Defending Standing Rock
When: August 2016 - December 2016
Where: Sioux Territory, North Dakota
In 2016, there was a national emergency in Indian Country, and a plea for assistance went out for allies and Tribal communities to gather at the location of encounter near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota. Over 150 Tribal Nations and allies were in a standoff at the confluence of the Missouri and Cannonball rivers over plans for a 3.7 billion dollar crude oil pipeline that would run just outside of the boundary of the Standing Rock North Dakota Reservation. Pipeline construction would disturb sacred ceremonial sites, and there was fear it would pollute local drinking and ground water.
The direct threat of the Dakota Access Pipeline polluting sacred water, and refusal to comply with Federal treaties called Tribes of the Lower Klamath Basin to respond. The Bear River, Yurok, and Hoopa Tribes all publicly affirmed their commitment to stand with Standing Rock. The National Congress of American Indians and United Nations also declared support.
According to the Seattle Times, “More than 1,500 people from 150 tribes and their supporters from around the country...gathered at the confluence of the Cannonball and Missouri rivers, staging a nonviolent protest at what they call a spirit camp”. True North Organizing Network answered the call to support local Tribal members and allies to join the camp in North Dakota. On Friday, September 2nd, True North sent a second delegation of almost 50 Yurok, Karuk, and Hoopa Tribal members to North Dakota to set up a kitchen to feed the massive gathering of tribal members and allies. Local Native youth have been at the forefront of Klamath Basin support at standing rock.