Greetings from the Black Mesa Indigenous Support Collective,
With people across the country organizing protests, direct actions, and encampments and mounting anti-coal campaigns as a part of the 2012 Climate Summer of Solidarity* we wish to extend an invitation to return to Black Mesa. During this moment of peak visibility around climate chaos and extraction, we hope to honor and celebrate the nearly-40 year Indigenous-led resistance against cultural genocide, forced relocation, and massive coal mining on Black Mesa.
The genocide on Black Mesa has been recognized internationally. In the late 1980′s the United Nations described the case of the forced relocation as one of the most flagrant violations of indigenous peoples’ human rights in this hemisphere. As mentioned in the recent (2012) Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission report**, PL 93-531 violates human rights, not only because it relocated families to new home-sites on a contaminated uranium site, but also because the families remaining on their ancestral homelands, blockading the coal mining and continuing their traditional way of life, are living with daily harassment and intimidation, including livestock impoundments, and surveillance. Also according to the report, “Navajo people are empowered by [the resistance communities’] steadfastness, their sacrifice and their courage.” As part of the larger support network, we’ve been inspired by these same qualities in the resistance communities.
The aim of this caravan is to honor the requests and words of the elders and their families– to prioritize building with returning supporters, while encouraging new people to come out throughout the year. With their guidance, we will carry their wishes and demands far beyond the annual caravan to link this struggle to our own de-colonial practices and involvement in local social, environmental, and climate justice movements.