Congress is poised to give a foreign mining company 2,400 acres of national forest in Arizona that is cherished ancestral homeland to Apache natives. Controversially, the measure is attached to annual legislation that funds the US Defense Department.
This week, the House and Senate Armed Services Committees quietly attached a provision to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would mandate the handover of a large tract of Tonto National Forest to Resolution Copper, a subsidiary of the Australian-English mining company Rio Tinto, which co-owns with Iran a uranium mine in Africa and which is 10-percent-owned by China. Read more about this action here.
Additionally, in Massachusetts, 321 acres of Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s reservation lands in MA are in dispute because the tribe was “mysteriously” removed from a list of tribes under federal jurisdiction many decades ago. Mashpee had always been there. They had the first Indian district of the United States.
was introduced by U.S. Rep. William Keating, D-Mass., earlier this year; a twin bill has been introduced in the Senate. The bill would affirm a 2015 decision by the Interior Department to take 321 acres of land into trust on behalf of the tribe, effectively ending a legal challenge that threatens the reservation. During his own testimony before the subcommittee, Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Chairman Cedric Cromwell said the “disestablishment of our reservation,” would have a devastating financial impact on the tribe, saying it would be the first instance of the U.S government severing its trust relationship with a tribe since the Termination Era. Read more about the Mashpee issue here.
Then, call you Congressperson to demand they allow the Natives to keep their land - wherever.