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Old 07-14-2004, 12:26 PM   #1
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Bush breaks treaty, signs away 24mill.acres of Shoshone land without tribes consent!!

Bush signs Western Shoshone legislation
Tribal leaders views bill as massive land fraud
By Jerry Reynolds Indian Country Today

Updated: 5:06 p.m. ET July 09, 2004WASHINGTON - One of the largest ongoing seizures of Indian land in modern times will move forward following President George W. Bushís signing of the Western Shoshone Distribution Bill on July 7.

Under provisions of the bill, Western Shoshone claims to 24 million acres of land in Nevada, Utah, California and Idaho, based on the Ruby Valley Treaty of 1863, are officially subsumed through payment by the U.S. government.

The bill will forcibly distribute approximately $145 million in funds awarded the tribe by the Indian Land Claims Commission. Most of it will go to 6,000 or so eligible tribal members, with a separate revenue stream set aside for educational purposes.

The commission acted on findings that following the Ruby Valley Treaty, which permitted non-Indian miners access to the tribal lands, a "gradual encroachment" took place that supposedly nullified the treaty.

"Gradual encroachment"
According to the government the "gradual encroachment" theory obviated any need for official cession of land by sovereign Western Shoshone governments, a sticking point to this day with foes of the funds distribution.

The commission based its original $27 million award (enacted by its successor organization, U.S. Court of Federal Claims) on land valuation in effect in 1872 - 15 cents an acre, with no interest on the loss over time.

Because acceptance of the award would create the perception that any claims to their land have been relinquished, the majority of Western Shoshone governments have steadfastly refused the money. Despite the July 7 signing, several Western Shoshone tribes and tribal members said they will continue to rely on the Ruby Valley Treaty to press their land claims.

This has never been easy for them. Another sticking point in the process of seizure has been a court ruling that the tribe could not litigate the award once its trustee, the Interior Department, accepted receipt of it.

Although tribal sovereignty is not vested in individuals but in tribes, Congress has relied on individual votes, cast in rather stage-managed proceedings, to determine that a "majority" of Western Shoshone tribal members favor distribution of funds and the resulting extinction of their land claims. Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., and his Republican ally in the House of Representatives, fellow Nevadan James Gibbons, persuaded their colleagues to pass the embattled bill mainly on the strength of vote tallies in proceedings that had no official sanctioning process across all the Western Shoshone tribes, but concentrated on Nevada tribes.

The Ruby Valley Treaty lands are rich in resources, including gold, water and geothermal energy. Multinational mining companies are standing by to operate within the Ruby Valley lands through "privatization" bills brought forward by Gibbons. Gibbons and Reid are among Congressí leading recipients of mining company contributions.

Nuclear waste repository
In addition, President Bush has designated Yucca Mountain, a site within the Ruby Valley lands, as the nationís nuclear waste repository.

In a statement of dissenting views attached to the distribution bill, signed by six members of the House, the claim continues to be made that no proof has been provided of Bush administration claims that a "vast majority" of Western Shoshone favor distribution of funds.

In any case, sovereignty is vested in tribal government, not individuals. According to the billís more vocal Western Shoshone opponents, the one former Western Shoshone tribal governmental leader who had testified in behalf of distribution did so over the opposition of a majority of his council, which passed a resolution refuting his testimony. A "Western Shoshone Claims Steering Committee," heavily relied on by Reid and Gibbons in producing a show of tribal support for distribution, has all the appearance of a shadow government, having been declared null and void by a resolution of the recognized government - all this again now part of recent historical record.

Western Shoshone governing bodies have passed at least eight resolutions against distribution: the Te-Moak Tribe of Western Shoshone in 2004, Battle Mountain Indian Colony in 2002, South Fork Band Indian Reservation in 2003, Wells Band Council Te-Moak Tribe of Western Shoshone in 2002, Yomba Shoshone Tribe in 2003, Winnemucca Indian Colony in 2003, and Elko Band Council, which passed two in 2004.

The distribution will take place in defiance of at least these eight resolutions among the Western Shoshone. The National Congress of American Indians, the Organization of American States, and the United Nations have also weighed in against the distribution.

Western Shoshone resistance will clearly continue. "Itís not over," said Mary Gibson, a tribal member. "We still exist and we still have our rights to our land. It makes me sad and angry that myths continue to cloud the truth in this country. This struggle isnít a Shoshone versus Shoshone battle, the underlying issue here is the U.S. responsibility and accountability for a treaty with the Western Shoshone Nation. As long as the people in the U.S. allow this to happen it will continue to happen."

The fight is not over
Raymond Yowell, of the Western Shoshone National Council, described himself as "utterly disappointed." Itís unbelievable that the U.S. body that makes the laws has acted in this manner. The fight is not over. A fraud is a fraud - individuals cannot sell out a nation and the bill, although a threat politically, does nothing to change our inherent rights or our treaty rights. Congress and the President were informed of all the facts that touch upon this issue. We will use the Treaty of Ruby Valley to stop Yucca Mountain and to protect our lands. Our title is still intact.

"The self-described, private group who pushed for this money are not members of any federally recognized council and have no authority to speak on behalf of our tribe or the Western Shoshone Nation. The Nevada legislators and the Bush administration have been well-advised of this fact. The way this legislation was handled makes an absolute sham of the stated government-to-government relationship and responsibility of the U.S. government."

Hugh Stevens, chairman of the Te-Moak Tribe of the Western Shoshone Nation, added, "Senator Reid has made numerous public commitments regarding resolving land issues for our communities. We will be looking for him to stand by that commitment in an expeditious fashion."

However, a press officer in Reidís office, Tessa Hafen, said the senator struck no "deal" in the distribution bill that would permit tribes to retain or regain parcels of land for themselves within the Ruby Valley Treaty regions. Proposals to that effect have come from Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., in the House. Hafen said the senator has always hoped to work realistically with Western Shoshone tribes on their land claims. "Itís always been part of his long-term strategy," she added, then noted that "strategy" is perhaps too strong a word for it.

He has always hoped to work with Western Shoshone tribes on land issues, she concluded. "The problem is no one has ever come to him."

Last edited by DrumChild; 07-14-2004 at 12:28 PM..
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Old 07-14-2004, 12:38 PM   #2
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Bush can stick is nuclear SUPPOSITORY where the sun don't shine!!

This is just wrong.

They've got the whole of the US to mess with......why not put their damned nuclear SUPPOSITORY in New York!! or on Three Mile Island..hell, it's all messed up over there anyway!!

What else is next!!

...boy, this whips my cream to think that some insane, mofo like Bush can do crap like this.....what's even MORE unsettling, is the fact that Congress and basically the WHOLE of the Federal Government sides with Bush on this.

Shoot.....they send BILLIONS of dollars into space all the time, why not just dump all that nuclear crap there, or hurl it on a collision course with the sun or something.

.....GAH!!!!

Now I'm all worked up.....aye!
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Old 07-15-2004, 12:50 AM   #3
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Man I knew Bush sucked. This takes the cake. What next reinstitute slavery. Course he is the number one supporter of institutionalized corporate slavery. Oh, man don't get me started. Anyone but Bush is sounding better & better. ARGGGG. I strongly dislike the man. Man, heck he dosen't even deserve the title.


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Old 07-15-2004, 03:40 AM   #4
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this is why i believe it's important to vote!
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Old 07-17-2004, 07:06 PM   #5
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Angry

no, this is why it is important for the people to know their rights, and to stand up and fight for them!!! The government has no power over the people, it derives its power from the people. Dont get me wrong, I dont like Bush at all, but you are decieved if you think Kerry is any different. Government is not the SOLUTION, its the PROBLEM! They dont teach the truth in public schools, they teach propaganda...and all that 'NEWS' you see on TV and read about is all part of their way of controlling what you think. Anyways, if people really care about this they will mobilize! Start petitions! March on Washington! Protest! Write letters! WE have to show them that we will not go quietly into the night! And just so you know, this isint a problem restricted to Native Americans...the government uses a bunk arguement of Emminent Domain whenever it wants to steal someone's property...It happens to private home owners all the time. DAMN THE MAN! Viva la revolucion! :)

Sorry...I get a little perturbed about these things!

Politicians: From the latin poly, meaning many, and Tick, meaning bloodsucking parasites!! :p

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Old 07-17-2004, 07:35 PM   #6
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There is enough on both Bush and Cheney to impeach both
of them and permanently bar them from holding any office in
the federal government. Conflict of interest (Cheney),
purgery (to start a war, not over whether or not Dubya has
a mistress), etc. If I did half of the $hit these two were
involved in, I would be sent away for life....
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Old 07-19-2004, 07:59 PM   #7
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Right on BB. The times are changing from bad to worse each year that goes by... More treaties are being broken and more of our people and rights are being put out to pasture. The times of power haven't changed at all. The people of this country have always looked at numbers..because that is where the power is. We want treaties to be upheld and our rights right along with it, yet many of us don't vote to have our voice heard. We want people and orginizations to leave our lands alone what little we have left or were given yet we can't even mobilize enough to have our voices heard. Today most would say that the power is in the court systems and that is where one can find rightful judgement..but as we all know there is no way to find right and just judgement against a nation with using their own laws it just won't happen.
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Old 07-19-2004, 09:56 PM   #8
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George Armstrong Custer is alive and lives in the White House.
Lets wipe him out at the ballot box this November. It is hard
to think of a worse President; if Congress will not impeach
him, he has to be voted out. I hope he doesn't cheat again
and steal another election. I don't think this country can
survive another four years of this man.
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Old 07-20-2004, 01:03 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MelissaRose
no, this is why it is important for the people to know their rights, and to stand up and fight for them!!! The government has no power over the people, it derives its power from the people. Dont get me wrong, I dont like Bush at all, but you are decieved if you think Kerry is any different. Government is not the SOLUTION, its the PROBLEM! They dont teach the truth in public schools, they teach propaganda...and all that 'NEWS' you see on TV and read about is all part of their way of controlling what you think. Anyways, if people really care about this they will mobilize! Start petitions! March on Washington! Protest! Write letters! WE have to show them that we will not go quietly into the night! And just so you know, this isint a problem restricted to Native Americans...the government uses a bunk arguement of Emminent Domain whenever it wants to steal someone's property...It happens to private home owners all the time. DAMN THE MAN! Viva la revolucion! :)

Sorry...I get a little perturbed about these things!

Politicians: From the latin poly, meaning many, and Tick, meaning bloodsucking parasites!! :p

Never trust your money to a banker, your soul to a preacher, or your rights to a lawyer or a politician!
Now go back and re-read your post and tell me it's not important to start voting. Everything you just said has everythign to do with voting including knowing your rights! Just because you have them now, an act of congress can take them away tomorrow forever! And how is that preventable? By knowing the candidates and making an educated decision of who to vote for.
I never said kerry was going to be any better, but he's not the only candidate out there, but not only that, he's got a good strong running mate who might just keep his butt in line!
Now I'm not saying anyone is a bad person for not voting. We all know the indigenous nations have different ideas about voting and it's even untraditional for me to be a registered voter. But I'm living right now in a state that keeps trying to take away what the alaska natives have and I got the power to vote that it does'nt happen and i'm gonna use it. I respect the decision not to vote, but still advocate for those that want to see things change to go and register. (that is not to say that those who don't vote don't want to see things change so please don't take it that way).
And yes we can make a difference... there's even an article posted here about how our votes could sway the elections one way or the other in some states!
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