National Day of Reconciliation

Statement by New Democratic Leader Jack Layton on the National Day of Reconciliation for Canada’s First Nations

On this day one year ago the Parliament of Canada made an historic apology to First Nations, Inuit and Métis people for their treatment in residential schools. Powerful words were spoken in the House of Commons – and accepted with a generous and open heart by those First Nations who heard them.

Today we renew that spirit of reconciliation, and in that renewal we must reaffirm our commitment to addressing the terrible inequality faced by First Nations communities. An apology is an important first step, but cannot alone reverse one hundred and fifty years of discrimination and neglect.

Thousands of First Nations children are still without schools, clean water, affordable food, good health care and basic housing. Such injustice is a stain on the conscience of all Canadians.

We must provide the funding and support to First Nations for better health care, education and healthy living, coupled with greater recognition of the rights necessary to making critical decisions within the community. We must work harder to value the aboriginal history of Canada and all that First Nations peoples have contributed to our culture.

It was in this spirit that Jean Crowder, the New Democrat critic for First Nations, Inuit and Métis affairs, passed a motion last week – with unanimous consent – that recognised June as National Aboriginal History Month. This is one more step in the process of reconciliation, a step towards ensuring all Canadians celebrate and acknowledge the diverse history of our First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.

On this day, I urge all of you here to find your way to celebrate and honour this month – and to encourage others to do the same.

And while today we renew the spirit of reconciliation, we also recognise that the hard work of ending inequality for First Nations still lies ahead.

This Update from Libby was posted on June 11, 2009

1 Comment

Tyendenaga Mohawks - if we're sorry for the past...

If we're sorry for the past, stop the violence in the present, call off the OPP and the RCMP, and recognize the sovereignty of the Tyendenaga Mohawks on their own land.
MP Davies, please act - this is an urgent matter. We can't apologize for "past racism" when racism by Canada against indigenous nations is ongoing right here right now.
Wendy Naava Smolash
Doctoral Candidate, Simon Fraser University
Commercial Drive resident

See news story:


MNN. June 15, 2009. It was one year since two grandmothers were brutally attacked by CBSA border agents at Akwesasne. One was almost killed by a trauma induced heart attack. We are trying to anticipate the strategy of the colonists.

These corporatist forces recently attacked our brothers in the Amazon rainforest. Helicopters flew overhead and shot and bombed them, massacring over a hundred unarmed untouched natives who still live in the rainforest, cut off from modern life, as their ancestors always did. With only spears for weapons they weren’t a threat. Their bodies were taken away and the blood was quickly cleaned up.

Here, the plan is to create situations where Mohawks are falsely seen as unruly or as terrorists. Prime Minister Stephen Harper wants to declare he has no choice but take control of our “reserves”, put us under third party management, expropriate our communities and hand them over to his corporate backers. He wants to hand over multi billion dollars of real estate to them.

Akwesasne would be turned over to outsiders for resorts, casinos, condos and creating a playground for the elite. Cornwall Island would become part of a NAFTA super highway complex. We would be removed. An American would be able to come into Canada without having to pass through a border checkpoint. Kahnawake would become part of Montreal. Six Nations would become part of surrounding municipalities. Harper has to do this before he gets kicked out of office.

This morning at 6:45 am the OPP came to the Skyway Bridge which the Mohawks of Tyendinaga had never closed down. They slowed down traffic giving out information to support the Mohawks of Akwesasne. The OPP and the band council Mohawk Police shut it down and kept the public off the bridge. A squad of 150 to 200 cruisers and SUVs came in and practically massacred our people. There was blood everywhere, which was quickly mopped by the OPP, using fire hoses to immediately wash down any evidence. 14 were hurt.

The Shiprider Agreement was signed by Canada and US on May 26, 2009 to escalate the North American Union and martial law. All law enforcement, intelligence, military and border patrol come under the Pentagon. RCMP and armed US Coast Guards can enter each others waterway, in particular, the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, which is Haudenosaunee Territory. Obviously, Harper without Parliamentary approval has relinquished sovereignty over the colony of Canada. These executive decisions never went through Parliament or Congress because they say it’s to pursue terrorists and criminals.

NORAD [North American Air Defense] covers air space. Shiprider covers the naval aspect. Land integration is not yet signed.

The combined forces could come in to attack the Mohawks, with the excuse that they are pursuing terrorists. The Nazi in WW II used this same tactic. German soldiers dressed as Polish soldiers blew up railroads in Germany. This justified the Germans attacking Poland. US fascists are doing the same thing.

On June 1, 2009, the Canadian border guards were supposed to start carrying guns. They knew well in advance that the Mohawks would resist. US and Canada blocked the bridges onto the Cornwall Island portion of Akwesasne. We have no choice but to travel by our boats to take our kids to school, go to work and do normal family activities. It’s only a matter of time before the coast guard will start arresting and taking us to holding facilities nearby. No trial. No habeas corpus. No legal rights just like Guantano. It’s martial law because the military is involved.

What threat will the US and Canada make as an excuse to launch this invasion? The US military choppers have been flying over the MNN office and followed a Mohawk woman to Cornwall courthouse yesterday.

NorthCom coordinates this under US Homeland Security at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado. The US took illegal jurisdiction of Great Turtle Island to launch military domination of the world. Canada is central because of resources like ore, oil, uranium, raw materials and water.

Canada has accepted US immigration, anti-terrorist laws, police state, racist policies, ethnic profiling and arbitrary arrests of anti-war activists.

Canada’s Public Safety is part of US Homeland Security. All civilian police, judicial and intelligence structures, militarization of government bodies and agencies are integrated under the Pentagon. US military bases can be built in Canada.

Big Brother Data Bank is operated by Homeland Security, FBI and CIA. They have security, confidential information, tax and medical records, credit card, banking, educational, employment data, travel, internet, email, phone and fax info.

Code Red Alerts from a Canadian municipality could bring in US troops or special forces. The flu panemic has raised the alert level, although there appears to be few victims. CBC stated the natives in the north who don’t travel are dying of this pandemic. Law enforcement and military are being set up to intervene.

Canadian companies support the US initiative. They want lucrative multi million dollar contracts for war reconstruction. Most Canadian weapons producers are affiliates of US defense conglomerates. Big contracts are expected by General Dynamics, Bell Helicoptor Textron, General Motors Defense, CAE, Bombardier, SNC Lavalin Group and others.

The goal of war economies such as Canada, US and Mexico is complete integration in trade, finance and investment, under the control of US corporatist war lords.

Harper desperately needs to push us out of the way while he has power. He wants his multinational supporters to rape our land. The Jay Treaty 1794 cannot be rescinded unless there is a terrorist threat. They created a myth. For some reason a small group of women, children and grandmothers are the emergency! The CBSA border guards are so scared they even interrogated an 18-month baby as a terrorist threat!

Kahentinetha MNN Mohawk Nation News, Go to MNN “BORDER” category for more stories;