For these last few months, #RevolutionTruth has been working to help stop the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) at Standing Rock, ND. Our all-volunteer staff has worked behind the scenes on various legal remedies, consulted with the Water Protectors Legal Collective to prepare legal filings, and we provided key legal input that moved the ND Supreme Court to allow outside legal representation for Water Protectors.
RevolutionTruth’s legal team is now ready to take this struggle to the courts, via a multi-plaintiff lawsuit against Energy Transfer Partners (ETP). We intend to challenge the unsound and unjust rerouting of DAPL from a safer route just north of Bismarck to the current one bisecting treaty lands (taken lands according to our Native plaintiffs) and across a nearly 1.5 mile stretch beneath Lake Oahe.
Plaintiffs now include Sara Jumping Eagle, William “Wild Bill” Lefthand, Sr., Russell Vasquez and others from the Oglala Lakota, Standing Rock Sioux, Cheyenne River Sioux, and Pine Ridge Lakota tribes, and more are joining every day.
With your help, this lawsuit will first challenge the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) February 7th, 2017 decision to forego the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and curtail the 20-day public comment period – a decision that contradicts the Army Corps’ own directive and administrative rules.
Standing Rock is the tale of David and Goliath playing out on tribal treaty lands of the Great Sioux Nation in North Dakota. Goliath, which is Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), the Feds and the State, have engaged in human rights and civil liberties assaults against hundreds of Water Protectors (the Davids). Countless innocents have faced harm and intimidation as a result of trying to stand up for their most fundamental rights.
We have environmental and engineering experts prepared to testify to:
Industry specifications for leak testing are extraordinarily lax, as legislators and bureaucratic agencies have long been captive to moneyed interests, like ETP/Dakota Access LLC. These corporations, agencies, as well as both state and federal legislators, accept that all pipelines leak but consider that risk acceptable, ESPECIALLY if they are not themselves affected.
The North Dakota State Legislature just passed a bill making leak-reporting requirements even less stringent.
Finally, we have now seen the Army Corps, whose mission should preclude political bias, immediately bow to Trump-Administration demands, publicly repudiating its own work and profoundly undermining its own credibility.
DAPL construction has already deeply scarred tribal lands. This case will claim that the lands belonging to the sovereign Great Sioux Nation prior to and under the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851 are under the jurisdiction of NO U.S. governmental body, and that the USACE does not have the right to grant permits on these sovereign lands without the express consent of the affected indigenous nations.
Rerouting the pipeline away from Bismarck—(a 95% White community)—to the tribal lands of the Great Sioux Nation creates a profoundly disparate impact on one population over another: a clear case of environmental injustice and racial discrimination.
Under both federal and state governments, this Native population has suffered intergenerational trauma, illegal infringement of sovereign rights, societal marginalization, undue economic hardship, and racial discrimination.
DAPL is but the latest assault on the sacred lands and bodies of water of these sovereign tribes. It is thus an attack on the people themselves, their identity, and way of life. These past few months at Standing Rock have seen some of the more widespread and egregious civil liberties and human rights abuses to occur on U.S. soil in decades.
#RevolutionTruth stands with the hundreds of tribes and the thousands of allies gathered at Standing Rock. We know the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) was rerouted through land belonging to the tribes of the Great Sioux Nation without those tribes’ consent. We know safer alternatives were identified north of Bismarck, and that the pipeline rerouting involves a high-risk engineering feat beneath Lake Oahe. We know it is not a question of whether this pipeline will leak, but of when and where, threatening water sources for the Great Sioux Nation tribes and for some 18 million others downriver.
#RevolutionTruth stands in solidarity with the Great Sioux Nation to defend and protect their water and to defend their sovereign rights. We honor the prayerful and peaceful resistance of the Water Protectors. We recognize this as but the latest of many battles for the tribal treaty lands of the Great Sioux Nation over the last two centuries.
Standing Rock is a David and Goliath Story, but our opponent is not merely one giant. Rather, it is the many-headed Hydra of the Fossil-Fuel-Industrial Complex.
The anatomy of this beast consists of private corporations (such as ETP); the State (via weakened regulation and compromised federal and state agencies and local officials), Law Enforcement (through a disturbing conglomeration of militarized police, NGO security teams, the National Guard, and even the USACE with private DAPL security), the Big Banks, and Mainstream Media (which has largely ignored the peaceful prayer camp at Standing Rock, failed to report the egregious police violence to which these protestors have been subjected, and spread misleading stories, such as the December “victory,” which only served to dampen public interest).
We have witnessed this Hydra’s enforcement appendage engage in human rights and civil liberties assaults against thousands of unarmed peaceful Water Protectors; arresting, harming and intimidating men, women and children for the crime of standing up for their fundamental rights.
We’ve seen the USACE in recent days renege on its December denial of the easement and curtail the public comment period for the proposed Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).
#RevolutionTruth is an all-volunteer team. All donations will go directly to cover legal and related costs (court costs, expert witnesses, advocacy, plaintiffs’ travel expenses, and legal representation). Please note that donations are not tax-deductible at this time.