By Huucii Idax-gish Nuxbicii Xaagish
Feb, 12, 2014
GRAND FORKS, North Dakota -- North Dakotans protested fracking and the widespread destruction by the oil and gas industry at the Bakken Three Forks Shale Oil Conference being held Feb. 10--12.
Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara were among those protesting outside the expo. Their protest signs said, "You can't unfrack ecosystems," and "Man belongs to earth, earth doesn't belong to man."
Another sign warned, "Hide yo kids, hide yo wife," referring to the widespread violence and crime that the oil and gas man camps have brought to the communities, including those of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara, also known as The Three Affiliated Tribes and Fort Berthold.
Photographer Huucii Idax-gish Nuxbicii Xaagish said, "Waaxtaanii'shi'sh... waaxtaanii'shi're! Rally for the Next Generations during the Oil conference at Alerus Center, Grand Forks, ND. Coming together, taking a stand, raising awareness. Standing up against Fracking and the destruction of our mother earth. Withstanding freezing temperatures to raise awareness and bring our people together to fight the good fight for our future generations."
The protests come as a murder probe centers around the oil and gas business associates of Three Affiliated Chairman Tex Hall. One associate was murdered, another missing, and an informant said Hall was also targeted to be murdered by the business partner.
Meanwhile, a resolution has been created for the Three Affiliated Business Council to consider on Thursday, calling for the suspension of Hall. The resolution states Hall illegally profited from the oil and gas business of Blackwater Oil Field Services. Hall also created his own company, Maheshu Energy, to profit from the oil and gas industry on tribal land.
As tribal members struggled to protect the land, air and water, Hall pushed for extensive oil and gas leasing, and argued in favor of fracking before a Congressional committee.
Responding to the media, Hall said he has cooperated with investigators and is not involved with gangs.
Read more: Tex Hall: Blood Oil and the Murder Probe