End of the Tar Sands? Under media near-blackout, new Indigenous "mutual defense" Treaty signals formalized opposition to Tar Sands projects & pipelines
VIA: Protect the Sacred Timeline Photos: Here is a picture of Faith Spotted Eagle signing the International Treaty to Protect the Sacred. This is the first time a woman has signed such a treaty and she did so on behalf of the Brave Heart Society. Let the healing continue in the name of unprecedented unified action! — at Yankton Sioux: Lake Andes, South Dakota.
A strongly worded Treaty has been signed by representatives of some North American tribal nations and has now been taken far and wide to many reservations & villages across the continent. Some of our independent media colleagues were on hand and videos are expected soon. Here is a link to the raw live video from OccupyMusician: http://bit.ly/VeFvNo .
Anyway the text below of the includes formal opposition to projects in Minnesota. Another important development seems to be the circumvention of the proxy/quisling/Vichy/whatever-you-want-to-call-it tribal council structures - instead "treaty councils", a kind of alternate avenue more consonant with direct democracy, appears to be emerging as a tactic for formally dealing with/turning back internal corruption & hierarchy.
Additionally it now public that the Red Lake Ojibwe are asserting their rights against a pipeline in northern Minnesota. For related info see the Indigenous Environmental Network.
This is a major subject which has been almost totally blacked out in the media. There may be avenues of redress at the UN as this is an international-system-level statement.
My understanding, though I was not there, that there were very non-native few people on hand at the remote conference site in South Dakota which produced this document, although there were a few Earth First! and Tar Sands Blockade people as well as our media colleagues.
There is an #IdleNoMore march tomorrow, January 28th starting at Gold Medal Park which is related and also later a gathering in the Twin Cities for Indians in Minnesota to look at this treaty and consider joining.
Also unfortunately there was some kind of "fold" which occurred in Texas re the Tar Sands Blockade and Rising Tide: Deal in Texas court could end pipeline protests - Brownsville Herald (TX). // Deal may end area oil pipeline protests - Longview News-Journal. The backstory here is unclear but it highlights the perils of NGO-involved projects & the importance of anonymity once the specialized corporate field goons start operating in full force, like they were in Texas. (I heard that the only NGO person at this Treaty conference was allegedly with World Wildlife Fund - though this person probably didn't have nefarious intentions, it's definitely worth checking out the WWF 1001 Club for a true Rabbit Hole of schemes: 1001 Club - Institute for the Study of Globalization and Covert Politics // ISGP - 2010 confidential list of the WWF's 1001 Club including geopolitik hardballers Robert Vesco, Agha Abedi, Salem Bin Laden, Mortimer Bloomfield, Mobutu Sese Seko, and above it all the Bilderberg/Knights of Malta Prince Bernhard.)
While the NGO people have perhaps folded up and gone away (though it's hardly clear right now), the natives don't really have anywhere else to go, and have a different kind of sovereignty yet to be fully asserted in a manner more like what this new treaty expresses.
Signed on January 25th 2013
International Treaty to Protect the Sacred from Tar Sands Projects
The representatives from sovereign Indigenous Nations, tribes, and governments, participating in the Gathering to Protect the Sacred on January 23 – 25, 2013, on the 150 year anniversary of the Treaty Between the Pawnee and Yankton Sioux, have gathered on the Ihanktonwan homelands, and have resolved by our free, prior, and informed consent to enter into a treaty to be forever respected and protected. We agreed upon the following articles:
The undersigned Indigenous Peoples have inhabited and governed our respective territories according to our laws and traditions since time immemorial.
As sovereign nations, we have entered into bi-lateral and multi-lateral agreements with other nations including the Treaty Between the Pawnee and Yankton Sioux, Mother Earth Accord, the Spiritual Leaders Declaration, the Agreement to Unite to use 16 Guiding Principles, and the Black Hills Sioux Nation Treaty Council Declaration, and all the inter-tribal treaties in the Western hemisphere, among others, which promise peace, friendship, and mutual opposition to tar sands projects and energy development that threaten the lands, the waters, the air, our sacred sites, and our ways of life, and acknowledge other Indigenous Peoples such as the Yinka Dene, the People of the Earth’ who have exercised their lawful authority to ban tar sands projects from their territories through Indigenous legal instruments such as the Save the Fraser Declaration and the Coastal First Nations Declaration.
We act with inherent, lawful, and sovereign authority over our lands, waters, and air, as recognized by Article 32 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples which provides:
States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the indigenous peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands or territories and other resources, particularly in connection with the development, utilization or exploitation of mineral, water or other resources.
We mutually agree that tar sands projects present unacceptable risks to the soil, the waters, the air, sacred sites, and our ways of life including:
- The destruction of rivers, lakes, boreal forests, homelands and health of the Cree, Dene, and Métis peoples in the Northern Alberta tar sands region and downstream Dene communities of Northwest Territories
- The threat of pipeline and tanker oil spills into major river systems, aquifers and water bodies such as the Salish Sea, the North Pacific coast, and the Ogallala Aquifer.
- The negative cumulative health and ecological impacts of tar sands projects on Indigenous Communities.
- The irreparable harm to irreplaceable cultural resources, burial grounds, sacred and historic places, natural resources, and environmental resources of the central plains region which is the aboriginal homelands of many Indigenous Nations.
- Greenhouse gas pollution that could lock the planet onto a path of catastrophic climate change.
We affirm that our laws define our solemn duty and responsibility to our ancestors, to ourselves, and to future generations, to protect the lands and waters of our homelands and we agree to mutually and collectively oppose tar sands projects which would impact our territories, including but not limited to the TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline, the Enbridge Northern Gateway, Enbridge lines nine (9) and sixty-seven (67), or the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline and tanker projects.
We agree to mutually and collectively, as sovereign nations, call upon the Canadian and United States governments to respect our decision to reject tar sands projects that impact our sacred sites and homelands; to call upon the Canadian and United States governments to immediately halt and deny approval for pending tar sands projects because they threaten the soil, water, air, sacred sites, and our ways of life; and, confirm that any such approval would violate our ancestral laws, rights and responsibilities.
We agree to the mutual, collective, and lawful enforcement of our responsibilities to protect our lands, waters, and air by all means necessary, and if called on to do so, we will exercise our peace and friendship by lawfully defending one another’s lands, waters, air, and sacred sites from the threat of tar sands projects, provided that each signatory Indigenous Nation reserves and does not cede their rights to act independently as the tribal governments see fit to protect their respective tribal interests, further provided that each signatory Indigenous Nation reserves its inherent sovereign right to take whatever governmental action and strategy that its governing body sees fit to best protect and advance tribal interests affected by the pipeline project consistent with the agreements made herein and subject to the laws and available resources of each respective nation.
This Treaty of mutual defense and support is made on the occasion of the 150 year anniversary of the Treaty Between the Pawnee and Yankton Sioux concluded between the Pawnee Nation and the Ihanktonwan Oyate/Yankton Sioux Tribe on January 23rd, 1863, and the parties thereto hereby commemorate the signing of that historic treaty that has endured without violation for 150 years.
This Treaty goes into effect once ratified by the governing bodies of the signatory nations.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the undersigned dually authorized representatives, after having deposited their full powers found to be in due and proper form, sign this treaty on behalf of their respective governments, on the date appearing opposite their signatures.
PLEDGE OF SUPPORT to the
INTERNATIONAL TREATY TO PROTECT THE SACRED
FROM TAR SANDS PROJECTS
We the undersigned citizens, levels of government, businesses, unions and non-governmental organizations hereby recognize and commit ourselves to upholding the January 2013 International Treaty to Protect the Sacred from Tar Sands Projects: