August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Tohono O'odham Protest Against Border Wall and Israeli Spy Towers on Arizona Border

Ofelia Rivas protesting Trump's border wall
Tohono O'odham protested the border wall being constructed in the
fragile Sonoran Desert on Saturday, and the Israeli spy towers now
targeting the Tohono O'odham Naiton.
Photos copyright Ofelia Rivas.

(Photo above) U.S. military surveillance helicopter
over Gu-Vo community this morning on Tohono O'odham Nation. Below: in Gu-Vo community today.

Trump's Border Wall is Death to Endangered Species and Sacred Places

Photos by Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham
Article by Brenda Norrell
Censored News copyright
Sat., Aug. 31, 2019

AJO, Arizona -- As Trump's bulldozers destroy the pristine Sonoran Desert at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument nearby, Tohono O'odham and Arizona residents are protesting the inhumane destruction.

Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham who lives on the border, told Censored News, "Beautiful day in the O'odham homeland, united group of people came to be a voice for the lands and  nature against genocidal policies of an inhumane government system attacking all life."
"The Society of these stolen lands should legally charge these inhumane crimes against this disgraceful person."
"The group will continue to be a voice for the honor of the bees, the endangered sacred animals, plants and the entire land and people," Rivas said.

All endangered species laws and all laws protecting sacred Native American places have been smashed. The border wall construction is already using a vast amount of water in the desert here for concrete.
These defenders are also protesting the Israeli spy towers now targeting the Tohono O'odham Nation. The Israeli defense contractor Elbit Systems plans to construct these spy towers and destroy sacred burial places and ceremonial places on the Tohono O'odham Nation. The tribal government approved these spy towers in March, but Gu-Vo District continues to oppose this oppression and destruction. Elbit already carries out Apartheid security in Palestine.

Ofelia Rivas is the founder of O'odham Voice against the Wall, and has spent her life battling the abuses of the U.S. Border Patrol. Ofelia lives on the border on the Tohono O'odham Nation and is a voice for human rights.
Donate to Ofelia on her website, for gas funds for her work, at:

Photos copyright Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham.
Censored News
May not be used without permission.

More: Trump's bulldozers destroying the pristine Sonoran Desert and Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument! Photos and video:

A News Revolution: Stop the lies. Stop the thieves. Stop the fear.

Censored News photos through the years: Indigenous Peoples Summit on Tohono O'odham Nation, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Jamaica, Havasupai Opposed to Uranium Gathering, AIM West Conference, and Zapatistas in Sonora, Mexico. Photos by Brenda Norrell

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

We need a news revolution: 'Stop the lies. Stop the thieves. Stop the fear. Tell the truth. Uphold honor and integrity.'
One aspect of good journalism is to tell both sides of the story. However, this has degenerated into mainstream articles full of lies. If a person is quoted telling lies, in opposition to facts, the reporter should make it clear that the person is lying.
Along with stopping the lies, the media with means should halt the illegal sale and reproduction of their articles by plagiarizers and re-writers, especially on Facebook.
This theft for profit ultimately leads to money in the pockets of thieves, and not enough money to send reporters out on news stories.

The thieves make money by way of posting stolen articles and stolen photos along with their advertising, clickbait, Adwords, and other schemes.
Being present is vital to good journalism and truth. Being present is also expensive. Travel is very expensive. Many reporters pay expenses out of their own pockets, then the thieves turn a profit.

Along with this, those reporters who stay home and steal other reporters and photographers work should come clean and stop taking paychecks for theft and deception.
Some reporters have spent their entire lives sitting home and doing this. They are deceiving their readers.

When it comes to fear, publishers and editors seem to be full of this. Some newsrooms are full of fear. Publishers and editors are afraid of lawsuits, afraid of the public, and especially afraid of politicians, both national and local politicians.

Publishers and editors are also afraid of going broke and are not fearless enough to either just let it rip and tell the truth, and go down with honor, or to take effective means to survive. The latter includes filing lawsuits against the thieves on Facebook, and elsewhere on the Internet, which make it impossible for them to turn a profit.

And of course, everyone seems to be afraid of their bosses, owners, and handlers. Fear is everywhere in the news, even in alternative news.
This fear is apparent in the lack of coverage of Palestine, and in the cases where elected tribal governments violate the rights of Native people.

In Indian Country, the most censored are the people who live on the land and fight corporations and harmful development. This includes uranium, copper and coal mining and fracking.

If you examine national news articles, you will find most promote corporate interests over the rights of Indigenous Peoples. They do this by downplaying or ignoring altogether Native comments.
Eventually, news writers and publishers will have to take back their content.
Ultimately, reporters will have to figure out that they have to be present on news stories to report accurately and stop the deception.

Someday, once again, the profits must go to those who are out there somewhere covering the news, and the publishers and editors who make it possible.

Reading and writing are fundamental. They are great arts to be celebrated and enjoyed. Both are endangered by the ease of the Internet -- with the convenience of quick headlines, and the ease of videos. Now, too often reading news articles is replaced by reading headlines and snippets. The hard work of writing news articles is often replaced with the ease of video.

The best ingredient for good journalism is to love what you do, and do it with passion.
This is not the same as having fun. It can be fun at times, but most often it is very hard work. Many journalists have sacrificed their lives for truth.
Others get up everyday and do the work, whether they are paid for it or not.

In the end, all you are responsible for doing, is the best job you can.
Thanks for helping move the process of a news revolution along by not sharing the work of thieves. Thanks for reading and sharing authentic news.

About the author and Censored News

Brenda Norrell is the publisher of Censored News, a collective of writers, photographers and broadcasters. Norrell has been a journalist in Indian Country for 37 years.

She began as a reporter at Navajo Times in 1982, during the 18 years that she lived on the Navajo Nation. She also worked as a news stringer for The Associated Press, USA Today, and other publications on the Navajo Nation. She served as a news stringer for Lakota Times. After working as a longtime staff reporter for Indian Country Today in the Southwest, she was censored and terminated in 2006. She began Censored News to share those stories which were being censored.

Censored News provided live coverage of the Zapatistas in Mexico; the five-month Longest Walk northern route in 2008; AIM West Conferences; the Mother Earth Conference in Bolivia; the UN Climate Conference in Cancun and the hearing of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, focused on Standing Rock and the US Mexico border, held in Jamaica in May of 2019.

Censored News aired live broadcasts, with Govinda at Earthcycles, from the Leonard Peltier Indigenous Peoples and Boarding Schools Summits in Oneida, Wisconsin; the U.S. Mexico border; and gatherings on the lands of the Western Shoshone, Dine', Tohono O'odham, Havasupai and Acoma Pueblo. With translators, Censored News has shared breaking news of Indigenous Peoples and human rights around the world.

Censored News has no ads, grants or revenues.

Hopi and Japanese -- 'Water is alive! It has intelligence!'

Hotevilla sping water

Crystals formed from water of a Hotevilla spring and Hotevilla well on the Hopi Nation. "When a complete geometric crystal is formed, water is in alignment with nature and the phenomenon we call life. The crystals do not form in water that has been polluted by the results of our failure to remember the laws of nature.” From The Hidden Messages in Water by Dr. Masuru Emoto. Photos copyright by Masaru Emoto.
Water crystal from polluted water

Dr. Masuru Emoto, Becky Masayesva, and Vernon Masayesva at the April 28, 2004 event featuring Dr. Emoto’s talk.
Photo: Water crystal responding to positive words. 
Hopi and Japanese gathered on Hopi land to share this truth in 2004: Water has intelligence and responds to positive and negative words.
Water is alive

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
On Hopi land in 2004, Vernon Masayesva, executive director of Black Mesa Trust, and researcher Dr. Masaru Emoto, chief of the Hado Institute in Tokyo, spoke at the Hopi Veterans Center and revealed the secrets and science of the intelligence of water.
During the Hisot Navoti (Knowledge of Ancestors) Masayesva showed amazing film footage, revealing startling transformations in water crystals when exposed to music and written words. Emoto’s photographs reveal water crystals, under high magnification, have drastically different forms from different water sources. Further, Emoto shows that water changes its expression as a result of human actions.

When water is exposed to the music of Mozart and Beethoven, crystals expand and become more beautiful. These crystals resemble diamonds, with flower buds blossoming on their points, as the music plays. Emoto explains that water carries and responds to the vibrations of music. He reveals even more amazing research, showing water responds to the written word.

When clear tubes of water are placed over positive and negative words, the structure of water crystals change. Water crystals increase in beauty when placed over the word “peace,” but are transformed to dark and ugly crystals when placed over the word “war.”

When water is placed over the word “let’s,” the crystals expand and increase in beauty. However, when water is placed over the word “must,” the crystals become ugly with a dark green center. Emoto says water is letting us realize the hidden power of words.

During the gathering for the defense of pure water, Jerry Honawa, Hopi elder, said, “Water has intelligence.”

Masayesva said, “If you are happy, you will have happy crystals; if you are angry, you will have angry crystals.” Masayesva also shared the history of the Hopi people, revealing their destiny intertwined with the earth and its mysteries.

“According to Hopi, long ago there was nothing but water from the beginning of time. This is what we call the First World of Hopi. “Life was created from water, from the land, from the sun.” When life was first created, it was beautiful, a perfect circle. On Hopiland today there are areas of perfect seashells, proof that this land was once underwater as Hopi are told. There are perfect fossils here, he said.

“Where does coal come from? It comes from plants. Everywhere you go, you see dinosaur tracks. This must have been a beautiful place at one time.”

In the First World, there was balance, harmony and peace. This balance and harmony, however, was destroyed in the Third World because of man and his greed. The ancestors began searching for a safe place to begin a new life. Bird was sent out and returned with news of this place.

“Through the bamboo, they entered the new land,” Masayesva said. “It is a metaphor, we don’t really know, but we came from somewhere where there was bamboo.” When the people arrived in this new land, they thought they had left evil behind them. But after a child died, they realized that evil had come with them. Those with the two hearts had come. “Evil is necessary to understand what good truly is,” Masayesva said.

The people knew they had to learn from the destruction of the Third World and not return to those ways. They wanted to create a new way of life. The Hopi people were not led by politicians, they were led by priests, often the poorest man in the village who denied himself everything for the benefit of his children.

In this new place they found a man who grew beautiful corn. It was Ma’sau, guardian of the land. Ma’sau said it is a harsh land, but if the people were willing to live Ma’sau’s way of life, they could stay here.

Ma’sau told the people, “If you follow this way of life, you can stay here forever.” Ma’sau showed the people corn, a gourd of water and planting stick. “He said if you decide to stay here you must help me take care of this land, then you can stay.”

Ma’sau told them that others are coming. “They will claim everything when they come, even the oceans, the air and the stars.” Ma’sau told the Hopi people to migrate to the four corners of the world, then return here to Black Mesa. The gourd to carry water was also a revelation, showing that water here is not infinite, it is limited.

Masayesva said the colors of the corn represent the colors of all mankind, yellow, purple, red and white. The sweet corn also represents the ancestors and the purple the heavens. Corn, too, gave Hopi a new way of life, and meant that the people no longer had to search for food every day, leaving them free for other things.

The planting stick represents tools or technology, which can be used for good or for destruction. There was a time when smallpox nearly eliminated the Hopi people, with only 300 Hopi surviving, Masayesva said technology can prevent and cure illness today, but it threatens to end humankind with the production of nuclear bombs. Nuclear power and travel to distant planets have resulted in dangerous “god-like powers.”

The waters–aquifers, springs, lakes, rivers, oceans and glaciers– work in harmony to sustain life. Hopi believe the aquifers breathe, breathe in rain and snow and breathe it out. The springs are the breathing holes. Humankind is a participant in water-life; mankind’s thoughts influence whether the rain and snow comes.

Of the world’s water today, Masayesva said 97 percent is seawater and 2 percent is bound in glaciers. Only1 percent is available for drinking.

However, America is a nation of waste. “We are a throwaway society. We think we are never going to run out of anything.”

Masayesva said the people must honor their trust as guardians of the water and land.

“If we don’t, we will break the circle.”

Watch as water changes shape, responding to words of love and words of hate. From Dr. Emoto:


In the news: The Faces of Water: Black Mesa Trust hosts Japanese researcher

FLAGSTAFF, (Ariz.), May 25, 2004—Black Mesa Trust hosted a well-attended presentation by Dr. Masaru Emoto from Japan on April 28 at Cline Library at Northern Arizona University. The evening began at 7 p.m. with a Hopi welcome song, and a prayer offered by Hopi elder Jerry Honawa.

Dr. Emoto talked about his work with water crystals over the past decade. He has discovered that water is directly affected by human words, thoughts, and actions, and that water will show those effects when it is frozen into ice. Water exposed to Classical music, words of gratitude, or prayers, will form beautiful, complete crystals. Water exposed to negative words, raucous music, or anger, either will not crystallize at all or will form incomplete or distorted crystals. Dr. Emoto illustrated his talk with slides of water crystals formed when water from different sources was frozen under various conditions.

At the end of the evening Black Mesa Trust Board member Rueben Saufkie presented Dr. Emoto with a piece of Hopi overlay jewelry, a gift from the Water Clan.

“We were honored to host Dr. Emoto,” said Black Mesa Trust Executive Director Vernon Masayesva. “His work helps to show how critical it is to preserve our water resources and to use them properly. What Dr. Emoto has discovered about water is perfectly in keeping with what our Hopi elders have told us all along.”

This evening presentation followed the April 26 Black Mesa Trust Honoring Water Reception and Benefit Auction held at the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff from 6:30-9:30 p.m.

R. Carlos Nakai played solo flute, and the Moencopi Elderly Program prepared and donated traditional Hopi foods, including patupsuki (bean and hominy stew), somiviki (sweetened blue corn meal wrapped in corn husks), piki, roasted parched corn; and hohoisi (traditional tea), as well as tamales.

Volunteer assistance was provided by Anna Masayesva, and donors of art for the auction included Winter Sun, Northland Publishing, Leonard Selestewa, Babbitt’s Backcountry, Tsakurshovi, and R. Carlos Nakai. Black Mesa Trust is a grassroots organization dedicated to preserving the N-aquifer for future generations of Hopi and Navajo children.

The Trust is planning its 3rd Annual Water Fair on Hopi for October, and in September the Trust will host a water visioning workshop for tribal and religious leaders of the Colorado Plateau tribes.

Organizations supporting Black Mesa Trust include Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, Oxfam America, WaterKeeper Alliance, Environment Now, Grand Canyon Trust, Arizona Ethnobotanical Research Association, Indigenous Water Institute, Sacred Land Film Project, Earth Island Institute, Wild Angels, Seventh Generation and the law firms of Shearman and Sterling and The Shanker Law Firm.

For more information about Black Mesa Trust, visit

Article copyright Brenda Norrell, Censored News

Censored News copyright

All content at Censored News is copyrighted by the creator of the work, and may not be used for any reason without written permission. This includes news, books, films, dissertations, grants, reports, pamphlets, and any other purpose.