Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Dakota Access Pipeline

The Indigenous Nations struggle against the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) is shaping up to be an Occupy-Wall-Street-type of narrative-altering event.

Jeremy Scahill speaking yesterday on Democracy Now! gathered some of the threads together:
JEREMY SCAHILL: Well, I mean—well, first of all, let’s remember that we’re speaking a week when there’s the big American holiday, Thanksgiving, and I always think of the slaughter of the indigenous people in this country around this time of year and people like Leonard Peltier, the political prisoner who—unfortunately, it seems like yet another president is going to leave office without pardoning Leonard Peltier. But to watch what we’re seeing come out of the protesters on this—the protectors on this indigenous land, facing down against environmental-destroying companies, you know, really brings home the kind of utter hypocrisy of the narrative about the United States of America. But also, if you look at the way that these indigenous people and their supporters are being treated versus the Bundy ranchers, you know, who didn’t occupy their native land—they went and they took over federal land with weapons and ended up getting acquitted, including of the charges that they were very clearly guilty of, which is all these weapons possession charges—and it makes you wonder, if this is the state of affairs under President Obama, who actually has visited Native reservations and Native territories, what’s going to happen under Trump?
And this firm, TigerSwan, was founded by a Delta Force operative named James Reese and has done voluminous amounts of covert and overt work for the U.S. military in Iraq, in Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world. And, you know, you realize that you have this convergence of all that has been so wrong in the post-9/11 world, with these big environment-destroying companies, the stripping even further of indigenous rights, private security forces, the brutality against protesters, the paramilitarization of law enforcement. And now our incoming president—I still feel strange saying that—Donald Trump also has business connections to the pipeline project? Is he going to divest? Is he going to—I mean, like, this is going to go from the level of Obama just being, you know, really bad on these policies to Trump actively trying to make it worse for the environment.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Well, in a recent interview, the head of the company behind the Dakota Access pipeline, Kelcy Warren of Energy Transfer Partners, said he’s 100 percent confident that Trump will support the completion of the Dakota Access pipeline. Kelcy Warren has donated more than $100,000 to Trump’s campaign, while Trump himself gas between $500,000 and a million dollars invested in Energy Transfer Partners, according to his own disclosures.
Sunday night water cannons and tear gas were unleashed on the Standing Rock water protectors.

The Trump election proved that old, rural cracker America is still alive and kicking, and that white working-class resentment is refulgent. The DAPL fight will test the mojo of this renascent Confederate States of America. The Standing Rock Sioux must win -- to affirm the rights of native people, to embolden future environmental direct action, to strike a blow at devouring corporations and their militarized police forces.

Even The New York Times has come down on the side of the water protectors, posting an excellent video, "One Man's Fear for Standing Rock," and publishing an editorial, "Keeping the Drillers From Sacred Grounds," in the Sunday edition.

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