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A bunker or an archeological dig?

Douglas Creek natives use a backhoe to dig large fortified pits, but deny anything untoward

Paul Legall
Hamilton Spectator
CALEDONIA (Jun 20, 2006)

[SISIS note: The following mainstream news article is provided for reference only, as an example of how mainstream media treats indigenous resistance to genocide. Mainstream media often presents biased and distorted information, lacking pertinent facts and/or context. Inclusion of this article on our site should not be considered an endorsement by SISIS.]

Native protesters deny claims they are building a bunker on the occupied Douglas Creek Estates.

Instead, they say they're conducting an archeological survey for thousands of bodies said to be buried on the site.

"We're doing an archeological assessment of the whole area," Buddy Martin told The Spectator yesterday.

"It's an ongoing thing. It's going to take a long time," said Martin, who identified himself as assistant co-ordinator of the project.

Martin declined to provide details about the excavation, which started last week. But he insisted nothing untoward is happening.

"It's not a bunker," he said during an interview at the Argyle Street entrance to the 40-hectare site.

"There's a lot of misinformation getting out. We wouldn't do that sort of thing."

Neighbours of Douglas Creek Estates expressed concerns last week when workers began excavating a large area in the north end.

Kevin Clark, who lives in the neighbourhood, said he saw several large holes being dug and shored up with wood and metal.

About the same time, residents complained of hearing gunshots at night.

Native protesters have denied being armed or firing shots.

Yesterday, some neighbours expressed doubts about the dig because a backhoe is being used -- a heavy-duty piece of machinery considered unnecessary for an archeological survey.

There are now several large mounds of earth in the middle of the field in an area marked by yellow tape.

Anne Marie Flanagan, spokesperson for aboriginal affairs minister David Ramsay, said an archeological survey had been agreed during talks between provincial negotiator David Peterson and Six Nations representatives last month.

Developers Don and John Henning had their own survey done before getting approval for their subdivision.

Some fragments and shards of native artifacts were found, but there was no evidence of a burial ground.

The Henning brothers are selling the site to the province for an undisclosed amount and have said they're opposed to a second survey until the transaction is completed. Their lawyer, Michael Bruder, said last week it might take another two weeks to finalize the deal.

Native protesters started pushing for a second survey about two months ago after a dowser scanned the site and claimed there are more than 3,000 bodies buried there.

Dowsers say they can find water, metals and hidden objects underground with the aid of sensitive devining [sic] rods.

Six Nations activists have been occupying the site, which has 10 houses in various stages of construction, since Feb. 28.

In Cayuga yesterday, Audra Ann Taillefer, 45, of Victoria, B.C., made a brief appearance in bail court to face charges of intimidation and robbery in connection with a protest-related incident on June 9.

Police issued a warrant for her arrest after two CH television cameramen were attacked in the Canadian Tire parking lot in Caledonia.

The same day, a vehicle owned by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) was hijacked near the protest site.

Two American agents had been driving around the site with an Ontario Provincial Police officer when they were attacked by a group of people and forced out of the vehicle.

The OPP officer suffered serious injuries.

Police issued arrest warrants for six people on a variety of charges, including attempted murder for what they describe as an attempt to run over the OPP officer.

Taillefer was arrested on the Six Nations reserve last Friday.

Assistant Crown attorney Shane Hickingbottom said he'll be asking for a substantial cash bond when she appears for her bail hearing tomorrow.

Taillefer's hearing was postponed because she didn't have surety and her lawyer failed to show up.

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