Chairman Harold Frazier of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe addresses a meeting of the United South and Eastern Tribes in Arlington, Virginia, on March 4, 2019. Photo by Indianz.Com (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0)

Harold Frazier: Keystone XL Pipeline threatens treaty territory

Statement regarding the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals dismissal of legal challenge to Keystone XL tar sand pipeline case

9th Circuit Court of Appeals Order: Indigenous Environmental Network v. U.S. Department of State

Today is yet another example of the legal thuggery that has been a hallmark of United States policy towards native life of this land. Citing the fact that the President of the United States issued another permit makes the case no longer active, even though there is an active case on the original permit.

This pipeline is slated to cross hundreds of miles across our treaty territories that the United States had pledged to protect through treaties. It will cross upriver from the reservation we have been forced to live on so close it will at times cross our reservation boundaries.

It is these kinds of disgusting legal maneuvers that have raped my people of our lands and treasures. The legal weapons of mass destruction that have decimated our population is aimed at our land and future.

Where is the protection against foreign people that this administration has promised the American people? Or is the simple answer that we are not considered American people?

It is sad that the rule of law can be overruled by the white man’s rule of greed while we are persecuted for even attempting to protest this travesty. Again, the Federal government has failed us and our land.

This land is not the land of the free, ask any Indian. It is no longer the land of the brave when you cannot face your opponents.

We will continue to fight and resist this destructive Federally-sponsored danger to our land. This is merely another desperate attempt to make the morally wrong into legally right by the President of the United States.

Harold Frazier is serving his third term as chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, based in South Dakota. He previously served as vice chair of his tribe and previously as an area vice president for the National Congress of American Indians.

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