4000 Artifacts Stored at Oregon Refuge Held by Armed Group
...Thousands of archaeological artifacts--and maps detailing where more can be found--are kept inside the national wildlife refuge buildings currently being held by an armed group of protesters angry over federal land policy.
Ryan Bundy, one of the leaders of the group occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in southeastern Oregon, says they have no real interest in antiquities...
...More than 300 recorded prehistoric sites are scattered across the refuge, including burial grounds, ancient villages and petroglyphs. Some of the artifacts--including spears, stone tools, woven baskets and beads--date back 9,800 years...
...Scientists are also worried about unintentional damage that could be done to the prehistoric sites by cattle, vehicles and heavy equipment,
The group at the ranch has driven road graders and other large construction equipment around the refuge headquarters buildings, but Bundy said...they haven't used the machinery to move any earth. He wouldn't rule out that possibility, however.
In 2014, Ryan Bundy and supporters of the Bundy family rode ATVs on federal land closed to motorized vehicles in Utah as part of a protest. Their route took them along an illegal trail that crossed through Native American archeological sites.
what eye thynk: The fact that these illegal protesters claim to have "no real interest in antiquities" can also be interpreted as their having no real respect for them either.
If you doubt that, consider the attitude demonstrated in the 2014 Utah protest where riding a ATVs through ancient burial sites was their way of voicing their dissatisfaction. "No government flunky is gonna tell us what to do! We ride where we choose to ride! T'weren't nothin' but a Injun cemetery anyways!
Also consider that Ryan Bundy said he would not rule out the possibility of using federal equipment to move some earth around inside the Malheur refuge if the mood struck them.
And how would they justify this destruction? In the words of Mr. Bundy: "We also recognize that the Native Americans had the claim to the land, but they lost that claim. There are things to learn from cultures of the past, but the current culture is the most important."
The federal government has no right to stop them from destroying sacred Native American artifacts because the white man has proved himself to be superior and thus more important? In what century are these people living?
A recent Daily Kos article referred to the occupiers as the "Cowliphate." I'd say that's a perfect way of describing how the militia members think the World-According-to-Bundy should work. In the Middle East,
Just in case any lingering doubt remained about the militia's purpose, Ryan Bundy added that the armed occupiers would welcome those interested in archeology, but that in today's America cattle ranchers and loggers should have priority over federal land use.
That's as close as we'll probably ever get to hearing these people admit that their protest is nothing more than a self-enriching land grab.