Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights 2020

Monday, June 1, 2020

Desecration of Ali Jegk, Tohono O'odham Nation, underway by U.S. Israeli spy towers

Photo by Greg Nez
Photo by Ofelia Rivas
Desecration of Veju'pan in Ali Jegk (Little Clearing) Community
on the Tohono O'odham Nation
Photos by Ofelia Rivas and Greg Nez, Tohono O'odham, copyright

Cactus destroyed and dead. Photo by Ofelia Rivas.

Photo by Ofelia Rivas

Photo by Ofelia Rivas

Protected Ironwood destroyed. Photo by Ofelia Rivas.

Desecration of Ali Jegk, Tohono O'odham Nation, underway by U.S. Israeli spy towers

Photos by Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham
Article by Brenda Norrell
copyright Censored News

ALI JEGK, Tohono O'odham Nation -- The destruction of sacred land is underway here in Ali Jegk (Little Clearing) community on the Tohono Oodham Nation, as the land and plants are being destroyed for the integrated fixed towers, spy towers, that were authorized by the U.S. Homeland Security and Tohono O'odham Nation elected government.

Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham said today, "The destruction of our mountain is yet another deliberate attempt to dismantle the hundreds of thousands of cultural connections to our lands. Indigenous peoples throughout the world have survived as the O'odham have."

"The mountains scape and landscape is forever altered to continue to try and erase who we are as a people. They have cut down trees and plants to show their destructive cultureless society. The powerful mountain is bearing this painful wound for the unnecessary erratic whims of deranged spoiled elitists that so-called americans have set loose upon Turtle Island. We, the people of understanding, people of wisdom, people of conscious request your support and prayer offerings," Rivas said.

"Ve'jup'an our little brother will survive."

Traditional O'odham have fought the destruction of this sacred land and its life forms. The technology will allow the U.S. Border Patrol agents to continue stalking O'odham women and elderly, by way of cameras which will be viewed on U.S. Border Patrol agents laptops. Already, U.S. Border Patrol agents harass, abuse and stalk O'odham on their homeland.

"The mountain holds human remains of our people and also places of our cultural practices (medicine bundles) home and home of the ceremonial deer and bighorn sheep and mountain tortoises that are protected under the Endangered Species Act," Gu Vo District said in its resolution opposing the spy towers.

The U.S. Homeland Security contract was granted to Elbit Systems, the defense contractor in Israel responsible for Apartheid security and human rights abuses in Palestine. The U.S. contract was granted during the Obama administration and continued during the Trump administration. It was approved by the Tohono O'odham Nation elected government in the spring of 2019.

The Gu-Vo District opposed this destruction of their ceremonial place and burial places from the beginning.

Gu-Vo, in the westernmost district of the Tohono O'odham Nation, told the U.S., "The Gu-Vo District opposes these proposed tower sites to protect cultural sites on the holy mountain now called the Ajo Mountain Range. The mountain holds human remains of our people and also places of our cultural practices (medicine bundles) home and home of the ceremonial deer and bighorn sheep and mountain tortoises that are protected under the Endangered Species Act."

"The United States government military forces, the border patrol, have not been forthcoming with impact information, such as health effects and have deliberately misinformed the people regarding the immediate environmental impacts such as the roads they will build on the mountain and installation of electrical power lines to the sites as well as that these proposed tower sites will have a 25-year or longer impact on the mountain, the animal and plant life and the O'odham lives."

"The Gu-Vo District communities landscape have already been greatly impacted by numerous unauthorized roads and destruction of our mountains and hills of great significance to the O'odham way of life. Our future generations will face more restrictions to live on our original lands as our rights as original Indigenous peoples continue to deteriorate."

"These U.S. proposed towers also are not on the border but in our communities and on the border of the Tohono O'odham Nation reiterating discrimination and deliberate attack on the O'odham," said Gu-Vo District.

Above: Targeted sites for Elbit spy towers on Tohono O'odham Nation

Above and below: Elbit spy towers in Arizona

The Trump administration has waived all environmental laws, and laws protecting sacred places. The waivers cast aside these laws:

The National Environmental Policy Act
The Endangered Species Act
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act
The National Historic Preservation Act
The Migratory Bird Treaty Act
The Migratory Bird Conservation Act
The Clean Air Act
The Archeological Resources Protection Act
The Paleontological Resources Preservation Act
The Federal Cave Resources Protection Act of 1988
The National Trails System Act
The Safe Drinking Water Act
The Noise Control Act
The Solid Waste Disposal Act
The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act
The Archaeological and Historic Preservation Act
The Antiquities Act
The Historic Sites, Buildings, and Antiquities Act
The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act
The Farmland Protection Policy Act
The Federal Land Policy and Management Act
The National Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956
The Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act
The Wild Horse and Burro Act
The Administrative Procedure Act
The Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899
The Eagle Protection Act
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act
The American Indian Religious Freedom Act
The Military Lands Withdrawal Act of 1999
The Sikes Act
The Reclamation Project Act of 1939

Top photos copyright Ofelia Rivas, article copyright Brenda Norrell, Censored News, may not be used without permission.

No comments:

About Censored News

Censored News is published by Brenda Norrell. Since 2006, Censored News has received more than 20 million pageviews. As a collective of writers, photographers and broadcasters, we publish news of Indigenous Peoples and human rights. Contact publisher Brenda Norrell:

Donate to Censored News

Please donate to Censored News for travel and equipment for our live coverage. Thank you, Brenda.