I am so impressed and grateful for the nonviolent movement that is taking place in Canada today. It gives me hope that example will trigger a similar movement here in the US. We are already seeing that beginning to happen in Seattle, New York City and Des Moines.
The fundamental question now is whether we have the wisdom and courage to learn from the nonviolent revolution taking place in Canada? To connect with the Wet’suwet’en and bring their example to United States as well?
This as an opportunity to upend the status quo and build just communities for us all. The status quo is pushing us further and faster into environmental collapse.
The Wet’suwet’en people and their supporters are showing us the way.
Seize the day!
“The eyes of the future are looking back at us and they are praying for us to see beyond our own time. They are kneeling with hands clasped that we might act with restraint, that we might leave room for the life that is destined to come. To protect what is wild is to protect what is gentle.”Terry Tempest Williams
Indigenous people in Canada are giving the world a demonstration of the power of nonviolent action. The justness of their cause — defending the land from those who would destroy it for short term profit and the elimination of a habitable climate on earth — combined with their courage and the absence on their part of cruelty or hatred, has the potential to create a much larger movement, which is of course the key to success.
SHUT DOWN CANADA UNTIL IT SOLVES ITS WAR, OIL, AND GENOCIDE PROBLEM, by David Swanson, Executive Director, World Beyond War, WorldBeyondWar.org, Feb 15, 2020
In so-called Canada, urban Indigenous organizers are re-energizing a decades-old struggle by redefining Indigenous sovereignty in the city streets.
We are inheriting the consciousness-raising staged through Idle No More, an Indigenous movement that spread from Canada to the US in 2013, and are pushing this movement further, making on-the-ground connections between culture, land, and sovereignty.
We are creating a new politics that honors the particularities of individual nations’ land relationships, cultures, and knowledges while also embracing urban Natives as people with political agency as well.
We are synthesizing the varied and diverse Indigenous sovereignty efforts into a movement that has the numbers, strategic alliances, and political vision needed to fight Canadian colonialism.
We are acting in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en frontline, and we are also saying: the colonial frontlines are everywhere.
Colonial frontlines in the city: urban Indigenous organizing by Natalie Knight, ROAR, February 1, 2019
In the early hours of February 6, militarized Canadian police began a five-day long assault on the unceded and sovereign territory of the Wet’suwet’en people in northern British Columbia to facilitate the construction of a fracked gas pipeline that lacks that nation’s consent.
Nine days later, Wet’suwet’en land defender Dinize Ste ohn tsiy tweeted that a heavy RCMP presence on Wet’suwet’en territory continues.
In response to this violation of the rule of law (notably the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples), Indigenous peoples and allies took to the rails to demand that the RCMP and TC Energy Coastal GasLink, the company behind the controversial pipeline, remove themselves from Wet’suwet’en territory.
The Gitxsan blockade effectively shut down all activity at the Port of Prince Rupert, with more than 150 freight trains unable to move in or out of that port. Furthermore, 18 container ships in Prince Rupert and 48 ships in Vancouver could neither pick up or unload their shipments.
The Mohawk blockade resulted in the cancellation of all passenger travel between Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal and CN shutting down its operations in eastern Canada.
Furthermore, Vancouver Island-based Mohawk scholar Gerald Taiaiake Alfred suggested this could even be a revolutionary moment.
He said: “I can remember saying 15, 20 years ago, that if we ever had a development in our movement where the power of Indigenous nationhood and Indigenous rights could be melded and brought together with the power of young Canadians who are committed to the environment and social justice, it would be revolutionary.”
Rail blockades are proving to be an effective non-violent response to state violence by Brent Patterson, rabble.ca, Feb 15, 2020
Capital is a global phenomenon, and it moves over and through borders as such. The idea that we can’t show solidarity because we’re not in Canada is false. With the announcement that Canadian cargo has been re-routed to U.S. ports due to ongoing disruptions, we now know that this struggle can be opened up across the U.S.-Canada border, and beyond.
In solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en nation, all of the rail and port blockades across so-called Canada, and everyone taking to the streets. This is an important moment in anti-colonial struggle, and it will pass us by if we fail to grasp it.
BNSF Rails in Seattle Blockaded in Solidarity with Wet’suwet’en, Rising Tide North America, Feb 18, 2020, cross-posted from Puget Sound Anarchists
“Hands off Wet’suwet’en! Hands off Wet’suwet’en!”
As the western sun sank into the Pacific, hundreds of voices echoed around the transit station at Commercial Drive and Broadway in Vancouver.
Hundreds of people again blocked a key intersection in this West Coast city, snarling rush-hour traffic and closing out the 13th straight day of nationwide solidarity actions in support of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs and their fight against the Coastal GasLink pipeline through their traditional territory.
“Justin Trudeau can put an end to this by ending the occupation of Wet’suwet’en territory,” organizer Alison Bodine shouted to the assembled crowd.
That rallying cry has turned a small police detachment on the Morice West Service Road outside Houston, B.C., into a critical bargaining chip as federal and provincial leaders try to broker a meeting with the hereditary chiefs and negotiate an end to the crisis.
One of the five Wet’suwet’en hereditary clan chiefs says he will not meet with the federal government until that detachment — indeed, all RCMP officers — are withdrawn from his clan’s territory.
Tensions mount as pipeline protests continue across the country by Jesse Winter, Canada’s National Observer, February 20th 2020
February has seen an explosion of Indigenous and non-Indigenous support for the current political struggle by the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs and their supporters. Again, we are seeing a ham-handed response of both orders of government, delivered in justificatory talking points to the media and enforced by the RCMP. Once again we have the police dragging Indigenous peoples off of their lands, in Canada, in the service of the settler state, which is as usual attending to virtually every relevant political interest – except Indigenous ones.
This is happening despite the rhetoric from federal and some provincial politicians about the need to transform their relationship with Indigenous people – even though that little matter of land theft continues. And Canada – in all its structural manifestations – continues its perpetual drive to eliminate Indigenous rights to land and self-determination, treating them as impediments to the national interest.
OPINION What is happening on Wet’suwet’en territory shows us that reconciliation is dead by GINA STARBLANKET AND JOYCE GREEN, TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL, FEBRUARY 13, 2020
Cricket Guest, an Anishinaabekwe Métis who demonstrated with Indigenous youth and climate change activists in Toronto on Tuesday, said disruption of traffic and business goods is “absolutely necessary” to bring attention to the injustices inflicted by the government and police on Wet’suwet’en in B.C.
“We’ve been resisting for 500 years and we’ll be resisting for 500 more if that’s what it takes to earn the respect and have a real nation-to-nation relationship,” Guest said.
“Reconciliation is dead and we will shut down Canada until Canada pays attention and listens to and meets our demands.”
‘Reconciliation is dead and we will shut down Canada,’ Wet’suwet’en supporters say. By Alex Ballingall Ottawa Bureau, The Star, Feb. 11, 2020