Opinion

Peter d'Errico: Many Indian warriors fought against America





"“What’s wrong with this picture?” I asked: A pow wow grand entry, the Eagle Staff closely followed by the U.S. stars and stripes and the POW/MIA flag.

What does the U.S., flag mean at an Indian pow wow? How is it that warriors who defend Indian territory are mixed up with soldiers who fight for the United States? I remember one pow wow where the M.C. listed great warriors of the past who “fought for America.” He included Crazy Horse and Geronimo!

Probably everyone knows Geronimo and Crazy Horse did not fight for America, but against American troops, just like Tecumseh, Pontiac, and many others. The M.C. was mixed up. But is it also mixed up to commemorate modern-day Indian soldiers as Indian warriors?

The answer I sometimes hear is that Indian warriorhood includes any kind of war, and since Indians are incorporated into the United States, when they fight in the U.S. military, they fight for Indian nations, too."

Get the Story:
Peter d'Errico: U.S. Military History, Pow Wow Flags, Freedom and Fears (Indian Country Today 9/11)

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