The story of multinational corporations taking land and resources from working people can be found all over the world. In Colombia, farming families have joined forces to reclaim their stolen land and defend it from local security forces acting on behalf of the Occidental Petroleum Corporation. The Real News reports from Arauquita, Colombia, on the frontlines of a land defenders’ campaign that stretches back decades. In Arauquita, Northeast Colombia, 150 farming families were displaced from this land 20 years ago. It’s been exploited by the Occidental Petroleum Corporation ever since. However, the farmers returned to reclaim their land.
A charity with strong ties to Prince Harry has been funding rangers responsible for horrific abuses against Indigenous people in the Congo, including torture and rape, according to a major investigation published in the UK’s Mail on Sunday. The abuses have taken place in Odzala-Kokoua National Park in the Republic of Congo, which is managed by African Parks – Prince Harry is a member of their Board of Directors, a position to which he was “elevated” in 2023, after having served as their President for six years. The investigation has uncovered evidence of countless atrocities committed by African Parks’ “armed militia” against local Baka people.
In Khan Younis, Palestinians continue to face constant Israeli attacks, including those on medical centers, further crippling Gaza’s healthcare infrastructure and institutions. The Israeli military has put several medical complexes under siege in Khan Younis, the second-largest city in Gaza, located in the southern district. At Nasser Hospital, The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) reports that “no one can enter or exit” because of the nearby bombardment . In addition to about 400 dialysis patients at Nasser Hospital who cannot access treatment, hundreds of wounded people, sick patients, and maternity cases are facing serious complications as a result of the lack of access to the hospital.
Attacks on Venezuela by the USA and its allies include 930 illegal sanctions that shut the country out from international finance blocking it from buying medicines, food or producing or selling its oil. Also there have been direct and indirect support for coup d’etat attempts, street violence leading to murders and injuries, cyberattacks on its electricity grid, sabotage of oil and infrastructure, financing criminal bands, corruption of officials, assassination attempt against the President and his cabinet, setting up a false presidency, appropriating CITGO oil company and billions of Venezuelan assets in banks, blocking the country from obtaining Covid-19 vaccines during a pandemic, and a brutal attack on the currency.
In the midst of King Charles’s state visit to Kenya, local authorities have begun brutal evictions of the Ogiek people from their homes in the Mau Forest. Rangers from the Kenyan Forestry Service and Kenyan Wildlife Service in collaboration with the Kenyan police are illegally evicting up to 700 Ogiek people from their homes in the name of conservation. Footage and images show Ogiek homes destroyed, some even burned to the ground. It has been reported that rangers are forcing some Ogiek people to tear down their homes themselves, in an attempt to claim that the communities are leaving voluntarily.
Located in Tanzania’s Southern Highlands, the district of Mbarali in the Mbeya region has long been considered the country’s “rice basket”. However, for the past year, smallholder farmers in the area have been unable to cultivate the grain even to securely feed themselves, let alone produce for the market. These farmers are among 21,252 people in Mbarali who are facing eviction from their land under the guise of a ‘biodiversity conservation’ project— namely, the expansion of the Ruaha National Park (RUNAPA) — being undertaken by the Tanzanian government, with funding from the World Bank.
Universities on Turtle Island, as la paperson writes, “are land-grabbing, land-transmogrifying, land-capitalizing machines.” Indigenous land theft, and profits from slavery, enabled these universities to be built in the first place – and they still collect profits from stolen lands. With this accumulated capital, major US universities have become colonial real estate agents. Harvard University, notably, owns land all over the world – from vineyards in Washington state to farmlands in Brazil, South Africa, New Zealand, and Romania. Harvard’s land-grabbing machine has harmed Indigenous communities, poisoning their water and crops in Brazil, and denying access to burial sites and pasture land in South Africa.
How will you feel if someone promises to remove an injustice you have suffered for years, but in the end leaves you suffering even more than before? Something similar appears to be happening to tribal communities in India in the context of the Forest Rights Act 2006. They were promised by the government that the historic injustice caused to them in the context of arbitrary classification of some of their land as forest land during colonial times will be corrected now. To realize this they were asked to file claims for the land cultivated by them but whose legal ownership was stated to be that of the forest department, hence leading to frequent harassment and eviction attempts. After a decade of such attempts the picture that emerged was that that several hundred thousand tribal households may face eviction from a big part of the land earlier cultivated by them!
Amid the unprecedented global ecological crisis, Africa still supports one quarter of the world’s biodiversity and the largest assemblages of megafauna. Indigenous Africans of the rangelands, desert, and forests have always protected their fauna and flora. Land where they exercise traditional rights has proven to be central for global biodiversity conservation. But today they are facing the threat of a colossal land grab by Western conservation agencies, and their corporate and state allies, who advocate to double the coverage of protected areas around the world by setting aside 30 percent of terrestrial cover for conservation by 2030. Protected areas are the national parks, forests, game reserves, and other places from which states evict original inhabitants for biodiversity conservation.
The Sweet Fern Savanna Land and Water Reserve, in the heart of Pembroke Township, Illinois, offers a glimpse into what much of the area looked like before European settlers drained swamps and cleared forests to grow corn and soybeans. At least 18 threatened or endangered plant and animal species, including the ornate box turtle and regal fritillary butterfly, have been sighted here. Mature oaks tower over verdant fields of clustered sedge and Carolina whipgrass. Warbling songbirds and buzzing cicadas add a mellow soundtrack to the tranquil scene. Sixty miles south of Chicago, this wildlife reserve is among nearly 2,900 acres owned by private individuals and environmental groups — most prominently, The Nature Conservancy — trying to establish a network of nature sanctuaries in Kankakee County.
Traditional Six Nations chiefs have declared a formal moratorium on development within the Haldimand Tract, a broad swath of land spanning 10 kms from either side of the Grand River as it winds its way from Dundalk, Ont. down to Lake Erie. Standing outside the Longhouse, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council said construction can’t proceed without the people’s consent — doubling down on their support for the land reclamation in Caledonia that now enters month 10. “The Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council endorses, supports and recognizes that development should not be proceeding on our lands,” Deyohowe:to Roger Silversmith, Snipe Clan chief of the Cayuga Nation, told reporters on Tuesday.
Prior to the war of 1948, Palestinians owned approximately 78% of total area of historical Palestine, the remaining were state land “as classified by British mandate at that time. Today, in 2021, Israelis constitute 52% of total population in historical Palestine but utilizes over 85% of the total land, while Palestinians comprised 48% of population and utilize 15% of the land (PCBS, press release, 2019) this drastic change of percentages indicates actions of land theft in Palestinian lands by the “Israeli” occupation. Between the years 1967 and 2017, 200 settlements have been established, 131 of which are officially announced as towns, along with 11 neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, and 16 other settlements in Gaza.
Haiti’s borders are curious. The small country is bordered to the east by the Dominican Republic, dividing in two the territory of the island of Hispaniola. To the west it borders the Caribbean Sea and to the south, a forgotten maritime border with the Republic of Colombia. But what interests us here is a border that is not entirely imaginary: to the north and northeast, although the maps would like to indicate otherwise, Haiti borders the United States. It is here, in this region, that most US economic interests – and also those of its smaller partners – are concentrated. This is the case of Canada, that peculiar North American colony that in turn colonizes others. But also those of France, Germany and other European nations.
On August 29, 1911, a Yahi man known as Ishi came out of hiding near Oroville, California. He had spent decades evading settlers after the massacre of his community in the 1860s and had recently lost the last of his family. Whisked off to the University of California’s anthropology museum, he was described by the press as the “last wild Indian.” Ishi spent his final years living at the museum. When he wasn’t explaining his language to researchers or making arrow points for visitors, he swept the floors with a straw broom as a janitor’s assistant.
As of noon on April 8th the total number of Covid-19 positive cases reported by Brazil’s health ministry exceeded 14,000 and the number of deaths exceeded 700. This is, by far, the highest number of reported cases in Latin America (though Ecuador has a greater number of reported cases and deaths on a per capita basis). The actual number of cases is likely many times greater, given that the current rate of testing for Covid-19 in Brazil is still very low – 258 per million, compared to 3,159 per million in Chile, 6,423 per million in the U.S. and 10,962 per million in Germany. In São Paulo, Brazil’s biggest city, and the hardest hit urban area in the country, the local health secretariat is reportedly only providing tallies for severe cases of the virus.