Operation “MYGALE” and “contraband” tobacco

The following is an edited transcription of an interview with Kanenhariyo from Thursday March 31st. Kanenhariyo himself has been criminally targeted for participating in the Onkwehon:we tobacco industry. Here he gives an alternate take on “Operation Mygale” the operation run in collaboration with multiple state agencies and which Quebec Provincial Police consider to be their largest campaign against the Onkwehonwe tobacco industry. 

By Kanenhariyo

It needs to be pointed out that the police, both the RCMP, OPP and the SQ are in cahoots with the provincial governments and are actively working and running smear campaigns on the indigenous tobacco industry (similar to the one they ran on Gustafson lake) suggesting that Native tobacco is drug related, and that there’s terrorism, money laundering and all that stuff going on.

They’re running a smear campaign no different than George Bush and his bullshit weapons of mass destruction and putting people into fear so that they’ll support them. And we need to say that and point it out. There needs to be a counter voice saying “wait a minute, that’s not true we know it for a fact, because we’re here.”

The question we really need to ask is, “what is true in this case?” What’s true is that the Canadian government is utilizing the provincial and federal police officers to run illegal operations to try to squeeze out as much financial opportunity there is from indigenous communities, and to label anyone who has done any work or is willing to work with indigenous people as criminal. They are claiming indigenous freedom of economics as fraud.

There saying that we’re frauding the province, frauding the state. But in fact it’s the province and the state that are frauding the indigenous people by stealing.

They’ve taken every single economic opportunity that we’ve had and either usurped it and commercialized it so that we don’t have anything unique to be able to sell or trade. Corn, beans, squash, potatoes, canoes, sunglasses, half the medicines they use, all of those things, they’ve stolen. As well as the natural resources, fish, wood, agriculture, tobacco. In addition to that anything that we raise as an economic opportunity for ourselves they make illegal.

So we are stuck on the side of the road selling trinkets because it’s the only thing they couldn’t be bothered to do. The racism in Canada is so high that the non-indigenous population won’t come and shop here because it’s good. They’ll come here only if there’s an economic advantage to them. Which means that the only economic advantage that we can create is a tax one, and then it starts the loop over again.

So if Canada’s population wasn’t so racist and if its government wasn’t actively working to break international law and try and destroy us as a people, and make it so we can’t stand up, we wouldn’t be in this situation.

But now we’ve got the provincial police, both the OPP and the SQ as well as the RCMP, making up evidence and painting a picture with little tiny baby pieces of evidence they can find to suggest that there’s some kind of criminal activity here.

But what makes the tobacco criminal? Because it’s contrary to Canadian law, but here’s the problem. What about when its the police and the provinces and the federal government operating contrary to international law? Then isn’t it them who are the criminals?

What’s happening here with respect to the tobacco industry and actually building an economy and suggesting that it’s terrorism, that it’s organized crime, suggesting all of those things is no different from George Bush and all that bullshit about going into Iraq, Afghanistan and screaming “weapons of mass destruction” and trying to help the poor people to destroy the Taliban. What a bunch of shit. It was all lies and everybody knows it. Well this is no different.

The criminal elements here wear badges and they rob people. They use fear, they put out press releases that they’re hunting people with warrants. That’s called terrorism. That’s what this country does to indigenous peoples so they can steal more.

They don’t deserve the tobacco taxes in the first place. What they’re trying to steal is any indigenous economy. For some reason the people who came here as invaders, think that they have some sort of right.

If Canadians wanted to do something to support indigenous or Onkwehonwe people they would demand that the government would do something right for once. In their name, be fair. If Canadians are ashamed of their government which they should be, then they need to speak up and tell their government “you need to stop this. Stop persecuting these people, allow them to have a way.

You see this racism everywhere, you see it on all the news – that’s why CBC has to shut down comment sections on indigenous issues – because of the racism. It all boils down to the general belief that the Canadians are paying for indigenous people to live. When in fact if they would just allow us to make our own economy, we wouldn’t need anything.

If Canadians wanted to do something about this they would write to their MPs and they would write to the newspapers and say that this is horrible. It’s horrible that their policing agencies that are supposed to be dealing with real crimes and real issues are spending millions of dollars to falsify evidence and run anti-indigenous campaigns claiming tobacco is criminal. They should be doing their job, and worrying about the missing women. And helping people out of bad situations. That’s not what’s going on.

Canadians can also shop in indigenous communities because it’s the right thing to do like where they go and buy fair trade items. Instead of going along to the reserve because they can “get a deal”.

There’s all this racism that you hear about. As I was learning about racism, because I really didn’t understand the politics of it, there’s this talk about white privilege. Well we’ve got something else going on in Canada, and it’s called Canadian privilege. It’s like this belief that you have the privilege to interfere with other people that are here independently. And Canadians don’t have that privilege, no one gave it to them.

Just because their Queen and their Pope got some power written in a book (and for those of you not following me, I’m talking about the Bible), that doesn’t give them any privilege either. Being a Christian doesn’t give them privilege, being white doesn’t give them privilege, being Canadians doesn’t give them privilege, having a Canadian Constitution or the BNA act doesn’t give them any privilege, the Royal proclamation of 1763 gives them no privilege.

What’s going on here is illegal, and it’s disgusting, and everyone should be outraged and ashamed that it’s happening right in and amongst them. The same crap the George W. Bush did. And George Bush is wanted for war crimes. This is no different.

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