Construction of DAPL Halted by Army Corps of Engineers

Protesters in Davis in mid-November
Protesters in Davis in mid-November

In a major victory for thousands of protesters and Indigenous People, the Department of the Army announced it will not approve an easement that would allow the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline to cross under Lake Oahe in North Dakota, the Army’s Assistant Secretary for Civil Works announced today.

Jo-Ellen Darcy said she based her decision on a need to explore alternate routes for the Dakota Access Pipeline crossing.

In mid-November, the office had announced it was delaying the decision on the easement “to allow for discussions with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe,” whose reservation lies 0.5 miles south of the proposed crossing.

Tribal officials have repeatedly expressed concerns about the risk that a pipeline rupture or spill could pose to its water supply and treaty rights.  They have been joined by thousands of protesters over the last several months, resulting in arrests and complaints about police brutality.

“Although we have had continuing discussion and exchanges of new information with the Standing Rock Sioux and Dakota Access, it’s clear that there’s more work to do,” Ms. Darcy said. “The best way to complete that work responsibly and expeditiously is to explore alternate routes for the pipeline crossing.”

Ms. Darcy said that the consideration of alternative routes would be best accomplished through an Environmental Impact Statement with full public input and analysis.

The 1,172-mile pipeline is being built to carry Bakken oil from North Dakota to an existing oil terminal in Illinois. Most of it is completed, except for a 20-mile section near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation.

In a statement, Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II applauded the news.

We wholeheartedly support the decision of the administration and commend with the utmost gratitude the courage it took on the part of President Obama, the Army Corps, the Department of Justice and the Department of the Interior to take steps to correct the course of history and to do the right thing,” he said.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and all of Indian Country “will be forever grateful to the Obama Administration for this historic decision,” Mr. Archambault added.

But the biggest question is whether this is only a temporary victory.  The President-elect has said, as recently as last week, he supports completing the pipeline.  While the Army looks for alternative routes, the Trump administration could ultimately decide to allow the original route to be completed – though it would likely trigger protests and the threat of violence.

There was no immediate statement issued by the President-elect or his team.

Statement from Earth Day Co-Founder and Former Congressman Pete McCloskey:

Earth Day co-founder and co-author of the 1973 Endangered Species Act

Pete McCloskey was among the first Bay Area environmental lawyers to go to risk arrest at Standing Rock and offer legal assistance to the Havasupai Indians Havasupai Indian Delegation

Statement by Pete McCloskey: “My wife Helen and I drove up to Standing Rock on September 28th to offer the Sioux leaders the pro bono legal assistance of my law firm, Cotchett, Pitre  & McCarthy of Burlingame, California.

“While we were there Indians were arriving from tribes all over the world.  There were two young native girls from Iceland who sang a wonderful song of their tribe.   The next day, my 89th birthday, I told the leaders that ‘this was the happiest day of my life, and it was an honor to be with them.’   (Helen had $1,000 in bills in an envelope to bail me out when I got arrested.”

“But today, December 3rd, may be the most significant event in American history since June 25, 1973, when Congress ordered President Nixon to halt the devastating bombing of Viet Nam, Laos and Cambodia.

“The credit should go to that young Hispanic combat veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan who asked 500 fellow vets to go with him to Standing Rock on Monday, December 5th, the day the Corps of Engineers had announced they would tear down the tents and tepees of the hundreds of Indian tribe, and turn the occupants out into South Dakota’s 20 below zero temperatures and snowstorm.  Over 2,000 vets responded to his request that they form a human wall between the water cannons and rubber bullets of the police and hired security men.

“Blessed be those vets.

“So the Corps will now re-examine the pipeline route and will halt the construction on Monday, December 5th.   There can still be justice for the Indians after 165 years of injustice and broken treaties.”

Statement From Attorney General Loretta Lynch on Police Violence

Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch today released the following video statement after phone calls to Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman David Archambault II, in which she discussed ways to reduce the potential for violence surrounding the Dakota Access Pipeline protests and to begin a dialogue that fosters mutual understanding and public safety:

“As winter begins to take hold in the Great Plains, I want to take a moment to speak to you about the protests surrounding the Dakota Access Pipeline – and about the Justice Department’s ongoing commitment to supporting local law enforcement; to defending constitutionally guaranteed speech; and to maintaining strong and vibrant relationships with American Indians and Alaska Natives.

“For the last several months, the Department of Justice has been monitoring the situation in North Dakota closely, and we remain in close communication with law enforcement officials, tribal representatives, and protesters in an effort to reduce tensions and foster dialogue.  We continue to support the protestors’ constitutional right to free speech, and we expect everyone involved to exercise restraint, to refrain from violence and to express their views peacefully.

“Let me stress that violence is never the answer and that all of us have a responsibility to find common ground around a peaceful resolution where all voices are heard.  Our first concern is the safety of everyone in the area – law enforcement officers, residents and protesters alike.

“To that end, the Department of Justice has offered community policing resources to local law enforcement in North Dakota, and we have made strenuous efforts to open lines of communication and dialogue between law enforcement, tribal leaders and protesters.  This includes the active engagement of the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services – or COPS Office – and the deployment of conciliators from the Community Relations Service to North Dakota.  Those efforts will continue in the days ahead.

“In addition, today, I have directed senior department officials from the Office of Tribal Justice, the COPS Office, the Community Relations Service and the local U.S. Attorney to continue to address concerns that have been raised; to re-deploy to the region as needed; and to help support constitutional law enforcement, prevent violence, and to preserve peace and liberty in the protest area.

“We recognize the strong feelings that exist about the Dakota Access Pipeline – feelings that in many instances arise from the complicated and painful history between the federal government and American Indians.  We will remain committed to working with all stakeholders to enforce the law; to maintain the peace; and to reach a just solution to this challenging situation.”

The Attorney General’s video statement regarding the Dakota Access Pipeline protests can be viewed here.

—David M. Greenwald reporting


About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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129 thoughts on “Construction of DAPL Halted by Army Corps of Engineers”

      1. Barack Palin

        He’s just throwing it to the next administration as he hightails it out of the White House.

        All but 20 miles of the 1172 mile pipeline is finished at a cost of more than $3 billion dollars.  Wasn’t the entire route approved before the project began?

        This would be like Davis approving the Mace Ranch Innovation Park and when it was almost finished a group of local activists decided to block access because of some cause and our city council then decided it needed a new environmental study.


        1. Tia Will


          as he hightails it out of the White House.”

          By “hightails”, I am assuming you mean leaves in a manner compatible with the orderly transfer of power that has occurred with every administration since the beginning of the country ?

          In the local example that you gave, the fault here would not be on the objecting citizens, but rather on the city council and staff had they not done the appropriate analysis prior to beginning the construction. And on this question of whether a proper analysis including environmental impacts was not done prior to initiation of the project, I agree with you that it should have been done, and if it was not, this is on the company and those who did the approval, not the protestors.

          1. Don Shor

            We don’t generally have the White House micromanaging permitting decisions of the Army Corps of Engineers.

        2. South of Davis

          Don wrote:

          > We don’t generally have the White House micromanaging

          > permitting decisions of the Army Corps of Engineers.

          Or the Davis Vanguard updating us on the permitting decisions of the Army Corps of Engineers thousands of miles away…

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            The Council passed a resolution on this issue – there were protests in town on it – therefore it is an issue of local concern.

        3. Barack Palin

          Ha ha, do you really believe that the White House had no input in the decision?

          Excerpts from a WSJ article:

          The advanced stage of the project’s construction made the Obama administration’s move even more unusual, and experts said they believed it could be easily overturned.

          “Clearly this is being directed politically from the administration,” said Brigham McCown, a former top pipeline administrator for the Transportation Department during the George W. Bush administration. “What it says is that even if you have your permits in hand, the government might change the rules on you once construction is almost done.”

          Dave Archambault II, chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, thanked the Obama administration for what he called a historic decision.

          In a statement, Energy Transfer called the Army Corps’ decision “just the latest in a series of overt and transparent political actions by an administration which has abandoned the rule of law in favor of currying favor with a narrow and extreme political constituency.” 




          1. Don Shor

            I believe they did now, yes. I was referring to the comment that it should have happened six months ago. This protest has been very effective. The Obama administration did Trump a huge favor by taking this step. It gives the incoming administration a way out of what was brewing to be a very dangerous confrontation. Trump’s appointees can simply let the pipeline routing move north.
            I don’t think anyone anticipated the protest to grow to the current level. Most seemed to think the protesters would clear out once the North Dakota winter set in. Clearly they were not going to do that, and removing them forcibly was going to be very difficult. I also think it is not a “narrow and extreme political constituency.” Given a choice between a pipeline company and Native Americans, I think public sentiment would have gradually come down on the side of the latter.

        4. Alan Miller

          The Council passed a resolution on this issue – there were protests in town on it – therefore it is an issue of local concern.

          Wow, that’s a stretch.  The City Council passes a resolution on a non-local issue, with no discussion about the repercussions of their decision, and simply by their passing a resolution, the issue “becomes local”?  Just say you are reporting national news.  It isn’t a sin to report national news; it is a sin to fabricate an excuse to justify what local news is.

  1. Marina Kalugin

    OMG>   Thank you everyone.  David for following up and posting about this issue a few days ago.  On FB it was one of the main life death issues on my wall and I kept tagging David for better or worse.

    I am so thankful.

    The tide is finally turning.  We have the 60s all over again, but this time we have ENOUGH folks with some bucks to help out.

    This time the Army Corps of Engineers are on the side of the people and the good….not the money and the evil.

    OMG..  BO finally did something which he promised….wow….and it is because the HRC is gone….

    Trust me folks, the Donald will also protect the lands and the peoples.

    So thankful and grateful  that the light side is now taking over   🙂

    1. Tia Will

      Trust me folks, the Donald will also protect the lands and the peoples.”

      That is an interesting conclusion to come to given that he has publicly come out in favor of the current path of the pipeline.

    2. Barack Palin

      OMG..  BO finally did something which he promised

      What did Obama promise?  To okay a project and let investors pour over $3 billion into the project just to put the brakes on it at the final stages of construction?  Is that what he promised?


      1. MrsW

        The investors risked this scenario, when they chose to divide the whole pipeline into segments, for permitting. It was their strategy to bully everyone “becuase theyd already invested so much money” and they were counting on your response.

        Could have been avoided six months ago? No, could have been avoided by applicants not circumventing the spirit of environmental regulations with this kind of shenanigans that started YEARS ago

        1. Tia Will


          I agree and feel that your comment highlights the need for early collaboration with all shareholders. This is as true on the local as on the national level.

        2. Barack Palin

          The investors risked this scenario, when they chose to divide the whole pipeline into segments, for permitting.

          According to the WSJ article I cited the company claimed they indeed do have the permits already.

          “What it says is that even if you have your permits in hand, the government might change the rules on you once construction is almost done.”


        3. MrsW

          Linear infrastructue projects, like pipelines, powerlines and fiber optic cables, are a challenge to regulate becuase they cross so many local jurisdictions and habitats. Consequently, there are a number of ways to expidite the environmental permitting process since oftentimes environmental effects are similar. This paradigm can be gamed. The pipeline owners gamed the system and they had to think that way from the start, probably 10 or more years ago during planning, design and funding of the whole pipeline.

      2. Marina Kalugin

        na .. to protect the poor and little people, the environment ya know…the stuff he sold out to for a dime….now that HRC is done….he finally did ONE thing he promised….you can google back to the start of the CRASH if ya forgot the promises…I listened, I voted for him after Ron Paul was taken out by the dem election fraud machine…..were you not paying attention?

        after he was elected the crash got worse….and the divide wider   how fast the dems and repubs forget…. jeez…

        and did he care?  nada….why should he….his daughters get private schools nada common core….are you not following along….right class  jeez

  2. Tia Will

    “The best way to complete that work responsibly and expeditiously is to explore alternate routes for the pipeline crossing.”

    My thought is why was this not the considered the right thing to do prior to all the protest ? Is it not clear that an environmental impact study including all feasible alternatives should be performed prior to a construction that may have profound impacts on any population ?


    I do not consider this a “punt” but an action that could have been taken promoted long ago in this dispute.

  3. Tia Will

    Or the Davis Vanguard updating us on the permitting decisions of the Army Corps of Engineers thousands of miles away…”

    While this is true as written, it ignores the fact that there was significant local interest as evidenced in the accompanying photo of local protestors in what has become an issue not only of permitting decisions, but also of freedom of speech, the right to protest, and excessive use of force on protestors……an issue which we have experienced directly on the UCD campus not so long ago.

  4. Chamber Fan

    My view on DAPL: a pipeline is probably the best way to transmit oil.  The location of the oilpipe line probably could have been chosen with more sensitivity.  But in the end, we need the oil and it has to run through someone’s backyard.

    1. Alan Miller

      My view on DAPL: a pipeline is probably the best way to transmit oil.

      Correct.  Hardly perfect, but the DAPL can replace the volume of eight daily oil trains from the Bakken to the Midwest.

    2. Jerry Waszczuk

      Chamber Fan

      Well said . Congrats.  The oil pipeline is just a different freeway build for the different purpose than drives cars . It is a lot more  enviro- friendly  than transporting oil by the  semi -trucks or trains .

    3. Marina Kalugin

      of course  you would think so….and guess what OIL is not even needed… Toyata beats out Tesla to get a clue

      if not for the likes of PGE and Chevron. … the technology alive and well in EU and most more civilized countries would not even be used in this country….

      save for trains…they have a lovely charm….but they do not need oil either… how do I know….I KNOW things…ha ha

      follow the money and get a clue?   nada….learn the truth….

      1. Jerry Waszczuk


        We have long way to go with Tesla , Toyota and others to replace the current energy sources . We see the progress but it just the beginning . As the  example look at UC Davis and the  solar plant which was build on 60 acres and provides only 14 percent needed electricity for the UC  Davis  campus  (at day time only and on sunshine days)

        The oil pipeline should by-pass Indian’s land with reasonable  and acceptable by the tribe  distance .  This is a whole issue .

        1. hpierce

          So… it’s not about threats to water quality, and all about $$?  Nice…

          Principal (and interest), not principle…

          There are engineering solutions to the WQ threat… doesn’t cost that much… double/triple containment with detection for leaks in the vicinity of a water source… done all the time… not rocket science…

        2. Jerry Waszczuk


          Give me  a break  hp. You are an engineer and you know better than me what this  is about .  The environmental law is quite good in this country and no need the tribe protest to halt the project . Tens of high skilled lawyers from both side are involved to make this work and protests is just a mitigation for how much .

        3. Barack Palin


          There are engineering solutions to the WQ threat… doesn’t cost that much… double/triple containment with detection for leaks in the vicinity of a water source… done all the time… not rocket science…

          I’ve read that the tribe has been offered things like you state but they want more:

          Sources privy to the discussions say a number of offers had been made to the tribe, including the installation of water quality sensors, construction of a fresh water storage facility to store water in case of a pipeline leak, and other means of ensuring water quality. The developers also offered to create a rapid response team to respond to environmental accidents, including emergency vehicles provided to Standing Rock Tribal members, according to an email from one source involved in the discussions.
          But what continued to throw a wall up in the discussions was the tribe’s demand to receive a fee for shipping the oil.
          “Even though the pipeline never crosses the Standing Rock Sioux reservation, Energy Transfer Partners has attempted to be a good neighbor by offering water testing and monitoring, as well as significant community support to the tribe,” the source said. “But time and again the tribe rebuffed or ignored the company’s offers demanding, instead, a toll on the crude that passed through the pipeline, an ultimatum that showed the tribe’s true desire — easy money.”
          The company wouldn’t agree to the condition, but offered to pay for infrastructure improvements on the reservation prioritized by the tribe. The company even purchased a 7,600-acre property called the Cannonball Ranch that is adjacent to the reservation, offering it to the tribe as part of a settlement proposal, say sources privy to the talks.

        4. Jerry Waszczuk



          With today technology   oil pipeline could run under the river or lake in the special containment tunnels.  Today tunnel  are build under the cities , water ways with such amazing and safe technology and monitoring devices . Greedy loses twice applies to both sides in the conflict .


          1. Don Shor

            It’s pretty obvious that the ‘sources’ for the Examiner story are from the company. We don’t know the tribe’s side of the story.

        5. Barack Palin

          All we pretty much have seen is the tribe’s side of the story in the mainstream media. I agree though that it would be beneficial to find out if this story is indeed factual as it would go a long way in helping people make up their minds on this issue.

        6. Jerry Waszczuk

          Don Shor

          This is the standard procedure and no need the  tribe’s  explanations because it is the  attorney client privilege to know how much and you never will find out how many millions were offered to cut the deal beside what was disclosed to protect the natural environment.

  5. Chamber Fan

    And yes, of course the Obama administration played a hand in this – it’s silly to think otherwise.  They are betting it will be difficult to change it back – and they’re probably right.

  6. Marina Kalugin

    oh MrsW… how did I already know you are an engineer  🙂  …and yet you are a kind and caring soul… must be because you have the gene that the guys lack?   how nice to cya again   🙂

    mamabear and I are best buds now on FB   come join us….you will have to find ME as I don’t know your name   at least not by this nickname    🙂

  7. Marina Kalugin

    yes, MrsW, and guess what else….those developers are nada different than those who run this town …if anyone thinks any are any different, they have not been participating enough in these posts… of course much of what I share rarely sees the daylight here…..ha ha

    I asked not long ago if anyone knows how to get a complete list of the donors to the city council folks…na da..

    or I missed the answer?   as my mantra for at least the months since the election.. follow the money and class….  did ya know that the first assessment test done on my as a child was that my calling was to be a teacher..  nada….only the gifted students would be tolerable  jeez….

  8. Frankly

    There are 2.5 million miles of oil and gas pipelines already crisscrossing the nation.  Oil by pipeline is 90-times safer than oil by truck, and 25-times safer than oil by train.

    As usually, the tantrums of the left don’t make any rational sense.

      1. Tia Will


        Which is the pipeline that is going to ruin the drinking water ?

        I see that you left out the numerous examples of pipeline leakage that I had posted the last time you put up this map.

        1. Don Shor

          I enjoyed this exchange on the PBS News Hour.

          WILLIAM BRANGHAM: We spoke a few weeks ago with the CEO of the company that is building this pipeline, and he argues that your concerns over a leak into your water supply are overblown. He said, this is going to be brand-new pipeline, state-of-the-art, all safety measures, and that you need not worry as much as you seem to be.

          DAVID ARCHAMBAULT II: And I understand where he’s coming from. And if that’s the case, then why not put it north of Bismarck, North Dakota?


          WILLIAM BRANGHAM: That’s where it was originally going to go.

          DAVID ARCHAMBAULT II: Right. If the safeguards are all there, then it can still go there.

          He will say that it can’t go there because of the population of the community, the environmental impacts, the sacred sites that are there, the wetlands that it has to cross. These are all the same concerns that we have. It’s just that we are a lot — the numbers show that we’re a lot fewer.

          And so if the pipeline — and if there is no worry, if the safeguards are there, then relocate it to that location. That’s OK.

    1. Biddlin

      There is usually a benefit associated with risk in these matters. In this case, the oil in the pipe will not benefit the Sioux nation, so why take the risk?

      1. Frankly

        So no pipeline can cross any reservation of indigenous people?  The benefit is what is provided to the nation.

        This reminds me of the Davis NIMBY people… selfish.

        1. Barack Palin

          According to the Examiner article I posted above the pipeline isn’t going across the Standing Rock Sioux reservation.

          “Even though the pipeline never crosses the Standing Rock Sioux reservation

        2. Tia Will


          Wow ! After stolen land, attempted genocide, confinement on reservations which frequently were too small or otherwise unsuitable to maintain their lifestyle, multiple broken treaties with multiple native nations…. and you refer to the Native Americans as “selfish” !  Wow again !

        3. Don Shor

          The benefit is what is provided to the nation.

          The native Americans are a different nation.

          Salient issues excerpted from the Atlantic article:
          — they were not consulted before the pipeline was approved.  
          —  the pipeline will pass through and likely destroy Native burial sites and sacred places.
          — reviewing DAPL’s survey work, it appears that they did not independently survey this area but relied on a 1985 survey
          —  less than 24 hours after evidence of the new sacred sites were provided to the court, the Dakota Access company began construction on those same exact sites, perhaps destroying many of them forever.
           Altering the status quo while a trial is underway thwarts federal rule of law. 
           Since 1992, one of these rights could be described as the right to be consulted: Whenever a federal agency undertakes or approves a construction project, it must consult with local Native nations or tribes about whether sacred sites or places are nearby. This right must be respected even if the project isn’t near reservation land.
          — federal agencies must approve projects in a “government-to-government” way. A local tribe is not supposed to be hustled in at the end for a rubber stamp, but included throughout the process as a collaborative body.
          It is this right—the right to be consulted—that the Standing Rock Sioux and their legal team assert was infringed. 
          Only near the end of the process, when approval seemed inevitable, did North Dakota state authorities approach the tribe with a couple areas of concern. They did not present plans for the pipeline at the beginning, as government-to-government negotiations should entail.

        4. Jerry Waszczuk

          Wow ! After stolen land, attempted genocide, confinement on reservations which frequently were too small or otherwise unsuitable to maintain their lifestyle, multiple broken treaties with multiple native nations…. and you refer to the Native Americans as “selfish” !  Wow again !


          You love this country as it is  or you hate this country . Simple . If you feel that you live on stolen land  and you feel guilty about than   you should consider  to give away your wealth  and adios.  This how this country was build . Slavery, racial segregation , Indians reservations to protect them from total elimination. This what it is and you will not change this with your meaningless propaganda on DV . What happened in the past on this land is history .

          1. Don Shor

            You love this country as it is or you hate this country . Simple

            “This country” now includes a number of native American lands that are governed autonomously, and which the United States government must treat on a nation-to-nation basis. That’s a big part of the issue here.

        5. Frankly

          Do these native Americans opposing the pipeline not use gas in their cars, oil in their stoves, electricity for their lights?

          I think the Patwin Indians occupied the land that became Davisville.   Are you willing to give yours back to the tribe?

          1. Don Shor

            Do these native Americans opposing the pipeline not use gas in their cars, oil in their stoves, electricity for their lights?

            Doesn’t matter. Of course they do. Are you saying treaties should simply be ignored?

            I think the Patwin Indians occupied the land that became Davisville. Are you willing to give yours back to the tribe?

            I think you’ll find that the lands given “back” to the native Americans have generally not been occupied or in use by others. So your comparison is pointless.

  9. Tia Will

    For those of you that are so very sure that there is no significant threat to the integrity of the tribal water supply because of developer reassurances, I would like to remind you that the citizens of Flint had also been reassured that their water supply was just fine.

    1. Barack Palin

      I would like to remind you that the citizens of Flint had also been reassured that their water supply was just fine.

      Apples and oranges, off topic.  Total different situation, but nice try.

      1. Tia Will


        Respectfully, I do not see water safety issues with reassurances provided by contractors and government as irrelevant nor off topic despite the fact that they do not seem favorable to your laissez faire attitude to the resources of others.

        1. hpierce

          to the resources of others.

          So, who do you feel the resources of the Missouri river, the Mississippi, and the Gulf of Mexico belong to?

          And don’t blame contractors… they are just fulfilling contracts… following the specifications of engineers, owners, regulatory entities…

        2. Barack Palin

          Tia, the drinking water problem in Flint was caused from water travelling through the pipes and leaching lead.  It had nothing to do with the piping of oil.

  10. Misanthrop

    The costs in question aren’t how much they spent it is how much more to re-route. What I find interesting is that they chose to build it downstream from Bismarck but upstream from Indian lands.  If its so safe why did they make this choice? Could be another reason but there is a long history of poor people bearing the brunt of environmental degradation and deprivations.

    1. Jerry Waszczuk


      Environmental engineers , specialists , inspectors , lawyers knows what to do and project has in compliance with state and federal environmental laws and regulations . It is simple to understand .  Millions of dollars is a a stake but environment radicals and militia and tribe activist staging are protests as the  mitigation to get more money and close the deal

        1. Jerry Waszczuk


          Do you  think that is no any different for the  American corporations and banks where they doing business in regards  to the natural environment protection ? If I would  take into consideration my last two employers and their dedication to protect the natural environment (on paper only ) and  I would assume  that  other corporation are not different  than  Dynegy Corporation  and the University of California than your response to my statement is well worded  and  the environmental bills and regulations are  meaningless.

    2. hpierce

      Let’s see…the Missouri river is upstream of the Mississippi, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Atlantic Ocean… all “Indian” resources?

      If there is a real threat, it can be [and should be] dealt with… but a unique province of  ‘indigenous people’?  What does ‘indigenous’ mean, anyhow?  Why, since I was born in California, am I not ‘indigenous’?  Human life did not spring from the ‘americas’… or was all what I was taught/learned just a hoax?

      Will bet the buffalo see as “immigrants’ those some describe as ‘indigenous’… as would redwood trees…

      1. Jerry Waszczuk


        Nobody is saying here that the “indigenous people ” rights should be disregarded or violated . This is not the point here . If they don’t like have the oil pipe going through the their land that it is their right . However if you take a closer look it seems to me that project got ok to be pursued   but it did not work out as anticipated . Otherwise the oil pipe project would never  be brought out and never would be subjected to the  protests.

      2. Tia Will


         Why, since I was born in California, am I not ‘indigenous’? “

        Genuine question that I do not know the answer to. Does this comment mean that you believe that all babies born here should automatically qualify for citizenship since that is the way that your citizenship was established ? I know that I do, but I have no idea what your stance is on this issue.

        1. hpierce

          Will take your question at face value… Many of our early presidents were not born in the USA… but they were born on the continent… native-born?  Indigenous?

          Haven’t fully traced my ancestry, but at a 50% confidence level, our daughter could qualify for the DAR… doubt she’d choose to pursue that…  know that my great-great grandfather and his brother ran a stop on the ‘underground railroad’… does that qualify for indigenous? There were some rumors I heard that somewhere along the way, one of my ancestors married “an Indian”… does that make me indigenous?

          As to “citizenship”… with one exception, I believe and assert that anyone born in the USA (which some hate), or its ‘possessions’ (see Hawaii prior to statehood) is a de facto “citizen” (and I’d also include those conceived in the US, whose parent(s) decided they should be aborted, particularly if it was ‘inconvenient’ for them to live… another topic… I believe viable fetuses should have citizenship rights).

          The exception is one that I’m not sure is real, or an “urban myth”… those who come from foreign parents, arranging to enter the US for the express purpose, late in the pregnancy, just to have the child born here… then returning to their homeland, and later asserting their and/or child’s right to citizenship… one of the flavors of the “anchor baby” concept.  Seen many accounts of folk arranging for that, but not sure if that is real, or just urban myth.

          Think by me sharing my deeply held beliefs, have pretty much pissed off everyone on this blog.  Deal with it. Or, “whatever”…

          But I did honestly answer your question, Tia.  I expect some respect for that.

  11. Biddlin

    @ Jerry Waszczuk

    You are the only one here who is “simple.” I have the right and obligation to seek redress of grievances and point out wrongs  to my countrymen. I love my country enough to put myself in harm’s way to preserve the principles upon which it is founded. I resent the fact that a country, which has provided you with everything and who’s laws and conventions you continually try to pervert to your own benefit at the expense of your employers and coworkers, is simply a tool to you, to be used as a shield for your own improprieties. For you to question the patriotism of anyone else is an outrage.

  12. Jerry Waszczuk

    “This country” now includes a number of native American lands that are governed autonomously, and which the United States government must treat on a nation-to-nation basis. That’s a big part of the issue here.
    Don Shor
    Once a while I am going to Jackson’s Casino and beside that I did learn about native American autonomy from my grandpa long time ago . My grandpa lived in USA before WW I .

  13. Jerry Waszczuk

    When I lived in Poland during the communist era , the communist in their  schools history  books were portraying  the Indians’s reservations as some kind internment camps or concentration camps.  If my grandfather would not lived in USA than I would not knew the true.

  14. Tia Will

    You love this country as it is or you hate this country . Simple”

    Nothing is this simple.Nothing is a matter of pure love or hate.  I love my children as they are, but that does not mean that I “love” or approve of their every action. I loved this country during the Viet Nam War which I thought was a completely unconscionable action which I frequently protested. I loved this country through the Iraq war was while feeling the same. I even love the country now although I have never seen such blatant hatred for others expressed so openly nor encouraged by a political leader. It is entirely possible to feel love for a person or country while still being fully aware of both the good and the bad attributes that are found in them as in every aspect of life.

    From my perspective, the best approach is one of realism with the goal of making improvements where you can starting with oneself and influencing others as much as is possible through discussion and reasoning.

  15. Tia Will

    Do these native Americans opposing the pipeline not use gas in their cars, oil in their stoves, electricity for their lights?”

    Some of them may very well not do not use any of the items listed. This was true of a significant number of inhabitants of the Tohono Ottum reservation at the time that I was working there around thirty years ago.

    1. Jerry Waszczuk


      You are very good person and I share  some  of yours values but you  did not make history which we  are describing here and your guilt about something which you never caused or participated is unnecessary and  futile. I am hoping that you are not inflicting your guilt on your kids and your friends and you  share your pain only on  the DV forum .

  16. Biddlin

    When I was on the Lakota reservation about 5 years ago,  the people had basic electric service, comparable to the rural South-west in the 1930s. Many lived in shacks that our code enforcement officers would simply knock down on with their billy-clubs. A few folks have a pick-us or a “Rez Rocket,” a jalopy frequently unsuitable for public roadways. For the most part they try to grow a little food in truck gardens and raise a few chickens and goats. The marginal, subsistence lifestyle of most reservation Indians is unimaginable to most Davisites. The current battle is about their right to govern themselves and preserve their culture and land for posterity. Something you should indeed understand and respect.

    The genocide of indigenous people in this country is a shameful tale,predating but on an equal scale with the Armenian genocide and the Holocaust. From the day Europeans set foot on Hispanola in 1492, slavery,disease, warfare and ignorance have killed perhaps as many as 100 million native people, although the figure most academics agree on, 12 million, is horrible enough. Well over 500 treaties have been made between the US govt, and sovereign Native American nations and all have been broken by the US, usually when a desirable resource is found on tribal land.

    On the pictured marker, in the Wounded Knee cemetery, along with many others, you will find the name Ghost Horse. I am a brother to Wade Means, of the family of Ghost Horse, himself a gallant warrior who served the USA as an Airborne Ranger, the Lakota as a tribal cop and humankind as a poet, guitarist and luthier.

    “Many of my family, and myself, were also peace officers both on and off the reservation. We love our country and have fought and bled for it many times. Sure there’s a touch of bitterness at times, but overall we are a part of America too. Maybe even more so with our bloodline going back to prehistoric time here. But today I honour my relatives that fought at the Greasy Grass and celebrate their victory. The reservation I come from is the poorest in the entire country. Living conditions there are often far worse that many of the third world countries today that receive billions of dollars in aid. The reservation sees none of that, but we hold our heads high none the less.”                    
    Wade Means, June 25th,  2013

    Hoka Hey, Tobacco Worm!

    1. hpierce

      I agree with ~ 98% of your post… at the end, assuming no old graves are violated, assuming the proper engineering protocols are followed, unless Jerry is right (can’t imagine, but… something about a stopped clock…) and it is all about compensation levels, I see no reason not to proceed, with appropriate ‘mitigations’…

      I, too, appreciate ‘native american culture’, with all its strengths and flaws (like all cultures) … have financially contributed to preserving it, and the children growing up in it… but it appears this is about something else… it is unclear what that may be… I just do not know…

      1. Jerry Waszczuk


        If you are at bargaining table and not only millions of dollars is a stake but also  preservation of the environment and incursion of  sovereign land and believes of ancestors than it is not just simple deal to negotiate . Tribe’s  lawyers are not damn to bend over for nothing  knowing how much money is in play. Oil pipe line with the steady flow is worth  billions of dollars .

        I was one time in the  mediation process and opposite lawyer show me check with significant amount of money and tried to convince me  how much I can get now with out waiting and the court trial  and I walked out from the deal .

        1. hpierce

          Well Jerry, for me, truly sacred lands, protection of true environmental values (rationally determined), and the beliefs of my ancestors/faith, etc., cannot be “bought”… that might be your way, but not mine…

          Putting basic values aside for money might be considered “whoring”… I don’t operate that way… if others choose to, that is their issue… not mine…

        2. hpierce

          Your “bending over” comment is interesting… my door doesn’t swing that way, but make no judgement…

          You reminded me of a quote attributed to Winston Churchill…

          “Churchill: “Madam, would you sleep with me for five million pounds?” Socialite: “My goodness, Mr. Churchill… Well, I suppose… we would have to discuss terms, of course… ”
          Churchill: “Would you sleep with me for five pounds?”
          Socialite: “Mr. Churchill, what kind of woman do you think I am?!” Churchill: “Madam, we’ve already established that. Now we are haggling about the price”

          I don’t believe the ‘indigenous’ folk are coming from that type of view…

    2. Frankly

      Interesting history Biddlin.  I would not have guessed.  For some reason I thought you were a British bloke.

      Humorous story from my wife’s family… sort of.   My mother in-law is something like 20% Choctaw from her paternal lineage… and so my wife is something like 10%.  Her aunt (my wife’s mother’s younger sister’s) assumed she was also 20% and recently had the DNA test completed and found out she is almost 100% Scotch-Irish… the lineage of their mother (maiden name Williamson).  So, Ma Williamson had been messing around behind the back of her 40% Choctaw husband.   Apparently he was a bad man – alcoholic and abusive – and would have beaten her or worse if he had found out.  You would think the Williamson women would have all been angry at the memory of their mother over this revelation… but instead it raised her stock as a woman that might have had some happy flings while enduring a terrible marriage.

      I agree that the US has a pretty rotten history related to the treatment of American Indians.  Maybe if the US has not been so open to immigration and stayed more like Australia we would have preserved more of the lifestyle and culture of our Indigenous people as there would have been abundant unoccupied land.  But there is an incompatibility being the third most populated country in the world… there needs to be give and take cooperation for needed infrastructure.   The “harm” claimed is immaterial and artificial.  I agree with hpeirce… something else is at the root of the conflict.  The tribe must want something more in return.

      1. Biddlin

        “Interesting history Biddlin.  I would not have guessed.  For some reason I thought you were a British bloke.”

        Wade made me his adopted brother some years ago, honoring me with the name. “Watching Crow.” He referred to me more often as “Damned Hippie.”  I am as American as a European can be, with ancestors from both sides of the family arriving in the New World well before the revolutionary war. I was born in Toccoa, GA.  My forebears hail from England and Holland.

      2. hpierce

        To be clear… I have no demonstrable clue as to “the root”… will confess to reacting to others who have postulated that it is all about the $$… I just don’t know, but do opine if it is only about $$, it could be ‘whoring’.  Values are values, and the “root of all evil is the LOVE of money” [one of the most misquoted things]

        1. Jerry Waszczuk


          I disagree with  that it is a”whoring ” .  This is  a chance for better life for whole tribe if price is right . Look and read about tribes which operates casinos . Here is no gambling involved but maybe the deal is a percentage of the revenue from oil sale flowing south .  We don’t know.

        2. hpierce

          Jerry I understand this might be an alien concept to you, but core values are core values… not for sale at any price…

          Not even if you have to give your life to defend those values…but, you have not faced that choice/dilemma, but have benefitted from those that did… got it…

        1. Frankly

          It is human nature.  “more” just gets redefined as to the individual and/or group value proposition.

          In fact, if you could give a NIMBY enough money to satisfy his value proposition he would support the development in his backyard.

        1. Frankly

          . . . you wouldn’t be here.

          Maybe not, but probably.

          Note how those 25 million Aussies got there.

          My people came over very early and started procreating.  They fought in the revolutionary war and the civil war and all wars the US has been involved in.


  17. Biddlin

    “Nobody here is disrespecting indigenous people and their history”

    “. Slavery, racial segregation , Indians reservations to protect them from total elimination.

    ” and tribe activist staging are protests as the  mitigation to get more money and close the deal

    Jerry, you’re full of **it! You have done nothing for this country. You haven’t even acquired eighth grade spelling and grammar proficiency. You are a professional plaintiff by most accounts, including your own. You violate forum rules, flaunt the violations and then claim to be “censored.”. Your professional “plaintiff” status hasn’t worked all that well in court, and I find it acutely offensive here.

    [moderator] Biddlin and Jerry: you two need to stop talking to or at each other.

    1. Jerry Waszczuk


      I  am not hiding my identity  here  like you  under the two different  nickname . People like you are not credible.  You must be a paranoid retired security guard or retired  low rank cop. I can’t find better explanation for your two nicknames . As a proffessional plaintiff  I could lecture you on the First Amendment . One of my cases  is the First Amendment case  against regents and five individuals. Two of  them are  the UCD Executive Directors and three of them are Attorney at Law  with JD degree . This is  not easy task but so far I am handling  it myself without lawyer  and  it still going . You are not chalenge to me at all  .I just have some fun on DV  with guys like you who are plaing oo7 double nicks  super agents.

      Shalom brother


      [moderator] Biddlin and Jerry: you two need to stop talking to or at each other.

      1. Biddlin


        I’m not hiding my identity.

        Google me. BTW, I showed up for work with a smile and great attitude every day. I settled any differences with my bosses through the proper channels and accepted the results of the process. I was never suspended, nor barred from the workplace. I have never sued anyone over anything, never been arrested or suspected of a crime. I have been an immigrant and adopted the culture and practices of my host country, to which I still feel gratitude and deep affection.

        Don, you need to apply the same standards to all. You’ve let this guy  and his Slavic gal pal get away with murder. Take away their carte blanche to libel and practice medicine without a license and there will be no problem.


        1. Alan Miller

          Don, you need to apply the same standards to all. You’ve let this guy  and his Slavic gal pal get away with murder.

          I don’t know that I can blame Don for this.  It’s difficult to sensor what is often unintelligible or merely implied.  I am not altogether certain this is not purposeful.  I suspect “this guy and his Slavic gal pal” actually can spell and string a sensible thought or sentence together, but if you type really fast it’s so imperceptible what is actaully being said that you can’t be censored.

    1. hpierce

      Then, we are at peace… whether we agree or not… best to you and yours…

      But you did not answer whether I am “indigenous”… but you need not, if you choose not to reply to that question…

  18. Tia Will

    Nobody here is disrespecting indigenous people and their history”

    I am not so sure. Although I doubt that this was what anyone had in mind, I found the accusation that Native Americans attempting to protect their sacred places and resources as being “selfish” certainly could have been interpreted as “disrespectful”.

    1. Jerry Waszczuk


      Maybe it should be  differently worded but I believe that it was not deliberate statement to offend Native Americans . It was in the  context with oil pipeline  war .

        1. hpierce

          Have come to the conclusion that leeches can’t let go… you and I [Biddlin] should discipline ourselves to ignore some posters… not sure how good I can be on that… I do not expect that you should be better… it is what it is…

    1. hpierce

      No…my “better angels” were calling to me when I wrote that… they are sleeping now…

      Toxic is toxic… no question…

      Have a good evening… [loved the referents!]

  19. Tia Will


    n fact, if you could give a NIMBY enough money to satisfy his value proposition he would support the development in his backyard.”

    No Frankly. This is your opinion. Not fact. Not everyone has money ( regardless of amount) as their highest value or aspiration. For some, there literally is not “enough money in the world” to buy out “his backyard” no matter what he perceives that to be.


    1. Jerry Waszczuk


      This is not about buying the backyard . This is about the property leasing . If sign stated clearly “No Trespassing “than we never should hear about this oil pipe line .  I read a quite few articles  about and what I understood that the tribe is looking for  a bigger cut in revenue in form of  fee from  the oil being ship through their sovereign land . Something like toll fee bridge . The corporations and bank which financing the project did not want such deal .

  20. Frankly

    Clearly the interest from many liberals here is less about the “harm” done to the tribe, and more about their global warming obsession.  It isn’t that they dislike oil pipelines per se… it is that they don’t like oil in any form.  Their standard (and irritating) method is to protest and attempt to force scarcity to stop economic progress… ironically to fill their tank with warm and fuzzy feelings of social “progress”.

    Even the native Americans are complaining about the liberal activists “camping out and acting weird.”

    1. Alan Miller

      The issue is they are going into a native protest site and playing their guitars and whooping it up like it’s a festival like Burning Man.  Basically not listening and being disrespectful.

  21. Frankly

    In case you needed to know why…

    • This isn’t about tribal rights or protecting cultural resources. The pipeline does not cross any land owned by the Standing Rock Sioux. The land under discussion belongs to private owners and the federal government. To suggest that the Standing Rock tribe has the legal ability to block the pipeline is to turn America’s property rights upside down.

    • Two federal courts have rejected claims that the tribe wasn’t consulted. The project’s developer and the Army Corps made dozens of overtures to the Standing Rock Sioux over more than two years. Often these attempts were ignored or rejected, with the message that the tribe would only accept termination of the project.

    • Other tribes and parties did participate in the process. More than 50 tribes were consulted, and their concerns resulted in 140 adjustments to the pipeline’s route. The project’s developer and the Army Corps were clearly concerned about protecting tribal artifacts and cultural sites. Any claim otherwise is unsupported by the record. The pipeline’s route was also studied—and ultimately supported—by the North Dakota Public Service Commission (on which I formerly served), the State Historic Preservation Office, and multiple independent archaeologists.

    • This isn’t about water protection. Years before the pipeline was announced, the tribe was working with the Bureau of Reclamation and the Army Corps to relocate its drinking-water intake. The new site sits roughly 70 miles downstream of where the pipeline is slated to cross the Missouri River. Notably, the new intake, according to the Bureau of Reclamation, will be 1.6 miles downstream of an elevated railroad bridge that carries tanker cars carrying crude oil.

    Further, the pipeline will be installed about 100 feet below the riverbed. Automatic shut-off valves will be employed on either side of the river, and the pipeline will be constructed to exceed many federal safety requirements.

    Other pipelines carrying oil, gas and refined products already cross the Missouri River at least a dozen times upstream of the tribe’s intake. The corridor where the Dakota Access Pipeline will run is directly adjacent to another pipeline, which carries natural gas under the riverbed, as well as an overhead electric transmission line. This site was chosen because it is largely a brownfield area that was disturbed long ago by previous infrastructure.

    This isn’t about the climate. The oil that will be shipped through the pipeline is already being produced. But right now it is transported in more carbon-intensive ways, such as by railroad or long-haul tanker truck. So trying to thwart the pipeline to reduce greenhouse gas could have the opposite effect.

    So what is the pipeline dispute really about? Political expediency in a White House that does not see itself as being bound by the rule of law. The Obama administration has decided to build a political legacy rather than lead the country. It is facilitating an illegal occupation that has grown wildly out of control. That the economy depends on a consistent and predictable permitting regime seems never to have crossed the president’s mind.

    There is no doubt that Native American communities have historically suffered at the hands of the federal government. But to litigate that history on the back of a legally permitted river crossing is absurd. The Obama administration should enforce the law, release the easement and conclude this dangerous standoff.

        1. Don Shor

          Paragraph 1: he’s not a lawyer.
          Paragraph 2: I have no idea if his interpretation of events is accurate.
          Paragraph 3: partially true, but not completely so, according to what I’ve read elsewhere.
          Paragraphs 4, 5, 6: his opinion. But if the pipeline is that safe, as the tribal leaders have said: it can go north of Bismarck.
          Paragraph 7: duh.
          Paragraph 8: his opinion, but the White House has certainly not been taking a leadership role in these events. They’ve been largely reactive.
          Paragraph 9: his conclusion is largely determined, IMO, by his close ties and sympathies to the oil and gas industries.

          1. Don Shor

            They’re mostly opinions, which aren’t generally characterized as true or false.
            If I was looking for a balanced analysis of the situation in North Dakota, I wouldn’t go to the industry-beholden Congressman from the region.

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