Policing Indigenous Movements

SKU: 9781773630120

Andrew Crosby, Jeffrey Monaghan
Grade Levels:
Eleven, Twelve, College, University
Algonquin, Mi'kmaq, Multiple Nations, Wet'suwet'en
Book Type:
Fernwood Publishing
Copyright Data:

Sale price$25.00


Policing Indigenous Movements: Dissent and the Security State documents the country’s national security systems and their methods when policing Indigenous activists and organizations as they demonstrate and seek to protect Indigenous territories and resources in the face of government-supported resource extraction. In measures to protect the land, prevent pipeline development and fracking, land and water defenders have created a national discussion about these issues and successfully slowed the rate of resource extraction. Authors Andrew Crosby, coordinator of the Ontario Public Interest Research Group, and Jeffrey Monaghan, a criminology professor, both at Ottawa’s Carleton University, have put together a disturbing, painstakingly documented exploration of the role played by Canada’s national security agencies in watching, harassing, and criminalizing indigenous people involved in land rights struggles. The authors uncover internal communications that paint an unflattering picture of a Canadian government that, working hand in hand with industry, has adopted an antiterrorism approach in its relationship with First Nations peoples. The language usually reserved for terrorists (extremism, violence, radicalization) is consistently employed by state bureaucracies to describe peaceful Indigenous rights blockades and vigils. The book is divided into sections on specific conflicts: opposition to Northern Gateway Pipelines, a British Columbia pipeline and shale gas fracking in Elsipogtog First Nation, New Brunswick, resistance from the Quebec Algonquins of Barriere Lake community to federal attacks on its traditional governance structures, and the decentralized, influential Idle No More movement. It is a well-argued study that clearly contrasts respectful government rhetoric with a coordinated strategy that views Indigenous people as a potentially dangerous population who must be watched and, where possible, neutralized. The account is somewhat academic in style, but this work is an accessible must-read for all Canadians concerned about respectful relations with Indigenous people and the decline of civil rights in the war-on-terror era. Highly recommended.

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