August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Thursday, March 8, 2018

AIM WEST Liberation Day Honors Heroes -- from Pine Ridge to Black Panthers

Liberation Day Honors Heroes and Legends, from Pine Ridge to Black Panthers 

By Tony Gonzales

AIM West
Photos by Louie Gutierrez, of San Francisco's La Reyna Bakery
The Longest Walk '78 photo by Ilka Hartmann.
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SAN FRANCISCO --- We had a terrific ‘big time’ during “Liberation Day” 2/27/18 with Madonna Thunder Hawk, Lakota, Sarah James, Arctic Village, Alaska, Jessie Riddle, Pit River, California, and John Iverson, Annishinabe, participating as our special guests!
We had roll-call, too, and read the names of those 65 people who died or were killed during the ‘Reign of Terror’ (1973-76) as absent.
Mr. Emory Douglas, former Black Panther Minister of Culture, artist/activist, was also present in solidarity, and with a recent poster drawing of Leonard Peltier he sells with half proceeds toward the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee!
See pictures and voices of solidarity below. Aho! All my relations!

Thank you!
Antonio Gonzales

Wall of Women Opposing Kinder Morgan -- Stand With Them in Vancouver March 10, 2018

A WALL OF WOMEN AGAINST KINDER MORGAN. On March 10, STAND WITH THEM and Coastal Salish Spiritual Leaders in Vancouver BC. Photograph of "Wall of Women" at Ambleside Park in West Vancouver.
Photo by Zack Embree for Greenpeace
The moment to stop the dangerous Kinder Morgan pipeline and tanker project is upon us. 
Texas oil giant Kinder Morgan has been threatening to destroy our lands, waters, culture and spirit by poisoning our territory, and wrecking the climate that sustains us all, with its dangerous Trans Mountain pipeline.
Since this pipeline was first conceived, Tsleil-Waututh members have been protecting our territory from proposed oil flowing through our lands, and tankers intruding into our Inlet. Now, we are asking you to stand with us in our defence of the lands and waters.  
Our members, spiritual leaders, and youth will be on the land practicing our culture and spirit as we have for time immemorial. We will use our presence to stop Kinder Morgan.
It is time for you to join us and do whatever it takes to stop Kinder Morgan. Join Kwekwecnewtxw and stand with us to Protect the Inlet.
It will take all of us to stop this massive project.  
O’siem and Hay cha qa,
Ta’ah (Amy George), Tsleil-Waututh Elder
Will George, Tsleil-Waututh Member

Standing With Women Defenders On International Women's Day 2018

WECAN International Featured On ABC Good Morning America On International Women's Day
By WECAN International
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Dear Friends and Allies,
We celebrate International Women's Day with you and with women around the world. We ask that you join us today in honoring the women defenders of the land - who put their bodies on the line everyday for human rights, forests, rivers, wildlife, traditional territories, the global climate, and the lives and futures of us all.

In the context of recent reports, which document the murder of 312 defenders in 2017 - the majority tied to land protection - we stand in solidarity and raise the highest call of attention to the remarkable, courageous, and dedicated frontline women who continue their vital work despite violence, threats and assaults.

We can all provide support by amplifying their stories. We must all defend the defenders.

Explore our special International Women's Day newsletter for Women Earth Defenders media and analysis to read and share. To donate in support of WECAN International's ongoing work, please click here.
[READ] A Red Flag on International Women's Day:
Women Land and Rights Defenders Facing Violence
As part of a special week of media highlighting the stories and urgent demands of women defenders - the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network spoke with women experts from Global Witness and Frontline Defenders, to learn more about how women in particular are impacted within the context of the dangerous acceleration of violence against global Earth and rights defenders. 

"The increased exposure that comes with activism pits these women against deep-seated social and cultural norms that expect them to play a passive role in overwhelmingly patriarchal societies, and all of the risks that come with challenging those norms. 
Female land or environmental defenders who we have met have become victims of smear campaigns that attempt to ruin their reputation as 'good women' in an effort to ostracize them from their communities and discredit their activism." 
- Alice Harrison, Senior Campaigner for Global Witness

Read and share the full interview here via Medium! An abridged version is also available via The Ecologist.
Solidarity With Indigenous Women Forest Defenders Rising Against Extractivism In Ecuador
Two years ago today, WECAN International was honored to join our allies on the ground in Ecuador, to march in solidarity with Indigenous women leaders from across the Ecuadorian Amazon, gathered to oppose a new oil contract signed between the Ecuadorian government and a Chinese oil company without the consent of affected Indigenous communities.

TODAY, hundreds of women from seven nationalities, Kichwa, Sápara, Shiwiar, Shuar, Achuar, Andoa, and Waorani, and their allies, united once again in the city of Puyo on International Women's Day, to respond to additional oil auctions announced by Ecuadorian officials last week.
Indigenous women leaders from across the Ecuadorian Amazon march against oil extraction in Puyo -  Photo via Emily Arasim/WECAN International
Their strong, grassroots organizing, led by CONFENIAE and community associations, including Sarayakyu's Kuriñampi and the Sapara's Ashiñawaka, comes even despite countless obstacles, and recent attacks against prominent women leaders.
Among their diverse calls to action are the defense of their Indigenous territories, the rights of women, the rights of nature, health, culture, the protection of traditional practices and resources, and addressing the impacts of climate change.

WECAN International ally Belen Paez (Fundación Pachamama) reported from the march for us on WECAN's Facebook Live today!

WECAN International Featured On ABC Good Morning America On International Women's Day
Along with three other women leaders, Osprey Orielle Lake, Founder and Executive Director of WECAN International, was highlighted by ABC Good Morning America today, as part of International Women's Day.

READ and share - 'Four Brave Women Fighting For Equality On International Women's Day
Women Human Rights And Land Defenders - 
Stories To Uplift And Share
In celebration of International Women's Day - all week this week, the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network has been using social media to amplify the stories and demands of women land defenders across the globe. 

Explore important articles and reports below, and visit the WECAN Women Speak research database to browse a growing collection of additional stories in the 'Women Human Rights and Earth Defenders' section - one of 14 dynamic categories!
We encourage you to share these stories today and everyday, as a part of global efforts to expose injustice and make it clear that allies around the world are watching, and will not stand for continued abuses.
For the Earth and All Generations,
Osprey Orielle Lake 
Founder and Executive Director
Emily Arasim
Communications Coordinator

Women's Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) International

Interior E-mails Reveal Interior Shrinking of Bears Ears was for Oil, Uranium and Sports Hunters

Sports hunters used their connection to fellow hunter Donald Trump, Jr., to lobby for the opening for more of
Bears Ears to hunters. Photo from Interior e-mails.

Interior E-mails Reveal Interior Shrinking of Bears Ears was for Oil, Uranium and Sports Hunters

Interior has land auction scheduled for Bears Ears area land on March 20, 2018, unless it is halted

Article by Brenda Norrell
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The New York Times reports that oil was the reason for the shrinking of Bears Ears. The article also reveals Interior meetings with a uranium company, Energy Fuels Resources, concerning uranium at Bears Ears.
The 20,000 Interior e-mails also reveal the interest in available coal at Grand Staircase Escalante and natural gas at the Canyon of the Ancients.
Further, Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke planned a private dinner with the head of a sportsmen group, Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife, a connection made possible by Donald Trump, Jr., who went hunting with the head of the sportsmen's group in Utah. 
Sportsmen were lobbying the Interior for hunts of the free roaming bison, elk, big horn sheep, cougar, black bear, and more, in the Bears Ears area.
The e-mails also reveal the sarcastic attitude of the head of the Bureau of Reclamation toward Native Americans, as shown below, one of 20,000 e-mails which the New York Times gained access to.
The statements from Native American Nations opposing the shrinkage of Bears Ears and destruction are included in these e-mails.
One e-mail points out how little Zinke knows about Indian Tribes, after Zinke suggested Tribes become corporations.
The e-mails also show motorcyclists contacting the Interior, eager to gain access to back trails.
(Below) Interior Sec. Zinke posted this photo during his visit to Bears Ears, as the Interior prepared to open more areas for exploiters. Hunters contacted Zinke after hunting with Donald Trump Jr, according to e-mails. The Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife continued to support Zinke in November, when Zinke promoted big game hunts in this news release.

New York Times -- Oil was central in decision to shrink Bears Ears, internal e-mails show

(Below) The Bureau of Reclamation's sarcastic comments about Indian Tribes, from E-mails in New York Times article:
Alan Mikkelsen is the Bureau of Reclamation's Deputy Commissioner.
ACCESS Interior E-mails and Documents here:

Shrinking Bears Ears National Monument: Inside the Interior Department Decision
The New York Times filed a Freedom of Information Act request for copies of documents related to the decision by the Trump administration's Department of Interior to shrink two National Monuments, a special category of federal lands intended to protect them from development. The Times received 25,000 pages of documents, but only after it filed a lawsuit in federal court. Here are a few of the key ones.
Objections from Utah Delegation Even Before Bears Ears Created 
Utah State Board of Education Objected Too, Citing Mineral Rights 
Indian Tribe Supported Creating Bears Ears 
An Early Look by Trump Era Interior: Metals and Fossil Fuels at Bears Ears 
Interior Notices Patagonia/Google videos re Bears Ears 
Intervention by Sen Orrin Hatch's Office 
Hatch's Office: This New Boundry Would Exclude "All Known Minerals Conflicts" 
One of Many Efforts by Outdoor Industry to Intervene 
Minerals Review at Bears Ears, Examined Again 
Indian Tribes Call for Bears Ears to be Left as Is 
Hunting Group Intervenes Too, With Photos of Kills  
Interior Department Official Criticizes Indian Tribes 
Formal Review of National Monuments Begins 
Zinke Travels to Utah, Discusses Concerns with State Officials 
Zinke Schedule to Visit Bears Ears 
More Questions about Mines and Impact of National Monuments 
Staff Report on Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument 
Coal Potential at Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument 
Staff Report on Bears Ears  
Current and Former National Park Service Employees Voice Their Opinion p.138
White House Decides to Keep Interior Memo Justifying Move to Shrink Monuments Private 
"To be remembered" National Wildlife Federation 
Natural Gas Production at Canyons of the Ancients 
FYI to Interior Bosses: Outside Magazine on National Monuments Debate 
Energy Fuels Resources Meeting Details  
Indian Tribes Repeat Support for Maintaining Monument 
Motorcyclists Welcome Access to More Federal Lands  

Below: Zinke's private dinner with sports hunter organization's head, after hunting with Donald Trump, Jr. in Utah.

Read more:
Donald Trump Jr. and his Utah hunter buddy, all part of the shrinking of Bears Ears for the exploiters.

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