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Message-Id: <199503100301.VAA20449@info.tamu.edu>
Date: Wed, 8 Mar 1995 06:39:47 -0800
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From: native-l@gnosys.svle.ma.us
Subject: nanews03.010 (part A)
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Original Sender: gars@netcom.com (Gary Night Owl)
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Date: 95/03/06 18:02
From: Suzan Horovitch (a.horovitch@genie.geis.com)
Subj: Aboriginal Defence League

Aboriginal Defence League

By Meegwetch, Brave Star, 6 March 1995

On March 3rd, I spent the day with The People demonstrating on Parliament Hill in Ottawa against the Liberal Government's broken promises to the native people of Canada. The day was sunny but cold with a wind blowing all afternoon. We posted our placards in the snow bank where everyone coming up to the main clock tower would see them, and handed out pamphlets and talked to anyone willing to listen. The Liberal government had been a welcome change for the native people until their record of broken promises became evident.

June 30, 1993, Jean Cretien (now Prime Minister) said that Revenue Canada had wrongly interpreted the Williams taxation decision and that if he came to power, he would not go along with this; BROKEN PROMISE

The Liberal Party of Canada at its convention in Ottawa May 1994 adopted a motion which stated that the party should reverse the Revenue Canada Directive for 1992 which is recognized as flawed interpretation; BROKEN PROMISE Sheila Copps, last summer, was video taped at a Six Nations gathering saying that Indian people paid enough with the land they gave up; they should not have to pay tax; BROKEN PROMISE

Assembly of First Nations (AFN) was the only body with whom Revenue Canada negotiated on off reserve taxation issue—the result, AFN and its affiliates continued their tax exempt off reserve status and everyone else loses; BROKEN PROMISE

In the 1992 Liberal Party Convention, the following was passed .. therefore be it resolved that the federal liberal party categorically rejects the imposition of the GST to the first Nations and their citizens throughout Canada. BROKEN PROMISE

Cretien wrote to Chief Doxtator in 1993 stating: There is , more over the question of the very legitimacy of imposing the GST on Aboriginal and treaty rights... This policy ( GST) has the practical effect of denying a tax exemption guaranteed by the Indian Act... BROKEN PROMISE

Paul Martin in 1991 wrote to Don Mazenkowski, then Minister of finance .. the government must recognize the tax immunity of the First Nations people... I urge you to rectify the present situation and honour the fiduciary responsibility of the Federal government in relation to tax immunity for aboriginal Canadians BROKEN PROMISE

A good number of people were surprised that the issue went beyond the recent taxation decision to the poverty, suicides, and feelings of hopelessness on our reservations. The concept of a defence league to protect Aboriginal people from abuses and termination of our inherent Aboriginal Rights was first talked about at the Summit of Nations following the Ottawa rally on taxation on Oct. 20, 1994. The 300 delegates full endorsed the idea.

It was felt that our Treaty and Aboriginal Rights as First Nations were being diminished or terminated by the constant redefining of our rights through the Indian Act. In effect the Canadian government is attempting to terminate our rights using sham consultations. . .sham because the effectively exclude meaningful participation. The issue of taxation became the lightening rod for the broader issues. The issues are that of respect and protection of our rights as contractually agreed to by the colonizers.

The occupation of Revenue Canada from Dec. 15 , 1994 - Jan. 22, 1995 underscored the urgency to establish the League. It became evident that unless we organized nationally and fought back we would have no rights left to protect. On Jan. 22 the occupiers and supporters of Revenue Rez formalized the Aboriginal Defence League.

The stated purpose of the Aboriginal Defence League is to:

Further information and membership ( $10) on the Aboriginal Defence League can be found by writing them at 20 Carlton St., Suite 126, Toronto, ONT M5B 2H5 or telephoning (416) 591-6995

The people demonstrating on the hill have an ongoing need for the following: food, non-alcoholic beverages (especially hot coffee!), firewood, garbage bags, toilet paper , sheets, blankets, large pots and pans and kitchen utensils, foam mattresses. Donations can be taken directly to Victory ( victoria Island) or obtain more information from: The Stone Angel Institute, 613- 236-7826

Visitors on the hill where they are found each day between noon and 4:30 pm are welcome.