Opinion

Peter d'Errico: Raymond Yowell resumes treaty rights push





"The Western Shoshone have been litigating the rights to their homeland since at least 1951, when a claim was filed, purportedly in their behalf, before the United States Indian Claims Commission (ICC). A full statement of this history is in Elmer R. Rusco, “Historic Change in Western Shoshone Country: The Establishment of the Western Shoshone National Council and Traditionalist Land Claims,” 16 American Indian Quarterly 337 (1992).

Raymond Yowell’s pro se lawsuit against the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is the latest effort in this struggle to make the United States live up to its treaty obligations. Not surprisingly, the federal court dismissed the suit. I say not surprising, because the dismissal is in line with prior decisions attacking Western Shoshone lands. The courts are at least consistent in their support for U.S. claims of domination over Indigenous nations.

The U.S. has endeavored for years to extinguish the territorial integrity of the Western Shoshone Nation. Yowell’s persistence in challenging this is a thorn in the side of the federal government."

Get the Story:
Peter d'Errico: Raymond Yowell: A Courageous Indigenous Leader (Indian Country Today 3/7)

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