It appears that Senator John McCain has been systematically engaged in a "genocide" of sorts against the Navajo (Di'neh) People in his home state of Arizona. In order to further the interest of mining companies (Peabody Western and others) he has sponsored and passed laws to forcibly relocate thousands of Di'neh from their ancestral lands on the reservation that was guaranteed to them by Treaty in the 1870's. In order to do this, he has had the assistance of BIA lawyers who have forged signatures of Di'neh elders (most of whom do not read, write or speak English) on documents supposedly giving permission for their lands and their civil rights to be given away. John McCain has also used the divisive tactic of claiming that the Hopi Tribal Council is empowered to make decisions for the Di'neh (they do not as they are a different tribe).
The United Nations Commission on Human Rights has investigated this situation, found that the US is violating Article 10 of The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: Indigenous peoples shall not be forcibly be removed from their lands or territories. No relocation shall take place without the free and informed consent of the indigenous peoples concerned and after agreement on just and fair compensation and, where possible, with the option of return.
The Commission also pointed the finger of responsibility squarely at John McCain, after investigating the responsibility of many other politicians, including Bill Clinton, John Kerry, and others. When the Commission's final report was issued in 1999, over 200 NGO's joined with the UN in condemnation of the United States over their treatment of the Di'neh.
The Navajo Reservation has been systematically reduced in size since it was first established. The government has pursued a policy of impounding and destroying the Di'neh cattle and sheep herds claiming "overgrazing". This claim is ludicrous in its face since the Di'neh people had been herding sheep on this land for hundreds of years and know very well how to manage their herds for optimum health since they view the sheep as a gift from Mother Earth and caring for the sheep is a form of worship and prayer. Their traditional sheep herds have been reduced about 90%.
Black Mesa, a Navajo religious site, has been completely demolished by Peabody Coal, in an act the Di'neh call "massive surgery to remove the liver of Mother Earth". The coal is washed through troughs to the generation plant over 200 miles away using precious water resources that are irreplaceable. The aquifer under the area is dropping by 4 feet per year. The electricity generated by this plant is used to "light the strip" in Las Vegas while the Di'neh live in shacks with no running water and no electricity. One of McCain's other bills passed through the Arizona State Legislature forbids the Di'neh to build any structures, meanwhile, the blasting at the mines has resulted in the collaps of many homes and ceremonial hogans.
Di'neh people are living right next to uranium mine tailings that are uncovered, and dust from the tailings pile blows everywhere. These tailings are some of the most toxic substances on the planet. A school is also located there and readings are at about 700 rad per minute within just a few feet of the school.
Another radioactive accident occured on lands that were formerly unoccupied - called the largest spill of its type in this country. One year later - this became a forced relocation site. Di'neh children now experience a rate of birth defects twice that of the general population. Within six years of the forced relocation, over 25% of the Di'neh people had died.
It seems that the rest of the world is well aware of our treatment of the "First Americans". But we are not. There has been a huge news blackout - thanks to John McCain and his wealthy cronies and their ownership and control of the news media. So we here in the US don't know what is going on in our name, inside our own borders. And if you don't feel bad for the people, this forced relocation has cost the taxpayers of this country over half a billion dollars. Some pork - all so McCain's cronies in Peabody Coal can rape the land. Land that belongs to the Di'neh.
For more information and video, Vanishing Prayer - Vanishing Prayer. After watching this video, it just made me cry to think about our injustice to fellow human beings on this planet - all in the acquisition of money.
If you would like to help, donations of time, money and other assistance may be made at Black Mesa Indigenous Support http://www.blackmesais.org/.