Army unit wanted to learn from Wounded Knee 'mistakes'

The Colorado Army National Guard wanted to learn from the "mistakes" of the past with a visit to the Oglala Sioux Tribe of South Dakota.

But the unit was turned away when three helicopters tried to land on the Pine Ridge Reservation on Saturday morning. Some tribal members thought landing near the Wounded Knee massacre site was disrespectful to the 300 people who were killed and victimized by the 7th Cavalry on December 29, 1890.

"Why would you want military helicopters landing at the Wounded Knee massacre site?" Belva Hollow Horn, whose ancestors survived the massacre, told The Sioux Falls Argus Leader. "That is totally insulting."

One helicopter landed but took off after less than a minute. The other helicopters never landed, the paper reported.

“While the Battle of Wounded Knee is a dark chapter in the history of the Army, without learning from the mistakes of our past we are doomed to repeat them,” Capt. Michael Odgers, a public affairs officer, said in a statement to the apper. “This trip was taken to better understand our shared histories, and we hope those who protested the visit can begin to understand our motives.”

President Theresa Two Bulls wanted the Army unit to hear from massacre descendants but took the blame for not communicating about the visit more closely.

Get the Story:
Wounded Knee landing called insult to memories (The Sioux Falls Argus Leader 5/4)
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