Indigenous women of Standing Rock issue heartbreaking plea for
help ahead of evacuation
- By Claire
- February 21, 2017
- With just over a day to go before the evacuation deadline arrives at
North Dakota's Oceti Sakowin camp, protesters at the Standing Rock Indian
Reservation have issued a plea: Come help — now.
- In a viral video shared by social justice journalist
Shaun King on Monday, a group of indigenous women remind viewers that
demonstrations against the Dakota Access pipeline are about much more
than a single issue. They're about clean water,
treaty rights and the rights of future generations.
- "In the history of colonization, they've always given us two
options: Give up our land or go to jail. Give up our rights or go to
jail," one woman says in the video. "And now, give up our water
or go to jail. We are not criminals."
- Monthslong demonstrations at Standing Rock are scheduled to end
Wednesday; the United States Army Corps of Engineers and North Dakota
Gov. Doug Burgum have issued an evacuation order for the morning of Feb.
22, according to the official
website for the Oceti Sakowin camp.
- Peaceful protesters gathered there
seemed to score a victory in early December, when the Army Corps of
Engineers denied a permit that would have allowed construction of the
Dakota Access pipeline to continue along its previously planned route,
under Lake Oahe. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe opposed the pipeline on
the grounds that it threatened ancient tribal lands and could pollute a
crucial water source, the Missouri River.
- Fireworks over Oceti Sakowin on Dec. 4, 2016 as demonstrators
celebrate the decision to effectively halt construction on the Dakota
Access Pipeline.Source: Scott
- Yet the companies funding DAPL construction, Energy Transfer Partners
andÂ Sunoco Logistics Partners,
immediately vowed they would not back down. Many Standing Rock
demonstrators, meanwhile, were skeptical of the decision to halt the
decided to stay, even as blizzards battered Oceti Sakowin camp.
- The skepticism was warranted: Within his first week in office,
Trump — formerly a
shareholder in Energy Transfer Partners — signed two
executive orders enabling resumed construction of both DAPL and the
Keystone XL pipeline. According to King's tweet, protesters are currently
"surrounded by militarized police" who will
enter the camp Wednesday and evacuate protesters.
- The women in the video urge supporters to come stand with Standing
Rock, and fast.