OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA — The Intertribal Friendship House in Oakland, California, recently hosted the celebration of the 42nd Anniversary of Wounded Knee. The event drew many veterans from 1973 and others from Northern California, and was organized by AIM-WEST Director, Tony Gonzales. Eloy Martinez, a veteran of the Alcatraz Occupation from 1969-1971 spoke about his experiences. Ms. Jessie Riddle, (Pitt River, Apache) spoke eloquently about her experiences at Wounded Knee in 1973.
Mr. Len Foster (Diné) who is the spiritual advisor to Leonard Peltier, spoke at length about his involvement with Wounded Knee and other very relevant topics.
“I was a member of the Minaminee Warrior Society at the time, located in Wisconsin. I spent 71 days at the Little Big Horn bunker with these other warriors. We survived eleven fire fights, while protecting the Eastern boundaries of the community. The big issue at the time was protecting treaty rights of the Oglala Sioux Nation, and seeking compliance of those treaty rights by the U.S. government”, said Foster. “Today we are here to commemorate the sacrifices, and honor those who fought for our indigenous rights. We’ve lost many relatives in the struggle, and pay homage to those who still struggle today,” continued Foster.