THREATS BY U.S.-BIA HOPI POLICE AND RANGERS TO TAKE AWAY MORE DINEH PROPERTY
Red Lake, Black Mesa – February 9, 2012 – It has been just over two weeks ago that these U.S. backed tactics of harassment and assault were committed by deputized Indian authorities. Back in late January and under the direction of the progressive and BIA supported Hopi tribal government, 75 animals were seized and taken for impoundment. This operation was done using new tactics by first marketing the potential number of animals for slaughter then carry out a deliberate stealing of animals.
Again, America and its modern Indians like the Navajo Nation government continue to stand by and watch these last traditional indigenous peoples lose their economic stability and securities by force.
Two traditional Dineh (Navajos) home sites were just informed that “all” animals ranging on their ancestral lands, which the U.S. government partitioned as “Hopi Lands” in 1977, will be confiscated. Elder matriarch, Rena Lane, lives by herself and is a long-time, sovereign resister who has lived with such intimidations and assaults, and now she may face the final assault. She broke a couple of fingers and dislocated her wrist about 12 years ago in a scuffle with the police while she was trying to protect her animals. The police only responded to the doctor’s claim of her injury by stating, “it was her own over reaction by jumping into the livestock trailer that caused her own self injury.” How would you react if you were at your own bank and saw the police literally withdrawing from your account? Matriarch and elder, Rena B. Lane (L), when her fingers were injured, and Sovereign resister means that she never gave-in to the U.S. coercion to sign up for Relocation benefits or the Accommodation Agreement. Note (R) her home site still intact as the original and in need of repair which the government prohibits also.
Traditional resisters of Big Mountain and surrounding areas live completely isolated due to hundreds of their neighbors’ force relocation. That has made it convenient for the U.S. and its BIA Indians to carry out assaults and harassment. These gestapo methods of authority continue to justify their actions as legal enforcements against the Dineh and their non-Native guests because ‘the law’ sees them as trespassers, as well as their animal properties being trespassers, too.
The relocation laws of 1974 and its final forced-coercion law of 1996 (The Accommodation Agreement) are all completely based on force methods that includes overlooking human and religious rights. Dineh once attained a high level of prosperity during the American Depression period in the early 20th Century, and this happened by a full recovery to nationhood immediately after their military imprisonment 40 years before. At Big Mountain, that prosperity of self-sufficiency, cultural richness and community consolidation lasted into the 1970s, and as they resisted certain American modernization. The enforcement of the law of 1974 was an Executive Order which meant that any agency whether tribal, state or federal can utilize any means to establish control over this Dineh population and its “former” territories.
Normally, the popular media and its official statements will only indicate a limited total of Indians affected by this “voluntary” relocation and the tax-payers’ cost amount are usually associated with the appointed Relocation Commission’s progress reports. America and the world are not informed about the numbers of displaced individuals or individuals that lost ancestral grazing range due to the partitioning.
Another interesting factor the news intentional do not report are the amount of tax-payer dollars that have gone into the tri-agency law enforcement operations, equipment, upgrades, attempted prosecution, restructuring of tribal courts and policing, and surveillance. These are the defining elements of the gestapo methods of assaults that are being committed in an isolated region --of another Indian reservation. These methods are assaults because it intentionally ignores universal human rights (In the U.S.ofA!), intrude onto 85 year old, non-English speaking elders’ traditional homes, speak to them in English and issue them warnings written in English, their English speaking non-Native guest are threaten not to take pictures or come near, and eventually the animals are confiscated without their knowledge.
Just imagine your grandmother or grandfather in their late 80s and the city PD shows up with four squad cars, each officer is armed and with a pepper spray, a Taser and night stick at-the-ready. On standby at a near distance are the county deputies and the sheriff, and also the FBI and the U.S. Marshall may have been notified about this operation. Your grandparents are then informed to give up all the family treasures and write out a check so that their retirement savings are drained.
How will you act? What can be done also to save and protect this indigenous (American) treasure, the endangered traditional peoples of Big Mountain? This genocide and injustice certainly cannot be allowed to continue and its time that tax-payer dollars go toward appropriate human and community development rather than paving the way for fossil fuel extraction. These lands are not “legally” Hopi lands because just look at the America way of real estate management that is intertwined with mega-corporations like Peabody Energy BTU. Just understand globalization and do you really think the U.S. government is going to accommodate a few little Hopi Indians with prime real estate properties?
You are wanted to take action on behalf of saving humanity and its eco-systems. Join Dineh elders or make demand to the responsible agencies to halt all inhuman enforcement of corporate laws upon an endangered indigenous lands.
© Written by Bahe Y. Katenay, SheepDogNation Media, 2012