Madsen: Fourth World Under Unprecedented Threat

Never in recent times has the Fourth World – the 370 million indigenous peoples who have no states of their own – been under assault, as it is now, from a combination of proto-fascist governments and resource-grabbing corporations. The basic tenets of the 2007 United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) are being undermined by governments that are serving the interests of mining and drilling companies eager to displace indigenous peoples from their natural resources, much of which are found on sacred ancestral lands.

In 2016, Bears Ears National Monument in Utah and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument were designated protected areas under the Antiquities Act. On December 4, 2017, Donald Trump ordered a large portion of the monuments seized and turned over to uranium and other mining companies in violation of the US Constitution and international treaties signed between the US government and the five native tribes – Hopi Nation, Navajo Nation, Ute Indian Tribe, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, and Zuni Pueblo Nation – that consider the monument areas as sacred and inviolable by miners, drillers, and other despoilers of the land….

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