This afternoon, in a move widely predicted by environmental activists around the world, the US Army Corps of Engineers announced that it has now given Dakota Transfer Partners the go ahead to complete the final section of the North Dakota Access Pipeline. Opponents of the scheme have denounced the move as a form of deregulating the regulatory process, with the US government going against its own guidelines and disregarding its own recommendations within the system.
In an interview with Kim Brown of the independent Baltimore based news service RNN, Nick Tilsen, the founding Executive Director of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, and himself a citizen of the of Oglala Lakota Nation, described the move as ‘A Total Violation of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples’ as well as the Rights of the Environment: a key element within the framework of existing international Human Rights legislation. Reference to the Army Corps of Engineers own website, and the US Military’s own recently published ‘Statement of Intent’ is suggestive of the entire process having been railroaded through in the wake of a Presidential Executive Order signed by Donald Trump: a fact reported by the Russian news service RT earlier in the day.
In the closing minutes of his interview with TRNN Nick Tilsen told Kim Brown that, to the best of his knowledge, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe would be applying for a Temporary Restraining Order or ‘TRO’ and are likely to strive for a ‘Summary Judgement’ that the Army Corps of Engineers doesn’t have the premise or right to approve the easement that is currently threatening to move things forward. This would appear to confirm that the North Dakota Standing Rock Sioux Tribe are set to challenge the granting of the easement through the courts. A fact also reported earlier by Russia Today.
Elsewhere, on the Common Dreams website, reference was made to a report by Bloomberg that seemed to suggest that in addition to granting the easement to Dakota Transfer Partners, in order to help them to complete work under Lake Oahe in line with the Executive Order previously referred to, President Trump had also expressed his intention to revive the TransCanada Corp.’s Keystone XL pipeline. Another highly unpopular move likely to lead to widespread opposition from Environmental Groups worldwide.
Meanwhile, a statement on the ‘Indigenous Rising‘ website announced a ‘Mass Mobilization to Stop Keystone XL Pipeline and Dakota Access Pipeline’ among Indigenous Groups. Something that is likely to put them on a collision course with the Trump Administration. On the same web page Joye Braun, an organizer from the Cheyenne River Sioux, was quoted as saying, “Donald Trump has declared war on Indigenous nations across the country. This pipeline runs right through the traditional lands of the great Sioux Nation. Attacks on our lands, sovereignty, and health must stop. We will fight using prayer and non-violent direct action to stop Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, and we will not back down.”
Having begun his career as a junior researcher at Thames Television in London, he has written for a wide range of publications including 'The Brighton Reporter', 'Durham Town and Country', 'The Brighton and Hove People' and 'The New Celtic Review'. As an exhibited film maker he has been a regular contributor and award nominee at the Portobello Film Festival in London; and has seen his work shown at the annual London Film Makers' Convention at the prestigious Round House Theatre.
As well as receiving enthusiastic reviews from BBC Radio 4 and others for his book on Sir Walter Scott, his pioneering work as an Underground Film Maker on the fledgeling Goa Trance Scene has set him in a field of his own amongst many of his contemporaries; both in the UK, where he presently resides, and elsewhere. Current projects presently in hand include a book centred on his 'Legendary London' series of documentary films, which have stimulated an enthusiastic response from the likes of Glenda Jackson and others; and a novel set in France and Edinburgh during the eighteenth century Scottish Enlightenment.
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