- O pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth,
- That I am meek and gentle with these butchers!
- Thou art the ruins of the noblest
- who ever lived in the tide of times.
- Woe to the hand that shed this costly blood!
- (Julius Caesar, Act 3:1)
- A Moment of Reflection ...
- If only we in Canada had an ounce of Marc Antony's outrage
when it comes to murder in our midst.
- All the "honorable men" who slew Caesar had
the weight of law on their side, as do the officials of church and state
in our country who legally killed generations of innocent children in the
"Indian residential schools", and who now absolve themselves
of their crime.
- Can we dare to ask for pardon from the slaughtered children,
for our meek gentleness with their butchers?
- Can we ask them to forgive us, when we watch a recent
CBC TV broadcast in which Irene Favel described seeing a newborn baby shoved
live into a roaring furnace by a priest in Saskatchewan, and we do nothing?
- Why should we be forgiven? Who are we to issue an "apology"
for our crimes when we refuse to be held accountable for them? When names
are not allowed to be named? When priests and nuns are allowed to get away
with murder? And when "misconduct" in residential schools cannot
even be referred to at the government's upcoming "Truth and Reconciliation"
- Crimes without criminals. Words without substance. That
is the Canadian way.
- Looking Back, and Forward:
- Written on Squamish Nation Territory, under Foreign Occupation
- July 21, 2008
- Over the past year, the impossible has happened: the
government and churches of Canada have been forced for the first time to
publicly acknowledge that massive numbers of children died in their Indian
residential schools, and that many of these deaths were criminal in nature.
- But the predictable has accompanied the impossible: the
very same guilty parties have responded to this exposure by effectively
absolving themselves of this crime with a verbal "apology" and
a self-appointed "inquiry" that is structured to ensure that
the crime will be officially whitewashed.
- Nothing less can be expected in a place like Canada,
where the institutions that ran the residential schools are still in power
and call the shots, with the help of their aboriginal collaborators.
- But rather than being a cause of despair, this predictable
scramble by the guilty to hide their filth is yet another crumbling piece
of masonry in the collapsing facade called colonial Canada, which has never
resolved what it likes to call its "Indian Problem" - and never
- Only in an insecure and guilt-haunted nation could the
fact of missing aboriginal children generate the enormous turmoil and change
that we've witnessed in Canada since April of 2007, when the Harper government
was forced to address the missing residential school children in Parliament.
- The media scramble that resulted, and has never abated,
hovers around the issue of dead residential school kids like a voyeuristic
John, watching but not daring to touch all those mass graves. And yet two
years ago, the topic was strictly forbidden and censored in the monopolized
corporate media in Canada. Today, the Establishment seems to be struggling
to gradually acclimatize the populace to the fact of genocide in their
- This is all a repeat, but on a bigger scale, of what
was tried a decade or more ago, when the first lawsuits by residential
school survivors threatened to nail the Catholic, Anglican and United churches
to the wall. By slowly leaking to the public some aspects of the residential
school nightmare in small, digestible pieces, the media and the courts
contained the potentially-explosive issue to yet another ho-hum abuse litigation,
complete with "apologies" and "compensation".
- Back then, by reducing genocide to a matter of personal
injury claims, Canada spared itself what it's now forced to face: its own
history of deliberately exterminating aboriginal nations. But, then as
now, the strategy of the guilty churches and state seems to be identical:
namely, to minimize and contain the issue by pretending to address it whole
not addressing it.
- Just as the so-called "Aboriginal Healing Fund"
contained the fallout of residential school lawsuits with hush money to
survivors, so now does the misnamed "Truth and Reconciliation Commission"
(TRC) appear to inquire into missing children by studiously preventing
any actual disclosure of their fate.
- A simple reading of the TRC mandate reveals an alarming
deception. While portraying itself as the definitive investigation into
Indian residential schools, the TRC in fact is not an investigative body
or a legal inquiry; it has no power to subpoena or compel involvement,
does not allow the naming of the names of perpetrators, and will not allow
any statement involving wrongdoing by a person or organization; nor does
it extend immunity or protection to anyone offering evidence.
- In short, the TRC is an explicit whitewash of any criminal
behaviour in the residential schools. Imagine a "final report"
on these schools that has not a single mention of misconduct in it!
- Again, this is precisely what one expects when church
lawyers and officials like the United Church's former Moderator Bill Phipps
- a TRC convenor - establish an inquiry into themselves. And yet, this
whole effort by the guilty is doomed to failure.
- For one thing, the crime is too huge to contain. Since
April 10, we have documented and released to the press thirty-three mass
grave sites across Canada near former residential schools, where countless
children are reputedly buried. In response, I have been inundated with
stories from eyewitnesses who buried children, witnessed the incineration
of others, and who saw killings and other crimes in the schools. And many
of these stories have appeared in the media.
- But what is especially encouraging and unusual about
this disclosure is that it is being accompanied by a new wave of lawsuits
against the churches responsible for these deaths, brought by relatives
of children who were killed. For the first time, the churches and government
of Canada are being named in criminal lawsuits for acts of murder.
- It gets even better. In some cases, like on Squamish
territory in what whites call Vancouver, these lawsuits will be launched
not through Canadian courts of law, which have time and again disqualified
claims involving murder, but in aboriginal courts of Justice, convened
by traditional elders like Squamish Chief Kiapilano.
- In other words, raising the spectre of murdered children
is unleashing a revolutionary challenge to Canada and its courts, as survivors
and other native people invoke their own sovereignty to win justice.
- This fact raises the second problem of Canada's attempt
to co-opt and contain its culpability for genocide: namely, that there
is no consensus "at the top" of how to deal with the threat of
indigenous sovereignty. The power of the Canadian establishment is too
fractured and regionalized to devise a common response to the growing breakdown
of native peoples' imprisonment in their own land.
- Today, the Canadian state does not have a single, credible
group of collaborating native elites to impose a uniform "Indian policy"
across the nations, which means that any effort to simply shut down or
contain the furor over missing residential school children will meet with
failure. The growing native populaces, restless, off reserve and plagued
by poverty and discontent, are too diverse to be so easily managed anymore.
- This fact highlights the third roadblock to any easy
resolution of the residential school crimes: the particularly vulnerable
position of Canada in the world economy as an exporting and tourist nation,
and the battering its "humanitarian" image and credit rating
have taken as a result of the residential school scandal.
- One of the main reasons behind the creation of the fraudulent
"Truth and Reconciliation Commission" was the need to create
a convincing public relations front to the world during the period leading
up to the 2010 Olympics in British Columbia, a region that is the hotbed
of independent native protest and non-treatied communities.
- The Canadian elites - native and white - are terrified
of the prospect of native road and railway blockades during the B.C. Olympics,
disrupting as these will the "new relationship" between these
elites in their efforts to secure new foreign export markets for Canadian
resources, most of which are located on unceded native land. An upstart
aboriginal bourgeoisie is acting as the chief arm of the Canadian state
in securing these markets, especially with Asian countries, and restraining
protests by their own people in the process.
- Nevertheless, all of these factors add up to a single
truth: Canada and its churches - and their aboriginal accomplices - will
be unable to extricate themselves from their liability for their crimes,
and therefore will remain extremely vulnerable to any public criticism
or protest campaigns aimed at exposing the full extent of the residential
- The Implications for Us, and the Challenge
- Until recently, the movement to bring Canada and its
churches to justice for genocide has been localized and relatively unpopular,
even among supposed "progressives and radicals". And yet its
impact on events has been profound, and has forced Canada's back to the
wall, simply by continuing to make public the hard evidence of death and
torture in residential schools.
- This work is finally paying off, as our efforts are stimulating
a much broader reaction among even mainstream Canadians, and we are linking
up with more disgruntled residential school survivors and aboriginal youth.
There are now twenty six local groups across Canada working with our network,
organizing protests, documenting evidence, and educating the world about
the Canadian holocaust.
- As the frustration of survivors continues to grow with
their loss of any avenue for resolving their claims, as the bogus "TRC"
exposes itself as Canada's version of the Warren Commission, and as the
puppet native chiefs continue to become alienated from their own people,
a huge crisis of leadership is emerging in the aboriginal world.
- This crisis has created a unique opportunity for those
committed to indigenous sovereignty and full justice for residential school
survivors. What is lacking is the audacity, the networks, and the overall
strategy to begin uprooting the causes of genocide and the colonial political-economic
system that is ruining our lands and people.
- Last April 15, ten indigenous elders launched their answer
to the government's TRC: an independent "International Human Rights
Tribunal into Genocide in Canada". That Tribunal will begin its work
this autumn, by convening local inquiries into deaths and other crimes
in residential schools, in open opposition to the TRC.
- As part of its work, this Tribunal will begin enforcing
the Eviction Notices issued by Squamish hereditary Chief Kiapilano against
the Catholic, Anglican and United churches on his territory, in "Vancouver".
We will claim these buildings and lands as our Mohawk cousins are doing
in their land reclamation battle in "Ontario". And within these
liberated zones, we will be establishing popular courts of justice to try
and convict those persons and organizations responsible for the residential
- Until September 15, I will be travelling in Europe and
elsewhere to gain new international allies for this campaign and cause.
Let us begin planning for this "hot autumn" by planning local
Tribunals and direct actions of sovereignty and reclamation in all of our
communities, against the churches, corporations and government responsible
for the murder of our peoples.
- May our hearts and courage rise to this challenge. Spread
- I am your brother,
- Kevin Annett Eagle Strong Voice
- for the Tribunal and sovereignty campaign
- Read and Hear the truth of Genocide in Canada, past and
present, at this website: www.hiddenfromhistory.org
- "Kevin is more deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize
than many who have received it in the past."
- - Dr. Noam Chomsky
- Institute Professor Emeritus
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- "A courageous and inspiring man." (referring
to Kevin Annett)
- - Mairead Corrigan-Maguire
- Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
- Belfast , Northern Ireland
- The very lands we all along enjoyed
- they ravished from the people they destroyed ...
- All the long pretenses of descent
- are shams of right to prop up government.
- ' Tis all invasion, usurpation all;
- ' Tis all by fraud and force that we possess,
- and length of time can make no crime the less;
- Religion's always on the strongest side.
- Daniel Defoe, Jure Divino (England, 1706)