We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Repressing Pipeline Protests

Click here to access this 39:40 minute interview with investigative journalist Will Parrish conducted by Sasha Lilly of KPFA in Berkeley, California. (Note: this is followed by an interesting interview with Cassie Helgerson for the balance of the program.)
The fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline led to a remarkable level of protest and solidarity, bringing together native people from all over North America, as well as their allies.  It also witnessed a remarkable level of repression.  Investigative journalist Will Parrish discusses leaked documents that expose the role of a private security firm TigerSwan, experienced in counterterrorism, and its surveillance and infiltration of protestors. And [at 39:40m] water protector Cassie Standing Bear Helgerson discusses other threats to water in the Great Lakes Region.
I want to direct attention especially to Parrish's examination of the DAPL resistance movement and the methods used by the US police state's repression of the protests. There is much to be learned about the ruling capitalist class's strategies in suppressing any opposition that confronts the interests of their corporations. 

After 9/11 the ruling class put in place many new elements of this oppressive police structure including fusion centers, using private security agencies, and surveillance of social media. These new features were added to the traditional methods our ruling class has used to suppress popular opposition such as manipulation of corporate media to issue reports to keep us in ignorance about the real issues involved, and issuing reports that support the oppressive actions of their police forces.

Also for those who are interested in the police state methods used to against DAPL resistors, I highly recommend a report issued today by Unicorn Riot entitled "DAPL Security Leak Shows Coordinated Surveillance and Repression of Water Protectors". 

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