Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Protest CN Rail's Support of Colonialism and the SPP

I mentioned in an earlier post that a good solidarity action for people in Montreal who are supportive of indigenous struggle and of the days of action that will be happening on June 29, July 1, and beyond would be to focus on CN Rail because of their recent decision to go out of their way to target with lawsuits activists from the Mohawk Nation who have taken direct action in support of land claims by blocking railway tracks.

Well, it seems that other folks have had the same idea (and, in fact, it tickles me to have heard it rumoured that what I wrote was one factor among many encouraging folks in Montreal to go in this direction).

I received an email with the following announcement and background:

-- Support indigenous struggles for sovereignty, dignity and self-determination on Turtle Island

-- Oppose CN Rail's racism and colonialism

SUNDAY, JULY 1st, 1pm (sharp)
Picket and Demonstration
Montreal Central Train Station
metro Bonaventure
(enter via the metro, or via the street at 895 de la Gauchetière West, between University and Mansfield)

** Meet at the large departures/arrivals sign in the main lobby of the train station. Bring your banners, placards, flags and other symbols of dissent. **

-- We demand that CN Rail drop their racist lawsuit against Mohawk activists at Tyendinaga;
-- We stand in support and solidarity with indigenous struggles for sovereignty and self-determination all over Turtle Island;
-- We denounce CN Rail's role in the corporate North American Competitiveness Council and the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP).

"When justice fails, block the rails!"

CN Rail is a multi-billion dollar company, headquartered in Montreal, whose tracks and installations occupy native lands from ocean-to-ocean.

CN Rail is currently pursuing a multi-million dollar lawsuit against three Mohawk activists from the community of Tyendinaga who were actively involved in the defense of their land. CN is threatening more lawsuits against other indigenous communities and activists who block CN rail lines.

CN Rail and their executives are targeting indigenous community organizers who have effectively brought the issue of land rights violations and native sovereignty to the forefront. In the context of appropriated native territory, which their tracks sit on, CN Rail's actions are colonial and racist.

While CN uses the courts to attack native activists, their CEO -- E. Hunter Harrison -- is a member of the North American Competitiveness Council, a key promoter of the recently formed "Security and Prosperity Partnership" (SPP) between Canada, the United States and Mexico. The SPP continues the imposition of the neo-liberal North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), combined with paranoid "Homeland Security" policies.

The SPP is an attack on all working and oppressed peoples, especially the indigenous peoples of "North America". The SPP leaders -- George Bush, Stephen Harper and Felipe Calderon -- will be meeting later this summer, from August 20-21, in Montebello, Quebec (just 90 minutes from Montreal).

"Canada" is a country built on stolen land and genocide: we come together on July 1, in solidarity with native protests across Turtle Island, as non-natives in opposition to Canadian colonialism and racism. Join us for an anti-colonial anti-Canada Day!

Organized and endorsed by:
Block the Empire-Montreal (BLEM)
Indigenous Peoples Solidarity Movement (IPSM)
No One Is Illegal-Montreal
Tadamon! Montreal
La Pointe Libertaire
and others.

(to add your group endorsement, please contact noii-montreal(at)resist.ca)

INFO: 514-848-7583, noii-montreal(at)resist.ca

If you live in Montreal, please get on out and take part in this action in solidarity with indigenous struggle!

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