Bulletin: RCMP lead OPP arrest of 13 natives during crisis at Stirling Street development in Caledonia

UPDATE 1700 EST Sept 20/07: An OPP news release today says that only 9 were arrested during yesterday’s raid on the occupied Stirling Street development site in Caledonia. Other media reports had put the number as high as 18. The release also states that the OPP received assistance from the Hamilton Police Service, and not from the RCMP as reported here.

UPDATE 0233 EST Sept 20/07: See follow-up post, Who’s in charge – Six Nations Confederacy or Julian Fantino?

UPDATE 2350 EST Sept 19/07: This article reached #18 on the list of ‘Top Posts’ today on the WordPress system which consists of more than 1.4 million blogs.

UPDATE 1656 EST Sept 19/07: Reliable sources have reported to CaledoniaWakeUpCall that a plainclothes RCMP officer led OPP officers on a raid against the occupied Stirling Street construction site in Caledonia where Sam Gualtieri was assaulted, and arrested 13 natives. CWUC is also reporting that native leader Clyde Powless gave the go-ahead to the arrests. Why the OPP and RCMP needed Mr. Powless’ permission to enforce the law is not clear.
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2inch_voc_logo-url.jpgYesterday, we were at the Stirling Street development site with Joe Gualtieri (brother of the man who was severely beaten by a gang of native thugs) for a news conference to announce that Joe would be speaking at our ‘Remember Us’ March on Oct 8th. Joe called on all politicians, townspeople and tradespeople to support the march. [dial-up]  (See also Gary McHale re march. dial-up)

Afterwards, Joe told us the OPP had promised to provide security for his tradespeople beginning at 0900 today. Today, however, the OPP had not removed the native trespassers, so Joe told his workers to leave. A while later, the OPP asked all builders to vacate the site, but natives were allowed to remain. CaledoniaWakeUpCall then received reports from residents that natives were planting flags in various areas of Caledonia and starting fires.  

At 1539 I received a copy of an email sent by a Caledonia resident to Mayor Marie Trainer and Haldimand Council:

Dear Mayor Trainer and Council,

It seems that the OPP have lost control of the situation on Stirling Woods. This would not be a problem if it were somewhere in the country but it is in the middle of Caledonia. There are homes right in the development, beside the development and a whole street of homes backing onto the development.

I was by there at about 2 p.m. and Stirling Street is blocked off starting just west of Shoppers Drug Mart. There are again natives on the Stirling Street overpass on the bypass with flags hanging down and two police cruisers watching them. I was on the street next to the development and spoke to a lady who said she saw what looked like swat team going onto the site through the homes. This is unacceptable since there are small children living in this area. Now apparently there are native women on Stirling Street but the residents are not allowed.

If ever we needed a force that can end this it is right now. The OPP seem to be either afraid to intervene or unwilling or both. Every time we get the MELT team and ART team and the natives get to stay. This is just stupid.

We need the RCMP here right now and if needed we need the army to come in and end this. If these criminals get killed it is due to their own making.

The blood of good Haldimand residents will be on the hands of this County and the Ontario Liberals if this not stopped.

Caledonia resident

Other residents have reported to CaledoniaWakeUpCall that helicopters have been seen overhead. We have dispatched people to try to verify these reports and capture images.

Help your neighbours by helping us document events

If you have witnessed any incidents, or you have photos/video, please send them to Gary McHale at info@caledoniawakeupcall.com ASAP. DO NOT give original copies of evidence to the OPP without first making a copy and sending it to us; one of the biggest mistakes made by Ipperwash residents was turning over vital evidence to people and organizations they thought would help them only to discover that it was lost forever. One day the failures of the OPP and their Liberal masters will be explored and dissected in a courtroom, and your evidence will be needed.

Thank you for your help.

Mark Vandermaas, Editor
VoiceofCanada
info@voiceofcanada.ca 

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9 responses to “Bulletin: RCMP lead OPP arrest of 13 natives during crisis at Stirling Street development in Caledonia

  1. I am a fairly dedicated Liberal. However, if the Gualtieri family will publicly endorse the party that they think is best equipped to deal with the situation in Caledonia, I would be very likely to vote for the party they endorse.

    Check out my blog: http://www.bobkismet.com

    VoC REPLY: Hi Bob. I absolutely loved your article entitled ‘Caledonia May Bite McGuinty in the Hind-quarters.’ I think that the fact that you’re a long-time Liberal gives it a lot of credibility, at least for me. It tells me that McGuinty’s shameful attempts to blame the feds as his provincial police force refuses to enforce the law – today’s events notwithstanding – are offending every thinking person’s sensibilities.

    When I got involved in this struggle back in Oct 06, I made a movie called MARCH FOR FREEDOM to explain why I dragged my fat butt off the couch to help Gary McHale in his fight against to restore the rule of law. I included 2 quotes from Pierre Trudeau (definitely a Liberal!) regarding his decision to answer Bourassa’s call for military assistance during the FLQ crisis. Here’s one of them:

    “If a democratic society is to continue to exist, it must be able to root out the cancer of an armed, revolutionary movement that is bent on destroying the very basis of our freedom. For that reason the Government, following an analysis of the facts, including requests of the Government of Quebec and the City of Montreal for urgent action, decided to proclaim the War Measures Act. It did so at 4:00 a.m. this morning, in order to permit the full weight of Government to be brought quickly to bear on all those persons advocating or practising violence as a means of achieving political ends.”

    You don’t have to be Liberal or Conservative or NDP to know that what is happening in Ontario is just plain wrong, not to mention incredibly dangerous. You just have to be a caring human being with an IQ over 25.

    I’m not saying the military should come in now. First of all, if Dalton won’t have the OPP enforce the law, he’s certainly not going to call in the military to do a job best done by trained law enforcement officers. My only point is that even though Trudeau was a Liberal, he knew the importance of preserving respect for the law.

    I don’t know which party Joe Gualtieri is endorsing (pretty sure it’s not Dalton’s), but I can tell you that he IS endorsing our next protest event, the ‘Remember Us’ March, which will take place in Caledonia on Oct 8th. Even better, he has agreed to be a guest speaker. Here’s a link to our video of Joe’s statement, recorded yesterday at a press conference at the Stirling site.

    Thanks so much for writing, Bob. Nice to know there’s some ‘thinking Liberals’ out there. Mark

  2. Mary-Lou LaPratte

    Dear Mark,

    As the realist I am, I say tongue in cheek, I just cannot bring myself to believe that any Politician or McWimpy cried loud enough to have the OPP do their job. Without putting the air out of the balloon, I firmly believe the Six Nations requested help from the police because they could not control the thugs on the Stirling land, and don’t want to ruin a potential negotiation draft with the Feds, who are to respond within thirty days.

    Having said that, I am so excited to actually see the OPP do something to help the little guy held hostage that I really don’t care how it came about. We shall see in the future, if this is an isolated incident of OPP enforcing the law or whether our friend Julian had an Epiphany of sorts on his holiday and learned how to be a cop.

    I suggest readers go to CHML 900 and listen to Scott Thompson’s radio show while all this event was unfolding at the site. Kudos to you Mark for once again a great write up as events are unfolding.

    MLL

    VoC REPLY: Hi ML, you’re going to love Who’s in charge – Six Nations Confederacy or Julian Fantino? Thanks for the comment. Regards, Mark

  3. Is it just me or does anyone else think that todays arrests on Sterling St. will become a liberal political ploy to gather more votes on October 10? Watch them claim that you should vote for them because they put on a big show today.

    VoC REPLY: Hi xyxyxy (your mother must not have liked you very much 🙂 ) Great minds think alike, and fools seldom differ! If Dalton thinks this is going to change anything, he’s got another thing coming. Check out Who’s in charge – Six Nations Confederacy or Julian Fantino? Thanks for the comment. Regards, Mark

  4. It’s high time arrests were made. Here are the details:

    CALEDONIA, ON, Sept. 19 /CNW/ – The Ontario Provincial Police with the
    support and assistance of the Hamilton Police Service, attended the Stirling
    Woods Subdivision today and arrested 9 persons protesting on the site.
    Prior to the arrest, OPP gave all protestors the option of leaving the
    property on their own accord or being arrested and charged.
    The OPP removed protestors. Those arrested are facing criminal charges.
    Though the OPP respect everyone’s right to demonstrate peacefully, the
    OPP does not condone illegal activity and actions intended to provoke conflict
    in Caledonia. The OPP will take necessary action to maintain public peace and
    order.

    VoC REPLY: Hi again, Laurie. I’ve got to say that I’m confused. I thought when you were dissecting my attempt to place a flag on a pole that you were opposed to our efforts to have the rule of law restored. Not that you ever condoned violence or tried to justify it. It’s just that usually the people who write in and ask about stuff like that in the way you asked it end up being rabid supporters and/or apologists for the people who believe in using violence, and I just don’t have the time to invest in trying to convince people whose minds are already made up. I’m sorry if I had you wrong. To answer your orignal question then, the police never told me not to put up a flag, they just told me they weren’t going to let me do it. I then sat down in the road in protest. I’m a little pressed for time, so I hope you’ll forgive me if I don’t have time to get into it in any more depth than that. You can read my account of the day’s events here. Regards, Mark

  5. VoC NOTE: A copy of this comment and my reply has been posted under ‘OPP Only‘ page accessible via the top menu since the writer was referring to that article and a comment posted there by an OPP officer.
    =================================================================

    Good morning Mark 🙂

    I am pleased to have found this site. I have a personal interest in the situation in Caledonia and have been following it avidly, and posting hither and yon on various sites and blogs. I find my posts disappear from sites with a native bent however.

    I wanted to comment that I find your site refreshing, and although it’s predictable that I won’t agree with everything posted, as we are all individuals, I do find your site to be less focused on being an anti-OPP site than some others, and more focused on the actual issues and it seems to have a less biased direction. While I agree there is cause for frustration with the OPP I am glad to see some recognition of the root of the problem being represented here.

    I was quite interested in your responses to the anonymous officer here, and found some backhanded type comments, the type where it reads like a laundry list of complaints and perceived offences while you still smile a fake smile and say “but we’re your friends” .

    I struggle to find a word, perhaps snide is the best I can come up with, but that can’t be *quite* right if I interpret your intentions correctly. Perhaps guarded (and understandably so) is closer to the feel I got.

    From the photo section, where there is no place to leave comments I did note that the picture illustrating “abusing the elderly” was maybe not the best representation to gain sympathy as the woman shown looks rather tickled… perhaps the feeling of victory that comes with having the perfect photo op overrode her facial muscles, however it ruins the effect. However I have pretty strong feelings about propaganda from any side, even if it’s in line with my own sympathies.

    I hope you don’t take my comments in a spirit they weren’t intended, I believe our hearts are in the same place with some outlying differences no doubt due to personality and circumstance. That is what makes Canada such a wonderful place, the diversity and the right to hold different opinions and different points of view being fairly represented… and the ability of most to accept and respect that, without having to change anyone else’s or their own.

    I’m cautiously optimistic that this is the kind of site that embraces that.

    Respectfully Christiane
    Proud Canadian
    Family member of OPP officer
    Native

    VoC REPLY: Hi Christiane. Thanks so much for writing. Thanks also for the compliments. While VoC is really an ‘activist’ site dedicated to restoring the rule of law, and not an unbiased media outlet, I work hard to make VoC a place of truth and fairness, as well as a place that documents the history of this struggle. So, let’s address your concerns:

    1. I don’t take offence at all that you voice genuine reservations about parts of my article or site; some of my proudest articles have originated because people – initially, much less kind than you – have vehemently disagreed or misinterpreted something I have written and took the time to tell me what they thought. Some of them are listed in Our Struggle under the heading, “Is the struggle against Two Tier Justice about racism towards native people?”

    2. Regarding the photo of the woman being pushed across the road by the officer: It was taken on Dec 16/07, shortly after Gary McHale and I were arrested, so I didn’t take it. In fact, she was right beside the police car I was being put into. The caption isn’t mine; it’s the photographers. Do I think the OPP were ‘abusing the elderly’ by moving her off the road? No, and neither does Gary McHale. In fact, we had a discussion about including the caption in my Police Act complaint, and decided not to do so. Still, a photographer, a protester himself and admittedly biased, took the photo, and in the context of the day – where 2 people were arrested while trying to put up a Canadian flag, the caption made sense to him, and I respected his decision to use it. Now, though, you’ve got me thinking. I don’t appreciate it when apologists for the DCE thugs put out disgusting propaganda saying things like “KKKanada is committing genocide,” so I will re-caption that photo. Caledonia has a lot to be angry about with the OPP, but ‘abusing the elderly’ isn’t one of them. Thanks for pointing it out. By the way, your observation regarding what appears to be an inappropriate smile on her face is most astute.

    3. I re-read my reply to the individual officer (as opposed to the original appeal itself) and I really can’t see anything unfair or mean-spirited that I would change. I tried to do my best to acknowledge his feelings and offer sincere appreciation for his comments without BS’ing him/her while trying to open a crack in the door just a little wider, a crack that was made possible by him/her writing to me. Can you tell me what part of my reply made you uneasy?

    4. Sorry if you thought my general appeal to OPP officers or to the individual officer to be on the ‘snide’ or ‘mean’ side. It was meant to encourage police officers working in Caledonia to reach into themselves as human beings with a fundamental sense of justice and encourage/provoke/shame (choose your word) some into doing whatever they can to help restore the rule of law to Ontario for the good of all citizens – native and non-native.

    I believe that no healing or reconciliation – whether it is non-native/native or police officer/civilian can occur unless it is based completely on truth, and there has been precious little of it with respect to landclaim lawlessness. The reality is that everything the OPP are doing in Caledonia is based on the lies of Ipperwash. My guess is that a lot of officers don’t know the truth of what happened there, and just how far the Inquiry went to cover it up. We are too darned close to the brink of anarchy to mince words.

    I tried to imagine what I would say to a group of OPP officers if I had the chance to meet with them privately, or this individual officer. Unfortunately, readers don’t have the benefit of hearing the tone of my voice, seeing the expression on my face, or – sometimes – the tears in my eyes, so it’s entirely possible that some might question my choice of words.

    Part of what you’re sensing, I think, is the absolute gut-wrenching dilemma all of us in this struggle feel in that – until Caledonia – we had great respect for all police officers and the price they and their families have to pay to protect the rest of us, versus our life-altering dismay that so many could be willing participants in perpetrating the injustice that is ripping our province apart.

    It’s really confusing when you’re fighting for rule of law, equality, respect for the Supreme Court and the Charter against police officers, their union, and police brass. Who has more of a stake in defending the rule of law than police officers? Yet, who is doing more to destroy it than police officers? The irony of it really eats at me. When Fantino came to town on Jan 20th to personally supervise the OPP and the London riot squad, he met with the criminals and their supporters on the Douglas Creek Estates, but he – as usual – refused to meet with us. None of his senior officers would meet with us, either.

    I understand why I have to fight corrupt, self-serving politicians who would allow Ontario to descend into anarchy rather than admit their Ipperwash Inquiry was a cover-up and that its recommendations are actually victimizing native people as well as the rest of us, but I don’t understand why I have to fight police officers in order to get them to enforce the law and do it equally. I have actually made phone calls and sent letters to the London Police Service to introduce myself to them, to explain my actions and to offer to open my email/phone records up to them just to counter OPP/OPPA lies that we were inciting hate. This is bizarre to me, considering that I/we have presented a consistent message of non-violence and respect for the law, and for all human beings.

    5. The ‘duality’ of my words you are sensing also comes from an absolute commitment to destroy race-based policing in Ontario even if it means taking on police officers themselves as we have to date. I swore an oath to defend this country and its values, and I will do so no matter what price I have to pay. We have been threatened with death, kidnapping and torture by native extremists. We have had our reputations destroyed (almost) by people who should know better. We have been arrested for trying to raise a Canadian flag, and are prepared to risk our freedom again, if necessary. And, finally, we struggle financially with limited resources as we work full time at this without pay as OPP officers refer to Caledonia as ‘Cashedonia’ because of all the overtime they’re getting.

    Despite all these obstacles, we are still here. I think what I’m saying is that Two Tier Justice WILL be destroyed, and it would be nice to have some help from OPP officers to hasten that happy day. So far, with very few exceptions, they have been silent. The OPPA has been silent. Why? Let’s assume that there isn’t a single officer who is prepared to speak out and is prepared to resign. Could they write a letter to the editor? Could family members collect comments from officers and publish them without including identifying information? Are officers calling the OPPA and telling them to speak out against lies like the Ipperwash Inquiry and against race-based policing? If I knew that OPP officers were doing everything they could to resist, I’d feel a lot less conflicted.

    We are just ordinary citizens doing our very best against almost impossible odds. What is at stake here is nothing less than the survival of Ontario, and even Canada as a peaceful democracy ruled by laws. It is time for officers to make their views known, irregardless of the risks. It is the least they can do to help. We have an election in 2 weeks. Now would be a good time to speak out.

    One day this sad period in our history will just be a bad memory. I would love to be able to tell the story of how police officers fulfilled their oaths of office, not by blindly following orders to commit acts of injustice against our Constitution, our Supreme Court and fundamental human rights, but by doing everything they could to help the citizens of Ontario resist those who gave the orders. Hamilton police officer, Dave Hartless, did it, at risk of his career, and he will be remembered for his courage.

    If the majority of officers truly are unhappy with what they are doing, I would love to be able to share their comments or stories. Imagine if we had just 100 officers sharing their disgust with what their leaders are doing. If you have any ideas on how to make this happen, I’m all ears. Send me an email at info@voiceofcanada.ca.

    6. You referred to the root cause of the problem being discussed here. Based on my work on The Ipperwash Papers, I think the root cause is the OPP/DND failure to uphold the law in Ipperwash in the years prior to Dudley George’s death. Eighteen months prior to his death, the Sarnia Observer ran an editorial saying ‘Police must enforce laws.’ Nine months before the near fatal attack on Sam Gualtieri in Caledonia the Toronto Star called for a return to the rule of law in their editorial, “Time for a reality check on Caledonia.” The town of Bosanquet blamed George’s death on the refusal of DND to enforce the law. We’re going to have land claims for a while. They should be settled fairly, but both sides must negotiate in good faith, and the use or threat of violence cannot be tolerated.

    Again, thanks so much for writing. Regards, Mark

  6. Mary-Lou LaPratte

    Dear Mark,
    I admire Christiane in the letter she was able to write in such a down to earth honest way. Your reply was from the heart. Wouldn’t it be a better world if we could all sit down and give our thoughts freely as you and she have done without violence and repercussions.
    I pray we all have a better future together in mutual respect , trust and common goals for peace and prosperity.

    MLL

  7. Mary-Lou LaPratte

    Dear Mark,

    I admire the letter written by Christiane in her direct, down to earth, honest approach. You answered her from the heart. Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we could all speak freely and solve our differences with compromise, respect, trust and common goals for the future with peace and prosperity for everyone. With people like her and you and I can see this coming about in time.

    MLL

    VoC REPLY: Hi ML. You know what I admired about Christiane? Her willingness to try to look for the good in my words instead of trying to read something into them that wasn’t meant to be there. Her willingness to give me the benefit of the doubt. Her astute assessment of the duality of my feelings about individual OPP officers. She definitely picked up on that. In a way she’s right; I am telling OPP officers I am their friend as I also tell them to f**k off. It’s hard to tell someone you want to be their ‘friend’ as you’re also telling them you’re going to file lawsuits, Police Act complaints and Human Rights complaints against them. I would love for someone like Christiane to help me give a voice to the individual officers considering their union isn’t doing it. She seems ‘special’ somehow, doesn’t she? Thanks. Mark

  8. When I read the tite “RCMP lead OPP arrest….” All I can picture is an RCMP officer taking an OPP Constable by the hand and leading them through the motions of arresting the natives like a parent would lead a child through the motions of doing every-day tasks.

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