Native Leaders Speak Out


"NAJA joins our UNITY: Journalists of Color, In., partners in calling for responsible, balanced coverage of the Arab community during these challenging times. As Native people, we have intimate knowledge of the damage that can be done to a community through uninformed reporting."

Mary Annette Pember, NAJA President

"I call upon the use of all available resources leading to a dialogue in order to build a world based on a common understanding, a fair acknowledgment of the problems that the international community faces, the existence of international law and an institutional framework, and the way the existing -selective and unilateral- hegemonic system affects a peaceful cohabitation."

Rigoberta Menchú Tum, Guatemala

"We support our warriors"

 Cherokee: "a-ni-yo-s-gi do-tsi-gu-s-da-a"  

Lakota: "Nahan Akicita unkitawapi ki Owicikiunyapi kte"

 

Indian Country Today 

"God Bless America" 

 Cherokee: "u-ne-la-nv-hi wi-ga-do-li-gi a-ma a-ye-tli" 

 Lakota: "Wakan Tanka makoce ki la waste kte" 

Indian Country Today 

"I believe previous acts of terrorism have been committed in this country against the indigenous people of this land. If we, as the First Nations, can forgive our history since 1492, everyone else also has the ability to forgive. Forgiveness is the greatest of human challenges. This is my hope for you." 

Henrietta Mann, Southern Cheyenne

 


"Now is the time for people of all races, colors, origins and religions to remember as we move forward, that united we stand, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." 

Antoine "Tony" Incashola, Salish

 

"We look at it this way: there are two separate fights. What went on with the government is between us and the government. It's a fight going on for over 200 years, but it has nothing to do with the fight against terrorism. Our homeland has been attacked. ... After all, we are Americans."

Garry Janis, Oglala Sioux

 

"... I don't know if Apaches saw themselves primarily as Americans before this incident, but we know who we are when we watch those planes crash into that building."

Raymond Endfield, Apache 

 

"It is incumbent upon us that those of us in leadership stand with all nations who abhor criminal attacks against innocent people. Our nation's members proudly support this country in all times of strife."

Acting Chairman Peal Casias, Southern Ute

"The American Indian has only one country to defend, and when you're picked on, the American Indian never turns his back." 

Ernest Childers Muscogee (Creek), Congressional Medal of Honor

 

"We are nearly out of food and money. I may have to borrow money or I may move home. But you only live once and I’m not going to live my life scared.”

Amy Tall Chief, Osage [living in New York]

 

“I am deeply shocked by the events of Sept. 11, 2001. We send our heartfelt sympathy and prayers to the people of this great nation who have been so tragically affected by this senseless act of terrorism. We pledge our support, energy and strength as we join our fellow Americans in the recovery before us and for the inevitable triumph of the greatest nation in the world.”

 Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubb

 

"It is important for us all to see that hatred does not become the order of the day; that fear does not become an excuse for the violation of rights and that we all remember our common humanity. We must be compassionate in our support for the victims, determined in our search for justice and vigilant about the rights of all people."

Amnesty International

 

"All American people must become strong in our own spirit." 

Tom Dostou Wabanaki Tribe

"The men and women of the Navajo Nation have always been among the first who have answered the call to serve the United States in time of need, and we stand ready to do so right now." 
 
President Kelsey Begaye, Navajo Nation

"Our hearts go out to the victims and their families, and we mourn with them the loss of their loved ones. As a people who have historically suffered similar crimes against humanity perpetrated against peaceful Indian villages in the North America, and continuing today against Indian civilians in several countries of North, Central and South America, we nonetheless at this time grieve and join our prayers and spirits with the families of the innocent victims of these acts of violence in New York City, Pennsylvania, and Washington D.C.
Florida AIM

 

"It is up to each of us individually to do what is needed within our own capabilities to move us forward. Only then will we find strength in unity and show the world who we really are. The true first Americans."

Andrew Iron Shell 

 

"It is my understanding that Native Americans in general have donated more than a million dollars to the relief effort to benefit the victims and workers at the devastation in New York...the victim lists are not complete, perhaps some of our own will be listed. We do not know. But we do know that this is a blow against humanity and we as humans must respond to help those in the most immediate need." 

Wes Studi

 

"We at the Oneida Indian Nation have observed this tragedy, and join the world's family of nations now in expressing our sympathies and concerns to you. On behalf of the Oneida Indian Nation and all of our people, we... offer whatever we can assist with health, human service, and disaster relief."

Ray Halbritter, Oneida Representative to Gov. George Pataki 

"It was probably one of the most horrendous crimes against the United States Government that has ever been committed by a foreign nation. I personally consider it an act of war against the entire United States"

Chief John Froman, Peoria Tribe

 

"Even my little children cried and cried, they said they were sick to their stomachs. We are all just shocked right now..."

Chairwoman Tamara Summerfield, Quapaw Tribe

 


"My personal comment about the terrorist activities, this has to be the most cowardly people in the world to strike at children, elders and women, I only hope the United States does not retaliate in the same fashion against innocent people."

Chairman Badger Wahwasuck, Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation

 

"I condemn anybody who did this and anyone who supports them." 

Allen Lawson, Chairman San Pasqual

 

"We're just in shock here because the magnitude was so great. The violence, the suddenness, the cowardice, it's just unbelievable."

Mark Macarro, Chairman Pechanga

 


"We have serious problems in Indian country but I'm not sure we can measure it against the loss of all those lives, tens of thousands of lives. All this to make some kind of international statement. It defies rationality."

Ron Allen, Chairman Jamestown S'kallam

 


"My son has a friend who was flying back from Boston today and we're not sure if he was on that flight. We haven't heard anything from him yet."

Richard Milanovich, Chairman, Agua Caliente

 

"We as a Nation need to pull our resources together to find those responsible and see that justice is served. We must also be prepared to make a stand and show the rest of the world that these kinds of attacks on our people will not be tolerated." 

Richard Stevens / Governor / Passamaquoddy Indian Township 

 

“We at the Cherokee Nation watched in horror as the attack unfolded before our eyes on live television. We are Cherokees, but we are also Americans, and this unprovoked attack both saddens and angers us.”

 Principal Chief Chad Smith 

 

“I agree this is a second Peal Harbor. You look at the parallels there, it is a surprise attack on America.” 

Chief Greg Pyle of the Choctaw Nation

 

"I just know that if enough people stood up at a time and told stories, and we listened, we wouldn't have time for a war."

Sherman Alexie, author

 

" In this time of mourning let us be thankful that we are alive. Let's hold our loved ones even closer and not take life for granted."

Barry L. Dana / Governor / Penobscot Indian Nation 

 

“At times like this, we need to remind ourselves that we live in a dangerous place today. Life is sacred and precious, so take care of yourselves and your loved ones". 

Hopi Chairman Wayne Taylor Jr.

 

"My lips give raise to a great rousing cry to the warriors of the nations, 'Guardians of the Earth, your people need you! For war has been visited upon us -- here on our sacred lands and we must fight for our people and the earth once more.' My blood boils for retribution ... but my soul will always yearn for peace" 

Samuel W. Billison Jr, Navajo Nation.

 

“Violence under any circumstances is unacceptable. When it is conducted in a manner that displays such wanton disregard for human life, then it must be condemned unconditionally.” 

Matthew Coon Come, National Chief, Assembly of First Nations

 

" We also pray for wisdom for our leaders, that they may be strengthened by the resolve of the American people and guided by the Great Spirit as they lead the struggle to recover from this horrific tragedy and deal swiftly with those who caused it." 

Marcia Jones Flowers Eastern Pequot Indians of Connecticut 

 

"The federation also calls on all Metis people in Canada to think about what they could do to assist “those who are suffering because of these desperate attacks. We want to do what we can, including the giving of blood, to assist those in need.”

David Chartrand / President / Manitoba Metis Ferederation 

 

"The Navajo government must continue to operate not only to continue to provide services to the Navajo public but also to show solidarity with the rest of the United States that local governments will not fold to terrorist activities by closing government operations."

Navajo Speaker Ed T. Begay

 

"An attack on America is an attack on Indian Country. I am gratified, but hardly surprised, that so many tribes have quickly offered support to the victims and their loved ones." 

Neal A. McCaleb, Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs

 

"United a people can and do stand successfully against injustice and tyranny. All people of this country must unite as one Tribe of America. All peoples, no matter what race, no matter where their grandfathers were born, must come together and dismiss their differences. To divide is to conquer. To give in to your anger and attack those neighbors who are different than you makes us weaker. We have been attacked as one people. We must approach our response as one people." 

Tatanka Hunkesi, Sioux 

 

"We as a people are still close enough to the Earth Mother to remember our Ancestors words. We still remember the Stories. We are still touched by Spirit in that deep personal way. It is time for us to put aside our own petty differences and to stand united as a People (not only us Natives) but as a world Peoples."

Jim TwoFeathers, Mvscogee

 

"This is caused by the disease of the mind.  This Disease is greed, materialism, anger, hatred, jealousy.  We all have some of this disease because we are disconnected from Mother Earth.  She places the energy of the Creator in us and helps us stay connected to the Creator.There are sacred sites every 100 miles around mother earth.  Many are disrespected - such as Devils Tower with the climbers and Bear Butte. Others have concrete and huge skyscrapers built over them and we cannot hear.  So we are not receiving this energy.  Then we have polluted the earth where we grow our food.  Food's purpose is to nourish our bodies as well as our spirits with Creator's energy.  We are eating food without spirit.  We are drinking water without spirit.  We are consuming hatred.  We don't even pray over our food.  We just eat it like it is ours.  That's greedy.  It is a gift.  These men acted on behalf of what they believe.  They believe the US is greedy and they want to stop it. They are consumed with the disease of the mind.  We all are to some extent.  Learn to listen.  Learn to be still on Mother Earth.  Get priorities in balance.  He also said to make ties and pray every day for the people of this world.  All people."

Arvol Looking Horse

 

"On behalf the American Indian Program at Cornell University, including Akwe:kon Press (Native Americas Journal), we offer our sincere condolences to the families and friends of the victims of the horrible tragedies that unfolded in New York City and Washington, D.C. on September 11 ,2001. Our hearts are saddened by the terrible loss of life. Our prayers and heartfelt thoughts are with all affected. We pray for strength and swift recovery to the many wounded. We pray for justice and peace on Earth."
American Indian Program, Cornell University

 

"There will be many arguments about the hows and whys of the terror perpetuated on September 11. But this is not the time for that. The time is for mourning, for unity as a people who share this country and for indignation against the brutality of an evil deed that can not be forgotten. To the men and women of the country's Armed Forces and other services, including many of our own American Indian peoples, to whom the duty will fall to seek the culprits and manifest a proper justice, we offer our complete support. The moment, the horror of the act, demands nothing less".

Indian Country Today

 

"If ever there was a time for religious tolerance and racial compassion in this country, it is now." 
Jodi Lee Rave, Lincoln Journal Star 

 

"On September 11, 2001, our brave-hearted brothers and sisters walked  into the sunset to meet their relatives in the Spirit World. We hope  the families and friends impacted by these sad events finds comfort  in the memories of their loved ones and the honor they left with the  American people."

The Native American Rights Fund 
'We need to mobilize now and show our support and condolences to those that are suffering. We must act now. We must unite."
Aboriginal Political Action Committee 

 

“These foreign people who did this are from countries that say they like Native Americans. What they... don’t understand is that this happened to us, too. We are part of it and, if it’s war, then we’ll be the first ones to be part of that. There probably were some Indians in the World Trade Center or the Pentagon because Indians are all over this society.”

Jodi Archambault Gillette, Hunkpapa, Oglala & Cheyenne

 

"On the behalf of Leonard Peltier and the entire LPDC we wish to express our heartfelt condolences to all of those who lost loved ones and experienced the deeply traumatic fallout of September 11."
LEONARD PELTIER DEFENSE COMMITTEE


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