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What We’re Reading: #NoDAPL Occupation at Standing Rock

Photo: / AFSC

In April, members of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe gathered outside a North Dakota town called Cannon Ball to stop the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Since then, they have been joined by hundreds from other tribes, as well as allies from across the country. If completed, the pipeline would cost $3.7 billion and cover over 1,170 miles of land. Its construction would destroy native land and the pipeline could threaten the environment and water supply of millions of people.

Here’s what we’re reading to learn more:

'We are protectors, not protesters': why I'm fighting the North Dakota pipeline, by Iyuskin American Horse, via the Guardian

"The fact that Energy Transfer Partners, the company behind the pipeline, would use the word 'Dakota,' which means 'friend' or 'ally,' in the name of its project is disrespectful. This pipeline is a direct threat to all Dakota, Lakota, and Nakota people, especially our future generations. And we are not the only ones. We know that burning this oil is changing our climate and Indigenous people all over the world are bearing the brunt of the catastrophes that causes."


From #NoDAPL to #FreedomSquare: A tale of two occupations, by Kelly Hayes, Truthout

"Chicago's Black organizers are aware that Natives are likewise struggling, both with police violence and threats to their life-giving water supplies. 'The fight to prevent the pipeline from encroaching on Native land illustrates the ways in which the horrible legacy of genocide against our Indigenous family continues to be resisted,' Black Lives Matter Chicago organizer Aislinn Pulley explained in an interview. 'Like the fight for Black lives, the fight for Indigenous rights reflects a struggle for self-determination,' says Pulley. 'The foundation of American empire required the erasure of both Indigenous and Black humanity. These fights for liberation are intrinsically linked, and [that] is why we continue to stand in unflinching solidarity with our Indigenous family.'"


These are the inspiring Native American activists fighting a North Dakota oil pipeline, by Rafi Schwartz, via Fusion

 "For months, protests against the pipeline have grown along the construction site, resulting in a number of confrontations with local law enforcement. Efforts to halt construction through the court system have moved ahead, with a ruling expected by Sept. 9. With chants of 'You can’t drink oil! Keep it in the soil!' the protesters, many of whom belong to a number of different Native tribes, have come from around the country. Many are young, engaged and eager to embrace their indigenous identity."


Standing Rock Sioux Chairman: Dakota Access Pipeline "is threatening the lives of my tribe", via Democracy Now

"Debra White Plume: 'The need to protect this water has grown way beyond Standing Rock. I'm Oglala and Northern Cheyenne. Many red nations are here. Many more red nations are coming. We put the call out for water protectors to come, land defenders to come. And the word 'resistance' is being used. And sometimes we have a problem with the English language, deciding which word to use, but if we just listen to our spirits, we're here to protect sacred water. People will come from all along the river to protect the river that they belong to.'"


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