If someone came to your work and told you, you had to sell the land your house was on what would you do? Taking a stand now with our relatives, may very well save your butt in the future. Read on to learn more and help.
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Margo Tamez recently sent out the following urgent call for support,
explaining that since July, her Mother and Elders of el Calaboz,
Texas, have been the targets of numerous threats and harassments by
the Border Patrol, Army Corps of Engineers, NSA, and the U.S. related
to the proposed building of a fence on their levee.
The NSA, for one, has been specifically demanding that Elders give up
their lands for the levee–telling them that they will have to traveel a
distance of 3 miles to go through checkpoints, to walk, recreate, and
to farm and herd goats and cattle ON THEIR OWN LANDS.
Margo’s mother just informed her that since last Monday the Army Corps
of Engineers, Border Patrol and National Security Agency teams have
been tracking down and enclosing upon the people; telling them that
they have no choice: “the wall is going on these lands whether you
like it or not, and you have to sell your land to the U.S.”
**Margo asks that you Please help the elders and indigenous women land
title holders resist forced occupation in their own lands! As a start,
you can do so by sharing this information to your friends and
(more to follow.)
If you would like to contact Margo for more information, you can email
her at email@example.com
(updates will be posted at
URGENT! From: Margo Tamez
Subject: URGENT! el Calaboz, Lipan Apache Land Title Holders
Threatened by National Guard and Border Patrol in last 72 Hours
I am informing you of recent events in my maternal community of el
Calaboz, Texas, a binational land grant indigenous rancheria of Lipan
Apache, Chiricahua and Basque descent.
I am foregrounding this because I have been asked to submit
documentation through the NGO, the International Indigenous Treaty Council, for the CERD investigation of human rights and indigenous
rights abuses by the U.S. government against my mother community.
The Committee on the Elimination of all forms of Racial Discrimination
(CERD) report to be directed toward the United Nation in March 2008, which will for the first time in over a decade focus on abuses by the United States to oppressed groups.
This year, as a result of the recently approved UN Declaration of
Indigenous Peoples rights, indigenous people have a specific
opportunity to submit documents on behalf of their communities.
I’ll be working hard the next week to complete a draft document, with
evidentiary materials, for review by an international human rights and indigenous rights attorney who recently accompanied me on an
investigatory field trip to my paternal community, Redford, TX, of the Jumano Apache.
I wanted to keep you informed of this progress, and through this
following letter, establish a way to communicate what I’m doing and
how it impacts all my work. See the earlier letter below.
Subject: Emergency in el Calaboz, Lipan Apache & Basque-Indigena North
American Land Title Holders!!!
I wish I was writing under better circumstances, but I must be fast and direct.
My mother and elders of El Calaboz, since July have been the targets
of numerous threats and harassments by the Border Patrol, Army Corps of Engineers, NSA, and the U.S. related to the proposed building of a fence on their levee.
Since July, they have been the targets of numerous telephone calls, unexpected and uninvited visits on their lands, informing them that they will have to relinquish parts of their land grant holdings to the border fence buildup. The NSA demands that elders give up their lands to build the levee, and further, that they travel a distance of 3 miles, to go through checkpoints, to walk, recreate, and to farm and herd goats and cattle, ON THEIR OWN LANDS.
This threat against indigenous people, life ways and lands has been
very very serious and stress inducing to local leaders, such as Dr.
Eloisa Garcia Tamez, who has been in isolation from the larger
indigenous rights community due to the invisibility of indigenous
people of South Texas and Northern Tamaulipas to the larger social
justice conversation regarding the border issues.
However recent events, of the last 5 days cause us to feel that we are
in urgent need of immediate human rights observers in the area,
deployed by all who can help as soon as possible–immediate relief.
My mother informed me, as I got back into cell range out of Redford,
TX, on Monday, November 13, that Army Corps of Engineers, Border
Patrol and National Security Agency teams have been going house to
house, and calling on her personal office phone, her cell phone and in
other venues, tracking down and enclosing upon the people and telling
them that they have no other choice in this matter. They are telling
elders and other vulnerable people that “the wall is going on these
lands whether you like it or not, and you have to sell your land to
My mother, Eloisa Garcia Tamez, Lipan Apache (descendant of Mexican Chiricahua descent elder, Aniceto Garcia, who gave her traditional indigenous birth welcoming ceremony and lightning ceremony), is resisting the forced occupation with firm resistance. She has already had two major confrontations with NSA since July–one in her office at the University of Texas at Brownsville, where she is the Director of a Nursing Program and where she conducts research on diabetes among indigenous people of the MX-US binational region of South Texas and Tamaulipas.
She reports that some land owners in the rancheria area of El Calaboz, La Paloma and El Ranchito, under pressure to sell to the U.S. without
prior and informed consent, have already signed over their lands, due
to their ongoing state of impoverishment and exploitation in the area
under colonization, corporatism, NAFTA and militarization.
This is an outrage, but more, this is a significant violation of
United Nations Declaration on Rights of Indigenous People, recently
ratified and accepted by all UN nations, except the U.S., Canada, and
Australia. Furthermore, it is a violation of the United Nations CERD,
Committee on Elimination of Racism and Racial Discrimination.
My mother is under great stress and crisis, unknowing if the Army
soldiers and the NSA agents will be forcibly demanding that she sign
documents. She reports that they are calling her at all hours, seven
days a week. She has firmly told them not to call her anymore, nor to
call her at all hours of the night and day, nor to call on the weekends any further.She asked them to meet with her in a public space
and to tell their supervisors to come.They refuse to do so. Instead,
they continue to harass and intimidate.
At this time, due to the great stress the elders are currently under,
communicated to me, because they are being demanded under covert
tactics, to relinquish indigenous lands, I feel that I MUST call upon
my relatives, friends, colleagues, especially associates in Texas
within driving distance to the Rio Grande valley region, and involved
in indigenous rights issues, to come forth and aid us.
Please! Please help indigenous women land title holders resisting
forced occupation in their own lands! Please do not hesitate to
forward this to people in your own networks in media, journalism,
social and environmental justice, human rights, indigenous rights
advocacy and public health watch groups!
Margo Tamez firstname.lastname@example.org
Jumano Apache West Texas-Chihuahua Lipan Apache South
Texas-Tamaulipas, Apacheria Nuevo Santander Land Grant–Basque Colonny)