"The allegations of police and government wrong-doings are so serious that there is no question there should be a public inquiry into whether or not the rule of law was respected."
- Canadian Forum: April '97
Two years ago the governments of British Columbia and Canada were mounting the largest paramilitary operation in Canadian history against a small group of Indigenous and non-native resisters occupying sacred, unceded Sundance grounds at Ts'peten (Gustafsen Lake). A massive cover-up has thus far kept the truth from public view. After a corrupt and bizarre kangaroo court process during which they were denied their counsel of choice, an acknowledged expert in international and constitutional law, Defenders are being held as political prisoners. World-wide, supporters have called for their release and a full public inquiry with international supervision. In the interest of furthering this inquiry call - we look back.
"Involvement of DND (Department of National Defence) and its equipment is to be decided in Ottawa at a PCO (Privy Council Office) meeting with the military...With approval, the military can move very quickly."
- RCMP Assistant Commissioner Brown, disclosed notes
"Call from Senator Len Marchand - refers to group. No better or even similar to Branch Davidians (Waco) Supports show of force."
- RCMP Superintendent Len Olfert, Commanding Officer, disclosed notes
"As far as we're concerned, they are nothing more than a renegade bunch ofthugs doing criminal acts with weapons, they are trespassing and making a mockery of the very foundations of Canadian society"
- RCMP media liaison Officer Peter Montague, cited in Tsilhqot'in National Government (TNG) Summary of RCMP & Press Reports
"[AFN 'Grand Chief'] Mercredi said Thursday... It's very clear that the RCMP have a plan that means taking over the site with force"
- TNG Summary
"August 25th, 1995 1424 hrs; Supt. Olfert called on a conference call with the CO and myself. He was advised by the CO that the military have agreed they will drive the vehicles we were requesting. This came from Major General Addy. The Attorney General [of BC Ujjal Dosanjh] will write to the Solicitor General [then Herb Gray, federal minister] and request use of military equipment then to the National Defence Minister [then David Collenette, federal minister]"
- RCMP Assistant Commissioner Brown, disclosed notes
"August 25, 1995 1815 hrs; We have been advised that the Premier of the Province [BC's then NDP Premier Mike Harcourt] is arriving at 2000 hrs. AG and the Premier to have a conference. The Attorney-General will call the CO at 2200 hrs tonight with his decision on whether they accept the use of military equipment. Once the letter has been signed we would send it to the Solicitor General and to our Headquarters D/Commr. Operations. Once we have received the word from the Premier the CO is to call Insp. Guy and he will ensure that the letter is delivered signed and sent out as planned. Directed Insp. Guy to call NOC and tell the duty officer to advise D/Commr. Beaulac when the request has arrived."
- RCMP A/Commr. Brown, disclosed notes
"I am writing to request your assistance in obtaining the support of the Department of National Defence to provide the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in British Columbia with the following equipment and services as technical support to a criminal investigation into the activities of individuals at Gustafsen Lake..."
- letter from BC AG Dosanjh to Solicitor General of Canada Herb Gray, disclosures
"0829; meet CROPS [Commr. Regional Operations?] office for conference call with Prov. Gov't - AG office. [RCMP A/Commr] Brown, [RCMP Inspector] Guy, Self [RCMP A/Commr. Murray Johnston]. AG [Ujjal Dosanjh], Evan Lloyd, Ann Kriston, Dennis Robertson, Angus Roberts - Prov. Aboriginal Affairs, Stephen Owens, DAG Justice, Maureen Maloney, Ernie Quants... P [Province?]
- Will Mercredi be going in with media? Our response - don't know. P - are children present? Our response don't know... CO's position - Do nothing or go ahead - 'Go'".
- RCMP Assistant Commissioner Johnston, disclosed notes
"The political terrorism waged against Indigenous Peoples and the manipulation of crisis by the Canadian authorities continue to remain as root causes of the conflict which erupted at Ts'Peten."
- CONIC letter to Mike Harcourt
"The coverage reminded me of CNN's handling of the Gulf War, with the reporters locked up in steady contact with the generals and the military's spin doctors...the rush to sweep the Gustafsen Lake and Ipperwash affairs out of the news...shows all the signs of a classic cover-up.
- Canadian Dimension Magazine Dec. 95
"It raised eyebrows, prompted demands for a public inquiry and blackened the image of Canada's national police force..."
- Gustafsen Lake Verdict, The Province, May 21, 1997
"There will be inquiries about this until hell freezes over."
- RCMP Supt. Len Olfert, Commanding Officer, Gustafsen Lake Operation, RCMP "training tape" A5 17:02:00, 1995
"... There may be an inquiry..."
- Judge Bruce Josephson, Gustafsen trial judge, transcript 1996
To sign the petition demanding an inquiry by email, send a message to SISIS@envirolink.org with "petition" in the subject header and "I support the petition for a full public inquiry into the events surrounding the Gustafsen Lake crisis," your name, and your city of residence in the body of the message.