A MESSAGE FROM GANIENKEH
INDEPENDENT NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN STATE
NO. 28 NOVEMBER, 1979
STATE USES INDIAN TREATY TO FORCE JURISDICTION
In a letter to a supporter of Indian causes, the secretary to the governor of New York State informed the seeker of justice that "The State of New York was granted jurisdiction over all Indian reservations in the State by an act of the United States Congress. The authority of the Congress to act on this subject is granted both by Federal statute and by the express terms of the Treaty of Canadaiqua. "
Article 7 of the Canadaiqua Treaty of 1794 which provides the procedure to follow in case of "misconduct of individuals" ends with "until the Legislature (or great council) of the United States shall make other equitable provisions for the purpose." They think that the Congressional Act in 1948 giving jurisdiction to New York State on Indian Reservations fulfills the "equitable provisions" clause in the 1794 Treaty. Congress did not have the Treaty in mind when they made the act giving New York State jurisdiction on reservations. They did not ask the other party of the Treaty which is necessary to make an adjustment to any treaty. The other party has to consent to any such jurisdiction.
In Barbara Graymont's book, "IROQUOIS IN THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION", she admits to being astonished when the United States Commissioner refused to allow the Mohawks to read the 1784 Fort Stanwix Treaty which the Mohawks refused to sign. Does anyone sign anything he is not allowed to read? The Indians were told to put the words in their wampum as was their custom. Aaron Hill, War Chief of the Mohawk Nation asked to read the Treaty. There has to be harmful provisions in the Treaty, not to be mentioned in the reading to the Indians who were supposed to be all illiterate. The Treaty was signed by Indians alright, but not one of them was a Chief. Can you blame them? They weren't allowed to read it. Barbara's book ends rather abruptly with the Fort Stanwix Treaty. We can see the objectionable parts of that Treaty, also the 1789 Fort Harmar Treaty and the 1794 Canadaiqua Treaty. As the Mohawks did not sign the two latter Treaties, they must have been refused to read them.
White man's governments always start a treaty by "taking the native nation under their "protection", which is a laugh because they never protected anybody. The Six Nations lost their lands after making those treaties with Uncle Sam. Some protection! England also started treaties that way and they were under the protection of the Iroquois. The Protection clause is objectionable because it degrades the other party of the treaty. It makes them much less than equal. The "agreement" in the Fort Barmar Treaty turned over people accused of murder and robbery, to be tried in the United States Courts also violates the sovereignty of the Six Nations who always tried criminals in their own tribunals and have laws covering such offenses. That "agreement" was surely not read out to the Indians.
One of the objectionable parts of the 1794 Canadaiqua Treaty is the "agreement" to allow all foreigners to use any of the roads and side roads in the Six Nations Territory. That surely would have been objected to had it been read out to the people. The last sentence of Article 7 of the Canadaiqua Treaty which so obviously takes away sovereignty, was surely not read out to the Indian people. As Red Jacket was there, he would have objected. The present day Six Nations people may think our ancestors really agreed to the above objectional clauses because they don't know that the said ancestors were not allowed to read the treaties they signed. The United States made more than 370 Indian treaties. What beauties they must be! Machiavelli, stop laughing! The fact that the United States refused to allow the Indians to read the 1784 Treaty before signing, makes all other Indian treaties suspect. The Indians were led down the garden path. They were eaten alive by paper tigers.From Buffalo, New York LEAH SMOKE SPEAKS:
I have noticed that most people use the words nation and tribe interchangeably. There is a definite distinction between the two words. Obviously, they don't really know what they mean. I would like to make the difference clear. So, here are the definitions of the two words as they appear in the Webster's New World Dictionary, copyright 1967.
Now that we know there is a large difference in these two words, let's use them correctly. By this, I mean that there are Six Nations in the Iroquois Confederacy and they are the Mohawk Nation, Seneca Nation, Onondaga Nation, Cayuga Nation, Oneida Nation and the last to join them was the Tuscaroras. We, the people of the Six Nations, are demanding to be recognized as nations, but the United States government refuses and is denying our rights as Iroquois People, who still to this day follow our own constitution which is the Great Law of Peace or the Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy. Also, the Iroquois Confederacy is what the United States used to base their own constitution on when it was first formed.
The United States is trying desperately to abrogate all Native People's Treaty Rights which means they do not and will not recognize them as nations. To the United States, they are no different from other people in the country. In other words, they are denying us our rights to our own nationality, culture, religion, language and territorial homelands.
My Mohawk brothers and sisters at Ganienkeh Territory are fighting the United States and demanding they respect our rights. The people of Ganienkeh have regained a part of our land by occupying land near Eagle Bay and then negotiated to move to where they are now settled (20 miles from Plattsburgh, New York). They still have to defend their land and uphold the Great Law which they live by.
The treaties that have been made between the Six Nations and the United States is still valid. The treaties and the efforts of others have made it possible for our people to have a place where our culture, history, language, religion or way of life and identity is being preserved and restored. We have all the qualifications of a nation, which we still are and wish to be recognized as such.
Below: Copy of a poster for AKWESASNE originally on a 45 x 45 inch canvas:
In a news interview, a leader of the tribal council proudly said, "We are United States citizens", which means they are legally no longer Indians, but naturalized Americans of Indian descent. If they prefer to be legally white people, what are they doing on an Indian "reservation"?
Akwesasne's traditional people are citizens of the Mohawk Nation of the Six Nations Confederacy, world's first people's republic, the first to devise the national constitution, "the greatest political society ever devised by man"... "I think no institutional achievement of mankind exceeds it in either wisdom or intelligence." (INDIANS OF THE AMERICAS by John Collier).
Paleface brainwashing heap big success. Makes Injuns think it's progress to renounce the greatest for a pale imitation. Make Injuns into imitation paleface. Some paleface good. Help Injun. Others make Injuns into fools, drunks, dope fiends, commit suicide or become tribal councilors and talk nonsense for the rest of their lives.
Uncle Sam did, in the Canadaiqua Treaty of 1794, "engage never to claim any of the land within the Six Nations Territory nor disturb the people of the Six Nations or their Indian friends residing thereon in the free use and enjoyment thereof..." (part of Article 4). The United States is once again violating this Treaty, intruding into private pro-party and disturbing the people of the Six Nations of Akwesasne in the free use and enjoyment of the land; arresting those who protested this new violation of treaty agreements.
Where, oh where, is the white man's famous honor and integrity? Is it nonexistent? Is howling civilization the fate of mankind? Know ye, O Oppressor, that Indians are sick and tied of oppression and shall, henceforth, fight by every means.
MESSAGE FROM GANIENKEH