Friday, February 29, 2008

The Eagle and The Condor Unite: Reports from Natives from the North and the South

The Eagle and The Condor Unite: Reports from Natives from the North and the South
by Mari Villaluna (Poor Magazine)
and Joaquin Cienfuegos (Cop Watch LA GC and Revolutionary Autonomous Communities)

"The cops are at DQU!" the text message showed up on my phone just before I was about to continue walking on the Longest Walk 2. There I stood standing on the Longest Walk 2. I have been walking for the next seven generations, for my descendants. I pray for them with every step I take. On February 22, 2008 at 12:18 p.m. Yolo County Sheriffs arrested three DQU students with alleged charges of trespassing and served with an eviction notice. Students have occupied DQU since January of 2005, demanding the re-opening of DQU and maintaining classes every semester. In my prayers, I pray the hardest for the students who are left occupying D-Q University, which is the only off-reservation Indigenous university in the U.S. It was founded by Natives and Chicanos to reflect an Indigenous education that covered all of the Americas. In 2005, the university lost it's accreditation after the former administration mishandled school funds. The night before, some DQU students arrived to participate in the longest walk. That same night I met a journalist from L.A. named Joaquin Cienfuegos and we talked about D-Q University and the Longest Walk 2 and how they are interconnected. We talked about the importance of collaborating on media, and how not that often you see the North and South Natives coming together on a media tip. That night I knew it was important for him to interview Caske Limon, a DQU Student so Joaquin could understand the spiritual importance of DQU and its connections to the Longest Walk 2. "It's important because it's unique. It highly stresses culture and traditions. It has more hands-on learning experience and environment" said Caske Limon, DQU Student. "It's a place for healing. It's a very sacred place. The name of the school itself was brought to the school by means of ceremony. They used to hold the AIM Sundance at the DQ University back in the day" he continued. Caske continued to talk to Joaquin about how D-Q University has been as a used as a model for self determination and sovereignty for Native people. "It's creating a prototype, a microcosm, of a better society. It's giving a visual example of not polluting healthy life and eliminating diseases by eating healthy" he said. "We want to revert back to the structure of how indigenous societies used to work." DQU is very sacred to the students who are currently occupying it so much so that three of them recently got arrested because they believe in D-Q University. They believe in the vision of North and South Natives coming together to learn as their ancestors once did, without borders but having a epistemic location in a Indigenous traditional identity. I was lucky enough to have a conversation with an elder named Dr. Adam Fournate Eagle, who was one of the Natives to jump over the fence to reposses the former Army Communications center and started a tribal college called D-Q University. He talked about Alcatraz Island, DQU, Longest Walk of 1978, sacred sites, and cracked jokes the whole time. The words that I remember the most is "Its up to the youth to continue the struggles that we once fought for." Those youth at D-Q University are making sure that the next seven generations have an Indigenous University that uses our ways of educating our people.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Eagle and Condor Unite for Revolution and Freedom: Reports and Experiences from the Longest Walk II and DQ University

Eagle and Condor Unite for Revolution and Freedom:


Reports and Experiences from the Longest Walk II and DQ University

-Joaquin Cienfuegos

(Member of Cop Watch LA – GC and Revolutionary Autonomous Communities)


Brothers and Sisters asked to help spread the word and help spread the message and personal experiences of indigenous people from the South and the North participating in the Longest Walk and at DQ University. I’m sending out this correspondence in that spirit.

All power through the people.

This was sent out by the recently formed DQU Student Defense Committee

youtube video:

February 20, 2008

DQU UPDATE !CHRIS, DAN AND MANUEL ARE ALL BACK AT DQU. There are many Native organizations, activists, advocates, supporters and Nationally known Indian Country leaders at DQU to welcome them back.

At 12:18 PST, Yolo County Sheriff's Department arrested three student leaders at DQ University. The students were served with an eviction notice and arrested under allegations of trespassing, at the request of the DQU Board of Regents. The students have occupied DQU since the close of the college in January 2005, working diligently with volunteers and supporters to secure accreditation and reopen DQU. DQ University is the ONLY Tribal University in the United States located off reservation lands.
Just one week ago, the Longest Walk 2 began its historic journey from DQ University, home of the Longest Walk. The Longest Walk 2 has pledged its support of DQU and the students there, recognizing the value and significance of Tribal Education and the history of DQ University.
Yolo County Sheriff's Dept. has informed us that all three are being booked, processed and will be cited with a notice to appear. They should be released later this afternoon.
"With this untimely event, we are now forming the DQU STUDENT DEFENSE COMMITTEE. We are seeking legal services from trained professionals and donations of money for qualified legal counsel. After hearing of this untimely event with these unwarranted and shocking allegations, this just shows the Indian world that the board of DQU is not interested in having any student body at DQU. This is a perfect example of why no one wants to work with this board. Four long years and no accreditation. Why ?" stated Quanah Parker Brightman.
For more information:
Chris Yazzie
530-554-8377 email
Lupita Torres
Quanah Parker Brightman

The students from DQ are asking for support and for people to go down there. Anyone is welcome, from teachers willing to teach to students willing to learn.


Amber, who is a student at DQ was praying when 5 sheriffs came up to the students and told them they had 5 minutes to leave and started arresting people.

They arrested three students: Chris Yazzie (a Dineh brother), Manuel and Daniel who are Chicano.

“We’re out here and we’re fighting for the only tribal and Chicano university in California,” Amber told me.

DQ University: North and South Indigenous unity. The Eagle and the Condor Unite!

Interview with Caske a Lakota DQ University Student

JC: Can you explain the history of DQ for people?

Caske: DQ University was founded in 1971 by a group of Xicano students from UC Davis MECHA [Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/o de Aztlan] and members from the American Indian Movement.

The Fort Laramie Treaty states: ‘Any surplus land that’s not being used by the american government will go back to the native peoples.’ Due to this treaty AIM [American Indian Movement] jumped the fence of an abandoned military communications base.

They proposed to establish a school for traditional cultural education. The occupation of Alcatraz by AIM happened before DQ University. DQ means Deganaweah (which comes from the Iroquois known as the peace keeper and his name can only be said in ceremony) and Quetzalcoatl. It symbolizes the unification of the natives from the North and the South. It also speaks to the prophecy of the 7th generation, which says that the 7th generation will rise up, unite the eagle and the condor, to fulfill the prophecy.

DQ was the central location for the original Longest Walk. Dennis Banks coordinated the walk from DQ.

JC: What is some of the recent history and events?

Caske: Three years ago people found out that the university’s Board of Trustees was embezzling money, filling out grand and financial aid and were keeping the money. The school lost accreditation due to the debt. For the past three years the university has been unaccredited but hasn’t ceased to be an educational base area. My grandfather Darryl Standing Elk does sweats at the university to bring that culture. There are also permaculture classes, drum classes, mural classes, and a different variety of classes and its been going on for the fourth year of us occupying and taking care of the land at DQ.

JC: Can you speak to people upholding native identity in the North and the South?

Caske: If you’re Brown and your people came from Turtle Island, than you’re indigenous to this land. They’ve created a wall, a border, just like they did in Berlin; to divide and weaken us. We are all native. Respect each other; see each other as brother and sister. We used to trade all up and down this continent.

JC: How can people connect with and support DQ?

Caske: People can support by going out to DQ and spend some time at the garden and the people there. There’s a diverse group of people with the same vision about how we should be living, as environmentally friendly as possible. We stress alternative energies, organic farming without using pesticides and poisons. We’re trying to get a program up and running on the internet so people can take on-line classes. So even if you’re 300 miles away you can learn.

We’re putting up all the board meetings up on YouTube because a lot of people don’t know what is going on at theses meetings. The outcome has been that the board ended up canceling the meetings; they assaulted a student and threatened to call the police.

JC: Are they the same members who stole the money?

Caske: They are relatives to them. The relatives are trying to cover up for their family. Five people were voted in by the students, but two members but two old members weren’t taken out of the board. They voted in people who had similar agendas as them. As of right now there only 6 members in the board, but there are supposed to be 16. There are supposed to be 9 federally recognized natives and 7 that are not federally recognized.

JC: Can you explain the significance and the importance of having a tribal college?

Caske: It’s important because it’s unique. It highly stresses culture and traditions. It has more hands-on learning experience and environment. It’s a place for healing. It’s a very sacred place. The name of the school itself was brought to the school by means of ceremony. They used to hold the AIM sundance at the DQ University back in the day.

JC: What is the role of a university like DQ in creating a revolutionary movement and getting rid of the system of colonialism, imperialism, capitalism, patriarchy and white supremacy?

Caske: It’s creating a prototype, a microcosm, of a better society. It’s giving a visual example of not polluting healthy life and eliminating diseases by eating healthy. A lot of native people suffer from diabetes and blood diseases; this could be ended just by eating healthier. We want to revert back to the structure of how indigenous societies used to work. For the most part they were ran by the elders, because they have lived a long life and seen things that youth haven’t. That makes them the only people with the ability to make responsible decisions.

JC: What do you think the role is for the youth in the movement?

Caske: The students are the workhorse, and the elder is the one that is guiding the horse, in terms of what needs to be improved in the community. Most problems occur when there’s miscommunication between the people, and that needs to be improved.

Interview with Phillip Mi-She-Kae (Turtle) a supporter of DQ and member of the Turtle Island Peacekeepers

“Compromise is what the predator always recommends, so we are Native not American, no matter who it offends.”

“I’m a member of Turtle Island Peacekeepers. Our purpose is to inspire solidarity between the Hood and Rez Natives. We might speak a language that is colonial, Spanish or English, but we’re native. It’s a slow process of Rez Natives accepting Mexicans and other Natives in the South. We feel that all sites are sacred. We also feel that self-defense is important. The 7th generation is not waiting around anymore. We’re an evolutionary warrior society. We’re going to stay small and stay focused. Cop Watch LA is part of this too because of the work that you do. All these people come to DQ, the Non-Profit Industrial Complex and Religious groups, they don’t come for ceremony, they come for money. We do music, activism, and ceremony. We believe that all camps have to come together and move. Eventually we’re going to sing the same song. We don’t come to put down our agendas, we come to learn. Half of us at DQ want a survival school: bows, running, story-telling. The other half want accreditation, they are weekend warriors, lets go away from this. After the Long Walk II left there were helicopters and Feds coming over to the school. In the crooked board there are two members who are BIA (Bureau of Indian Affairs). The BIA is the Indian version of the FBI, CIA, and cavalry. We carry the peacemakers prophecy, ‘D.’ He wasn’t Iroquois, he was Otchipwe. He had a vision of the white man going through the Six Nations. The Potowatomi (Keepers of the Fire), Otchipwe, Otawa are called the Three Fires – Anishnaabe Nation. Caske is Lakota, and our people’s used to war, by us rolling together we have broke through the division that the white man brought.

Cho-Qosh-Auh-Ho-Oh a Chumash Yaqui Elder Woman said, ‘The 11th hour isn’t coming, it’s already here, so we have to tend our gardens, we have to be good to our brothers and sisters.’”

JC: Can you speak to the importance of building alliances?

M: “We need to come together because the dark forces are coming together. The INFRA-Guard is a private intelligence surveillance agency. During Marshall Law they will kill anybody who resists. They are connected to Black Water (Bush’s private army). We can’t smoke the peace pipe with them until they strip themselves of their secret. All of them are our oppressors, the police are our oppressors.”

“An elder said, ‘Just as much light comes towards us, darkness comes towards us, but it’s not good or bad. In the balance that’s where the medicine is.’”

The Turtle Island Peace Keepers will be releasing a Benefit CD/DVD soon titled “They Bloodied Our Hands and Wounded Our Knees” with Savage Family, El Vuh, John Trudell, Annie Humphrey, Floyd “Red Crow” Westerman, Buggin Malone and others

Reports from the Longest Walk II the Northern Route

Interview with Mari Villaluna DQ Student and Media Coordinator of the Longest Walk II Northern Route -- “Urban Iroquois Indigena”

JC: Please start with some of your experiences in the Longest Walk so far and why you decided to participate.

Mari: I’ve been working on this for one year. I was in DC when Morning Star the California State Coordinator told me about it. Some people say that Dennis Banks had been planning this walk since he participated in the 1994 Walk for Justice. I’m participating in the walk because of the Iroquois prophecy. We’re always supposed to think 7 Generations to the future and 7 Generations in the past. Everything I do is going to affect 7 generations in the future. The only religions not recognized in the U.S. are Native religions. Our sacred sites, and what we view as church is not honored. The Washoe here in Carson City view the Truckee River and Cave Rock as sacred places. Lake Tahoe is believed to be the center of the universe for the Washoe and it’s getting polluted. That’s their creation story and it’s being destroyed.

I really believe in the message of the walk: ‘All life is sacred, Protect Mother Earth.’

The times are scary. If we don’t protect this land, what is going to happen? My future generations won’t even have water to drink.

I wanted to learn from other indigenous nations, from their sacred sites. I wanted to learn from the people themselves, not a university or an ethnic studies textbook. I want to hear their stories, from them. I’ll learn to look at their lands differently; to protect land and our way of life.

Self-sacrifice is part of our religion. It draws us closer to Mother Earth and the Creator. Every step, in these five months, is a walk in that direction.

People have given me so much: jewelry, clothing, and other things, and I have also gifted them back with medicines and different things.

One of the main reasons why I’m participating is because of DQ University, is home of the Longest Walk. It’s the only university not on a reservation that connects both South and North Natives. The only one trying to fulfill the prophecy of the Eagle and the Condor Uniting.

JC: Can you explain the prophecy more?

Mari: The Americas, from Alaska to Argentina never had borders. The Mayas, Hopis (as we heard from a Hopi elder and veteran of Wounded Knee), and other indigenous people traveled everywhere. Some peoples were nomadic and others weren’t. I’m not saying we all got along, but we all considered indigenous people and learned from each other. We all need to get back to that.

I need to connect my struggle to the Zapatistas and other indigenous people in Mexico.

When I say ‘To all my relations,’ it means that I’m related to people in Mexico and people all over the Earth and even the air.

JC: Can you speak North and South Native people uniting in their common identity?

Mari: DQ has been the only time people North and South struggled for a common cause and identity. This year is important because the Peace and Dignity Run and the Longest Walk are happening at the same time. So that represents the Eagle and the Condor.

My mother is Tagalog (people from The Phillipines). Tagalog has over 250 words in Nahuatl (indigenous language of the Mexica). Nanay means mother in Nahuatl and Tatay means father and Tagalog people use it. This speaks to the interconnectedness of struggles. The Spanish brought indigenous slaves from Mexico when they colonized The Phillipines, and the Tagalog people and Mexican people found similarities in their struggle. I connect with people from the South. I have a Spanish last name but that’s not my experience. It also speaks to Pacific Islander and Native people mixing.

It’s about protecting Mother Earth and our culture in all its forms. There’s a guy here from Japan, and he believes in the same message. It’s the first time he’s met Native people but he believes in the same message but his is through Buddhism.

Two Native brothers from Los Angeles, Robert and Luv, explain their experiences in the Longest Walk. They’ve been helping with security and will participate in the entire five months. They are both doing it to get physical, mental, and spiritual training. These two brothers were in the frontlines of the South Central Farm encampment and are members/supporters of Revolutionary Autonomous Communities.

Robert: The walk has been great and inspirational. There has been youth 9 to 12 running as well. Raquel who is Miwok and 12 years old ran with us, as well as Vincent who about 8 years old. After everybody was tired and resting, he wanted to dance for us. He showed us some traditional Miwok dances.

Luv and Robert: In every community we’ve been in, both native and non-native, people just give so much to us.

Robert: The weather has been good to us. The weather gave us a window to cross the Sierras.

Luv: Its been a spiritual walk. We’ve had some obstacles, people in the road and Highway Patrol.

Luv and Robert: A brother from Guatemala who worked for Cal Trans helped us get the permit to run. It shows how different indigenous people have supported.

We’ve been eating well and we’ve participating in ceremony. It’s been a reconnection with nature. Yesterday we saw a hawk eating a rabbit in the middle of the road.

Luv: The hawk was a blessing. The hawk is a spirit guide and a totem to me. An older woman who has been helping me with the walk gave me four hawk feathers. Today I got my first Eagle feather from a Shoshone woman.

These two brothers want people from Los Angeles and other cities to support the walk, join it, and support DQ University.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Los Angeles is the Heart of the Revolution

Los Angeles is the Heart of the Revolution
-Joaquin Cienfuegos

The city of lost angels and fallen stars
Stray bullets, highways and stolen cars

The ruthless police but the people are strong
Our fires and uprisings give our people hope and keep them warm.

The fire gets so hot it melts the plastic off of Hollywood
At times it might be tough, but if it came down to it we learn how to survive in the hood.

We are rebels.
From Watts, South Central, Compton, Pico Union, Inglewwod, East Los, Hollywood, Long Beach, Skid Row, and everywhere in between
The streets aren't paved with gold, and the problem for us is the Amerikkkan Dream.

The Reality is:

You know the story, it hasn't changed
Only when we realize what time it is
We work on our aim and pump the 12 gage

We practice the art of warfare because it is being waged in our communities.

We know when to strategically retreat
LA is home to revolutionaries that never known defeat!

City of color, with struggle in our eyes and vision of freedom.
Turning our neo-colonies into liberated autonomous territories.

It's not the corporate media or the university,
But it's the streets that gives us the real story

We are peoples living, fighting, and surviving.
Running, loving, and dying.
Hiding, hustling and writing

We make history
And we change it with our fists
Politicians, pigs, sell-outs, gentrifiers, land-lords, developers, settlers, capitalists, poverty-pimps
We're creating our shit list

It will always be a land struggle
So, Black and Brown and all colonized people unite against the common enemy:
The State
This will always be Mexico and Indigenous land so tell the colonizer this isn't a debate

It's a revolution!

Perfect, like a clear sky in Los Angeles that lasts for a couple of hours after the rain.
Like an open shot, a molotov, a machete, a poem, a piece on an abandoned building
Destroying our mental and physical chains

The enemy knows the potential so they divide the Black and Brown
and Distract us with Hollywood Scandals
The Amerikkkan empire is the Belly of the Beast
But to the Left and to the Bottom is Los Angeles