undocumented person regardless of family relationship, requires police agencies to engage in racial profiling, and ultimately is an attempt to ethnically cleanse Arizona of those with brown skin.

The contingent demands:
• An end to border militarization
• The immediate repeal of SB1070 and 287g
• An end to all racial profiling and the criminalization of communities of color
• No ethnic cleansing or cultural genocide
• No border patrol encroachment/sweeps on sovereign native land
• No to comprehensive immigration reform that further militarizes the border or exploits migrant labor
• No Deportations
• No Raids
• No ID-verification
• No Checkpoints

• Yes to immediate and unconditional regularization (“legalization”) of all people
• Yes to human rights
• Yes to dignity
• Yes to respect
• Yes to respecting Indigenous Peoples inherent right of migration

Support looks like:
• Banners calling for an end to border militarization,for migrant/indigenous solidarity, and drawing the connection between racist laws like SB1070/287g/HB2281, immigration reform and the destruction of indigenous and migrant communities.
• Noise makers, puppets and other visuals, etc.
•Cop Watching, video documentation, legal observation of the contingent and the march to ensure safety in light of police repression
•Medics prepared for sun exposure, dehydration, police attacks
•Our own “security” – not to police our people, but to deescalate the police, step-in as a barrier in case of a police attack, help people cross the street, etc.
•People who can flyer/lecture expressing our message.

Join us on Friday, May 28th to help prepare for the following day. Bring materials to finish making signs, banners, noise makers, etc. To connect, let us know you're down, meet up with us on Friday, if you have any questions or for more information, contact Alex Soto @ 602.881.6027 or Ned @323.541.2352 or
Please check out

Native American Heritage Coalition
By Benjamin Chee
(602) 930-6791
Native American Heritage Coalition of Phoenix Position on Arizona SB1070

PHOENIX – The Native American Heritage Coalition (NAHC), an organization of urban Native American tribal members based in Phoenix, Arizona stands in opposition to Arizona SB 1070 as a violation of civil rights and human rights, and is taking action in support of the legal challenges now moving forward in the courts and at the community level.

“The Native American Heritage Coalition is adamant in our opposition to SB 1070 because we are now drawn into the maelstrom of possible racial profiling,” said Benjamin Chee, spokesperson for the NAHC.

The NAHC is a long standing organization of Native American community members that led the fight for the preservation of the Indian School property and oversees the development of the Steele Indian School Park on behalf of the interests of the diverse tribal constituencies of the City of Phoenix.

Addressing the immediate and future impact of SB 1070 for the Native American community, Mr. Chee stated: “Due to inter-cultural marriage many of our tribal members have Hispanic names. This fact will obviously influence targeting us in the application of SB 1070.”

In addition, the State of Arizona is well known for its richness of it's diverse cultures, concern for ecological preservation as well as its vast economic potential. Its continuing prosperity depends upon effective partnerships among the states many communities. Constant efforts must be devoted to stimulate participation in the building of a diverse yet unified citizenry.

In terms of the impact of the national and international economic boycotts of Arizona in reaction to the passage of SB1070, the NAHC is calling upon the leadership of the business communities across the state and among the tribal nations to work together to address the economic injustices that are exacerbated by the impact of SB1070, and move into a proactive comprehensive economic development strategy that builds upon Principles of Economic Justice, the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights for all.

Obama Administration halts its oil drilling permits in Arctic

Contact: Kierán Suckling (520) 275-5960

Interior to Suspend Shell Oil Drilling Permits in Alaska
Center Applauds Action, Calls for Stronger Measures, Removal of BP Exec from Interior Post
By Center for Biological Diversity
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Embattled Interior Secretary Ken Salazar will announce today that Shell Oil Company will not be permitted to drill for oil in Alaska’s Beaufort and Chukchi seas this year. Amid intense protests, lawsuits, and administrative appeals by environmentalists and native Alaskans, Shell had planned to begin drilling this July.

It is not clear when the Interior Department will decide whether Shell will be allowed to drill for oil in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas in 2011, and under what conditions.

“Suspending Shell’s drilling permit this year is the first thing Ken Salazar has done right in response to the Minerals Management Service scandals,” said Kierán Suckling, executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity. “We applaud the Secretary’s decision and hope that he permanently ends all new offshore oil drilling in Alaska. Drilling for oil in icy Arctic waters is like playing Russian roulette. There is no way to clean up a spill there and endangered species such as polar bears, whales, walruses, and seals are already under too much stress.”

“Much more needs to be done, and done right away,” said Suckling, “including an immediate ban on environmental waivers for oil drilling, removal of BP executives from oil oversight posts in the Department of Interior, and rescinding the Interior’s plan to open up new areas on the Atlantic coast, eastern Gulf of Mexico, and Alaska to new offshore oil drilling.”

The Center for Biological Diversity call upon Secretary Salazar to immediately take the following actions::

1. Remove former BP executive, Sylvia Baca, from her job as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management. Secretary Salazar expressed outrage at the Inspector General’s finding earlier this week that the revolving door between the oil industry and the Minerals Management Service has undermined the agency’s effectiveness and credibility. He did not mention, however, that in June, 2009, he himself appointed a BP executive to oversee the Minerals Management Service.

“Sylvia Baca is a classic example of the revolving door between oil companies and the MMS,” said Suckling, “It was a terrible judgment call to appoint her; it is politically catastrophic to keep her. If Salazar is serious about reform, he needs to start with his own interest conflicted appointments.”

2. Ban the use of environmental waivers for offshore exploration and production plans. Such waivers are designed for very small impact projects such as constructing hiking trails and outhouses. There is no possible scenario in which an offshore drilling project—whether deepwater, ultradeepwater or shallow water—can be considered a non-threat to the environment, economy, and endangered species.

3. Rescind all drilling approvals issued with environmental waivers. Hundreds of dangerous offshore oil platforms are operating today in the Gulf of Mexico without having undergone any environmental review. These dangerous drilling projects are operating illegally and threaten the Gulf with additional oil spills.

4. Enact, as the Department of Interior first announced on May 6, 2010, a moratorium on the issuance of permits for “all new drilling activity.” This first Interior description of Salazar’s verbal moratorium was properly broad and would have captured the kind of drilling permit that BP’s Deepwater Horizon was operating under at the time of its explosion. The Interior has since dramatically narrowed the moratorium to let scores of drilling actions go forward, including exactly the kind of drilling that the Deepwater Horizon was doing.

5. Rescind the President’s plan to open up new areas on the Atlantic Coast, eastern Gulf of Mexico, and Alaska to offshore oil drilling. The President’s announcement, made on March 31, 2010, three weeks before the BP explosion, was made on the false premise that offshore oil drilling is safe.

6. Ban all new offshore oil drilling, beginning in Alaska. As a nation, we need to transition to clean energy sources such as sun and wind as fast as possible. Pushing forward with new, dangerous and dirty offshore oil drilling sends the wrong signal to energy companies and technology developers. Continued subsidizing of big oil is a major hindrance to our nation’s development of clean energy.
The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 260,000 members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.