Sunday, February 7, 2016

Leonard Peltier '40 Years in Prison'

'On February 6th, I will have been imprisoned for 40 years! I'm 71 years old and still in a maximum security penitentiary.' -- Leonard Peltier

By Leonard Peltier
International Leonard Peltier Defense Committee
Censored News
February 6, 2016
French translation by Christine Prat at:

Greetings friends, supporters and all Native Peoples.
What can I say that I have not said before? I guess I can start by saying see you later to all of those who have passed in the last year. We Natives don't like to mention their names. We believe that if we speak their names it disrupts their journey. They may loose their way and their spirits wander forever. If too many call out to them, they will try to come back. But their spirits know we are thinking about them, so all I will say is safe journey and I hope to see you soon.
On February 6th, I will have been imprisoned for 40 years! I'm 71 years old and still in a maximum security penitentiary. At my age, I'm not sure I have much time left.
I have earned about 4-5 years good time that no one seems to want to recognize. It doesn't count, I guess? And when I was indicted the average time served on a life sentence before being given parole was 7 years. So that means I've served nearly 6 life sentences and I should have been released on parole a very long time ago. Then there’s mandatory release after serving 30 years. I’m 10 years past that. The government isn't supposed to change the laws to keep you in prison — EXCEPT if you're Leonard Peltier, it seems.
Now, I'm told I'll be kept at USP Coleman I until 2017 when they'll decide if I can go to a medium security facility — or NOT. But, check this out, I have been classified as a medium security prisoner now for at least 15 years, and BOP regulations say elders shall be kept in a less dangerous facility/environment. But NOT if you're Leonard Peltier, I guess.
As you'll remember, the history of my bid for clemency is long. My first app was with Jimmy Carter. He denied it. Ronald Reagan promised President Mikhail Gorbachev that he would release me if the Soviet Union released a prisoner, but Reagan reneged. George H.W. Bush did nothing. The next app was with Bill Clinton. He left office without taking action even though the Pardon Attorney did an 11-month investigation (it usually takes 9 months) and we were told she had recommended clemency. George W. Bush denied that petition in 2009. And in all of the applications for clemency, the FBI has interfered with an executive order. That's illegal as hell!
Today, I'm facing another dilemma — an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). It's the size of an AAA battery. The doctor told me if it bursts, I can bleed to death. It's also close to my spine and I could end up paralyzed. The good news is that it's treatable and the operation has a 96-98 percent success rate. BUT I'm in a max security prison. We don't get sent for treatment until it is terminal.
As President Obama completes the final year of his term, I hope that he will continue to fight to fulfill his promises, and further the progress his Administration has made towards working in partnership with First Peoples. It gives me hope that this President has worked hard to affirm the trust relationship with the Tribal Nations. With YOUR
encouragement, I believe Obama will have the courage and conviction to commute my sentence and send me home to my family.
Looking back on the 40 years of efforts on my behalf, I am overwhelmed and humbled. I would like to say thank you to all the supporters who have believed in me over the years. Some of you have been supporters since the beginning. You made sure I had books to read and commissary funds to buy what I may need to be as comfortable as one can be in this place. You made donations to the defense committee so we could continue fighting for my freedom, too. You all worked hard — are still working hard — to spread the word about what is now being called the most outrageous conviction in U.S. history. There are good-hearted people in this world, and you're among them. I'm sorry I cannot keep up with answering all of your letters. But thanks for the love you have shown me. Without it, I could never have made it this long. I'm sure of it.
I believe that my incarceration, the constitutional violations in my case, and the government misconduct in prosecuting my case are issues far more important than just my life or freedom. I feel that each of you who have fought for my freedom have been a part of the greater struggle of Native Peoples — for Treaty rights, sovereignty, and our very survival. If I should be called home, please don't give up on our struggle.
In the Spirit of Crazy Horse…
Leonard Peltier
USP Coleman I
PO Box 1033
Coleman, FL 33521

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Bad Bear's Photos 'Reno AIM Rally for Leonard Peltier'


Photos today in Reno by Carl 'Bad Bear' Sampson
Western Shoshone
AIM Rally for Leonard Peltier

Thank you to our friend from the Longest Walks, Western Shoshone photojournalist Carl 'Bad Bear' Sampson for today's photos from Reno, Nevada. Now, on Saturday evening in Carson Colony, Nevada, the American Indian Movement is hosting a feast in honor of Leonard Peltier. The film, 'Incident at Oglala,' is being shown now, Saturday evening, Feb. 6, 2016. Thank you to Bad Bear's father Buck Sampson for the news update!

Today Leonard Peltier, 71, has been in prison for 40 years.
Read 'My 40 years in Prison' at Counterpunch

Friday, February 5, 2016

Joanne Shenandoah in need of liver transplant

The Grammy award winning singer is in need of immediate help to save her life

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

We have received sad news that Joanne Shenandoah needs a liver transplant. The Grammy award winner singer with the beautiful voice is in need of immediate help to save her life.
Joanne and her family struggled to preserve the traditional governance of the Clan Mothers at the Oneida Nation in New York. 
However the Shenandoah family was abused by the Oneida politicians. In the end, the casino industry took control. Joanne's tribal rights were removed because she fought for what is right. 
The Oneida Nation in New York, owners of Indian Country Today, still have time to do what is right. 
The Oneida Nation can make this moral restitution to Joanne, her mother Maisie, and their family, and pay for her liver transplant. 
Go Fund Me donation site for Joanne Shenandoah:
Joanne and her husband
Doug George-Kanentiio

From Joanne's Go Fund Me site:
Joanne Shenandoah is a wolf clan member of the Oneida Nation, Haudenosaunee (Six Nations Iroquois) Confederacy. She is the mother of Leah Shenandoah, the wife of Doug George-Kanentiio, the sister of five siblings and the daughter of the late Maisie Shenandoah, Oneida clanmother, and Clifford Shenandoah, an Onondaga chief. She is a composer and performer,  Native American Music Award winner, the co-chair of the US Attorney General's Task Force on Preventing Child Abuse on Indian Territory, has acted in films, written music for documentaries, sang at seven Native American US Presidential inagurations, recorded 17 award winning albums, donated thousands of hours to communities and those in need and taken an active part in combating human rights abuses while becoming an advocate for universal peace. She has represented her people on many commissions and before many forums. She sang at the Vatican to honor St. Kateri of the Mohawks and for his Holiness the Dalai Lama. She was awarded an honorary Ph.D. in music from Syracuse University. She has performed at the Parliament of the World's Religions; whenever asked to use her talents she has responded.  
Joanne contacted a serious abdominal infection this past summer which spread to her liver and resulted in its gradual failure. She has endured 4 long hospital stays and was in an induced coma for two weeks. As a result of the infection her liver is failing and she has been placed on the New York State liver transplant list. She is now subject to infections and pnuemonia while waiting a transplant. The waiting time for a transplant in New York may take a year or more leaving Joanne subject to repeated cycles of illness. The Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida does transplants at a much higher rate than in New York and is willing to take Joanne, meaning the operation and healing period is greatly reduced and she may return to good health. The Clinic requires the total payment to be made at the time of her acceptance into their program and the cost is comparable with other transplant centers. The key is how soon this can be done. The longer Joanne waits the greater the stress on her physical health. She needs to undergo this procedure as soon as possible. The cost for the transplant, prolonged two month stay and all associated procedures is $450,000.00 which goes directly to the Mayo Clinic. Joanne's family and friends are trying to reach this amount through insurance policies, catastrophic resources provided by the Indian Health Service and donations.
Joanne has been a beacon of light and inspiration for Native people everywhere. Her diginity and creativity has inspired and affected e she has met. She has been particulary sensitive to children and women of all backgrounds. A transplant means she can return to performing, to sharing her music and culture around the world. It means she can live. Her family is initiating this effort on behalf of one of North America's most wonderful talents. Their gratitude, and that of Native people everywhere, will be immense.  We cannot allow this light to be diminished.

Listen to her music on her website:

From Joanne Shenandoah's website:

Joanne Shenandoah, Ph.D, is one of America’s most celebrated and critically acclaimed musicians. She is a Grammy Award winner, with over 40 music awards (including a record 13 Native American Music awards) and 17 recordings.  She has captured the hearts of audiences all over the world, from North and South America, South Africa, Europe, Australia and Korea, with praise for her work to promote universal peace. She is a board member of the Hiawatha Institute for Indigenous Knowledge
Joanne and her daughter Leah recorded on the title track “Path to Zero” with Jim Morrison which also included artists, Sting/Bono, Sinead O’Conner, Robert Downey Jr., and others.    
Shenandoah recently performed for His Holiness the Dali Lama and at St. Peter’s at the Vatican in Italy where she performed an original composition for the celebration for the canonization of the first Native American Saint Kateri Tekakwitha both in October 2012.  Shenandoah has performed at prestigious events such as The White House, Carnegie Hall, 5 Presidential Inaugurations, The Vatican - St. Peter's Basillica, Madison Square Garden, Bethlehem Fine Arts Center, Palestine, Crystal Bridges Museum, The NMAI-Smithsonian, The Ordway Theater, Hummingbird Centre, Toronto Skydome, The Parliament of the Worlds Religions, (Africa, Spain and Australia) and Woodstock ‘94.
“Joanne Shenandoah is one of the finest tributes to Native American Music and Culture “ Neil Young."

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Leonard Peltier to receive Frantz Fanon Award in France

Leonard Peltier
Leonard Peltier to be honored with Frantz Fanon Award for Revolutionary Thinking

By Christine Prat
Censored News
English, French and Dutch

PARIS -- The Frantz Fanon Foundation is awarding the Frantz Fanon Prize to Leonard Peltier. The prize, which honors revolutionary thinkers and their service to mankind, will be presented to Lenny Foster, Diné, a member of the American Indian Movement, and an advisor to Peltier. Foster will accept the award on behalf of Peltier, who remains incarcerated in the United States.

The award will be presented by Frantz Fanon’s daughter on March 6, 2016.
Frantz Fanon

The prize was awarded to Peltier based on a proposal from the network, Reseau ‘Sortir du Colonialisme.' The Support Committee for American Indians, CSIA, worked in support of the proposal to recognize Peltier with the award.

Peltier's supporters, pressing for clemency for Peltier, hope the prize will attract the attention of President Obama. Earlier, Obama voiced his admiration for Fanon.

Frantz Fanon, a revolutionary thinker from Martinique, was a psychiatrist and worked in a hospital in Algiers during the Algerian Uprising (1954-1962.) He sided with the Algerians. Fanon's most famous book is ‘The Wretched of the Earth’. He died very young of leukemia before the end of the Algerian War, in 1961. He has always been a major symbol of anti-colonialism and resistance of Indigenous People.

More info on Leonard Peltier:
French translation below by Christine Prat, thank you from Censored News


On February 6, 2016, in Leonard Peltier, by Chris P
6 février 2016 [In English, Zie Nederlandse vertaling]
PosterPeltier40yrsLEONARD PELTIER ENTRE AUJOURD’HUI DANS SA 40ème ANNEE D’INCARCERATION. Il fut accusé d’avoir tué deux agents du FBI, cependant il a été démontré depuis longtemps – et admis par la Justice – qu’il ne pouvait pas être le tireur. Les autorités ont cependant toujours refusé de rouvrir le dossier, prétendant que s’il n’était pas l’auteur des coups de feu, il devait être complice! Aucun Président n’a accepté de le grâcier jusqu’à maintenant.
Il est actuellement très malade et ne reçoit pas les soins nécessaires.
LA FONDATION FRANTZ FANON A DECIDE DE LUI ATTRIBUER LE PRIX FRANTZ FANON CETTE ANNÉE. Le prix sera remis au cours du Salon Anticolonial organisé à la Bellevilloise, dans le cadre de la Semaine Anticoloniale, initiée par le Réseau ‘Sortir du Colonialisme’.
Ce prix peut se révéler très important car les soutiens de Leonard Peltier pensent qu’une grâce de Barak Obama est la dernière chance de faire libérer Leonard, et Obama a dit avoir été très inspiré par Frantz Fanon.
Frantz Fanon est né en 1925 à Fort-de-France, Martinique. Il était psychiatre et a travaillé dans un hôpital d’Alger pendant la guerre d’Algérie. Il devint membre du FLN (Front de Libération Nationale Algérien). Il a toujours soutenu les opprimés et combattu le racisme et le colonialisme. Il mourut en 1961 de leucémie. Depuis, il a toujours été considéré comme un symbole de la lutte contre le colonialisme et l’oppression. Son ouvrage le plus connu est “Les Damnés de la Terre”.
Depuis 2011, la Fondation Frantz Fanon décerne son prix a une personne ayant mené une action exemplaire contre le racisme, la discrimination et la xénophobie, la domination et le colonialisme. Cette année le prix sera décerné le 6 mars au cours du Salon Anticolonial, en présence de la fille de Frantz Fanon. Lenny Foster, Navajo, membre de l’AIM et proche de Leonard Peltier, recevra le prix au nom de Leonard.
Christine Prat

Dutch translation below by Alice Holemans, NAIS, thank you from Censored News!

* Frantz Fanon Foundation prijs voor Leonard Peltier- Parijs

Parijs- De Frantz Fanon Foundation kent de Frantz Fanon prijs toe aan Leonard Peltier.
De prijs die een eerbetoon is aan revolutionaire denkers in dienst van de mensheid, zal op 6 februari 2016, verjaardag van Leonard’ s 40 jarige onrechtmatige opsluiting overhandigt worden aan Lenny Foster, Dine’, lid van de American Indian Movement (AIM), en spirituele raadgever van Peltier.
De prijs zal overhandigd worden door de dochter van Frantz Manon.
Het steuncomité voor Amerikaanse indianen (CSIA) en andere organisaties in Frankrijk hadden de Frantz Fanon Foundation opgeroepen om Peltier te erkennen.
Peltier activisten hopen dat de prijs onder de aandacht van Obama komt. Obama heeft zijn bewondering voor Frantz Fanon vroeger reeds geuit.

Frantz Fanon, een revolutionaire denker uit Martinique, was een psychiater en werkzaam in een hospitaal in Algiers tijdens de Algerijnse opstand (1954-1962.) Hij koos de kant van de Algerijnen. Zijn bekendste boek is “The Wretched of the Earth”.
Hij stierf zeer jong aan de gevolgen van Leukemie, nog voor het einde van de Algerijnse oorlog, in 1961. Hij is altijd een belangrijk symbool geweest van anti- kolonialisme en het verzet van inheemse volken.

-- Christine Prat in France

Copyright Christine Prat, Censored News

Navajo President: "Basketball team's culture attacked in hair takedown"


By Navajo President Russell Begaye
Censored News
French translation by Christine Prat at

FLAGSTAFF-Members of the Flagstaff Lady Eagles basketball team were asked to take their hair down from their traditional tsiiyeeł before a game on Tuesday night at the Flagstaff High School gymnasium.
The Lady Eagles were participating in Native American culture night which was planned by the Lady Eagles Basketball Booster Club and coincided with their game against the Greenway Demons.
The referee who called for the girls to take their hair down cited the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) rulebook regarding 'hair control devices'. The referee questioned whether the hair ties posed concern as a safety hazard. He then called for the girls to take their hair down.
President Russell Begaye said that Navajo people are very enthusiastic in supporting high school sports as many have children who participate. They come from near and far to watch their team's plight, he said.
"I watch quite a number of sporting events including both boys and girls basketball. At many of the games, you'll find girls teams wearing ribbons to support a cause or to show team pride. Our Navajo athletes should never be punished for expressing pride in their culture or who they are."
The President went on to say that referees who officiate games involving Navajo teams should undergo cultural sensitivity education.
"In fact all non-Navajos that are refereeing games in Northern Arizona should be required to take sensitivity training so that this type of blatant discrimination does not happen on the Navajo Nation to our tribal students. This includes border towns."
Flagstaff High School Principal Tony Cullen said he contacted the Regional Director at AIA to dispute the interpretation of the ruling.
"The interpretation of this rule was way off. When I found out about it, I was fuming," he said. "I remember watching the Page High School girls play at the state championships with their hair tied up traditionally."
President Begaye encourages students to continue to have pride in their culture and said that officiating against expressions of cultural pride in a scholastic setting is fundamentally wrong and discriminatory.
President Begaye said he will file a letter of protest addressing this matter with the AIA.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Plagiarizers Privilege: The Death of Journalism

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
Dutch translation by Alice Holemans, NAIS at:

This week many websites seized our content without permission. It only takes a minute to e-mail for permission to use our content. It only takes a minute to be courteous, and to do the right thing. It only takes that minute to abide by copyright law.

With total disregard of the copyright notices on Censored News, many websites seized our content in blatant acts of 'plagiarizers privilege.'

Those stealing our content without simply asking permission include The Free Thought Project and Counter Current News. Of the many who seized our content, not one asked for permission.

The Free Thought Project has refused to comply with two copyright violation notices and continues to profiteer by using our article without permission. The Free Thought Project seized our content for profiteering. It illegally placed our article on a web page with a large amount of advertising to profit from it. The article is 'Navajo water more polluted than Flint's.'

Censored News has no ads, revenues, salaries or grants and forbids the content from being used on web pages with advertising or for commercial purposes. Censored News has published writers for 10 years without pay.

Nativeamericanpress(org) also violated our copyright and used the content for profiteering with advertising.

Meanwhile, in Indian Country, the collapse of journalism began when the casino industry took control of the national news. Plagiarism, rewrites and copy and paste became the standards at Indian Country Today, Indianz and other national 'Native' news websites.

Indian Country Today owners are extremely wealthy. There is no need for the owners to rely on plagiarism. However, in 2006, ten years ago, the newspaper began firing staff reporters, who actually went out on news stories, and began relying on stay-at-home plagiarizers and re-writers. Their scheme was to plagiarize or rewrite others hard work, without ever leaving their homes. They sometimes add a quick phone call to disguise the crime, and often use stolen copyrighted photos to make it appear the reporter was present.

The real crime is that there are hard working reporters and activists who make sacrifices to go out and report the truth. They take the risks, do the work and put in the time. They usually pay for the expensive travel out of their own pockets.

The plagiarizers -- the reporters and their editors -- are sitting home. They are opportunists who seize the content for their paychecks or glory.

These plagiarizers proliferate on Facebook. Facebook is now home to vast media mills stealing content for profit. They seize the content illegally, post it with advertising for profit, or use AdSense for secret revenues.

We are asking our readers to be vanguards of truth and honesty.

Those who sacrifice to report the truth should not be the playthings of the profiteers.

The article that was plagiarized for profit, "Navajo water more polluted than Flint's," was first published at Censored News. I also wrote this expanded article for Narco News, where I am a columnist. The article at Narco News appeared on Google News.
Copyright Censored News

Brenda Norrell has been a news reporter in Indian country for 34 years. During the 18 years that she lived on the Navajo Nation, she was a reporter for Navajo Times and stringer for AP and USA Today. After serving as a longtime staff reporter for Indian Country Today, she was censored and terminated in 2006. Censored News was created as a platform for the voices of grassroots Indigenous Peoples and human rights activists. Now in its 10th year, Censored News has no advertising, salaries, grants or revenues. Norrell has traveled with the Zapatistas through Mexico and provided live coverage, with Govinda from Earthcycles, from Bolivia and across the western United States. The live coverage included the live five-month Long Talk Radio on the Longest Walk 2 northern route across America in 2008. The Leonard Peltier and Boarding School Tribunals in Green Bay, Wisconsin, were also covered live. 

Navajo water contamination more horrific than Flint's

Coal mining, power plants, uranium mines and uranium spills have poisoned the Navajo Nation water

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News copyright

Navajo water has long been contaminated by Peabody Coal mining on Black Mesa, Cold War uranium spills and strewn radioactive tailings.
Recently, the US EPA poisoned the Animas and San Juan Rivers with a gold mine spill. The spill devastated Navajo farmers who depend on the water to irrigate their crops.
Further, the US government knew when it relocated Navajos from Black Mesa to the Sanders, Arizona, area that radiation from the Church Rock, N.M. uranium spill on July 16, 1979, would poison the water when it flowed down the Rio Puerco wash to Navajo Nation and Arizona communities.
Today, tests confirm the radioactivity in the drinking water in the Sanders area.
In the Four Corners region on the Navajo Nation, three dirty coal fired power plants poison the water with runoffs, near Page, Arizona, and Farmington, N.M.
The dirty coal electricity lights up Phoenix, Tucson and other cities. Meanwhile, Navajos suffer from the coal mining and power plant pollution. Many Navajos have no running water and are forced to haul their water long distances.
The media, both in Indian country and the mainstream media, have failed to expose the truth.
The public remains unaware of the extensive pollution and corporate exploitation on the Navajo Nation.

From Robert Seals:

Photo Louise Benally speaking in DC
English, French and Dutch
French translation by Christine Prat
My name is Robert Seals. I have been following the Flint, Michigan water crisis story and wish to shine a light on another water contamination story that is much older and just as horrific as Flint's.

The Navajo Black Mesa water supply has, for decades, been destroyed by Peabody Mining Company. The wells have been drained to make slurry in order to pipeline coal and the remaining water supply is contaminated with uranium which is now leaching into the Colorado river. This is the short version of the little known story that desperately needs to be told. There has been no potable water on the reservation for decades. When a city like Flint is in crisis, everyone gets agitated/involved. However, there is no one talking about the tragic situation that has been taking place on the Navajo Black Mesa and no one is being held accountable for this travesty. The spokesperson for Black Mesa is Louise Benally. She will give you the complete story. (

Here is a brief statement from Louise: "Our water has been impacted since the 1950's on to today. When different minerals were discovered on the Navajo Reservation in the 1940s-1950- through to this day (now 2016), ground water has been used to extract uranium. The ground and surface waters have been used and released back into holding ponds and/or released into the surface waters. Coal Mining on Black Mesa used water to transport coal for 276 miles and continued pumping ground water for pushing Black Mesa Coal to Laughlin, Nevada. Today there are holding ponds that are not monitored at Black Mesa which seep into the run offs/into the surface waterways- headwaters.

There is a lot of contamination on our reservation, in most of the regions- New Lands- Sanders, Arizona. There is no water that is safe for people to drink. In the western agency area, there has been no safe drinking water since the 1950's, after the uranium companies have moved on. Black Mesa water is being pumped for Peabody Coal Company's mining operation. The contamination is currently seeping into the Colorado River."

Thank you immensely for taking the time to further investigate and expose this dire situation.

Sincerely, Robert Seals

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Thanks for reading Censored News for the past 10 years! I've depleted all my funds to keep Censored News going. Please donate to help provide Internet access for Censored News! Censored News has no advertising, grants or sponsors, and depends on reader donations! Thank you! Brenda Norrell, PMB 132, 405 E Wetmore Rd, Ste 117, Tucson, Ariz. 85705

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