Thousands of Veterans Heading to Standing Rock

Barbed-wire fences coated with frozen water.

Barbed-wire fences coated with frozen water.

Published December 1, 2016

by Darren Thompson

FT. YATES, NORTH DAKOTA—This weekend, thousands of military veterans are expected to travel and stand in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in its battle against the Dakota Access Pipeline. With recent accounts of police misconduct against water protectors a call went out for any and all veterans to make their way to the Standing Rock Sioux Indian Reservation.

“We are calling all veterans to come to the frontline,” said Standing Rock Tribal Veteran Representative Brenda White Bull. “We want to show the world that we are peaceful only armed with prayer and unity and hope the authorities that be hear our voice to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline.”

A retired United States Marine Corps Veteran, White Bull emphasized the gathering will be a peaceful and prayerful event and will be a non-violent demonstration.

“We intend no harm and we will be unarmed,” continued White Bull.

There is a scheduled briefing at the Sitting Bull College in Ft. Yates, ND on Saturday, December 3 at 6:00 PM where those gathering will be updated on the events that have occurred by Standing Rock Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II and other community leaders.

Recent announcements by the State of North Dakota to stop vehicles suspected to heading towards camp have caused concern for many traveling from out of State, but Governor Dalrymple announced last night that police would not be targeting people heading to camp. The ACLU put out an announcement that if any vehicle is stopped, fined or questioned if they are heading to camp to contact via email at

As many as 2,100 veterans from all branches of the military have registered for the gathering according to social media including olympic Gold Medalist Billy Mills and members of the United States Congress and many more are expected to attend.

Darren Thompson can be reached at 605-545-5470 or email at

Darren Thompson (Ojibwe/Tohono O’odham) is a Native American flute player and writer from the Lac du Flambeau Ojibwe Reservation in Northern Wisconsin. He contributes to Native Peoples Magazine, Native News Online and For more information please visit

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