The continuation of Skiing Uphill and Boregasm, Zug is 'the little blog that could.'

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Name: Ed Waldo
Location: of The West,

I am a fictional construct originally conceived as a pen name for articles in the Los Angeles FREE PRESS at the 2000 Democratic Convention. The plume relating to the nom in question rests in the left hand of Hart Williams, about whom, the less said, the better. Officially "SMEARED" by the Howie Rich Gang . GIT'CHER ZUG SWAG HERE!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Even The Navajo Can't Stand Her

I was blogging before there was actually a word for it. In this case, it related to a bunch of Oregon white holier-than-thou types sniffing at me that the evil Hopi thugs were beating up the poor innocent Navajos in Arizona. Well, having grown up a piece in New Mexico, and having played a lot of touch football at the Indian School on Cerillos Road in Santa Fe, I was sure they had it backwards.

After all, the Navajo reservation in NW Arizona, NE New Mexico, and a bit of Utah covers an area the size of West Virginia with half a million Navajo completely SURROUNDING the Hopi Reservation of about 10,000 Hopi, a group noted for their NON-Violent approach to religion.

As urban-dwelling farmers for thousands of years, they were quite a contrast to the hunter/gatherer Navajo. Perhaps the snooty white women had it backwards.

After all, the Navajo/Apache have a bit of a rep among the Pueblo Indians - Hopi slang for Navajo refers to their alleged favorite method of killing victims, Tuh-sah-vo, or "Head Crushers."

"No, no!" I was told: "You don't know anything you STUPID WHITE MAN!" (this from White Women).

So, my wife and I packed up the van, and WENT there. I'd been there before several times — my favorite shortcut home from the West Coast used to be north off of I-40 to the Grand Canyon at Williams, AZ, thence east along the gorge of the Little Colorado, juke north to Tuba City, then across to Farmington and Ship Rock, and thence down to Santa Fe. I had driven through the Hopi Rez several times, cutting south from Tuba City to the Painted Desert/Petrified Forest, but hadn't stopped.

This time, we did. A series of investigative pieces followed over a few years. Alas, the national Press Corpse knows about as much about Native Americans as they seem to know about "facts," and my reports stand in stark contrast to the typically flim-flammed "dude" who's spent a couple days in Indian Country and thinks they can write with authority on the cross-cultural issues involved. After more than 500 years, we still have very little idea WHO it was that we stole this continent from. (In most cases, they might as well be from Mars, for all we know about them.)

I visited again, and rode the back country with a Hopi Range monitor, who showed me the "Sun Dance" sites, etc. in 2002. It may be time to go again. Anyway, this piece is in the news again, and I've spent two days bringing the broken links back up to date.

Since you're getting this for free, you won't complain if I reprint the 2000 article. Take a couple days. I'm researching on some amazing stuff. From my website, 2000:

Who is Marsha Monestersky
(And Why is She Saying all those Terrible Things about the Hopi)?

or, the Internet record of
M. Monestersky (Hjulstrom)
an investigative report by Hart Williams

NOTE, March 2007: Ms. Monestersky is in the news again, this time for her unwelcome presence on the Navajo Rez. This report dates from 2000, and chronicles both her 1996 "excommunication" from Louise Benally and the 'Sovereign Dineh Nation' and her 2000 Exclusion hearing in Hopi Tribal Court. This Jewish activist with old ties to the NATLFED/Communist Party USA insists that she should be on the NPL/HPL no matter what tribal courts and organizations on either side of the "Hopi/Navajo" dispute have to say about it. Ironically, as a gringo, tribal courts have very limited jurisdiction over her, which, perhaps, explains her ability, over a decade and more to, evidently, remain where she's not welcome.

[3-29-07 - I have resurrected most broken links, and added time-appropriate new links where available.]

"Guests and fish smell after three days."
B. Franklin/Poor Richard

"What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents ..."

-- Robert F. Kennedy, THE PURSUIT OF JUSTICE (1964)


—Sovereign Dineh Nation, 1996

On January 9, 1998, a forum entitled: "PROPHECIES, DREAMS, STRUGGLES: THE CULTURE AND RELIGION OF THE DINEH" began in New York City:

"Good afternoon. Welcome to the Church Center for the United Nations and welcome to this forum. My name is Liberato Bautista. I am the main representative of the UN Office of the General Board of Church and Society to the United Nations, and we're glad that you're here. The World Council of Churches, the Women in Development represented here by Maria Arias-Zeballos, and our board has served for several weeks now as a steering committee in preparation for this forum and for some other activities that will culminate in a delegation that is going to Black Mesa in the first week of February."

After an invocation and a long-winded speech, with a short teaser from the infamous "documentary" "Broken Arrow," the real mover and shaker of the proceedings was introduced:

"It is wonderful to be here and to see all of you. My name is Marsha Monestersky. I am a consultant to the Sovereign Dineh Nation and I am also co-chair to the NGO Human Rights Caucus at the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. It is wonderful to see you all today and to see the support for the Dineh."

The only problem was that Marsha Monestersky allegedly WASN’T a consultant to SDN. According to the SDN Primenet site, she was actually on the run from the Navajo Tribal Police, criminal charges having been filed against her by and according TO the SDN:

"To them and to all whom this person is known, I, Louise Benally, Executive Director of Sovereign Dineh Nation-Dineh Alliance of Big Mountain, AZ, made the decision, on March 19, 1996, that Marsha Monestersky is no longer associated with Dineh Alliance, the political arm of Sovereign Dineh Nation."

[Note: The SDN takes its name from having "seceded" from the Union, the Navajo Nation, and, one presumes, Planet Earth — claiming to obey no law whatsoever, save for that that the "gods" conveniently supply them. Strangely, the "gods" always seem to urge the SDN to do what the SDN originally WANTED to do....]

No one could doubt Monestersky’s devotion to The Cause. The only problem was that the SDN claimed she operated from a moral compass that seemed entirely her own.

Benally, the leader of the Big Mountain resisters seemingly posted a document on-line accusing Monestersky ("Monstersky" in the link) of some serious transgressions:


  • Opened a credit card account ("Dineh-Hopi Alliance, Bay Bank, Burlington, MA, Account # 3186 094 6) without the knowledge, consent, or authorization of The People, even before SDN-"Dineh Alliance" was organized;

  • Misused SDN-Dineh Alliance's Internet Home Page, going contrary to specific directives at a Jan. 06, 1996 special meeting and knowingly placed on it, material in litigation, much of it inflammatory, against the Hopi Tribe and Council, thereby inciting harsh feelings and attitudes against our organization, certain individuals, and especially the Dineh (Navajo) who live on Hopi Partitioned Land (HPL);

  • Had a "personal" meeting in our former office with a known and identified FBI agent assigned to our area on Big Mountain;

  • Assaulted (along with her twin sister) the president of our organization on March 19, 1996 in our office in front of two witnesses;

  • Broke into our office and without permission, took our computer, fax machine, and other property belonging to SDN-Dineh Alliance; Disregarded a court order and failed to appear in court (Chinle Court, May 24, 1996), to answer to our criminal complaint, and openly defies the very law enforcement authorities that we reported her to, without the worry of arrest as she crosses the HPL/Navajo Partitioned Land with impunity;

  • Shut down our Pinon U.S. Post Office box with one phone call and diverted our mail (personal and organizational) to another address for over a month and a half;

  • Is conducting a full-time, full scale campaign to discredit, undermine and ursup (sic) Dineh leadership and labors already in place long before she came to our land and who continually seeks control of our resources, financial and otherwise.

Was this the SAME person who in 1998 was stage-managing a film, shaman and Dineh show for goggle-eyed New Yorkers and UN bigwigs?

It was. According to Mauro Oliveira of SOL Communications (on whose stationery Monestersky is listed as a board member, and in whose behalf Oliveira writes to the Hopi Tribal Council in an undated letter posted at Sol’s website):

"I have the receipts to show that the United Nations visit as well as numerous trips the Dineh elders have made to all parts of the globe were organized by Marsha or groups like SOL that work with Marsha."

[Note: It seems an act of sheerest lunacy that Oliveira would write to the Hopi Tribal Council, "this is the person who organized the UN trip to paint you as devils before the world" as a means of convincing the Tribe NOT to exclude Monestersky from the Reservation, but there it is in black and white. Thus far, I have no explanation for this strange "character witness" epistle. HW]

Reporter Jerry Kammer, profiled Monestersky this way in the ARIZONA REPUBLIC on February 2, 2000:

"A former student radical and labor organizer, Monestersky calls herself a "consultant" to the Sovereign Dine Nation - as some Navajos resisting relocation label themselves. At 47, she's perhaps the most visible member of an international community of non-Indians protesting relocation. She's also the most controversial."

Indeed, the earliest record of Marsha (Hjulstrom at the time, if Benally is to be believed) is, seemingly, this posting, from 1992, from the Native-L Archives:

"POWWOW 1992, celebrating 500 years of Native survival will be held Sunday, October 11 and Monday, October 12, 1992 at the MDC Esplanade Hatshell, Storrow Drive, Boston, MA. Over 100,000 people are expected to attend. At this event, Marsha Hjulstrom, a volunteer for Defenders of Wildlife, is scheduled to speak about wolf reintroduction to Yellowstone National Park. Marsha, together with volunteers from all over the country this past summer worked at a Defenders of Wildlife wolf booth in Yellowstone and received over 34,000 votes for wolf reintroduction. At POWOW 1992 a wolf booth will also be set up with petitions available for signature addressed to the Secretary of the Interior."

Is it Monestersky? The internal evidence seems to indicate that it is.


By 1997, Monestersky was in New York City, instrumental in arranging the abortive visit to HPL of Abdelfattah Amor, the UN "Special Rapporteur for Religious Intolerance" whose presence at Big Mountain in early 1998 was meant, some believe, to both embarrass the United States, and accomplish through negative publicity what endless lawsuits, protests and an almost endless litany of half-truths and distortions could not: denying the Hopi Tribe jurisdiction over the HPL, the former "joint-use" lands.

Amor didn’t bother finding out that there was another side to the dispute, and, when he arrived in Arizona in February 1998, was embarrassed to find that he was, technically, trespassing by visiting the HPL without bothering to ask for permission, and infringing on a Hopi religious ceremonial month.

[Amor refused to meet with Hopi Tribal leaders on Hopi land, evidently preferring, instead, to believe the oft-repeated lie that the Hopi Tribal Council was a "puppet government" and that the late Dan Evehama, "Emory" (Holmes?) and Martin Gasweseoma at Big Mountain were the true Hopi. Not an auspicious record for someone battling "religious intolerance."]

Nonetheless, in September of 1999, an e-mail epistle sent to several internet mailing lists stated that "apartheid" must end at Big Mountain, and carried the distorted claim that: "A Report issued by Mr. Abdelfattah Amor, Special Rapporteur on Religious Intolerance of the UN Commission on Human Rights makes a finding of discrimination by the US." The letter was signed by, among others, "Marsha Monestersky, Consultant, and carried the return address "Dinetah29@aol.com," which was the regular e-mail address for letters allegedly to and from Ms. Monestersky.

[What Amor actually said, tucked away down in a long report and all but obscured in the midst of a blizzard of bureaucratese, was this: "On the subject of Black Mesa, the Special Rapporteur calls for the observance of international law on freedom of religion and its manifestations." Not exactly the damning accusation the Big Mountaineers had hoped for.]

Monestersky had, by co-chairing the UN NGO Human Rights Caucus while in "exile" in New York, seemingly managed to convince, with endless testimony from Navajo resisters, and a wealth of other "green" testimonials, that the poor Navajo of Big Mountain were being denied their very right to practice their religion by jack-booted Hopi Rangers in thrall to the U.S. Government and the 'nefarious' Peabody Coal Company.

Amor received the obligatory (and seemingly intellectually intimidating) letter from Thayer Scudder, Professor of Anthropology at CalTech.* [see article]

Another attempt to have the Navajo religion declared "matriarchal" and the relocation a violation of "women’s rights" by the same UN panels (and to have another Special Rapporteur) died in its infancy. The UN was having no more. Whether this was because of Monestersky’s involvement or lack of it is unclear from the record.

But Monestersky was no longer "in the dog house" as far as the SDN was concerned. Armed with a letter from San Francisco "environmental lawyer" Charles Miller, Monestersky returned to live near HPL sometime in 1998 as a "legal assistant," exploiting Tribal Law that forbade exclusion of same, as Miller put it in a letter to many of the same newsgroups in August of 1999: "As an attorney, I represent Navajo families who reside on the Hopi Partitioned Lands ("HPL"). I have retained Ms. Monestersky to be my legal assistant and consultant with regard to this representation."

[Note: This article is entirely from the internet record, and whether Text of response to the Hopi Tribe submitted from the: "Law Office of Charles M. Miller 225 Bush Street-16th floor San Francisco, CA 94104 Telephone: (415) 439-8357 Facsimile: (415) 439-8358 Cellular: (415) 608-0635 e-mail: cms@charles-m-miller-aty.com VIA FAX AND U.S. MAIL July 2, 1999 RE: NOTICE OF PROPOSED ORDER OF EXCLUSION MARSHA JOAN MONESTERSKY:" is authentic or a forgery is unknown. Such is the nature of the Internet]

Was Monestersky a "legal assistant and consultant"?

Certainly in June 1999, the following was sent via e-mail to activists and newsgroups around the world:

The following is an article written for VERDICT, a magazine for legal professionals, by Marsha Monestersky.

Black Mesa Crisis

Author Bio:

Marsha Monestersky has lived on Black Mesa for the past seven years. She serves as Consultant to Sovereign Dineh Nation, a grass-roots organization of traditional Dineh families on Black Mesa. She is a founding member of the International Peoples Tribunal on Human Rights and the Environment and Co-Chair of the Non Governmental Organization (NGO) Human Rights Caucus at the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Ms. Monestersky has facilitated the filing of numerous testimonies to the US Congress, the United Nations and Citizens Complaints to the US Department of the Interiors Office of Surface Mining (OSM). Ms. Monestersky wrote the appeal and served as pro se counsel in 1995 in Administrative Law Court. The initially successful lawsuit, Dineh Alliance v. Peabody Coal Company and OSM was described in Judith Nies " Native American History" as the first time Native Americans ever beat a multi-national corporation in a US court. Ms. Monestersky received a US Environmental Protection Agency "Certificate of Merit" in June 1992 and was awarded a Martin Luther King Jr. "Spirit of the Drum" human rights award in February 1999."

The opening statement that she has lived on Black Mesa for the past seven years is questionable, unless one believes that midtown Manhattan is an extreme eastern arm of Black Mesa, since she was demonstrably there through most of 1997. Add to this Miller’s alleged statement in the letter quoted above:

"You should be advised that Ms. Monestersky does not reside on the Reservation. Therefore, the Proposed Order is incorrect to the extent it seeks to remove Ms. Monestersky from the Reservation because she resides there. Therefore, we will only address the several reasons why Ms. Monestersky, as a nonresident of the Reservation, is not in violation of Hopi Ordinance 46 and not subject to exclusion."

As for that legal term, "pro se—Denotes that a party is appearing ‘for himself,’ rather than with representation by an attorney" states the Mississippi Bar’s "Guide to Legalese."

And an "Administrative Court" is a "Court of Limited Jurisdiction" something like a bankruptcy court, or a tax court. Monestersky’s assertion that her suit was "initially successful" seems to indicate that the case was lost when taken to an actual court of competent jurisdiction.

The SDN alleged in 1996: "You and your twin sister, Rita Sebastion (sic), are not Dine' and you both shall not imply or claim to be the ‘Monster Slayer Twins’, or the fulfillment of Dine' (and Hopi) prophecy; You shall go back to your world that you came from, taking with you, your lies on paper, your ventriloquist dolls, and your followers," which some might feel indicates a rich fantasy life.

There seems to be a lack of candor in the bio for the "Law Journal" article. And further research reveals that this purported "Law Journal" may represent something far more sinister than a mere forum for yet another White "activist"s determination of who IS and who ISN’T a legitimate Hopi, and how we Whites shouldn’t interfere with Indigenous Peoples (except, of course, in this case, on this side of the question).

Strangely, Monestersky’s article contains NO footnotes or citations. This is all but unheard-of in law reviews, and there are virtually NO references to the many legal cases and appeals filed in the 30-odd years of the modern HPL/NPL dispute. Monestersky’s "legal" article doesn’t sound legal at all: merely a political rehash of every "genocide," "coal conspiracy," "radiation" and "bulldozer" allegation made a thousand times before to various "activist" groups on behalf of the HPL Navajo "resisters" over the past quarter century.

Even the title "American Apartheid," seems to barely even fit the story itself. The parallel is difficult, if not impossible to find in the article.

But putting "Coalition of Concerned Legal Professionals" into a search engine turns up something quite disturbing, and unanticipated.

The "CCLP" who publish "VERDICT Magazine" and "VERDICT" itself are – according to the website, "The Truth About NATLFED" both fronts for (and have been known as such since the early 1970s) an organization known as the Provisional Party of Communists, but is more commonly referred to by its main front name, the National Labor Federation, or NATLFED, or the CPUSA/P (Communist Party USA, Provisional).

Links on the ex-NATLFED site include FACTnet, the Anti-Defamation League, articles in the NEW YORK TIMES, the American Family Foundation site, Rick Ross (a debunker of "cults"), and others. There is a large archive of articles (going back decades) at: http://www.users.interport.net/~xnatlfed/artindex.html

According to the Anti-Defamation League, "The CPUSA/P which has been described as a cult, attracts idealistic young followers with "progressive" volunteer opportunities, but soon allegedly attempts to brainwash supporters, turning them into soldiers ready for a revolution aimed at overthrowing the United States Government ... According to Professor Harvey Klehr of Emory University ... CPUSA/P has its members live communally, work continuously and give their money to the organization, prompting charges that they are "political Moonies."

The NEW YORK TIMES [11/14/96] reported:

"As Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani displayed what he called 'an enormous cache of weapons that can be used for mass destruction,' officials said yesterday that a grand jury would investigate the secretive group that amassed the stockpile of guns and ammunition in a cluster of Brooklyn apartment buildings. The Brooklyn District Attorney, Charles J. Hynes, said charges had been filed against five members of the group, which was based in the apartment buildings on Carroll Street in, Crown Heights. He said the grand jury would try to determine what, if anything, the group intended to do with the weapons."

Sinister, indeed. But what does this have to do with the "CCLP" and VERDICT Magazine?

From the [New York] Daily News, 11/14/96:

Daniel Foster and Amanda Reid, both members of the [NATLFED] group, were sentenced in 1986 to up to six years in prison on charges based on Prior's allegations. The two were among those rearrested Monday after police checking a child-abuse complaint found the arsenal in the group's headquarters on Carroll St. in Crown Heights. Details of the old case emerged as Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes announced that weapons charges would be filed against three members....


Listed on the NCCLP Board of Directors on the letterhead that came with my copy of VERDICT: "Amanda Reid, J.D." and "Daniel P. Foster, J.D."

[Note: at LEAST five other names on the letterhead have been identified as long-time NATLFED operatives, one of whom was, additionally, disbarred in the same case cited above. Others are currently being identified. This investigation is ongoing. - HW]

According to the organization that operates "The Truth about NATLFED" website (ex-members and parents of members):

NATLFED operates not openly, but through fronts. It often publicly calls the fronts "mutual benefit assocations," and privately calls them "entities."

And, on another page: CCLP "Coalition of Concerned Legal Professionals," and this facsimile of the VERDICT cover:

A cheaply printed 2-color semigloss cover

The Eagle-bearing-scales logo is the same (albeit it is used inside my magazine copy) used on the NCCLP letterhead. There is no reasonable doubt that CCLP and Verdict are fronts of the same organization arrested in New York City in 1996.[Was "former student radical and labor organizer" Monestersky there when the arrests transpired? The record is unclear. She is nearby at the UN in 1997, however. The coincidence is legally unconvincing, and yet it is remarkable.]

"NATLFED entity newspapers often bear seasonal or monthly dates but are rarely published more than once a year, only pretending greater activity. They bear ads from national consumer products like Bayer, Pine-Sol, and Kikkoman, possibly without compensation, to add a legitimate look, as well as ads from local merchants unaware of the entities' true goals. Newspapers are distributed, rather than issued, by the entities, since content and production of all is centralized by NATLFED. Here are newspapers for which we can show mastheads; there are several more." [ibid.]

This reporter obtained a copy of the magazine containing Ms. Monestersky’s "legal article" and it IS the same publication. Cheaply printed with two-color card stock cover and blank inside front cover, the "magazine for legal professionals" claims to be a quarterly and clocks in at a mere 48 pages (barely more than a newsletter)! The ads are, often as not, business cards from lawyers. Vendors I contacted stated that smaller ads cost them about $100 each and that they were telephonically solicited. They knew nothing about the magazine itself.

Just in case, however, I contacted the source quoted in one of the NEW YORK TIMES pieces, who replied: "I would guess that none of the contributors know exactly who they're dealing with, but some may actively support what they do know about them. I assure you, with no doubt, that this is the same VERDICT which is put out to boost the same CCLP for the same Natlfed." (source asked name not be used).

The West Coast mailing address is a somewhat disheveled private residence (not law offices, as one would expect, at a minimum) in the Pico-Robertson area of Los Angeles, near the confluence of the 10 and 405 Freeways.

Perhaps Ms. Monestersky is entirely oblivious to the ultimate purposes of her publishers. There is no hard evidence that she is a member of the "cult," as the ADL terms it. According to the Anti-Defamation League:

"Examples of the innocuous-sounding front groups for CPUSA/P include The Women's Press Collective, California Homemakers Association, Coalition of Concerned Medical Professionals, and the above-mentioned Eastern Farm Workers Association."

Still, "group propaganda suggests that the real aim of [CPUSA/P] recruiting efforts is to attract followers for the eventual overthrow of the U.S. government," and Ms. Monestersky seems by her writings and actions openly hostile to the U.S. government for disagreeing with her policies. So we can’t DISCOUNT a connection between Monestersky and CPUSA/P aka NATLFED. Certainly the UN visit was an attempt to publicly embarrass and humiliate the US Government.

The only fact confirmed thus far is that Monestersky’s "legal article" has been published by and acted as a fundraiser FOR a group known to advocate the violent overthrow of the government. Still, in the same issue, VILLAGE VOICE columnist Nat Hentoff and famed San Francisco lawyer Nathan Cohn have articles, although I have been unable to learn whether or not the articles were printed with Cohn and Hentoff’s knowledge. [2007: Hentoff refused to reply to repeated requests for clarification.] Do THEY support NATLFED (they are listed as on the CCLP’s Board of Directors as well, on the letterhead)?

[click here to see a scanned image of the NCCLP letterhead.]

There is no indication one way or another.

On August 18, a breathless Monestersky allegedly wrote, for wide distribution on the internet:

"How to get your copy: Verdict is published four times a year. You can call CCLP [...] to order your copy. The suggested donation for an individual issue is $5. The suggested donation for a Verdict subscription is $30; checks are made payable to: Coalition of Concerned Legal Professionals of (CCLP) and sent to CCLP (sic) [...] Do you want to get your copy? Do you want 50 or 100 copies or a box of 130 shipped to you? Do you want 2 or 3 boxes sent to different locations? This can be used in classrooms, for formal meetings and more. Contact CCLP so you can get your copies RIGHT away. Act now, so that this magazine can be put to good use ... [ellipses in original] This is an excellent organizing tool, and can help both elevate public awareness but even more so generate more commited (sic) people to the struggle ... especially when combined with copies of the video "Vanishing Prayer" [...]

Please call and get your copy of VERDICT magazine today."

From the Anti-Defamation League Backgrounder: "In the early morning of Tuesday, November 12, 1996, prompted by a telephone tip suggesting child abuse, police officials raided three adjacent brownstones in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. Once inside, the officials discovered a maze of secret tunnels linking the houses, extensive supplies, large barrels and freezers stocked with food, and a small arsenal of weapons. Police arrested close to 30 members of the Communist Party USA/Provisional (CPUSA/P)

Nonetheless, when terms like "American apartheid," and "genocide," are used, and statements like: ". In 1974, the Washington Post published an article, "Whose Home on the Range?", that basically said, "If you want to find out who's running the Hopi Tribal Council, you could call the Mormons in Salt Lake City [Utah]" are made before members of the World Council of Churches, then there ARE no guarantees that groups like NATLFED aren’t being recruited as a "last resort" if final evictions are attempted by the BIA at Big Mountain.

The only certainly is that there is no overabundance of truthfulness here.

As this is written, Ms. Monestersky is awaiting a hearing before the Hopi Tribal Council. She has (seemingly) sent out a letter over the internet, asking:

Dear Big Mountain Supporters,

On Christmas Day I received my second Exclusion Order, called an Amended Order of Proposed Exclusion from the Hopi Tribe.

If you are interested in doing a letter of support for me to the Hopi Court (sic) to help me stay here, please send your letter via fast mail and address it to: [...]

We know some of the contents of Mr. Oliveira’s letter were. Who can say who her friends and enemies are? After all, when Louise Benally allegedly wrote her SDN letter, allegedly excluding Monestersky from Big Mountain, many SDN allegedly signed the alleged letter:

[letter asking for money, 12/24/99]:

With our wishes for a blessed Holiday Season We Thank you,

Ruth Benally, Vina Benally Horseherder, Elvira Benally Horseherder, Supported by: Mae Shay, Elsie Shay, Kee Shay, Shay Benally, Leonard Bennally, Alice, Kee Z. and Arlene Begay, Rena Babbitt and John Lane, Norris and Lena Nez, Marsha Monestersky

From Louise Benally in 1996:

"Go now, beyond the Four Sacred Mountains of our traditional aboriginal homeland as none of the true resisters on Hopi Partitioned Land will hear from you any longer. The bad feelings, division, and confusion you bring is unacceptable and is not our way. I will continue to pray for you.

"Thank you once again for your assistance that benefited The People...I will also continue to carry on with my labors as I always have, with trusted others who share my vision for the Dine' of Big Mountain and Black Mesa. In prayer, song, and ceremony, we remain strong as traditional Dine', unified in heart and spirit.


Louise Benally, Executive Director, Sovereign Dineh Nation-Dineh Alliance
Hazel Lou Nez, Chairwoman, Board of Directors
Sarah Begay, Board of Directors
Kee Shay, Board of Directors
Alice Benally, Board of Directors
Lonnie Bedoni, Staff Assistant
Mervyn Tilden, Staff Assistant




Sovereign Dineh Nation-Dineh Alliance Membership and HPL Residents:

Signature collection is on-going...

[page is archived here]

It seems ironic, indeed, that Kee Shay will now be the other party at the exclusion order hearing to bar both Shay AND Monestersky from the Hopi reservation.

At the same time, she’s the accepted spokesperson for the Big Mountain resistance, as putting her name into any search engine will readily prove, and was the contact person, evidently, for AP writer Pauline Arrillaga’s story that was carried from coast to coast, from the Boston Globe to the Eugene (Ore.) Register-Guard (often with just the AP tag, no byline):

"By PAULINE ARRILLAGA, Associated Press Writer, Jan 31, 2000

BIG MOUNTAIN, Ariz. (AP) — The feud has festered for more than a century. Lawsuits were filed, agreements worked out, deadlines set and ignored. And still the battle rages between Hopi and Navajo Indians over a desolate piece of earth both consider their own ...."

A jubilant Monestersky posted this personal letter* she’d received to the Internet shortly thereafter. It began:

"Dear Marsha,

"Here's a copy of the story. I'll also get some copies in the mail to you. Just for your information, this version of the story ran out West, while a shorter version ran nationally.

Thank you for all your help that day. Matt and I were so appreciative. I wish I could have included more of the stories we heard while on the reservation, but unfortunately I was limited by space. Thank you, again.



"Navajos living on Hopi land to face eviction proceedings after Feb. 1


[*NOTE 2007 - One seriously doubts that such an intimate letter was sent to anyone on the Hopi Tribal Council, which, according to my sources, was never contacted by the "reporter" in question. This is, frankly, corrupt reportage by any standard of minimal professionalism. - HW]

Now we see her as reporter Jerry Kammer [author of pro-Big Mountain book, THE SECOND LONG WALK, UNM Press, 1980] wrote in the Arizona Republic, 2-2-2000:

BLACK MESA - Her laptop is powered by a windmill generator. Her workplace is a tiny mobile home dropped into the vast expanse of northeastern Arizona. Still, Marsha Monestersky turns on her computer and taps into a decades-long wave of international protest over an issue most Americans have never heard of ....


We just don’t know who she’s writing to.

—Eugene, Oregon
Feb 22, 2000

2007 NOTE: On June 27, 2002, Monestersky lost her final appeal in the case Monestersky v. Hopi. Technically, she is permanently excluded from the Hopi Reservation, although my sources indicate that she has never paid any attention to the order. —HW

For a more complete view of the Hopi Navajo land dispute, see my mini-website, "The Hopi Project" at http://hartwilliams.com/no1t5.htm: "When is a Hopi Not A Hopi?," "Ancestral Lands," "How to Lie with Pictures," and "White Man’s Justice"] © 2000-2007 Hart Williams


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

A Question

To be explored at further length, but ....

So, how is front-loading the presidential primaries going to ensure that we don't get another Dubya?

Already, Tom Vilsack has dropped out of a race that normally wouldn't really begin until the fall of this year.

I fear that the greed and selfishness of the states that produced our greedy and selfish White House resident has now put the presidency for sale to the highest bidder.


Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Civil Rites, or The Beat(ing) Goes On

The newspaper lead spoke for itself:

December 5, 2002
Neighbors call tactics in drug raid militaristic

The [Eugene, Ore.] Register-Guard

The sound of heavy machinery, exploding grenades and blaring announcements cracked the early morning silence.

Neighbors looked out their windows Oct. 17 to see an armored truck rolling down the street. They saw at least 45 officers armed with shotguns and assault rifles entering a trio of houses, standing guard at alleyways and blocking traffic lanes.

Officers wouldn't explain to startled residents what was going on.

Police pulled four people - including a nude woman and another woman wearing only underpants and a T-shirt - from their beds and kept them in handcuffs in a room of one of the houses for several hours. One woman reported that an officer covered her head with a black fabric bag and removed it only when she agreed to cooperate....
The woman covered with the black bag was Marcella Monroe. And this wasn't Abu Gharib. It was in "progressive" "Bluejean" Oregon. The crime? Her ex-boyfriend had been caught growing several marijuana plants in Portland. The nude man with her was her husband, so the "boyfriend" aspect was already pretty clearly out of date had the astonishing mobilization of "shock troops" bothered doing their homework:

The raid involved some 59 heavily-armed police officers from the Oregon State Police, the Lane County Sheriff's Department, the Eugene Police Department, the Springfield Police Department, the Portland Police Bureau, and the Oregon National Guard, who swarmed into Eugene's Whiteaker neighborhood accompanied by a tank-like National Guard Light Armored Vehicle. Throwing flash-bang grenades that shook the windows in neighboring houses and kicking down doors, the marauders broke into three homes, detaining two couples. Marcella Monroe and Tam Davage and Elizabeth Redetzke and Jor Havens were dragged naked from their beds by masked and armored police, then held for hours as police ransacked their homes. Police placed a black hood over Monroe's head until she agreed to cooperate. No evidence of a marijuana grow operation was found, but that didn't stop police from arresting all four and threatening to seize their homes. State prosecutors eventually dropped all charges.

There you go, Civil Rites and Wrongs in that world that "changed after 9/11."

Except that it didn't change there at all. It was an ongoing atrocity in the lunatic "war on drugs" that kicked into highest lunacy as a GOP tactic in the 1986 off-year elections. And which rolls on, grinding people and the bill of rights underneath it.

Think of it: massive surveillance programs, international military and paramilitary raids, bloody battles in South America, automatic forfeiture of vehicles and property "without due process of law" justified by the Supreme Court; massive propaganda campaigns, billions for herbicidal spraying, helicopter surveillance, armored vehicles, SWAT teams, advanced weapons, and, finally, raids like this one?

When did we agree to this suspension of rights? And did anyone notice how easy it made the further "Patriot Act" style suspensions of civil rights possible.

A nightmarish civil rights case has been reported this weekend in the New York TIMES, that the New York Police Department launched its own surveillance program, nationally, infiltrating and reporting on political groups!

David Cohen [was] the deputy police commissioner for intelligence. Mr. Cohen, a former senior official at the Central Intelligence Agency, was "central to the N.Y.P.D.'s efforts to collect intelligence information prior to the R.N.C.," Gerald C. Smith, an assistant corporation counsel with the city Law Department, said in a federal court filing ... Cohen contended that surveillance of domestic political activities was essential to fighting terrorism. "Given the range of activities that may be engaged in by the members of a sleeper cell in the long period of preparation for an act of terror, the entire resources of the N.Y.P.D. must be available to conduct investigations into political activity and intelligence-related issues," Mr. Cohen wrote in an affidavit dated Sept. 12, 2002.

N.Y.P.D. undercover officers were infiltrating groups as far away as Oregon and New Mexico!

The NY TIMES (ibid.):

... New York undercover officers were active themselves in at least 15 places outside New York -- including California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montreal, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington, D.C. -- and in Europe.

Good ghod. Who set up New York City as a sovereign nation? And who is this ex-spook running the rogue spy network? The New York POST's vile Steve Dunleavy has already defended the outrageous Gestapo-style program, by belittling the NY TIMES for even reporting it.

Do you wonder where that came from? Do you think it came out of the blue? We started breaking down the firewall between spying and domestic policework with the drug war of the mid-Reagan 80's. Now, it's coming home to roost.

In spades.

Here's a poster that ought to scare the hell out of you when you consider WHY all these women are in prison all of a sudden:

The Drug War's Effect on Women
U.S. women in prison 1980-2005

The greatest reason for the increase has been the punitive "mandatory minimums" that were shoved through in the late Reagan (post-Alzheimer's)and Daddy Bush jingoisms.

Er, I mean administrations.

According to the Action Committee for Women in Prison:

With the advent of mandatory sentencing laws in the mid-eighties, the female prison population has exploded throughout the country. Nationwide the female prison population grew by 592% from 12, 279 in 1977 to 85, 031 in 2001.... More women are incarcerated for non-violent drug offenses than for any other crime. In California 78 % of women are incarcerated for non-violent crimes which are usually drug related....

[Learn more at Amnesty International, USA. ]

Although everybody went to jail, no one was imprisoned. But that Hydra lurked underneath the whole debacle -- for debacle it clearly was. Non-violent, sleeping, naked people in Eugene, Oregon were subjected to the sort of midnight smash-and-grab operation that would become commonplace in Iraq beginning the following spring.

And, sadly, the response has been every bit as "ho-hum" for it happening here as it has over there. (After all, you might recall that we were ONLY after Saddam Hussein. The other 100,000 to 200,000 dead, wounded, maimed and injured were merely 'collateral damage.')

But this was here, in the "Land Of the Free" on the "Left Coast," in PeeCee Oregon!

None of this massive response of grenades, M-16s, armored vehicles and, literally "masked men," or "men in black," would have been possible, however, without billions of congressional dollars out of Washington, D.C. spent to create this massive paramilitary response.

Response to what? To knowing someone who had grown pot plants in Portland.

I have not taken any time here to speculate on what it's like to be held, naked or nearly so, handcuffed and probably interrogated for HOURS after being awakened by the sound of your door being busted down and

But that's not the beating that's still going on.

There is something scary already in the fact that the newspaper article is dated December 2, 2002, when the actual raid took place on October 17th, 2002.

It bespeaks a police state gone mad, that such an astonishing display of police firepower didn't rise to the level of "newsworthy" until it was admitted that there was NO REASON FOR IT!

Got that?

They sent in the marines because some imbecile judge thought that because a married woman's ex-boyfriend 110 miles away was growing pot, she must be. There's a terrorist "cell" for you.

Oh? Don't think it's a terrorist cell? Then how would you differentiate the response from what WOULD be the response had they uncovered a "terrorist cell" with explosives planning to blow up, say, a bunch of bridges in Portland?

Thank god they didn't have unpaid parking tickets.

No: I need you to focus, because at this point, you aren't horrified. You aren't freaked out. You might not particularly even be all that interested. So what? Damned hippies, right?

The abuse that still continues is this:

Tam Davage and Marcella Monroe filed suit in federal court for actions that were clearly outrageous.

Outrageous, that is, to anyone except federal lawyers.

Because this case REMAINS unsettled. "You don't need to make a federal case out of it," seems less a cliché here than a Kafkaesque curse.

Having raped their sense of security, of living in the "land of the free," the selfsame government has defended itself and delayed any attempt at justice for over four years, and we're coming up in October on FIVE.

Five years without justice for an egregious overstepping of all reasonable law enforcement, five years after a misguided pogrom against a non-addictive plant. Six years after two buildings in New York were hit with hijacked jets and law vanished, justice disappeared, civil rights took a powder, and Big Brother established himself (perhaps permanently) in the White House.

Five years!

And five years of Tam and Marcella and Elizabeth and Jor's lives have been stolen, in addition to that night of horrors. What would you feel, had it happened to you? Somebody you knew was busted, and in the middle of the night you were dragged from your bed and black bagged like something straight out of V for Vendetta?

Or Abu Gharib.

Or Gitmo.

And the abuse goes on. Those five years can never be returned. And the trust can never be fully repaired.

What trust?

The trust that we live in a country of laws and not of men. That we live -- as the slimy "House Managers" beat their hypocrites' chests during the impeachment -- under the "Rule of Law."

And that there is justice to be found in our Courts, our "Justice System," and in our "Law Enforcement."

Just think, the Chief Law Enforcement Officer of the Land (As the US Attorney General has been rightly characterized) is in the middle of a scandal relating to, perhaps, selective and political prosecutions, and CERTAINLY, has been caught, dead to rights, lying to Congress and to We, the People.

So, tell me, WHERE is justice in the United States of America? Where is the "Rule of Law" in the "Land of the Free"? Where is that "Home of the Brave" if every citizen knows that he can get the special "Gitmo" treatment at any time, for any reason?

I still have the First Amendment, until they pry my keyboard from my cold, dead fingers. And I ask you this:

How can this abomination of lawless abuse of power still be defended going on five years after the fact?

Oh, and while you're at it, riddle me this: How is it that on the Eighteenth Anniversary of the Exxon Valdez incident, Exxon has yet to pay a penny in damages?

Shame pole unveiled in Cordova on anniversary of Exxon Valdez spill
Associated Press, 03/26/2007 12:28:11 PM AKDT

A totem pole designed to mock Exxon Mobil on the anniversary of the largest oil spill in U.S. history was unveiled Friday in Cordova.

The trunk of yellow cedar was carved by Mike Webber of Cordova. On the pole are sea ducks, a sea otter and eagle floating dead on a slick of oil. Also pictured is a boat for sale, commemorating fishermen who went belly up.

Webber and others believe Exxon broke a promise by refusing to pay affected Alaskans billions of dollars in punitive damages. An Anchorage federal jury awarded thousands of plaintiffs five billion dollars in punitive damages in 1994, but Exxon appealed and the case has been mired in court ever since...

The way things have been going, carving a totem pole seems the most rational response anyone's come up with. Whether you think it has a chance in hell of working or not, you have to admit it's better than what we're seeing in the "justice" system.

And, at least it's something you can look at without your stomach wrenching in horror.

Four years and five months later, the same system that pulled that admittedly unjustified "black bag" raid on four innocent and harmless citizens continues to abuse at least two of them over it. And it steals their lives, as surely as if they'd been taken in secret to Guantanimo.

Gitmo abuses? Here in Oregon, I only have to look down the street.


[*Note: While I have met Tam Davage and Marcella Monroe socially, I have never discussed this case with them. My perception comes entirely from what has been reported.]

Monday, March 26, 2007

Thermopylae to Salamis

"Evidently Herodotus comes into and goes out of fashion on a regular basis..."
Here is a virtual reprint of Skiing Uphill from 2005, talking about the final end of the second Persian Invasion. The movie "300" is making waves these days, and I've referred to it* in this blog before, but I thought you might like to know how the invasion finally ended. The Spartans held off the Persians long enough for the Greek city-states to integrate their militias. The defeat at the Battle of Platea effectively ended the "Asian" land threat to the West until Constantinople fell on Tuesday, May 29, 1453, and finally stopped the defeat of the Turks at the gates of Vienna on September 11 and September 12, 1683.

[* The invasion, not the movie, although I have referred to a referral to the movie. See "They Get Their Own Facts" from last week.]

Ten years before, the combined Greek forces had met the Persians on the Plains of Marathon and defeated them, as Xerxes' father, Darius was forced to retreat in humiliation (490 BC). Xerxes second invasion was as much a matter of Persian pride as anything else. His order that the Hellespont be whipped after a storm wiped out the Persian pontoon bridge is an ancient Western cliche of hubris.

One member of the famed Athenian "barefoot" battalion was later found guilty of corrupting the youth of Athens and was executed by lethal libation, as chronicled by a youngster named Plato in the Phaedo. This time (481 BC), the Greek navies had to deal with the Persian invasion fleet, probably the largest armada ever gathered up to that time.

This is the denouement, even though it was before the 300 Spartans fell at Thermopylae. And how the Athenians faced THEIR "terror." (As in "war on" etc.) The governorship which is referred to is that of the state of Oregon.

-- HW
Sunday, July 10, 2005

Friday, we started talking on the radio about the "War on Terror" (or, as Bush enunciates it, the "War on Terra" -- which is more to the point). And while there was not enough time to go into it, we did get to the matter that the war only "succeeded" by keeping us terrified -- on both the "good" side and on the "bad" side.

Now, I'm going to go a bit afield, but I assure you that this will make sense by the end.

After receiving my THIRD review copy of Barry Strauss' history, "THE BATTLE OF SALAMIS, The Naval Encounter that Saved Greece -- And Western Civilization," I kind of figured I'd better read it quick, before my house fills with review copies and I have to start a small distributorship just to get rid of the excess. Not being so commercially inclined, I read it.

It is a 'good' book, although not one that I'd recommend unreservedly. The story is an important one, and if you don't know it, you should, for our entire tradition of Western Liberal Democracy faced then its darkest hour.

Strauss is an engaging writer, and there are passages in it that burn with lambent fire. But it is a decidedly flawed narrative, and you need to have a few filters set before you start to read it. Still, it IS worth reading, and far more worth your time than that abomination "TROY" that's playing on the premium cable channels this month.

Now, here's the bad news:

Strauss' use of pseudo-novelistic effects is particularly grating: the pretended knowledge of what is in a "character's" mind; the "set the scene" descriptions, and the rest of the phony dramatic clutter that poisons so much of modern historical writing all are flaws that cannot be ignored. There is also a tendency to gush about how wonderful some point is, or how awful some other thing is.

And some of this is, perhaps, necessary. To write a book about one battle, some padding may be required, and I think there is a good deal of padding in the book. I tend to agree on Strauss' enthusiasms, but I don't believe them to be history: the past is what it was, not what it is today.

Strauss' tokenism regarding Queen Artemisia, endlessly praising her because she's a woman, and how he needs to bring things into "modern" context is particularly galling, and gives a clue that too much ideological bias has rose-colored his glasses to take him as entirely authoritative -- most especially since, by the end, Artemisia emerges as one of the most vicious and unscrupulous villainesses since Snow White's evil stepmother. History has been warped to contemporary ideological needs, a sure tipoff that things may not be entirely "fair and balanced."

Naturally, this bit player is prominent on the back cover blurb, and in the Press Release, evidently so that the "women's market" will buy the book. Suffice it to say that Artemisia could have been left out of the story entirely without fundamentally affecting our understanding of the Battle of Salamis -- a sure tipoff that demographics have triumphed over scholarship. How sad.

And there is the inevitable internal debating that is less an illumination than an annoyance. For instance, at one point, he engages in a long, pointless blither as to whether the Greeks had a navy of 378 ships, 368 ships or 400 ships. Several pages later, he notes that the Persian fleet had "well over 100,000 men," which begs the question, who CARES exactly how many ships the Greeks had? The difference between a high of 400 and a low of 368 seems so inconsequential as to be meaningless. Quick! Imagine 400 ships. Now, imagine the same scene with only 368 ships.

I do not know if it is Postmodernism or Television that has turned our scholars into nitwits, but the fact that clear thinking has all but vanished from our land is self-evident. That no editor said "This is pointless" and blue-penciled the offending passage (and others) is a testament to the loss of professionalism in publishing that has attended my entire writing career. Such a passage would never have "made the cut" before 1970, say.

Finally, he relies very heavily on Herodotus (the 'father' of History) which is fine, except that he's constantly defending Herodotus as a good historian against a sea of detractors in some debate to which we are not privy. Evidently Herodotus comes into and goes out of fashion on a regular basis. Plutarch and the playwright Aeschylus are cited, abetted by various contemporary and archaeological sources, but, fundamentally, it's Herodotus. (There is a long acknowedgement of all the books ABOUT Herodotus that the author has read).

At least, Aeschylus actually fought at the battle, as a 45-year-old soldier, manning the shore to assist Greek survivors and spear Persians swimming away from wrecks. (A decade before, he fought at the Battle of Marathon, as well). But Strauss is not keen on Aeschylus.

All right: now that I've finished snarking, let's look at the story, which is one of our most important NON-mythological inheritances from Greece, and which is eerily contemporary, as history repeats itself over and over again. (Strauss would undoubtedly disagree with the hoary wisdom of the old cliche, but history DOES repeat itself with frightening regularity).

The "Terror" in this case was Persia. After Darius had invaded Greece a decade before, only to be turned back at the Battle of Marathon (whose distance from Athens still forms the distance of our modern-day Marathons), Darius' son, Xerxes returned to Greece with the largest and most ethnically diverse army seen in the world to that time, to avenge his father, and finish the job.

Avenge his father. Finish the job. Sound familiar?

The famously bickering Greeks manage to form a small impossibly-rare coalition, Athens and Sparta standing side by side with a handful of other city-states, but the majority of the Greeks fought for the Persians. Only twenty-two Greek states were represented on the "Greek" side at Salamis.

"All told, there were fifteen hundred Greek city-states. Yet only a relative handful -- only thirty-one city-states -- joined the coalition against Persia. In fact, more Greek city-states fought on the other side. Persia was too strong and loyalty to the idea of Greece too weak to make the Hellenic League any more powerful. Athens, Sparta, and the few other city-states that stood up to Persia spoke harshly of Greek traitors, but most Greeks would have shrugged their shoulders at the charge." [p. 16-17]

And so, the few legendary Greeks began the defense of their homeland that would stop the Persian advance once and for all, and lead to the "Golden Age" of Greek Civilization and democracy that still influences our Western systems of government to this day.

We are astonished at the sheer brass of these few, proud freemen standing against the largest empire that the world had yet seen, refusing to capitulate to the easy path of a light Persian rule and tribute, but, instead, staking their lives, families and cities on being able to defeat the technologically superior, vastly more numerous and immeasurably more battle-tested Persian coalition, with troops from as far away as Afghanistan, Africa and Egypt.

The Greeks surprised the Persians at Artemesium, their 271 warships charging a Persian fleet of 700 (with another 200 coming up from the south) and inflicting severe losses on the Persians. The Persians started with about 1400 triremes -- triple-tiers of oars on very fast, but very narrow and not very seaworthy warships. By the time they got to Salamis, after Greek attacks and devastating storm losses, the Persian fleet numbered around 650 triremes.

The hero of the piece is Themistocles, the Athenian politician/warrior. And the story really is about a man who has to trick his political opponents, his city, his fellow city-states, and, finally, the Persians, to win the battle.

The reader is reminded that it is a sad truth of democracies that one must often battle as obstinately with one's own "troops" as with the enemy.

Opposed at virtually every turn by bickering politicians, citizens, admirals and other Greeks, Themistocles somehow managed to bring about the battle of Salamis at the time and place of his choosing, his last trick having pushed half the Persian fleet into the narrow strait where their lighter, more maneuverable triremes fought at a disadvantage, where the heavier Athenian and Greek triremes held an advantage of a battle of ships ramming ships.

The various coalitions were subject to treachery, and changing sides at the drop of a hat, and the Persians had been highly successful at bribing Greeks to switch sides at crucial moments. Themistocles played on this, too, brilliantly.

"The key to misinformation is telling people what they want to hear. [Themistocles' slave] Sincinnus did precisely this. Sincinnus did not tell the Persians to fight a naval battle at Salamis. He did not need to ... [he] did nothing more than to precipitate the timing." [p. 116]

And we note the manner in which Ahmed Chalabi was able to convince the Bushies to invade Iraq, by telling them that the Iraqis would welcome them, famously, "with flowers." This little trick of misinformation works quite well in the present-day, as well.

But the finest hour of the war, and the real crux of what I'm getting at is the decision that the city of Athens took, and when they carried it out, after learning that the Spartans under King Leonidas had died to the last man at Thermopylae delaying the Persian army.

I want you to read this, but I want you to think about the United States of America under "attack" and our response to that attack: fear, panic and terror. The Direktor of Fatherland Sekurity, after last week's London attack, told us that it was a "Terror Alert," or, literally, that we should be terrified to an Orange extent were we on a bus or train, but only terrified Yellow otherwise.

And it continues:

Homeland Chief: 'No Perfect Security'
Washington Post - July 10
WASHINGTON -- People taking mass transit face a risk of attacks like the explosions in London last week even though train and bus security has improved in recent years, top homeland security officials said Sunday.
or, just from Googling today's news:

The Observer
'Real threat' forces evacuation
CNN International - 5 hours ago
Cars pass a motorway warning sign near Birmingham after thousands were evacuated from the city center. LONDON, England (CNN) -- Evacuation orders for the entertainment district of Britain's second-largest ...
20,000 evacuated in Birmingham terror alert - China Daily
Officials defend Birmingham evacuation - Financial Times
Compare this with the "terror alert" the Athenians faced in 480 B.C. (Straub doesn't use the current PC term B.C.E. or, "Before Current Era" I note.):

The largest army in the history of the world was now bearing down on Athens, unchecked and unstoppable on a cleared road, to execute the stated purpose of Xerxes to punish Athens, and they would most likely slaughter any Athenian found in the environs, or, at best, send them in chains to the slave-markets of the Middle East to be sold.

Were the Athenians terrified Yellow?


The Athenians voted to evacuate the entire city-state (about 150,000, says Strauss).

"Nothing so became the land of the Athenians as the manner of their leaving it. In light of the common criticism of democracy as soft and submissive, it is worth appraising the price that democratic Athens was willing to pay for freedom. The Athenian assembly voted not only to send its young men out to battle but to uproot its elderly, its women, and its children ... Later generations would revere the decision for exile and inscribe and reinscribe it in stone. They celebrated its daring, and they were right. While most Greeks surrendered, while their Peloponnesian allies tried to abandon them, the Athenians thought it a high honor to resist Persia. Rather than flee Greece, says Herodotus, "they stayed behind and waited courageously for the enemy to invade their land." The day they passed a motion to evacuate Athens, the Athenians decided that not only their soldiers and rowers stood on the watchtowers of history, they all did." [p. 65]
And, with few exceptions, they all did.

The Athenians were anything BUT terrorized.

Contrast this with our democracy and its response to terror. Did the Athenians panic? Did the Athenians give in to their very real and debilitating fears? And, more importantly, do we have the courage of the Athenians? Are we willing to all man the watchtowers?

Therein hangs our tale.

Oh, and Artemisia? She escaped being rammed at the battle of Salamis by treacherously turning her ship and sinking the Persian ship next to her, thus convincing the Greek commander bearing down on her that she had switched sides. None of the unfortunate ship's crew survived (perhaps due to the archers on board the Queen's trireme), and in the fog of war -- and the "spin" of Artemisia's circle -- Xerxes was convinced that she had fought gallantly in the disaster that Salamis was for the Persian navy. She gained greater favor in the Persian empire. The Persian admiral, by contrast, was given a spindle and distaff. "In Greece, it was a symbol of womanhood. So to give a distaff to a naval commander was surely an insult." [p. 215]

Artemisia was given the prize for bravery in battle. "The story is told that Artemisia received a full suit of Greek armor as a sign of her achievement." [ibid.]

Not exactly what one would call a feminist role model.

Unless, of course, one is running for governor.


No. Seriously: Courage.