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Subjugation in the West

by Ward Churchill

From: “Like Sand in the Wind”, Since Predator Came, 1995

The United States’ “Winning of the West,” which began around 1850 – that is, after the northern half of Mexico was taken in a brief war of conquest - was, if anything, more brutal than the clearing of the East.52 Most of the U.S. wars against native people were waged during the following 35 years under what has been termed an official “rhetoric of extermination.”53 The means employed in military subjugation the indigenous nations of California and Southern Oregon, the Great Plains Basin and northern region of the Sonora Desert devolved from a lengthy series of wholesale massacres. Representative of these are the slaughter of about 150 Lakotas at Blue River Nebraska) in 1854, some 500 Shoshones at Bear River (Idaho) in 1863, as many as 250 Cheyennes and Arapahos at Sand Creek (Colorado) in 1864, perhaps 300 Cheyennes on the Washita River (Oklahoma) in 1868, 175 Piegan non-combatants at the Marias River (Montana) in 1870, and at least 100 Cheyennes at Camp Robinson (Nebraska) in 1878. The parade of official atrocities was capped off by the butchery of another 300 unarmed Lakotas at Wounded Knee (South Dakota) in 1890.54

Other means employed by the government to reduce its native opponents to a state of what it hoped would be abject subordination included the four-year internment of the entire Navajo (Dine) Nation in a concentration camp at the Bosque Redondo, outside Fort Sumner, New Mexico, beginning in 1864. The Dune, after having been force-marched in what they called the "Long Walk," 1400-mile trek from their Arizona homeland, were then held under abysmal renditions, with neither adequate food nor shelter, and died like flies. Approximately half had perished before their release in 1868.55 Similarly, if less dramatically, food supplies were cut off to the Lakota Nation in 1877—militarily defeated the year before, the Lakotas were being held under army guard at the time—until starvation compelled its leaders to "cede" the Black Hills area to the United States.56 The assassination of resistance leaders, such as the Lakotas' Crazy Horse (1877) and Sitting Bull (1890), was also a commonly used technique.57 Other recalcitrant figures like Geronimo (Chiricahua) and Laanta (Kiowa) were separated from their people by being imprisoned in remote facilities like Fort Marion, Florida.58

In addition to these official actions, which the U.S. Census Bureau acknowledged in an 1894 summary as having caused a minimum of 45,000 native deaths, there was an even greater attrition resulting from what were described as "individual affairs."59 These took the form of at large Anglo-American citizens killing Indians, often systematically, under a variety of quasi-official circumstances. In Dakota Territory, for example, a $200 bounty for Indian scalps was paid in the territorial capitol of Yankton during the 1860s; the local military commander, General Alfred Sully, is known to have privately contracted for a pair of Lakota skulls with which to adorn the city. In Texas, first as a republic and then as a state, authorities also "placed a bounty upon the scalp of any Indian brought in to a government office—man, woman, or child, no matter what 'tribe'—no questions asked."61 In California and Oregon, "the enormous decrease [in the native population of 1800] from about a quarter-million to less than 20,000 [in 1870 was] due chiefly to the cruelties and wholesale massacres perpetrated by the miners and early settlers."

Much of the killing in California and southern Oregon Territory resulted, directly and indirectly, from the discovery of gold in 1848 and the subsequent influx of miners and settlers. Newspaper accounts document the atrocities, as do oral histories of the California Indians today. It was not uncommon for small groups or villages to be attacked by immigrants ... and virtually wiped out overnight.63

It has been estimated that Indian deaths resulting from this sort of direct violence may have run as high as one- half million by 1890.64 All told, the indigenous population of the continental United States, which may still ham been as great as 2 million when the country was founded, had been reduced to well under 250,000 by 1900.65 As the noted demographer Sherburn F. Cool has observed, "The record speaks for itself. No further commentary is neces­sary."66

Under these conditions, the United States was able to shuffle native peoples around at will. The Northern Cheyennes and those Arapahos who were closely allied with them, for instance, were shipped from their traditional territory in Montana's Powder River watershed to the reservation of their southern cousins in Oklahoma in 1877. After the Cheyenne remnants, more than one-third of whom had died in barely a year of malaria and other diseases endemic to this alien environment, made a desperate attempt to return home in 1878, they were granted a reservation in the north country. But not before the bulk of them had been killed by army troops. Moreover, they were permanent; separated from the Arapahos, who were "temporarily" assigned to the Wind River Reservation of their hereditary enemies, the Shoshone, in Wyoming.67

A faction of the Chiricahua Apaches who showed signs of continued "hostility" to U.S. domination into the 1880s were yanked from their habitat in southern Arizona and "resettled" around Fort Sill, Oklahoma.68 Hinmaton Yalatkit (Chief Joseph) of the Nez Perce and other leaders of that people's legendary attempt to escape the army and flee to Canada were also deposits; in Oklahoma, far from the Idaho valley they'd fought to retain.69 Most of the Santee Dakotas of Minnesota's woodlands ended up on the windswept plains of Nebraska, while a handful of their relatives remained behind on tiny plots which are now called the "Upper Sioux" and "Lower Sioux" reservations.70 A portion of the Oneidas, who had fought on the side of the rebels during the revolution, were moved to a small reservation near Green Bay, Wisconsin. An even smaller reserve was provided in the same area for residual elements of Connecticut's Mahegans, Mohegans, and other peoples, all of them lumped together under the heading "Stockbridge-Munsee Indians."72 On and on. it went.

Allotment and Assimilation

With the native ability to militarily resist U.S. territorial ambitions finally quelled, the government moved first to structurally negate any meaningful residue of national status on the part of indigenous peoples, and then to dissolve them altogether. The opening round of this drive came in 1871, with the attachment of a rider to the annual congressional appropriations act suspending any further treaty making with Indians. This was followed, in 1885, with passage of the Major Crimes Act, extending U.S. jurisdiction directly over reserved Indian territories for the first time. Beginning with seven felonies delineated in the initial statutory language, and combined with the Supreme Court's opinion in U.S. v. Kagama that Congress possessed a unilateral and "incontrovertible right" to exercise its authority over Indians as it saw fit, the 1885 act opened the door for the subsequent enactment of more than 5,000 federal laws that presently regulate every aspect of reservation life and affairs.73

In 1887, Congress passed the General Allotment Act, a measure designed expressly to destroy what was left of the basic indigenous socio-economic cohesion by eradicating traditional systems of collective landholding. Under provision of the statute, each Indian identified as such by demonstrating "one-half or more degree of Indian blood" was to be issued an individual deed to a specific parcel of land—160 acres per family head, 80 acres per orphan or angle person over 18 years of age, and 40 acres per dependent child—within existing reservation boundaries. Each Indian was required to accept U.S. citizenship in order to receive his or her allotment. Those who refused, such as a substantial segment of the Cherokee "full-blood" population, were left landless.74

Generally speaking, those of mixed ancestry whose "blood quantum" fell below the required level were summarily excluded from receiving allotments. In many cases, the requirement was construed by officials as meaning that an applicant's "blood" had to have accrued from a single people; persons whose cumulative blood quantum derived from intermarriage between several native peoples were thus often excluded as well. In other instances, arbitrary geographic criteria were also employed; all Cherokees, Creeks, and Choctaws living in Arkansas, for example, were not only excluded from allotment, but permanently denied recognition as members of their respective nations as well. Once all eligible Indians had been assigned their allotments within a given reservation—all of them from the worst land available therein—the remainder of the reserved territory was declared "surplus" and opened to ion-Indian homesteaders, corporate acquisition, and conversion into federal or state parks and forests.76

Under the various allotment programs, the most valuable land was the first to go. Settlers went after the rich grasslands of Kansas, Nebraska, and the Dakotas, the dense black-soil forests of Minne­sota and Wisconsin, and the wealthy oil and gas lands of Oklahoma. In 1887, for example, the Sisseton Sioux of South Dakota owned 918,000 acres of rich virgin land on their reservation. But since there were only two thousand of them, allotment left more than 600,000 acres for European American settlers.... The Chippewas of Minne­sota lost their rich timber lands; once each member had claimed [their] land, the government leased the rest to timber corporations. The Colvilles of northeastern Washington lost their lands to cattle­men, who fraudulently claimed mineral rights there. In Montana and Wyoming the Crows lost more than two million acres, and the Nez Perces had to cede communal grazing ranges in Idaho. All sixty-seven of the tribes in Indian Territory underwent allotment.... On the Flathead Reservation [in Montana]—which included Flatheads, Pend Oreilles, Kutenais, and Spokanes ... the federal government opened 1.1 million acres to settlers. A similar story prevailed throughout the country.77

By the time the allotment process had run its course in 1930, the residue of native landholdings in the United States had been reduced from approximately 150 million acres to less than 50 million.78 Of this, more than two-thirds consisted of arid or semiarid terrain deemed useless for agriculture, grazing, or other productive purposes. The remaining one-third had been leased at extraordinarily low rates to non-Indian farmers and ranchers by local Indian agents exercising "almost dictatorial powers" over remaining reservation property.79

Indians across the country were left in a state of extreme destitution as a result of allotment and attendant leasing practices. Worse, the situation was guaranteed to be exacerbated over succeeding generations insofar as what was left of the reservation land base, already insufficient to support its occupants at a level of mere subsistence, could be foreseen to become steadily more so as the native population recovered from the genocide perpetrated against it during the nineteenth century.80 A concomitant of allotment was thus an absolute certainty that ever-increasing numbers of Indians would be forced from what remained nominally their own land during the twentieth century and dispersal into the vastly more numerous American society at large. There, it was predictable (and often predicted) that they would be "digested," disappearing once and for all as anything distinctly Indian in terms of socio-cultural, political, or even racial identity. The record shows that such outcomes were anything but unintentional.

The purpose of all this was "assimilation," as federal policymakers described their purpose, or—to put the matter more unabashedly—to bring about the destruction and disappearance of American Indian peoples as such. In the words of Francis E. Leupp, Commissioner of Indian Affairs from 1905 through 1909, the Allotment Act in particular should be viewed as a "mighty pulverizing engine for break­ing up the tribal mass" which stood in the way of complete Euro-American hegemony in North America. Or, to quote Indian Commissioner Charles Burke a decade later, "[I]t is not desirable or consistent with the general welfare to promote tribal characteristics and organization."81

The official stance was consecrated in the Supreme Court's determina­tion in the 1903 Lonewolfv. Hitchcock decision—extended from Marshall's "domestic dependent nation" thesis of the early 1830s—that the United States possessed "plenary" (full) power over all matters involving Indian affairs. In part, this meant the federal government was unilaterally assigning itself perpetual "trust" prerogatives to administer or dispose of native assets, whether these sere vested in land, minerals, cash, or any other medium, regardless of Indian seeds or desires.82 Congress then consolidated its position with passage of the 1906 Burke Act, designating the Secretary of the Interior as permanent trustee over Indian Country. In 1924, a number of loose ends were cleaned up with passage of the Indian Citizenship Act imposing U.S. citizenship upon all native people who had not otherwise been naturalized. The law was applied across the board to all Indians, whether they desired citizenship or not, and thus included those who had forgone allotments rather than accept it.83

Meanwhile, the more physical dimensions of the assimilation policies were coupled to a process of ideological conditioning designed to render native children susceptible to dislocation and absorption by the dominant society. In the main, this assumed the form of a compulsory boarding school system administered by the Interior Department's Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) wherein large numbers of indigenous children were taken, often forcibly, to facilities remote from their families and communities. Once there, the youngsters were prevented from speaking their languages, practicing their religions, wearing their customary clothing or wearing their hair in traditional fashion, or in any other way overtly associating themselves with their own cultures and traditions. Instead, they were indoctrinated—typically for a decade or more—in Christian doctrine and European values such as the "work ethic." During the summers, they were frequently "farmed out" to Euro-American "foster homes" where they were further steeped in the dominant society’s views of their peoples and themselves.84

Attendance was made compulsory [for all native children, aged five to eighteen] and the agent was made responsible for keeping the schools filled, by persuasion if possible, by withholding rations and annuities from the parents, and by other means if necessary.... [Students] who were guilty of misbehavior might either receive corporal punishment or be imprisoned in the guardhouse [a special "reform school" was established to handle "incorrigible" students who clung to their traditions].... A sincere effort was made to develop the type of school that would destroy tribal ways.85

The intention of this was, according to federal policy makers and many of its victims alike, to create generations of American Indian youth who functioned intellectually as "little white people," facilitating the rapid dissolution of traditional native cultures desired by federal policy makers.86 In combination with a program in which native children were put out for wholesale adoption by Euro-American families, the effect upon indigenous peoples was devastating.87 This systematic transfer of children not only served to accelerate the outflow of Indians from reservation and reservation-adjacent settings, an the return of individuals mentally conditioned to conduct themselves as non-Indians escalated the rate at which many native societies unraveled within lit reservation contexts themselves.88

The effects of the government's allotment and assimilation programs are reflected in the demographic shifts evidenced throughout Indian Country from 1910 through 1950. In the former year, only 0.4 percent of all identified Indians lived in urban locales. By 1930, the total had grown to 9.9 percent. As of 1951 the total had grown to 13.4 percent. Simultaneously, the displacement of native people from reservations to off-reservation rural areas was continuing apace.89 In 1900, this involved only about 3.5 percent of all Indians. By 1930 the total had swelled to around 12.5 percent, and, by 1950, it had reached nearly 18 percent.90 Hence, in the latter year, nearly one-third of the federally recognized Indians in the United States had been dispersed to locales other than those the government had defined as being "theirs."

Reorganization and Colonization

It is likely, all things being equal, that the Indian policies with which the United States ushered in the twentieth century would have led inexorably to complete eradication of the reservation system and corresponding disappearance of American Indians as distinct peoples by some point around 1950. These can be no question but that such a final consolidation of its internal land bases would have complemented the phase of transoceanic expansionism into which the United States entered quite unabashedly during the 1890s.91 That things did not follow this course seems mainly due to a pair of ironies, one geological and the other unwittingly imbedded in the bizarre status of "quasi-sovereignty." increasingly imposed upon native nations by federal jurists and policy makers; over the next hundred years.

As regards the first of these twin twists of fate, authorities were becoming increasingly aware by the late 1920s that the "worthless" residue of territory in which indigenous people were consigned was turning out to be extraordinarily endowed with mineral wealth. Already, in 1921, an exploratory team from Standard Oil had come upon what it took to be substantial fossil fuel deposits on the Navajo Reservation.92During the next three decades, it would be discovered just how great a proportion of U.S. "domestic" resources lay within American Indian reservations. For example:

Western reservations in particular ... possess vast amounts of coal, oil, shale oil, natural gas, timber, and uranium. More than 40 percent of the national reserves of low sulfur, strippable coal, 80 percent of the nation's uranium reserves, and billions of barrels of shale oil exist on reservation land. On the 15-million-acre Navajo Reservation, there are approximately 100 million barrels of oil, 25 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, 80 million pounds of uranium, and 50 billion tons of coal. The 440,000-acre Northern Cheyenne Reservation in Montana sits atop a 60-foot-thick layer of coal. In New Mexico, geologists estimate that the Jicarilla Apache Reservation possesses 2 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and as much as 154 million barrels of oil.93

This led directly to the second quirk. The more sophisticated federal officials, even then experiencing the results of opening up Oklahoma's lush oilfields to unrestrained corporate competition, realized the extent of the disequilibrium and inefficiencies involved in this line of action when weighed against the longer-term needs of U.S. industrial development.94 Only by retaining its “trust authority" over reservation assets would the government be in a continuing position to dictate which resources would be exploited, in what quantities, by whom, at what cost, and for what purpose, allowing the North American political economy to evolve in ways preferred by the country's financial elite.95 Consequently, it was quickly perceived as necessary that both Indians and Indian Country be preserved, at least to some extent, as a facade behind which the "socialistic" process of central economic planning might occur.

For the scenario to work in practice, it was vital that the reservations be made to appear "self-governing" enough for them to be exempt from the usual requirements of the U.S. "free market" system whenever this might be convenient to their federal "guardians." On the other hand, they could never become independent or autonomous enough to assume control over their own economic destinies, asserting demands that equitable royalty rates be paid for the extraction of their ores, for example, or that profiting corporations underwrite the expense of environmental clean-up once mining operations had been concluded.96 In effect, the idea was that many indigenous nations should be maintained as outright internal colonies of the United States rather than being liquidated out-of-hand.97 All that was needed to accomplish this was the creation of a mechanism through which the illusion of limited Indian self-rule might be extended.

The vehicle for this purpose materialized in 1934, with passage of the Indian Reorganization Act, or "IRA," as it is commonly known. Under provision of this statute, the traditional governing bodies of most indigenous nations were supplanted by "Tribal Councils," the structure of which was devised in Washington, DC, functioning within parameters of formal constitutions written by BIA officials.98 A democratic veneer was maintained by staging a referendum on each reservation prior to its being reorganized, but federal authorities simply manipulated the outcomes to achieve the desired results." The newly installed IRA councils were patterned much more closely upon the model of corporate boards than of governments, and possessed little power other than to sign off on business agreements. Even at that, they were completely and "voluntarily" subordinated to U.S. interests: "All decisions of any consequence (in thirty-three separate areas of consideration) rendered by these 'tribal councils' were made 'subject to the approval of the Secretary of Interior or his delegate,' the Commissioner of Indian Affairs."100

One entirely predictable result of this arrangement has been that an inordinate amount of mining particularly that related to "energy development", has occurred on Indian reservations since the mid-to-late 1940s. All uranium mining and milling during the life of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission's (AEC's) ore buying program (1954-1981) occurred on reservation land; Anaconda's Jackpile Mine, located at the Laguna Pueblo in New Mexico, was the largest open-pit uranium extraction operation in the world until it was phased out in 1979.101 Every year, enough power is generated by Arizona's Four Corners Power Plant alone—every bit of it from coal mined at Black Mesa, of the Navajo Reservation—to light the lights of Tucson and Phoenix for two decades, and present plans include a fourfold expansion of Navajo coal pro­duction.102 Throughout the West, the story is the same.

On the face of it, the sheer volume of resource "development" in Indian Country over the past half-century should—even under disadvantageous terms—have translated into some sort of "material improvement" in the lot of indigenous people. Yet the mining leases offered to selected corporations by the BIA "on behalf of their native "wards"—and duly endorsed by the IRA councils—have consistently paid such a meager fraction of prevailing market royalty rates that no such advancement has been discernible. Probably the best terms were those obtained by the Navajo Nation in 1976, a contract paying a royalty of 55 cents per ton for coal; this amounted to 8 percent of market price at a time when Interior Secretary Cecil Andrus admitted the minimum rate paid for coal mined in off-reservation settings was 12.5 percent (more typically, it: was upwards of 15 percent).103 Simultaneously, a 17.5 cents per ton royalty was being paid for coal on the Crow Reservation in Montana, a figure which was raised to 40 cents—less than half the market rate—only after years of haggling.104 What is at issue here is not profit, but the sort of "super-profits" usually associated with U.S. domination of economies elsewhere in the world.105

Nor has the federally coordinated corporate exploitation of the reserva­tions translated into wage income for Indians. As of 1989, the government's own data indicated that reservation unemployment nationwide still hovered in the mid-sixtieth percentile, with some locales running persistently in the ninetieth.106 Most steady jobs involved administering or enforcing the federal order, reservation by reservation. Such "business-related" employment as existed tended to be temporary, menial, and paid the minimum wage, a matter quite reflective of the sort of transient, extractive industry—which brings its cadre of permanent, skilled labor with it—the BIA had encouraged to set up shop in Indian Country.107 Additionally, the impact of extensive mining and associated activities had done much to disrupt the basis for possible continu­ation of traditional self-sufficiency occupations, destroying considerable acreage which held potential as grazing or subsistence garden plots.108 In this sense, U.S. governmental and corporate activities have "underdeveloped" Native North America in classic fashion.109

Overall, according to a federal study completed in 1988, reservation-based Indians experienced every index of extreme impoverishment: by far the lowest annual and lifetime incomes of any North American population group, highest rate of infant mortality (7.5 times the national average), highest rates of death from plague, malnutrition, and exposure, highest rate of teen suicide, and so on. The average life expectancy of a reservation-based Native American male is 44.6 years, that of a female less than three years longer.110 The situation is much more indicative of a Third World context than of rural areas in a country that claims to be the world's "most advanced industrial state." Indeed, the poignant observation of many Latinos regarding their relationship to the United Sates, that "your wealth is our poverty," is as appropriate to the archipelago of Indian reservations in North America itself as it is to the South American continent. By any estimation, the "open veins of Native America" created by the IRA have been an incalculable boon to the maturation of the U.S. economy, while Indians continue to pay the price by living in the most grinding sort of poverty.  

And there is worse. One of the means used by the government to maximize corporate profits in Indian Country over the years—again rubber-stamped by the IRA councils—has been to omit clauses requiring corporate reclamation of mined lands from leasing instruments. Similarly, the cost of doing business on reservations has been pared to the bone (and profitability driven up) by simply waiving environmental protection standards in most instances.112 Such practices have spawned ecological catastrophe in many locales. As the impact of the Four Corners plant, one of a dozen coal-fired electrical generation facilities currently "on-line" on the Navajo reservation, has been described elsewhere:

The five units of the 2,075 megawatt power plant have been churning out city-bound electricity and local pollution since 1969. The plant burns ten tons of coal per minute—five million tons per year—spewing three hundred tons of fly-ash and other waste particulates into the air each day. The black cloud hangs over ten thousand acres of the once-pristine San Juan River Valley. The deadly plume was the only visible evidence of human enterprise as seen from the Gemini-12 satellite which photographed the earth from 150 miles in space. Less visible, but equally devastating is the fact that since 1968 the coal mining operations and power plant requirements have been extracting 2,700 gallons from the Black Mesa water table each minute—60 million gallons per year—causing extreme desertifica­tion of the area, and even the sinking of some ground by as much as twelve feet."3

Corporations engaged in uranium mining and milling on the Navajo Reservation and at the Laguna site were also absolved of responsibility by the BIA for cleaning up upon completion of their endeavors, with the result that hundreds of tailings piles were simply abandoned during the 1970s and 1980s.114 A fine sand retaining about 75 percent of the radioactive content of the original ore, the tailings constitute a massive source of windblown carcinogenic/mutogenic contaminants affecting all persons and livestock residing within a wide radius of each pile.'15 Both ground and surface water have also been heavily contaminated with radioactive by-products throughout the Four Corners region.116 In the Black Hills region, the situation is much the same.'' At its Hanford Nuclear Weapons Facility, located on the Yakima Reservation in Washington State, the AEC itself secretly discharged some 440 billion gallons of plutonium, strontium, celsium, tritium, and other high level radioactive contaminants into the local aquifer between 1955 and 1989.118

Given that the half-life of the substances involved is as long as 125,000 years, the magnitude of the disaster inflicted upon Native North America by IRA colonialism should not be underestimated. The Los Alamos National Scientific Laboratory observed in its February 1978 Mini-Report that the only "solution" its staff could conceive of for the problems presented by wind-blown radioactive contaminants would be "to zone the land into uranium mining and milling districts so as to forbid human habitation." Similarly:

A National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report states bluntly that [reclamation after any sort of mining] cannot be done in areas with less than 10 inches of rainfall a year; the rainfall over most of the Navajo Nation [and many other western reservations] ranges from six to ten inches a year. The NAS suggests that such areas be spared development or honestly labeled "national sacrifice areas.""9

Tellingly, the two areas considered most appropriate by the NAS for designation as "national sacrifices"—the Four Corners and Black Hills regions—are those containing the Navajo and "Sioux Complex" of reservations, the largest remaining blocks of acknowledged Indian land and concentrations of land-based indigenous population in the United States. For this reason, many American Indian activists have denounced both the NAS scheme and the process of environmental destruction which led up to it as involving not only National Sacrifice Areas but "National Sacrifice Peoples" as well.120 At the very least, having the last of their territory zoned "so as to forbid human habitation” would precipitate an ultimate dispersal of each impacted people, causing its disappearance as a "human group" per se.121 As American Indian

Movement leader Russell Means has put it, "It's genocide ... no more, no less"122

Regardless of whether a policy of national sacrifice is ever implemented n the manner envisioned by the NAS, it seems fair to observe that the conditions of dire poverty and environmental degradation fostered on Indian reservations by IRA colonialism have contributed heavily to the making of the contemporary native-diaspora in the United States. In combination with the constriction of the indigenous land base brought about through earlier policies of removal, concentration, allotment, and assimilation, they have created a strong and ever- increasing pressure upon reservation residents to "cooperate" with other modern federal programs meant to facilitate the outflow and dispersal of .Indians from their residual land base. Chief among these have been termination June relocation.

Termination and Relocation

As the IRA method of administering Indian Country took hold, the government returned to such tasks as "trimming the fat" from federal expenditures allocated to support Indians, largely through manipulation of the size and apposition of the recognized indigenous population.

By 1940, the ... system of colonial governance on American Indian reservations was largely in place. Only the outbreak of World War II slowed the pace of corporate exploitation, a matter that retarded initiation of maximal "development" activities until the early 1950s. By then, the questions concerning federal and corporate planners had become somewhat technical: what to do with those indigenous nations which had refused reorganization? How to remove the portion of Indian population on even the reorganized reservations whose sheer physical presence served as a barrier to wholesale strip mining and other profitable enterprises anticipated by the U.S. business community?123

The first means to this end was found in a partial resumption of nineteenth-century assimilation policies, focused this time on specific peoples, or parts of peoples, rather than upon Indians as a whole. On August 1, 1953, Congress approved House Resolution 108, a measure by which the federal legislature empowered itself to enact statutes "terminating" (that is, withdrawing recognition from, and thus unilaterally dissolving) selected native peoples, typically those which had rejected reorganization, or who lacked the kinds of resources necessitating their maintenance under the IRA.124

Among the [nations] involved were the comparatively large and wealthy Menominee of Wisconsin and the Klamath of Oregon— both owners of extensive timber resources. Also passed were acts to terminate ... the Indians of western Oregon, small Paiute bands in Utah, and the mixed-bloods of the Uintah and Ouray Reservations. Approved, too, was legislation to transfer administrative responsibility for the Alabama and Coushatta Indians to the state of Texas.... Early in the first session of the Eighty-Fourth Congress, bills were submitted to [terminate the] Wyandotte, Ottawa, and Peoria [na­tions] of Oklahoma. These were enacted early in August of 1956, a month after passage of legislation directing the Colville Confederated Tribes of Washington to come up with a termination plan of their own.... During the second administration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Congress enacted three termination bills relating to ... the Choctaw of Oklahoma, for whom the termination process was never completed, the Catawba of South Carolina, and the Indians of the southern California rancherias}25

It is instructive that the man chosen to implement the policy was Dilla S. Myer, an Indian Commissioner whose only apparent "job qualification" was in having headed up the internment program targeting Japanese Americans during the Second World War.126 In total, 109 indigenous nations encompassing more than 35,000 people were terminated before the liquidation process had run its course during the early 1960s.127 Only a handful, like the Menomnee and the Siletz of Oregon, were ever "reinstated."128 Suddenly landless mostly poor and largely unemployed, they were mostly scattered like sane n the wind.129 Even as they went, they were joined by a rapidly swelling exodus of people from un-terminated reservations, a circumstance fostered by yes, another federal program.

Passed in 1956, the "Relocation Act" (P.L. 959) was extended in the face of a steady diminishment throughout the first half of the decade in federal allocations to provide assistance to people living on reservations. The statue provided funding to underwrite the expenses of any Indian agreeing to move to an urban area, establish a residence, and undergo a brief period of job trainee The quid pro quo was that each person applying for such relocation was required to sign an agreement that s/he would never return to his or bar reservation to live. It was also specified that all federal support would be withdrawn after those relocated had spent a short period—often no more than six weeks—"adjusting" to city life. ° Under the conditions of near-starvation on many reservations, there were many takers; nearly 35,000 people signed up to move to places like Los Angeles, Minneapolis, San Francisco, Chicago, Den­ver, Phoenix, Seattle, and Boston during the period from 1957 to 1959 alone.131

Although there was ample early indication that relocation was bearing disastrous fruit for those who underwent it—all that was happening was that those relocated were exchanging the familiar squalor of reservation life for that of the alien Indian ghettos that shortly emerged in most major cities—the government accelerated the program during the 1960s. Under the impact of termination and relocation during the '50s, the proportion of native people who had been "urbanized" rose dramatically, from 13.5 percent at the beginning of the decade to 27.9 percent at the end. During the sixties, relocation alone drove k figure upwards to 44.5 percent. During the 1970s, the program began to be phased out, and the rate of Indian urbanization decreased sharply, with the result that the proportion had risen to "only" 49 percent by 1980.132 Even without a formal federal relocation effort on a national scale, the momentum of what had been set in motion over an entire generation carried the number into the mid-fiftieth percentile by 1990, and there is no firm indication the trend is abating.133

Despite much protestation to the contrary, those who "migrated" to the cities under the auspices of termination and relocation have already begun to join the legions of others, no longer recognized as Indians even by other Indians, who were previously discarded and forgotten along the torturous route from 1776 to the present.134 Cut off irrevocably from the centers of their socio-cultural existence, they have increasingly adopted arbitrary and abstract methods to signify their "Indianness." Federally sanctioned "Certificates of Tribal Enrollment" have come to replace tangible participation in the political life of their nations as emblems of membership. Federally issued "Certificates of degree of Indian Blood" have replaced discernible commitment to Indian interests as the ultimate determinant of identity.135 In the end, by embracing such "standards," Indians are left knowing no more of being Indian than non-Indians. The process is a cultural form of what, in the physical arena, has been termed "autogenocide."136


The Indian policies undertaken by the United States during the two centuries since its inception appear on the surface to have been varied, even at times contradictory. Openly genocidal at times, they have more often been garbed, however thinly, in the attire of "humanitarianism." In fact, as the matter was put by Alexis de Tocqueville, the great French commentator on the early American experience, it would occasionally have been "impossible to destroy men with more respect to the laws of humanity."137 Always, however, there was an underlying consistency in the sentiments which begat policy: to bring about the total dispossession and disappearance of North America's indigenous population. It was this fundamental coherence in U.S. aims, invariably denied by responsible scholars and officials alike, which caused Adolf Hitler to ground his own notions of lebensraumpolitik ("politics of living space") in the U.S example.138

Neither Spain nor Britain should be the models of German expansion, but the Nordics of North America, who had ruthlessly pushed aside an inferior race to win for themselves soil and territory for the future. To undertake this essential task, sometimes difficult, always cruel—this was Hitler's version of the White Man's Burden.139

As early as 1784, A British observer remarked that the intent of the fledgling United States with regard to American Indians was that of "extirpating them totally from the face of the earth, men, women and children."140 In 1825 Secretary of State Henry Clay opined that U.S. Indian policy should be predicated on a presumption that the "Indian race" was "destined to extinction" in the face of persistent expansion by "superior" Anglo-Saxon "civiliza­tion."141 During the 1870s, General of the Army Phil Sheridan is known to have called repeatedly for the "complete extermination" of targeted native groups as a means of making the West safe for repopulation by Euroamericans142 Subsequent advocates of assimilations demanded the disappearance of any survivors through cultural and genetic absorption by their conquerors.143 Well into the twentieth century, Euro-America as a whole typically referred—often hopefully—to indigenous people as "the vanishing race," decimated and ultimately subsumed by the far greater number of invaders who had moved in upon their land.144

Many of the worst U.S. practices associated with these sensibilities have long since been suspended (arguably, because their goals were accomplished Yet, large-scale and deliberate dislocation of native people from their land is anything but an historical relic. Probably the most prominent current example is that of the Big Mountain Dine, perhaps the largest remaining enclave of traditionally oriented Indians in the United States. Situated astride an estimated 24 billion tons of the most accessible low sulfur coal in North America, all 13,000 people in the Big Mountain area are even now being forcibly expelled to make way for the Peabody Corporation's massive shovels. There being no place left on the remainder of the Navajo Reservation in which to accommodate their sheep-herding way of life, the refugees, many of them elderly, are being "resettled" in off-reservation towns like Flagstaff, Arizona.145 Some have been sent to Phoenix, Denver, and Los Angeles. All suffer extreme trauma and other maladies resulting from the destruction of their community and consequent "transition."146

Another salient illustration is that of the Western Shoshone. Mostly resident to a vast expanse of the Nevada Desert secured by their ancestors in Be 1863 Treaty of Ruby Valley, the Shoshones have suffered the fate of becoming the "most bombed nation on earth" by virtue of the United States having located the majority of its nuclear weapons testing facilities in the southern portion of their homeland since 1950. During the late seventies, despite its being unable to demonstrate that it had ever acquired valid title to Be territory the Shoshones call Newe Segobia, the government began to move mo the northern area as well, stating an intent to construct the MX missile system there. While the MX plan has by now been dropped, the Shoshones are still being pushed off their land, "freeing" it for use in such endeavors as nuclear waste dumps like the one scheduled to be built at Yucca Mountain over the next few years.147

In Alaska, where nearly 200 indigenous peoples were instantly converted into "village corporations" by the 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, there is a distinct possibility that the entire native population of about 22,000 will be displaced by the demands of tourism, North Slope oil development, and other "developmental" enterprises by some point early in the next century. Already, their land base has been constricted to a complex of tiny "townships" and their traditional economy mostly eradicated by the impacts of commercial fishing, whaling, and sealing, as well as the effects of increasing Arctic industrialization on regional caribou herds and other game animals. Moreover. there is a plan—apparently conceived in all seriousness—to divert the water flow of the Yukon River southward all the way to the Rio Grande, an expedient to support continued non-Indian population growth in the arid regions of the "lower 48" states and create the agribusiness complex in the northern Mexican provinces of Sonora and Chihuahua envisioned in a "free lade agreement" proposed by the Bush administration.149 It seems certain that no traditional indigenous society can be expected to stand up against such an environmental onslaught.

Eventually, if such processes are allowed to run their course, the probability is that a "Final Solution of the Indian Question" will be achieved. The key to this will rest, not in an official return to the pattern of nineteenth-century massacres or emergence of some Auschwitz-style extermination center, but in the erosion of socio-cultural integrity and confusion of identity afflicting any people subjected to conditions of diaspora. Like water flowing from a leaking bucket, the last self-consciously Indian people will pass into oblivion silently, unnoticed and un-remarked. The deaths of cultures destroyed by such means usually occur in this fashion, with a faint whimper rather than resistance and screams of agony.

There are, perhaps, glimmers of hope flickering upon the horizon. One of the more promising is the incipient International Convention on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Drafted over the past decade by the United Nations Working Group on Indigenous Populations, the instrument was due for submission to the General Assembly during the summer of 1992. It was supposed to be ratified by the latter body in October—the 500th anniversary of rise Columbian expedition which unleashed the forces discussed herein. The Convention would at last have extended to native peoples the essential international legal protections enjoyed by their colonizers the world over. Unfortunately as of1995, it was still pending.150 Should it be adhered to by this "nation of laws”, the instrument will effectively bar the United States from completing its quid' ongoing drive to obliterate the remains of Native North America. If not—and the United States has historically demonstrated a truly remarkable tendency to simply ignore those elements of international legality it finds inconvenient— the future of American Indians looks exceedingly grim.151


52. On the war with Mexico, see George Pierce Garrison, Westward Expansion, 1841-1850 (New York: Harper, 1937)

53.David Svaldi, Sand Creek and the Rhetoric of Extermination: A Case-Study in Indian-White Relations (Washington, DC: University Press of America, 1989).

54.Much of this is covered in Ralph K. Andrist, The Long Death: The Last Days of me Plains Indians (New York: Collier Books, 1964). See also Paul Andrew Hutton, Phil Sheridan and His Army (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1985).

55.L. R. Bailey, The Long Walk: A History of the Navajo Wars, 1846-68 (Pasadena. California: Westernlore Publications, 1978).

56.This episode is covered adequately in Edward Lazarus, Black Hills, White Justice: Tut Sioux Nation Versus the United States, 1775 to the Present (New York: Harper Collies. 1991), pp. 71-95.

57.See Robert Clark, ed., The Killing of Chief Crazy Horse (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1976), and the concluding chapter of Stanley Vestal's Sitting Bull: Champion of the Sioux (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1957).

58.The imprisonment program is described in some detail in the memoirs of the commander of Marion Prison, later superintendent of the Carlisle Indian School. See Richard Hen-Pratt, Battlefield and Classroom: Four Decades with the American Indian, 1867-1904 (Ne* Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press [reprint], 1964).

59.U.S. Bureau of the Census, Report on Indians Taxed and Indians Not Taxed, op. cit., pc 637-38.

60.Edward Lazarus, op. cit., p. 29. It should be noted that, contrary to myth, scalping was a practice introduced to the Americas by Europeans, not native people. It was imported by the British—who had previously used it against the Irish—during the seventeenth century] See Nicholis P. Canny, "The Ideology of English Colonialism: From Ireland to America" William and Mary Quarterly, 3d Series, Vol. 30 (1973), pp. 575-98.

61.Lenore A. Stiffarm and Phil Lane, Jr., "The Demography of Native North America: 1 Question of American Indian Survival," in The State of Native America: Genocide, Colonization and Resistance, M. Annette Jaimes, ed. (Boston: South End Press, 1992), p. 35. It is instructive that the Texas state legislature framed its Indian policy as follows: "We recognize no title in the Indian tribes resident within the limits of the state to any portion of the soil thereof; and ... we recognize no right of the Government of the United States to make to make any treaty of limits with the said Indian tribes without the consent of the Government of the-state" (quoted in Wilcomb E. Washburn, op. cit., p. 174). In other words, the intention w a extermination.

62.James M. Mooney, "Population," in Handbook of the Indians North of Mexico, Vol 2. Frederick W. Dodge, ed. (Washington, DC: Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin N: 30, Smithsonian Institution, 1910), pp. 286-87.

63.Sherburn F. Cook, The Conflict Between the California Indian and White Civilization (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1976), pp. 282-84.

64.Russell Thornton, American Indian Holocaust and Survival: A Population History Sinn 1492 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1987), p. 49.

65.Russell Thornton (ibid.) estimates the aboriginal North American population to ban been about 12.5 million, most of it within what is now the continental United States. Henry F. Dobyns (op. cit.) estimates it as having been as high as 18.5 million. Kirkpatrick Sale, it his The Conquest of Paradise: Christopher Columbus and the Columbian Legacy (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1990), splits the difference, placing the figure at 15 million. Extreme attrition due to disease and colonial warfare had already occurred prior to the American War of Independence. Something on the order of 2 million survivors in 1776 therefore seems a  reasonable estimate. Whatever the exact number in that year, it had been reduced to 237,196 according to U.S. census data for 1900. See U.S. Bureau of the Census, Fifteenth Census of The United States, 1930: The Indian Population of the United States and Alaska, Table 2, Indian Population by State, 1890-1930" (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, 1937), p. 3.

66.Sherburn F. Cook, op. cit, p. 284.

67.Donald J. Berthrong, The Cheyenne andArapaho Ordeal: Reservation and Agency Life in the Indian Territory, 1875-1907 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1976). See also Mari Sandoz, Cheyenne Autumn (New York: Avon Books, 1964).

68.. Dan L. Thrapp, The Conquest of Apacheria (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1967).

69.. Merril Beal, / Will Fight No More Forever: Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce War (Seattle: 1'niversity of Washington Press, 1963).

70. D. Kenneth Carley, The Sioux Uprising of 1862 (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society, 1961).

71.Edmund Wilson, Apology to the Iroquois (New York: Farrar, Strauss, and Cudahy, I960).

72.As of 1980, a grand total of 582 members of these amalgamated peoples were reported as living on the Stockbridge Reservation. See U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1980 Census of w Population, Supplementary Report, Table I, op. cit.

73. The rider to the annual congressional appropriations act can be found at Ch. 120,16 Stat. 544, 566; See also the Major Crimes Act (Ch. 341, 24 Stat. 362, 385) and U.S. v. Kagama (118 U.S. 375 [ 1886]). The next major leap in this direction was passage of the Assimilative Crimes Act (30 Stat. 717) in 1898, applying state, territorial, and district criminal codes to "federal enclaves" such as Indian reservations. See generally, Robert N. Clinton, "Develop­ment of Criminal Jurisdiction on Reservations: A Journey through a Jurisdictional Maze," Arizona Law Review, Vol. 18, No. 3 (1976), pp. 503-83.

74. General Allotment Act (Ch. 119, 24 Stat. 388). Overall, see Janet A. McDonnell, The Dispossession of the American Indian, 1887-1934 (Bloomington/Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1991).

75.. As is stated in the current procedures for enrollment provided by the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, "Many descendants of the Cherokee Indians can neither be certified nor qualify for tribal membership in the Cherokee Nation because their ancestors were not enrolled during the final enrollment [during allotment, 1899-1906]. Unfortunately, these ancestors did not meet the [federal] requirements for the final enrollment. The requirements at the time were ... having a permanent residence within the Cherokee Nation (now the 14 northeastern counties of Oklahoma). If the ancestors had... settled in the states of Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, or Texas, they lost their citizenship within the Cherokee Nation at that time."

76. D. S. Otis, The Dawes Act and the Allotment of Indian Land (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1973).

77. James S. Olson and Raymond Wilson, Native Americans in the Twentieth Century Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1984), pp. 82-83.

78. Kirk Kicking Bird and Karen Ducheneaux, One Hundred Million Acres (New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1973).   

79.The powers of individual agents in this regard accrued from an amendment (26 Stat, 194) made in 1891. The language describing these powers comes from Vine Deloria, J. and Clifford M. Lytle, op. cit., p. 10.

80. This is known as the "Heirship Problem," meaning that if a family head with four children began with a 160-acre parcel of marginal land in 1900, his/her heirs would each inherit 41 acres somewhere around 1920. If each of these heirs, in turn, had four children, then their heirs would inherit 10 acres, circa 1940. Following the same formula, their heirs would have inherited 2.5 acres each in 1960, and their heirs would have received about one-half an acre each in 1980. In actuality, many twentieth-century families have been much larger during the twentieth century—as is common among peoples recovering from genocide—and contemporary descendants of the original allottees often find themselves measuring their "holdings" in square inches. For a fuller discussion of the issue, and a description of the material circumstances otherwise confronting Indians during the early twentieth century the opening chapters of Vine Deloria, Jr., and Clifford M. Lytle, The Nations Within. The Past and Future of American Indian Sovereignty (New York: Pantheon Books, 198-i

81.Rebecca L. Robbins, "Self-Determination and Subordination: The Past, Present ace Future of American Indian Governance," in The State of Native America, op. cit., p. 93. The quote from Leupp comes from his book, The Indian and His Problem (New York: Charles Scribner and Sons, Publishers, 1910), p. 93; that from Burke from a letter to William Williamson on September 16, 1921 (William Williamson Papers, Box 2, File—Indian Matters, Misc., I. D. Weeks Library, University of South Dakota).

82. Lonewolf v. Hitchcock (187 U.S. 553); among other things, the decision meant that the United States had decided it could unilaterally absolve itself of any obligation or responsi­bility it had incurred under provision of any treaty with any indigenous nation while simultaneously considering the Indians to still be bound by their treaty commitments. See Ann Laquer Estin, "Lonewolf v. Hitchcock: The Long Shadow," in The Aggressions of Civilization: Federal Indian Policy Since the 1880s, Sandra L. Cadwallader and Vine Deloria, Jr., eds. (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1984), pp. 215-45. This was at utterly illegitimate posture under international custom and convention at the time, a matter amply reflected in contemporary international black letter law. See Sir Ian Sinclair, 77a Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (Manchester: Manchester University Press [2d ed., 1984).

83. See the Burke Act (34 Stat. 182) and the Indian Citizenship Act (Ch. 233, 43 Stat. 25). as well as Vine Deloria, Jr., and Clifford M. Lyte, American Indians, American Justice (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1983).

84.Much of this is covered—proudly—in Richard Henry Pratt, op. cit. See also Estelle Fuchis and Robert J. Havighurst, To Live on This Earth: American Indian Education (Garden City New York: Anchor Books, 1973).

85.Evelyn C. Adams, American Indian Education: Government Schools and Economic Progress (Morningside Heights, New York: King's Crown Press, 1946), pp. 55-56, 70.

86.The phrase used was picked up by the author in a 1979 conversation with Floyd Red Crow Westerman, a Sisseton Dakota who was sent to a boarding school at age six. For a broader statement of the same theme, see Vine Deloria, Jr., "Education and Imperialism" Integrateducation, Vol. XIX, Nos. 1-2 (Jan. 1982), pp. 58-63. For ample citation of the federal view, see J. U. Ogbu, "Cultural Discontinuities and Schooling," Anthropology and Education Quarterly, Vol. 12, No. 4 (1982), pp. 1-10.

87.On adoption policies, including those pertaining to so-called blind adoptions (where children are prevented by law from ever learning their parents' or tribe's identities), see Tillie Blackbear Walker, "American Indian Children: Foster Care and Adoptions," in  Conference on Educational and Occupational Needs of American Indian Women, U.S. CCfice of Education, Office of Educational Research and Development, National Institute

of      Education (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1980), pp. 185-210.

88. The entire program involving forced transfer of Indian children is contrary to Article II  of the United Nations 1948 Convention on Punishment and Prevention of the Crime of genocide. See Ian Brownlie, Basic Documents on Human Rights (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1982), p. 32.

89. . Russell Thornton, American Indian Holocaust, op. cit., p. 227.

90. These estimates have been arrived at by deducting the reservation population totals from the overall census figures deployed in Francis Paul Prucha (op. cit.), and then subtracting Be urban population totals used by Russell Thornton, op. cit., p. 227.

91. The United States, as is well known, undertook the Spanish-American War in 1898 primarily to acquire oversees colonies, notably the Philippines and Cuba (for which Puerto Rico was substituted at the last moment). It also took the opportunity to usurp the government of Hawaii, about which it had been expressing ambitions since 1867, and to obtain a piece of Samoa in 1899. This opened the door to its assuming "protectorate" responsibility over Guam and other German colonies after World War I, and many of the Micronesian possessions of Japan after World War II. See Julius Pratt, The Expansionists of 1898 Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1936). See also Richard O'Connor, Pacific Destinyy: An Informal History of the U.S. in the Far East, 1776-1968 (Boston: Little, Brown k Co., Inc., 1969).

92. Anita Parlow, Cry, Sacred Ground: Big Mountain, USA (Washington, DC: Christie institute, 1988), p. 30.

93. James S. Olson and Raymond Wilson, op. cit., p. 181.

94. For a good overview, see Craig H. Miner, The Corporation and the Indian: Tribal Sovereignty and Industrial Civilization in Indian Territory, 1865-1907 (Columbia: Univer­sity of Missouri Press, 1976).

95. This is brought out in thinly veiled fashion in official studies commissioned at the time. See. for example, U.S. House of Representatives, Committee of One Hundred, The Indian Problem: Resolution of the Committee of One Hundred Appointed by the Secretary of Interior and Review of the Indian Problem (Washington, DC: H. Doc. 149, Ser. 8392, 68th Cong., 1st Sess., 1925). See also Lewis Meriam et al., The Problem of Indian Administration Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1928).

96. This was standard colonialist practice during the same period. See Mark Frank Lindsey, The Acquisition and Government of Backward Territory in International Law (London: Longmans Green, 1926).

97. For what may be the first application of the term "internal colonies" to analysis of the situation of American Indians in the United States, see Robert K. Thomas, "Colonialism: Classic and Internal," New University Thought, Vol. 4, No. 4 (Winter 1966-67).

98.. Indian Reorganization Act (Ch. 576, 48 Stat. 948); for the best account of how the IRA "package" was assembled, see the relevant chapters of Vine Deloria, Jr., and Clifford M. Lytle, The Nations Within, op. cit.

99.The classic example of this occurred at the Hopi Reservation, where some 85 percent of ill eligible voters actively boycotted the IRA referendum in 1936. Indian Commissioner John Collier then counted these abstentions as "aye" votes, making it appear as if the Hopis cad been nearly unanimous in affirming reorganization rather than overwhelmingly rejecting (unpublished manuscript in the LaFarge Collection, University of Texas at Austin). Ii general, the IRA referendum process was similar to—and served essentially the same purpose as—those more recently orchestrated abroad by the State Department and CIA: see Edward S. Herman and Frank Brodhead, Demonstration Elections: U.S.-Staged Election in the Dominican Republic, Vietnam, and El Salvador (Boston: South End Press, 1984).

100.Rebecca L. Robbins, op. cit., p. 95.

101.See generally, Ward Churchill and Winona LaDuke, "Native America: The Politic* Economy of Radioactive Colonization," in Critical Issurs in Native North America, Vol. II (Copenhagen: IWGIA Doc. 63, 1991), pp. 71-106. See also "The Earth Is Our Mother" included in this book.

102.Alvin Josephy, "Murder of the Southwest," Audubon Magazine (Sept. 1971), p. 42.

103.Bruce Johansen and Roberto Maestas, Wasi'chu: The Continuing Indian Wars (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1979), p. 162. The minimum rate was established by as Federal Coal Leasing Act of 1975, applicable everywhere in the United States except Indian reservations.

104.James S. Olson and Raymond Wilson, op. cit., p. 200.

105.The term "super-profits" is used in the manner defined by Richard J. Barnet and Ronald E. Miiller in their Global Reach: The Power of the Multinational Corporations (New York Touchstone Books, 1974).

106.U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Indian Service Population and Labor Force Estimates (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1989). Tine study shows one-third of the 635,000 reservation-based Indians surveyed had an annual income of less than $7,000.

107.U.S. Senate, Committee on Labor and Human Resources, Guaranteed Job Opportunity Act: Hearing on S. 777 (Washington, DC: 100th Cong., 1st Sess., 23 Mar. 1987, Appends A).

108.The classic image of this is that of Emma Yazzie, an elderly and very traditional Dine who subsists on her flock of sheep, standing forlornly before a gigantic Peabody coal shovel which is digging up her scrubby grazing land on Black Mesa. The coal is to produce electricity for Phoenix and Las Vegas, but Yazzie has never had electricity (or running water) in her home. She gains nothing from the enterprise. To the contrary, her very way of life is being destroyed before her eyes. See Bruce Johansen and Roberto Maestas, op. cit., p.141.

109.The term "underdevelopment" is used in the sense defined by Andre Gunder Frank in his Capitalism and Underdevelopment in Latin America (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1967).

110.U.S. Bureau of the Census, A Statistical Profile of the American Indian Population (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1984). See also U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Chart Series Book (Washington, DC: Public Health Serve: HE20.9409.988, 1988).

111.The terminology accrues from Eduardo Galeano, The Open Veins of Latin America Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1973

112.Thus far, the only people who have been able to turn this around have been the Northern Cheyenne, who won a 1976 lawsuit to have Class I environmental protection standard; applied to their reservation, thereby halting construction of two coal-fired generating plants before it began. The BIA had already waived such protections on the Cheyennes' "behalf” See Bruce Johansen and Roberto Maestas, op. cit., p. 174.

.13. RexWeyler, Blood ofthe Land: The U.S. Government and Corporate War Against the American Indian Movement (New York: Everest House Publishers, 1982), pp. 154-55.

114.Tom Barry, "Bury My Lungs at Red Rock," The Progressive (Feb. 1979), pp. 197-99.

115.On tailings and associated problems such as radon gas emissions, see J. B. Sorenson, Radiation Issues: Government Decision Making and Uranium Expansion in Northern New Mexico (Albuquerque: San Juan Regional Study Group, Working Paper 14, 1978). On carcinogenic and mutogenic effects, see J. M. Samet et al., "Uranium Mining and Lung Cancer r. Navajo Men," New England Journal of Medicine, No. 310 (1984), pp. 1481-484. See also Harold Tso and Laura Mangum Shields, "Navajo Mining Operations: Early Hazards ad Recent Interventions," New Mexico Journal of Science, Vol. 20, No. 1 (June 1980).

116.Richard Hoppe, "A stretch of desert along Route 66—the Grants Belt—is chief locale for U.S. uranium," Engineering and Mining Journal (Nov. 1978). See also Nancy J. Owens, "Can Tribes Control Energy Development?" in American Indians and Energy Development, Joseph Jorgenson, ed. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Anthropology Resource Center, 1978).

117.Amelia Irvin, "Energy Development and the Effects of Mining on the Lakota Nation," Journal of Ethnic Studies, Vol. 10, No. 2 (Spring 1982).

118.Elouise Schumacher, "440 Billion Gallons: Hanford Wastes Would Fill 900 King 3omes," Seattle Times (13 Apr. 1991).

119.Bruce Johansen and Roberto Maestas, op. cit., p. 154. They are referring to Thadis Box et al., Rehabilitation Potential for Western Coal Lands (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Ballinger Publishing Co., 1974). The book is the published version of a study commissioned by fee National Academy of Sciences and submitted to the Nixon administration in 1972.

120.Russell Means, "Fighting Words on the Future of Mother Earth," Mother Jones (Dec. 1980), p. 27.

121.Bringing about the destruction of an identifiable "human racial, ethnical or racial group" is such, is and always has been the defining criterion of genocide. As the matter was framed by Raphael Lemkin, who coined the term: "Generally speaking, genocide does not neces­sarily mean the immediate destruction of a nation, except when accomplished by mass killing of all the members of a nation. It is intended rather to signify a coordinated plan of different actions aimed at destruction of the essential foundations of the life of national groups, with the aim of annihilating the groups themselves. The objective of such a plan would be disintegration of the political and social institutions, of culture, language, national feelings, religion, and the economic existence of national groups, and the destruction of personal security, liberty, health, dignity, and the lives of individuals belonging to such groups. Genocide is the destruction of the national group as an entity, and the actions involved are directed against individuals, not in their individual capacity but as members of the national group (emphasis added); see Raphael Lemkin, Axis Rule in Occupied Europe (Concord, New Hampshire: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace/Rumford Press, 1944), p. "9. The view is reflected in the 1948 Convention on Punishment and Prevention of the Crime of Genocide; see Ian Brownlie, op. cit.

122.Russell Means, op. cit.

123.Rebecca L. Robbins, op. cit., p. 97.

124.The complete text of House Resolution 108 appears in Part II of Edward H. Spicer' s A Short History of the United States (New York: Van Nostrum Publishers, 1968).

125.James E. Officer, "Termination as Federal Policy: An Overview," in Indian Self-Rule: First-Hand Accounts of Indian-White Relations from Roosevelt to Reagan, Kenneth R. Philp, ed. (Salt Lake City: Howe Brothers, 1986), p. 125.

126.Richard Drinnon, Keeper of Concentration Camps: Dillon S. Myer and American. Racism (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1987).

127.Raymond V. Butler, "The Bureau of Indian Affairs Activities Since 1945," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, No. 436 (1978), pp. 50-60. The last dissolution - that of the Oklahoma Ponca - was delayed in committee and was not consum­mated until 1966.

128.See generally, Nicholas Peroff, Menominee DRUMS: Tribal Termination and Restoration, 1954-1974 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1982).

129.Oliver LaFarge, "Termination of Federal Supervision: Disintegration and the American Indian," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, No. 311 (May 1975), pp. 56-70.

130.See generally, Donald L. Fixico, Termination and Relocation: Federal Indian Policy 1945-1960 (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1986).

131.Sharon O'Brien, American Indian Tribal Governments (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1989), p. 86.

132.U.S. Bureau of the Census, General Social and Economic Characteristics: United States Summary (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1983), p. 92. See also Russell Thornton, American Indian Holocaust, op. cit., p. 227.

133.NCAI Briefing Paper, op. cit.

134.For use of the term "migration" to describe the effects of termination and relocation. See James H. Gundlach, Nelson P. Reid, and Alden E. Roberts, "Native American Migration and Relocation," Pacific Sociological Review, No. 21 (1978), pp. 117-27. On the "discarded and forgotten," see American Indian Policy Review Commission, Task Force Ten, Report on Terminated and Non-federally Recognized Tribes (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1976).

135.Alan L. Sokin, The Urban American Indian (Lexington, Massachusetts: Lexinsjs-Books, 1978).

136.The term was coined in the mid-1970s to describe the self-destructive behavior exhibited by the Khmer Rouge regime in Kampuchea (Cambodia) in response to genocide policies earlier extended against that country by the United States. For analysis, see Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman, After the Cataclysm: Postwar Indochina and the Reconstruction of Imperial Ideology (Boston: South End Press, 1979).

137.Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America (New York: Harper and Row, 1966. p. 312.

138."Hitler's concept of concentration camps as well as the practicality of genocide owed much, so he claimed, to his studies of British and United States history. He admired the camps for Boer prisoners in South Africa and for the Indians in the wild West; and often praised to his inner circle the efficiency of America's extermination—by starvation and uneven combat—of the red savages who could not be tamed by captivity." John Toland, Adolf Hitler (New York: Doubleday, 1976), p. 802.

139.Norman Rich, Hitler's War Aims: Ideology, the Nazi State, and the Course of Expansion (New York: W. W. Norton, 1973), p. 8. Rich is relying primarily on the secret but nonetheless official policy position articulated by Hitler during a meeting on November 5, 1937. and recorded by his adjutant, Freidrich Hossbach. The "Hossbach Memorandum" is contained in Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal, Proceedings Documents, Vol. 25 (Nuremberg: 1947-1949), pp. 402-06.

140.  John F. D. Smyth, A Tour of the United States of America (London: Privately Published,

1784), p. 346.

141.Quoted in Reginald Horsman, Race and Manifest Destiny: The Origins of Racial Anglo-Saxonism (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1981), p. 198.

142.See the various quotes in Paul Andrew Hutton, op. cit.

143.Henry E. Fritz, The Movement for Indian Assimilation, 1860-1890 (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1963).

.44. The classic articulation, of course, is Joseph K. Dixon's 1913 The Vanishing Race, recently reprinted by Bonanza Books, New York. An excellent examination of the phenome­non may be found in Stan Steiner's The Vanishing White Man (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1976).

145. Anita Parlow, op. cit. See also Jerry Kammer, The Second Long Walk: The Navajo-Hopi Land Dispute (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1980).

146. Thayer Scudder et al., No Place to Go: Effects of Compulsory Relocation on Navajos Philadelphia: Institute for the Study of Human Issues, 1982).

147.Dagmar Thorpe, Newe Segobia: The Western Shoshone People and Land (Battle Mountain, Nevada: Western Shoshone Sacred Lands Association, 1981). See also Glenn T. Morris, "The Battle for Newe Segobia: The Western Shoshone Land Rights Struggle," in Critical Issues in Native North America, Vol. II, Ward Churchill, ed. (Copenhagen: IWGIA Document 68, 1991), pp. 86-98.

148.Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (85 Stat. 688). See generally M. C. Barry, The Maska Pipeline: The Politics of Oil and Native Land Claims (Bloomington/Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1975); and Thomas R. Berger, Village Journey: The Report of the Alaska Native Review Commission (New York: Hill and Wang, 1985).

149.The plan is known by the title of its sponsoring organization, the North American Water and Power Association (NAWAPA). It is covered in Mark Reisner's Cadillac Desert: The American West and Its Disappearing Water (New York; Viking Press, 1986).

'.50. For analysis, see S. James Anaya, "The Rights of Indigenous Peoples and International Law in Historical and Contemporary Perspective," in American Indian Law: Cases and Materials, Robert N. Clinton, Nell Jessup Newton, and Monroe E. Price, eds. (Charlottes­ville, Virginia: Michie Co., 1991), pp. 1257-269. See also Glenn T. Morris, "International Law and Politics: Toward a Right to Self-Determination for Indigenous Peoples," in The State of Native America, op. cit., pp. 55-86.

151. This includes a rather large array of covenants and conventions pertaining to everything from the binding effect of treaties to the Laws of War. It also includes Ronald Reagan's postulation, advanced in October 1985, that the International Court of Justice holds no authority other than in matters of trade. A detailed examination of U.S. posturing in this regard may be found in Lawrence W. LeBlanc, The United States and the Genocide Convention (Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 1991).


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