As more and more signs point towards the government trying to strong-arm Dakota Access Pipeline protectors and activists in the coming days, a movement called Veterans Stand for Standing Rock plan on lending their help and their bodies.
As many as 2,000 veterans planned to gather next week at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota to serve as “human shields” for protesters who have for months clashed with the police over the construction of an oil pipeline, organizers said.
The veterans’ plan coincides with an announcement on Tuesday by law enforcement officials that they would begin blocking supplies, including food, from entering the main protest camp after an evacuation order from the governor, according to Reuters. But protesters have vowed to stay put.
The veterans’ efforts also coincide with the Army Corps of Engineers plans to close off access to the movement’s campsite by creating the Orwellian-named “free speech zone.”
“Yeah, good luck with that,” Michael A. Wood Jr., an founder of the veterans’ event, said in an interview.
Wood Jr. helped to organize the event and was bowled over when, in asking for 500 veterans sign up, he found himself having to cap the event at 2,000. The veterans participating want the U.S. government to reveal what it is really about. Are they going to continue totalitarian and violently oppressive tactics or are they going to recognize that the citizens did not and still do not agree with this pipeline plan?