Watch the recording of the panel:
A huge crowd came out in Toronto today to march with Wet’suwet’en, Nahua, Otomi and Mixtec land defenders fighting off TC Energy’s pipelines. We held a huge round dance outside their office and vowed to continue to resist their colonial violence together until we WIN and they GO. pic.twitter.com/kFEbGr8FgV— World BEYOND War Canada (@WBWCanada) October 15, 2023
“When you look at the extent of violence that they’ve pulled on us, the Wet’suwet’en, to me it proves that they’ve already lost. When you’ve waded into the muck of violence you’ve lost your heart, your soul. Where’s the future of that?” said Chief Na’moks, hereditary chief of the Tsayu Clan of the Wet’suwet’en Nation.
“One of the things I was taught when growing up is that the true essence of a warrior carries a heavy burden, and that burden is peace. That burden of peace must be what we use. They come at us with violence but we will not stoop to their level.”
“They came at us with semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles”, shared Sleydo’, the spokesperson for the Gidimt’en check-point on Wet’suwet’en territory. “They pointed guns at our elders, our youth as we defended our territory. Every single time they did that, they put us in jail. And what did we do? We came right back. How many times have we had to stand up in the face of state repression?”
“We have thus far been able to stop the Tuxpan Tula pipeline by TC Energy,” said Salvador Aparicio Olvera, a campesino, social activist and land defender from the Otomi community, Chila de Juárez, in Puebla, Mexico. “But we know that this fight is not over, there are more threats every day. They see our resources as only a commodity but we are here to defend our forests.”
“As we gather here to stand with land defenders resisting colonial and often militarized violence across Turtle Island, we must also stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine,” said Rachel Small, Canada organizer with World BEYOND War addressing the crowd outside Global Affairs Canada.
“I am sick with horror and sadness and rage and ask you to join me today in committing to do everything in our power to stop the genocidal violence being carried out by Israel in Gaza right before our eyes, right now. This is happening with lots of help from Canada, including via millions in arms sales to the Israeli Defense Forces. Global Affairs Canada, in this building right behind me, is deeply complicit and must be held accountable.”
“Seeing all of you here today is inspirational to me,” Sleydo’ shared with the hundreds rallying outside TC Energy’s office on Saturday. “It helps us keep going, even in the face of the kind of repression that we are experiencing in our own territories, in our own homes, in our own ancient village sites. We have to stand with our relatives across Turtle Island and around the world. An attack on one is an attack on all.”