Saturday, January 12, 2008
On December 19, 2007 the Lakotah Sioux Indians broke of all of their treaties with the Government of the United States and declared the independent Republic of Lakotah, which encompasses territory from Nebraska, Wyoming, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota.
A four-member delegation of the Lakotah Sioux Indians visited Washington, D.C. to formally submit their withdrawal from their treaties with the American government. The Lakotah Sioux’s legal basis for the move is based on the U.S. Constitution itself, which indicates that treaties are the highest law of the land. One of the delegates, Phyllis Young, a former indigenous representative to the United Nations, stated that “We have 33 treaties with the United States that they have not lived by. They continue to take our land, our water, our children.’’
The Lakotah Sioux have suffered greatly under the rule of the U.S., with a life-expectancy of 44-years for men, one of the lowest in the world, and with an infant mortality rate five times that of the average American.
Russel Means, one of the representatives of the new country and one of the founders of the American Indian Movement, declared that “We are no longer citizens of the United States of America and all those who live in the five-state area that encompasses our country are free to join us.” Citizens of the new country will live tax-free, and will be issued new passports and driver’s licenses.
While in Washington, representatives of the new country visited the embassies of Venezuela, Bolivia, Chile, and South Africa to request diplomatic recognition. Ireland and East Timor have also expressed interest in the declaration.
Duane Martin Sr., one of the Washington delegates said “after 150 years of colonial enforcement, when you back people into a corner there is only one alternative...to bring freedom into its existence by taking it back to the love of freedom, to our lifeway.”