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WWGD? (What would Geronimo do?)

16 November 2007

Date: Nov 16, 2007 5:54 AM

I wish I was writing under better circumstances, but I must be fast
and direct.

My mother and elders of El Calaboz, since July have been the targets
of numerous threats and harrassments by the Border Patrol, Army Corps
of Engineers, NSA, and the U.S. related to the proposed building of a
fence on their levee.

Since July, they have been the targets of numerous telephone calls,
unexpected and uninvited visits on their lands, informing them that
they will have to relinquish parts of their land grant holdings to the
border fence buildup. The NSA demands that elders give up their lands
to build the levee, and further, that they travel a distance of 3
miles, to go through checkpoints, to walk, recreate, and to farm and
herd goats and cattle, ON THEIR OWN LANDS.

This threat against indigenous people, life ways and lands has been
very very serious and stress inducing to local leaders, such as Dr.
Eloisa Garcia Tamez, who has been in isolation from the larger
indigenous rights community due to the invisibility of indigenous
people of South Texas and Northern Tamaulipas to the larger social
justice conversation regarding the border issues.

However recent events, of the last 5 days cause us to feel that we are
in urgent need of immediate human rights observers in the area,
deployed by all who can help as soon as possible–immediate relief.

My mother informed me, as I got back into cell range out of Redford,
TX, on Monday, November 13, that Army Corps of Engineers, Border
Patrol and National Security Agency teams have been going house to
house, and calling on her personal office phone, her cell phone and in
other venues, tracking down and enclosing upon the people and telling
them that they have no other choice in this matter. They are telling
elders and other vulnerable people that “the wall is going on these
lands whether you like it or not, and you have to sell your land to
the U.S.”

My mother, Eloisa Garcia Tamez, Lipan Apache and descendent of
Chiricahua descent elder, Aniceto Garcia, (passed away) who gave her
traditional indigenous birth welcoming ceremony and the lightning
ceremony, is resisting the occupation firmly. She has already had two
major confrontations with NSA on the telephone since July–one in her
office at the University of Texas at Brownsville, where she is the
Director of a Nursing Program and where she conducts research on diabetes.

She reports that some folks have already signed over their lands, due
to their ongoing state of impoverishement and exploitation in the area
under colonization, corporatism, NAFTA and militarization.

This is an outrage, but more, this is a significant violation of
United Nations Declaration on rights of Indigenous People, recently
ratified and accepted. Furthermore, it is a violation of the United
Nations CERD, Committee on Racism and Discrimination.

My mother is under great stress and crisis, unknowing if the Army
soldiers and the NSA agents will be demanding that she sign documents.
She has firmly told them not to call her anymore, nor to call her at
all hours of the night and day, nor to call on the weekends any further.
She asked them to meet with her in a public space and to tell their
supervisors to come.

They refuse to do so. Instead, they continue to harrass and intimidate.

At this time, due to the great stress the elders are currently under,
communicated to me, because they are being demanded to relinquish
indigenous lands, I feel that I MUST call upon my relatives, friends,
colleagues, associates in Texas, involved in indigenous rights issues,
to come forth and aid us.

Please! Please help indigenous women land title holders! Please do not

My phone number is: 509-595-4445
My office number is: 509-335-7268
Call anytime!

Margo Tamez

(Jumano Apache West Texas-Chihuahua & Lipan Apache South
Texas-Tamaulipas, Apacheria Nuevo Santander Land Grant–Basque Colonia)


2 Comments leave one →
  1. 4 April 2008 11:36 am

    This happens to be the first hit on google for “Ezekiel Hernandez apache” and currently I’m listening to Margo Tamez speak about this very issue.


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