31 July 2005

Catholics Reach Out To Non-Christians

In this day and age, this is most refreshing news to read! Hopefully, this trend will spread like wild flowers after the Spring rain...

Mitakuye Oyasin

Catholic hospital adds meditation room for non-Christians


BISMARCK, N.D. -- Sherman Iron Shield used to sneak his son behind some elevators at St. Alexius Medical Center to burn sacred herbs, hoping to chase away evil spirits without setting off fire alarms and sprinklers.

The practice, known as smudging, along with modern medicine, helped his son, George, recover from a gunshot wound to the head nearly a dozen years ago, he said.

"My son is still alive," Iron Shield said.

On Thursday, the hospital dedicated a $350,000 solarium and meditation room that may be used for such things as burning sage, cedar or sweetgrass, or for singing or drumming.

Sister Renee Zastoupil, director of pastoral programs for St. Alexius, said the meditation room is the first of its kind.

"We know that it just is," she said.

The meditation room, 12 feet by 20 feet, is intended to serve people of non-Christian faiths, or those "for whom the main chapel is not suitable," Zastoupil said.

John Eagle Shield, a member of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, helped push to get the meditation room at the hospital so American Indians could practice their sacred traditions.

"We have had a lot of tribal people come here in the past who have said they were the victims of misunderstanding," Eagle Shield said. "A lot of people were reluctant to come here."

Eagle Shield said the meditation room was several years in the making, and was a result of "sensitivity sessions" held with the hospital.

"It's a special place," Eagle Shield said. He and Iron Shield burned sacred herbs to dedicate the room.

The room features a window on the northeast side so Muslims can pray toward Mecca.

Syed Hassan, a physician at St. Alexius, said he and the dozen or so other Muslim doctors at the hospital would use the room for daily prayer.

Hassan said the window was "maybe not an exact straight shot" toward Mecca, "but it's good enough."

"We are all children of God," Hassan told the crowd of about 200 people at the dedication ceremony on Thursday. "We are more similar than otherwise."

The hospital has published rules for use of the room. The use of peyote and other drugs is prohibited, as is the "practice of any religion or act which is diametrically opposed to the Roman Catholic Church." The hospital lists "Satanism, Wicca and Voodoo" as examples.

Nancy Willis, director of marketing for St. Alexius, said the number of American Indian admissions at the hospital increased 79 percent between 1998 and 2002.

Willis said 8 percent of the hospital's 72,000 admissions in 2002 were Indians. She said 24 percent of the trauma patients admitted to the hospital were Indians, and three-fourths of those were from the Standing Rock reservation, which straddles the border between North Dakota and South Dakota.

Eagle Shield said the increase in Indian patients at the Roman Catholic hospital was due to lack of funding at reservation clinics and hospitals.

"There are a lot of special services that they can't provide," Eagle Shield said.

The meditation room has an exhaust system to suck out smoke from seashell bowls of burning sage, cedar and sweetgrass, and it is soundproof to hush singing and drumming.

Eagle Shield said "traditional healers" also would use the room to work with patients.

"The traditional healing will compliment Western healing, so we can get the best of both worlds," he said.

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On the Beach...


30 July 2005

Secret Service Pretender...?

What the...!!!

One would think, in the face of the so-call "War on Terror", that impersonating a Federal officer, should arouse at least some curiousity from the so-called Department of Homeland Security. Shouldn't it...?


No Charges in Ouster

Feds Won't Pursue Man Who Ejected 3 From Bush Event

By Ann Imse, Rocky Mountain News
July 30, 2005

Federal prosecutors have declined to press charges of impersonating a Secret Service agent against a White House volunteer who ousted three people from a speech by President Bush in Denver on March 21.

The announcement was made Friday in a letter to Colorado Sen. Ken Salazar and Reps. Mark Udall and Diana DeGette, all Democrats, who had asked for a Secret Service investigation into the incident.

The three, Alex Young, 26; Karen Bauer, 38; and Leslie Weise, 39, said they were told by the Secret Service that the man admitted ejecting them because they arrived at the event in a car with a "No more blood for oil" bumper sticker.

U.S. Attorney William Leone said the investigation was "thorough and complete."

"I am certain that the Secret Service would demand, and our office would aggressively prosecute, any person who was found to be impersonating a Secret Service agent if the facts warranted such a prosecution," Leone said in a statement. "This is not such a case."

He added, "Criminal law is not an appropriate tool to resolve this dispute. The normal give and take of the political system is the appropriate venue for a resolution."

Young, Bauer, and Weise were bounced from Bush's appearance at the Wings over the Rockies museum at the former Lowry Air Force Base. The event was part of the president's national tour to promote changes to Social Security.

The trio, who have been nicknamed the Denver Three, said the event staffer who confronted them was dressed like a Secret Service agent, wearing a suit, radio earpiece and lapel pin that identifies people with security clearance. The Secret Service has said the man was not an agent.

Bauer and Weise say they were pulled aside at the gate and were told by another event staffer to wait for the Secret Service. They said the man who showed up threatened them with arrest if they misbehaved.

The three are involved in a pol itical group called the Denver Progressives. They admitted to wearing T-shirts under their clothing that said, "No more lies." They said they considered revealing the T-shirts, but decided before arriving at the event not to do so.

Later, though they had done nothing disruptive, they were forced to leave by the man they thought was a Secret Service agent.

The incident raised questions in Congress about whether the man had committed the crime of impersonating a federal officer. However, the man did not tell the three he was an agent, which apparently factored in to Leone's decision.

"The person in question took no affirmative steps that one would need to prove a claim that he was impersonating a federal officer," said Jeff Dorschner, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office. He said the man did not identify himself as a federal agent and did not display a credential, a badge or other identification.

The Secret Service refused to name the man because he was not charged.

"It's very disappointing," Weise said. "We were really looking to this investigation for some answers. To date we have received none."

"Clearly, our rights were violated, and no one is being held accountable," she said.

Dan Recht, an attorney for Bauer, Weise and Young, said his clients plan to pursue a civil lawsuit against the man, accusing him of violating their free speech rights and assaulting them.

"We don't know who it was, but we'll find out who it was and we'll sue him," Recht said. "I'm disappointed but not surprised charges won't be filed, but it remains to be seen whether the Secret Service did a thorough investigation."

Secret Service spokesman Jonathan Cherry declined to comment.

Because the president's visit was a public event paid for by taxpayers, considerable debate has erupted over whether it was legal to bar people because of their pol-itical speech. Eight of Colorado's nine members of Congress have objected to the idea of ejecting people over a bumper sticker.

But White House press secretary Scott McClellan backed the trio's ouster, saying in April, "If we think people are coming to the event to disrupt it, obviously, they're going to be asked to leave."

The White House has described the man as a "White House volunteer" and refused to identify him.

Congressman Mark Udall, D-Colo., took issue with the investigation, saying "it's puzzling that the Secret Service would take four months to come up with nothing."

"Frankly, if the Secret Service and White House have nothing to hide, and if no law was broken, don't the American people have a right to know the results of the investigation and who was responsible for ejecting the Denver Three," Udall said in a statement.

DeGette chided the White House, saying, "The removal of three Coloradans from a public, taxpayer-funded presidential event on Social Security does nothing to foster civil discussion."

Salazar said he was disturbed because three people were not allowed to participate in a public meeting on Social Security. "As elected officials, we should be encouraging, not discouraging, public participation in open and thoughtful discussions on our nation's most important matters."

The 2005 Darwin Awards

One of my friends sent this to me. Be sure to read them in order, don't cheat and scroll straight to the winner...



Goes to a San Anselmo, California man who died when he hit a lift tower at the Mammoth Mountain ski area while riding down the slope on a foam pad. 22-year old David Hubal was pronounced dead at Central Mammoth Hospital. The accident occurred about 3 a.m., the Mono County Sheriff's department said. Hubal and his friends apparently had hiked up a ski run called Stump alley and undid some yellow foam protectors from lift towers, said Lt. Mike Donnelly of the Mammoth Lakes Police Department. The pads are used to protect skiers who might hit towers. The group apparently used the pads to slide down the ski slope and Hubal crashed into a tower. It has since been investigated and determined the tower he hit was the one with its pad removed.


Goes to Robert Puelo, 32, was apparently being disorderly in a St. Louis market. When the clerk threatened to call the police, Puelo grabbed a hot dog, shoved it into his mouth and walked out without paying. Police found him unconscious in front of the store. Paramedics removed the six-inch wiener from his throat where it had choked him to death.


Goes to poacher Marino Malerba of Spain, who shot a stag standing above him on an overhanging rock and was killed instantly when it fell on him.


"Man loses face at party." A man at a West Virginia party (probably
related to the winner last year, a man in Arkansas who used the .22 bullet to replace the fuse in his pickup truck) popped a blasting cap into his mouth and bit down, triggering an explosion that blew off his lips, teeth, and tongue. Jerry Stromyer, 24, of Kincaid, bit the blasting cap as a prank during the party late Tuesday night, said Cpl. M.D. Payne. "Another man had it in an aquarium hooked to a battery and was trying to explode it. It wouldn't go off and this guy said I'll show you how to set it off." He put it into his mouth, bit down and it blew all his teeth out and his lips and tongue off, Payne said. Stromyer was listed in guarded condition Wednesday with extensive facial injuries, according to a spokesperson at Charleston Area Medical Division. "I just can't imagine anyone doing something like that," Payne said.


Doctors at Portland University Hospital said an Oregon man shot through the skull by a hunting arrow is lucky to be alive and will be released soon from the hospital. Tony Roberts, 25, lost his right eye last weekend during an initiation into a men's rafting club, Mountain Men Anonymous (probably known now as Stupid Mountain Men Anonymous) in Grants Pass, Oregon. A friend tried to shoot a beer can off his head, but the arrow entered Robert's right eye.
Doctors said that had the arrow gone 1 millimeter to the left, a major
blood vessel would have been cut and Roberts would have died instantly. Neurosurgeon, Doctor Johnny Delashaw, at the University Hospital in Portland said the arrow went through 8 to 10 inches of brain with the tip protruding at the rear of his skull, yet somehow managed to miss all major blood vessels. Delashaw also said that had Roberts tried to pull the arrow out on his own he surely would have killed himself. Roberts admitted afterwards that he and his friends had been drinking that afternoon. Said Roberts, "I feel so dumb about this." No charges have been filed, but theJosephine County district attorney's office said the initiation stunt is under investigation.


Concluded from the evidence left…(The late) John Pernicky and his friend, (the late) Sal Hawkins, of the great state of Washington, decided to attend a local Metallica concert at the George Washington amphitheater. Having no tickets (but having had 18 beers between them), they thought it would be easy to "hop" over the nine-foot fence and sneak into the show. They pulled their pickup truck over to the fence and the plan was for Mr. Pernicky, who was 100 pounds heavier than Mr. Hawkins, to hop the fence and then assist his friend over.

Unfortunately for (the late) Mr. Pernicky, there was a 30-foot drop on the other side of the fence. Having heaved himself over, he found himself crashing through a tree. His fall was abruptly halted (and broken, along with his arm) by a large branch that snagged him by his shorts. Dangling from the tree with a broken arm, he looked down and saw some bushes below him. Possibly figuring the bushes would break his fall; he removed his pocketknife and proceeded to cut away his shorts to free himself from the tree. Finally free, Mr. Pernicky crashed into holly bushes. The sharp leaves scratched his ENTIRE body and now, without the protection of his shorts, a holly branch penetrated his rectum. To make matters worse, upon landing his pocketknife penetrated his thigh. Hawkins, seeing his friendin considerable pain and agony, threw him a rope and tried to pull him to safety by tying the rope to the pickup truck and slowly driving away. However, in his drunken haste, he put the truck into reverse and crashed through the fence landing on his friend and killing him. Police arrived to find the crashed pickup with its driver thrown 100 feet from the truck and dead at the scene from massive internal injuries. Upon moving the truck, they found John under it half-naked, scratches on his body, a holly stick in his rectum, a knife in his thigh, and his shorts dangling from a tree branch 25 feet in the air.

Congratulations gentlemen. You win.

28 July 2005

Quote of the Day

"Foremost in my tortured mind is the thought that there can never be peace in Ireland until the foreign oppressive British presence is removed, leaving all the Irish people as a unit to control their own affairs and determine their own destiny as a sovereign people, free in mind and body, separate and distinct physically, culturally and economically..."

~~Bobby Sands (1954-1981) IRA Volunteer, POW, MP

The War Is Over? WHO Won the War?

This somewhat stunning announce was issued early this morning (EDT). I do not know what this really means at this point in time, but I sincerely hope that it functions to transform the possibility of a free and united Ireland into a political and social inevitability.

Fáilte go dtí Sinn Féin Loch gCarman ar an idirlíon

IRA Statement in Full

The IRA's full statement, in which its leadership ordered an end to the armed campaign:

The leadership of Oglaigh na hEireann has formally ordered an end to the armed campaign.

This will take effect from 4pm [1600 BST] this afternoon.

All IRA units have been ordered to dump arms.

All Volunteers have been instructed to assist the development of purely political and democratic programmes through exclusively peaceful means.

Volunteers must not engage in any other activities whatsoever.

The IRA leadership has also authorised our representative to engage with the IICD [Independent International Commission on Decommissioning] to complete the process to verifiably put its arms beyond use in a way which will further enhance public confidence and to conclude this as quickly as possible.

We have invited two independent witnesses, from the Protestant and Catholic churches, to testify to this.

The Army Council took these decisions following an unprecedented internal discussion and consultation process with IRA units and Volunteers.

We appreciate the honest and forthright way in which the consultation process was carried out and the depth and content of the submissions.

We are proud of the comradely way in which this truly historic discussion was conducted. The outcome of our consultations show very strong support among IRA Volunteers for the Sinn Fein peace strategy.

There is also widespread concern about the failure of the two governments and the unionists to fully engage in the peace process.

This has created real difficulties. The overwhelming majority of people in Ireland fully support this process.

They and friends of Irish unity throughout the world want to see the full implementation of the Good Friday Agreement.

Notwithstanding these difficulties our decisions have been taken to advance our republican and democratic objectives, including our goal of a united Ireland.

We believe there is now an alternative way to achieve this and to end British rule in our country. It is the responsibility of all Volunteers to show leadership, determination and courage.

We are very mindful of the sacrifices of our patriot dead, those who went to jail, Volunteers, their families and the wider republican base.

We reiterate our view that the armed struggle was entirely legitimate. We are conscious that many people suffered in the conflict.

There is a compelling imperative on all sides to build a just and lasting peace. The issue of the defence of nationalist and republican communities has been raised with us.

There is a responsibility on society to ensure that there is no re-occurrence of the pogroms of 1969 and the early 1970s.

There is also a universal responsibility to tackle sectarianism in all its forms.

The IRA is fully committed to the goals of Irish unity and independence and to building the Republic outlined in the 1916 Proclamation.

We call for maximum unity and effort by Irish republicans everywhere. We are confident that by working together Irish republicans can achieve our objectives.

Every Volunteer is aware of the import of the decisions we have taken and all Oglaigh are compelled to fully comply with these orders.

There is now an unprecedented opportunity to utilise the considerable energy and goodwill which there is for the peace process.

This comprehensive series of unparalleled initiatives is our contribution to this and to the continued endeavours to bring about independence and unity for the people of Ireland.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/28 12:01:52 GMT


24 July 2005

"So Terribly Sorry Old Chap..."

Once again, the LAPD--oops! I meant to say, yet again the NYPD--oh sh*t! Wait a minute! You mean to tell me that the Metropolitan Police, Scotland Yard, have suddenly gotten blind and trigger happy...?

...And, uh, "sorry" is all they can come up with? Damn!!! Oh yeah he also said "...somebody else could be shot."



Police Chief 'Sorry' Over Death

Met Police chief Sir Ian Blair has apologised to the family of the Brazilian man shot dead by police in south London on Friday.

He said the death of Jean Charles de Menezes was a "tragedy", but admitted more people could be shot as police hunt suspected suicide bombers.

The 27-year-old electrician's family condemned the shooting and said there was no reason to suspect him.

Meanwhile a third man has been arrested by police under the Terrorism Act.

Police said on Sunday that the man was arrested in Tulse Hill, south London, on Saturday evening. He is the third man to be questioned under the Terrorism Act.

Home Secretary Charles Clarke described the shooting of Mr Menezes as an "absolute tragedy".

Mr Menezes, who lived in Tulse Hill, was completely unconnected to Thursday's attempted bombings, Scotland Yard has confirmed.

The shooting is being investigated by Scotland Yard's Directorate of Professional Standards, and will be referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

Sunday's other developments include:

* Police have been given more time to question two other men arrested in Stockwell on Friday under the Terrorism Act.

* Alex Pereira retraced the final movements of Mr Menezes, his cousin, in an emotional protest.

* Met Police deputy assistant commissioner Brian Paddick met community leaders in Stockwell to discuss the shooting.

* Searches continue in the area a suspect package was found in Little Wormwood Scrubs, possibly linked to the failed attacks. The package was removed for forensic examination after several controlled explosions.

* Officers are still searching an address raided on Saturday in Streatham Hill, south London, in connection with the failed attacks.

Sir Ian told Sky News: "This is a tragedy. The Metropolitan Police accepts full responsibility. To the family I can only express my deep regrets."

He said there was no reason to believe the four men sought over the failed bombings - whose images caught on CCTV were released on Friday - had left the country.

He acknowledged "somebody else could be shot" as the hunt continued, but added "everything is done to make it right".

But he said the "shoot to kill" policy for dealing with suspected suicide bombers would remain in force.

Mr Clarke told the BBC: "I very, very much regret what happened.

"I hope [the family] understand the police were trying to do their very best under very difficult circumstances."

On the ongoing bombings investigation, "good progress" was being made thanks to "tremendous support" from the public.

Mr Clarke said he was postponing joining his family on holiday because of the current crisis.

Mr Menezes's family is struggling to come to terms with his death.

'Police incompetence'

Mr Pereira, from London, told the BBC: "Apologies are not enough. I believe my cousin's death was result of police incompetence."

Describing his cousin as a "person full of life" he said he had been "a victim of government's mistakes".

Mr Menezes was from the city of Gonzaga in Minas Gerais state and had lived in London for over three years.

Mr Menezes' grandmother, Zilda Ambrosia de Figueiredo, told Globo TV "there was no reason to think he was a terrorist".

The body of Mr Menezes is to be taken back to Brazil as soon as possible.

Brazil's foreign minister Celso Amorim met Foreign Office officials in London on Sunday to seek an explanation for the shooting.

'Shocked and perplexed'

"The Brazilian government and the public are shocked and perplexed that a peaceful and innocent person should have been killed," he said.

"Brazil is totally in solidarity with Britain in the fight against terror but people should be cautious to avoid the loss of innocent life."

He spoke by phone to Mr Straw, who he said promised a full investigation into the death.

"I said that was very important. We can't recover the life of the Brazilian citizen who has been killed, but we can discover the details."

He will meet Mr Straw in person on Monday evening.

The BBC's correspondent in Brazil, Tom Gibb, said Mr Menezes had lived for a time in a slum district of Sao Paulo and that could explain why he had run from the police.

1: Jean Charles de Menezes leaves a house under surveillance and arrives at Stockwell station
2: Witnesses say he vaults the automatic ticket barriers and heads for the platforms
3: He then ran down an escalator after being approached by up to 20 plain-clothed police officers and tried to board a train
4: He apparently refuses to obey police instructions and after running onto a northbound Northern line train, he is shot dead

Born 07/01/78, a Brazilian national
Originally from the city of Gonzaga, 500 miles northeast of Sao Paulo in the south-eastern state of Minas Gerais in Brazil
Moved to Sao Paulo at age 14
Lived in London for three years, working as an electrician

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/24 17:49:29 GMT


23 July 2005


This is for anyone who watched the conclusion of "Into the West" this weekend and wants to know more about what was shown.



Wovoka or Jack Wilson, was a spiritual leader whose influence  was so great that  many considered him  a prophet of our Great Father.

Wovoka was born in Smith Valley in 1856, the son of a medicine man named Numu-Taibo or "White Indian".  After  a  mystical  revelation  during a  trance that  oc curred during  an eclipse,  he was given power by  the Great  Father  to  control  the natural elements.  There were several instances when Wovoka demonstrated his power,  one of which occurred at a place called Circle in  Smith Valley.  Several men pitching hay for a local rancher saw him coming and began yelling and taunting  him, "There goes the rain maker. Make  it  rain."
Wovoka  made  the rain fall only on the spot where the men  were  haying.  He also caused it  to  rain  during droughts. Another demonstration of his power was when he caused ice to float down  the river during the summer.  Once  he  was  shot  by  a  fellow  hunter.
Everyone  gathered around him to see how badly he was hurt.  Wovoka  shook his clothes, the pellets fell to the ground. He had only red spots where the blast had hit him.


He said that he had gone to heaven and saw all the people who had  died here on this earth,  and what a nice place it was,  the dancing and other sports,  etc.  He stared that the Creator had visited him many times since and told him what he should do.  He must tell the Indians no more quarreling,  live in peace with the  whites,  work  and  not lie or  steal,  that  they must put away  all  the  old practices of war. If they faithfully obeyed his instructions, they would at last be reunited  with their friends and families in this other world where there would be  no more death or sickness or old age.  He was then given the dance  called the ghost dance which he was commanded to bring back to his people. By performing  the circle dance at intervals for five consecutive days each time,  they would secure this happiness to themselves and hasten this event. He then began
to preach as he was directed, convincing the people by exercising the wonderful powers that had been given him.  Wovoka is accorded special attention  among Indian  and non-Indians alike because of the status he held as an  international as  well as local religious  prophet.  The moral code Wovoka transmitted to  his people  reached  far  beyond  the  confines  of  Mason  and  Smith  Valleys.

Representatives from more than 30 tribes came to visit him in Mason Valley in order to hear his words and see him demonstrate his powers.  We know of this movement as the 1890 Ghost Dance Religion. This religion spread throughout a large part of the United States and even into Canada.  Misinterpretations  of the teaching and dance appear to have been one of the factors in the Wounded Knee Massacre.  Wovoka is remembered as a curious mixture of the  ordinary and  extraordinary  among the Numu of the Yerington Paiute Tribe.  He is remembered by his people as a truly great man:  "To  him, the old people  were his  grandparents,  those his age were his brothers and sisters,  and the  young were  his  grandchildren....." This is what he  believed.  Jack  Wilson  died  on September 20, 1932.  The  cause of death was listed as  nephritis with  his  age approximated to be seventy-four. But his spirit lives on.


The  so-called  Ghost Dance Religion of  1890  was the result of many  factors. First  and  foremost  there was the charismatic  Jack Wilson.  Charged with a message from above. Wovoka preached the brotherhood of man and pacifisms. He emphasized such Protestant religious values as hard work and right  living. He instructed the Numu that he had returned to earth with a dance, the Numu Circle Dance, and that he had power over the elements (weather). Other Native Americans from all over the nation flocked to Wovoka's home in Smith Valley, to the dance grounds in  Smith  and  Mason  Valleys and  to the  Walker  River Reservation where the Ghost Dance was held. The message of Wovoka offered hope to those Native Americans disillusioned by the changes brought about by the  coming  of  the  White man.  The relationship between the  Ghost  Dance Religion  and the  infamous Wounded  Knee  Massacre of the Sioux in  South Dakota is one so complex and tragic that it is beyond the scope of this history. Let it suffice to be said that Wovoka, according to Mooney, insisted to his end that his religion was a peaceful one.


On December 19, 1975, the Wovoka monument was placed at the Yerington Indian Colony. The following inscription appears on the marker:

"This  historical  marker was  erected by  the  Yerington  Paiute
Tribe  in  honor of  Wovoka or Jack Wilson,  a spiritual  leader
whose influence was so great that many considered him  a great
prophet of God".

Wovoka was born in Smith Valley in 1856, the son of a medicine
man named Numa-Taibo or "White Indian". Later he moved to
Yerington where he lived the last 20 years of his life.

After  a  mystical  revelation,  he  was given power by our  real
Father  to  control  the  natural  elements.  There  were  several
instances when Wovoka demonstrated his power, one of which
occurred at the place called Circle in Smith Valley. Several men
pitching  hay  for  a  local rancher saw him  coming  and  began
yelling "There goes the rain-maker". Wovoka made the rain fall
only  on the spot where the men were haying.  It rained so  hard
that no one could travel through. He also caused it to rain during
droughts. Wovoka was further instructed by our Great Father to
stress  brotherhood among  all  Indian peoples,  and between the
Indian and the White Man. Representatives from more than  30
tribes  came to visit him in  Mason Valley in order,  to  hear  his
words and see him demonstrate his powers. We know of this as
The 1890 Ghost Dance Religion. This religion spread throughout
a large part of the United States and even into Canada.

Wovoka is remembered by his people as a truly great man:  "To
him, the old people were his grandparents, those his age were his
brothers and sisters, and the young were his grandchildren....."

Quote of the Day

"The Crows brought the Message, to the Children of the Sun.
For the return of the Buffalo and for a better day to come.
You can kill my body. You can damn my soul.
For not believing in your God and some world down below.

You don´t stand a chance
against my Prayers.
You don´t stand a chance,
against my Love."

They outlawed the Ghost Dance.
They outlawed the Ghost Dance.
But we shall live again. (We shall live again)
We shall live again.

My Sister above, she has Red Paint.
She died at Wounded Knee, like a latter day saint.
You got the big drum in the distance, Blackbird in the Sky.
That´s the sound that you hear, when the Buffalo cry. . ."

~~Robbie Robertson, Mohawk Nation "Ghost Dance"©1994

22 July 2005

Tom Tancredo: WARNING!

WARNING: Mouth operates faster than brain!


Tom Tancredo Eyes White House Run

Friday July 22, 2005 9:31 PM


Associated Press Writer

DENVER (AP) - Tom Tancredo has been called a one-horse pony of a politician, a man out of step with his party, a bigot. The Republican congressman vehemently opposes illegal immigration, and he created an uproar last week when he talked about nuking Muslim holy sites.

No matter, Tancredo is pressing on and even hinting at a longshot presidential bid in 2008.

Tancredco has already visited New Hampshire and Iowa this year, and says he found a welcome audience among voters who are fed up with the nation's immigration policies, including proposals by President Bush.

``Unless I misread the political tea leaves, there is a great deal of support for what I say,'' Tancredo said.

Tancredo raised eyebrows last week by telling a radio talk show host that ``you could take out'' Islamic holy sites should terrorists ever launch a nuclear attack against the United States.

``You're talking about bombing Mecca,'' asked the host.

``Yeah,'' Tancredo responded, saying he was ``just throwing out some ideas.'' He later said his comments were taken out of context and refused to apologize.

Few consider Tancredo a serious challenger for the GOP presidential nomination, but his stance resonates with some in a post-Sept. 11 era when volunteer groups like the Minutemen have been patrolling the border for illegal immigrants.

Such critics contend illegal immigrants are a security threat, take jobs from Americans, overburden the health care system and raise the crime rate.

Tancredo would like the United States to patrol its borders with the military. He said the U.S. also needs a guest worker program that requires employers to prove a need for short-term labor, without amnesty for illegal immigrants.

Esteban Flores, executive director of the Latino Research and Policy Center in Denver, calls Tancredo a bigot who is trying to use racial division to further his career. He compared Tancredo to George Wallace, the outspoken opponent of desegregation.

``He's preying on peoples' fears, which is the worst way to build public trust,'' Flores said.

Tancredo doesn't see it that way.

The 59-year-old grandson of an Italian immigrant is a former public school teacher. He said he began his campaign after becoming disgusted with bilingual education requirements that he says turned out students illiterate in two languages.

Tancredo said he received a warm reception when he traveled to New Hampshire to give an award to a police chief who arrests undocumented immigrants on charges of trespassing. It warmed him up for Iowa, the key caucus state he visited this month.

Unlike 2002, when the GOP tried to distance itself from Tancredo amid concern he could cost them Hispanic votes, the national party is backing the four-term congressman's re-election bid in the heavily Republican suburbs of southern Denver. So far, there is no Democratic challenger for the 2006 race.

The GOP is eager to point out it has a plank on immigration reform, though Bush and Tancredo disagree on the details.

Bush promoted a guest-worker program that would allow migrants to work in the United States for a limited time as long as they have a job lined up.

``The president sees immigration reform as a necessary component to protect our borders from traffickers and smugglers, and we have to deal with it in a humane way,'' said Aaron McLear, spokesman for the Republican National Committee.

On the Democratic side, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton this month called for changes that would allow undocumented immigrant students to receive college aid. During a recent visit to Denver, Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean called Tancredo's views ``despicable.''

Experts say Tancredo has no chance at the White House, but like Ross Perot's campaign on a balanced budget in 1992, he has found an issue that could force other Republicans to treat immigration as a major issue.

``If he gets lots of attention, if he moves in the polls, some candidate has to pick it up,'' said Floyd Ciruli, an independent Denver pollster.

Tancredo is quick to dismiss his critics, saying he has a duty to make sure immigration laws are enforced.

``I also know that if given the slightest opportunity, most of the candidates out there right now will not address it forthrightly. They will say things like, `I'm against illegal immigration, next question.' We're going to have to do a lot better than that.''

20 July 2005

Amy Gillett (1976 - 2005)

Once again, we are cruelly reminded of just how truely dangerous our sport can be.

Godspell Amy...


Cycling Ace Killed While Training

Top Australian cyclist Amy Gillett was killed and five other national team members were hurt when they were hit by a car while training in Germany.

Louise Yaxley and Alexis Rhodes are in intensive care with multiple injuries while Katie Brown, Lorian Graham and Kate Nichols are in a stable condition.

Gillett, 29, took up competitive cycling in 2000, having rowed for Australia at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

She later married world champion rower and Australian coach Simon Gillett.

The riders, members of the Australian Institute of Sports (AIS) women's road cycling squad based in Italy, were out preparing for the Tour of Thuringen when the incident occurred.

German police said the car's driver, an 18-year-old learner, lost control of her vehicle between the towns of Zeulenroda and Auma.

"She then ended up on the oncoming lane and that's where the collision with the six cyclists happened," said prosecutor Ralf Mohrmann.

Police have not been able to question the driver, who was also seriously injured, but authorities have not ruled out manslaughter charges caused by negligent driving.

Team coach Warren McDonald told the Sydney Morning Herald: "The woman driver just suddenly veered across the road and hit a bunch of girls."

The injured were evacuated by helicopter to five hospitals around Leipzig following the incident on Monday.

Cycling Australia chief executive Graham Fredericks said Yaxley and Rhodes were in "very serious" condition in hospital.

Yaxley, 20, suffered "major trauma" that required surgery while Rhodes, 23, had a thoracic fracture and serious concussion.

"Obviously that will take a fair bit of monitoring. Hopefully she will pull through but at the moment she is still in intensive care," said Fredericks.

He added that Brown, 22, had suffered a badly fractured leg, Nichols, 20, had sustained soft tissue damage and torn tendons in her hand while Graham, 27, had multiple fractures of her knees, fingers and both collarbones.

It is not known if any of the riders will be able to compete at the top level again.

Australia's sports minister, Rod Kemp, said: "It's a very sad day for Australian sport and it's a tragedy for the individuals involved and their families.

"It's probably the worst accident in sport that we've had for a very long time and our hearts go out to these young cyclists, particularly of course to the family of Amy Gillett."

Fredericks added: "Our focus now is on the well-being of those athletes ... to monitor them through their recovery process until they are well enough to travel back to Australia."

One of Australia's best road racers, Gillett was considered a medal favourite for next year's Commonwealth Games in Melbourne.

"Amy was a unique athlete who represented at the elite level in two sports," Australia Olympic Committee president John Coates said in a statement.

Competing under her maiden name, Amy Safe, she was a member of the Australian women's eight rowing team that placed fifth at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

She switched to cycling in 2000 and was a member of the Australian World Cup cycling teams in 2002 and 2003.

Organisers of the Tour of Thuringia have cancelled Tuesday's opening time trial and arranged a memorial service in its place.

It is expected to be attended by all the competitors.

The race will start Wednesday instead, with what would have been stage two, and run through the east German state of Thuringia before finishing on Sunday.

Story from BBC SPORT:

Published: 2005/07/19 14:53:03 GMT


Sosenka: 49.7km!



Sosenka Smashes Boardman Record

Czech rider Ondrej Sosenka broke Chris Boardman's world one-hour cycling record in Russia on Tuesday.

The 29-year-old set a distance of 49,700m, beating Briton Boardman's previous record of 49,441m, set in Manchester in 2000.

The 29-year-old Acqua e Sapone rider is a time-trial specialist, and has won the Uniqa Classic prologue and Stage four in the Tour of Belgium this year.

Boardman's record improved on Eddy Merckx's 1972 mark by just 0.01km.

That record marked a new beginning for the discipline, with world cycling (UCI) rules requiring riders to revert back to the same kind of technology that Merckx used decades earlier.

Known as the Athlete's Hour Record, it replaced the Absolute Hour Record standard which permitted the use of aerodynamic bicycles, positions and clothing.

Sosenka was under Boardman's record from the outset at the Krylatskoye Olympic indoor track.

He recorded a time of 1:15.01 (to 1:17.891) for the opening kilometre and then went over three seconds up through the 5km point.

By 25km he had extended his advantage to just under seven seconds which continued to grow to 18 seconds by 40km.

Story from BBC SPORT:

Published: 2005/07/19 14:59:08 GMT


18 July 2005

Rove IS the Leak...

O.K. Karl, how long can you tread water?
I say we throw his happy ass in Camp X-Ray at Gitmo with all of the other so-called "threats to national security"...


Bush Aide 'Is Source of CIA Leak'

A US journalist says presidential aide Karl Rove was the first to tell him that the wife of a prominent administration critic was a CIA agent.

Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper said Mr Rove did not disclose Valerie Plame's name, but said the wife of a government critic worked for the CIA.

Mr Rove has denied being behind the leaking of her identity to the media.

A federal prosecutor is investigating whether any officials broke the law by revealing the name of a covert agent.

Weapons claim

Newspaper columnist Robert Novak first publicly revealed that Ms Plame was a covert CIA agent in July 2003, citing two administration officials.

That was shortly after her husband, Joseph Wilson, wrote an opinion piece for the New York Times in which he accused President George W Bush's administration of twisting intelligence on Iraq.

Mr Wilson says he travelled to Niger to investigate a claim that Iraq had tried to buy nuclear material there, but found no evidence to prove it.

President Bush used the Niger claim as part of the justification for the 2003 invasion.

Novak wrote that an official had told him the trip was inspired by Ms Plame.

Mr Wilson alleges that his wife's name was deliberately leaked in a bid to undermine him.

Cheney aide

Writing in the current issue of Time after testifying in court last week, Cooper said: "So did Rove leak Plame's name to me, or tell me she was covert? No.

"Was it through my conversation with Rove that I learned for the first time that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA and may have been responsible for sending him? Yes. Did Rove say that she worked at the 'agency' on 'WMD'? Yes."

This week, Newsweek magazine quoted Mr Rove's lawyer as saying his client did discuss Ms Plame with Cooper in an e-mail, but did not mention her name.

Cooper also wrote in Time that he discussed Mr Wilson and his wife with Lewis Libby, a senior aide to Vice-President Dick Cheney.

The journalist said he asked Mr Libby whether he had heard anything about Mr Wilson's wife sending her husband to Niger, and Mr Libby replied: "Yeah, I've heard that too."

Feb 2002 : Joseph Wilson looks into reports that Iraq tried to buy uranium in Niger
6 July 2003 : Mr Wilson goes public about investigation
14 July 2003 : Columnist Robert Novak writes the trip was inspired by Ms Plame - Matthew Cooper reports that he had similar information
30 September : Justice department launches probe
24 June 2004 : President Bush testifies in case
15 July : Cooper and Judith Miller ordered to testify about sources
10 August : Miller and Cooper sentenced for contempt of court
28 June 2005 : Supreme Court refuses to hear appeal
6 July : Miller jailed after appeals fail, Cooper agrees to testify

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/17 19:00:39 GMT


Supporting Bu$h's War Put Britain at Risk...



Iraq War Support 'Put UK at Risk'
Iraq war support 'put UK at risk'
Supporting the US-led invasion of Iraq put the UK more at risk from terrorist attack, a report has said.

The Chatham House and Economic and Social Research Council report also said the invasion had boosted al-Qaeda.

UK involvement in operations against Osama Bin Laden's network had also raised the attack risk, it added.

Defence Secretary John Reid rejected the report, saying "the terrorists will kill anyone who stands in the way of their own perverse ideology".

The report, which comes less than two weeks after the London Tube and bus bombings, said the UK's anti-terrorist efforts were focused on Northern Ireland.

"This is a timely and controversial briefing paper," BBC diplomatic correspondent Bridget Kendall said.

"It suggests Britain, as America's closest ally, is at particular risk from terrorism," she said.

The report said the Iraq invasion, in which the UK had been "pillion" passenger, had damaged the counter-tourism campaign.

It had boosted support, training and fund-raising for al-Qaeda.

Prime Minister Tony Blair had consistently insisted linking the London attacks to British involvement in Iraq or Afghanistan was wrong.

"There is no doubt that the situation over Iraq has imposed particular difficulties for the UK, and for the wider coalition against terrorism," the report said.

It also stated Britain's "international intelligence, police and judicial co-operation" in operations against al-Qaeda had put it at risk.

1990s threat

But Mr Reid told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I do not accept, when the report says we have made ourselves more of a target because of involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq and our efforts to tackle al-Qaeda, that there is another alternative which is easier and better.

"And the idea that somehow by running away from the school bully, then the bully will not come after you is a thesis that is known to be completely untrue by every kid in the playground and it is also refuted by every piece of historical evidence that we have.

"Terrorism goes way back to the late 1980s and the early 1990s."

But the report said Islamic terrorists had only become recognised as a threat in the late 1990s.

Before then, groups had been able to operate in London with "relative impunity".

"In an open society, such as the UK, it is notoriously difficult to prevent no-warning co-ordinated suicide attacks, the characteristic modus operandi of al Qaeda ," the report states.

"The attacks on the transport system in London on July 7 represent precisely the nature of the threat from international terrorism that the UK authorities have been concerned about since 9/11."

It warned terrorists could try to get hold of nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.

"Their track record shows that they would have no compunction about using this type of weapon to cause large numbers of civilian deaths," the report added.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/18 08:56:23 GMT


17 July 2005

Quote of the Day

"Those who desire to give up Freedom in order to gain security, will not have, nor do they deserve, either one..."

~~Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), Statesman, Scientist, Philosopher, Printer, Writer and Inventor.

Hawaiian Sovereignty...

It's been long since about time for this...


Bill Giving Native Hawaiians Sovereignty Is Too Much
for Some, Too Little for Others


HONOLULU, July 15 - Hawaii is once again awash with
mainlanders, as summer vacationers delight in its
beaches and make themselves feel at home even on
distant tropical islands. Breakfast at Starbucks,
lunch at Subway, dinner at Red Lobster and a restful
night at the Marriott or Hilton.

But most visitors soon discover something profoundly
different about the 50th state that the requisite
luaus and hula dances only hint at. The 250,000
indigenous people of Polynesian ancestry who are among
Hawaii's 1.2 million residents make the state like no
other, sustaining a native Hawaiian cultural and
linguistic imprint that preceded the arrival of Capt.
James Cook by a millennium.

Now, 112 years after United States troops helped
overthrow the independent Kingdom of Hawaii and 12
years after Congress apologized for it, that Hawaiian
distinctiveness appears close to being formally
recognized by the United States government. A bill
that for the first time would extend sovereignty to
the native Hawaiian people is poised for a vote - and
likely approval - in the United States Senate despite
opposition from many Republicans who denounce the
measure as unworkable and as promoting racial

The bill, the Native Hawaiian Government
Reorganization Act, is considered the most significant
development for native Hawaiians since statehood in
1959. The measure would give them equivalent legal
standing to American Indians and native Alaskans and
lead to the creation of a governing body that would
make decisions on behalf of the estimated 400,000
native Hawaiians in the United States.

The governing body would also have the power to
negotiate with federal and state authorities over the
disposition of vast amounts of land and resources
taken by the United States when the islands were
annexed in 1898, including about 300 square miles of
land long ago set aside for use as native homelands
and an additional 2,500 square miles scattered
throughout the islands being held in trusts.

Haunani Apoliona, a musician who is chairwoman of the
Office of Hawaiian Affairs, a state agency that would
be superseded by the new governing body, said the bill
was a long overdue acknowledgment that Hawaiian
history did not begin with the arrival of Cook and the
British Navy in 1778.

"We were here before Columbus," Ms. Apoliona said. "We
were in Hawaii before the Pilgrims."

The House of Representatives has passed earlier
versions of the bill and would take up the current one
if the Senate passes it, perhaps as early as next

The Bush administration has remained largely neutral
on the measure, though the Justice Department on
Wednesday cast some doubt on the constitutionality of
the proposed law, namely whether Congress has the
authority to treat native Hawaiians as it does Indian
tribes. Assistant Attorney General William E.
Moschella said in a letter to Congress that the
proposed law also must be amended to include
protections for United States military operations in
Hawaii and stronger language precluding casino

The bill's supporters in Hawaii say that they do not
intend to have casinos and that the Justice
Department's other concerns can be addressed.

But they acknowledge there are basic questions that
will take years of negotiations to answer, like how
native Hawaiians would go about governing themselves,
whether native Hawaiians in and outside the state
would live under different laws from other citizens,
and who would qualify as a native, given the large
degree of assimilation through marriage and the many
Hawaiians living on the mainland.

As for the measure's constitutionality, most everyone
believes that will ultimately be determined by the
United States Supreme Court.

The measure, which took more than five years to reach
the Senate floor, arises from conflicting
crosscurrents in Hawaiian society, as native Hawaiians
grow impatient for the United States to right the
wrongs of more than a century ago, while many
nonnative residents and interest groups seek to scale
back entitlement programs already available to native

Backed by Hawaii's two senators, Daniel K. Akaka and
Daniel K. Inouye, both Democrats, the legislation grew
in part out of a desire to inoculate the entitlement
programs, which cover things like education and
housing, from race-based legal challenges. One such
challenge was upheld by the United States Supreme
Court in 2000, when the court ruled that
native-Hawaiian-only voting in statewide elections for
the board Ms. Apoliona leads at the Office of Hawaiian
Affairs violated the 15th Amendment.

The bill is opposed by conservatives on the islands
and in the Senate who see it as a step back. They say
it would create a race-based government, provide a new
vehicle for Hawaiian secessionist groups and spawn
endless litigation by people seeking redress against
the federal government.

In a report by the Senate Republican Policy Committee,
which provides analysis on behalf of Republican Party
positions, Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona said that the
bill amounted to a "rejection of the American melting
pot ideal." The report said that the legislation ran
counter to a "broad consensus in Congress and in the
nation" at the time of Hawaiian statehood that the
native Hawaiian people would not be treated

In Hawaii, the bill is being criticized by some as not
radical enough.

Kekuni Blaisdell, a retired professor of medicine who
coordinates a network of indigenous Hawaiian groups
that favor independence, said native Hawaiians like
Ms. Apoliona were misguided in their acceptance of
"continued foreign domination" by the American

Every Thursday night, in his home in the well-to-do
hills above downtown Honolulu, Mr. Blaisdell and a
dozen or so other activists meet to discuss ways to
promote independence for Kanaka Maoli, the Hawaiian
term for the islands' indigenous people and the only
descriptor Mr. Blaisdell, who is 80, accepts. Another
group of activists, led by Dennis Kanahele, live on a
compound of leased state land elsewhere on Oahu where
they fly the Hawaiian flag upside down as a symbol of

"The bill keeps us under the heel of the United States
and assures our subservient status as Native
Americans, which we are not," said Mr. Blaisdell, who
keeps a photograph on the wall of his grandmother, an
orphan who was cared for by the royal family. "We were
illegally invaded and occupied by the United States,
and we were and still are a separate people and

Opponents in the Senate are drafting amendments that
would undo some of the bill's central provisions and
require a referendum in Hawaii, which could put the
proposal at the mercy of the roughly 80 percent of
Hawaiians who are not native as well as independence
groups like Mr. Blaisdell's.

A survey conducted on behalf of the State Office of
Hawaiian Affairs showed strong public support for the
bill, while a poll released by the Grassroot Institute
of Hawaii, a nonprofit group critical of the bill,
showed that two out of three residents were against

Hawaii's governor, Linda Lingle, who has staked much
of her political reputation on passage of the
legislation, said in an interview that she had spoken
with six Republican senators who were committed to
join the Senate's 44 Democrats and one independent in
voting for the bill.

Ms. Lingle's support may very well make the
difference. As the state's first Republican governor
since 1962, she has a good relationship with the Bush
administration, which is eager to see her succeed.

The Justice Department's letter, sent Wednesday to the
Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, identified four
"serious policy concerns" raised by the bill, but said
the administration was willing to work with Congress
to address them.

Aside from the matters of gambling and military
operations, the letter also called for limiting
potential claims against the federal government and
clarifying jurisdiction over criminal matters on
native Hawaiian lands.

Ms. Lingle, who is not a native Hawaiian, said the
issues could be dealt with without altering the
essence of the bill.

She rejected criticism that the bill was about race,
saying it was an effort to recognize a "distinct
people" in the same way Congress has recognized
American Indians and native Alaskans.

"The only possible issue of discrimination is if this
bill does not pass," the governor said. "It would
continue the discrimination against native Hawaiians
by treating them differently. They would be the only
one of the indigenous people not recognized in this

16 July 2005

"Anpetu Luta Otpip"

Lincoln Journal Star Online: "For the children of Crazy Horse and Black Elk, it's an easy two-mile trip to the beer stores on the Nebraska border. But along this road people die, families crumble and young people -- to some, the Seventh Generation, the hope of the Lakota -- are losing their way..."

Black Kettle

Black Kettle (??-1868) Cheyenne Nation

Few biographical details are known about the Southern Cheyenne chief Black Kettle, but his repeated efforts to secure a peace with honor for his people, despite broken promises and attacks on his own life, speak of him as a great leader with an almost unique vision of the possiblity for coexistence between white society and the culture of the plains.

Black Kettle lived on the vast territory in western Kansas and eastern Colorado that had been guaranteed to the Cheyenne under the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1851. Within less than a decade, however, the 1859 Pikes Peak gold rush sparked an enormous population boom in Colorado, and this led to extensive white encroachments on Cheyenne land. Even the U.S. Indian Commissioner admitted that "We have substantially taken possession of the country and deprived the Indians of their accustomed means of support."

Rather than evict white settlers, the government sought to resolve the situation by demanding that the Southern Cheyenne sign a new treaty ceding all their lands save the small Sand Creek reservation in southeastern Colorado. Black Kettle, fearing that overwhelming U.S. military power might result in an even less favorable settlement, agreed to the treaty in 1861 and did what he could to see that the Cheyenne obeyed its provisions.

As it turned out, however, the Sand Creek reservation could not sustain the Indians forced to live there. All but unfit for agriculture, the barren tract of land was little more than a breeding ground for epidemic diseases which soon swept through the Cheyenne encampments. By 1862 the nearest herd of buffalo was over two hundred miles away. Many Cheyennes, especially young men, began to leave the reservation to prey upon the livestock and goods of nearby settlers and passing wagon trains. One such raid in the spring of 1864 so angered white Coloradans that they dispatched their militia, which opened fire on the first band of Cheyenne they happened to meet. None of the Indians in this band had participated in the raid, however, and their leader was actually approaching the militia for a parlay when the shooting began.

This incident touched off an uncoordinated Indian uprising across the Great Plains, as Indian peoples from the Comanche in the South to the Lakota in the North took advantage of the army's involvement in the Civil War by striking back at those who had encroached upon their lands. Black Kettle, however, understood white military supremacy too well to support the cause of war. He spoke with the local military commander at Fort Weld in Colorado and believed he had secured a promise of safety in exchange for leading his band back to the Sand Creek reservation.

But Colonel John Chivington, leader of the Third Colorado Volunteers, had no intention of honoring such a promise. His troops had been unsuccessful in finding a Cheyenne band to fight, so when he learned that Black Kettle had returned to Sand Creek, he attacked the unsuspecting encampment at dawn on November 29, 1864. Some two hundred Cheyenne died in the ensuing massacre, many of them women and children, and after the slaughter, Chivington's men sexually mutilated and scalped many of the dead, later exhibiting their trophies to cheering crowds in Denver.

Black Kettle miraculously escaped harm at the Sand Creek Massacre, even when he returned to rescue his seriously injured wife. And perhaps more miraculously, he continued to counsel peace when the Cheyenne attempted to strike back with isolated raids on wagon trains and nearby ranches. By October 1865, he and other Indian leaders had arranged an uneasy truce on the plains, signing a new treaty that exchanged the Sand Creek reservation for reservations in southwestern Kansas but deprived the Cheyenne of access to most of their coveted Kansas hunting grounds.

Only a part of the Southern Cheyenne nation followed Black Kettle and the others to these new reservations. Some instead headed north to join the Northern Cheyenne in Lakota territory. Many simply ignored the treaty and continued to range over their ancestral lands. This latter group, consisting mainly of young warriors allied with a Cheyenne war chief named Roman Nose, angered the government by their refusal to obey a treaty they had not signed, and General William Tecumseh Sherman launched a campaign to force them onto their assigned lands. Roman Nose and his followers struck back furiously, and the resulting standoff halted all traffic across western Kansas for a time.

At this point, government negotiators sought to move the Cheyenne once again, this time onto two smaller reservations in Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma) where they would receive annual provisions of food and supplies. Black Kettle was again among the chiefs who signed this treaty, the Medicine Lodge Treaty of 1867, but after his people had settled on their new reservation, they did not receive the provisions they had been promised, and by year's end, more and more of them were driven to join Roman Nose and his band.

In August 1868, Roman Nose led a series of raids on Kansas farms that provoked another full-scale military response. Under General Philip Sheridan, three columns of troops converged to launch a winter campaign against Cheyenne encampments, with the Seventh Cavalry commanded by George Armstrong Custer selected to take the lead. Setting out in a snowstorm, Custer followed the tracks of a small raiding party to a Cheyenne village on the Washita River, where he ordered an attack at dawn.

It was Black Kettle's village, well within the boundaries of the Cheyenne reservation and with a white flag flying above the chief's own tipi. Nonetheless, on November 27, 1868, nearly four years to the day after Sand Creek, Custer's troops charged, and this time Black Kettle could not escape: "Both the chief and his wife fell at the river bank riddled with bullets," one witness reported, "the soldiers rode right over Black Kettle and his wife and their horse as they lay dead on the ground, and their bodies were all splashed with mud by the charging soldiers." Custer later reported that an Osage guide took Black Kettle's scalp.

On the Washita, the Cheyenne's hopes of sustaining themselves as an independent people died as well; by 1869, they had been driven from the plains and confined to reservations.

Attention Native American Filmakers

From Native American Times:

 American Indian Filmakers Heading to the Spotlight
Premiere for series of productions, film festival seeking entries

Sam Lewin 7/14/2005

This is a good time to be a fan of films made by Native Americans.

In New Mexico, the Institute of American Arts Summer Film & Television Workshop has completed and the features are ready to be seen by the public. A free screening is taking place at the institute’s LTC Auditorium on July 22. The event features six short films and one documentary.

IAIA’s John Villani says students completing the course include Navajo, Santa Ana, Yakima, Choctaw, Seneca, Cherokee Nation, Lakota, Ojibwe, Chickasaw, Creek Nation, Comanche and Kiowa. Their age ranges from mid-20’s to mid-40’s. Those involved with the project worked with Hollywood honchos from ABC Entertainment Television, NBC Universal and the Walt Disney Studios in what is described as a state-of-the-art production facility.

Looking ahead to the fall, the Eastern Cherokee, Southern Iroquois & United Tribes of South Carolina are seeking entries to the film festival they hold every year in honor of National Native American Indian Heritage Month.

"We are a non-profit organization that feels this is important. We have been successful getting new independent Native American and Indigenous Filmmakers and movies to new audiences," said film festival founder and coordinator Dr. Will Moreau Goins.

Organizers say they are especially interested in features hailing from diverse locales.

“This festival helps us make that connection to the rest of the Native American Indian world that is not in South Carolina. Bringing us new and contemporary images and current issues facing our Native brothers and sisters and also entertaining us,” said Goins. “We want to show contemporary, authentic, current and quality work in film that features Native American Indian and indigenous people and culture that been our goal since this film festival started and that goal hasn't changed. We welcome filmmakers from throughout the diverse Native and indigenous diasporas, reaching out specifically to our Latino/Hispanic native indigenous people, culture and filmmakers from the Indians in Brazil, South America, Central America or those of the Native Hawaiians. These all fit in our festival and we welcome filmmakers to submit that share stories from these Native experiences.”

The major categories for this festival include: Documentary Feature, Documentary Short, Commercial Feature, Short Subject, Music Video, Animated Short Subject, Student Film, Public Service, and Industrial. Formats excepted include: 35 mm, VHS, DVD, Digital, 16mm, and Beta SP. The deadline for submission is September 20, 2005.

For an application or more information contact:

ECSIUT, Film Festival of Southeastern USA
P.O. Box 7062,
Columbia South Carolina, 29202
(803) 699-0446,
Attn: Dr. Will Moreau Goins, Film Festival Coordinator/ Presenter
NTN Article#: 6720

Pentagon Will Deploy New Iraq Battleplan

A friend sent me this today:

The Pentagon announced today the formation of a new 500-man elite
fighting unit called the US Redneck Special Forces (USRSF).

These Kentucky, North Carolina, West Virginia, Mississippi, Missouri,
Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia, Texas and Tennessee boys will be dropped into Iraq. They will have been given only the following facts about the Terrorists:

1. The season opened today.
2. There is no limit.
3. They taste just like chicken.
4. They don't like beer, pick-ups, country music or Jesus.
5. They are directly responsible for the death of Dale Earnhardt.

This mess in Iraq should be over IN A WEEK.

12 July 2005

BUSTED: Karl Rove

Somebody tell Curious George it's time to flush the toilet, ole Karl is starting to stink up the place...


B Democrats Press Rove on CIA Leak

US Democrats have urged the White House to give a full account of senior aide Karl Rove's alleged role in disclosing the name of an undercover CIA officer.

The calls came after revelations that Mr Rove contacted journalist Matthew Cooper about the agent days before her identity was revealed in the press.

The White House has refused to comment on the affair, citing an ongoing criminal investigation.

Mr Rove has previously denied being behind the disclosure.

Prosecutors are investigating how the identity of the agent, Valerie Plame, was revealed in the media in 2003.

Deliberate exposure of a covert agent is a criminal offence in the US.

The affair has led to a tense stand-off between the government and the media over the right of journalists to keep contacts confidential.

Credibility questioned

Newsweek magazine quoted Mr Rove's lawyer, Robert Luskin, as saying he discussed Ms Plame with Cooper in an e-mail without mentioning her name or being aware that she was working covertly.

Correspondents say that, while it is up to prosecutors to find out whether a crime has been committed, the government's credibility is now at stake because of previous denials by Mr Rove.

Democrats said the White House should reveal all the facts of the case.

"The lessons of history for [US President] George Bush and Karl Rove is that the best way to help themselves is to bring out all the facts, on their own, quickly," said New York Senator Charles Schumer.

Senate Minority leader Harry Reid said he hoped President Bush would follow through on a pledge to sack anyone involved in leaking the agent's name.

Niger claim

But White House spokesman Scott McClellan would not say whether the pledge still stood.

Facing hostile questioning at a news conference, he said: "No-one wants to get to the bottom of this more than the president of the United States.

"And I think the way to be most helpful is to not get into commenting on it while it is an ongoing investigation."

Cooper, who writes for Time magazine, and fellow journalist Judith Miller of the New York Times, had both been ordered to testify about their sources in the leak case.

Cooper later agreed to testify after Mr Rove apparently said he could do so.

But Miller maintained her refusal - arguing that it was her duty as a journalist to protect her sources - and was jailed.

Ms Plame's husband, former US ambassador Joseph Wilson, has alleged that his wife's identity was made public in an attempt to discredit him after he challenged the government's arguments for going to war in Iraq.

Mr Wilson says he travelled to Niger to investigate a claim that Iraq had tried to buy nuclear material there but found no evidence to prove it.

Mr Luskin said Mr Rove's e-mail to Cooper said that Ms Plame had authorised the trip.

Its purpose was to discourage Time magazine from publishing false allegations that Vice-President Dick Cheney was behind the trip, not to deliberately expose Ms Plame, he added.

The claim was used by President Bush as one of the reasons for invading Iraq.

Feb 2002 : Joseph Wilson looks into reports that Iraq tried to buy uranium in Niger
6 July 2003 : Mr Wilson goes public about investigation
14 July 2003 : Columnist Robert Novak writes the trip was inspired by Ms Plame - Matthew Cooper reports that he had similar information
30 September : Justice department launches probe
24 June 2004 : President Bush testifies in case
15 July : Cooper and Judith Miller ordered to testify about sources
10 August : Miller and Cooper sentenced for contempt of court
28 June 2005 : Supreme Court refuses to hear appeal
6 July : Miller jailed after appeals fail, Cooper agrees to testify

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/12 11:53:40 GMT


The Battle of Courchevel...

AWESOME! This is a day that will be long held in the moemories of the sport. Lance and Team Discovery attacked and there was very little anyone could do about it. He is well and truely going out "on top!"


Armstrong Takes Control of Tour
Lance Armstrong reclaimed the Tour de France leader's yellow jersey after stage 10 from Grenoble to Courchevel.

The first of the Tour's mountain stages was won by Alejandro Valverde, who just pipped Armstong after a gruelling category one climb to the finish.

After looking vulnerable in the first week, Armstrong's Discovery team were at their best in the Alps, setting a relentless pace on the final climb.

Armstrong left main rivals Jan Ullrich and Alexandre Vinokourov far behind.

The six-time Tour winner leads the overall standings by 38 seconds from Dane Michael Rasmussen with Ullrich now over four minutes adrift.

But Armstrong downplayed his advantage saying: "We're in a good position as compared to some of the main rivals - but there's still a lot of racing to go.

"We have another day in the Alps, a transition stage then two very tough days in the Pyrenees, then the final time trial."

Jens Voigt, who started the day in yellow, also dropped a long way down the standings.

Armstrong took over the lead in Tuesday's stage after the last of his team-mates dropped off the pace 10km from the finish.

By the end, just four riders were left to battle it out - Armstrong, Valverde, King of the Mountains leader Rasmussen and Francisco Mancebo.

Armstrong launched a decisive attack in the final kilometre with only Valverde able to respond and the Spaniard then moved through to cross the line first.

Armstrong, riding his last Tour, admitted he was surprised not to have won the stage.

"I was hoping for the stage win, but I think today we may have seen the future of cycling," he said. "Alejandro's strong, intelligent and he's fast. Very impressive."

Stage results (Top 10)
1. Alejandro Valverde (Sp) Illes Balears 4hrs 50mins 35secs
2. Lance Armstrong (US) Discovery same time
3. Michael Rasmussen (Den) Rabobank +9s
4. Francisco Mancebo (Sp) Illes Balears same time
5. Ivan Basso (It) Team CSC +1:02
6. Levi Leipheimer (US) Gerolsteiner +1:15
7. Eddy Mazzoleni (It) Lampre-Caffita +2:14
8. Cadel Evans (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto same time
9. Andreas Kloden (Ger) T-Mobile same time
10. Andrey Kashechkin (Kaz) Credit Agricole same time

Overall standings (Top 10)
1. Lance Armstrong (US) Discovery 37:11:04"
2. Michael Rasmussen (Den) Rabobank +38s
3. Ivan Basso (It) Team CSC +2:40
4. Christophe Moreau (Fr) Credit Agricole +2:42
5. Alejandro Valverde (Sp) Illes Balears +3:16
6. Levi Leipheimer (US) Gerolsteiner +3:58
7. Francisco Mancebo (Sp) Illes Balears +4:00
8. Jan Ullrich (Ger) T-Mobile +4:02
9. Andreas Kloden (Ger) T-Mobile +4:16
10. Floyd Landis (US) Phonak same time

Story from BBC SPORT:

Published: 2005/07/12 15:43:59 GMT


11 July 2005

Quote of the Day

"To initiate a war of aggression is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole..."

~~ the Judges in the Nuremberg Trial of the Nazi Leadership

Srebrenica: Never Forget...

Hopefully Srebrenica will become a World Heritage Site to remind us of our potential capacity for hate and destruction. For too many people forget those human failings...

Mitakuye Oyasin

Srebrenica to Remember Massacre
Tens of thousands of people are gathering to attend ceremonies marking the 10th anniversary of the massacre of Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica.

About 8,000 men and boys were killed by Serbian forces in 1995, in Europe's worst atrocity since World War II.

UK, French and Dutch ministers, and US officials will take part in a memorial at the Potocari cemetery, where many of the dead are buried.

The remains of 610 newly identified dead will be buried at the same time.

Security is tight after two unexploded bombs were found nearby last week. Over 1,500 policemen will be deployed to patrol the area.

Also attending Monday's ceremonies are former US Balkans envoy Richard Holbrooke and the president of the war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, Theodor Meron.

But the tribunal's chief prosecutor, Carla del Ponte, has promised to boycott the occasion in protest against the failure to arrest the men accused of the slaughter - former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic and his army commander Gen Radko Mladic.


Muslim prayers echoed through the valley as hundreds of relatives of those killed walked slowly and thoughtfully around the cemetery.

Piles of soil stand next to the 610 freshly-dug graves - the latest victims to be found and identified, who are to be buried at the ceremony.

Bosnian police are providing security for the event, which takes place in the Serb-controlled part of the country, but international peacekeepers and police officers are keeping watch from a distance.

A Serbian delegation led by President Boris Tadic will attend the memorial for the first time - a move condemned by Serbian hardliners.

In Serbia, many still believe the mass killings never took place. But a new video showing the execution of Muslim civilians sparked national soul-searching among Serbs last month.

Mr Tadic has announced he will "bow to the innocent victims".

Mr Karadzic and Gen Mladic have been indicted for genocide, but they are still at large.

Mr Tadic told the Bosnian Serb newspaper Nezavisne Novine that he hoped Gen Mladic would be arrested in the next few days.

Many of the widows attending the ceremony are still waiting to see justice done, says the BBC's Nick Hawton in Srebrenica.

"They killed my entire life and the only thing I want now is to see the guilty ones pay for it," Fatima Budic, whose 14-year-old son Velija was one of the victims, told AP news agency. Her husband and another son are among the missing.

So far 1,300 bodies recovered from mass graves have been laid to rest after being identified through DNA testing.

But more than 4,500 body bags full of human remains still need to be analysed.

On Sunday, the Bosnian government announced a new mass grave believed to contain more bodies of people killed in the massacre had been found.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/11 09:15:35 GMT


London: Business As Usual!

Prayers and Smoke to the good people of London during their difficult time of need...


Defiant Londoners Go Back to Work
London is getting back to business as usual after the chaos caused by Thursday's bomb blasts.

Many commuters have made their first trip to work since the attacks and London Underground said passenger numbers were at normal levels.

The first victim to be formally identified has been named as Susan Levy, 53, of Herts, who died in the Tube explosion near King's Cross.

Forty-nine people died and 700 people were injured at four blast sites.

Londoners were encouraged to return to their routines by the police and Mayor Ken Livingstone.

Andy Trotter, senior British Transport Police officer, said: "By not coming to work, by London not being open for business, they will win and they are not going to win."

Despite Tube closures around the affected lines and road closures around Tavistock Square, most buses and trains have almost resumed a normal service.

Trisha Webbe, a hospital administrator, has to pass Tavistock Square to get to work.

Returning on Monday, the 34-year-old said: "I have to go through an area where you can see the horrific aftermath.

"I feel nervous all the time. But you can't let it stop life going on. You've got to pay the bills."

Bomb footage

Police have praised the public response to their request for photos and film taken after the attacks.

Tony Blair is expected to reject demands for an inquiry into the London bombings in a statement to MPs.

He will underline his confidence in the intelligence services and reject Tory demands for a probe into the events.

Conservative leader Michael Howard has called for an inquiry into what happened, to see if any lessons could be learned.

But BBC political correspondent Carolyn Quinn said senior government sources thought an inquiry would be "seriously irresponsible" at a time when the hunt for bombers is at full stretch.

Home Secretary Charles Clarke is expected to propose further anti-terrorism measures at a meeting with his European counterparts this week.

These are set to include a proposal for telecommunication firms to make records of phone calls and e-mails available to the police.

'Not a suicide attack'

Scotland Yard has set up a special e-mail address, images@met.police.uk, to which the public can send their footage.

Police believe they could provide vital clues, as the search for bodies and forensic evidence continues.

They say 1,700 people have also contacted the anti-terrorist hotline since the bombings.

Police and security agencies say they are now almost certain that they are not dealing with a suicide bomb attack.

The BBC's David Bamford said investigators were reported to be concentrating on activities at King's Cross, a station all the three trains targeted had passed through.

"Investigators reportedly think the bombers assembled at Kings Cross before going off in separate directions with their bombs," he said.

King's Cross

Meanwhile, security officials have searched the flat of a British man living in Poland, in relation to the attacks.

The man, who lives in the eastern city of Lublin, is said to be of Pakistani origin.

Police say they acted on a tip-off from a member of the public. No arrest has been made.

The process of formally identifying victims has begun, with the first inquest to open on Monday.

Some relatives have already been informed that their loved ones were killed in the bombings.

On Sunday the family of missing Scottish woman Helen Jones, originally from Annan who had been living in Holloway, said they believed she had died in the attack.

Emergency teams have removed all the bodies from the train which was blown up between King's Cross and Russell Square, but are continuing to search the carriages to make sure there are no more.

London Mayor Ken Livingstone has arranged for a book of condolence to be opened at City Hall at 1100 BST.

Anti-terrorist hotline: 0800 789 321
Missing relatives: 0870 156 6344

On Sunday, three people were arrested at Heathrow Airport under anti-terror laws, but no link to the attacks was made. They were later released without charge.

Other developments:

* London hospitals are still treating 62 people who were injured in Thursday's bombings.
* A two-minute silence will be held at noon on Thursday to remember the victims
* A national memorial to the victims could be built, Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell has said
* A remembrance site, the London Memorial Garden, in Victoria Embankment Gardens, opens on Monday.
* More than 100 London schools are to reopen on Monday
* Passengers on public transport in London have been warned it is "intolerable" to leave unattended packages or parcels
* A reception centre has been opened at the Queen Mother Sports Centre in Victoria, to help the families of people not seen since the explosions

Blasts occurred:
Between Aldgate and Liverpool Street tube stations
Between King's Cross and Russell Square tube stations
At Edgware Road tube station
On bus at Tavistock Square

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2005/07/11 07:28:27 GMT


New York City's "Quiet Witness"

Most interesting...


Hart Island
by Clay Risen

New York City is a collection of islands, and one, Hart Island, is completely inaccessible, possibly because it’s reserved for the dead. Clay Risen reports on the home of potter’s field and an abandoned missile base.

The best way to get a glimpse of Hart Island – about the only way, in fact – is to travel to City Island, a long, thin spit of land just off the Bronx shore, at the western edge of Long Island Sound. Stand on the northeastern shore, and you can’t miss it: Hart Island is long and thin, like its neighbor, only about a third as large. But while City Island is heavily populated, Hart Island is off limits. And though City Island is best known for its late Victorian-era houses, Hart Island is best known for the giant cross-emblazoned memorial planted near its northern end.

Most people never think about it, but New York is an archipelago; outside of the Bronx, the city’s 8 million people live on a collection of 50 islands. There are the big islands – Manhattan, Long, and Staten – as well as a number of medium-sized ones – Ward, City, Governor’s, Roosevelt. There are small islands, like Ellis and Liberty, well-known and heavily touristed.

A majority of the city’s islands, however, are inaccessible to the public – which is unfortunate, because in many cases they are also the most interesting. There’s U Thant Island, just below Roosevelt, originally called Belmont Island but changed after followers of the guru Sri Chinmoy landed there and built a memorial to the former UN secretary general (himself a close friend of Chinmoy). There’s North Brother Island, which sits between the Bronx and Riker’s Island and for 26 years was the home of ‘Typhoid Mary’ Mallon.

But where most New York islets are lucky to have one claim to fame, Hart Island has several: It has been, at times, a prisoner of war camp, a sanitarium, a missile base, and the city’s potter’s field. In fact, though its other uses have come and gone, it’s this last function that has remained a constant: since the 1869 burial of Louisa Van Slyke, 24, almost 800,000 bodies (most unidentified) have been interred there, stacked three deep across a wide open swatch of land in the center of the island.

The burials are performed by prisoners, bused from Riker’s Island and then ferried aboard the ‘Michael Cosgrove’; they are paid 25 cents an hour and they refer to themselves as the ‘death patrol’ and ‘potter’s navy.’ It was a group of inmates who appealed to the Board of Corrections in the mid-1940s to build a memorial to the forgotten dead, and in 1948 a 30-foot tower went up on the north side of the field. One side bears a cross, another the word ‘peace.’

While the island is uninhabited today, for most of its history it was home to a variety of penal facilities. Toward the end of the Civil War it held Confederate soldiers; at the turn of the century it was, alternately, an old men’s home, a tuberculosis hospital, and a reform school for juvenile delinquents. During World War II the navy built a disciplinary barracks there, and after a German U-Boat was captured nearby, the island held the sub’s crew.

Today the buildings that housed the prisoners – and the generations of support staff – are abandoned, adding yet another level of desolation to the ‘island of the dead.’ Michael Harling, who visited Hart Island a few years ago, said ‘it was eerie and a bit melancholy to see lanes, sidewalks, street lamps, and houses in the middle of that desolation. It was a cool autumn day when I visited and I recall the dead leaves, barren trees and unkempt yards and how they, as much as the derelict homes confirmed the long absence of any living person. I tried to see the town as it once was, a tiny but thriving community set – despite its purpose – in an idyllic location: children, their fathers at work in the nearby prison, laughing and playing on the tidy lawns and gardens, house wives hanging laundry outside in the fresh summer sun and families enjoying a stroll in the warm evenings.’

In 1955, the Army built a NIKE missile base on a 10-acre plot on the north end of the island, one of 10 such facilities in the New York area (and the only one within city limits). By the end of the decade, however, the Soviet Union had shifted its strategic forces to ballistic missiles, rendering the NIKE obsolete; the base was closed in 1961. But other than the missiles themselves, the facility was left largely intact, and the rare visitor can still walk among their rusting armatures and sealed ventilation shafts. (And among the bleachers of Ebbetts Field, which were dumped nearby after the field was torn down.)
Access to Hart Island is strictly prohibited, and it takes an official pass or a heavy amount of bureaucratic wrangling to get permission to visit. Not surprisingly, the city doesn’t want people snooping around a mass grave (though Michael Douglas pays the island a visit in his less-than-memorable film Don’t Say a Word). This hasn’t stopped filmmakers, though – in addition to Don’t Say a Word, the z-grade horror flick Island of the Dead, starring Malcolm McDowell and Mos Def, is set almost entirely on Hart Island, where a group of people are trapped on the island and then attacked by man-eating flies.

Every once in a while, according to the Department of Corrections, a body will be ordered disinterred, usually because a relative has arrived to claim it. And not everyone who ends up in the potter’s field is unknown or forgotten; playwright and novelist Dawn Powell ended up there, as did Academy Award winner Bobby Driscoll – the former because no one wanted to claim the body, the latter because no one was there to identify him when he was found in an East Village tenement in 1968. ‘The souls that rest there may have made great contributions to the City, but we will never know them or be able to memorialize them,’ said Alice Blank, a Manhattan architect who has studied the city’s lesser-known islands. ‘The act of city prisoners – another forgotten and isolated community – burying these souls is perhaps New York’s most poignant and profound drama , one that none of us is entitled to see.’

For those not disposed to taking on the city government in the hopes of winning the right to visit Hart Island, there’s always Joel Sternfeld and Melinda Hunt’s ‘Hart Island: Discovery of an Unknown Territory.’ Sternfeld, a photographer, managed to gain virtually unfettered access to all parts of the island, and his black-and-white pictures render its various features -abandoned dormitories, leaf-strewn roads, rows upon rows of white burial markers – in a stark, eerie detail.

Those who have been to Hart Island invariably refer to it as ‘lonely’ and ‘creepy,’ an island so full of the dead that it has, itself, ceased to exist in any real sense. Prisoners arrive, bury their daily load, and then leave quickly; no one stays very long. They hurry back to City Island, where, standing on the shore, you can still feel the loneliness, wafting across the water.

Clay Risen is a Manhattan-based writer. He is also an associate editor at Flak Magazine.

—Published 10 October 2002