Wednesday, June 30, 2010

State Dept. Review: UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

The State Department is currently reviewing the United States' failure to endorse the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. As part of this formal review, the State Department is holding consultations with Indian and Alaska Native nations and NGOs to discuss the upcoming review process and receive comments. The State Department wants to receive comments from Indian and Alaska Native nations, NGOs and individuals.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

Members of federally recognized tribes can participate in the July 7th Consultation either in person or by conference call. RSVP to declaration@state.gov by July 2, 2010, and include "RSVP - July 7th Tribal Consultation" in the subject line. Please indicate if you will be attending in person or participating via conference call.

Anyone can submit written comments to the State Department by July 15, 2010.

By email to declaration@state.gov

By mail to:

S/SR Global Intergovernmental Affairs
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street, NW, Suite 1317
Washington, DC 20520.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Our Auction Page


Visit our auction page and place your bid.

Donated items are being offered for auction to help raise funds for our freedom campaign. So don't wait. Place a bid.

Click here to view the available items.

Indigenous News from the US Social Forum-Detroit


Censored News
http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

The Social Forum in Detroit continues with a healing walk on Saturday and report from Bolivia's Ambassador
New videos, photos and articles at Censored News:
Indigenous Peoples at US Social Forum: Halting the Legacy of Genocide
Art Manuel: Indigenous First Impacted by Resource Extraction
Indigenous Groups Lead Struggle Against Canada's Tar Sands
VIDEO: Tewa Women United at US Social Forum
VIDEO: Navajos Oppose Uranium Mining: US Social Forum
Photos: Toronto Indigenous Day of Action
Native Peoples Assembly: US Social Forum Detroit
Native Peoples Reporting: US Social Forum
Live Earthcycles Thursday US Social Forum
Earthcycles Live at Social Forum
Photos Native American Welcome Dinner: US Social Forum
North American Indigenous Peoples Developing Solutions
Jerry Fisher's Photos: US Social Forum Detroit
Earthcycles Live: Tom Goldtooth, IEN, at US Social Forum
Disturbing Obama's Universe
US Social Forum: More photos by Brita Brookes
US Social Forum Detroit Photos by Brita Brookes
Photos US Social Forum Detroit by Orin Langelle
Earthcycles Live at US Social Forum Detroit
US Social Forum Live/Free Speech TV

http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com

35th Anniversary of the Firefight: Statement by Leonard Peltier


June 26, 2010


Greetings,

I want to first say thank you—thank you for taking the time and making the commitment to come to this place—but thank you mostly for remembering. Sometimes I sit in this cage and I find myself wondering if anyone really remembers. Many days, remembering is all my mind allows me to do. So, again, thank you. Thank you for bearing witness and being a part of a living memory.

But maybe the most important thing I’d like to say is don’t forget. Not ever.

You must be the historians who keep this lesson alive because this story isn’t about one day, one event, one person, or even one lifetime. This is a story that goes all the way back to the day a misguided fool, whose name I won’t even mention, led his troops in an attack on innocent people at the Greasy Grass, and in the process got himself and over two hundred of his troopers killed. And while the victors on that day had no choice but to defend themselves, we have been the victims of a genocidal revenge that continues until this very moment. So don’t forget. Not ever.

It is vengeance that preoccupies the mind of the colonizer. It is this fervor to show us who is boss that led to the massacre at Wounded Knee, the theft of the Black Hills, the establishment of boarding schools, and the criminalization of our languages and traditional ways. It is vengeance that armed the GOON squads, killed our leaders, and surrounded our people at Wounded Knee again in 1973. Revenge is why they today prosecute Indian people for the crimes they know the government committed during their murderous campaigns of the last generation. Vengeance is what killed Joe Stuntz, Anna Mae Aquash, Buddy Lamont and so many others. Getting even is what keeps me in prison. So don’t forget. Not ever.

All of these events are bound together, interrelated and interdependent. And quite clearly the lesson they intend for us to learn is don’t defend yourselves. Don’t stand up for what is right. Don’t think for yourselves. Don’t choose to be who you are. Don’t remember your ancestors. Don’t live in defense of the Earth. Don’t you do it! Don’t even think about it. If you do, this government—this mindset of control—will unleash an attack so vast it will even seek to destroy our genetic memories. So don’t forget. Not ever.

In days past, some among our people were induced to become “scouts”. For whatever reasons, these individuals made possible the treacherous campaigns that resulted in the deaths of countless innocent people. These days—sadly—there are still these types amongst us. The government preys on the weaknesses of these people, inducing them to turn against the rest of us. The government uses this treachery to cover up state sanctioned murder and terrorism. They do this and then tell us that what we remember didn’t really happen at all, as though memory or truth is something to be shaped and molded to fit a preconceived outcome. So don’t forget. Not ever.

We gather today after decades and generations of blood and trauma. We gather in defiance.

And we remember.

We remember not just one day or one event, because remembering what occurred on June 25 or June 26—or any particular date—is important, but not as important as an understanding of the ongoing campaign of colonization. This is a continuing human drama of slaughter and uncontrollable bloodlust and we’re still here, engaged in our running defense; praying for balance, peace and justice; and trying to make some sense of it all. Perhaps, in the face of such a menace, the most important thing we can do is remember. So teach your children. Pass this knowledge. Don’t forget. Not ever.

Remembering is resisting and, if we remember, then we’ll be free one day. Free of their mindset. Free of their theft. Free of their guns and their bombs. Free of their cages. Free to be who we are.

And free of their fear. That’s the truest freedom of all and true freedom is what this is really all about, not the illusion of freedom they offer us.

So don’t forget. Not ever.

In the Spirit of Crazy Horse,


Leonard Peltier

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Immigration Checkpoint


Gerald Heaney, influential Minn. judge, dies at 92


Gerald Heaney, influential Minn. judge, dies at 92
by Bob Kelleher, Minnesota Public Radio
June 22, 2010


Duluth, Minn. — Retired federal appeals court Judge Gerald Heaney, a longtime DFL activist and an influential jurist, died Tuesday in his hometown of Duluth. He was 92.

One of Heaney's highest profile cases occurred in the 1980s, when Heaney helped draw up a plan to desegregate the St. Louis schools, creating the largest student transfer for racial balance in the United States.

Heaney was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th circuit by President Lyndon Johnson in 1966, after being nominated by Minnesota U.S. Sen. Eugene McCarthy. Heaney lived in Duluth and served in that city, as well as in St. Paul and the 8th circuit's base in St. Louis, Missouri.

Heaney authored or helped write opinions that desegregated schools in Omaha, Neb., Little Rock, Ark. and St. Louis. The voluntary plan he helped craft for St. Louis has been modeled by several other districts.

"We have lost a very good person. I'm quite saddened by it," said Susan Uchitelle, who was appointed to run the St. Louis Metropolitan Voluntary Intra-district Transfer Program.

The program was voluntary for students, but the suburban school districts around St. Louis had to participate.

"So that African-American students in St. Louis would have the opportunity to choose, and go to one of 16 suburban school districts that had less than a 25 percent minority population," she said.


Desegregation planHeaney oversaw the desegregation plan for 20 years, often visiting St. Louis. Uchitelle says he always wanted to share dinner with inner city students who took classes in the suburbs.

Heaney also was key in a case involving American Indian activist Leonard Peltier, who was convicted of killing two FBI agents in a shoot-out on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

While Heaney twice confirmed Peltier's conviction, he also urged clemency for Peltier to help heal the rift between Pine Ridge tribal members and whites.

Heaney was an outspoken opponent of the death penalty, and a champion for women's rights.

Before his appointment to the appeals court, Heaney was a longtime political activist. He grew up in Goodhue County, and spent 20 years practicing law in Duluth.

Along with leading Minnesota Democrats Orville Freeman and Hubert Humphrey, Heaney fought in 1948 to keep the Democratic Party from moving too far left, staying on the side of incumbent President Harry Truman over Henry Wallace.

Heaney helped organize Hubert Humphrey's 1948 U.S. Senate campaign.

Heaney was also a war hero, landing in Normandy on D-Day, 1944, and fighting across Europe during World War II, earning the Silver and Bronze Stars.

In a 2006 interview with Minnesota Public Radio, Heaney explained how his life influenced his decisions from the bench.

"My life experience -- for growing up in a small town, a kind father, serving the Army, representing the labor movement, being involved in politics -- and so finally when you get a hard case, a tough case that people can reasonably disagree on, it comes down to really what you think is best for our country in the long run," Heaney said at the time.

Remembrances of Heaney are pouring in from top Democrats.

Minnesota U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar said Judge Heaney was one of the most influential legal minds in Minnesota's history.

Former Vice President Walter Mondale called Heaney one of the truly remarkable Minnesotans and Americans in modern history.

"I personally think he should have been on the Supreme Court," said Mondale. "Before he went on the bench he was a leader in DFL politics. He was very close to Hubert [Humphrey], and to Gene McCarthy, John Blatnik -- almost to everybody ... [He was] a wonderful, wonderful human being with a marvelous record."

U.S. Rep. Jim Oberstar, who represents Minneesota's 8th Congressional District, said he talked with Heaney just last Friday. Oberstar said Heaney's mind was alert and keen, and his sense of humor was intact -- as was his passion.

Heaney retired from the appeals court in 2006. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Eleanor. Services are pending.

Oglala Commemoration Update: Concert Venue Change


Due to all unforseen events in Oglala we have moved the concert portion of the event to the Prairie Wind Casino. Concert will begin at 6:00PM.

Dinner will be served at the Jumping Bull Property.

Please post and disseminate widely.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Opening Ceremony, US Social Forum: Leonard Peltier


LEONARD PELTIER: STATEMENT FOR THE OPENING CEREMONY
U.S. SOCIAL FORUM-DETROIT
June 22, 2010

Welcome to the traditional lands of my people, the Anishinabe... Greetings, my brothers and sisters. Greetings also to my relations from the many different Indigenous Nations who now call this place “ Home ” . Thank you for your warm welcome.

Hello to all the people of conscience in attendance at the US Social Forum. Thank you for taking the time and expense to attend an event that people will talk about for years to come. I know if you focus and believe, this event can be a major step in the development of a new society—one that turns away from fossil fuels, war and the rampant destruction of our universal home and, instead, focuses on the betterment of all... as opposed to the enrichment of a select few.

I ask that you work this week, in particular, toward full recognition of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as an essential component of a just and honorable U.S. human rights policy. As many of you may know, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples was developed over many years with the participation of thousands of Indigenous Peoples. It is consistent with human rights principles as contained in international law, as well as the U.S. Constitution. And, yet, two nations with the largest Indigenous populations—Canada and the United States—have failed to endorse the Declaration. We call upon the United States government to finally endorse the Declaration in its entirety—without qualifications or exceptions—and to work in full partnership with Indigenous Peoples, Tribal governments and Nations to ensure its implementation.

I am Leonard Peltier, an American Indian political prisoner who fought against some of the same ideas and mechanisms many of you are fighting against today. Perhaps it was in a different way and a different time, but many years ago we were warning against the very realities many of you face today. The energy companies were raping Indian Country years ago—long before the oil spills, the mining disasters, and the poisoned waters America has come to know so well. So perhaps you can spare a few minutes to listen to the admonitions of an old man, an old warrior whose wisdom has come at a very high price.

I encourage you to find unity in your various causes, because all of your struggles are linked. Actually, you don’t just find unity, you create it—each of you individually. Create unity within your specific organizations. And between them. Link your efforts and find ways to network and maximize those efforts.

Making change has never been more important. Make the most of every second, for time is growing short, as so many prophecies have foretold. Educate others about the realities you are struggling for and against. Especially focus on educating the young people who will further your efforts tomorrow. Know that your sensibilities are a gift from Creator intended to wake up and shake up the world so that we may improve how we treat the Earth and each other.

We Indian people like to say “we are all related”. I pass that truth on to you now. Each and every one of you and the work you are doing are related. Let that be your greeting between groups and persons, as well as an ethic—the very spirit of what gatherings like this are intended to be. Practice thinking and saying it until it is automatic. We are all related, so put aside whatever differences you may have and make solidarity a new and constant reality. Remember, this is not your struggle. It is for everyone.

I thank you for taking the time to remember an old activist and perhaps learn from the experiences of another people from another time.

Now go out and change the world! Make it a place you’ll be proud to hand to the next seven generations!

Doksha.

In the Spirit of Crazy Horse,


Leonard Peltier

Saturday, June 19, 2010

US Political Prisoners: Leonard Peltier, Mumia Abu-Jamal, and the Cuban 5. 23 June @ the USSF




Prison Justice: People's Movement Assembly


PRISON JUSTICE
People's Movement Assembly
US Social Forum, Detroit, MI
Co-sponsored by the Leonard Peltier Defense Offense Committee





Incident at Oglala: 35th Anniversary Events


25 June



AIM-WEST, Inter-Tribal Friendship House and American Indian Movement (AIM) cordially invite the Bay Area to an afternoon of fundraising activities and information with a theme of political prisoners held in the U.S.

Come learn about the case of American Indian prisoner, Leonard Peltier, incarcerated over 35 years! Yes, longer than Nelson Mandela! It is cruel and inhumane, and Leonard should be released immediately!!

The youth, students and young adults (that’s you!), are especially encouraged to attend and learn about the “reign of terror” that took the lives of over 65 people during 1973-76 in South Dakota. No one has been held accountable for their deaths! And yet Leonard Peltier languishes in prison today.

Date: Friday, June 25, 2010
Time: 5 pm to 9 pm
Location: Inter-Tribal Friendship House, 523 International Boulevard, Oakland, CA
Price/donation: $ 5.00, No one turned away for lack of cash!

The program will be aired with live audience on radio KPFA radio FM 94.1 starting at 5 pm to 6 pm with “Flashpoints” hosted by Dennis Bernstein, Miguel “Gavilan” Molina, and special guest Jimbo Simmons.

The evening MC will be Bill “Jimbo” Simmons, AIM-WEST host, with musical performance, along with drummers and singers, the traditional Mexica Azteca Danzantes, prisoner rights advocates, and raffle!

A special showing of film, “Warrior-The Life of Leonard Peltier” This video (starts at 6:30 pm) is officially endorsed by Leonard Peltier (85 minutes): The shocking, true story of Leonard Peltier, the American Indian leader locked away for life in Leavenworth Penitentiary, convicted of aiding and abetting, for the death of two FBI agents during a bloody shoot-out on the Pine Ridge Reservation on June 26, 1975. To understand Peltier’s story, ”Warrior” takes us back to the violent confrontations at Pine Ridge and Wounded Knee in the Seventies, and then to today’s Indian reservations where the government’s plans for uranium mining and waste dumping are still being heatedly resisted by Indian activists. The heart of the film, though, is a detailed painstaking account of Peltier’s harrowing odyssey through the American justice system.

For more information, call 415-577-1492 or visit the website
www.aimwest.info.
To learn more about Leonard Peltier, please visit
www.whoisleonardpeltier.info.

FREEDOM FOR LEONARD PELTIER NOW!!

-------

26 June

Oglala, SD: Oglala Commemoration. See
www.oglalacommemoration.com.


Click on Event Flyer



Click on

Youth Concert Promo


-------

26 June

San Jose, CA: Commemorating Leonard Peltier & the Reign of Terror. Fundraiser for Leonard Peltier Defense Offense Committee (LP-DOC). Honor Leonard Peltier And those who lost their lives during the Reign of Terror. Help build the movement to bring about Leonard’s release from prison.

Saturday, 26 June 2010
@ SJSU Bldg. Auditorium, Room 189, and the grassy area
3:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Program:

* Update on Leonard Peltier
* Statement by Leonard Peltier
* Vic Buildsafire - hip hop artist, among others
* Screening "Incident at Oglala: The Leonard Peltier Story"
* Following the film, potluck at 7th Street BBQ pits on campus

Sponsored by LPDOC Chapter, Silicon Valley, California, USA. For more information, contact Donna at 408-293-4774 or send an e-mail to
FreeLeonardPeltier@hotmail.com.


Thursday, June 17, 2010

AIM-WEST: Freedom for Leonard Peltier Now!


AIM-WEST, Inter-Tribal Friendship House and American Indian Movement (AIM) cordially invite the Bay Area to an afternoon of fundraising activities and information with a theme of political prisoners held in the U.S.

Come learn about the case of American Indian prisoner, Leonard Peltier, incarcerated over 35 years! Yes, longer than Nelson Mandela! It is cruel and inhumane, and Leonard should be released immediately!!

The youth, students and young adults (that’s you!), are especially encouraged to attend and learn about the “reign of terror” that took the lives of over 65 people during 1973-76 in South Dakota. No one has been held accountable for their deaths! And yet Leonard Peltier languishes in prison today.

Date: Friday, June 25, 2010
Time: 5 pm to 9 pm
Location: Inter-Tribal Friendship House, 523 International Boulevard, Oakland, CA
Price/donation: $ 5.00, No one turned away for lack of cash!

The program will be aired with live audience on radio KPFA radio FM 94.1 starting at 5 pm to 6 pm with “Flashpoints” hosted by Dennis Bernstein, Miguel “Gavilan” Molina, and special guest Jimbo Simmons.

The evening MC will be Bill “Jimbo” Simmons, AIM-WEST host, with musical performance, along with drummers and singers, the traditional Mexica Azteca Danzantes, prisoner rights advocates, and raffle!

A special showing of film, “Warrior-The Life of Leonard Peltier”. This video (starts at 6:30 pm) is officially endorsed by Leonard Peltier (85 minutes): The shocking, true story of Leonard Peltier, the American Indian leader locked away for life in Leavenworth Penitentiary, convicted of aiding and abetting, for the death of two FBI agents during a bloody shoot-out on the Pine Ridge Reservation on June 26, 1975. To understand Peltier’s story, ”Warrior” takes us back to the violent confrontations at Pine Ridge and Wounded Knee in the Seventies, and then to today’s Indian reservations where the government’s plans for uranium mining and waste dumping are still being heatedly resisted by Indian activists. The heart of the film, though, is a detailed painstaking account of Peltier’s harrowing odyssey through the American justice system.

For more information, call 415-577-1492 or visit the website www.aimwest.info.

To learn more about Leonard Peltier, please visit www.whoisleonardpeltier.info.

FREEDOM FOR LEONARD PELTIER NOW!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Seneca Wisdomkeeper Edna Gordon Speaks Out


SENECA HAWK ELDER EDNA GORDON SPEAKS OUT from Harvey Arden on Vimeo.

A BROOMSTICK REVOLUTION
WE NEED CHANGES in this world, really big big changes.
I'm prayin' they'll be peaceable changes, not violent and bloody ones.
I'd like to see a peaceable revolution,
a revolution of broomsticks instead of guns.
Call it a Broomstick Revolution.
That's right. We the People pick up our broomsticks
and march together and Sweep Injustice Out!
Make a clean sweep, a big cleanin' like's never been seen before.
Broomsticks against Injustice. Now that'll be the day!
We'll take our broomsticks and we'll sweep Leonard Peltier
right out o' prison, along with all the other innocents.
Yep—a Broomstick Revolution! That's what we need!

*************************************
Inquiries about joining the World-Wide Broomstick Revolution to rdgordon@hotmail.com

...put YEP on subject line

with a CC to harveyarden@starpower.net

Friday, June 4, 2010

United Nations Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples

State Department plans consultation over indigenous rights


State Department plans consultation over indigenous rights
Friday, June 4, 2010

The Department of State plans to consult tribes about the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The department will hold meetings with tribes but the schedule has not been announced. Written comments are being accepted until July 15.

The United States was one of four nations that voted against the declaration in November 2007. Australia and New Zealand have changed their stances, leaving the U.S. and Canada as the only holdouts.

But the Obama administration is reconsidering. Susan Rice, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, announced a shift in thinking in a speech at the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in April.

Related Stories:

Secretary Salazar issues statement on indigenous rights (4/23)
Obama reviews stance on indigenous rights declaration (4/20)
Maine tribes welcome executive order on consultation (2/25)
Leader of Maine's tribal-state commission leaves post (1/22)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Close down the Communications Management Units

There are alarming changes within the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) that affect all federal prisoners to one degree or another. This includes Leonard Peltier and his fellow inmates at USP-Lewisburg. We need your help to stem the tide.

This week, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) submitted comments to the federal BOP on behalf of prisoners housed in two experimental prison units. The Communications Management Units (CMUs) were designed to isolate and segregate certain prisoners in the federal prison system and they are located in Indiana and Illinois. The Center is working in coalition with CMU prisoners, their family members and friends, civil rights and civil liberties groups, legal providers, psychologists, former prison wardens, environmental advocacy organizations, criminal defense attorneys and community and faith-based organizations to urge the BOP to close the CMUs. In March, CCR filed a federal lawsuit challenging the unconstitutional nature of the units. Learn more about Aref, et al. v. Holder, et al.

These prisoners include those with "unpopular" political views, such as environmental activists. These prisoners' communications with family, friends and the outside world are severely limited, and they are also cruelly deprived of physical contact with loved ones during the few visits they do receive. CMU prisoners are singled out for harsh treatment without any disclosure of the BOP's reasons and without due process - a clear example of abuse of power, retaliation and racial and religious profiling.

While the BOP secretly created the CMUs in 2006 and 2008, it has only just now opened up a period for comments from the public - as required by law. The deadline to submit public comments is Monday, June 7, 2010.

The time is now to stand for justice and oppose the CMUs. Tell the BOP to stop isolating prisoners in experimental units today.

You can submit your comments online or through the mail, and you can submit anonymously.

Deadline: June 7, 2010

Submit your comment online:

Click here or visit: http://www.regulations.gov/search/Regs/home.html#documentDetail?R=0900006480ad11c7. Select the "Submit Comment" button. You can upload a document or type in your comments.

Submit your comment through the mail:

If you submit comments via regular mail, please send them to the following address and include the following docket number in your correspondence.

BOP DOCKET #1148-P COMMUNICATION MANAGEMENT UNITS
Rules Unit, Office of General Counsel Bureau of Prisons
320 First Street, NW
Washington, DC 20534

We encourage you to emphasize the issues that matter most to you. (Click here to download a template letter.)

Here's a suggested list of ideas you can raise:
  • Lack of due process at the CMU: None of the CMU prisoners have been told why they were designated to the CMU, or what evidence was used to make that decision. They have received no hearing to challenge their CMU designation. Likewise, there is no meaningful review process to earn their way out of the CMU. This lack of transparency deprives prisoners of their due process rights.
  • Overrepresentation of Muslim and political prisoners at the CMU: Because there is no oversight procedure of who gets sent to the CMU and why, there has been an unchecked pattern of Muslim prisoners and politically active prisoners being sent to the CMU. Somewhere between 65 and 72% of prisoners at the CMU are Muslim. Others are, and have been, politically active. Their designation to the CMU is both discriminatory and retaliatory.
  • Destructive effect of the CMU on families: The meager number of phone calls and visits that CMU prisoners receive, and the blanket ban on physical contact with loved ones – including children – during visits tears families apart and inflicts pointless suffering of the prisoners and their families alike.
  • Conditions at the CMU amount to cruel and unusual punishment: The isolation experienced by CMU prisoners, and the ways in which they are prevented from maintaining their family ties, is cruel and serves no legitimate purpose.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Warrior: The Life of Leonard Peltier


Warrior: The Life of Leonard Peltier
Thu., June 10, 7:00 pm
Maysles Cinema
343 Lenox Ave./Malcolm X Blvd.
New York NY

Excellent documentary on the Peltier case by director Suzie Baer (1992).
Double-featured w/H-2 Worker.