Friday, May 07, 2010


There have been many commemorations this week of the killings at Kent State.  Forty years ago student strikes were underway everywhere.  Forty years ago last night, I was at a demonstration that trashed the ROTC building at the University of Kansas.  

(Pictured here: Orangeburg, 1968)

 Before Kent State was Orangeburg.  After Kent State was Jackson State.  Black students were killed at Orangeburg.  Black students were killed at Jackson State.  There was not a nationwide student strike.  A few of us took notice of both, but since the students weren't white, well, the media and most others sort of yawned and said little.

The difference between the reactions to these three events is painful and it is racist.  Bringing this up does nothing to disparage those killed at Kent State or the response to the killings.  Bringing it up does point out how the racial divide in America divides pretty much everything...even the authorities gunning down students.

Kent State was a shock to America because white students weren't supposed to be the recipients of deadly force.  That was supposed to be reserved for Black students, and Black Panthers...Blacks.

The murders at Orangeburg and the silence of most in reply helped set up the atmosphere that led to many more murders.

So while you are remembering Kent State...


The following is from Black Commentator.

Kent State, Jackson State, Race and Resistance
by Bill Fletcher, Jr.

2010 seems to be the year for anniversaries, and the killings that took place at Kent State University (Ohio) and two weeks later at Jackson State College (Mississippi) are two that will go down in infamy.

It is difficult for me to forget May 1970.  When word spread about the inexcusable murders of the anti-Vietnam War student protesters at Kent State, the USA just about exploded.  As a high school activist at the time, discussions took place all afternoon when we heard about the killings leading me and another African American student to call a meeting for immediately after school to plan a response.

That meeting and its aftermath taught me a great deal about activism.  Let me set the stage.  The meeting was chaired by me and the other African American activist.  It was small, but diverse.  Several white self-proclaimed anarchist students played a very disruptive role, challenging the fact that the meeting had any leadership.  By the end of the meeting it was agreed that there would be a follow up meeting that evening at the home of one of the white students to develop more in depth plans.

That evening I got to the meeting place on time only to discover that the meeting had already started and that plans were moving forward without my involvement or my co-chair from the earlier meeting.  It was amazing in that the fact that we had called the earlier meeting was completely ignored, to the point that it was almost as if the earlier meeting had never happened.

In any case, a plan was developed for a student strike and march on City Hall.  This was successfully accomplished with the high school, for all intents and purposes, shut down.  Our school joined with countless others across the country protesting the US invasion of Cambodia/Kampuchea and the killings at Kent State.  The leadership of the march—of which I was not apart given the ‘coup’ that had taken place—had no plans for what should happen afterwards.  We marched, rallied, and…then were sent home.

A couple of weeks later word spread regarding the killings of two Black students at Jackson State College (now University).  These students had been protesting the killings at Kent State, the Vietnam War and the racist harassment that Black students had been receiving.  The police responded to the protest with bullets and the murder of two students, an act that was broadly condemned.
Yet, here is the punch-line:  there were no massive student strikes.  At my high school several Black student activists, most of us allied with the Black Panther Party, went throughout the school agitating for a walkout or, at least, a protest.  Our cries met with little response.  In my mind’s eye I can see one of our leaders addressing students in the cafeteria calling upon them to respond to these murders, only to be largely ignored.

The lack of response to Jackson State was not isolated to my high school.  While it was certainly the case that there were responses, none of it came close to mirroring the response to the Kent State killings.  Much was made of this at the time, and then, as weeks became months, and months became years, Jackson State was largely forgotten.

The contrasting responses to Kent State and Jackson State said so much about race in the USA, and it will be interesting to see to what extent any attention is actually focused on Jackson State this May 2010.  As too often happens, Black, Brown, Yellow and Red death at the hands of the forces of law and order may be viewed as unfortunate, if not tragic, but to a great extent not a source of outrage by white America.  The killings and woundings at Kent State were, simply put, not supposed to happen to good white students.  That the shootings could never be properly explained by the authorities compounded the problem for the entire country.  The murders at Jackson State, just as with the murders two years earlier at Orangeburg, South Carolina and two years later at Southern University in New Orleans, were the killings of faceless individuals who, in the minds of far too many white Americans, simply should not have placed themselves in harm’s way.

What white America could largely not accept was that Kent State happened because the Orangeburg Massacre had been permitted to take place.  The relative silence in the face of such a profound police injustice as was the Orangeburg Massacre of 1968 provided the grounding that made other such police atrocities possible.  Inevitably that would spill over into white America.  Yet, to the extent to which white America saw Kent State in isolation, it ignored it as part of a larger problem of police violence and state repression.  To put it another way, the outrage against the killings at Kent State was quite sincere, but it was outrage within a bottle that saw in such an atrocity an aberration from a system that was largely fair and just.  Thus, Jackson State was not seen as a continuation of state repression and police violence but more an example of the particular and peculiar forms of interaction that exist between Black America and the police in the USA, at least from the standpoint of too many white Americans, including otherwise liberal and progressive whites.

As we commemorate the Kent State killings, we should do the same for those who lost their lives at Jackson State.  We should use this as a moment to discuss political repression in the USA, and the particular form that it takes when targeted at the activities of people of color.  The frustration and dismay that I saw on the face of the Black student activist who appealed—in vain—to his fellow students in our high school cafeteria to walk out in protest over Jackson State goes to the split that exists in a broad progressive movement in the USA: a movement so necessary to take on corporate America and the political Right, yet a movement that can only do so to the extent to which it truly recognizes that an injury to one is an injury to all. Editorial Board member, Bill Fletcher, Jr., is a Senior Scholar with the Institute for Policy Studies, the immediate past president of TransAfrica Forum and co-author of, Solidarity Divided: The Crisis in Organized Labor and a New Path toward Social Justice   (University of California Press), which examines the crisis of organized labor in the USA. Click here to contact Mr. Fletcher.

Thursday, May 06, 2010


Rounding out my Greek related posts today is a statement from a number of Anarchist Communist organizations. Greece, the statement says, " a test case for the social dismantling that awaits us all." following is from A-Infos.

Statement on the Greek crisis of Anarchist Communist organizations - Solidarity with the Greek workers' struggle!
Date Thu, 06 May 2010 19:55:41 +0300

Greece is a test case for the social dismantling that awaits us all. This policy is being enacted by all the institutional parties, by every government and by all of globalised capitalism's institutions. There is only one way to hold back this policy of barbaric capitalism: popular direct action, to widen the strike movement and increase the number of demonstrations all across Europe. ---- SOLIDARITY WITH THE GREEK WORKERS' STRUGGLE! The Greek working class is angry, and with good reason, with the attempt to load responsibility for the bankruptcy of the Greek State onto their shoulders. We maintain instead that it is the international financial institutions and the European Union who are responsible. The financial institutions have plunged the world, and Greece in particular, into an economic and social crisis of historical proportions, forcing countries into debt, and now these same institutions are complaining that certain States risk not being able to repay their debts.

We denounce this hypocrisy and say that even if Greece - and all the other countries - can repay the debt, they should not do so: it is up to those responsible for the crisis - the financial institutions, not the - to pay for the damage caused by this crisis. The Greek workers are right to refuse to pay back their country's debt. We refuse to pay for their crisis!

Instead, let us shift the capitalists into the firing line: Greek capital generates some of the biggest profit margins in Europe due to its investments in the poorer Balkan countries, the absence of social protections, collective guarantees and a minimum wage for Greek workers, not to mention the country's gigantic black economy in labour and an even greater exploitation of immigrant work. Greek capital is also very lightly taxed, due to the weakness of the State (with regard to the rich) and major corruption which permits fraud and tax evasion on a massive scale. So it is equally up to Greek capitalists to pay for this crisis.

We also denounce the attitude of the European Union. The EU was presented to us as a supposed guarantee of peace and solidarity between the peoples, but now it is showing its true face - that of acting as an unconditional prop for neoliberalism, in a complete denial of the notion of democracy. As soon as an economy becomes mired in difficulties, all pretence of solidarity evaporates. So we see Greece being scolded and accused of laxity, with insulting language bordering on racism. The "Europe which protects us" that liberals and social-democrats extolled at the time of the scandalous forced adoption of the Lisbon Treaty (particularly in France and Ireland) now seems a long way away.

As far as actual protection goes, the EU and the financial institutions have combined their efforts to frog-march Greece towards the forced dismantling of public services, through austerity plans that recall the "Stuctural Adjustment Plans" of the IMF: the non-replacement of staff, wage freezes, privatisations and VAT increases. Today the EU is demanding that the retirement age be moved back to 67, not only in Greece but also in other countries, and is also threatening to dismantle the social welfare system. In this way they are opening new markets for investors, while guaranteeing the assets of rich investors, to the detriment of the basic interests of the working class. It is a Europe of the ruling class, and one which we must all work together to oppose.

This is why we call for participation throughout Europe in solidarity initiatives with the Greek working class and with future victims of the onslaught of the banks.

Against the values of greed and rapacity that the European Union is based on, let us respond with class solidarity! Greece is a test case for the social dismantling that awaits us all. This policy is being enacted by all the institutional parties, from out-and-out bourgeois to liberals and social democrats, by every government and by all of globalised capitalism's institutions. There is only one way to hold back this policy of barbaric capitalism: popular direct action, to widen the strike movement and increase the number of demonstrations all across Europe.
Solidarity with the Greek workers' struggle!

Alternative Libertaire (France)
Workers Solidarity Movement (Ireland)
Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici (Italy)
Organisation Socialiste Libertaire (Switzerland)
Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (South Africa)

6 May 2010


A demonstrator clashes with riot police outside the Greek parliament in Athens.
(A demonstrator clashes with riot police outside the Greek parliament in Athens. Photo: REUTERS/Yiorgos Karahalis)
Greece tonight. Police attack demonstrators as "austerity" bill is passed.

Earlier, angry Greeks banging drums, shouting anti-government slogans, unfurled a giant black banner outside parliament as the vote took place. More than 30,000 demonstrators filled downtown streets, chanting "They
declared war. Now fight back."

Again, from After the Greek Riots.

#282 Protest in front of the parliament

7,000-8,000 protesters gathered in the parliament square (Syntagma) again tonight, while in the parliament PASOK government's parliamentary majority together with the extreme right-wing party LAOS were approving their own (and IMF's)  new measures.

Without any obvious reason  riot police attacked to the protesters at about 21:30 local time. A lot of protesters were beaten and some people were detained.  Some of the protesters are currently gathering in the Polytechnic School building in Patision avenue, while smaller gatherings are reorganised around Syntagma Sq. at the same time police violence in the streets of Athens still carries on with protesters being beaten up.

This was written by admin. Posted on Thursday, May 6, 2010, at 10:11 pm.


Tin soldiers and the Greek government is falling. Three bank workers died inside a firebombed bank yesterday in the midst of huge demonstrations of workers. The police were quick to finger hooded anarchist youths as the culprits. There is more to the usual.

(On the streets of Greece ordinary citizens worry about the future - from AFP)

The following is from After the Greek Riots which I think originates with Occupied London.

#280 | Statement by the Skaramanga squat in Athens regarding today's (note: actually yesterday's) events: The murderers "mourn" their victims

The statement below was issued a few hours ago by the anarchist squat of Skaramanga and Patision in Athens.

The murderers "mourn" their victims

(Regarding today's tragic death of 3 people)

The enormous strike demonstration which took place today, 5th of May turned into a social outflow of rage. At least 200,000 people of all ages took to the streets (employees and unemployed, in the public and private sector, locals and migrants) attempting, over many hours and in consecutive waves, to surround and to take over the Parliament. The forces of repression came out in full force, to play their familiar role – that is, of the protection of the political and financial authorities. The clashes were hours long and extensive. The political system and its institutions reached a nadir.

However, in the midst of all this, a tragic event that no words can possibly describe took place: 3 people died from infusions at the branch of Marfin Bank on Stadiou Avenue, which was set ablaze.

The state and the entire journalistic riff-raff, without any shame toward the dead or their close ones, spoke from the very first moment about some "murderer-hooded up youths", trying to take advantage of the event, in order to calm the wave of social rage that had erupted and to recover their authority that had been torn apart; to impose once again a police occupation of the streets, to wipe out sources of social resistance and disobedience against state terrorism and capitalist barbarity. For this reason, during the last few hours the police forces have been marching through the center of Athens, they have conducted hundreds of detentions and they raided – with shootings and stun-grenades – the anarchist occupation "space of united multiform action" on Zaimi street and the "migrant haunt" on Tsamadou Street, causing extensive damage (both these places are in the Exarcheia neighbourhood of Athens). At the same time the threat of a violent police eviction is hanging over the rest of the self-organised spaces (occupations and haunts) after the Prime-ministerial speech which referred to soon-to-come raids for the arrest of the "murderers".

The governors, governmental officials, their political personnel, the TV-mouthpieces and the salaried hack writers attempt in this way to purify their regime and the criminalise the anarchists and every unpatronised voice of struggle. As if there would ever be the slightest of chances that whoever attacked the bank (provided the official scenario stands) would possibly know there were people inside, and that they would torch it alight regardless. They seem to confuse the people in struggle for themselves: them who without any hesitation hand over the entire society to the deepest pillage and enslaving, who order their praetorians to attack without hesitation and to aim and shoot to kill, them who have lead three people to suicide in the past week alone, due to financial debts.

The truth is that the real murderer, the real instigator of today's tragic death of 3 people is "mister" Vgenopoulos, who used the usual employers' blackmailing (the threat of sacking) and forced his employees to work in the branches of his bank during a day of strike – and even in a branch like the one of Stadiou Avenue, where the strike's demonstration would pass through. Such blackmailing is known only too well by anyone experiencing the terrorism of salaried slavery on an everyday level. We are awaiting to see what excuses Vgenopoulos will come up with for the relatives of the victims and for the society as a whole – this ultra-capitalist now hinted by some centers of power as the next prime minister in a future "national unity government" that could follow the expected, complete collapse of the political system.

If an unprecedented strike can ever be a murderer…

If an unprecedented demonstration, in an unprecedented crisis, can ever be a murderer…

If open social spaces that are alive and public can ever be murderers…

If the state can impose a curfew and attack demonstrators under the pretext of arresting murderers…

If Vgenopoulos can detain his employees inside a bank – that is, a primary social enemy and target for demonstrators…

…it is because authority, this serial murderer, wants to slaughter upon its birth a revolt which questions the supposed solution of an even harsher attack on society, of an even larger pillage by capital, of an even thirstier sucking of our blood.

…it is because the future of the revolt does not include politicians and bosses, police and mass media.

… it is because behind their much-advertised "only" solution, there is a solution that does not speak of development rates and unemployment but rather, it speaks of solidarity, self-organising and human relationships.

When asking who are the murderers of life, of freedom, of dignity, the ferments of authority and capital, they and their tuft hunters only need to take a look at their own selves. Today and every day.





from the open assembly of the evening of 5/5/2010

Wednesday, May 05, 2010


Seldom get to post a "win." Here is one. Temple nurses and allied health workers whupped Temple University Hospital and their scabs...and wrapped up their strike last week.

 Nice video...

The following is from Labor Blog.

WATCH: Temple Nurses and Allied Professionals Reflect on Their Victory

 Leading up to the recent strike at Temple University Hospital, Carolyn Humphries, a GI technician at the hospital and member of PASNAP, studied video-making and citizen journalism.  She wanted to tell the powerful stories and experiences of she and her coworkers as they stood up to Temple's Administration on behalf of their patients.

Throughout the strike Carolyn reported on the struggle, in an effort to keep up morale at the picket line and rally deep and widespread community support.

Now, she shares their story of victory and reflections from their struggle.

And next is a nice article from Workers World.

Temple Hospital nurses win 4-week strike Betsey Piette

After four weeks on the picket line, 1,500 nurses and allied professional workers at Temple University Hospital forced management to back down on contract proposals that demanded severe concessions from the workers. The nurses' victory in this confrontation strikes a blow for all workers who face concessions in upcoming contracts.

The four weeks of strike were marked by many public demonstrations of support from students, community and many unions on behalf of the nurses. Meanwhile, management hired scabs in an attempt to break the strike.

After management backed down, the final agreement was overwhelmingly approved on April 28 by 97 percent of the membership of the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals, representing striking workers.

Union representatives charged management with provoking the strike by attempting to weaken the union and prohibit staff from speaking out on behalf of patients. Instead of caving in to management pressure, the multi-national workforce remained unified and strong. The nurses forced management to move from their "last, best offer" presented in September 2009 to agree to a contract much more in line with what the union was asking for.

Management withdrew most provisions of its "best offer" from the final package. This included a gag order that would have prevented workers from speaking out on behalf of patients. Also withdrawn were provisions that would have weakened the union, including a proposal to eliminate union shop and separate the registered nurses and professional/technical unions' shared contract expiration date.

The contract will also partially restore a benefit for tuition reimbursement for employee's dependents. While management had proposed a 4 percent salary increase in the last year of a three-year contract, the final contract provides for 7.5 percent raises over three years, plus an $800 signing bonus. Temple management also withdrew its proposal to cut the additional pay for weekends and non-day shifts.

Victory belongs to all workers    
The awareness among the TUH workers, who are scheduled to return to their jobs at 7 p.m. on April 30, is that their victory is shared by workers everywhere who are standing up against onslaughts from the bosses in the midst of the capitalist economic crisis. In turn, support from community organizations and other unions helped the nurses stand up to 28 days of management's attempts to break their union through the use of scab labor, who were given extremely high compensation.

Nurses and allied professional workers are preparing now to return to their jobs. As they do so, union officials say that because management's intransience provoked the strike, the whole thing should be considered a "lockout." In a lockout, workers should be eligible for unemployment compensation. Many workers have already filed unemployment claims.

The officials base their argument on the hospital's actions prior to the strike in March 2009. At that time, management cancelled an existing tuition reimbursement benefit for employees' dependents. This cancellation was a major sticking point in negotiations.

Temple management also wanted the union to drop its opposition to the hospital's appeal of a Pennsylvania Labor Department ruling that management had to pay up to $550,000 to fund back reimbursement payments. The union refused.

PASNAP executive director Bill Cruice said that Temple management's withdrawal of a previously existing benefit before the walkout changed the terms of the previous contract. Thus this changed the status quo and provoked the strike. Cruice explained that had management agreed to restore the benefit, workers would have stayed on the job.
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Tuesday, May 04, 2010


Happen to be hangin' in London. Well, there is a party you just won't want to miss. I'm talking "PARTY AT THE PUMPS PART 2."

Once more environmental groups UK Tar Sands Network, Rising Tide and the Camp for Climate Action are taking to the streets of London to protest against the catastrophic extraction of tar sands in... Canada.

Last month the groups targeted BP. This month it's Shell.

This is a Party you won't want to miss.

If you're hangin' in London...

The following is from Rising Tide.



When: Saturday, 15th May
Meet: 1PM at Oxford Circus
Bring: a zone 1-2 tube pass, noisemakers, your friends & family and your dancing shoes. Oxford Circus meeting point map

Shutting down a petrol station for 5 hours on a sunny Saturday afternoon was so much fun we're going to do it again. Shell's Hell – in the tar sands and beyond - is next in the firing line.

Party 1 had Samba, twin sound systems, a live Ceilidh band, face painting, free cakes and 200 people. Party 2 will be bigger and better, with activists joining us from Brighton, Oxford and beyond.
See here for a video of Party at the Pumps Part 1:

And for all you cyclists out there, there will be a special Party at the Pumps Critical Mass making its way to the party. Meet 1PM at Marble Arch (under the arch).

Get ready for sunshine, music, and dancing on the forecourt!

Why target Shell?

Party at the Pumps Part 2 is taking place just three days before Shell's AGM, where the company will come under fire from shareholders over its plans in the Canadian tar sands; and a week before the Merthyr to Mayo solidarity bike ride, which will link two communities in Wales and Ireland resisting fossil fuel extraction.

Party at the Pumps is in solidarity with communities around the world who are resisting Shell's destruction of lives and livelihoods, poisoning of lands and waters, and fuelling of climate chaos. In Northern Canada, Shell's tar sands projects are ignoring First Nations treaty rights, causing rare forms of cancer and killing wildlife ( In Rossport, Ireland, a dangerous onshore pipeline and massive refinery are transforming an area of\ outstanding natural beauty into an environmental disaster zone with serious public health and safety implications ( And in Nigeria, where Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight Ogoni colleagues were hung by the Nigerian state for campaigning against Shell's devastation of the Niger Delta, resistance to Shell and Big Oil continues (

These struggles may be happening in distant places, but they are driven from Shell HQ. On May 15th, we bring the resistance to the heart of London.

This action is jointly called by London Rising Tide/London Tar Sands Network and Climate Camp London.

BRIGHT SIDE OF THE PHOENIX SUNS for the Phoenix Suns. The NBA team plans to show support of their "neighbors" and in oppostiion to the Arizona's draconian new racist "immigration" law by wearing 'Los Suns' jerseys on Cinquo De Mayo. Suns players and management have been vocal in their opposition to the law as well.

The Suns are well aware that many of their fans won't think highly of the move, but they don't care. Owner Robert Sarver says it's being done not just in opposition to the law but also to honor the Latino community and the diversity of the NBA.

The Suns are currently involved in the NBA Play Offs.

The following is from "Bright Side of the Sun."

Steve Nash Calls Arizona Immigration Bill "Very Misguided"
by Seth Pollack
In an extremely bold move, the Phoenix Suns as an organization made a strong political statement in opposition to the recent Arizona immigration bill.

Discussions on taking action began last week after the bill passed, with an idea that came from Robert Sarver, Managing Partner of the Phoenix Suns.

According to Steve Kerr, the team discussed it internally before going to the league for approval to both wear the 'Los Suns' jerseys, but also to come out publicly in this way.

Kerr said both the NBA and the San Antonio Spurs were fully supportive of the Suns move.
Steve Nash wearing the Los Suns jersey.Ultimately, the decision was left up to the players, but in a locker room led by Steve Nash, it is no surprise how that turned out.

"I think the law is very misguided. I think it is unfortunately to the detriment to our society and our civil liberties and I think it is very important for us to stand up for things we believe in," Nash said of the bill. "I think the law obviously can target opportunities for racial profiling. Things we don't want to see and don't need to see in 2010."

Amare Stoudemire and Alvin Gentry also expressed their support for the decision with more of a focus on supporting their neighbors. "It's going to be great to wear Los Suns to let the Latin community know we're behind them 100%," Stoudemire said.

There's no question that this public move will receive considerable backlash in this state and likely among many Suns fans and perhaps even sponsors.

Steve Kerr tried to walk the line between the political implications by talking about the move as a way for an organization that is in the public eye to push the discussion.

"We want to celebrate the diversity that exists in our state and exists in the NBA. We know what's going on and we don't agree with the law itself," Kerr said.

Steven Nash was well aware of the perception the recent bill created for Arizona and that seemed to play a role in his decision, "It doesn't feel good to have people around the world and around the country look at our state as less than equal, less than fair. As proud citizen of this state, I want us to be held be held in the highest esteem. I think we have a lot of great attributes and a lot of great people and I think  we need to be very cautious in how we respect our civil liberties and the tone we're setting and the precedents we're setting moving forward."

Monday, May 03, 2010

LAKOTA STOP U.S. MILITARY HELICOPTERS FROM LANDING AT WOUNDED KNEE military helicopters attempted to land at Wounded Knee Saturday. They were part of some strange educational plan engineered between the tribal government and the national guard. However, no one had talked it over with residents of the area, many of whom are descendants from the hundreds of Lakota massacred by the U.S. Army at ...the site in 1890. Needless to say they weren't thrilled to see the choppers and they kept them from landing.

Debra Rincon Lopez commenting on the KOTA News web site wrote, "I don't understand why they do things such as this? It's bad enough that they display our ancestor's and artifacts in museum's. But, when they continously desecrate our burial grounds and their is still so many grave robberies happening.

They should have much more respect for our ancestor's and their burial grounds. Which are sacred places to us and our families. They shouldn't have to be told not to be doing things such as this, they should be automatically known and forbidden to do. We have all as Native people's been mistreated and put on display as attractions, now it's far time that they respect our wishes and not do things of this
manner to irritate our relations anymore and in the future."

The following is from Censored News.

Military Helicopters at Wounded Knee? Traditional Lakota Elders Say 'NO WAY!'
By Debra White Plume. May 1. 2010

Military helicopters approaching from the North could be seen by a crowd of 60 or so Lakota people, gathered at the base of the hill where victims of the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre lay buried in a mass grave. As the three black helicopters passed overhead and started to turn around, "Block the helicopters!" could be heard faintly, drowned out by the sound of thumping chopper blades and the harsh wind, words shouted by a grandmother. The people began to run toward the helicopters, which were nearing the mass grave.

Young men reached the hilltop first, carrying staffs adorned with eagle feathers and colored ribbon. Dozens of young children ran in groups up the hill, holding hands, some were carrying sage. The elders brought up the rear, escorted by several young men. The first helicopter landed a few feet from the mass grave. The Lakota men ran up to it, holding their staffs, yelling at the military to leave Wounded Knee, the elders did not want them there. As the other two helicopters began to descend, four women ran to get under the choppers, waving red banners and a United Nations flag. The helicopters came lower, the women did not budge. They yelled at the soldiers hanging out of the helicopters, "Leave, you are not wanted at Wounded Knee." The three black helicopters flew away.

"Military transport coming to Wounded Knee? Why, to intimidate us? I came here to talk about my family, but now I am thinking, I am 80 years old, I pray every day. The Chairlady said to come here and talk about our families, but for people to make money off of this place, they shouldn't do that. This is a place to pray, the military have no place here" said Stanley Looking Elk, an elder and former Tribal President.

Marie Not Help Him loudly questioned the people present, "Why are you doing this? I invited them here! My great grandfather Dewey Beard survived this. I wanted to tell our story," saying she belongs to the Wounded Knee Survivor's Association. She asked the Tribal Police on site to arrest the people. The Tribal Police declined to make arrests, but did step in when Not Help Him ran up to elder Wilma Thin Elk, shoving her finger into Mrs. Thin Elk's face, yelling. A young woman jumped in front of elder Thin Elk, and told Not Help Him to stop. Tribal Police intervened, escorting Not Help Him away from elder Thin Elk.

As the four carloads of Tribal Police attempted crowd control, yelling at people to disperse, Vic Camp stepped in front of the elders and women the police were trying to push back. "We are not here to argue against our own people, we are here to defend this killing ground from the military coming here. They don't belong on this land. They were already here. Our ancestors are lying in the ground over there because the US military was already here. Our people have a right to be here," Camp did not back away.

Olowan Martinez said, "The Tribe did not even tell us they were doing this, we found out last night, me and my children live right down the hill. The US military can go elsewhere to hear the story. Our ancestors at Wounded Knee were killed by the US military and my father, a Veteran of Wounded Knee 1973, lies buried there, they have no respect to come back to where they put the blood of our relatives on the ground."

"This is sacred ground, not a tourist attraction, they flew in and out like tourists. They already know what happened here, there was no good communication about this," said Alex White Plume, also an elder and former Tribal President, saying he supports the younger generation.

When the elders began speaking, several people asked Not Help Him to stay and listen, and to tell the people the story of her Grandfather, but she and her family got in their vehicles and left.

"Those choppers and the ones who planned this are disrespectful to our loved ones. Didn't the few people who planned this know that this whole thing is so insensitive and wrong that the Lakota's would come out to defend this ground? We want our children to grow up respectful. We have to teach them," said Autumn Conroy Two Bulls, founder of Helping Every Lakota Person.

Wilma Thin Elk said, "When I was a little girl my Grandma, who was a survivor, used to bring us here and tell what happened. Those helicopters could have shot us, we stand here with no way to defend ourselves, I'm a descendant of Wounded Knee, too. Is that how our ancestors felt? When they saw the military with their guns, and they had no guns? Now they are all lying over there in that grave."

Garfield Little Dog, Council Representative from Wounded Knee District said, "Several elders and survivors of the Wounded Knee Massacre expressed their dislike for the military to come here. It made them feel bad, some are facing serious illness and couldn't be here. I have to stand up for the people in my district when they ask for my help." Little Dog was the only official from the Oglala Sioux Tribe on hand. It was not possible to reach President Theresa Two Bulls as of this writing. The Tribal Security Guards said she went to a pow-wow (social event) in Nebraska. A few people present said they heard President Two Bulls on KILI Radio the previous day, asking people to go to Wounded Knee to hear the presentation, but not much information was provided other than that there would be members of the 7th Calvary and National Guardsmen arriving in military air transport. "It is the 7th Calvary that killed our unarmed relatives, why do they need to hear the story? They enacted the story!" said an unidentified elder to the crowd. "Because, Leksi, (Uncle), these people who did this are all CIA, Colonized Indian A****, they are not Lakota!" responded a young mother, carrying her baby on her hip and holding a little girl by the hand. There was a lot of laughter at that point.

Gerald One Feather, an elder and former Tribal President, offered a prayer, and thanked the people for honoring him by asking him to pray. Folks present talked about the need to enforce respect for ancestors buried in the Mass Grave of the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre.

Note: this occurred on May 1, 2010 at Wounded Knee. It is recorded on videotape.


Whereas, Lakota Chief Big Foot and his band were ill, hungry, and running for their lives when they were captured by the United States 7th Calvary and forced to make camp near Wounded Knee Creek. Chief Big Foot carried a White Flag, an International Symbol of Truce, Ceasefire, and Request for Negotiation during times of War. Chief Big Foot and his band were surrounded, unarmed, and massacred by the US 7th Calvary, which included the use of 4 Hotchkiss guns, on December 29, 1890 at Wounded Knee Creek and in the nearby ravines as they ran, seeking to protect their children. The unarmed Lakota men fought the 7th Calvary with sticks and in hand to hand combat. The unarmed Lakota women fought the 7th Calvary with spoons and in hand to hand combat. They fought to their death and deserve to be honored and respected. The frozen bodies of the massacred Lakota were dumped on top of each other and buried in a mass grave. The US government violated the 1868 Ft Laramie Treaty when they broke the Peace of the Treaty and massacred Chief Big Foot, and more than 300 unarmed men, women, and children.

Whereas, the US Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action against an enemy force which can be bestowed upon an individual serving in the Armed Services of the United States. Twenty Congressional Medals of Honor were awarded to the 7th Calvary for their roles in killing Lakota unarmed prisoners of war at the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre, and the US has refused to reclaim those Medals of Honor, and took 100 years, until 1990, for the US to change the word "Battle" to that of "Massacre" at Wounded Knee, and the US refuses to return items taken from the dead bodies, the camp site, and the massacre site.

Whereas, the United States Government has never apologized to the descendants of Chief Big Foot and his band for this atrocity committed against unarmed Prisoners of War, nor has the US ever taken responsible for their act of massacre as a violation of the 1868 Ft Laramie Treaty nor its continued violations of the 1868 Ft Laramie Treaty, nor were the Oglala Lakota people consulted to determine if bringing in the US Military would be received as conducive to heal the trauma caused by the Wounded Knee Massacre of 1890.

Whereas, all Lakota People have great respect Chief Big Foot and his people and for the tragedy that was enacted upon them in one of the world's most shameful acts ever committed and believe that their Memory must be honored and treated with the utmost respect, including the place where they lie buried in the Wounded Knee Mass Grave.

Whereas, the United States Military arrived at the Wounded Knee Mass Grave on May 1, 2010 in three Military Transport Helicopters that held 40 and more members of the Armed Services of the US without the free, prior, informed consent of the Oglala Lakota people and thus were prevented from landing.

Therefore, Be It Resolved, that the Oglala Sioux Tribe will take every action to see that the United States Reclaims the Twenty Medals of Honor from the 7th Calvary for their role in the Massacre at Wounded Knee, to remove any recognition the US Military bestows to its entities for the Massacre at Wounded Knee, and to obtain the return of personal items taken from Lakota people at the 1890 Massacre.

Therefore Be It Further Resolved, that the Oglala Sioux Tribe, its members, any entity, organization, or resident on the Pine Ridge Reservation will not allow the United States Military from this time forward to come anywhere near the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre Mass Grave in order to demonstrate Honor and Respect for the Lakota people buried there, and to ensure a peaceful, nonviolent, weapon-free zone for the Mass Gravesite area.