Racist and Holocaust Denier maligns Residential School survivors and their advocate, Kevin Annett Eagle Strong Voice, in Tyee magazine
Statement by the Indigenous Elders of TheInternational Human Rights Tribunal into Genocide inCanada (IHRTGC)
For International Media Release
30 April, 2008Squamish Nation Territory ("Vancouver, Canada")
We are shocked and disgusted by an article that appeared this week in the west coast magazine "TheTyee", authored by Terry Glavin. This article isnothing more than a racist denial of the claims ofresidential school survivors that children died andwere buried in mass graves across Canada.
The article is also a scathing and unsubstantiate dpersonal attack on the one caucasian man who has fought consistently and with great self-sacrifice for residential school survivors in Canada, Reverend Kevin Annett, who has been given the sacred name Eagle Strong Voice by our elder and IHRTGC judge Chief Louis Daniels, and adopted by him into the Anishinabe Nation. We therefore consider any attack made upon Reverend Annett to be an attack on the Anishinabe people, and on us.
We consider The Tyee to have violated and dishonoured our people by printing this hateful and misleadingarticle, and we demand its formal retraction and thepublicc ensure of Terry Glavin by the magazine and byall concerned citizens.
Until The Tyee takes these steps, we call upon all people to boycott this publication.
For generations we have fought against the kind of ignorance and racism spouted by Mr. Glavin, who is basically calling our people liars.
For example, Glavin insultingly refers to eyewitnesses' accounts of residential school graves as"urban legends ... like alligators in New York sewers"(!).
In effect, Glavin is saying that there are no mass graves of native children, when the very body heclaims to support - the government's"Truth andReconciliation Commission" - has already citedevidence that children in these schools were buried"four or five to a grave".
This is not an "urban legend", as Glavin sarcasticallyclaims. This is the truth, as witnessed by SylvesterGreene, who personally buried an Inuit child at theUnited Church school in Edmonton in 1953; or William Combes, who saw a priest bury a child at the KamloopsCatholic school in 1964.
Is Glavin calling these men liars? Why has he no tinterviewed them, and given their story the sameexposure as he has his hatred against Reverend Annett?
And why does Glavin falsely claim that the RCMP have"investigated" these claims and "found nothing"? Thisis an outright lie, for on countless occasions, we have taken this evidence to the RCMP, who have flatlyrefused to investigate. For they, like Mr. Glavin, areactively concealing this crime of genocide against ourpeople.
With typical colonial arrogance, and speaking in thesame tongue as our church and government abusers,Terry Glavin states that all our claims are alreadyknown, and that the history of the residential schoolsis not hidden. What a lie this is! The real story ofthese schools has only begun to be told, as is evidentin Glavin's and The Tyee's refusal to reprint or comment on any of the evidence of murders, forcedsterilizations and mass graves that we have submitted to them over the past four years.
Rather than help our people, Terry Glavin engages in the worst kind of character assassination and yellow journalism by attacking Rev. Annett personally, belittling and mocking the physical attacks made against him, and subjecting him to the same kind of cruelty that has been inflicted on him by those inchurch and state who are responsible for the torture and death of our children in residential schools. Wetherefore must ask if Glavin is working for these samedestructive parties.
We are especially appalled that Glavin is posing as a"supporter" of our people while conducting such ahateful and destructive assault on our work and theword of residential school survivors. Lacking the honesty or courage to attack us directly, Glavintargets Reverend Annett, who he portrays as being the
author of the claims of murder and mass burials at residential schools.
Let this be clear: the claims that Glavin is attacking concerning the murder and burial of residential schoolchildren do not emanate from Kevin Annett, but from hundreds of eyewitnesses who saw these killings, participated in burying children, orpersonally experienced the brutalities documented soaccurately by Reverend Annett since 1996.ReverendAnnett is simply the messenger of these accounts.
In that regard, we stand by every statement made by Reverend Annett concerning crimes in Indian Residential Schools, and we challenge Mr. Glavin andThe Tyee to refute them with evidence of their own.
In addition, on March 16, 2008, Reverend Annett was appointed as the personal agent of hereditary SquamishChief Kiapilano, on whose land Mr. Glavin lives andThe Tyee is published. We therefore consider TerryGlavin and The Tyee to have violated their occupancyof Chief Kiapilano's land, and Chief Kiapilano's hospitality, and we call upon both Terry Glavin andThe Tyee to vacate Squamish territory immediately.
Let us conclude by saying that we consider Terry Glavin's article to be an outright assault on allresidential school survivors and their struggle to beheard and believed. Glavin and The Tyee have set backthe clock and added to the crushing burden on ourpeople by undermining that struggle.
We insist that, once it has relocated, The Tyee immediately open its pages to those residential school survivors who can speak of the murders they have witnessed, and the burial sites they know exist. If itrefuses to, we must assume that the Tyee endorses theracist and irresponsible garbage written by TerryGlavin.
We call upon the world to endorse our condemnation and expulsion of Terry Glavin and The Tyee, and to boycott this magazine and person.
Sincerely, we are
The Indigenous Elders of the IHRTGC, coming from theSquamish, Cree, Metis, Anishinabe, Lakota and SixNations under the traditional Land Law Jurisdiction ofTurtle Island.
Chief Louis Daniels, presiding elder
30 April, 2008