After 35 days of protests and 11 days of occupation, the indigenous peoples and traditional groups occupying the Belo Monte construction site have left, with their heads held high.

Last night an agreement was signed between the protesters and Norte Energia, in the presence of governmental agencies. And, although the promises were only promises, people felt confident. Most of them were heard for the very first time; and that fact alone was already a sign of victory.

Still, I can´t stop wondering why these people had to live in sub-human conditions – deprived even of clean water for more than 30 days – to be heard? One more sign to add to the long list of how twisted things are around the construction of the Belo Monte dam.

Fighting back an overwhelming sensation of failure and sadness as I watched the end of the occupation, I realized I don't have the right to deny the protesters' overall sense of achievement. It was indeed a victory for those resisting together for such a long time.

We cannot forget that everything started with 13 fisherman camping on an island and evolved to almost 200 people between river-dependent community members, small farmers, boat pilots, indigenous leaders, and fisherman. Those 13 brave warriors managed to build a beautiful and organized community. A team of three women cooked day and night for everybody. The stories shared under the stunning sun and crazy storms; the laughs; tears; even the quarrels between people were a sign that we were becoming a big family. No dam could take that from us.

We are reminded that the protesters were all there to denounce the violation of their rights and the government's pre-conditions that where never met by the company. That fact itself can never be seen as a good sign because people should never have to negotiate to secure their rights. With that in mind, we know that the battle is not over, and the dream to stop the Belo Monte dam continues.

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Responses to "No Dam Can Take That From Us"

  1. Unknown says:

    Please let us leave some spaces as sacred <3

  2. Anonymous says:

    This is a culture of abuse the world over it is a culture of death & destruction and has been that way ever since the advent of patriarchy we need to return to a matriafocal society in recognition that with mothers at the centre life can be respected and held sacred.

    Unfortuneately the opression and enculturaton of women into patriarchy is almost complete, and so it is going to be a hell of a journey for us to awaken to how things need to be. I hope for the sake of all future generations of this planet that this understanding comes upon us soon.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for sharing this issue with the world. Thank You all who endured the long resistance for the love of the earth!

    Many people around the world are doing thier best to protect the mother of us all. It's not the resources that need managed, it's the mega corporate humans who think it's ok to "own and control" resources who need to be managed.

    I live in Portland, Oregon and just gotta say I agree whole heartedly with the previous comment. One Womb Order!

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