August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Parasite Reporters

The Parasite Reporters

In the bargain basement of news, the reporters are out to deceive you and censor the authentic voices of grassroots Native Americans

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

The parasite reporters continue to plagiarize for a paycheck the hard work of others. In Indian country’s national news, it works this way: A reporter searches the Internet looking for prey. They are searching for authentic journalism that can be plagiarized, rewritten, without getting caught.

The parasite reporter combines the work of journalists on the web with quotes from written statements, or a phone call, to deceive readers. The goal is to make you believe the reporter was actually present.

To further deceive you, a photo is added. Like the Huffington Post which profiteers from the earnest work of writers without paying them, newspapers targeting American Indian readers often use the work of photographers without paying them.

These armchair reporters are now writing the majority of Indian country’s national news. These newspapers no longer have reporters in communities, on the scene, covering the news. They reward their reporters for not being there, for rewriting the work of others.

An armchair journalist can easily turn out a story in an hour, based on an article that came about due to the financial and personal sacrifice of a real news reporter.

There is also the “copy and paste” method. When there are many public statements on an issue, like the misuse of Geronimo’s name, then reporters copy and paste quotes from several statements, without bothering to interview anyone.

The reporters are not the only ones to blame for this plummeting of ethics in Indian country journalism. The editors and publishers are also to blame for encouraging reporters to sit in their easy chairs, and steal the hard work of others, both their words and their photos. In the end, it is the editor or publisher who decides to pay the reporter for the continued theft and deception.

In some cases, an editor continues this because it is easy for them, or the reporter is a longtime personal friend, or the reporter at some point was their lover.

There is a second type of parasite reporter. It is the non-Indian reporter who drives out to Indian country each week to get a paycheck. There is one primary focus of his news articles: To encourage political division and promote tribal infighting.

Like all newspapers, Indian country's newspapers are influenced by their advertisers, including the CIA and FBI. Meanwhile, AP reporters covering Indian country give priority to corporations and politicians, easily reached by telephone.

When it comes to uranium mining, tar sands, toxic dumping, coal mines and power plants in Indian country, AP reporters who refuse to give priority to the voices of grassroots Native Americans fighting to protect the environment are complicit in the moral crime of targeting Indians with industries that result in disease and death.

Why should any of this matter to you? Because it is you the reader who is being duped. You are the one being deceived and cheated. You are the one being served up leftovers and stolen goods. The reporters and editors are smiling all the way to the bank. Some of these armchair reporters and parasite reporters in Indian country have been doing this now for 20 to 30 years.

On the web now, there is an abundance of trite, unoriginal, reporting. Issues are intellectualized and buried in rhetoric, with long words and jargon. These are used to camouflage the lack of substance and the fact that the article is a personal essay, not news reporting.

In this bargain basement journalism, the voices of grassroots Native Americans are not only ignored, their voices are censored.

What can you, the reader, do? Challenge the writers and editors. Ask the reporters if they were present at a news story and ask them where their information came from. If a reporter’s name sounds like a hoax, it might be, dig deeper. Investigate the reporters and question the editors. If they call, or e-mail you for a quote, ask them to be present in person to cover an event. Don't fall for their excuses and empty promises. Don’t let them cheat you out of an article with integrity.

Ask them why they refuse to cover the truth of abuse in Indian boarding schools, the bogus wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and toxic dumping in Indian country. Ask the armchair journalists why they further victimize victims to get a paycheck or refuse to question where millions of dollars in revenues are going from a casino.

Ask the editors why they don’t have a reporter out at Big Mountain, on Western Shoshone land or on the border with the O’odham.

Challenge the reporters and hold them responsible as stewards of the public trust.
Editor responds with profanity

In the news this week: Indian boarding schools: The media as holocaust deniers:

When a reader of Indian Country Today questioned why an article appeared which portrayed Indian boarding schools as positive, the opinion editor at ICT cursed out the reader. Because of the vulgarity used by the ICT editor, his e-mail is not being posted here, but a copy can be e-mailed upon request. Read more about the reactions to this response on facebook:  brenda.norrell  The editor's vulgar e-mail followed sincere comments to ICT in regards to the abuse and genocide of Indian boarding schools, the denial of this holocaust and the way lopsided articles prostitute history.

Anyone who has walked through the cemetery at Carlisle Indian School, or the marsh of ummarked graves at Haskell, knows what these children suffered. The rapes, tortures, beatings and murders are well documented now by survivors of Indian boarding schools in the US, Canada and Australia. All people, when informed, have the responsibility to speak out against injustice and criminal acts, and especially the abuse of children.

As for the opinion editor at ICT, not only is his comment ethically reprehensible, it is no doubt a violation of the Oneida Nation's employee regulations at Oneida Nation Human Resources which prohibit employees from attacking the public with lewd language and profanity.

Brenda Norrell created Censored News after being censored, then terminated, by Indian Country Today. Norrell has covered Indian country for 29 years, including the 18 years she lived on the Navajo Nation. She is a former writer for Navajo Times and served as a correspondent for AP and USA Today. Now censored by the mainstream media, her articles appear at CounterPunch, Narco News and Sri Lanka Guardian.

Wikileaks: Canada says UN Declaration on Indigenous Rights headed for 'Train Wreck'

US Ambassador in Ottawa:
US and Canada agree Indigenous Rights Declaration headed for 'train-wreck'
Censored News
Photo: UN
In a diplomatic cable marked "sensitive," US Ambassador David Wilkins states that the US and Canada agree that the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples is "ill conceived and is headed for a train-wreck."
It was written five weeks after the United Nations adopted the Declaration.
When the United Nations adopted the UN Declaration, the US, Canada, New Zealand and Australia were the four countries that voted against it. Although the four countries later took action on it, the US and Canada gave only lip service and did not sign on to it, or fully endorse it.
The Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council rejected the limited support of the United States.
"In the first paragraph of the 'support' statement they make it is clear that the Declaration is in no way a legal document, nor are they bound by it," the council said in a statement.
"The Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council calls upon the United States of America to adopt the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples without inserting unilateral qualifications, limitations, and abrogations that clearly stand in violation to internationally binding treaties, international treaty law, and international human rights laws and standards."
The United Nations said that UN Member States have the responsibility to uphold the human rights principles outlined in the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, adding that violations of the fundamental rights of those communities persist.
“First and foremost, the nation Member States of the United Nations are to take the initial obligation to begin to adopt policies and legislation … to maintain consistence with the human rights standards that are embraced in the declaration,” said Dalee Sambo Dorough, a member of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, at a press conference at UN Headquarters on May 18, 2011.
She said the direct and often brutal violations of the basic rights of indigenous people in every region of the world continue, even in areas where success had been achieved, such as in Canada where an agreement over land use between the aboriginal communities in Nunavut has faced implementation hitches.
“The reality of the UN declaration is that the rights of indigenous people did not arise out of the goodwill of States,” said Ms. Dorough.
“Rather, it is because of the entire history of exploitation, colonization, as well as the full range of human rights violations that the indigenous community has pressed the UN to open its doors in order to for us to take our rightful place not only in the context of the human rights pillar of the UN, but also in the environment, as well as the peace and security pillar,” she told reporters on the sidelines of deliberations in the two-week Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
The forum is aimed at advancing the rights of the estimated 370 million indigenous people worldwide. More than 1,300 delegates are participating.
The rights stated in the UN Declaration includes Indigenous Peoples' "rights to their lands, territories and resources" and states that no relocation can occur without "free, prior and informed consent." The rights stated include Indigenous Peoples rights to their cultural, intellectual, religious and spiritual property and their right to free, prior and informed consent.
Wikileaks diplomatic cables released so far reveal how the United States ambassadors in Canada and Iceland worked against passage and implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Wikileaks cable 2007:
According to Paul Gibbard, Director of the Office of Aboriginal and Circumpolar Affairs at the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Canada shares our views that the OAS Declaration is ill-conceived and is headed for a "train-wreck." Gibbard said that Canada had a number of concerns with the UN text, and that the OAS resolution proposes even larger commitments. Canada sees the negotiations process as requiring a considerable amount of work, but does not anticipate an eventual consensus, which will be very negative for the OAS as an institution. The GOC will suggest to OAS member states that, as the process is not likely to yield a successful outcome, the best approach would be to back up from the negotiations and look instead closely at the underlying issues, seeking areas where there may be consensus.
¶2. (SBU) Gibbard added that the GOC will be supportive of our proposed "year of action" in principle, but expressed concern that it could lead to commitments that Canada would prefer to avoid. He said that Working Group Chairman Cuadros had been pushing for a two-track process in which the U.S. and Canada would fund projects instead of participating in negotiations. He expressed concern that our proposal could also go in this direction but insisted that the GOC would not be in a position to provide funding unless the OAS makes a clear statement that indigenous rights and issues are a key priority. Gibbard nonetheless promised to consult internally on our proposal and get back to us. In general, he said, Canada sees the potential to work together -- as long as there are no direct fiscal implications.
Note: GOC=Government of Canada
Also see:
Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council rejects US limited support:
WIKILEAKS: US says Iceland's support of UN Indigenous Declaration is an 'impediment' to US relations:
Adopted by the General Assembly 13 September 2007
The Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples was adopted by the General Assembly on Thursday September 13, by a majority of 144 states in favour, 4 votes against (Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States) and 11 abstentions (Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burundi, Colombia, Georgia, Kenya, Nigeria, Russian Federation, Samoa and Ukraine). More:
UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (text)

Wikileaks revelations shed light on Arctic carve-up

By Greenpeace
Greenpeace warns growing military tension poses threat to peace. New revelations by the whistle-blowing website Wikileaks show how the scramble for resources in the Arctic is sparking military tension in the region – with NATO sources worried about the potential for armed conflict between the alliance and Russia.
The release of previously unpublished US embassy cables also shows the extent to which Russia is maneuvering to claim ownership over huge swathes of the Arctic, with one senior Moscow source revealing that a Russian explorer’s famous submarine expedition to plant a flag on the seabed beneath the North Pole was ordered by Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party. One cable details the lengths to which the U.S. is going to carve out a strong position in Greenland, and the concerns Washington has over Chinese maneuvering on the Danish autonomous island. Read more ...

Aboriginal Museum forced to display evidence of Canadian Genocide

The Wall of Holocaust Denial Begins to Topple:
Aboriginal Museum is Forced to Display Evidence of the Canadian Genocide
By Hidden from History
An Update, with thanks to Jim Windle of Teka News
Brampton, Ontario, May 13, 2011
For the first time in Canadian history, a public museum will exhibit evidence which makes reference to overtly genocidal policies by both the churches and government of Canada towards indigenous people, including in the deadly Indian residential schools.
Relying primarily on the research gathered by Rev. Kevin Annett in his book Hidden No Longer: Genocide in Canada, Past and Present (2010,, the aboriginal advisory committee of the new Peel Region Heritage Museum in Brampton, Ontario convinced the Museum designers, Vilnis Cultural Design Works, to establish a display that shows that genocide, according to the United Nations’ definition of the crime, did occur in the Indian residential school system.
The schools were established and run jointly by the Vatican and the Crown of England in 1834, and continued until 1996. According to government statistics, nearly half of the 150,000 children in these schools died because of treatment and conditions there.
The decision to document this genocide in the new Peel Region Museum was forced by the Advisory committee’s chair, Allan Jamieson of the Haudenosaunee Nation, who faced major opposition from Vilnis to include the term “genocide” in the Museum displays.
"We want to tell our story about what happened to our people, and is still happening in Canada, and we want Canadians and others to learn about it, and we don't want to sugar coat it” said Jamieson to Teka News this week.
“As victims of this genocide, we have a right to characterize for ourselves how we have been, and still are mistreated. The committee's work does not include having to convince the Vilnis team of genocide in Canada ... It is truly tiring and demeaning to have to try to convince learned people about accurate history.”
Allan Jamieson, who has consulted Rev. Annett in the past, has also learned that Canadian government agencies make up about one third of Vilnis' business. Their list of clients includes companies that also benefit from the dispossession of First Nations lands including a home builders association, a mining association, and a pulp and paper company.
Until now, not a single Canadian Museum has displayed the evidence of the massive mortality level in Indian residential schools or of their deliberate murder and crimes, documented in archived letters and testimonies published by Rev. Annett since 1998.
“It’s an incredible breakthrough” commented Rev. Annett today in London, England, where he is working with an International Tribunal to bring charges against Canada and its churches for genocide.
“Thanks to the persistence of Allan Jamieson and his people, the truth of crimes against humanity in Canada is finally being formally acknowledged, and taught to the next generation. The walls of denial are tumbling, and a huge leap has now been made towards bringing those responsible to justice.”
The London-based International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State (ITCCS) has been endorsed by over thirty organizations, including survivors of child abuse in nine nations, as well as seven different indigenous nations across Canada.
For more information: and - information from the files of Teka News, Brantford, Ontario, Vol. 42, issue 19, May 11, 2011
See the evidence of Genocide in Canada at and on the website of The International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State at

SONORAN DESERT: New Satellite-Based Migrant Rescue Initiative


President Obama has declared that the border is safer now than it has been for a long, long time. For whom? Certainly not for migrants in our deserts. May 23 is the 10th anniversary of the deaths of fourteen migrants in one day, a story that was set to prose in The Devil’s Highway by Luis Urrea. What was not memorialized in his book was the continuing efforts of faith based groups, human rights activists, and members of the general public to mitigate the damage caused by this and previous administrations under the guise of national security, stabilization of labor, and efforts to reduce the amount of noise on the border.

Groups have set up water stations. Rescue beacons were invented and deployed by the Border Patrol. Volunteer paramedics were sought among the ranks of the Border Patrol. Groups set out nearly daily to find migrants in distress. Warning posters, public service announcements, and many other things have been tried. All are successful to some extent.

Still, though, the numbers of dead migrants continue to rise. Over the last decade, more than 2,000 migrants are known to have died just in Arizona according to county medical examiner data. Last year, we counted more than 250 deaths just in southern Arizona. When that is held up to the light of the fact that far fewer migrants are crossing, we can see that the rate of migrant deaths has increased dramatically.

The US has three strategies for migrants. The first is to make it physically difficult to cross the border. The results of this strategy is to destroy large areas of the environment and to encourage migrants to walk in more difficult terrain which leads predictably to more deaths. The second is to make it very expensive. This drives up the cost of the coyotes (human smugglers) and, in turn, systematically transfers billions of dollars into the hands of the cartels. More migrants predictably die when they are turned into commodities in this way. Finally, the strategy is to push migrants to the margins of the desert. In southern Arizona, this means that the migrants walk farther and farther each year from the safer lower parts of the valleys into the more corrugated, difficult terrains. This leads predictably to more deaths.

Many of us have worked together for more than six years to promote increased cell phone coverage, especially 911 emergency call capabilities. It turns out that more than half of all of the Border Patrol rescues are self-initiated by migrants using cell phones to call when they are in distress. The administration has feigned interest in working with us and with Pima County Government on increasing the scope of 911 cell coverage. But, that, too, has come to a halt. We can only conclude that after a decade of trying to save lives and to work cooperatively with the government that the death of migrants is an intentional element of the Department of Homeland Security’s strategy to deter migration.

A few of us have begun a new migrant safety initiative called Rescatame! which means Rescue Me. We've made it aware than anyone, anywhere can purchase a satellite based personal location beacon and use it to save lives. A handful of the small cellphone sized devices are being circulated in Altar, Sonora, Mexico to be used by persons who guide migrants in the desert. Older women in the community who are active in their congregation, who volunteer in the migrant shelter in Altar, and who know the young men who guide groups in the desert are distributing the devices with the moral instructions to use them only in an emergency but to definitely use them in an emergency. When a guide returns, he turns in the device, and it is re-issued to the next person/group going. In an emergency, the guide can activate the device which finds out where it is by using GPS. The PLB then transmits a signal to a NOAA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellite. That satellite beams the rescue signal and the location of the migrants to a national office where someone initiates a search and rescue mission. In most cases, it is the nearest county sheriff’s office that is the responding authority. This works, then, like a satellite-based 911 system that can be used anywhere in the desert regardless of whether or not there is cell phone coverage. More about these devices can be found at They are part of an international 406 Rescue System It is our hope that one arm of the government will finally do what another has refused to do: save lives.

For more information, you can:
Contact Rev. Robin Hoover, Ph.D. at 520-360-7818
Go to
Watch a YouTube video on website.

Long Walk 3 Ho Chunk, Wisconsin

Photos by Longest Walk 3 reversing diabetes, northern route, published at Censored News. Thank you!
(Sat., May 14, 2011) from northern route: WE NEED YOUR HELP! "We made it to Mole Lake Casino today. We are looking for a van or trailer or both. Our driver for the luggage and gear went home this morning. He help us out as much as he could and we are honored to have him on the route with us. Be well Mark Blue. Safe travel brother until next time. Call 503-515-6239 or 503-310-0400 or maybe help haul our gear to our next stop, thanks Chris F."
New video posted: Long Walk 3 northern route at Cass Lake, Minn:
LongestWalk Northern Route is also on Facebook, with more photos and updates.

Owe Aku at UN: Sacred Water, Sacred Earth Film Fest, May 19, 2011


All are invited to participate in this event which includes the presentation of three short films, dialogue on the condition of sacred water, earth and health, and presentations by Indigenous activists and our allies regarding environmental impacts caused by mining corporations to the Lakota Oyate and all human beings, water, air, land, and sacred life.

This is not an INDIGENOUS issue - it's everyone's issue. We need your voice, your energy, your thoughts.

Thursday May 19th, 2011 @ 7:00 p.m., Bluestockings Book Store, 172 Allen Street, 212-777-6028
They are 1 block south of the F train’s 2nd Avenue stop and just 5 blocks from the JMZ-line’s Essex / Delancey Street stop. From the United Nations walk to 50th Street & 2nd Avenue. Take the M15 Bus and get off at East Houston & Allen Street. Ask the Bus Driver to say "when." It's about a 20 minute ride through the East side and a very good way to see that part of the City.
Owe Aku International Justice Project
Kent Lebsock or Debra White Plume

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