Oglala Sioux vow to stop Keystone XL on the ground if Obama won't say no

Indigenous group has been touring United States and Canada offering direct action training to nations committed to standing with the Sioux.

Chief Phil Lane Jr.
Chief Phil Lane Jr. (left) participates in the Vancouver signing of the International Treaty to Protect the Sacred From Tar Sands Projects. Photo courtesy of Phil Lane Jr.

In the latest in a series of announcements escalating resistance to oil and gas development in North America, the Oglala Sioux nation and its allies have committed to stopping the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline on their territory if Obama approves the project.

In response to the US State Department’s environmental report that says Keystone wouldn’t increase the country’s carbon emissions Oglala Sioux president Bryan Brewer, along with organizations Honour the Earth, Owe Aku and Protect the Sacred, released a statement declaring they will stand with the Lakota people to block the pipeline. The statement, seen by many as a significant step toward approval, sparked solidarity action across the US on Monday.

Moccasins on the Ground is a grassroots direct action training organization, and trainer Debra White Plum of the Lakota Sioux nation said the group has been working toward this moment, giving nations the skills they need to defend their land, for years now.

The training is available to anyone who invites the group onto their land, and it consists of four days of training in areas such as knowing your rights, blockading and self-defence, first aid and social media. White Plume said a large part of the impetus for offering the training is the size of the territory at risk. Tribes can be several hundred kilometres away from each other, often making quick help hard to come by.

“This way a community can do whatever they need to do when threatened and they’ll have the skills right here, and that’s really important out here where we live,” she said. “We want this non-violent, direct way that everybody engaging in across the country to be successful,” she said. “But if it’s not and if the final door is closed, then that’s why we’re doing the training.”

The organization has toured the United States and has received requests for training from several nations in Canada. She said the political process has left the people with little choice.

“Every door has been closed through this process. Court decisions have been made that favoured the corporations and there are a few cases here and there where the landowners are still asserting their rights under American law.” But if the government can’t be counted on to uphold its own laws, she said, there’s nothing to stop them violating indigenous treaty rights.

“As red nations people we have seen the federal government violate treaties clear to this day.”

The violation of the treaties—in the case of Keystone it’s primarily the Fort Laramie Treaty between the American government and the Oglala Sioux—is the key reason Phil Lane says it’s unfair to call direct action by indigenous people civil disobedience.

“It is not civil disobedience. This is simply acting out of an aboriginal legal order to stand up for what is right. It is standing up for an ancient aboriginal legal order that has never been extinguished.”

Just as the US and Canada and any other sovereign nation has the right to enter into legally binding treaties, so do First Nations. When a treaty such as the one between the Sioux and the American government is broken by one of the parties bound by it, Lane said a third legal party is required to resolve the situation. Because the governments of the United States and Canada are handling the administration of the treaties they themselves have broken, Lane said it’s impossible to expect justice from them.

What direct action resistance against Keystone looks like will ultimately be up to the Obama administration.

“What's going to happen if he chooses to give in to the oil companies and their allies is he’s going to empower the rising of indigenous people everywhere on Mother Earth,” he said. “This will be another final violation people aren’t ready to take.”

Ottawa-based Idle No More organizer Clayton Thomas-Muller added that it’s crucial to remember that opposition to Keystone XL was initiated and pushed forward by indigenous people. And what’s more, that much of the progress made has been thanks to the indigenous peoples who have demanded recognition of their rights, namely consultation.

In December of 2011 at the annual White House Tribal Leaders Summit, indigenous leaders, including former president of the Rosebud Sioux nation Rodney Bordeaux, presented President Obama with Mother Earth Accord, a document stating indigenous opposition to Keystone XL. The document was endorsed by numerous nations from both sides of the border, NGOs, landowners and the NDP party. Thomas-Muller said it’s the only such document that was delivered into Obama’s hands directly.

“It was only through native rights-based framework being used by indigenous organizations and networks that provide that unparalleled access to the state department and White House,” he said.

He traveled to New York City on Monday night to speak at one of more than 300 actions across 44 states this week. He read a statement written by Debra White Plume and spoke on behalf of Idle No More in Canada.

So many people have been preparing for this moment, he said, and are now coming together for a final push.

“Moving forward, we have a very short timeline. Within the next couple of months we will see a variety of very direct messages like the one we heard from Bryan Brewer of Oglala Sioux nation.”

 

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Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851 & The Compact Clause

As I have been reading and have now completed, the late ,Mr. Russel Means, Book, Where White men fear to tread, As I under stand the Compacts Clause of the United States in relation to The Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851, Both have a degree to have a voice, Congress would have to get the permission from  the Native American, and carry out a vote as to respect the Constitutionally elected Representative republic the United States stand to be , as to define things like the facts what the treaty and or compact would cover the legal debates for as Territories and or state hood Voters right s and inalienable rights for Obama to Sign Less it would be as like the now debates in the courts as with Violations of Law and recces appoints and up and coming presidential executive orders,or even point over the Iran Deal, if Obama signs any Compact with out the direction of congress he would just set him self up for law suits and impeachment and removal of office

Oglala Sioux Vow to Stop keystone XL

Since when have the Americans respected the aboriginal peoples and their land and treaty rights? 

No Tar Sands in Drinking Water

The Keystone pipeline should not be built, because a tar sands spill in the Ogallala Aquifer will pollute the drinking water for millions.

Keystone pipeline a tax issue?

As a Canadian I wonder if the industry produceing our oil sands Get incentives of any kind? Will a incentive produced product be sent to another country. is money we deserve going to help fuel be cheaper in USA or china. Are we paying to keep chinas fuel prices low. Ggrrr.    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIsQ802TQu0   And we are left with a big mess.

On the contrary - the whole

On the contrary - the whole point of XL and Enbridge is to end the discount from world price we are currently giving the US. Since the oil companies in BC base their wholesale costs on the average wholesale cost in WA, OR and ID a higher cost of gasoline there would translate into higher cost gasoline in BC. I have heard figures like an increase of 10-15 cents per litre at the pumps with this.

Native groups have the right to consultation but that's not a veto and groups that threaten "direct action" if things don't go their way leave me cold - do they WANT to go back to the battles of the 1880s between the US Cavalry and the Plains tribes? That can't be in anybody's best interests.

Exactly what clause, of what

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?

Treaties

I suspect all this fro-fer-ah is just posturing so that they can get a really good amount of money for the pipeline. After all, it seems to be SOP for the "poor little Indians" to object strongly until they get their cut.

Re-Run

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?


Well, a rerun would allow us to finally get rid of their worthless butts -- might be worth it in the long run.

Fred Schwieger wrote:

As a Canadian I wonder if the industry produceing our oil sands Get incentives of any kind? Will a incentive produced product be sent to another country. is money we deserve going to help fuel be cheaper in USA or china. Are we paying to keep chinas fuel prices low. Ggrrr.    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIsQ802TQu0   And we are left with a big mess.

 

 The oil/fuel we do sell NOW is discounted because our export is locked to the US due to lack of a route to alternate exports. Though, that said, I no longer support Keystone. Instead we should put a pipeline to the west coast of Hudson's Bay and export from there. That AFTER refining it ourselves so the value added process, and the jobs that go with it, are kept here, along with the larger profit selling refined product gives over crude. Of course, that would require building refineries too, something the NIMBY's and Luddites haven't allowed since the 70s. And then they wonder why gas prices are so high despite oil dropping. Cause the lack of refined product in the supply/demand equation just eludes their mental grasp.

Worthless butts?

Maveeth wrote:

Well, a rerun would allow us to finally get rid of their worthless butts -- might be worth it in the long run.

 

If you want to get rid of some worthless butts, why don't you start with the KKKoch Brothers, who stand to triple their current obscene ill-gotten wealth - which originated from Joseph Stalin, by the way - should this sickening project be built. Because they control both the tar sands and the refineries that would be at the south end of this monstrosity.

 

Somebody kill those bastards and send them to Hell already. I'll take care of things from there.........

Injustice ignored = injustice condoned

It has been said that "Green Growth" is an oxymoron. I disagree. If "Growth" becomes defined as the opposite of planetary ecocide and not $$$? The opposite of destitute billions but clean water, nutritious food, justice and equality? The nurturing and rejuvenation of threatened species and habitat? The education and acceptance of women and girls as equal and deserving members of Humanity? The transformation of "socially enabled capitalism" and Governments that have evolved into "self licking ice cream cones," (Dr. J. Hansen), into watchdogs for a peaceful, just, harmonious cohabitation of all members of Space Ship Earth as we hurtle space and time? The lifting of the burden of necessary labor powered by exploited fossil carbon and the whip and cries of man and beast to the passive advancement of intellect, arts and love powered by the daily allotment of sunshine? Sounds like "Growth" to me.

impartiality

Seeking justice from colonial tribunals is akin to asking a corporation's law firm to settle a dispute one has against the corporation.

Oglala Sioux vot to stop Keystone XL on the Ground

All Power to the Oglala Sioux!

Water rights & trampled treaties

I am very heartened by the position being taken by the indigenous peoples on the Keystone XL pipeline.  The history of the USA as it pertains to water lands and abuses of treaties and the indigenous peoples, for instance, is one of abuse and inhumanity all the way from the President down to local officials.  For those wishing to learn more about this I recommend Cadillac Desert, a detailed and well written book on the subject.

Darkness, Death & Destruction.

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?

 

Your statement is both derisory and inaccurate "The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology."  There were far more indigenous peoples here when European marauders arrived.  They far more civilized, far cleaner and lived a respectful life in harmony with Mother Earth.  The filth and diseases of the Europeans is what virtually wiped out those people of the lands.  So the birth of white European North America is one of darkness, death and destruction, wrapped in lies and not much changed if anything at all.

 

Response.

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?

Actually, that's correct - the railroads, pipelines, highways, etc, anywhere on US soil are illegal due to the uncomfortable fact that we murdered, poisoned, and raped millions of First Nations People before building them. By your logic, if someone came to your house right now and forced you off of your property with superior firepower, you would have to leave forever because they rightfully took land from the weaker party. 

But I bet you don't like that train of thought, do you? It's uncomfortable to be empathetic when it runs counter to your convoluted beliefs about ownership and rights. 

 

racist

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?

NGP

Now that I know the muck flowing through the Northern gateway Pipeline will cross extremely ecologically-sensitive regions of the British Columbia coastline on it's way to Asia to fuel Chinese factories, I stand in firm opposition.

approve the keystone XL it lesser than other evils!

First off I am totally against Pollution and Corporate greed worldwide!  I also feel that Native groups should reap the rewards of Oil and Gas development through their territory.

The Keystone XL must be approved!  The Kinder Morgan twiinning must be approved!    Northern Gateway must be stopped!   

Most people that read the VO and who are reading this are against ALL OIL DEVELOPMENT, fine but this tar sand development is happening and the oil will move.    People!   Look at the big picture and understand the simple truth:   Professional Environmentalist's, NGO's and their ELITE backers are being payed to disrupt pipelines often by people who want to control  the Profits of the highly complied O&G  pricing system.   

PLEASE USE COMMON SENSE:  

1) Keystone XL is routed through relatively "benign" FLAT terrain - it will create competition in the O&G industry, competition reduces costs and improves employment for hundreds of thousands of people in the US and Canada  including Natives!

2)  the Kinder Morgan  "twiinning" will move Oil along an existing route through  the Port of Vancouver.   Vancouver, is a pretty city but hardly a pristine wilderness!   If there is a spill, there are litterally millions of people available to help clean it up!

3)  NORTHERN GATEWAY MUST BE STOPPED!   This is the worst idea of the Elites who control the tar sands!   They want this route as it is the shortest route to Asia from the Tar Sands.  Use common sense!   The route is pristine wilderness  and if a tanker crashes, there are no people around to help clean it up!  

In a perfect world, we would not need to develop oil and gas , yes we should all drive less etc.... but until we do  North American produced energy is far, far better than importing from countries that hate us.   Furthermore, humans should live in their own filth  and at least protect some areas of the world (like the wilderness that the northern gateway will go through)

thank you for your time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uh, no.

Mike Brunt wrote:

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?

 

Your statement is both derisory and inaccurate "The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology."  There were far more indigenous peoples here when European marauders arrived.  They far more civilized, far cleaner and lived a respectful life in harmony with Mother Earth.  The filth and diseases of the Europeans is what virtually wiped out those people of the lands.  So the birth of white European North America is one of darkness, death and destruction, wrapped in lies and not much changed if anything at all.

 

Mike you obviously have bought into the Disney version of Native Americans and not the real history.  Native Americans went to war often and repeatedly against one another.  They took slaves.  They engaged in ritualistic torture.  They engaged in environmental degradation also --  tribes would fish out small lakes and then move on, etc.  I have nothing against aboriginal people but the idea that they are/were saints is nonsense of the first order.  They are human and they did plenty of awful things to the environment and each other long before Europeans arrived.  That it wasn't worse is mainly due to a lack of technology and a much smaller population living on the continent than now.

If you really feel our civilization is built on evil Mike, please feel free to pack your bags and leave back to England or wherever your roots take you to.  Personally I don't subscribe to the idea that 30% of the world's landmass could belong exclusively to one group of people, but that's just me.

Ugh

If you are against oil production, please throw away your cell phone, the shingles on your roof, the clothes on your back, etc.  It is hypocritical for you to avail yourself of these things while protesting the production and transport of the raw materials needed to make them.  There are literally thousands of miles of pipeline all over the place and we are not all dying from water poisoning, so I think it's safe to say one more pipeline of 1500 miles is not really going to make a huge difference. 

But If you really want to kill the pipeline, the surest way to do that is diminish demand, so stop being part of the demand.  But I think some of us are just a bit too comfortable in our heated houses to do that.  We'd rather offshore unpleasant petrochemical production to 3rd world countries where we don't have to see it to 'protect' our water.

James Sheldrick wrote:

Now that I know the muck flowing through the Northern gateway Pipeline will cross extremely ecologically-sensitive regions of the British Columbia coastline on it's way to Asia to fuel Chinese factories, I stand in firm opposition.

Whitemen and His Story

Maveeth wrote:

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?


Well, a rerun would allow us to finally get rid of their worthless butts -- might be worth it in the long run.

What ahistoric and simpleminded talk.  Palefaces stole Indian Land, murdered Indian people, women and children, and went crazy with propoganda about blood thirsty savages whenever they lost a skirmish.  Read The Inconvenient Indian...a recent book by a Canadian of mixed blood heritage if you want a crash course on historic White Racism, Cheating and general Nastiness.  Thought I knew the essential story...I didnt' know the half of it.

 

That these so called vanquished people are no preparing to defend our land and water base...while yahoos who don't have to even read the broken treaties take cheap shots at them, is more than shameful.  But perhaps a few of us palefaces are feeling indigenous these days and plan to join them.....we can only hope.

 

The Keystone Struggle

It would be nice if before people make disparaging remarks about Native People....or any other group for that matter....they tucked into a bit of research.  My husband and I have been semi following the story of Keystone....including lovely Justin's trip to the states to say: "I like the Keystone, but I  oppose the Gateway"....and the issue is a complex one.

 

Reducing it to economics....short term good for Canada, or the Koch brothers.........and making stupid comments that you think are clever about people against the TransCanada project....is a bit simple minded.  But then, perhaps the other side of the Economics coin is Climate Change Denial?

 

In which case, stay tuned: Mother Earth is speaking, as are Native people across North America.  It might be an idea to listen before we lead off with insults, in typical male paleface fashion.

Just a thought.

stupid comment

Not wrote:

Mike Brunt wrote:

Lee Morrison wrote:

Exactly what clause, of what treaty, Fort Laramie or otherwise would be violated by the construction of a pipeline that doesn't cross reservation land? Is every pipeline, railway, highway and county road in the USA illegal. What about title to land once controlled by Indians but granted to homesteaders in the 1800s?

What a bunch of nonsense.

The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology. Do the Sioux, most of whom are integrated into modern society, really want a re-run?

 

Your statement is both derisory and inaccurate "The Indian Wars were won by the palefaces thanks to their overwhelming numbers and superior technology."  There were far more indigenous peoples here when European marauders arrived.  They far more civilized, far cleaner and lived a respectful life in harmony with Mother Earth.  The filth and diseases of the Europeans is what virtually wiped out those people of the lands.  So the birth of white European North America is one of darkness, death and destruction, wrapped in lies and not much changed if anything at all.

 

Mike you obviously have bought into the Disney version of Native Americans and not the real history.  Native Americans went to war often and repeatedly against one another.  They took slaves.  They engaged in ritualistic torture.  They engaged in environmental degradation also --  tribes would fish out small lakes and then move on, etc.  I have nothing against aboriginal people but the idea that they are/were saints is nonsense of the first order.  They are human and they did plenty of awful things to the environment and each other long before Europeans arrived.  That it wasn't worse is mainly due to a lack of technology and a much smaller population living on the continent than now.

If you really feel our civilization is built on evil Mike, please feel free to pack your bags and leave back to England or wherever your roots take you to.  Personally I don't subscribe to the idea that 30% of the world's landmass could belong exclusively to one group of people, but that's just me.

 

love it or leave it -- this is about the dumbest response written in this whole batch. You apparently are not aware that 2% of the world's population 'own' more than 50% of its land surface. Go home ? To where ? to the slums that Marx talked about in the 19th Century when Americans were making their hung-ho land grab and slaughter of the Indian people ? Love it or leave it - a typical Redneck racist response. Instead of recognizing that this continent was populated by many different kinds of people before Europeans washed up onto shore, we should try to live together the most sensible way possible -- seriously --- or kill ourselves all off all at once...