Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

October 22, 2018

Lakota Jean Roach's Speech in Paris


By Christine Prat
Censored News
Recorded on October 13, 2018
Published on October 22, 2018

The 38th Annual Day of Solidarity with Indigenous Peoples, organized in Paris by the French Committee for Solidarity with Indians of the Americas, CSIA, celebrated over five centuries of struggles against colonialism, the 50th Anniversary of the AIM and the 40th Anniversary of the CSIA.
Jean Roach was one of the speakers representing AIM. She talked about the role of women in the struggle, Wounded Knee, the Protection of Water and Earth, and called for Leonard Peltier's release from prison.
Below is the transcript of the speech she delivered on October 13th, 2018.
Christine Prat

"My name is Jean Roach, I am from the Lakota Nation. I live near the Black Hills, in South Dakota. I'd like to thank everybody for coming and be interested in our fights.
I represent a man, Leonard Peltier, who has been in prison for 43 years, also a part of the colonization process.
When our families are being attacked, whether it was in the 1700's or in the 1970's, the women have to take a stand too. Our children have been adopted out and taken to boarding schools, being killed, murdered. Our men have been taken to prison, or killed, or both. Since the first contact, we have had many casualties.

My Nation is the Miniconjou. My people were massacred at Wounded Knee [December 29th 1890]. Part of the role of the women… So, people try to call us activists or militants, but we are just mothers and grandmothers. We protect our next generations, those are our actions right now, and we probably carry the DNA of our ancestors that were murdered. So, when we talk about Leonard Peltier, we should relate to the fact that his grandfather was one of the Dakota 38 [38 men hanged on Lincoln orders in Mankato, Minnesota, on December 26th, 1862]. To our generations, Leonard represents the United States manipulations.
Some people call them political prisoners, but we are just all Water Protectors. At Standing Rock, they were attacked based on their beliefs, our beliefs of protection of the water. And they are political prisoners too.
Leonard Peltier has been a prisoner, as I said, for 43 years. He is the longest held political prisoner in the world. All we are asking for is justice. And the story should be told and not forgotten. We would like the international world to know that we suffer and we still have a prisoner inside the prison. And many more. Until he's free, our Nations are not free.
I have a lot of documentation, on this I am talking about. I urge everybody to take interest in Leonard Peltier. And I congratulate all the water protectors and Earth protectors. Thank you."

French version:


Anonymous said...

Great speech Jean Roach - we are proud of you at home!

Wanda Peacock, Rapid City, SD

Unknown said...