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Shut Down the Tar Sands Highway!

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On July 6, 2013, hundreds of people gathered at the 4th Annual Tar Sands Healing Walk in Fort McMurray Alberta. During the Walk it was announced that a major oil spill occurred on the Athabasca River flowing into the Lake Athabasca in the Indigenous Community of Fort Chipewyan.

Later that evening at the Celebration Feast for the Healing Walk, Gitz Crazyboy of the Athabascan Chipewyan First Nation announced a call for action to stop traffic on Alberta highway 63 on August 24th, 2013.

Highway 63 is the main artery which carries workers to the Tar Sands production sites North of Fort McMurray.

The Youth of the Dene Nation are calling out for support to help them demonstrate to Industry and the Governments that the Tar Sands must be stopped for the sake of the future generations. On August 24th, 2013, join them by coming to the action in Fort McMurray or plan an action in solidarity with their plans.

For more information visit
or call Lionel Lepine
at 780-838-8384

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Shut Down the Tar Sands Highway: Change of Date

Dear Stimulator and Activist Community, 

After speaking with Lionel Lepine at the Healing Walk campground gathering at Indian Beach only moments after Gitz Crazyboy made his announcement public to the Healing Walk attendees, I soon found that due to the presence of undercover police at the campground, the date of August 24, 2013 to shut down Highway 63 will have to be changed. Lionel expressed that there will be no Facebook page (or any other corporate social media vulnerable to surveillance) to corroborate with others wishing to attend or support the event, as they wish to avoid security challenges. In which case, they may be using to organize. 

In solidarity, 


Media Co-op

Question about tactics

I'm confused Matt, if they're calling for a public demo to block the highway, why does it matter if there were undercovers? Any public demo is going to have a police presence and relies on numbers to prevent easy arrests. Otherwise you'd be doing clandestine stuff to "avoid security challenges" but it's one or the other ...

support rallies shouldn't be cancelled for the 24th.

This post, and the lack of updates on the facebook event page, and the contact website given not having august 24th mentioned,  are giving the distinct impression of the support rallies on the 24th being cancelled, which I think is a bad idea.

The support rallies should still be set for August 24 since some people were already working on it, and public events are impossible to organize in secret. Can you continue helping promote those even if the tarsands blockade itself starts on a different day? That's 10 days from now, if we push hard for those until then they can still serve a purpose.

good point

good point matt

our communities have infiltraitors, snitches and just plain ol police forces.

(they are not the same thing)

i will also take a moment to state the need for meaningful involvement due to our colonization and oppressions that are everywhere. solidarity is not just a cliche word but is about action on deconstructing all the oppressive nonsesnse.

I'm simply reiterating community dialogue

Dear Sid Ishon and Tami Starlight, 

Thanks for your follow-up comments after mine. To be honest, I am quite new to the complex internal solidarity work within First Nations communities in Canada, especially regarding resistance to industrial development projects. From my perspective, I have simply been privileged to stand with people who embody a strength that bespeaks the clarity of truth and the uncorrupted focus of personal authenticity. My focus remains.  

In my heart, I feel privileged to have shared space with one such as Lionel Lepine who openly offered to give his life to the nonviolent struggle of his community, as they continue to face the most direct impacts of the Tar Sands. I was deeply humbled to have felt in his presence a trust, although expressly skeptical, when he shared with me his protective and defensive leadership strategy.


PS - Tami Starlight, thanks for your support. I was sorry not to have attended the Anti Oppression Networks' workshop in Calgary during your recent tour. I will stay in touch with the Network for future opportunities. Regards.  

We all need to call out for

We all need to call out for support to help them demonstrate to Industry and the Governments that the Tar Sands must be stopped for the sake of the future generations.

Yes man be safe, take care of

Yes man be safe, take care of each other. But I do belief that cops are not enemy they try to stabilize any abnormal situation.

Police and Power


I appreciate your comment on the police, and I do agree with you in general, however, to be an officer of the law gives one power. As we have seen in countless examples around the globe and throughout history, power corrupts. Canada is not immune to human rights atrocities committed by the "civic" institutions that faciliate our everyday lives, and to which we owe a measure of due respect. That being said, we do live in a Petro-State, in which all levels of institutional infrastructure benefit from the $1 billion dollar subsidization of the oil industry. In which case, there is a great bias in the power balances of law and order. When in a precarious situation, and the balance begins to tip, we can expect that we know which way it will fall. 

If I may share my opinion, I think Gitz Crazyboy offered his invitation to the crowd based on feeling a source of trust with all who had been present for the Healing Walk. There was an air of confidence and solidarity that is hard to describe in that moment when everyone shared an after-walk dinner at the campground. I think he took a risk, and he and Lionel Lepine knew they were taking a risk in making such an announcement, however he did it out of a demonstration of mutual solidarity with all of the people present. I think he did it to step forward and show a true transparency and self-respect that clandestine government surveillance would never display. As if to pose the question: who really has pride in themselves and their people? I think he also did it out of desperation, as if to demonstrate how he represents a much more vulnerable front in the struggle for resources, and with the same vigor as one standing in the middle of a highway he offered himself to all present, unmasked and honestly. I think he spoke from his heart.  



"stabilize abnormal situations" huh ...

That is some dangerous naivete right there ... 

Rallies should still be happening August 24 anyway.

Okay, so support rallies should still be on for August 24 because that's when it was announced for and people already started organizing so you shouldn't be giving the appearance of calling it off. It's hard to invite the general public to something that has to be organized in secret. 

Thanks for your comment.

Daniel Johnson, 

Many thanks for your enthusiasm in sharing the Tar Sands Blockade action. I appreciate the meaningful dialogue on the event, and simply shared my concern based on my experience on Highway 63. 

I don't intend to give any appearance of calling the action off at all. Instead, I wish to foment a stronger allyship with regard to the underhanded manipulations by authority figures that would jepoardize the chance for the action to continue. 

Please let us know how we can assist you in inviting the general public. 

In solidarity,


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