Friday, July 11, 2008

Mohawk activists and journalists beaten at the Canadian border, within days of "PM's apology"

I am absolutely stunned by the following story. clearly I haven't been paying attention to the right media sources lately:

The editor, Kahentinetha Horn, and researcher, Katenies, of Mohawk Nation News were taken from their car and beaten by a reported combination of police and border guards when travelling to the Canadian side of their reservation, [June 14, 2008] which straddles claimed American and Canadian territory.

Kahentinetha Horn suffered a heart attack during the beating and was delayed medical attention during her captivity.

This occurred mere days after Prime Minister Stephen Harper's "apology" for the brutalisation and cultural genocide of Canadian Native People's at the hands of Government agencies and third-party brain-washers.

Wasn't there some sort of memo sent out to the police forces and other sundry fascists of the federal government that Canada was now sorry for this kind of behaviour? When you apologise for cultural genocide on one day and then brutalise Native activists and journalists on the next, then -clearly- the message is not getting through.

But... the thing that really cheeses me off is that there has not been a single whiff of this, that I can find, on the CBC or other mainstream news. Not even on CBC's "CBC Aboriginal" portal.
"The apology has been made, move along, there's nothing to see here."

What the f#@k is wrong with this picture?

Ms. Horn is recovering from the attack, after leaving the hospital. She counts this as the third attempt on her life by Canadian authorities.
"... In 1990, she was targeted by a sniper at Oka. In 1995, she was beaten by police..."

And why would she be targeted? Clearly, she is an incendiary journalist, characterising the Prime Minister's apology as "Canada confesses to murder and rape of Indian people". Which was not an untruth, but apparently not in the spirit of forgiveness and apathy that may have been the hoped-for result of such an apology.

The only newspaper reference to the incident that I have found (online version) is from the Cornwall Standard-Freeholder, in Southern Ontario.
"... Boots said the encounter was the latest in a string of intimidating acts by local border guards against Mohawk women.
"They want the right to carry these pistols," said Boots, referring to the federal government's ongoing plan to train and arm Canada's border guards.
"If they create sufficient incidents then the powers that be will say, 'Yes, you can have these pistols..."

Ultimately, I am incredibly disappointed.
A good friend of mine, non-Native, asked me if I thought that the apology was sincere. I told him that the timing was suspicious (looming election call, anyone) and that actions would speak louder than words. He felt that I was overly pessimistic and paranoid. I hate to have my position supported, so soon.

Keep your eye on Mohawk territory, it's where the people are speaking the loudest for their unsolved land claims and ignored treaty rights, and where Native voices are under attack.
Right now.

Update, July 14, 2008: [From the office of the Ontario Minister of Aboriginal Affairs. Mostly politically-neutral, non-committal, aide-driven weaselspeak]
"Dear Mr. Keast:

The Honourable Michael Bryant, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs, has asked that I respond to your email of July 11 regarding an incident at the Canadian border near Cornwall involving two Mohawk elders. As these matters are currently before the courts, it would not be appropriate for the Minister to comment on the specific allegations. I can assure you that improving our relationship with First Nation, M├ętis and Inuit is a priority for the Minister.

The Ontario Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs does not have any jurisdiction over the Canada Border Services Agency. The agency is part of the federal government and falls under the responsibility of Public Safety Canada. As such, you may wish to bring your concerns to the attention of The Honourable Stockwell Day, federal Minister of Public Safety. You may write to the federal Minister at the House of Commons, Ottawa ON K1A 0A6. You may email the federal Minister through the Public Safety Canada website at


David Fraser
Correspondence Manager"


1 comment:

Ainslie said...

Asking for your opinion and then calling you paranoid. I hate it when that happens.