Apache Stronghold

The sacred ancestral lands of Oak Flat in Arizona have rich deposits of copper. Legislation buried in the National Defense Authorization Act in 2015 allows Resolution Copper to begin mining that copper in 2020. In the video below Former Chairman Wendsler Nosie Sr. eloquently describes this situation, this spiritual struggle. Calling on people of faith to support efforts to prevent the theft of the land and mining.

The Poor Peoples Campaign is supporting the efforts of the San Carlos Apache Tribe to retain their sacred land. “Join us in Oak Flat next week on Friday December 13th-14th in solidarity and support of the Apache. We will begin at 6:30 pm on Friday in Oak Flat and end on Saturday at 11:00 am.”

This is a modern day example of the disenfranchisement of indigenous people when their land is found to have something of value that White people want.

The greatest sin of the World has been enacted by Arizona Senator McCain, Senator Flake, and Representatives Kirkpatrick and Gosar of Arizona by including the Southeast Arizona Land Exchange in the National Defense Authorization Act (2015). We are calling on all religious faiths, & military veterans, for this country was founded on freedom of speech, religion and worship, which has been given away to a foreign mining company. 


Elder/Councilman Wendsler Nosie Sr. was born on July 10th 1959, on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, in Gila County, in San Carlos, Arizona and was raised in a traditional Apache way of life.

The San Carlos Apache Tribe, is comprised of nearly 15,000 tribal members on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, in San Carlos, Arizona, ranging within the Gila, Graham and Pinal Counties, totaling 1.8 million acres, situated in the southeastern portion of the State of Arizona.

From the Poor Peoples Campaign

Former Chairman Wendsler Nosie Sr. and the Apache Stronghold are in a significant struggle for their sacred ancestral lands of Oak Flat. Located 1 1/2 hours outside of Phoenix, Arizona, Oak Flat is the site where ancestors are buried, where young girls have their sunrise service, and where the acorns are gathered for core rituals in the Apache religion. In Apache teaching, Oak Flat is the birthplace of all life.

Oak Flat is under threat of destruction by Resolution Copper, a joint venture owned in part by Rio Tinto, one of the largest metal and mining companies in the world. Because of a congressional act under the leadership of Senator John McCain, Rio Tinto is set to begin mining in 2020. Their plans would devastate the area by leaving a 2 mile crater where Oak Flat is now and contaminating the water and air.

Wendsler, with the blessings of the Apache Stronghold, has decided that he will not leave the sacred site until it is protected, and his tribe’s Constitutional and moral rights to religious freedom are respected, even if it means losing his life.

Join us in Oak Flat next week on Friday December 13th-14th in solidarity and support of the Apache. We will begin at 6:30 pm on Friday in Oak Flat and end on Saturday at 11:00 am.

In the Spirit of Love and Justice,
Rev. Dr. William Barber II, Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis, Rev. Dr. John Mendez, and Rev. Dr. Robin Tanner

The following is from the transcript of parts of the video above. The transcript was auto generated so the punctuation and spelling is sometimes not quite right.

First of all I wanna say thank you to everyone that’s out there and able to hear this message you know my name is Winston Rosie and the San Carlos Apache Tribe Called Apache and so today we’re here at Oak Flats, a very special holy place to not only the Apache people but people who have come here and have visit and most importantly to learn and to feel inside that there’s something happening in the world that we have to pay attention.

Coming here today as you can see the water in the canyon now this is where the people before us we knew the Creator as the way we should know the Creator had come daily and did their spiritual rituals so that they can be in balance of life.

Well here is our water this is the giver of life which I know everyone understand the value of life to this this is what gives us tomorrow and if this is all gone then there is no
tomorrow and so the Indian people the native the indigenous in a which is when
we are the creator gave us that responsibility.

But he gave it to us in a way that we have to handle this in a spiritual way because spirituality and if it’s done in that format we’ll achieve the most precious blessing
and that’s our children all those yet to come and that’s what brings me here.
That’s what gives me this life, that’s what gives me the hope for what tomorrow
is gonna be because it’s really important that we come together, we share
that information with our children, we help give direction to our children.
Because those children’s who have bear children that we say today that’s yet to
come. And this is a place of special healing. This is a place of where you
listen to the Creator and all the things that it brings here, brings here for us.
It’s a time to retouch the mother and the mother will speak to you give you
that vision, that mission for you in that direction and most importantly to give
of that give us the strength of all what tomorrow’s gonna be.

Tell me how important the UN declaration is for your tribe.

Well it’s very important only because like I was saying, was trying to say there was that you know we’ve been through the system and the system has failed us. And the United States had a lot of opportunities to really help correct those things but right now we’re fighting mining, mining except in in Arizona plus fighting for the aquifers that involve land swap between the United States and Resolution Copper and so going through the steps from the very bottom up. It’s really annoying because it seems like nobody listens to us when we have trust responsibilities, when we have supposedly consultation and not only that from the first intrusion they have all information but also patches of how sacred and holy these places are, and then the promises that they made all the way up to 1872 and even beyond that, and so you know where do we go with this fight? You know we’ve been to the White House number of times. You know we’ve been to the Hill number of times you know over and over and over but the same thing who’s cutting a deal with who who’s helping who and so there’s got to be a third alternative and that’s where I’m hoping with this decoration that is that the third one is that the one that’s been really going to help Indian tribes because as I mentioned in there you know the United States victimized all the tribes and they probably needs to be a third party to say who was wrong and who was right and how what should be the remedy from them and so I’m hoping that this would be important that if the United States does take a look at it and do sign you know but again is to be political so we’ll see what the out come is gonna be like I was saying in there many tribes have been good I’m gonna have that follow the law they’ve followed everything so you know right now it’s gonna be embarrassing if they don’t let me get to that point in supporting the tribes so we’ll see.

First just give thanks to my creator for allow me to speak here on the first
peoples land you know when we come to the bottom talks is to assure that we
give the blessings to speak here of this man to the first people because we’re
we’re the creator gave me life was in the mountains and so that’s almost the
respect that we give I guess with those of us you know we still see that like
first before we see the American state we see what we see first and so that’s
important and then the second part of that is given thanks to all of you
you’re all God’s children you’re all under the Creator like we don’t and just
the fact that we come together tonight I’m oh I’m really stunned tonight I’m
really emotional I guess you could say it’s what scaring me right now because
years ago we talked about Nene we talked about the greatest sin the greatest
devastation that took place here in America and to add with that we’re like
great victims that the victims have never been cured and causes social

This entry was posted in decolonize, Indigenous, Native Americans, Poor Peoples Campaign, Spiritual Warrior, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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