Published on Friday, December 21, 2007 by Rapid City Journal (South Dakota)
Lakota Sioux Secede From US, Declare Independence
by Bill Harlan
Means also said his group would file liens on property in parts of South Dakota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming that were illegally homesteaded.
The Web site for the declaration, “Lakota Freedom,” briefly crashed Thursday as wire services picked up the story and the server was overwhelmed, Means said.
Delegation member Phyllis Young said in an online statement: “We are not trying to embarrass the United States. We are here to continue the struggle for our children and grandchildren.” Young was an organizer of Women of All Red Nations.
Other members of the delegation include Rapid City-area activist Duane Martin Sr. and Gary Rowland, a leader of the Chief Big Foot Riders.
Means said anyone could live in the Lakota Nation, tax free, as long as they renounced their U.S. citizenship. The nation would issue drivers licenses and passports, but each community would be independent. “It will be the epitome of individual liberty, with community control,” Means said.
To make his case, Means cited several articles of the U.S. Constitution, the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties and a recent nonbinding U.N. resolution on the rights of indigenous people.
He thinks there will be international pressure. “If the U.S. violates the law, the whole world will know it,” Means said.
Means’ group is based in Porcupine on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
It is not an agency or branch of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. Means ran unsuccessfully for president of the tribe in 2006.
Lakota tribes have long claimed that the U.S. government stole land guaranteed by treaties — especially in western South Dakota. “The Missouri River is ours, and so are the Black Hills,” Means said.
A U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1980 awarded the tribes $122 million as compensation, but the court did not award land. The Lakota have refused the settlement. (As interest accrues, the unclaimed award is approaching $1 billion.)
In the late 1980s, then-Sen. Bill Bradley of New Jersey introduced legislation to return federal land to the tribes, and California millionaire Phil Stevens also tried to win support for a proposal to return the Black Hills to the Lakota.
© 2007 The Rapid City Journal - Contact Bill Harlan at 394-8424 or email@example.com
January 3, 2008
Notice to Those Occupying Lakotah Lands
This Property is Condemned
By RUSSELL MEANS
TO: The United States of America; The States of: Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota and Nebraska; The County and Municipal Governments Operating within the Republic of Lakotah; and All Private Owners of Real Estate within the Republic of Lakotah
Lakotah, through its government, have appointed representatives to withdraw from all the treaties with the United States of America.
Lakotah, through such representatives, have formally withdrawn from all agreements and treaties with the United States of America. The reinstitution of our freedom and independence is found in law.
Lakotah has reclaimed sovereignty as a nation and over its traditional lands.
Despite many years of repeated bad faith on the part of the United States government towards the Lakotah People, the Lakotah hold no animosity toward the American people, most of whom have had no part in the actions of their government. We wish to deal with the American people in good faith and in a win-win manner.
While we have the right to impose liens on all of the real estate in our country, we prefer to come to resolutions with you all with out resorting to such measures. Accordingly, at this time, we are only declaring liens on real estate held by governments foreign to the Republic of Lakotah, but not on real estate held by private parties.
The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States of America and the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties substantiate this freedom.
Lakotah welcomes the opportunity to meet and discuss this matter. We are in the process of scheduling meetings and will issue public invitations. Should you desire input with regard to scheduling these meetings, please contact us at the above.
Russell Means is Chief Facilitator of the Provisional Government of the Republic of Lakotah.
For more information, please visit our new website at http://www.lakotafreedom.com/.
P.O. Box 59