Monday, May 6, 2013

5 de Mayo: Communiqué to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix

Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted 
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix
400 East Monroe

Phoenix, AZ  85004 

5 de Mayo, 2013 

Good Greetings,

On March 23, 2012 our organization organized an Indigenous Peoples Forum on the Doctrine of Discovery at the Arizona State Capitol House of Representatives.  The purpose of this forum was to bring forward the perspectives and historical processes which frame the inter-relationships between the Nations and Pueblos of Indigenous Peoples of the territory and the hemisphere, in terms of our coexistence with the States that are direct beneficiaries of the Doctrine of Discovery in the Americas. 

Our intention of moving deliberately out of the age of colonialism and towards decolonization, called upon us to define and determine for ourselves as "Peoples, equal to all other Peoples" the criteria of fundamental processes required to guide this vision of our political, economic, cultural, and spiritual liberation from the schema of domination which has been normalized by Christendom and justified by the Doctrine of Discovery for over five hundred and twenty years in this continent of Abya Yala [the Americas].
The report of the Forum in Arizona was presented in May of 2012 to the 11th Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York.  Two recommendations from this session of the UNPFII are especially pertinent to this communiqué:

4.            The Permanent Forum recalls the fourth preambular paragraph of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which affirms that all doctrines, policies and practices based on or advocating superiority of peoples or individuals on the basis of national origin or racial, religious, ethnic or cultural differences are racist, scientifically false, legally invalid, morally condemnable and socially unjust. Legal and political justification for the dispossession of indigenous peoples from their lands, their disenfranchisement and the abrogation of their rights such as the doctrine of discovery, the doctrine of domination, “conquest”, “discovery”, terra nullius or the Regalian doctrine were adopted by colonizers throughout the world. While these nefarious doctrines were promoted as the authority for the acquisition of the lands and territories of indigenous peoples, there were broader assumptions implicit in the doctrines, which became the basis for the assertion of authority and control over the lives of indigenous peoples and their lands, territories and resources. Indigenous peoples were constructed as “savages”, “barbarians”, “backward” and “inferior and uncivilized” by the colonizers who used such constructs to subjugate, dominate and exploit indigenous peoples and their lands, territories and resources. The Permanent Forum calls upon States to repudiate such doctrines as the basis for denying indigenous peoples’ human rights.

9.            The Permanent Forum recommends that States include in all education curricula, in particular the school system, a discussion of the doctrine of discovery/dispossession and its contemporary manifestations, including land laws and policies of removal.

In consequence and in implementation of the above recommendation from the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, we convened at Arizona State University West on April 19-20, 2013, an International Conference organized under the theme of DISMANTLING the Doctrine of Discovery. Co-conveners of this International conference were TONATIERRA, Maya Vision, Centro Cultural Techantit, Instituto de Ciencia y Cultura Indigena (ICCI) of Ecuador, and Universidad Amawtay Wasi also of Ecuador.   The event was hosted by the Social Justice and Human Rights Program at ASU West.

In the course of reviewing the local history of the issues of conflict and criminal violations of our Human Rights as Indigenous Peoples, which lie at the core of continuing pogroms of persecution disguised as “legal” policies under the mantle of the Doctrine of Discovery, we now present to you the following archive of documents:

  • 2010 UN Preliminary Study on the Impact of the Doctrine of Discovery.
  • 2007 UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
  • Papal Bull Inter Caetera of 1493
  • El Requierimiento of 1513
  • ANASAZI: Spring 1984 Letter to Pope John Paul II
  • May 30, 1984 Response: Vatican Secretary of State
  • February 7, 2012 Memorandum to the US Justice Department
  • March 14, 2013 Article: “Usurped” - Cardinal Bergoglio and the 30th Anniversary of the War over the Malvinas/Falklands Island between Great Britain and Argentina.

Our purpose in presenting this archive of information to you at this time is to establish a proactive and inclusive approach to addressing the issues of Human Rights violations, in particular the Right of Self Determination of Indigenous Peoples, in order to move forward into the repudiation of the Doctrine of Discovery as it continues to serve as a cloaking device of pathology and colonization which deforms and distorts the spirit and well-being of our common humanity.   Please consider this communiqué as a request to meet and discuss the implications and clarifications required as we prepare to participate in May of 2013 once again at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York, and expect to provide a report of the developments here in Arizona relevant the ongoing process of implementing the cited resolutions of the UNPFII, in the Spirit of Truth.

Tupac Enrique Acosta, Yaotachcauh 
Tlahtokan Nahuacalli 

Tezcatlipoca            Quetzalcoatl             Huitzilopochtli




Embassy of Indigenous Peoples

802 N. 7th Street Phoenix AZ 85006

Catholic Herald: "Usurped" Malvinas-Falkland Islands

Catholic Herald
Pope Francis is unlikely to make any statements on the Falkland Islands in future

By Edward Pentin on Friday, 15 March 2013

David Cameron has responded somewhat cheekily to Pope Francis today, after it was revealed that the former Archbishop of Buenos Aires is on record for having said the Falkland Islands belong to Argentina.

Asked at a press conference in Brussels about the then Cardinal Bergoglio’s remarks, the Prime Minister said he should “respect” the islanders’ referendum vote. He added, tongue in cheek: “The white smoke over the Falklands was pretty clear.”

Mr Cameron said: “I don’t agree with him – respectfully, obviously.

“There was a pretty extraordinarily clear referendum in the Falkland Islands and I think that is a message to everyone in the world that the people of these islands have chosen very clearly the future they want and that choice should be respected by everyone.”

Last year, at a Mass at Buenos Aires for the 30th anniversary of the 1982 Falklands War, the future Pope told worshippers: “We come to pray for all who have fallen, sons of the homeland who went out to defend their mother, the homeland, and to reclaim what is theirs, that is of the homeland, and it was usurped.”

Argentine president Cristina Kirchner is reported to have already tried to recruit Pope Francis in her efforts to take control of the Falkland Islands and renew international pressure for talks.

But the Pope is highly unlikely to intervene in the dispute. Like Benedict XVI, he will try to stay away from engaging directly in the politics of his homeland, including its foreign affairs.

As Cardinal Ratzinger, Benedict had made some of his views on foreign policy explicit, such as opposing Turkey’s entry into the European Union. But he never reiterated them as Pope, and even appeared to change his mind on the issue.

Pope Francis may choose to exert some influence through diplomatic channels, but any public support will probably not be forthcoming, especially given the recent referendum showing the overwhelming desire of the islanders to remain a British overseas territory.


Breaking the Deadlock in the Anglo/Argentine Sovereignty Dispute
By Roberto C. Laver (2001)

Chapter Three: Legal Claims to Sovereignty  
(Pages 66-67) 


Argentina bases its claim to the Falkland Islands (Malvinas) on historical events of a political and diplomatic nature which occurred before the British took possession of the islands in 1833.  Argentina’s claim to title is primarily based on its succession to Spain’s rights and its effective occupation of the islands.  Britain had no legal right, according to the Argentine position, to occupy the islands in 1833 and expel the Argentine settlement at Port Soledad.  This illegal occupation was immediately protested by the local authorities and thereafter Argentina has never accepted British jurisdiction over the islands. 

1.  Argentina’s claim to title by succession
a)             Spain’s title to the islands 

According to Argentine position, Spain held title to the Falkland/Malvinas at the time of Argentine independence (1816).  Spain’s title is based on (1) the papal bulls of 1493 and the Treaty of Tordesillas (2) the geographic and geological dependency of the islands, (3) treaties signed between Britain and Spain in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, (4) Spain’s occupation and effective possession of the islands, and (5) acquisitive prescription. 

(1)  Papal Bulls and the Tordesillas Treaty.  The first ground for title is the papal bull Inter Caetera of May 4, 1493.  It is argued that Spain’s rights go back to the aforementioned bull, by which Pope Alexander VI awarded to Spain and exclusive right of occupancy and control over all areas, including the seas, to the west of an imaginary line drawn 100 leagues west of the Azores and Cape Verde Islands and running pole to pole.  The region granted to Spain included all the mainland and then islands of the “Ocean Sea,” discovered or to be discovered in the future, beyond the line of division established in the bull.  The remaining area was awarded to Portugal.  The Inter Caetera grant was extended by another bull, dated September 26, 1493 and later modified by the Tordesillas Treaty of June 7, 1494.  The Treaty of Tordesillas  was later ratified by Pope Julius through the bull Ea Quae of 1506.
     The Argentine position holds that the papacy had authority to grant titles over lands and that this authority had been accepted by Christian monarchs since the Middle Ages.  According to accepted doctrine of the time, the world was the property of God, and that the reigning pope, as God’s representative on Earth, enjoyed the right to award lands unoccupied by Europeans to monarchs for purposes of converting the inhabitants to the Catholic faith.


usurp |yo͞oˈsərp|
verb [ with obj. ]
take (a position of power or importance) illegally or by force: Richard usurped the throne. 
• take the place of (someone in a position of power) illegally: supplant: the Hanoverian dynasty had usurped the Stuarts. 
• [ no obj. ] (usurp on/upon) archaic encroach or infringe upon (someone's rights): the Church had usurped upon the domain of the state. 
usurpation |ˌyo͞osərˈpāSHən|noun,
usurper noun
ORIGIN Middle English (in the sense ‘appropriate (a right) wrongfully’): from Old French usurper, from Latin usurpare ‘seize for use.

1984 Letter: Vatican Secretary of State

A.N.A.S.AZ.I. 1984 Letter to Pope John Paul II

American Nations Alliance Sovereign Aztlan Indigena

709 N. 10th Street.  Phoenix, AZ USA 85006
Spring 1984

His Eminence
John Paul II

Rome, Italy

Your Excellency,

We as members of the Traditional Native Nations of the Western Hemisphere feel that the time has come for your office to re-evaluate the principles and effects generated by the Vatican decision of Pope Alexander VI to grant domain over our lands and peoples.  In effect, this decision proclaimed that our way of life, thinking, and existence as nations was meaningless in the eyes of Christian civilization.  We to be “discovered”, used and discarded.

We now ask that you examine in your own conscience the fallacy of this decision.  We humbly ask, how can someone give away what does not belong to them?  A re-examination of this historical event and public comment by your office on this matter is clearly in order.  A revocation of this doctrine would be a milestone for the peaceful attainment of our universal human rights.

We do not ask this in anger or vengeance, but in the Spirit of Truth, trusting in our common faith to the Universal Creator.

For Traditional Xicano Nation,

Tupac Enrique Acosta