Last year, I had the opportunity to meet leaders from two indigenous
Amazonian tribes, including the dynamic Shuar leader Domingo Ankuash.
The pair had come to draw attention to the horrific impact
of Ecuadoran oilfield development in their territories.
The following day, Ankuash and others spoke at the annual stockholders
meeting of ConocoPhillips. (Yes, Domingo, Bob says he loves
According to Amazon Watch, ConocoPhillips is at an ethical crossroads
since taking over Burlington Resources' polluted properties there. No
promises came from the stockholders meeting, but afterward company
officials said the parcels were "under review." Most recently, Ecuador has
declared it will stop allowing drilling in such protected
Now, the U.S. Congress is poised to up-or-down a "Free" Trade Agreement
in Peru, where the Peruvian government has actively been inking new oil
contracts with Texas-based Hunt
Oil Company, among others, agreements that are sure to
decimate the indigenous community in a rush of development and
destruction, to say nothing of its impact on the already-wheezing
"lungs of the world," as the Amazon is often referred to.
Last week, energy companies
signed contracts with Peru's Ministry of Energy and Mines for nine
different oil concessions in the Peruvian Amazon, many of them
intruding on the territories of isolated indigenous groups or
overlapping official or proposed Indigenous Reserves. The news comes as the
U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
and World Bank's International Finance Corporation (IFC) consider more
than $1 billion in public financing to the controversial
Camisea gas project, led by Texas-based Hunt Oil, in the southern
Peruvian Amazon. Environmental and human rights groups warn that the
mistakes of Camisea, including major social, cultural, and health
impacts on local communities, and forced contact with isolated
indigenous peoples are likely to be repeated in the new concessions. "The lives of these
peoples in voluntary isolation are in grave danger due to these
contracts and, if the [Peruvian] state doesn't meet its obligation to
protect them, it will be condoning a new aggression against the
fundamental rights of our isolated indigenous brothers," said AIDESEP
President Alberto Pizango Chota.
Where are SA's delegates on the issue?
Charlie "The Gonzalator" Gonzalez voted in favor of the FTA, while Ciro
fought it along with the majority of freshmen Dems. (Big Ups to you,
Ciro! Remember when the X-News Editorial Board slams
you, citing the Cato bastards out of all the drunk-thunk
oil-funded tanks, you know must be doing something right by the
Now with the vote in the Senate, good luck swinging those
noose-knotters Kay "Out On" Bailey and John Cornyn. But might as well
send them some last-minute encouragement: Kay
But I can't help but wonder, is the real multinational effort here
really aimed at snuffing out the original peoples themselves? According
to this Smithsonian
feature, without the forest's protectors the "lungs"
themselves would inevitably falter to commerce. Then its nothing but
miles and miles of Spirit-forsaken "resource" to rape. Free-market
gluttony until Collapse?