BREAKING: Earth First! activists lock down inside Devon Tower in protest of Tar Sands extraction and plans to frack the Eagle Ford Shale.

bannerTwo folks have been booked in with “Terrorism Hoax” State Felonies, which can carry a ten year sentence. The “terrorism hoax?” Glitter that fell from the banner. They’ve also been booked in additional misdemeanors. The two folks who locked down are being charged with two counts of trespass. We’re working on getting the $3,500 together to get them out. Please donate at http://gptarsandsresistance.org/donate/

BREAKING: Earth First! activists lock down inside Devon Tower in protest of Tar Sands extraction and plans to frack the Eagle Ford Shale.

Contact: Eric Whelan, gptsrmedia@gmail.com, (405) 924-7356

Oklahoma City, OK: Early Friday morning, two activists with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance (GPTSR) and Cross Timbers Earth First! locked themselves inside a revolving door at the Devon Tower in protest of Devon’s involvement in toxic tar sands extraction and fracking, as well as plans to increase fracking in the Eagle Ford Shale. Simultaneously, a banner displaying a Mockingjay from the popular Hunger Games series was unfurled from the second story, reading: “The Odds are Never in Our Favor.” Imagery from the Hunger Games was employed to highlight the parallel between industrial sacrifice zones in real life, and the resource colonies (Districts) that are subjected to state and economic violence in the series. This action coincides with two days of trial for folks in the Mi’kmaq Warrior Society who were arrested while preventing natural gas exploration on their traditional lands.

In 2010, Devon Energy’s Jackfish 1 facility on Beaver Lake Cree First Nations territory in Alberata, Canada experienced a failure at one of the wellheads. The failure sent a plume of bitumen-laced, high-temperature steam into the air for nearly 36 hours. Long seen as a responsible and benevolent corporate community member, Devon Energy is a key player in the deadly tar sands industry. And though Devon Energy has been touted as practicing the safest and greenest form of tar sands extraction, the form of extraction that Devon practices, steam assisted gravity drainage, emits 2.5x the greenhouse emissions as open mining according to the Pembina Institute. Additionally, since 80% of tar sands reserves lie too deep within the earth to mine, this type of extraction will utilize 30x more land area than open mining.

“I’m opposed to the industry’s blatant disregard for human wellbeing in the pursuit of profit,” said Cory Mathis of Austin, TX—one of the activists locked down inside Devon. “These industries poison countless communities, often deceive and coerce folks into signing contracts, and when that doesn’t work, they use eminent domain to steal the land. Texas and Oklahoma have long been considered sacrifice zones for the oil and gas industry, and people have for the most part learned to roll over and accept the sicknesses and health issues that come with the temporary and unsustainable boost in employment.”

 

 

Folks locked down, facing two counts of trespass.

Folks locked down, facing two counts of trespass.

“I’m here to try to bring to light the damage being done by tar sands extraction and fracking. These companies have been deliberately hiding and suppressing information from the general public, all-the-while building their public image of being charitable and creating jobs. It’s the same story all the way from the Athabasca tar sands to the Gulf—we hear the ridiculous proposition that a company that routinely profits off of poisoning folks is somehow capable of being ‘philanthropic’,” said Caroline McNally, the other activist locked down.

CEO Jim Richels also sits on the board of TransCanada, the company who built the Gulf Coast Segment of the toxic Keystone XL, and whose Northern Segment is awaiting presidential approval.

Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance, a direct action collective, opposes all forms of Tar Sands exploitation, whether it be Trans Canada’s Keystone XL pipeline, Enbridge’s Flanagan South and Seaway Piplelines, or Devon’s extraction of diluted bitumen on the sovereign Beaver Lake Cree Nation’s territory. Cross Timbers Earth First! is a radical environmental justice group committed  to putting an end to any form of industrial extraction in the Cross Timbers bioregion, with a particular distaste for the widespread fracking that is poisoning communities and watersheds.

One of two activists facing Federal "Terrorism Hoax," two counts of trespass, and one count of disorderly conduct.

One of two activists facing  “Terrorism Hoax,” State Felonies. Also facing a disorderly conduct charge.

UPDATE 2:00pm: Folks arrested for allegedly dropping the banners banner drop are facing charges of federal “terrorism hoax,” two counts of trespass, and one count of disorderly conduct–the “terrorism hoax” referring to glitter that fell from the banner. The two folks who locked down are facing two counts of trespass each.
Update 11:45: Six folks have been released from police custody. Four still in custody, with folks who locked down somewhere upstairs in the Devon Tower.
UPDATE 11:07: Both folks who locked down have been extracted, placed into wheelchairs, and wheeled into elevators to go “upstairs” in the Devon Tower. We have no clue why.
UPDATE 10:50: One person has been extracted from the lockdown, under arrest.

UPDATE 10:40: 8 Folks on site have been arrested and put in cop cars, whole street blocked off with cop cars, firetrucks, and a HazMat vehicle

Drawing the Line: Speech from GPTSR

fayetteville

[[Below is the transcript of part of a speech given by a member of the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance collective at a "Draw The Line" event in Fayetteville, "Arkansas".  The intent of the speech was to comment on and criticize climate exceptionalism and how the mainstream Anti-KXL movement's exclusive emphasis on how the [northern segment] of the KXL being “game over for the planet” is not only deluded but damaging to attempts to develop real networks of resistance and solidarity. For an excellent critique of how large environmental organizations perpetuate white supremacy/environmental racism in their organizing, check out our friends article, “Are Mainstream Environmental Groups Keeping Racism Alive?”]]

Transcript:

The communities that stand to suffer the brunt of increased tar sands extraction, transportation, and refining have been largely invisible in the mainstream opposition to the KXL north. At the point of extraction, First Nations folks, including the Beaver Lake Cree Nation and Athabasca Chipewyan Nation, are under assault by the toxic extraction that takes place on and near their traditional land. Companies such as Exxon, Shell, BP, Devon Energy, Suncorp, act in collusion with the colonial government of Canada to continue assaults on their bodies, traditional way of life, and the landbase they’ve historically lived on and with.

It is incredibly important to recognize that the logic of settler-white supremacy designates nonwhite and indigenous bodies as valueless, as necessary casualties for extractive and industrial progress, is the same logic that governs the mainstream environmental movement’s omission or tokenization of their participation and experience.

In the majority latina and latino community of Manchester, the Valero refinery that stands to receive tar sands from the Gulf Coast segment of the KXL continues to poison residents with benzene, sulfur dioxide, 1,3 butadiene, and polycyclic aromatic compounds. Residents there are 50% more likely to develop leukemia than individuals just 10 miles to the south. Friends of mine that have gone down there to film and resist Valero alongside residents had nosebleeds, nausea, increased fatigue, and a noticeable shift in mental functioning and emotion. When these refineries begin to increase their refining of tar sands, the emissions from this dirty fuel will further put fenceline communities health in jeopardy.

Sadly, experiences like those of folks near the tar sands and petrochemical facilities are far from the anomalous when it comes to extraction and other industrial processes. It is easy to offer folks sympathies and prayers when they are under assault by the dominant system, to click “like” and “share,” but we become better allies in their struggle when we commit to taking the necessary steps to ensure that the tar sands project cannot expand, cannot get its product to the refinery, to points of export.

Currently, there are numerous pipelines proposed and in construction that stand to dramatically increase tar sands exploitation, transportation, and refining. Out of six pipelines slated to carry tar sands to a point of export, the Gulf Coast segment of the Keystone XL accounts for 17% of total volume. This is a call to join us in resisting other pipelines, to band together and support groups on the front lines resisting tar sands expansion. We’re incredibly inspired by ya’ll pledging to resist the Keystone XL North, and hope to support you in your resistance. We only hope that as we move forward we are able to include folks who have been fighting against toxic extraction, environmental racism, and living in sacrifice zones, as well as move forward together to build a movement capable of stopping the industry in its tracks. I’d like to end by paraphrasing a quote that is very close to me: Protest is when I say I disagree with something, Resistance is when I ensure that what I disagree with doesn’t happen. Thank you for fighting.

Also, check out some awesome sites you might not see on a 350 email-blast:

Breaking: GPTSR brings tar sand spills home for Devon Energy!

devontower2

Early this morning, activists with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance (GPTSR) and folks from Idle No More Central Oklahoma staged a mock “oil spill” outside of the Devon Energy Center in downtown Oklahoma City to highlight Devon’s dangerous involvement in the Tar Sands Gigaproject. In addition to the mock oil spill, passionate activists held signs that symbolized the many devastating oil spills caused by the industry’s carelessness and neglect while chanting, “No Devon! No Tar Sands! No destruction of Native lands.”  Among the spills listed was Devon’s own Jackfish leak, when a malfunctioning producer well spewed  a plume of bitumen-laced, high-temperature steam into the air for nearly 36 hours on Beaver Lake Cree Nation Territory.  Activists also handed out flyers to passerby that contained a link to a newly launched page specifically for Devon, www.gptarsandsresistance.org/devon  the text of which is included below.

P1300365

devonlibrarydevontower1

#####

devonblackflaglogo3Devon Energy (NYSE: DVN) is one of the largest oil and gas companies on the continent, and they’re working tirelessly to poison numerous communities and fuck up countless ecologies. Disregarding proper tribal consultation and the ecological consequences of tar sands extraction, Devon plans to double their extraction of tar sands on Beaver Lake Cree Nation territory within the next decade–continuing to carve up their traditional hunting lands with evermore roads, seismic line easements, and pipelines, as each new well compounds the risk of a catastrophe like the Cold Lake spill.

Diagram of In-Situ extraction, with pretty unsoiled forest above directional drill

Diagram of In-Situ extraction, with pretty unsoiled forest above directional drill

Devon’s in-situ sites at the Jackfish and Pike projects accounted for 8% of their Q2 hydrocarbon production, while the total reserves in their leased areas for these projects amount to nearly one fifth of the accessible reserves on all of their leased lands. This highlights the impetus for their involvement in one of the riskiest and intrinsically devastating hydrocarbon plays on the continent.

Every mode of hydrocarbon extraction has its own limitations and risks. The industry shitheads that tell you different are lying to your face.  The damage done to surrounding communities, from extraction and transportation to the point of refining, is at most a calculation of public-image blowback–including fines and lawsuits–against their insatiable desire for profit and investor confidence.  The fact that 80% of recoverable hydrocarbons in the Athabasca Tar Sands can only be reached by in-situ extraction methods also serve to illustrate that it’s not out of benevolence or concern for safety that this is their chosen method, but rather a strategic decision to have a stake in long-term tar sands extraction after the bitumen recoverable by surface mining has long disappeared.

"More than 8,650 barrels of bitumen have been removed from the four sites which likely began leaking last winter. The four leaks were reported to the AER between May and June." For more info, check: http://bit.ly/19jxXyP
“More than 8,650 barrels of bitumen have been removed from the four sites which likely began leaking last winter. The four leaks were reported to the AER between May and June.” For more info, check: http://bit.ly/19jxXyP

Beaver Lake Cree Nation
On the Front Lines of Tar Sands Extraction

Among other First Nations, The Beaver Lake Cree Nation stands at the frontline of Devon’s tar sands projects: the lands they rely on for sustenance–they hunt and fish on lands they’ve lived on before settlers stepped foot on this continent –have been cut into by 13,483 miles of seismic lines, over half a thousand miles of road infrastructure, and over 2.5k miles of pipelines. [http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2013/05/08/federal-and-provincial-governments-lose-appeal-against-first-nation-oil-sands-lawsuit]

What the industry paints as a benevolent project promising economic growth is, in reality, slow industrial genocide. Two main herds of caribou that the Beaver Lake Cree rely on for hunting have declined in population over 70% in the past fifteen years.  [http://www.ienearth.org/what-we-do/tar-sands/] Rates of cancers related to hydrocarbon extraction have increased exponentially in communities that surround the extraction sites, as both routine and unexpected toxic releases occur.

Industry and colonial government go hand in hand–in order for this bullshit to occur, they must disregard the health and safety of countless communities and deliberately violate treaties the Canadian government has made with First Nations. The Beaver Lake Cree Nation filed a lawsuit in 2008 asserting that in approving and backing the expansion of tar sands infrastructure projects, the colonial governments of Alberta and Canada have accrued over 17,000 treaty violations. Despite the colonial governments’ attempts to have this case dismissed, the Court of Appeal of Alberta rejected this motion and is rightfully allowing the case to proceed–calling the future of tar sands extraction in Treaty 6 territories into question.

Of course, we hope there’s no future for tar sands extraction.
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

 

And is it any surprise that John Richels, Executive Director and President of Devon Energy, should also sit on TransCanada’s Board of Directors?

John Richels: President and Executive Director of Devon Energy, and Independent Director on TransCanada's Board of Directors.
John Richels: President and Executive Director of Devon Energy, and Independent Director on TransCanada’s Board of Directors.

 

 

 

 

Legal Update on the Seminole County 10!

On September 3rd, the 10 folks who were arrested at the June 24th action went before the judge in Seminole County for their charges. In case you don’t remember, 8 folks locked down to construction equipment, to each other on top of office trailers and on the ground, successfully shutting down work at a KXL pump station construction site. In addition to these folks who locked down, police arrested an additional activist for stepping back onto the site to do direct support after the fuzz forbade it, as well as the police liaison after they requested his presence on the TransCanada’s easement. Originally charged with trespassing and obstruction charges—the obstructing charges carrying up to a year jail sentence—their lawyer was able to secure a plea deal for anyone who wanted it wherein the obstruction charge will be dropped, and folks can plead guilty to the trespassing, and agree to pay a fine, court costs, and $100 restitution to the Seminole County fire department for the extraction process.

The police liaison’s charges were dropped entirely, and 8 other individuals agreed to the plea deal. One individual chose to fight it out in court. Folks who took the plea owe Seminole County over $700, and need your help ASAP! You can donate here:Donate

We appreciate all your help, and look forward to stepping up the fight against the Flanagan South Pipeline, one of the many pipelines that rivals the Keystone XL. Sign up to TAKE ACTION against Enbridge and their dangerous expansion to tar sands infrastructure on this continent: www.gptarsandsresistance.org/flanagan-sout

arrestees and youthful supporter outside the courthouse

arrestees and youthful supporter outside the courthouse

 

Here are some testimonies from after the court case:

From James Peterson:

On June 24th 2013, I participated in a direct action against the Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline in Seminole County Oklahoma in an effort to halt construction for as long as possible and to try and spread awareness of this struggle. I thought that if I put my myself in harms way, folks I know might take more interest due to the personal connection. It seems to have worked in that respect. Much love and respect to the GPTSR Organizers. Court having just wrapped up, I am looking back on an experience that I am very proud of. Let’s do it again, sometime!.

From Martin Mackeral:

On June 24th, 2013, I and several other people engaged in a non-violent direct action in which we temporarily halted construction of a Keystone XL pumping station in Seminole County, OK. If completed, the Keystone XL pipeline would allow increased exploitation of tar sands, a particularly dirty fossil fuel.

Yesterday, September 3rd, I chose to take a plea deal and pleaded guilty to “trespassing after being forbidden” related to that action. I do not regret my actions, and I hope that in the months and years to come more and more people choose to engage in such direct actions and protests of all kinds in order to prevent construction of more fossil fuel infrastructure. We must act now to prevent further pollution of land, air, and water and limit the risk of climate catastrophe. Such actions are not without their costs, but inaction is the most costly path of all.

Support the Seminole County TEN!!!

1045086_144917745712335_991747794_nOn June 24th, 2013, 8 people walked on to an active Transcanada pump station construction site and shut it down. In a show of force and fearlessness, these folks locked themselves to machines and offices, in by far GPTSR’s largest action. Throughout the action the police and firefighters took extreme actions try to physically and psychologically get them to unlock, even going as far as to use the jaws of life on one of the lock boxes, cutting one of the activist’s hand!

A total of ten arrests, dozens of pissed off Transcanda employees, cops and volunteer firefighters. One very very shut down work site. Direct action gets the goods!

The arrestees are facing Criminal trespass and Obstructing a Police officer charges, their bonds were 1,500$ each. They are now facing nearly 1000$ dollar fees for court and fines on top of a potential threat of up to a year in jail if they do not take plea deals.

You helped us get them out of jail, now we’re asking for help to keep them out. These people took great risks to themselves to stop the construction work in July, but their battle is not over yet!
They are fighting for clean air, clean water and an end to Tar Sands exploitation!

No prisoners for civil disobedience!
Donate what you can, anything helps!
If you can’t fight, show those who can that you stand with them!

You can donate at here
Donate

Link to the Wepay page here

Protect the Sacred II: Man Camps

 

protectthesacred1

Bad-Ass ladies at the Protect the Sacred II Conference

TRIGGER WARNING!

                  During the multi-year media melee around the Keystone XL, many issues have been raised by those fighting the pipeline. Potential effects on the climate have galvanized a movement around Bill McKibben’s 350, and the potential for spills has put rural communities throughout the heart of “North America” into a limelight they do not often enjoy. Often, the sensationalism surrounding the pipeline on both sides glosses over the real effects felt by those most affected by these industries. Ecosystems like the Boreal Forest in Northern “Alberta”, which is the largest temperate rainforest on Turtle Island, are being decimated to clear the way for Tar Sands m and pipelines. Places like the Athabasca River Delta and the Sand Hills in “Nebraska” are important habitat for many migrating bird populations. The KXL stands to cut a swath through the Northern Plains that has never seen an oil pipeline of any kind, threatening some of the last pieces of native prairie as well as slicing through sites of cultural importance to many of the plains tribes.

Also largely missed in the mainstream discourse around the Tar sands are communities such as the Beaver Lake Cree and Athabasca Chepewyan near the Tar Sands extraction complex in “Alberta”, and the Lakota, Dakota, Ponca, Osage, Omaha, Caddo, and many other native communities standing squarely in the way of the pipeline through the plains of the “United States”. Tar Sands extraction and transportation, taken in the larger context of North American industrial extraction, serve to further the colonization and attempted subjugation and assimilation of the indigenous people of Turtle Island. This continued colonization is still accompanied by violence and terror, including sexual violence and abuse. This sexual violence is directly correlated to the boom and bust cycle of industrial extraction and the communities it occurs in, and culturally correlated to the way of thinking that allows our culture to perpetuate violence against the earth.

 Extreme energy extraction and pipeline construction not only bring devastation of the earth but increased violence against women. In order to build and extract on a large scale there is a need for large amounts of man power. Thousands of people are needed in order to extract oil from the Bakken oil fields in “North Dakota” and to build pipelines such as the Keystone XL. Men come from all over the country to sites of construction and extraction for these projects and stay for months to years. In order to house these numbers, “man camps” are constructed, resembling army barracks or large mobile home complexes. In one man camp outside so-called Tioga, “North Dakota” in the Bakken oil fields, almost all of the 1,238 people are men.

The recent Protect the Sacred II conference at the Ft. Randall Casino on the Yankton reservation in “South Dakota” highlighted that connection, with two days of presentations and talks bridging the divide between veteran’s groups, those fighting for environmental justice and groups that run shelters and advocacy centers. The immediate issue at hand was the siting of three “man camps” for TransCanada’s Keystone XL in “South Dakota” and at least one in “Nebraska”. As pointed out by women from the Ft. Berthold reservation in “North Dakota”, these camps bring a rash of drugs, sexual violence and sex trafficking to the communities they are sited near. In fact, communities that are experiencing a boom of industrial extraction, like communities in the Bakken as well as those around the Tar Sands extraction complex, experience vastly disproportionate levels of drug use, sexual violence, and general violence, due to the large influx of workers. The siting of these extraction industries near marginalized indigenous communities and communities of color is not a coincidence. It is far easier for corporations and the corporate state to repress local populations and force their way into an area when those populations do not hold power in society, and have no one in government who will fight for them. This has been repeated over and over again in “North America”, from the Coal Mines of Appalachia, to the Uranium and coal mines on traditional Dineh territory in the Southwest, and includes urban communities of color struggling with the many refining complexes throughout “North America”; such as Chevron’s Richmond Oil Refinery, located in a community that is primarily African-American, Latino, and Laotian, and “Canada’s” Chemical Valley, located around Sarnia “Ontario” and right next to the Aamjiwnaang First Nation Reserve.

 

More Bad-asses

More Bad-asses

 

The Fort Berthold Reservation located in western “North Dakota” is home to the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nations. The Fort Berthold Reservation is in the middle of the Bakken oil boom, and because of the large influx of men, violence against native women on the reservation has increased exponentially. “In 2012, the tribal police department reported more murders, fatal accidents, sexual assaults, domestic disputes, drug busts, gun threats, and human trafficking cases than in any year before. The surrounding counties offer similar reports. But there is one essential difference between Fort Berthold and the rest of North Dakota: The reservation’s population has more than doubled with an influx of non-Indian oil workers—over whom the tribe has little legal control.” (http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/02/on-indian-land-criminals-can-get-away-with-almost-anything/273391/) Tribal police cannot prosecute non-natives for crimes that are committed on reservations. The 1978 Supreme Court case Oliphant v. Suquamish stripped tribes the right to prosecute non-natives who commit crimes on reservations. Tribal police are helpless to hold these men accountable because they have no legal authority. The oil companies that employ these scum bags protect them from any legal ramifications and are complicit in the exploitation and violence against native women.

Sadie Young Bird of the Fort Berthold Coalition Against Domestic Violence spoke at the conference about the increased violence against women she has seen at Fort Berthold and the increase of drug use. The men that come to work in the oil fields bring money and drugs onto the reservation and exploit vulnerable women. But it’s not just vulnerable women who are at risk. There are also cases of women being abducted, raped and left on the side of the road or murdered. This increase of drugs, sexual assaults, domestic violence, and sex trafficking puts a huge strain on shelters and advocates that already have limited resources

                 The conference, organized largely by Faith Spotted Eagle and the Brave Heart Society of the Ihanktonwan Dakota, not only plainly colored these connections, but allowed time for these groups to get to know one another, and collectively strategize about effective ways to fight back, and reduce the potential harm. Presentations by groups such as the White Buffalo Calf Women’s Society, that run shelters and do sexual assault prevention and survivor advocacy work, drove home the fact that reservation populations are already dealing with disproportionately high rates of sexual assault, domestic abuse, and human trafficking, and that these affect people across the gender spectrum. The collective understanding of the intersections of these issues as symptoms of a dominant patriarchal, settler society was not a source of defeatism. Rather it contextualized this struggle within a 500 year resistance to colonization on Turtle Island, and provided for creativity in thinking not only about defeating the KXL, but using those connections to continue fighting colonization and oppression on the Plains.

                  The White Buffalo Calf Woman Society provides assistance to Native American women who are survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. The group has been based out of the Rosebud reservation for 35 years. Now the White Buffalo Calf Woman Society must prepare for man camps that will be within 66 miles of the Rosebud Reservation. The Rosebud Sioux Tribe already faces the problem of predators preying on young native girls for sex trafficking. If the KXL pipeline is approved this exploitation will increase.

 

Faith Spotted Eagle and members of the Brave Heart Society at the Protect the Sacred Conference

Faith Spotted Eagle and members of the Brave Heart Society at the Protect the Sacred Conference

                 The Rosebud Sioux are not the only people at risk. There is a man camp planned to be within 10 miles of the Cheyenne River Reservation in “South Dakota,” an area that is 71% Native American and the fourth poorest county in the so-called United States. Poverty and limited resources leave the area at particular risk. In “Montana” a man camp will be 25 miles from the Fort Peck Reservation. In so-called Nebraska, man camps will be 50 miles from the Santee Reservation and 60 miles from the Yankton Reservation. The federal government has proven countless times that it does not care about Native Americans, which makes it easy for pipeliners to commit violence and prey on Native women with no repercussions. Government complicity in violence against women is a manifestation of continued colonization: dominant society violently repressing native populations by preying on those seen as most vulnerable.

                As anti-extraction activists trying to be good allies and in solidarity with indigenous peoples it is important for us to target man camps in our messaging, dialogue and actions. Native American Women advocating for survivors of sexual assaults on their reservations already have their hands full. As white settler allies, it is important for us to draw the connections and include in our dialogue the increased violence against women, specifically Native American women, that results from these extreme energy projects. If the Keystone XL pipeline is built, settler allies need to be on the front lines to confront the man camps.

 

Further readings/articles on Man Camps and Resistance:

narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/brenda-norrell/2013/08/native-americans-organize-halt-pipeline-man-camps-violence

 http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2013/08/white-buffalo-calf-society-protect.html

 http://lastrealindians.com/press-release-conference-to-educate-on-proposed-pipelines-man-camps-in-oceti-sakowin-territory-august-16-and-17/

 

 

Officer Strangelove, or: How We Learned To Stop Worrying and Get Shit Done.

Hey ya’ll! We’re taking a brief break from organizing, plannin’ awesome stuff, and doing a rad speaking tour, to let ya’ll know where we’re at and address the “infiltration” of our action camp. The term “Infiltration” sort of connotes that the fuzz [read: police, po-po, 5-0, etc] got access to a slew of confidential information by slowly gaining the trust of the group, which is simply not the case. To be completely honest, those sketchy macho dude-bros managed to do very little and only got the same information the rest of the hundred+ people got. It’s just how publicly announced action camps go. Anyone with a cell-phone could have called in the location of the action the morning of—but ya get the point. We got ‘em scared, so if ya want to take action, sign up on our sheet or shoot us an email at gptsresistance@riseup.net . If you can’t risk arrest or take some time to organize in your area, please consider donating. 

-J.

Officer Strangelove, or: How We Learned To Stop Worrying and Get Shit Done.

We’re not surprised, and neither are we scared. The police were obvious in their machismo and the quality of their observations was laughable at best. In terms of inter-agency communications, we know that the history of anti-colonial, anti-imperialist, anti-extraction resistance movements is permeated with government repression. We acknowledge surveillance as a far-cry from the type of repression that other groups and individuals experience, and stand in solidarity with those who have been incarcerated on fabricated charges (Leonard Peltier, just one of many) or have been physically attacked by the United States government with military force (the MOVE bombing, and countless other incidents).

Together we will build a movement that can weather any storm, but it starts right now with acknowledging that the roots of our struggle go back before “climate justice” was ever a term.

All that being said, we do feel the need to acknowledge that the surveillance and inter-agency communication regarding Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance and other groups is an indication of our effectiveness. Possibly it’s the threat of an analysis that views infrastructure as a strategic weak-point in attacking the dominant ecocidal system. Possibly it’s the threat the direct action poses to the exploitative extraction industry that relies on our complacency to tear the earth to shreds. And possibly, it’s the fact that what is happening on this continent—First People’s banding together and shutting shit down, the largest environmental demonstrations ever seen on this continent, the re-emergence of direct action as a legitimate tool in the eco-wars—constitutes a huge threat to the status quo and exploitative industry.

The FBI’s commencement of multiple surveillance operations during the Green Scare indicated a larger program of using COINTELPRO-like tactics to create an atmosphere of fear, distrust, and paranoia to divide our social movements. The Green Scare specifically targeted those engaged in direct action in order to prevent the proliferation of those tactics, and ensure that folks resign themselves to the “safer” modes of organizing which uphold and validate the same systems that are actively destroying wild spaces, the health of countless communities, and the planet as a whole.

With the possibility of heavy-handed government repression, it is even more crucial to support those engaged in direct action and those facing State repression.

And we’re excited to up the fight.

-GPTSR.