published originally in Truthout
By Four Arrows
Yesterday, November 10, was the birthday of the US Marine Corps. Today is Veteran's Day. These back-to-back days are filling me with mixed emotions. On the one hand, there is a sense of pride and a continuing sense of loyalty to the Corps. On the other hand, there is the knowledge that the Marine Corps mostly works for the corporations and always has, just like the National Guard is now working for Energy Transfer Partners here at Standing Rock. General Smedley Butler, the late Marine Corps Commandant and two-time congressional medal of honor winner, documents this in his book War is a Racket.
When I pray on finding truth from the knowledge and the feelings I have, I understand why I can say we should stop thanking our veterans for their service and instead solicit them and their wisdom to be leaders in the peace movement. It is not a coincidence that the Veterans for Peace flag marks the major veteran's presence at Očhéthi Šakówiŋ (the main camp here at Standing Rock that is named for the even Council Fires of the seven nations).