Lakotas Defend Land From Tarsand Profitiers

Written by Brenda Norrell

The Pine Ridge Project is a collaborative effort between photographer Aaron Huey and artists Shepard Fairey and Ernesto Yerena, taking the stoy of the Lakota and other tribes fighting for treaty rights, straight to the public in the form of street posters and billboards.

Lakotas arrested blocking tarsands trucks on Lakota land!

Lakotas Alex White Plume, Debra White Plume, Andrew Ironshell, Sam Long Black Cat and Don Iron Shell, were arrested at a highway blockade late Monday, attempting to halt tarsands pipeline trucks. Debra White Plume, just released from jail in Kyle, South Dakota, said, “Alex, myself, Sam Long Black Cat, Andrew Iron Shell and Terrell Eugene Iron Shell were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct.”

“We formed a blockade to stop tarsands oil mine equipment from passing our lands. The truckers told us the corporation office from Calgary, Alberta, Canada and the State of South Dakota made a deal to save the truckers $50,000 per truck. There were two trucks, from having to pay $100,000,” Debra White Plume told Censored News.

“There were about 50 to 75 people on the blockade at the village of Wanbli in Eagle Nest District on the northern side of the Pine Ridge rez.”
Debra White Plume said the trucks were coming from Texas and going to Alberta, Canada to the tarsands oil mine. They each carried a ‘treater vessel’ which is used to separate gas and oil and other elements. Each weighs 229,155 pounds, and is valued at $1,259,593, according to the papers we got from the truck drivers.”

Totran Transportation Sevices Responsible For Treaty Violation

Totran Transportation Services, with offices in Calgary and Houston, was responsible for the trucks.

Photo by Andrew Ironshell


“They said their office in Canada made the route with the State of South Dakota to cross the Pine Ridge rez in order to avoid paying the state of South Dakota $50,000 per truck,” Debra White Plume said.

“The equipment arrived from South Korea in August. The truck drivers said they did not know they were crossing an Indian reservation and would tell their corporate office that they need to look at another route, because if they cross Indian land again they will probably run into another blockade.”

“There were about 75 people on the blockade, people brought pots of soup, frybread, cases of water, doughnuts, soda, and parked their cars to join the blockade. The oldest woman there was Marie Randall, another elder was Ione Bad Cob who came in her WHEELCHAIR and participated in the blockade.”

“The tribal police took us to jail. Our lawyer Sonny Richards did the paperwork to get us out of jail. The tribal police had to let the trucks get off the rez. They escorted them to the reservation line. We oppose the tarsands oil mine in solidarity with Mother Earth and our First Nation allies.”

Action Alert For All Lakota Men

Earlier an action alert said: “Calling all Lakota men on the Pine Ridge Reservation to come to Wanblee SD.”
The alert said “Pipeline trucks are being held there at the border by our Lakota Oyate, OST Police and State Troopers in an effort to keep them from entering our territory. Even the state troopers told the trucks they have to turn around and cannot bring their … pipeline or other materials on to our reservation.”

It also said “Pipeline trucks are refusing to turn around claiming they have corporate rights that supersedes any other law.”

NOW: ‘They are getting through. We need people there now!’

Meanwhile, the following article in the Sidney, Montana, newspaper reveals that Totran has the contract with Alberta Tarsands to transport over-sized loads from Houston to Alberta, as it did today, when the State of South Dakota attempted to help Totran sneak the loads through Lakota land in South Dakota.

This article was first published at Censored News.

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