The North Dakota oil pipeline protests turned violent, the news media say! And what’s the first thing they tell us?
Morton County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Donnell Preskey said four private security guards and two guard dogs were injured after several hundred protesters confronted construction crews Saturday afternoon at the site just outside the Standing Rock Sioux reservation. One of the security officers was taken to a Bismarck hospital for undisclosed injuries. The two guard dogs were taken to a Bismarck veterinary clinic, Preskey said.
Security guards and attack dogs got hurt. Wait…why were there even dogs there, and what were those dogs doing? Don’t the bulldozers tearing up the countryside count as “violent”? What about the pepper spray getting fired into people’s faces?
Then they mention the casualties among the unarmed protesters, which law enforcement tries to pretend didn’t happen.
Tribe spokesman Steve Sitting Bear said protesters reported that six people had been bitten by security dogs, including a young child. At least 30 people were pepper-sprayed, he said. Preskey said law enforcement authorities had no reports of protesters being injured.
I’ll spare you the photo of the Indian child with a face lacerated and bloodied by dogs. Instead, I’ll just recommend that you watch Amy Goodman’s on-the-scene coverage of the protest.
I’ll also show you another scene of unimaginable violence. This is what happened when an oil pipeline ruptured in the Moscow River last year.
Now why wouldn’t the Indians want that kind of spectacular spectacle in their water supply?
Hey, there’s nothing to fear from a pipeline! Except for sudden unexplained explosions and a flame-thrower like geyser of flame that can incinerate people 200 meters away. As happened in New Mexico this weekend, killing 10 people (5 of them children).
The 30-inch pipeline exploded around 5:30 a.m. Saturday, and left a crater about 86 feet long, 46 feet wide and 20 feet deep. Police say the resulting fire probably lasted 30 to 40 minutes. It reportedly was visible about 20 miles to the north in Carlsbad, N.M.
Authorities said one end of the ruptured line became a virtual flame-thrower, showering fire on the victims camped beneath a bridge about 200 yards away.
“The evidence out there at the scene indicates it was horrendously hot,” State Police Capt. John Balderston said. “It incinerated everything in its path. If it burned for as long as we think it burned, that explains the extensive damage to the vehicles and to the property and people.
The pipeline company doesn’t see the problem.
John Somerhalder, president of the pipeline group of El Paso Energy, the parent company of El Paso Natural Gas Co., says his company is cooperating fully with investigators. But he adds he believes the explosion was an accident.
“We saw no indication there was third party damage or foul play,” Somerhalder said. “It is, was a very major tragedy that occurred [Saturday], and it occurred as a result of a rupture of one of our pipelines.”
It was just an accident! No one is at fault! Sure, we occasionally incinerate small children, but you certainly can’t blame El Paso Energy!
Does anyone still wonder why the people of the Standing Rock reservation might be a teensy bit irate at a pipeline being built across their water supply?