Monday, May 7, 2007

Role of Settlers in Indigenous Struggles

The Role of Settlers in Indigenous Struggles Zainab Amadahy. Questions arising from the Six Nations land reclamation

By mid-March, 2006, when activist communities discovered the land reclamation at Six Nations of the Grand River, carloads of non-Aboriginal supporters from Toronto, Montreal and beyond made almost daily trips to the site loaded with supplies and youthful activists eager to staff the cookhouse, help out in the first-aid tent, or do a security shift. At night gaggles of underdressed youth would huddle at the fire, soaking up community gossip directly from “the real grassroots” (as one white activist described members of the Grand River community).

In the three months following the April 28, 2006 OPP raid on the Six Nations land reclamation, it wasn’t unusual to find times when there were more white settlers camped out on the reclaimed territory than members of the Grand River community. Some activists were there for the early morning raid and have described the experience of nearly being arrested in everything from public events to on-line downloadable videos. It’s worth noting that all the people charged by the OPP that day or since were Native; no non-Natives are facing charges, even though many were on the site before, during and after the raid.

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