Saturday, December 22, 2007

Declaration

A Lakota organization, that includes AIM founder Russell Means, are apparently declaring (or re-affirming) their independence from the US. How serious are they? The A Declaration of Independence from the USA reads as follows:
Lakota Sioux Indian representatives declared sovereign nation status today in Washington D.C. following Monday's withdrawal from all previously signed treaties with the United States Government.

The withdrawal, hand delivered to Daniel Turner, Deputy Director of Public Liaison at the State Department, immediately and irrevocably ends all agreements between the Lakota Sioux Nation of Indians and the United States Government outlined in the 1851 and 1868 Treaties at Fort Laramie Wyoming.

"This is an historic day for our Lakota people," declared Russell Means, Itacan of Lakota. "United States colonial rule is at its end!"

"Today is a historic day and our forefathers speak through us. Our Forefathers made the treaties in good faith with the sacred Canupa and with the knowledge of the Great Spirit," shared Garry Rowland from Wounded Knee. "They never honored the treaties, that's the reason we are here today."

The four member Lakota delegation traveled to Washington D.C. culminating years of internal discussion among treaty representatives of the various Lakota communities. Delegation members included well known activist and actor Russell Means, Women of All Red Nations (WARN) founder Phyllis Young, Oglala Lakota Strong Heart Society leader Duane Martin Sr., and Garry Rowland, Leader Chief Big Foot Riders. Means, Rowland, Martin Sr. were all members of the 1973 Wounded Knee takeover.

"In order to stop the continuous taking of our resources ñ people, land, water and children- we have no choice but to claim our own destiny," said Phyllis Young, a former Indigenous representative to the United Nations and representative from Standing Rock. Property ownership in the five state area of Lakota now takes center stage. Parts of North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming and Montana have been illegally homesteaded for years despite knowledge of Lakota as predecessor sovereign [historic owner]. Lakota representatives say if the United States does not enter into immediate diplomatic negotiations, liens will be filed on real estate transactions in the five state region, clouding title over literally thousands of square miles of land and property. Young added, "The actions of Lakota are not intended to embarrass the United States but to simply save the lives of our people".

Following Monday's withdrawal at the State Department, the four Lakota Itacan representatives have been meeting with foreign embassy officials in order to hasten their official return to the Family of Nations. Lakota's efforts are gaining traction as Bolivia, home to Indigenous President Evo Morales, shared they are "very, very interested in the Lakota case" while Venezuela received the Lakota delegation with "respect and solidarity."

"Our meetings have been fruitful and we hope to work with these countries for better relations," explained Garry Rowland. "As a nation, we have equal status within the national community."

Education, energy and justice now take top priority in emerging Lakota. "Cultural immersion education is crucial as a next step to protect our language, culture and sovereignty," said Means. "Energy independence using solar, wind, geothermal, and sugar beets enables Lakota to protect our freedom and provide electricity and heating to our people."

The Lakota reservations are among the most impoverished areas in North America, a shameful legacy of broken treaties and apartheid policies. Lakota has the highest death rate in the United States and Lakota men have the lowest life expectancy of any nation on earth, excluding AIDS, at approximately 44 years. Lakota infant mortality rate is five times the United States average and teen suicide rates 150% more than national average. 97% of Lakota people live below the poverty line and unemployment hovers near 85%.

"After 150 years of colonial enforcement, when you back people into a corner there is only one alternative," emphasized Duane Martin Sr. "The only alternative is to bring freedom into its existence by taking it back to the love of freedom, to our lifeway."

We are the freedom loving Lakota from the Sioux Indian reservations of Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Montana who have traveled to Washington DC to withdraw from the constitutionally mandated treaties to become a free and independent country. We are alerting the Family of Nations we have now reassumed our freedom and independence with the backing of Natural, International, and United States law.

For more information, please visit our new website at http://www.lakotafreedom.com/.

Lakota
444 Crazy Horse Drive, P.O. Box 99;
Porcupine, SD 57772
See also Here.

People living in grinding poverty have no great love for government that does nothing, yet bleeds them dry. Passive genocide is slower. US Indian Reservations are generally rural ghettos few leave by any other means than joining the military. Will the point be missed? Will a number of individuals renounce US citizenship? How many will be veterans? How will the Federal Government react? You can bet it will probably do the wrong thing.

2 comments:

Civil Disobedience said...

"Our meetings have been fruitful and we hope to work with these countries for better relations," explained Garry Rowland. "As a nation, we have equal status within the national community."

The question is thus begged what does equal status within the national community afford? Industrialized, Developed, Non-Industrial, and Un-developed nations are supposedly equal in status dependent on representation in founding laws, institutions, coalitions, committees, and regulatory strands.

Equal status is afforded through the resources and leverages the sovereign nation seeks to exercise. This leverage in the Lakota Sioux Indian Tribe includes property, geography, and land use occupation.

Property leverage is enhanced with mineral resources available for extraction by its sovereign neighbor, the United States. Geographic leverage is enhanced insofar as the reservation occupies areas either en-route or within the scope of designated interests. Land Use occupation leverage is enhanced insofar as families have no other resources available to include their sovereign country’s relocation assistance.

The affectation wielded by these respective levers is both political in that it represents national splintering as well as economic in that it represents both a barrier to resource exploitation and geographic accessibility.

According to the statistics inferring quality of life on the Lakota Sioux Reservation, to implement sustainable, unrelenting, static, and fractious mechanisms for maintaining sovereignty becomes a potentially risky endeavor if the goal is that of enhancing the tribe’s quality of life. These leverages thus become valued according to their effectiveness in alleviating the United State’s historical failure to follow through with the binding agreements inherent in the treaty articles.

With this leverage is the statistical possibility of the US revocation of federal aid, emergence of formal territorial borders of non-convergence and limited passage, and the erection of barriers to free trade and employment, citizenship, and assistance; all legislative resources afford the US in international relations. The economic, social and environmental development of the tribe and the reservation, per worst case scenario, could thus become dependent on the Lakota Sioux’ resources of which appear to be debatable.

Lakota Sioux quality of life as afforded by the tribe’s own internal resources and reportedly ineffective treaty articles with the United States has achieved little. The Lakota Sioux site refers to issues of high mortality rates, high incarceration rates, high drug and alcohol addiction rates, rampant disease, rampant poverty, inadequate to unavailable housing, with the prospect of a diminished if not a non-evident sustained historical culture.

Phyllis Young, a former Indigenous representative to the United Nations and representative from Standing Rock is quoted as stating that it is not the tribe’s responsibility to take back its destiny. Sovereignty and Destiny do not mitigate the need for interdependence in the current conditions reported to exist on the Lakota Sioux reservation. Terminating the treaties appears to exist within the wake of the historical observation of the US’s failure to comply with the treaties conditions. To back away from apparent US apathy does not in and of itself necessarily provoke investment.

The classical approach to diplomacy is the leveraging of the sovereign nation’s interest in international relations. The ideological approach to diplomacy is leveraging mutual interests in the hope to achieve a universal ideological end. In the classical approach the US and the Lakota Sioux will pursuit their own respective interests, and agree where these points converge. In the ideological approach the US and the Lakota Sioux will pursuit the universal ideological interests with the intent to level the playing field.

With the reported history of the US failure to remain compliant with the Lakota Sioux treaty article the ideological perspective becomes suspect and the classical approach becomes more apparent. This has this reader very much concerned about the welfare of the Lakota Sioux and their ability to negotiate powerfully with the United States government which has historically remained largely ambivalent, at least in conduct.

SRL said...

It would be interesting to know whether anyone actually believes a separate sovereign state would have any better luck with respect to the federal government. In many parts of the world, adoption of the modern state model has let to chaos and disintegration. Why not break away with a declaration of individual sovereignty, which is most like the life of old?