tv Democracy Now LINKTV September 8, 2016 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
09/08/16 09/08/16 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from pacifica, this is democracy now! pres. obama: for people of laos, the war did not end when the bombs stopped falling. 80 million cluster munitions did not explode. they were spread across farmlands, jungles, villages, rivers. , theye last four decades lived under the shadow o of war. amy: as president t obama becoms the first u.s. president to visit lalaos, we look at the legacy of the u.s.s. bombingng
cacampaign during the war onon vietnanam. the u.s. droppededt least twoo million tons of bombmbs on laos- that's the equivalent of one planeload every eight minutes, 24 hours a day, for nine yearsr. this week, obamama pledged $9090 millllion to help clclear laos f the ununexploded u u.s. bombs. we'll speak with anan investigative reporting teamam o say it is not enouough. then, the obama administstration halaunched a n new push to approve the controversial trans-pacific partnership. pres. obama: i believe it will be ratified because it is the right thing to do. i believe we will get it done. but it is always going to be hard. nothing is easy in u.s. congress right now. amy: this comes as 200 of the country's lead us -- leaving economists and legal scholars have written a letter urging congress to reject the tpp, citing its controversial investor state dispute or settlement, so-called isds regime. critics say the provision
creates a parallel legal system granting multinational corporations undue power. we'll get reaction from public citizen's lori wallach. and the standoff at standing rock. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. scientists say they've linked climate change to torrential rain and flooding along the gulf coast, such as the deadly flooding in louisiana in august. the flooding last month killeded 13 people and displaced tens of thousands from their homes. scientists from the national oceanic and atmospheric administration and others say global warming makes it at least 40% more likely the u.s. gulf coast will be inundated by historic downpours. august was the wettest month in baton rouge in 174 years when record-keeping began. this comomes as both guatemala d greece experience deadly
rainfall and flooding. in guatemala, at least 10 people have died in mudslides amid intense rainfall outside guatemala city. this is a local fireman. meanwhile, flash flooding in greece has killed at least 4 people amid torrential downpours in the southern and northern parts of greece. in news from the campaign trail, hillary clintoton and donald trp both spoke at a national security forum held on the decommissioned aircraft carrieir intrepid in new york city wednesday night. this is donald trump. mr. trump: i have always said, shouldn't be thehere, but if wee going to get out, take the oil. if w we would have taken the oi, you would not have prices because ice is formed with the power and the wealth of that oil. >> how are we going to take the oil? >> mr. trump: yulia a certain group behihind and take various sections were they have the oil. amy: meanwhile, hillary clinton said she would not deploy ground troops into iraq and syryria, en
-- puttingnton: we are not ground troops into iraq ever again and we are not putting it into syria. we''re going to defeat isisis without committing american ground troops. amy: there are already thousands of u.s. troops currently in iraq and syria. donald trump's running mate, indiana governor mike pence, has contradicted trump, saying he not question whether president obama was born in the united states. over the years, trump has repeatedly made false claims that obama was not born in the u.s. speaking to reporters on wednesday, pence said -- "i believe barack k obama was bn in hawaii. i accept his birirthplace." donald trump, however, did not revise his position during an interview with bill o'reilly onn tuesday. do you think your birther position hasas hurt you amonong african-amerericans?
mr. trump: i have no i ia. i don't even talk about it ananymore. i don't know. i guess witith maybe some. i don't t know whyhy -- i don't thinkk -- you're the first one that has brought that up in a while. amy: over the years, donald trump has in a key figure in the birther movement. in mexico, the finance minister has been ousted following donald trump's visit to mexico city were trump met with mexicann president enrique pena nieto. minister luis videgaray was the main architect of trump's visit, which sparked outrage across mexico. only hours after trump and pena nieto's meeting, trump gave an immigration speech in phoenix, where he pledged to deport 2 million people within his first hour i in office. president obama continues his historic trip to laos, where he briefly spoke with philippine president rodrigo duterte, ahead of a dinner. the informal meeting came after obama canceled a more formal sit-down with duterte, after duterte called obama a "son of a whore."
meanwhile, while taking questions at a news conference in laos, obama was asked about the dakota access pipeline by a malaysian woman. >> my question is, in your capacicity, what c can you do to ensure the protection of the ancestor land to provide with clean water and also environmental justice is upheld. pres. obama: it is a great question. [applause] know, the way that native americans were tragic and one of the priorities that i have had restoring inis relationshipnerous
with native american tribes. i cannot give ed tells on this particular case. i would have to go back to my staff and find out how we are doing on this one. amy: this comes as resistance to the dakota access pipeline in north dakota builds across the united states. a group of nearly 20 canoes has launched from bismarck and is making its way down the missouri river on a three-day paddle to the standing rock sioux reservation. one of the canoe crew hails from tlingit and d haida tribes in alaska. in minneapolis, dozens of people protested at a u.s. bank branch on wednesday, demanding u.s. bank stop funding the dakota access pipeline. according to an investigation published by little sis, u.s. bank has extended a $175 million credit to o energy transfer partners, the company behind the pipeline. meanwhile, green party presidential nominee dr. jill stein and her running mate human rights activist ajamu baraka are facing misdemeanor charges in north dakota after stein spray
painted "i approve of this message" on a bulldozer and baraka spray painted "decolonization" on another piece of equipment during a protest tuesday against the pipeline's construction. baraka and stein will only be arrested if they return to north dakota. and more details may have emerged about the standoff on saturday. while it is not yet known which security working for dakota access was responsible for attacking native americans with dogs and pepper spray, it has emerged that one of the secure regards on-site may be an air force and army veteran who now works with the security company called torchlight usa llc. it was founded by a former marine officer who went on to do private consulting to the state department. -- tuchmanme to dr. says he provides "direct support u.s. government nato correlation and corporate initiatives jericho the security guard landon
, steele, is listed on torchlight's website as a company officer and advisor. he appears to be the same man photographed multiple times at the site of saturday's conflict, at times holding a dog. britain and france have pledge to build a "big, new wall" in the french port city of calais, amid an increasing crackdown against the refugees living there, many of whom are seeking to reach britain by stowing away on trucks on lorries headed through the channel tunnel. as many as 7000 refugees are currently living in the calais refugee camp, despite french authorities' repeated efforts to attempt to close the camp. the proposed 4 meter-high wall will seek to block refugees from entering the port's main road. this comes as a new unicef report says 50 million children have been displaced worldwide. the number of unaccompanied children who have applied for 2015m has tripled between
and 2014. to see our full report from calais, france, from the camp known as the jungle, the largest refugee camp in france, go too democracynynow.org. in connecticut, a judge has ordered the state to fundamentally overhaul its public education system, saying connecticut is "defaulting on its constitutional duty" and has "has left t rich schooool distrs to flourish and poor school districts to founder." the ruling is a response to a decade-long lawsuit arguing connecticut has failed to provide adequate funding for its poorer school districts. but wednesday's ruling goes far beyond school funding, and instead forces connecticut to change everything from teacher pay to graduation requirements. in addition to school district financing. in california, the oakland police department has fired four police officers and suspended seven others amid a massive scandal in which multiple oakland police officers are
facing allegations of statutory rape and human trafficking after allegedly having sex with an underage girl. the revelations, which began in june, rocked the oakland police department, forcing the ouster of three police chiefs within a week. oakland city officials announced the firing and suspension of the police officers on wednesday. however, none of the officers so far face criminal charges, despite allegations they engaged in statutory rape and human trafficking. and on wednesday, immigrants held a sit-in at the office of hillary clinton's vice presidential running mate senator tim kaine in manassas, virginia. among them were two women formerly held in family detention centers in texas. they called on kaine to take action to release 27 mothers who have been held with their chilildren at the berks family immigration prison in pennsylvania, in some cases for more than a year. senator kaine's office responded with a letter calling for five of the families at berks to be allowed to live with relatives in virginia. activists say the letter is the
first step toward a private bill that would automatically defer their deportations for the rest of the congressional session while they seek asylum. in related news, children held at berks say they will begin a strike against their studies on september 15 if authorities do not respond by then to an ongogoing hunger strike byby thr mothers to push for their release. the date is celebrated as independence day in centra america, where many of them are from. in a letter signed by students from 7 7th to 11th grade who hae en detainened almost 400 days, they say -- "it hurts to know ththat as the school year starts, we are here imprisoned, when one of the reasons why we left our countries is that we could not attend classes because of the threats that schools receive. we have a hard time concentrating because of the frustration we feel to be here in jail as criminals when in reality we are not." and those are some of the headlines.
this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. nermeen: and i'm nermeen shaikh. welcome to all of our listeners and viewers from around the country and around the world. we begin today's show with president obama's historic trip to laos, the first trip there by a sitting u.s. president. obama has so far refused to issue a formal apology for the secret u.s. bombing campaign in laos during the u.s. war in vietnam. from june 1964 to march 1973, the u.s. dropped at least t two mimillion tons of bombs on the small, landlocked southeast asian coununtry in what would become the largest bombing campaign in n history. that's s the equivalent of onee planeleload every eight t minut, 24 hours a a day, for ninine yes -- more ththan were dropped on rmany and jajapan during world war iiii laos authorities say as many as one e third of these bombs didit explode at t the time. presesident obamama has pledgeg0 millioion to helelp clear laos f
the unexploded u.s. bombs. pres. obama: for the united dates, one of the wars from our history is the conflict of the vietnam war. a long and complicated conflict that took the lives of many young brave americans. and also no despite its american name, what we call it, this war was not contained to vietnam. it includes many years of bombing in cambodia and here in laos. but for all of those years in the 1960's and 1970's, america's intervention here in laos was a secret to the american people who are separated by vast distances, a pacific ocean, and it was no internet and information did not flow as easily. for the people of laos, obviously, this war was no see great. over the course of roughly a decade, the united statess dropped more bombs on laos than germany and japan during world
war ii. some 270 millionon cluster bomblets were dropped on this country. amy: experts estimate that laos is littered with as many as 80 million "bombies," or bomblets -- baseball-sized bombs found inside cluster bombs. well, since the bombing stopped over four decades ago, tens of thousands of people hahave been injured or killed as a result. in 2013, democracy now! spoke to a bomb accident survivor and victim assistance advocate. he explained how a bomb exploded when he was an 8-year-old child collecting bamboo shoots. >> one day i went to find bamboo shoots to feed my family to make soup. i was digging them after that, the bomb exploded.
amy: like a bomblet exploded? >> yes. my village were net areas, we have a lot of the bombies. we don't know they are in the ground. when you're digging with bamboo shoots, the explode to me. i lost my left hand. me.s very difficult for amy: for more onon laos, we go w to albuquerque, new mexico, or we are joined by karen coates and jerry redfern. they are co-authors of "eternal harvest: the legacy of american bombs in laos." they are both senior fellows at the schuster institute for investigative journalism at brandeis university. their new piece for medium.com is titled, "obama's $90 million for bomb clearance in laos: it's not enough." karen coates and jerry redfern, welcome to democracy now!
welcome back. jerry, let's begin with you. your response to the $90 million that president obama has pledged to help whilst clear -- laos clear itself of these unexploded bombs. >> first of all, thank you for having us back on and good morning to both you and nermeen. the $90 million that obama pledged at first sounds like a lot, but really, when you run the math and do the numbers, you see it is actually a fairly nominal increase in the overall spending that america has been spending for the last several years for cleaning up the problem in laos. when you put it in context of the amount of u.s. -- unexploded bombs that remain in the ground at laos, it is a fairly small amount. nermeen: could you specify, jerry, how much is a percentage of these bombs have already been cleared? >> nobody knows.
that is kind of the problem. the numbers that everybody talks about and that you brought up, their accurate as far as we know. that said, we also note that is the low estimate of it. the 580,000 missions, we know there were many more. the records that the 580 missions came from our incomplete. large parts of the data source were destroyed and are missing. we also know that large numbers of airplanes that were sent to do bombing runs in vietnam, for example, came back over laos to bases in thailand on the way back would randomly drop their loads in laos and we are no records whatsoever of those loads that were dropped. so we don't actually know how much was dropped in the first place. we know it is more than the numbers we talk about. we can't say for percentage at all how much has been cleared to this point. loverms of land in laos, -- roughly 1% of what the experts believed to be the
contaminated area in laos has been clear to point. amy: in 2013, democracy now! manixia thor who leads an all-women bomb cleararance tm in laos. she explained what her work entails. >> every day as an all-female de-mining team, we try to find bomblets a land where people live and farm and work. emphasizing the importance of the job and the importance of clearance because it is people's lives. if they don't work the land, they don't need. amy: this is incredibly dangerous. >> very dangerous. i am afraid. other people are afraid. this work is necessary because there are so many bomblets and so it is necessary work. messagesked herer what
she has for americans. opppportunity too tell the american people about what is going g on in my country and the problem. the war may have ended 40 years ago, but for the people of laos, it hasn't. it is still very live for many of us in laos. the hope was that as people hear and understand the problems, the role be more support, momore awareness, and we will get additional support to do our work. , presidentcoates obama announced the $90 million. do you know how they arrivived t this number? t-rex i honestly don't. it is hard to say. amy: he did not quite offer an apology to laos. again, the amount of bombs that we are talking about that were dropped on this tiny country, if
you can explain -- one of the things that we said was the u.s. dropped at least 2 million tons of bombs on laos, the equivalent of one planeload every eight minutes 24 hours a day for nine years -- more than were dropped on germany and japan during world war ii. >> yes. i think what you're getting at is your asking how much will perhaps the increase in money be clearing going forward. -- it is a bit hard to say because it takes different amounts of money to clear different types of ordnance and when it is in the ground.d. we k know last year, roughly overall there were $40 million or bududgeted for roughly $40 million for clearance in laos. if you were to divide up $90 million by three over the three years there talking about
increasing roughly $30 million a year going forward. when we sort of did a back of the envelope calculation yesterday in the day before on how much extra clearance this can do, obama is roughly saying -- this is just a back of the envelope calculation -- maybe another 225,000 pieces of uxo and another 25,000 bombies. if you look at the overall estimate 80 million somome still in the ground, it is just a tiny fraction of what remains in laos at this moment. nermeen: karen coates, can you talk about the fact that president obama did not issue a formal apology for this bombing campaign and its continuing legacy and whether you expected him to issue a formal apology? issueid not expect him to a formal apology. i don't think that is typical of what a mac and presidents do in a situation like this.
i think the lao people would have loved to of heard an apology, but i'm not sure they necessarily expected one, either. what i do know from talking to many of people over the years is that they welcome his presence. toy welcome the opportunity create a new relationship with the united states as president obama has outlined. and so i have a lot of questions going forward as to what exactly is going to come of his statements about working with the lao peoplpl the lao government to help develop t the country, which is exactly the people we have talked to, survivors through the bombing campaigns, what they say today is that they want to put the war behindnd them. they want to grow in the future. and they would love the help of the united states government in doing that. nermeen: karen, one of the last
don't impacts of these bombs is to food in the country. because 80% of people in laos rely on their land to grow food. what is the impact of that on people there? >> the problems of unexploded bombs is it is an incredible impediment to food security because if you have bombs in your field or the possibility of bombs in your field, you are afraid to go out there and did. it is dangerous to dig in most of laos. as a farmer, you have to do that every day. people are constantly putting their lives at risk. there are large tracts of the country that could be put to agricultural use, but haven't been for 40 years because of the presence of bombs. amy: i want to go back to a b bb accident survivor and victim assistance advocate in laos. he spoke about the legacy of the u.s. bombing campaign against
of his couountry. >> the war ended many years ago, [indiscernible] i think the legacy of war is very, very important for our people, especially for the clearance and for victim assistance in laos. than 100 timese the unexploded in laos. now we also have many survivors waiting for support and help. survivor was a bomb and victim assistance advocate and laos. jerry, your final comment as president obama leaves laos?
>> i would like to say that are proximally 15,000 people who are -- stillctims of living in laos today who are physically directly affected by exploding ordnance. but millions of people in laos still live in fear of uxo in the ground. singer only 50,000 is a bit of a misnomer, perhaps, something that obama brought up. that said, i would also like to say, not to, is this being completely b bad -- it is great the u.s. did offeroree money to do further clearance, but we do feel he could do more. he could have offered more. amy: jerry redfern and karen coates, co-authors of "eternal harvest: the legacy of american bombs in laos." both senior fellows at the schuster institute for investigative journalism at brandeis university. atwill link to your piece medium.com titled, "obama's $90 million for bomb clearance in laos: it's not enough." when we come back, lori wallach on the tpp.
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace reportrt. i'm amy goodman with nermeen shaikh. nermeen: we turn now to the obama administration's new push to approve the trans-pacific partnership known as the tpp. this comes as more than 200 of the country's leading economic and legal scholars have written a letter to congress urging them
to reject the trade pact, citing its controversial investor-state dispute settlement -- the so-called isds regime. critics say the provision creates a parallel legal system granting multinational corporations undue power. the letter states -- "foreign corporations can succeed in lawsuits before isds tribunals even when domestic law would have clearly led to the rejection of those companies' claims." among the letter's signatories is obama's harvard law school mentor professor laurence tribe. senator elizabeth warren, an early opponent of the deal, said of isds -- "this provision empowers companies to challenge laws and regulations they don't like, with friendly corporate lawyers instead of judges deciding their disputes. congress should not approve a tpp agreement ththat includes isds." speaking in laos on wednesday, president obama said the deal should be approved. pres. obama: : on the merit, its smarart for america to do it.
and i have y y to hear a persuasive argument from the left or the right as to why we would not want to create a trade raises labort standards, raises envivironment wiwill standards, protects intellectualroperty, levels the playing field for r s. businesses, brings down terrorists. it is indisputable that it would create a betetr deal for us than the status quo. amy: that statement that he made in china before going to laos were he made a similar one. the trans-pacific partnership is a massive proposed trade deal that would encompass 12 pacific ririm nations, including the u., and 40% of the global economy. u.s. presidential nominees hillary clinton, donald trump , and dr. jill stein have all said they oppose the tpp. it has faced years of public
protests by those who say it benefits corporations at the expense of health and environmental regulations. to talk more about the tpp, we're joined now by lori wallach, director of public citizen's global trade watch and author of "the rise and fall of fast track trade authority." welcome back to democracacy now! you have president obama saying there is no good argument for why this should not be approved. your response? our leading -- nation leading economics and law professors made a very were the tppgument to go into place, literally, thousands of multinational corporations would be newly empowered to be able to sue the u.s. government in front of panels of three corporate attorneys who could order the government to pay unlimited soums including those expected future profits paid by us
taxpayers, and all the corporations would have to do is convince those lawyers that some ,.s. federal, state, local law regulation, court ruling, government action undermines the new rights and privileges that the tpp would grant them. and there is no appeal from these panels. these lawyers decide. and there is no limit on how much they can order taxpayers to pay. and if the tpp were to go into effect, literally overnight, the u.s. liability to face those attacks by a multinational corporations would double. there would be 9000 new companies who currently have no ability to do this from the big japanese manufacturing and financial firms to the australian financial mining companies and timber companies all over the u.s.. if you go to trade watch.org, we have a map with all of those companies and you can click and
say, look, here's a company that would newly be empowered. that is the answer to president obama. 9000 multinational corporations that newly could attack our laws, undermine our health and safety. amy: can you talk about laurence tribe? he is one of the signatories to ththe letter.. and his relationship t to president obama? >> often, president obamama describes larry tribe, who i also had for constitutional law at harvard law's goal, as his mentor. professor tribe was one of the eminent signatories of this -- he was he was joined by other prominent legal scholars and basically saying, many of them, by the way, including the economics professors who are supporters of free-trade -- and they're all saying, whatever you think of trade, the fact that the tpp includes this outrageous system
that would empower multinational corporations to skirt our domestic law system, second-guessing even our supreme court, raid our treasury over policies that our courts, our congress has said are totally fine, this alone makes the tpp unacceptable, whatever else you think about the other arguments made in its favor. and so the fact that professor tribe, who obviously president obama respects, part of this demand to congress to oppose the tpp is important and this letter follows up with a letter last year with fewer bigwigs sign on to it, but the same, a letter that had a lot of law professors saying, listen, we are against the isds. take it out of the tpp so we don't have a problem with your agreement. as you recall, the president was extremely scornful about that letter and saying they're making stuff up.
this horrible corporate resume in the agreement. it is at the heart of the agreement, the key to the agreement. and now all of these professors are against it. d'amico could you talk about the timing of this letter and what you think the impact will be? >> what is extremely perverse and is limits professor sachs was on a press call yesterday was senator warren and other signatories said was right now you have the president and the officials and vice president biden running around pushing tpp in conflict and to the peril of someone argue, the election goals of hillary clinton and her prospects for winning in certain states where these issues are very important, the lines are being blurred. but also, many congressisional d senate candidates are also running strongly against the tpp , and the president is
prioritizing, trying to get a vote after the election in the lame-duck period. this should be a signal to almost every american. this i is an agreement soo repugnant that members of congress do not want to vote for it. even the ones who support it for the corporations do not want it on their r record before an election. so as americans, we all have to think, what does that mean for us? what does that mean for our duty? our duty is to get to every member of commerce before the election to tell us what is the position on tpp. the only way there is not a vote in the lame-duck pereriod after the election when the retired anil he fired good to come back and accountable to you the voter and have a vote, is if we get them on the record publicly now. particularly, your house members. find your house members. they will be back all of october up until the election, but every weekend in september, they will
be there and they will be there for long weeeekends because it s election season, doing public events. we have to get them to eyeball is and say whether position is, get them to say they are against the tpp. that is the only way there will not be a vote passing this agreement slimy stytyle in thee lameme-duck. amy: senator tim kaine, has he been asked specifically about this whether he would vote in the lame-duck? >> what is fastening, senator kaine voted for the authority fast track to have the tpp negotiated. he was asked shortly after being selected by clinton what his position is on tpp because he is a big free trader. whathe said is pretty much the law profofessor said yesterday, which is there are some things i'm happy with, i think they're good ideas about having this kind of agreement, but i cannot live with the investor state corporate tribunals. the dispute system, as he called it, is not acceptable to him. amy: cannot be taken out? >> that is what is interesting.
secretary clinton said she does not support the tpp and r five think she's that would have to be altered. the tpp's investor state system is its heart. yes, it could be taken out and some of the other things that she has mentioned are the big goodies that corporations want. so, yes, there could be a real honest to god trade agreement about cutting border taxes that hasn't become hijacked by all of this other corporate garbage. that is an agrgreement i suspect would face a lot of opposition. that would be something very different. that would be a very different agreement than one is the tpp. amy: were you surprised by president obama using, well, his trip to china, laos, southeast asian nations summit to push so hard for tpp? does this signify sosomething to you? >> on the one hand, it signifies what all of the polling shows,
which is the tpp is super unpopular in the u.s. and the majorities of democrats and republicans don't like it. so i guess he is when you get a more welcome greeting pushing the tpp someplace in asia. but -- but, it also shows to me how did serious he is about pushing this thing. so we're seeing some of the republican congressional leaders who are negotiating to get obama to m make certain changes in t e agreement for theieir different orbit donors and they've been saying things like,e, oh, we're not going to have a vote. folks, do not believe that for two seconds. that is negotiating. the fact that the cabinet was fanned out during august recess across the couountry -- crossing paths with democrats were trying to get elected, undermining their saying they're against tpp by saying that topop democrats r tpp, and that all of the corporations are starting to throw money into it. and today, this very day, there's a meeting at the white house they have called and all the corporate lobbieses to gearp for a fight for tpp in the
lame-duck. this fight is on. the only way we the people are going to stop tpp -- which we've gottenen close to doing against all odds -- is we must find every member of the house of representatives, wherever you live, look in the blue pages and call their offices and find out when they have open houses. ask where you can be youour memr of congress in your area. there are doing lots of public events. it is house members that count. shake their hands in the parade. do not letet go until you get tm to eyeball you and say they will vote no on the tpp. you have to do before the election. amy: we have to leave it there, , author of "the rise and fall of fast track trade authority." stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with nermeen shaikh. theeen: we turn now to standoff at standing rock. on saturday september 3, the dakota access pipeline at least dogs and pepper spray a native americans seeking to protect a sacred tribal burial site from destruction. >> this guy maced me in my face. it is all over my sunglasses. face.ed me in my
>> they're threatening us with these dogs. that woman over there, she was theging them -- right in face. amy: the dog has blood in its nose and mouth. >> and she is still standing here threatening. amy: wire you letting her. go after -- walking. i was look at this. look at this. it bit. and you go to see the full report of democracy now! which has gone viral on facebook, more than 11 million hits, go to democracynow.org. only a few hours before the attack, we sat down with standing rock historian ladonna allard to speak about another attack against her tribe, more 1863, thes ago in
u.s. army massacred more than 300 members of the standing rock sioux tribe in what became known as the white stone massacre. ladonna allard is not only the trouble historian, she is one of the founders of the sacred stone camp to resist the dakota access pipeline. we met her this past saturday on her property at the sacred stone camp. we just came from m the main c p and there was a yellow helicopter hovering overhead. what about the militarization of the area, ladonna? >> from the time we started the camp april 1, the helicopters and the planes, low-flying planes, have been here almost daily on a routine. we have the drones that come in in the evening. they come in at night. they come through the whole camp. and when the peoeople wewere gathering, the planes were numerous. the helicopters are numerous here. we have been under surveillance -- today, we have quite a large
boats out in the river over by the access site. of course with the blockades that we are suffering the governor of north dakota wants and economicnomic condition on us. if you stop the economic seer -- amy: you mean like an embargo? quick yes, have the roadsds blocked off. b bloade.conomic >es, and no one is allowed acaccess d down here. we have to t take milton route o mamake it here. we have police everywhere that are racial profiling because the it can go through. we cannot. theybody here understands drones. what we have been doing is recording the times of day that each drone and helicopter as they come through. we already know their patterns. they have been here so much and we know there photographing the whole area. donewe had the road grader
here, they were like massive, helicopters, the planes come in the drones were all sent in to see what are those indians doing? we arare just fixing the road. amy: why don't we sit down and talk about your family history here. yoyour family has been here for generations. 1873 when wence were brought across from the east side of the river. my name is ladonna brave bull allard. "her good earth woman." i am lakota, dakota, but i was raised dakota. prorobablysidide world doesn't understand that, but we understand it here. the the historian of
standing rock sioux tribe. amy: we are speaking on september 3, thehe weekend of labor day. this is a very important anniversary. >> i did not even know it was labor day. this is september 3. ago, the ago, 53 years white stone massacre happened, which the people in this community, the cannonball community, are from descendents of that massacre. we're the survivors of that massacre. one of the things i how we say is, this massacre happened in america forgot they killed us. we have spent this time trying to figure out how to survive so we were the wrong indians that they killed at that time. wars were warriors -- happening in 1863.
so the government put up this armed forces to go after -- they put this military action together. on the morning of september 3, our people were gathered come as we do every year this time, we gather because it is harvest time. the fruit and vegetables are ready. it is a time when we are doing the buffalo call and we have ceremonies called the buffaloes for people to come to hunt so we can prepare the meat for winter. this is what was happening at whitestone at that time. ofwe have a large gathering 4000 people. i think that is kind of unique. almost 4000 people are here. so we had all of these communities coming together to go into this trade. and if people are preparing buffalo hides and getting dry mead ready, there are also visiting, making relatives, having marriages -- all of these
things are happening in this camp. they say the soldiers are coming. our leaders said, we of never had an argument with the white people. we have only been at peace. we do not have a treaty with them. so our people got together and said, we heard that if you take a white flag, they will honor that to talk with us. sackey took a white flour and put it on a stick in our leaders went out into the soldiers to say they wanted to talk. amy: your grandfather was one of them? >> yes. my father was the medicine man. brave buffalo. he was among them with the chief. they went to talk to the soldiers. the soldiers surrounded him and took him as a prisoner of war. so the people were watching. just like we are taught,
automatically if there is in them economy, we gather dust the enemy coming, we gather the children, the women. people were trying to move. the first things the limited is they tied the babies to the dogs. they tied the children to the horses and they shooed them out of the camp. then they gathered what they could and they started running. at the camp, at whitestone, they came down and there is this ravine. so the people started making the way down to the ravine. us thatnd of bizarre to the soldiers came in just as the sun was going down. so they were going to the ravine. the soldiers came on top of the ravine in this top of the ravine and started shooting the women and children in the ravine. and one of our soldiers went out in front and broke the open so that people could continue running. alling,ight is f
my grandma was running and she said all of the sudden she had a sharp pain in her hip and she fell down. ground and she "pent the night calling "mom! with no answer. she could your the crying and screams of people dying. as the sun came over and she could see everything that was happening, two of the soldiers came and grabbed her and threw her in the back of a buckboard. i am unsure of why that happened because they went around and killed the other wounded. why they did not to my grandmother, i do not know. so she laid in the buck board as she watched the soldiers come and start killing the dogs and the babies, killing the horses, killing the wounded.
they gathered up all of our hidesty, the tents, meat, in every thing we own. they were poking holes in the bottom of our pots. they gathered all of that and they started this great big fire burning all of our food, homes, everything. they said that there was so much buffalo meat that they burned that it ran down like rivers out into the creeks. in the people ran for three to four days as the soldiers continued to chase and kill them. part of our people came across here -- this used to be a narrow crossing where they crossed. they crossed over on this side of the river to get from the soldiers. and one of the things that we always say at this massacre is they forgot they killed us. and we were not even the right indians. chiefs rounded up our and escorted them, forced march
them to the river and put them on boats and took the people to the prisoner of war camps. my grandmother was one of them that went to the prisoner of war camps. you would have to go do the research about the horrifying things that happened at the prisoner of war camps. but they released us. 1870, we came back to the east side of the river and started our home. the army came in in 1873 and rounded up our people and brought us to the side of the river. and when they did that, we figured, ok, we can start our lives. we can do this again. so our people started communities. they started living again. my grandma told me in the 1940's, we were self-sufficient. we planted our own gardens, owned our own cattle. everybody in her own committee, owned our own homes. made1948, the government the big sloan at, which is the army corps. the army corps decided to build
a dam above us and build one below as. they designated as as a reservoir. they came and moved our people out of their homes. they took our homes and moved them up into the communities and put in low income housing. amy: you lost millions of acres? .> we lost whole communities whole communities had to move. people -- somee of you said, well, did -- i lived here. and theer the trees forest. i remember coming down and collecting water to drink from this river. we would come down and haul water up to the house. we drink this water. we lived with this water. we had huge gardens here. this is me. this is not something a long time ago. this is me who lived through
this. they came in a flooded -- they took all of our trees and forests when a flooded us. they took all of our medicines, power plants, things that we survive in. so if you talk to the people that are my age and older, you can hear the grief in her voice because we still grieve for the loss of this land. they moved us on top of the hill it is a is more -- difffficult soil and the could o longer plant trees, grow gardens come to the things that we did. then they put them in communities where people were not used to living. so we have these housing projects now. housing projects, low income housing where they could not own. our communities changed drastically, but we figured, we can do this. we can survive. so everybody came. at that time -- i don't know of people understand, at that time when the army corps came in, we have businesses. we had stores.
we had restaurants. the army corps of engineers out all of these businesses and they never came back and developed again, so we don't have infrastructure anymore. we do not have the gas stations and the stores. --have a tribal they took her economic infrastructure from us. so we started again. we have a system. everybody shares what we have. we started again. we're trying to survive. we are trying to live our lives. we are very proud of the fact that our people fought in the wars. each of us get up and stand up and say our families military history every year. he won theher was -- i wel medal for one world -
were not your citizens. my brothers are vietnam. uncles are korean. all of my cousins are in every action that has happened thereafter. we hold some of the highest medals of honor and so we thought we were doing the best we can with america. told us that were putting this pipeline in, but refusing to acknowledge u us --f you look at the dakota access maps, they donon't even acknowowledge our nation. we're not blacked out like some peoplele -- me people make maps when they dodo the reservations, but t we' n not en in t there. they saiaid they do nonot have o consult with us. that pipeleline is 500 feet from our reservation line. when that pipeline breaks -- and it will break. it will hit early head start children in two seconds. it will take out our elementary and five seconds.
in 45 minutes, it will take out our major water intake that takes water to all of the people here. i do not understand why we are expendable in america. i keep telling people, we do our best. we have always been here most of this is our land. why should we fight to live on our own land? why should we have to do that over and over again? we start our lives, we do our best to live. why? i would never hurt anybody. i have always done my best to do good things in our community. why can't they just let us live? we love this land. and half of the time i feel bad because they make us feel bad for loving this land. but most important, we love the water. every year our people sacrifice. we go four days without drinking water so that it reminds us how
important this water is. and i ask everybody, do you go four days without water? what happens to her body on the third day? it starts shutting down. so we remind ourselves every day how important. it is water of life. every time we drink water, we say water of life. we cannot live without water. i don't understand why america doesn't understand how i importt water is. so we have no choice. we have to stand. no matter what happens, we have to stand to save the water. amy: tribal historian for the standing rock sioux tribe, ladonna allard. 3.king to us on september it was the 153rd anniversary of the white stone massacre when the u.s. army killed 300 members of the standing rock sioux