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PRAYER GATHERINGS CONTINUE
3rd WEEKEND OF EACH MONTH
& DEFEND YOUR RIGHTS!
of Surface Mining (OSM) Comment Period Extended for Black Mesa
Mine, N-aquifer Use
OSM Web Site - 04 FEB 2005
Two additional public meeting dates have been
scheduled, and the deadline for
submission of written comments concerning the fate of Peabody
Coal's Black Mesa mine and the use of the N- aquifer slurry line
has been extended.
For Details, click the above link.
Face Uncertain Future
Chairman Taylor laments lack of water, jobs and mine closures
Gallup Independent - 04 FEB 2005
FORT DEFIANCE — Loss of revenue from the closure
of Mohave Generating Station and Black Mesa Mine would force the
layoff of at least 150 of the Hopi Tribe's 500 employees. In
addition, 13 percent of the Navajo Nation government's non-mine
labor force would lose jobs along with 300 mine workers.
Tribal Chairman Wayne Taylor Jr., at the invitation of the
Arizona State Senate Natural Resources Committee, traveled to
Phoenix Wednesday to brief the group on potential impacts to the
tribes from the impending closures....
Hopi Tribe Media Advisory:
Wayne Taylor Addresses the Senate Natural Resource Committee
www.hopi.nsn.us - 31 JAN 2005
Hopi tribal chairman Wayne Taylor, Jr. will address
the Senate Natural Resource Committee on the threat to the
survival of the Hopi Tribe pending a possible closure of the
Mohave Generating Station in Laughlin, Nevada and the Black Mesa
The Hopi tribe is locked in a protracted legal
battle to keep the Mohave Generating Station in Laughlin, Nevada
open and operating.
The massive, coal-fired plant provides electrical
power to Southern California and potions of Arizona and Nevada.
The plant is fueled by coal mined at Black Mesa, which is
jointly owned by the Hopi Tribe and the Navajo Nation....
of Water for Coal Slurry Challenged in Flagstaff -
Navajo Times, hardcopy - 20 JAN 2005
FLAGSTAFF – Every seat in the Coconino County
board room was occupied and people squeezed around doorways to
raise questions about proposed changes in the operation of the
Kayenta and Black Mesa coalmines, located 125 miles northeast of
Jan. 13 meeting was held by the federal Office of Surface Mining
and Reclamation Enforcement, which must decide whether to issue
a revised permit to Peabody Western Coal Company for the mines.
proposed revisions include extending both mining operations to
2026, replacing 95 percent of the 273-miles Black Mesa coal
slurry pipeline and switching to a different ground water source
for the slurry.
Black Mesa coal is pulverized and mixed with water from the
Navajo aquifer to create slurry that is transported by pipeline
to the Mohave Generating Station at Laughlin, Nev.
by Native American and environmental groups to stop tapping the
Navajo aquifer, Peabody is proposing to use the Coconino aquifer
instead for most of its water needs.
However, the city of Flagstaff voiced concerns...
Will Get the Grazing Permits for Joint-use Land? - Gallup
Independent - 09 NOV 2004
PIÑON — What will be the criteria for reissuing
grazing permits to persons living on Navajo Partitioned Land?
Presently, no one knows. But the Navajo Nation has a 180-day
timeline to figure it out once the Bureau of Indian Affairs
publishes the final rule in the Federal Register.
"This is basically an ongoing discussion that
addresses the issue of who would be eligible to engage in
grazing activities within Navajo Partitioned Land (NPL) which
presently does not have any provision to have livestock,"
said George Arthur, Resources Committee chairman, following a
meeting on NPL grazing, held last week at Pinon Community
- 01 NOVEMBER 2004
Big Mountain - Bahe - Big Mountain - 01 NOV 2004
Big Mountain, AZ—Supporters for the traditional Dineh
resisting forced relocation have reported that BIA Hopi
Agency Law Enforcement Rangers have been monitoring the
resistance area intensely. On Sunday, October 31st, an
elder woman was forced not to collect vegetation for
ceremonial use. These supporters reported that it was
unusual to see law enforcement personnel very active on
a weekend. It is assumed that this is a campaign to stop
"unpermitted wood cutting" in the areas but
it goes further than that by keeping up the pressure of
harassments and intimidations to remind the Dineh
resisters to: "Give up. They lost the battle to
keep their lands!"
The supporters monitored the area to see why there
was an active surveillance and perhaps an impoundment of
animals might be taking place....
- 27 OCTOBER 2004
Support Needed for Dineh Resister - Bahe Y. Katenay - 27
A Dineh resister is facing numerous charges against
him for trying to live and care for his livestock. The Rena B.
Lane family has lived on the western margin of the Black Mesa
geography (and within what is known today as the
"HPL") for many generations. Because they have a
strong tie to their ancestral lands, they have never signed up
for relocation benefits, or the Accommodation Lease Agreement.
Jerry Lane, a traditionally inspired son of Rena, has had
run-ins with the BIA laws before regarding trespassing and
"illegal activites" which means using your lands
he faces more charges and he is due to appear in court at the
BIA-Hopi Agency court near Keams Canyon on the Hopi Indian
- 23 OCTOBER 2004
Face Continued Threats/Harassment - Bahe Y. Katenay
- 23 OCT 2004
I would like for you to take a moment
and remember that the traditional indigeneous resistance
still continues on Black Mesa. This resistance has obviously,
in previous decades, been an extreme expression of a
fight for liberation. It is of course not your typical
subtle expression of a politically, opinionated protest
that involves basic environment or heritage issues.
This traditional resistance has been a continuation
of the very core of a land-based, indigenous society's
struggle for survival....
Your prayers and support is very much
needed! I have been approached by individuals who are
concerned for the welfare of these resisters. And because
of the lack of a stable network and volunteer/support
personnel, we are unable to make a complete assessments
of the situation in the regions of resistance. It is
assumed that other elder and younger residents are experiencing
hardship at this time. Currently, there are two critical
hardships taking place....
Lawrence Altsisi needs support (though,
details are not specific yet). He is a Dineh resident
whose parents and relatives have abandoned the ancestral
lands for relocation benefits and now, he is still defying
orders from the BIA Hopi Agency Law Enforcement to either
relocate or sign the Accommodation Agreement. His only
means of transportation has been impounded by the BIA
Indian agency, and he is unable to haul firewood or
water to this residence. He resides about 6 miles SE
of the Rocky Ridge General Store. We will try to update
you more pending available time and resources to get
out there to visit with him....
Rena B. Lane and her son have also been
threatened and harassed. They reside in one of the most
remote region of Black Mesa. Due to the intense drought,
the Lane family had moved their sheep herd to a more
suitable grazing area within their ancestral ranging
area. The BIA Hopi Agency discovered the family's sheep
camp and began to threatened them with livestock impoundment
but they remained with the sheep camp until the herd
gained back its health. More recently, Rena's son was
preparing for the winter when the Agency law enforcement
personnel charged him again (for about the third time
now) with "illegally" cutting firewood. All
his tools were confiscated and with that he has lost
his second chainsaw to the BIA. Shortly after that their
only functioning vehicle has broken down and they are
now coping with transportation problems....
I wish to ask for your support on behalf
of these resisters...
- 08 AUGUST 2004
from the Land and Replies to Questions about Unity
- Bahe Y. Katenay - 08 AUG 2004
[Share with appropriate Big Mtn. update outlets and
friends. Author's Note: I have tried to make a couple of visits
into the Heart of the Resistance Territories to get a sense of
what is going on and what the resisters are saying. This is my
info gathering in the last three weeks. I do my best to convey and
translate the words and events to the best of my ability. Thanks
for your understanding. BYK, (UAP/August2004)]
Kee Watchman: The herds are healthy despite the
drought and there has been a good lambing season. Unfortunately,
the BIA-Hopi Rangers and Police are planning on conducting a
livestock count and they are obviously going to issue out orders
to reduce all the herds. This only applies to those residents who
have the Accommodation Lease Agreement but for those who never
signed that Agreement are still "illegally" grazing and
they have no permit....
Marks End of 30-year Wait: 82 Homes in Tuba City portion of
Bennett Freeze Receiving Electricity - The
Navajo Times - 23 JULY 2004
CITY–For Victoria Ben, 26, the recent groundbreaking
for an electric power line in the Bennett Freeze Area
means she and her two little boys can finally live next
to her grandmother.
lives in Chinle but she often visits her grandmother,
Ruth Tohonnie, who lives in the Bennett Freeze, west of
traditional Navajo shade house was the site for the
groundbreaking festivities July 12....
for Navajo Aquifer - Natasha Grail, Ft. Defiance, AZ -
10 JUNE 2004
My concern for the Black Mesa Coalition has brought
me to writing this imperative letter. I have been reading about
that area for sometime now and I have heard about how the U.S.
government has tried to move our people off of their own lands,
in order to get the coal which lies beneath them.
also concerned about the U.S. government pumping water out of
the Navajo Aquifer. They are pumping an estimated 300 gallons
every 10 seconds. This means over a billion gallons are being
pumped every year. Most of us don't know it, but we are losing
our only reliable source of water very rapidly. If this
continues it could be gone in 10 years....
Mesa Residents Concerned About Health, Lack of Electricity,
Relocation of Burial Sites
LA Times - 08 JUNE 2004
The Intergovernmental Relations Committee met May
26 at Forest Lake Chapter to hear concerns of citizens regarding
the upcoming possible closure of the Mohave Generating Station,
according to a press release from the speaker's office.
of those testifying spoke in Navajo before the committee.
Gilmore said that the mining companies make a lot of money, but
it doesn't benefit people at the local level. She said lack of
running water continues to be a problem in the area.
residents pointed out that there are Navajos living without
electricity while the energy from the mine goes to people in
California and Nevada....
Clouds: Arizona's Navajo and Hopi Tribes Have Won a Water-Rights
Battle Against the
Coal Company That Has Sustained Their Fragile Economies. But on
the Threshold of Victory,
a Sobering Question: Now What? - LA Times -
06 JUNE 2004
"Somewhere far away from us, people have no
understanding that their demand for cheap electricity, air
conditioning and lights 24 hours a day have contributed to the
imbalance of this very delicate place." — Nicole
Horseherder, Navajo, Black Mesa
years upon years beneath star-heavy skies, the Navajo awakened
before the sun rose over northeastern Arizona's Black Mesa to
guide their sheep to the natural waters of desert washes and
springs to beat the overwhelming heat of day. For those who kept
cattle in more modern times, they dug wells powered by windmills
to pump groundwater into drinking troughs. The Hopi, farmers
whose reservation borders Black Mesa's fringe, channeled these
same waters onto hillside terraces where they planted their
sacred and sustaining crops of corn.
that was when there was water on Black Mesa....
Harassed at Spring Gathering - Indian Country Today
- 01 JUNE 2004
BIG MOUNTAIN, Ariz. - In a climate of increased
militarization on American Indian lands by federal agents, an
FBI agent interrogated Navajos at the home of the late Roberta
Blackgoat on Big Mountain, during a spring gathering honoring
the late matriarch who fought forced relocation of Navajos.
"The FBI agent terrorized me for sure, all I
could think of was Ruby Ridge and Waco," said Danny
Blackgoat, son of Roberta Blackgoat, who follows his mother ’s
path of non-violent resistance.
"We don’t need any more harassment from the
Hopi Rangers or FBI. I would appeal to the indigenous people
throughout the country and throughout the world to give us
spiritual support. This land should be given back to the people
of Big Mountain. People are living under a lot of anguish.....
FROM BLACK MESA, ARIZONA
The Navajo-Hopi Land
Hopi Tribe Threatens to Demolish Living and Historic Navajo Home
May 10, during the 2004 Spring Survival Gathering, Hopi Tribal Officials approached guests of the family at
the Blackgoat home, a Navajo home site located on the disputed
Hopi Partition Land (HPL). Officials told the guests that they
should remove personal belongings from the structures there,
because the Hopi Tribe intends to level the home and the Hogan
(traditional round structure, used for living quarters as well as
for ceremonies). They also instructed the guests to move the
family’s livestock, as a herd of sheep still roams the hills as
they have for generations.
site was lived in by the late Roberta Blackgoat, an
internationally known Matriarch and great grandmother who traveled
the world educating the masses about the Dineh (Navajo) people’s
plight to remain on their land in order to practice their
religion. Blackgoat passed on April 23, 2002. Her children Danny,
Sheilah, Harry, and Vici still consider this place to be their
home, and they visit on weekends with their children, while
friends care for the site during the week....
Letter From Dineh Bahe Katenay
Blackgoat's Home Place Threatened
Fighting in a true revolution is difficult. That is why
a few of us continue to rekindle a struggle on Big
Mountain. A struggle that compose of much reality like
making a stand upon actual ancestral land. It is not
like making a stand on city property where the police
has given a permit to protest. It is not making a stand
where we claim a basic right of government privileges
such as Freedom of Religion or U.S. Constitution.
are a few because we stand for the Right of the Core of
Indigenous Beliefs. At Thin Rock Mesa in west central
Big Mountain, the late Roberta Blackgoat's home site
still sits with the life and all the glory of the belief
systems associated to the Sacred Mountain Soil Bundle of
the Dineh. This is true sovereignty. That is why the
U.S. Justice systems is coercing the Hopi tribal rangers
to be the point in this aggression to eliminate the
continuous, flickering flame of aboriginal
Big Mountain Spring Survival Gathering 2004
Sara Hayes, Director, SENAA West
Mountain Spring Survival Gathering 2004, held to honor the memory
of Grandmother Roberta Blackgoat, brought together supporters of
Diné People still residing on the HPL who
relocation. As a result of this gathering a sense
of renewal of this support emerged; it also allowed all who attended
to interact with one another, thus building the support network,
them the opportunity to interact with some of the residents and family
members who also attended. The numbers of those present varied as
there were comings and goings all the days of this gathering....
FROM BLACK MESA: MARCH 2004 - by Bahe Y. Katenay - 17
BIG MOUNTAIN (UAP*)—During the week of March 8th, the BIA-Hopi Agency Police and Range Technician arrested Dan Herder who tried to intervene while his cattle were being impounded. Though, Dan Herder resides on the "NPL" side of the
boundary his cattle had wondered into the many openings along the Partition Fence line. Another "NPL" resident's cattle were impounded as well. Kii Shey (or Kee Shay) whose cattle had also been entering the fence line in the same matter were spotted by the Range Technicians and eventually got
Hosts Navajo Rights Movement - Brenda Norrell,
Independent journalist - 18 JAN 2004
FARMINGTON, N.M. – Lyrics flowed like water,
beneath the Turquoise Sky, as the once-most racist town in
America opened its arms to the Navajo rights movement, ushered
in with the electro-beat of Irene Bedard and folk-rogue Keith
stage at the Farmington Civic Center, Navajo Vincent Craig sang
of the “yellow sand” which took the lives of Dine’
grandfathers, uncles and brothers; sheepherders and miners never
told of the dangers of uranium mining during the Cold War....
Aquifer Memo Gains Panel's OK - Gallup Independent
- 12 January 2004
WINDOW ROCK — The most important of eight bills
which Speaker Lawrence Morgan will sponsor later this month
concerns water use aimed at preventing a $35 million hit to the
11 of 12 members present, the Inter-government Relations
Committee, which Morgan chairs, blessed the memo of
understanding contract sponsored by Stanley Pollack, water
rights attorney in the tribal justice division.
Morgan had to break a 5-5 tie...
Symbol of Duty and Love - The
Navajo Times - 09 JAN 2004
TUBA CITY - She became
a symbol and hero to thousands of people around the world.
People who remember her recall a smile and a contagious laugh.
And to many more the
story of the late Spc. Lori Piestewa remains one of hope,
courage and ultimately inspiration....
feel left out in water accord process
- Part 2 - Gallup
Independent - 08 JAN 2004
FORT DEFIANCE — Though they might not agree on
every point, the Navajo grassroots and non-Navajo groups have
found common ground when it comes to a proposed settlement
agreement regarding use of the waters in the San Juan River
Basin. What they have in common, they say, is that neither voice
is being heard.
Monday evening's public meeting in Shiprock, several persons
expressed their displeasure at being left out of the process.
Among those were Norman Patrick Brown, a leader of the Navajo
grassroots group Diné Bidziil, and Steve Cone, a non-Navajo and
board member of Citizens Progressive Alliance and "electors
Concerned about Animas Water" (CAW). Though Cone did not
address the audience, he did get his point across to a long list
of recipients, including state and Navajo officials, via e-mail
prior to the meeting....
Doubt Fairness of San Juan River Water Rights Accord - Part 1
Gallup Independent - 07 JAN
SHIPROCK — Is the proposed water rights
settlement for the use of waters in the San Juan River Basin the
best deal for the Navajo people? That's what folks who attended
Monday night's public meeting in Shiprock wanted to know.
despite the eleventh-hour whirlwind courtship of the people by
officials in the Office of the New Mexico State Engineer and the
Navajo Nation Water Rights Commission, not everyone was
convinced the people's best interests were at the heart of the
deal, including Shiprock Chapter President Duane
of Navajo Water Rights Agreement Mounts - The Daily
Times - 17 DEC 2003
FARMINGTON — Critics accused the New Mexico state
water engineer and the Navajo Nation Monday of “railroading”
a proposed Navajo water rights settlement. The entities hoped to
have the agreement for the San Juan Basin to Congress by March
2004 — without enough time for water basin users to adequately
state, which released the agreement Dec. 5, has stipulated a
Jan. 15 deadline for public comment....
of Diversity - Arizona
Daily Sun - 17 DEC 2003
If a picture is worth a thousand words, about 20
students at Coconino High School -- many of whom are learning
English -- painted a novel.
students painted a mural with images representing their
cultures, northern Arizona, and the United States in the common
area of the school's main entrance.
was a really good idea because it represents different cultures,
and not just the state of Arizona, but our country," said
Jose Vargas, a CHS graduate and student mentor....
Could Reverse Course, OK Gaming - The Arizona
Republic - 17 DEC 2003
The Hopi Tribe of northern Arizona, facing a major
economic hit with the likely 2006 shutdown of the Mohave
Generating Station, could reverse years of gambling opposition
and try to cover its losses with a casino.
that would be up to the Hopi people to decide....
to Light up 18,000 Rez Homes - Gallup Independent -
16 DEC 2003
FORT DEFIANCE — The $27.3 billion federal
energy-water appropriations bill signed the first of December by
President George W. Bush includes funds to help bring
electricity to more Navajos, while a bill approved last week by
the House of Representatives, which has yet to come before the
Senate for a vote, contains funding for other projects affecting
the Navajo Nation....
Water Source Found for Peabody - Gallup Independent
- 12 DEC 2003
ROCK — A potential water source for Peabody's Black Mesa coal
mine and slurry line and the Hopi villages and Navajo chapters
in the area was revealed Thursday.
group represented by lobbyist Jeff Groscost, former speaker of
the Arizona House of Representatives, visited Navajo officials
Thursday to offer a potential water source which would allow
Peabody Energy to keep its reservation coal mines open as well
as solve Southern California Edison's problem with the
water-dependent fuel supply for its beleaguered Mohave
Generating Station at Laughlin, Nev....
Bush to Meet With Navajo Leaders? - Gallup
Independent - 12 DEC 2003
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A meeting with President Bush?
Nation President Joe Shirley, Jr., Vice President Frank Dayish,
Jr., and the executive branch cabinet members gathered with more
than 40 U.S. representatives on Monday to begin discussions of
the 2006 Federal Budget Process. At the historic meeting, Rep.
Rick Renzi (R-Ariz.)vowed to arrange a meeting with the Navajo
leadership and President George W. Bush....
BLACK MESA (BIG MOUNTAIN) RESISTANCE SUPPORTERS)
from the Sovereign Dineh Communities
- Received 22 NOV 2003
"Dineh Gathering Gives Navajo Leader More Than An Ear
Big Mountain, Black Mesa, AZ. The Sovereign
Dineh communities of Red Willow and Cactus Valley hosted a
meeting, where tribal officials were invited. Navajo Nation
President Joe Shirley was able to attend this meeting with
"HPL" resisters and residents. Numerous tribal council
members were in attendance, as well as independent attorneys for
Dineh resistors. A good number of traditional elders from local
and regional areas were present, and this showed an adequate
representation of remaining resistors from throughout the
900,000 acres partitioned by the U.S. government back in
Davison: Veteran and Veterans' Advocate
Voice in the Wilderness for Indigenous Americans
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