DAPL Tensions Heat Up as National Guard Deploys 'Observational' Missile Launchers

The National Guard has deployed missile launchers to a “critical” Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) site, while the pipeline’s parent company seeks to quash an environmental review of the project—two developments that hint at the possibility of renewed tensions between DAPL’s opponents and state authorities.

Reports emerged Tuesday that the National Guard had sent two surface-to-air missile launchers to a “critical work site” for the controversial pipeline, which water protectors said appeared to be guarding a drill pad. National Guard spokesman William Prokopyk told the Daily Beast the missiles were not armed and had no authorization to be, with the Morton County Sheriff’s Department adding in a Facebook statement that they were “strictly for observation of ungoverned encampments to help protect private property and maintain public safety.”

Still, the presence of military weapons is likely to increase tensions between authorities and the Standing Rock Sioux, who have camped out at the North Dakota construction sites for months to prevent the pipeline from being completed. At least three people were arrested and tear-gassed earlier this week during a prayer walk at the proposed Missouri River drill site near Cannon Ball.

Law enforcement and private security teams have been lambasted for their violent crackdowns on the peaceful protesters, including using attack dogs and impact munitions.

Click Here: geelong cats guernsey 2019

The Beast‘s David Axe noted:

Meanwhile, the company behind the project, the Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), has reportedly asked a federal judge to block the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from launching a full environmental review of the pipeline’s crossing of a Missouri River reservoir in North Dakota.

The Bismarck Tribune reports:

The effort comes after a significant victory for the Standing Rock Sioux, when the corps in December denied ETP a construction permit until a full review could be carried out.

Water protectors have been urging supporters to lobby the corps to conduct a full review before President-elect Donald Trump, who has officially come out in favor of the pipeline, takes office.

Reuters reported in December that Trump’s advisers may push to privatize Indigenous lands for easier access to oil and gas reserves.

Chase Iron Eyes, a Native American activist and attorney, tweeted in response to the news, “Until DAPL is gone. Until the blockade & most militarized corp law enf since Occupy, Ferguson & Wounded Knee is gone, we will stand & fight.”

Our work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License. Feel free to republish and share widely.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *