A recent spate of high-profile campaigns against projects based on extracting raw materials has opened up an important new dynamic within the broad processes of change sweeping South America. Understanding their nature and significance is crucial to grasping the complexities involved in bringing about social change and how best to build solidarity with peoples' struggles.
Some Indian bands have signed agreements regarding the Pacific Trail Pipeline, but the Wet’suwet’en hereditary clans claim jurisdiction over their territories, where they demand the right to free, prior and informed consent and the right to say “no” to pipelines. Below is a new video explaining the importance of front line defense against fracked gas and tarsands bitumen featuring Togestiy, an organizer of the Unist’ot’en camp in north central British Columbia.
BARACK OBAMA has once again delayed a decision on final approval of the Keystone XL pipeline.
The move, announced quietly on April 18 as Washington was winding down for the Easter weekend, is clearly designed to avoid a contentious issue until after the November elections. "Approving the pipeline before the election would rankle Obama's allies and donors in the environmental community," the Washington Postnoted, "but nixing it could be politically damaging to vulnerable Democrats running this year in conservative-leaning areas."
A meeting of the Cartagena Dialogue for Progressive Action took place in the Marshall Islands on April 1. The body is composed of 30 countries working towards a legally binding United Nations climate change convention before of an international summit next year.
Delegates had a chance to witness first-hand the effects of climate change in the host country, a small atoll nation in the Pacific Ocean, where no land rises more than two meters above sea level.
The Cowboy Indian Alliance arrived in Washington, D.C. last week to send its message of resistance against the Keystone XL pipeline and the threat of further environmental destruction on the Great Plains and beyond.
When I sat down to an early morning interview with Evo Morales over a decade ago in Cochabamba, Bolivia, the then-coca farmer leader and dissident congressman was drinking fresh-squeezed orange juice and ignoring the constant rings of the landline phone at his union’s office. Just a few weeks before our meeting, a nation-wide social movement demanded that Bolivia’s natural gas reserves be put under state control. How the wealth underground could benefit the poor majority above ground was on everybody’s mind.
On April 22nd, 2014, the Cowboy Indian Alliance rode into Washington, DC, set up eight tipis on the National Mall, blessed the encampment, and settled in for a week of resistance and protest against the Keystone XL pipeline.
Press Statement, April 23, 2014, Standing Our Sacred Ground - First Nations, Tribal Leaders & Land Owners Send Message To Canada, Stop Tar Sands At The Source Washington DC – Northern Plains Tribal leaders and land owners representing the Cowboy and Indian Alliance joined in cross-border solidarity yesterday with their First Nations counterparts on the steps of the Canadian embassy. Their aim was to send a clear message to the Canadian and US governments to Honor the Treaties.
Since the 1990 Kanehsatà:ke Siege or the 1990 “Oka Crisis”, the term “warrior” has been bantered around liberally to refer to those who protest, protectors of the land, those who speak out publicly against oppressive colonial laws and, in particular, those who are arrested during protests. ’Warrior’ seems to have become an overused word in the Indigenous resistance movement. There are various connotations to this word within Indigenous languages, but it is important to note the interpretation of this word by the authorities.