Lubicon Lake Indian Nation
Little Buffalo Lake, AB
3536 - 106 Street
Edmonton, AB T6J 1A4
August 22, 1991
Enclosed for your information is a copy of a newspaper article on the situation with Daishowa and the Lubicons.
The quotes by Daishowa officials are noteworthy.
Re-printed from the WINDSPEAKER, August 16, 1991
LOGGING MAY BE THE LAST STRAW FOR LUBICONS
By Amy Santoro
Windspeaker Staff Writer
The Lubicon Nation may not survive as a society if Daishowa Canada goes ahead with a major logging operation this fall, says Lubicon advisor Fred Lennarson.
Lennarson said there's "little doubt Daishowa now intends a major logging operation in unceded Lubicon territory this fall." If the Japanese-based corporation, which owns a megamill in Peace River, can't be stopped, Lennarson predicts the result will be "a fatal blow to the collective psyche of the already badly battered and profoundly damaged Lubicon society."
The Lubicon people are a tired group after a consistent hard-hitting 10-year battle with oil giants, pulp companies and the federal and provincial governments, Lennarson told WINDSPEAKER.
"It's not at all clear the Lubicon people are up to once again leading the charge," he said.
Lennarson said it's up to Canadians now to take up the battle. "Don't wait for the Lubicons to do something, you have a stake in this too."
Lennarson wouldn't specify what he recommends Canadians do, only it must "go beyond letter writing and protests" because the government and companies like Daishowa "hire professional liars" to deal with the complaints.
Lennarson said he has "no problem asking Canadians to participate in civil disobedience -- this government isn't interested in the rule of law. My hesitation is I don't want to presume to suggest something specific to people, at least at this point. I'm not speaking to a hierarchically organized army."
Lennarson is urging people to "take a position of their own, not simply saying 'I support the Lubicon Indians' but saying 'I oppose Canada destroying aboriginal societies for these natural resources'."
Jim Morrison, general manager of Daishowa's Edmonton office, said in an interview Daishowa has no plans for a major logging operation this fall.
However, a subsidiary -- Brewster Construction -- does plan to log in unceded Lubicon land but nowhere near the 243 sq km proposed reserve area. Daishowa vice-president Tom Hamaoka couldn't be reached for comment.
Daishowa communications officer Wayne Crouse told WINDSPEAKER "it's misleading to say Daishowa is undertaking a major logging operation. We're taking sawmill residuals we're obliged to take by law."
But Crouse confirmed Brewster will be logging in unceded Lubicon territory. "Brewster has a quota, they're continuing their normal logging operation."
Morrison said no agreement was made with the Lubicons not to log in the band's 10,000 sq km traditional territory, which lies within Daishowa's Forest Management Agreement with the province. Lennarson claimed Daishowa agreed at a March 07, 1988, meeting to stay out of Lubicon territory until the band settles its land dispute. But Morrison remembered things differently. He said Daishowa agreed not to log in the proposed reserve area "and we're not".
Lennarson said if Morrison "was Geppetto's dummy instead of Daishowa's, his nose would be a mile long and still growing." Morrison laughed at the suggestion.
Lubicon Indians have been fighting for a land settlement for over 50 years.
In 1989 the band rejected a federal settlement package of $45 million on a 246 sq km reserve. The Lubicons want $167 million in economic compensation.
Lubicon Chief Bernard Ominayak was unavailable for comment.