A MESSAGE FROM GANIENKEH
INDEPENDENT NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN STATE
NO. 26 JULY, 1979
TRADITIONALS AND ANTI-TRADITIONALS
A new situation has arisen which should delight anthropologists no end. They know that their governments and holy men have indoctrinated their subjects, the Indians for the past year or so the anti-traditional band council of Caughnawaga has been fooling around with the notion of mixing the best of traditional values with "progressive" European beliefs and ideas. Their band council chief even asked the traditional Mohawk nation to give instruction the Great Law and customs of the storied Six Nations Confederacy. He even urged his band council and followers to join the Long House. It was noted that he didn't offer to lead his followers into joining the Long House.
In turn, the traditionals viewed with suspicion the antics of their adversaries with the European ideas. They had no wishes to be led to disaster as were the James Bay Crees in the matter of the big power development. We received a newsletter put out by the said band council chief. He extolled the traditional system but called down the Caughnawaga traditionals. The word they used in meetings with the band council was used against them in the best European tradition. The Caughnawaga traditionals "Don't do anything for themselves ... they don't do what they say...they're first in line for welfare, medicare, etc." The going-to-be traditional band council shall continue to issue welfare, medicare, even if they criticize those who take them. Perhaps its alright if the new traditionals get welfare, not the old ones.
"The problem right now is that we are not being supported by those people who are interpreting traditional law." The band council falls into the category of "authority independent of the jurisdiction of the Confederacy of the Great Peace." Traditionals who would support such an authority run afoul of Wampum 25 of the Great Law. The band council chief does a lot of interpreting himself in his propaganda blast against the Caughnawaga traditionals. Peace keepers got honorable mention. They are being trained by John Abbott College which must be a police academy. Besides learning other laws they shall enforce Indian law. Lots of laws ahead. Whoever foots the bill at the academy and the salary of this new police force will naturally be the boss. "Interpreters of traditional law" were not the interpreters who devised this new police force. The traditional system of keeping the peace is the function of the War Chief and his men (Warrior Society). Every man in the nation is a member of the Warrior Society and so all the men police each other. They don't need the John Abbott school. It's every man's duty to keep the peace.
While we don't deplore fighting among the white people - after all, they did make Indians fight Indians - we shouldn't get involved. However, the white people struggling with each other in that area of Onkwehonwekeh called by the white man "Quebec", is over our land. An area of it is part of the Ganienkeh Territory. The French Canadians on one side and the other European tribes (English, Irish, Italians, etc.) on the other side, are fighting over our land like cats and dogs.
Some of our Injuns would never have known that the land called America is the land of the Onkwehonwe if we hadn't gone to school and learned how the white race came from Europe and took possession of the land. So, we owe it to white man's school that we know America is rightfully our land. They say they conquered the land. That doesn't hold water. They may have conquered some of the natives after they had become weakened and almost wiped out by the Dark Age diseases brought over from decayed, polluted Europe. Stealing land and calling it a conquest is still a robbery and no one has the right to take any one else's possession away from him. They even took our land in the name of God as if doing that absolves the theft. It's some kind of theory or logic that it is not stealing if you steal for God. And use it for him.
Of course, the white men says the Iroquois territory was conquered from the Algonquins. That's pure or impure propaganda. The Algonquin territory lies east and north of the Iroquois territory, a vast area of land practically all of Canada (Crees speak the Algonquin language) and the north-eastem seaboard of the United States. The white man told all and sundry that the Iroquois were landless. He must have gotten the idea from the tales of the wandering Jews. Told the Algonquins that the Iroquois had overrun and usurped Algonquin territory and at the same time told the Iroquois that it was to their interest to attach the Abenakis (an Algonquin people) who lived next to the Mohawks on the east. The purpose was to start a disastrous war between the big Algonquin nation and the Six Nations Confederacy, making it easier for the Europeans to "conquer" the North American Continent. Both sides refused to bite at the line. Perhaps, by that time, Europeans credibility had already sunk to a first new low, having already bitten off huge chunks of Algonquin lands.
So, now, we Injuns know where our territories are. Mons. Rene Levesque and his French Canadians are mavericks on Red Man's land. According to the latest on the Quebec situation, the much awaited referendum on "sovereignty association" was postponed from this fall to next spring. Much to the annoyance of non-French residents of Quebec Province. Playing cat and mouse, with dominant society playing the mouse for a change. In case some folks are wondering what's this thing called referendum, it's a law passed in the legislature and put out to the people for a vote. If the people return a "No" vote the measure becomes null and void. If the vote is "Yes," the law comes to life and takes effect immediately. The reference is one of the laws borrowed from the Constitution of the Six Nations Confederacy. One of the things slated to take effect is the municipalization of Indian Reservations. Mons. Levesque promised that he would give Indians full citizenship and equal opportunities. The Injuns then become legally French Canadians due Quebec of Indian descent. Legally, they'll no longer be Indians notwithstanding any treaty or statute. If they acquiesce.
Not to acquiesce presents a problem of some magnitude. But it can be done. All it takes is guts, some knowledge of international law and the readiness to resort to every means to stay Onkwehonwe. We were created Onkwehonwe and we shall not insult the Great Power which made us by allowing ourselves to be made into something else. It is up to les Indian to make a public declaration to the world that we shall not be changed into Frenchmen and Frenchwomen. Our nationality is the Ganienkehaga (Mohawk Nation) of the Kanonsonnionwe (Six Nations Confederacy). According to the United Nations in its Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 15 (1), Everyone has the right to a nationality. (2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality. We shall therefore not allow Mons. Levesque to change our nationality.
It is our duty to defend and protect the right of our nation to exist. Every nation has the right to an area of land where it may exercise its government, laws, customs, culture, traditions and society. It is our duty to get this area restored for our nation. It has to be big enough to grow enough food to support the Ganienkehaga who wish to live there. There has to be enough pasture land for beef cattle, dairy cows and horses. There has to be enough hay land to support the animals. There has to be enough timber lands for building materials. The white men shall have to give back some of his ill-gotten lands. If Mons. Levesque refuses to render justice to les Indian then it's the duty of the said les Indians to see to it that something happens to his projected separation from the rest of Canada.
THE SUPER FRENCHMANMESSAGE FROM GANIENKEH
You're the best dam Frenchmen, by gar!
We Canadien Francais sing your praises near and far.
We honor and salute you, Rene Levesque,
O Redeemer and Savior of Quebec!
Ah! what sweet revenge on les Anglais and (shudder) les Iroquois
Long live the great Canadien Francais Parti Quebecois!
You're the best dam Frenchmen! Tell us about Rachelaga,
That we call Paris of America, others call Montreal,
La Societe de Guerrier say it belongs to Ganienkehaga,
Tell us, O Saint, that the Warrior Society can do nothing at all!
O Prophet, the Mohawks (shudder) want their land back!
Do we have to give it back, kalees de tabernak?
You're the best dam Frenchmen we ever had!
Give it to us straight, good or bad.
What can the Warrior Society do?
Tell us (shudder), please do!