Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Ten Years After the Barricades Came Down: Some Remaining Issues, Need for Compensation

Hard to believe that it has been 10 years since the hell that was the "Reclamation" of Kanonhstaton, or in truth, the "theft" of Douglas Creek Estates, and the attendant chaos, anger and general negativity.  So what has been resolved?  Easy to answer, nothing.  However while the tensions of 2006 to 2007 have seen only occasional flare ups, the potential still lurks for further disruptions since Six Nations adamantly refuses to accept fact and hard evidence and instead opts for old beliefs based on nothing of substance.  Actually the whole debacle is seen as a source of pride for many at Six Nations.  Should you think that this is an exaggeration, I would draw your attention to a publication by the editor of Turtle Island News, Six Nations at the Crossroads:  Douglas Creek Reclamation - A Pictorial History, 2007.  To say the least it is a real eye opener, and shows that there is no willingness to accept any responsibility for the violence and disruption to the lives of those who do not reside at Six Nations.

What follows is something of a selective summary of the events over the past 10 years and of the content of the blog.  It includes what is at this point in time acting as a burr under my blanket.

I began this blog some years ago after becoming furious that a large number of Six Nations members, despite all that has gone on since April 2006, put some abstract remote cause ahead of the health and welfare of their neighbours (I was caught in a nighmare of a traffic tie up caused by a road blockade).  That was unforgivable, and I became resolved to bring to the fore the facts which were for unknown reasons never shown to the public, but are at the disposal of the Federal Government of Canada, as well as the Lands and Resources people at Six Nations.  The blog has brought forth the facts, depicted with references and often photos of original documents, showed clearly that there were no treaties pertaining to the Six Nations, nor was there an acre of unsurendered land - and I could prove it.  Thus the drive to dispel myths by referring to sources of original evidence.  The emergence of groups such as the Haudenosaunee Development Institute (HDI), the strong arm wing of the Hereditary Council, and other groups such as Men's Fire emerged from the ashes of DCE which ensured that the chaos would continue indefinitely (although the two groups are presently at each other's throats).  Our greatest device to clear a path to the truth is the sharp edge of the facts - the evidence, which can be assessed at face value and in context.

Here follows two very broad topics (of many) that have found their way under my skin to cause irritation.  If asked to give just two over arching issues under which much else may be placed, it would be the ignorance of what constitutes evidence thus the tenacious beliefs concerning treaty rights and unsurrendered land, and hypocrisy (sometimes both are wrapped so closely together that they cannot be disentangled), particularly in relation to compensation.

A)  Treaty Rights and Unsurrendered Land:

Bogus Treaty Rights:  It needs to be emphasized, that despite what the propaganda asserts, the truth of the matter is that this sense of entitlement by many at Six Nations stands upon no foundation whatsoever.  As I have showed in detail with supporting references (with copies of the original documents), there are no valid treaty rights or land claims beyond the boundaries of I.R. 40, the present day Six Nations Reserve.  I have shown that the Two Row Wampum agreement of 1613 was, if anything, nothing more than a trade agreement between two Dutch traders and a group of Mohawks whose chiefly status is unknown.  So this whole "ship and canoe" concept is invalid, and this is also the conclusion of a group of academics who convened a conference to examine the matter for the 400th year celebration of the "agreement".  No Government official of New Amsterdam (the British were not involved at the time) signed the document, and it is difficult to convert a trade agreement into some sort of overarching for ever and ever treaty between two peoples.

Then the 1701 so called "Nanfan Treaty" (known by other names) which was nothing more than 20 Six Nations individuals (whose status is unknown) granting to their "Great Father the King of England" the lands comprising what is today Southwestern Ontario.  The problem, the agreement granted these lands to the King and there was merely a request to be allowed to continue beaver hunting here.  This was not a treaty.  The original document does not include the seal of the Colony of New York, nor does the original in England include the seal of the Privy Council - it is a bogus "treaty".  The land after 1696 was not the Five (later Six) Nations land to grant.  They destroyed the Huron (Wyandot) and other Nations there in the mid 1600s, but by 1698 all 8 Six Nations settlements on the north shore of Lake Ontario had been destroyed by the Mississauga and their allies of the Five Fires and the Five Nations had lost the land by conquest.  It goes without saying (or should) that you cannot give away or sell what is not yours to grant.

The Haldimand Proclamation of 1784 was also not a treaty, but merely an agreement allowing the Mohawks and others of the Six Nations to occupy Crown land on both sides of the Grand River which had been purchased of the legal owners, the Mississauga, for that purpose.  It was not and has never been a gift in fee simple.  Had it been so Six Nations members would have sold it all off by now (they were selling off their individual land claims to White people particularly in the 1830s, and moving to another parcel along the Grand River) and ultimately nothing would have remained.  That is precisely what was happening when an alarmed Colonial establishment suggested settling in one place to preserve the Six Nations as a group - rather than to see them disperse to the Ohio country, which many had already done.  It was the Colonial officials and Anglican Ministers who saved the Six Nations from extinction - but in the most twisted way, the truth is being turned around and the saviours are being blamed!  THERE ARE NO VALID TREATY RIGHTS PERTAINING TO THE SIX NATIONS OF THE GRAND RIVER.

The Myth of Unsurrendered Land Within the Grand River Territory:  Furthermore in 1841 all lands outside the present boundaries of the Six Nations Reserve were surrendered to the Crown and patents issued to purchasers, and the resultant monies added to the Six Nations trust funds.  In the years between 1841 and 1849 the Six Nations Chiefs in Council brought up concerns they had, and temporarily back tracked on some parts of the agreement, but it was all sorted out as can be seen in the lengthy Council Minutes between the above dates (which I have read), culminating in Lord Elgin's Report of 1850 when it was entirely signed, sealed and delivered.  Yet to this day, many at Six Nations are deniers of history, and what their Chiefs agreed to permanently.  THERE IS NO UNSURRENDERED LAND IN THE GRAND RIVER TERRITORY.  The Canadian Federal Government have acknowledged this at least 3 times that I know of.  The Joan Holmes and Associates Report submitted to Justice Harrison Arrell of the Superior Court in Brantford underlines this fact - yet still Six Nations does not care to acknowledge the overwhelming evidence - although almost certainly the land researchers there are well aware of these stark realities.

So we have a problem today because history and facts and the truth are meaningless in the face of strongly held but unsupported beliefs.  Anyone who cares to search the Archives of this blog will see the truth staring them in the face.

B)  Compensation:

The Residential School Controversy:  One of the most unjust and hypocritical actions of late at Six Nations is the expectation of compensation for perceived grievances.  Whether it is the vague concept of "Colonialism" or the matter of the Residential Schools, these "issues" have captured the attention of even the world (via the United Nations) and radical leftist Canadians.  The facts mean nothing - spin is all.  Any dissent even in academia is swept under the carpet because of two concepts - political correctness, and the risk of accusations of racism.  So to the world at large, the misplaced sympathy lies with the supposed "victim".  There is indeed a victim here, but it IS NOT Six Nations.

The controversial (even on Six Nations) attempt to cast the Mohawk Institute, a residential school existing at the Mohawk Village between 1838 and 1970, as a place of genocide and torture is simply wrong.  There is no evidence of any such things occurring, except testimony of a few who appear to have been coached into what to say by those with a political agenda and a greed for cash.  So as a result, the politically motivated and politically skewed "Truth and Reconciliation Commission" has basically agreed that anything horrible anyone said happened must have happened, and that justice requires compensation no matter how long ago or how flimsy the evidence.  The Canadian Liberal Government has said it will accept all of the recommendations of this sham exercise.  So the more money, the more lurid the stories and ridiculous accusations (e.g., mass graves and a genocide cover up) flow and the wider the Canadian taxpayers purse strings are opened.  Canadian Government officials and the Anglican Church have been forced into making unwarranted grovelling apologies when none are due.  The truth is that the Six Nations Chiefs (and hence the Clan Mothers) requested that this school be established for the benefit of their children.  It was on the Reserve, not 1000 miles away, and every family would be fully aware of what went on there through direct experience or through questioning their Clan representative.  Nothing was hidden.  The Chiefs did not ask for the school to close down.  It is only 100 plus years later, when memories have become highly selective, and true history forgotten, that an "issue" is made of the place where the teachers of the children of Six Nations were trained.  In a climate of political correctness gone mad, and where an accusation of "racism" is believed as truth, few if any have been willing to speak the truth.  The distortion of this matter is the spark which ignited this blog posting.

My goal here will be to list some of the documented illegal acts perpetrated by Six Nations, and how much compensation (reconciliation) has flowed toward the aggrieved parties.  I maintain that the Residential School monies at Six Nations are ill gotten gains, and that putting forward the view that the Canadian Government and the Anglican Church are culpable and need to offer compensation will then demand that Six Nations reciprocate.  Fair is fair.  Also, huge amounts of money has been dispersed on the basis of a belief that Six Nations have treaty rights and unsurrendered land and thus compensation or entitlements are due.  So what does Six Nations owe the taxpayers of Ontario, and in particular the residents of Haldimand County based on actions from 2006 to 2016?

First and foremost, Six Nations Elected Council and Hereditary Council owe the residents of Haldimand County and in particular those who reside in Caledonia and surrounds, a sincere apology for everything listed below.  To date there HAS NOT BEEN ONE SINGLE APOLOGY for the crimes perpetrated against the affected communities surrounding the Six Nations Reserve.  This would also include, by the way, the communities of Hagersville, Cayuga, Dunnville, Brantford, and of course Caledonia as well as the township areas surrounding these towns, cities and villages.  They not only owe residents here an apology, but there is a huge monetary compensation that must be paid, or procedures need to be applied to obtain these funds if they are not voluntarily forthcoming.

Six Nations Debt to Ontario and Haldimand 2006 to 2016:  What follows are but some of the incidents which have resulted in a massive, as yet unpaid, debt to Canada, Ontario, Brant or Haldimand Counties, and / or individuals residing in these jurisdictions.  The required action for all of the matters listed below - compensation, either monetary or the return of property.

1)  Policing costs:  In order to enforce a valid Court Order in 2006, 200 Ontario Provincial Police were dispatched to the Caledonia area since it was known that Six Nations had called for back up from violent mob - related groups such as the Mohawk Warriors known to possess high powered weapons.  Due to the Dudley George incident at Ipperwash some years earlier where a protester was shot by the OPP, the latter were petrified about any further negative publicity of this nature even to the unprecedented extent of ignoring calls for help from fellow police officers.  They were forced to become the Ontario Pathetic Police, who instead turned their "policing efforts" against the law abiding local residents, not against the violent perpetrators that were creating havoc.  They created a two tiered system of policing, one for Natives (do not arrest them on site when the act is being perpetrated) and others (arrest them on site then and there).  Their new "mission", despite any real evidence based concern, is protecting natives now from non - natives.  It was the "natives" who were perpetrating illegal acts across the whole area, and there had been no organized "resistance" from locals.  It took until 2014, when they arrested J. G. on the Douglas Creek site (he being the occupier of the lone house there) after reviewing video tape showing J.G. attacking Gary McHale for the OPP to once again show that they are willing to do their duty to serve and protect all residents of Ontario.

Recall that all acts in and around the Douglas Creek Estates (DCE) development were based on the false belief that the Six Nations has not surrendered that land.  I have provided the original documents in earlier postings showing unequivocally that the land was surrendered by all Confederacy Chiefs (including chiefs of the Delaware, Nanticoke, St. Regis Onondaga, and other smaller groups) in 1844.  Thus the actions of 2006 onward were entirely illegal acts based on absolutely no valid foundation.  The Six Nations, both the Elected Council and the Hereditary Council, as the representatives of the people, are responsible for these actions and need to be held accountable.

Between 2006 and 2014 the costs of policing at Caledonia (known as "Cashedonia" by some OPP who made huge sums of overtime monies) have reached into the many millions category.  This burden has been shifted to the local taxpayers who ironically have been the recipients of the brutality of many Six Nations members.  What have the latter paid?  Nothing.  They don't pay taxes on money earned on the Reserve, and no "reconciliation monies" have been forthcoming to those who suffered at the hands of Six Nations and their invited "associates".  Required action - compensation and return of the Douglas Creek Estates to the people of Ontario (presently the legal owners but barred from the property).

2)  Acts of Assault and Harassment:

a)  Residents of Haldimand County have been assaulted and maimed for life:  Police officers such as Detective Constable Ormerod and private citizens such as Mr. Gaultieri - assaulted in his own home - and news crew members such as Mr. Garbutt and Mr. McKay CHCH photographers both bloodied and beaten by Six Nations members in the area around DCE are but a couple of examples where Six Nations residents ran amok without any effective policing from the OPP.

b)  Residents have been subjected to psychological trauma:  For example for a time they were required (since the OPP would not come to their rescue and apply the law - it was a "no - go zone") to show "Haudenosaunee passports" that would allow them to go to and from their own homes.  Thugs monitored who was allowed passage to their own property (this property was not a part of the local dispute), or do "pat downs" if they so chose.  A huge power trip heightened by the knowledge that neither the OPP nor any authority would do their duty and protect the citizens.  About 450 families were directly impacted in this way.

Those unfortunate to reside near the Douglas Creek Estates site have been psychologically impacted by for example ATVs driving behind their homes at all hours, or spotlights being shone on their homes, and garbage thrown in their back yards for the mere fact that they happened to live near the DCE.  This is blatant unconscionable abuse by Six Nations members.

3)  Arson:  In 2006 multiple members of Six Nations caused arson episodes within Haldimand County.  For example, there were tire fires, which shows no concern for the environment or anyone else.  It is reminiscent of the tire fire in 1990 when millions of tires were set on fire by Six Nations members and it brought Hagersville and surrounding communities to their knees for 17 days.  Even people overseas recall reading about this horrendous environmental disaster perpetrated by those who claim to have some special relationship with the environment.  Such blatant hypocrisy.  So who paid for this disaster, well it was not Six Nations.

More serious than some tire fires set in 2006 was the torching of the Stirling Street bridge that spanned the railway at 7th Line.  This wanton act of arson was caught on film and to the best of my knowledge not a single person was ever held accountable.  This bridge was one of the main access points for Six Nations members living in the lower Reserve to enter Caledonia for shopping and to reach Highway 6, so was an ill considered act.  The bridge has not been rebuilt - nor as far as I know will it ever be rebuilt.  This isolates the few rural land owners along 7th Line and forces them to go the the Reserve and head down 6th Line.  No one has paid them for the extreme inconvenience caused by the arson.  So what has Six Nations paid for the multi million dollar fire here - zero.

4)  Vandalism:  During the 2006 reign of anarchy vehicles were pushed off the Highway 6 overpass.  A large metal hydro tower was cut and dragged across Argyle Street in Caledonia.  To this day the tower has not been replaced.  The owner Hydro One was forced for 6 years to place 24 hour a day security at the transfer station on Argyle Street due to this event and the ramming of the fence around the site, dousing the equipment with gasoline and setting it on fire (arson) - shutting power off to all nearby communities (including Six Nations).  The cost, millions of dollars.  The compensation - zero.  Argyle Street was barricaded for one month, causing untold inconvenience and economic consequences.  As will be noted later, the "price" of bringing down the barricade was for Ontario to hand over hundreds of acres of land in Brant County as a bribe to stop the illegal activity.  Then there were the series of show homes on the DCE site itself.  All but one were trashed and all appliances and anything of value were stolen by Six Nations members and taken to the Reserve.

5)  Government give aways:  First, to bring down the barricades on Argyle Street, instead of sending in the Canadian Forces (entirely justified) the choice of the Ontario Liberal Government was to bribe the Six Nations by granting them the former Burtch Correctional facility lands in Brant County to potentially be added as Reserve land (and thus taken out of the tax base of Brant County).  This was also contested land, but anyone who has examined the range of documents, as I have, knows that the claim is without foundation as the lands were surrendered properly in the 1840s.  So a classic example of Skinnerian positive reinforcement, which every student who has taken Psychology 101 knows will result in the same behaviour happening over again (and the truth of this has come to pass with the 200 acres of property to be handed over to Six Nations as a bribe to ensure no Caledonia 2006 at McClung).  This land needs to be returned by Six Nations, and compensation for tax losses (if any) provided to Brant County.

6)  Infrastructure destruction:  In 2006 Six Nations members cut down a hydro tower to drag across Argyle Street to form a barricade.  In so doing, they stopped a key infrastructure project - stringing the hydro lines from Niagara Falls to the Golden Horseshoe.  The Mohawk Warriors warned that there would be violence if this work continued.  To this day nothing further has been done, and the miles of towers not demolished by Six Nations stand forlorned and rusting.  This loss of a key energy source from 2006 to 2016 has cost in the billions of dollars.

7)  Commercial losses:  Just one example of many, a giant TSC (Tractor Supply Company) was slated to be built in Dunnville, but the development was cancelled in the summer of 2006.  Among the many small examples was the spring 2012 "parade" led by a Seneca Chief and composed largely of bused in White university students and professional agitators (including anarchists, Palestinian groups etc.) held a morning and mid day long protest which blocked Argyle Street from the north side, across the bridge and all the way to the DCE site.  There were no permits for this event, but the police allowed it to go forward none the less.  The businesses along the route were simply held hostage to this protest, and of course no one ever made up their business losses.

Then there were the "big ticket" losses, such as those suffered by the Henning Brothers who owned DCE and lost multi millions of dollars due to no fault of their own.  They were paid some compensation by the Ontario Government but not a cent from Six Nations.  Then there were the 15 or so local contractors and their workers who had already begun to build homes on the site.  Who is to compensate them fully for their losses?  Whenever the Province of Ontario steps in to provide "compensation", what this means is that the taxpayers of Ontario are footing the bill.  This reality assaults any sense of fairness, and the principle that those who create the damage should pay for it.

8)  Threats resulting in loss of revenue:  The threats against housing developers (e.g., in Hagersville) and even Ontario and County infrastructure projects (e.g., the replacement of the Highway 3 bridge in Cayuga) have resulted in multi million dollar delays and legal expenses.  Six Nations militants received a set back in 2009 when Justice Harrison Arrell of the Brantford Superior Court reviewed the evidence relating to land claims assembled by an independent research firm in Ottawa, and concluded that the Six Nations had no leg to stand on, and so decided to hit those who violated a Court Injunction in relation to a housing project in Brantford with major fines.  Since then even the most militant of Six Nations groups have been hesitant to push too hard in any direct violation of a Court Injunction which names them.  The developers at McClung / Avalon in Caledonia learned from this experience and immediately obtained a Court Injunction against Men's Fire and other Six Nations groups pressing the "unresolved land claim" shtick that, unlike the circumstances in 2006, could and would be enforced by the OPP.

9)  Green energy give aways:  Based on the belief in possible treaty rights (which are invalid and bogus), firms such as Samsung have bribed Six Nations with millions of dollars for "permission" to build wind turbines and solar panels on lands not only in the Haldimand Tract (with the false claim of unsurrendered land) but also Southwestern Ontario in general (under the Nanfan non treaty).  There is no treaty, there are no unsurrendered lands.  All of these millions obtained fraudulently need to be returned.

10)  Continuing injustices:  For any society to function effectively, people must obey and respect the law.  To this day, some / many at Six Nations continue to flaunt the law.  I will not speak of the "tobacco issue" it is simply overwhelming.  What can be said though is that it is wrong to allow a cigarette shack (with former hamburger stand) to operate on Hydro One land.  This is ILLEGAL, but no one is willing to do anything about it (or other such entities in the County).  What would happen if a citizen of Caledonia decided to set up a similar establishment?  The answer is simple, since there is a double standard they would be arrested and prosecuted.  If perchance someone from Six Nations is taken to Court in Cayuga on criminal charges, it is typical for those in the Courtroom to hurl insults at the judge - something that would never never never be tolerated if it was a "regular" Canadian citizen saying the same things.  Double standard!  Complete disrespect, yet Six Nations expects respect ..............................


Summary:  The angry tone of this posting is born out of utter frustration with not only Six Nations leaders, but also their enablers in Government and the White community.  Ten years after the reclamation / theft at DCE we are no further ahead.  Recall that the author was four square on board with Six Nations early in 2006.  Then the two female leaders of the protest asserted that the reason was to slow down development in our area to maintain quality living space for the people already living here.  However the whole "protest" morphed into violence and anarchy.  At that point my support was withdrawn.  IF there was evidence of a valid treaty pertaining to Six Nations, or IF there was evidence of any unsurrendered land in the Grand River Tract, I would be standing up for the rights of Six Nations.  There is no such evidence, and thus Six Nations will not accept the truth.  IF Six Nations does not accept or understand the evidence with respect to non - treaties and surrendered land, then there is no hope of reconciliation.

What is INTOLERABLE is some at Six Nations asking for apologies from the Anglican Church and Canada when the records clearly show that the Chiefs requested that the school be constructed, with the intention being to assist Six Nations members cope with the realities of the world around them.  Most who attended profited from their days at the local school - from 1838 onwards.  In 1970 the Chiefs requested it stay open, not be closed.  So these agencies are expected to apologize for acquiescing to the request of Six Nations to build and maintain a school for their benefit.  Yet at the same time not one single person or group at Six Nations has offered any sort of apology to those who, it can be well documented, they have harmed in very recent history, and for no justifiable reason.  Double standard / hypocrisy prevail.  Unfortunately, the way it works at Six Nations, no matter how much infighting there might be, when an external agent is threatening them in any way they maintain solidarity.  It would take someone or some group to essentially "break ranks" to issue an apology - and that is not going to happen.  So we are all stuck in our respective ruts, there is a failure by Six Nations to recognize the truth, and unfortunately there will be no reconciliation.

Solution:  It would seem that the only reasonable and rational solution is to abolish the Indian Act (that vestige of Colonial rule so hated by Six Nations) and allow each parcel of Reserve land to be registered in fee simple and thus able to be bought and sold by and to anyone, and subject to seizure to pay outstanding debts.  Certainly no further monies should flow to Six Nations until the accounts are settled in full.

I have temporarily entered the world of "Alice in Wonderland" by even thinking such things.  Being a realist I know that this "suggestion" won't fly, but if this seems extreme, then someone needs to offer up a more palatable and viable solution since the status quo is becoming less and less acceptable to locals in Haldimand and Brant, as well as a handful of disgruntled Six Nations, sick of the antics of the HDI and Men's Fire, find their interests align with those of their off Reserve neighbours.


Thursday, 5 May 2016

McClung / Avalon Development Update: Extortion Rears its Ugly Head

Introduction:  While Men's Fire have been on the front lines of opposition to the huge development which will double the size of Caledonia, the HDI (Haudenosaunee Development Institute) has been conspicuous by its absence.  Last year a Provincial Court Injunction dictated that members of Men's Fire were not to trespass on the McClung lands.  The Injunction at Douglas Creek Estates in 2006 was ignored, and anarchy and all its ugly attendees broke out.  The dynamic was different then, and in particular it was possible to funnel hundreds of protesters down 6th Line from the Six Nations Reserve directly to the site.  With the site of the McClung Road development being on the opposite side of the River and a considerable distance from the Rez, most realize that 2006 will never happen again (the protesters would be "swamped" by locals).  Most also realize that things had changed after the 2009 Injunction of Justice Arrell of the Brantford Superior Court, who issued very stiff fines for disobeying the Order, which were enforced by the Ontario Provincial Police when Six Nations members ventured off the Rez.  Now "protesters" risk the real prospect of fines and jail time, and most have tred lightly around the McClung Road project.  Some exceptions involve Men's Fire.  They appear to have taken over the "militant role" from the Haudenosaunee Development Institute (HDI).  Their actions prompted an Injunction, and there is no indication that they are willing to risk getting arrested so far from the Reserve and reinforcements.  They did put up a token resistence a few weeks back in shutting down the water intake project for the development (along Highway 54 and technically not on Avalon lands).  There have been "rumblings" from the HDI, the Hereditary Confederacy Chiefs Council (HCCC) and the Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) about the matter with veiled warnings about the need for "accommodation" and other such concepts, as well as reminding all that there are outstanding (if invalid) land claims that must be addressed.  So, as I have stated before many times, there will be no Caledonia 2006 on the north side of the River.  Never again would the hell that was 2006 repeat itself, at least away from direct access to the Reserve.  So how will each faction at Six Nations react to the new realities?  We already know what Men's Fire have done, and now we learn of the actions of the representatives of the HCCC, the controversial (see previous blog posting) HDI, and as well SNEC.

Agreement Reached for McClung:  This is the title of an article of 5 May 2016 on page 7 of The Sachem.  Here it is announced that SNEC has issued a press release stating that, Six Nations Elected Council and McClung Properties Ltd. have arrived at a benefit agreement regarding the Avalon Homes development property on McClung Rd. in Caledonia.

As to the details of the agreement, The Benefits agreement includes:

1)  The "contribution" of 200 acres to the Six Nations of the Grand River by McClung.

2)  Opportunities for Six Nations members in home construction trades, from landscaping to framing.

3)  Environmental and cultural heritage features will be protected over the entire project area.

The "Rider" Clause:  All of the above "benefits" are to be, without prejudice to Six Nations Claim against the Crown in court action No. 406/95.  Of course Six Nations are grasping at straws here since the documents, which I have personally examined, show without any doubt, that Six Nations have zero valid claims beyond the present boundaries of I.R. 40, the Six Nations Reserve.

Assessment and Conclusion:  McClung cannot be faulted in wanting to take the easy way out - memories of 2006 haunt all developers in the area.  However the "deal" is incredibly short sighted.  The one positive, where both Six Nations and Haldimand County residents will benefit, is the setting aside of about 180 of the 530 acres for environmental purposes.  The writing is on the wall.  The development will proceed - it is already well underway as seen two postings down.  Since there has been little if any direct citizen activism by Haldimand residents, this is really a "gift" and will reduce the chances of any saber rattling by activists (such as myself).  I still detest everything about the project, but am much more likely to keep my mouth shut if environmental and cultural aspects are respected (and my tax bill is not increased as a result of McClung, and the traffic issues are adequately dealt with).


1)  What is essentially taking place here is EXTORTION, meaning, if you agree to give us the land we want, we will ensure that the goons and thugs don't descend on your property, as happened at Douglas Creek in 2006.  Giving in to extortion only opens the door to more of the same.

2)  As I have amply documented in this blog, Six Nations have absolutely no valid treaty rights, or claims to land within the Haldimand Tract in particular or Southern Ontario in general.  Any competent historian or lawyer can easily check the documents and verify the validity of my statement.  As a matter of fact, Justice Arrell of the Superior Court of Brantford requested a report on the matter by Joan Holmes and Associates, and reported that their findings were enough to be in a position to state that there is little to no hope of Six Nations ever winning a legal challenge - the land was properly surrendered in the 1840s.  There is no reason or need to give away any land.

3)  It is unclear where this 200 acres is located.  If within the McClung Development prospective purchasers there might be strongly advised to look elsewhere.  You do not want Six Nations on your doorstep.  Many do not recall 2006, but the anarchy that broke loose has every potential of happening again near Reserve property.

Even if the land is somewhere say along the boundary of the present day Reserve, then it is within the Counties of either Brant or Haldimand.  The 200 acres would be taken out of the land tax base and the lost revenue would have to be made up by the property owners of the County in their property tax assessment - unless the Provincial or Federal Governments decides to ante up.

4)  Whatever agreement is made by the Elected Council, it is a uncertain which Hereditary Council factions will honour it, and which won't.  Men's Fire is not happy; but HDI has unaccountably signed off on the deal.  It is possible here that the secretive HDI has come to some separate agreement (yet to be illuminated), hence the anger expressed by Men's Fire against the lawyer for HDI as noted in my previous blog.  There is bound to be "acrimony spill over", and if McClung thinks they have clear sailing ahead, they need to think again.

Edit:  According to The Haldimand Press, 5 May 2016, p. 2A, Don Boyle, Chief Administrative Officer, Haldimand County (no one else involved appeared willing to be specific), has stated that the location of the 200 acres is NOT in Haldimand County.  Furthermore he said that, it is my understanding it may be near the Burtch Correctional Facility.  This would place it in Brant County likely adjacent to the parcel of land that the Ontario Government was coerced into giving Six Nations in 2006 in exchange for the removal of the barricade on Argyle Street.  Ill gotten gains!  I feel sorry for the people in and around Mount Pleasant, Brant County if their region will "host" new (more) Reserve land.  They may wish to look to 2006 to see what sort of neighbours will be on your doorstep.  No apology has ever been offered from the elected or hereditary council to the residents of Haldimand County for the suffering that a significant number of Six Nations members perpetrated.  The area at Burch is within easy access to the present Reserve, much as the Douglas Creek Estates were in 2006.


Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Physical Confrontation Between Men's Fire and Lawyer for the HDI. The Two Rez Newspapers Accuse Each Other of Taking Sides. Chaotic Factionalism Again

Introductory Summary:  One week ago, "all hell broke loose".  I will provide a quick overview of the major events, in anticipation of more information being available tomorrow.  Very different perspectives of what happened can be found in articles written in Two Row Times (TRT allegedly pro Men's Fire) and Turtle Island News (TIN allegedly pro Haudenosaunee Development Institute - HDI) of 27 April 2016.

The Problem:  As I have blogged about on many occasions over the past few years, HDI has been accused by both the traditional (supporters of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council - HCCC) and elected council (supporters of the Six Nations Elected Council - SNEC) of a lack of transparency.  They have engaged in less than open deals with wind turbine corporations, and land developers and requests to "see the books" have been rebuffed (although denied by HDI).  Things have been simmering for some time, but boiled over last week.  The specific spark was allegedly HDI's handling of the McClung / Avalon housing development east of Caledonia in Seneca Township, and the perceived outstanding land claim.  I have many times blogged about the fact that all lands outside of I.R. 40, the Six Nations Reserve, were surrendered in 1841 and ratified after almost 10 years of discussion via Lord Elgin's Report of 1850.  Six Nations does not own any land in Seneca Township according to the records (which I have included in previous blog postings), it was all surrendered and unless we accept that previous agreements are null and void for some valid reason, Six Nations has no legitimate claim at McClung.  As noted previous, the author here has gone on record that he is also opposed to the development, but for different reasons (environmental and quality of life).  None the less, this is the stance of Men's Fire - that they are the legitimate group to negotiate with the developer, and that HDI has failed in any efforts at obtaining negotiation and accommodation at McClung.

Factionalism -  Men's Fire Versus HDI - Was the Lawyer for the Latter Assaulted?:  Both the HDI and Men's Fire are affiliated with the hereditary council (HCCC).  Acting, they said, under authority of the Cayuga Clan Mothers, about 8 to 15 members of Men's Fire entered the offices of the HDI in the GREAT building in Ohsweken and asked A.D., the lawyer for HDI, to remove himself from the Territory - to get off the Reserve.  When he failed to comply, and as cameras rolled, the lawyer stood his ground despite the confrontation turning adversarial and physical, with a report that A.D. suffered a dislocated knee.  Meanwhile someone called the publisher of TIN who upon arriving called Six Nations Police.  In further questioning, the head of Men's Fire was asked upon what authority was his group taking these actions.  He apparently referred TIN and others to a specific Cayuga Clan Mother (who, it was reported) denies the assertions.  Meanwhile one of the employees working at GREAT (Grand River Employment and Training) entered the dialog and said she was a Cayuga Clan Mother and knew nothing of this.  Men's Fire had stated that they with "monitor" the situation and ensure that A.D. does not return to his office.

Authority of the Clan Mothers:  Since the Clan Mothers appoint the hereditary chiefs, they have the power to "dehorn" them (turf them out of power).  Hence the Clan Mothers have a key role to play at Six Nations.  Stopping for a moment, one could ask if one Clan Mother could be unaware of decisions made by another, especially when both are Cayuga.  The answer is that in the ideal, the answer is no.  In reality there are 4 largely independent Longhouses and any picture of 50 Chiefs and 50 Clan Mothers being in one place at one time is simply an illusion.  Many chiefships remain unfilled, or have been filled by members of an inappropriate clan.  However HDI principals have asserted that anyone who wants further information, for example to see the books, needs to contact their Clan Mother.  The problem, the majority at Six Nations have no idea of the clan to which they belong (via their mother's direct maternal line).  The majority are not affiliated with the hereditary faction and resent having to go through some entity such as HDI, or find a Clan Mother to which to hitch their train, in order to find information on how Community funds are being spent.  The factional cross currents at Six Nations are infinitely complex, as is well documented in this blog.

The Result of the Confrontation:  The lawyer did not leave Six Nations and instead went with the Six Nations Police to press assault charges against the members of Men's Fire present during the altercation.  Members of the elected and the hereditary factions agree that it would be setting a dangerous precedence to allow anyone or any group to arbitrarily decide who should go and who should stay on Six Nations Territory.  Men's Fire has been accused of vigilantism and for being little more than a gang of thugs.  The assumption here is that the lawyer is a Six Nations member.  Herein lies a problem that needs to be addressed, but to date has left many scratching their heads.

Is the HDI Lawyer a Six Nations Member or Even Aboriginal?:  It is known that the HDI lawyer is from Toronto, and has worked on other Reserves where there are unproven allegations that he has been "double dipping" or engaging in shady deals in his role in other Reserves, as well as questionable billing practices at Six Nations.  This does play into the concerns about lack of transparency - not opening the books such that no one knows (although HDI would argue otherwise) where the money from the wind turbine or land deals goes.  Whether it is being invested in the Community, or is lining the pockets of the principals at HDI is a question that has been asked and for which there is to date no apparent clear answer.  It would be one thing if the lawyer was a Six Nations member (although not impacting the question of transparency) since the thought that 8 men with questionable authority would be allowed to drag a member off the Reserve is going to upset a lot of people no matter who they tend to support.  However, what is his aboriginal status?

Some time back, in a public forum, I asked the lawyer his Clan - he said he did not know.  I recall him being asked if he was a Mohawk.  He did not answer, but another member of his entourage said, "it doesn't matter, he is of a good mind".  One member of the elected council has assumed that the lawyer is a Six Nations member, and hence her anger towards Men's Fire.  But what is his status at Six Nations?  Some say he is a Six Nations member, others say he is a Mohawk from Tyendinaga, and others that he has no Native ancestry.  At the moment this is up in the air.  This needs to be cleared up so that future actions will make more sense.  If he is some White guy then banning him from the Territory is a viable option.  If a Six Nations member then as far as I know, he has every right to be on the Reserve and to remain working where he is until such time as a legitimate power (e.g., all Clan Mothers; consensus of elected council; Ontario Bar Association) decide that he has crossed a line and can be removed from his position (but not the Reserve).  I have previously noted that if anyone has a legitimate (non trivial) complaint against a lawyer in Ontario (last I checked, Six Nations is within the boundaries of the Province of Ontario), they need to lodge a formal complaint with the Ontario Bar Association which regulates the activities of lawyers in Ontario.  The first questions to answer are whether the lawyer is aboriginal or White, simultaneous with an inquiry into whether he has committed any infractions relating to the standards and practices of lawyers in Ontario.

The Two Reserve Newspapers in Conflict:  Meanwhile TIN accused Men's Fire of being in collusion with TRT, and who they believe helped "orchestrate the ouster" of the HDI lawyer.  TRT counter that they were on site to film when the lawyer was supposed to be evicted thanks to a "tip".  TRT in turn accused TIN of being in the pocket of the HCCC and HDI (the truth of which is pretty evident to any reader of this paper - they are the publishing arm of the hereditary faction).  The latter does not even consider TRT to be a "Reserve newspaper".  While that accusation may have been to a degree true in previous years when White activists were involved with TRT, that is no longer the case - and the fact that the printing takes place in Brant County hardly disqualifies TRT from being one of two Rez papers.  So there is no love lost between these two publishing entities who will tend to align themselves with one party / faction or the other, although in my opinion one of the two is far more objective and hence trustworthy.

The Opinions of the Elected and Hereditary Factions:  So, where does the hereditary council stand on this issue.  We are not sure yet.  Where does the elected council stand on this issue.  We are not sure yet.

Tomorrow I will check the two newspapers for the most recent events in this developing story.

Update:  There is actually not much to report that is new as reported in the 4 May 2016 editions of both papers, except that it is clear huge fault lines have once again developed within the community. Some are siding with Men's Fire, and others angry in particular about the violence used against A. D.  Apparently on Monday the latter plans to return to work, and those who work in the same building are on edge because Men's Fire plan to be there in force (with possibly members of other Reserves) to ensure that the lawyer does not return to his post.  We shall see what transpires - hopefully cooler heads will prevail.

I have spoken about this problem many times before.  This factionalism, tearing at the fabric of the Community, has been characteristic of the Reserve throughout its history since 1785, and even extending back to the homeland in what is today Upstate New York.  At Six Nations the aggrieved parties would typically contact the Colonial Administration requesting intervention.  For example in 1815 tensions over differences re the participation in the War of 1812 were reaching a boiling point, and 8 chiefs of the Upper Mohawks complained about a dispute with the chiefs of the Lower Mohawks, that reached back to the time when they were living in two villages in the Mohawk Valley, and it was leading to assaults.  They perceived that they, “are treated like outcasts” (Indian Affairs, RG10 Series, Vol. 118, p. 169562, no date but before 27 November 1818 – Vol. 790, p. 7048).  The Indian Department did what they could to get the sides talking, but none the less two years later many Mohawks and others left for the west country where diaspora mixed Haudenosaunee communities existed in southwestern Ontario, and Ohio.  It is all so hauntingly familiar - and to blame for example colonialism flies in the face of historical fact.  In Upstate New York in the 1760s and 1770s if communities had internal or external conflict they turned to Sir William Johnson to settle the matter.  It was the Colonial Authorities who were the peacemakers - a fact that those who have not read the original documents will not realize!  The old ways were in disarray after the terrible epidemics of the 1600s took away those who were the keepers of knowledge.  Most communities never fully recovered, and we are feeling the effects rippling down to present day, but with blame being directed towards the most convenient target.  I have always said, "look in the mirror first before shifting blame elsewhere" - not a popular stance.