Pipeline protest site a city unto itself with school, meals
NEAR THE STANDING ROCK SIOUX RESERVATION, N.D. (AP) — Tribal flags, horses, tents, hand-built shelters and teepees dominate one of the biggest, newest communities in North Dakota, built in a valley on federal land near the confluence of the Missouri and Cannonball rivers.
It's a semi-permanent, sprawling gathering with a new school for dozens of children and an increasingly organized system to deliver water and meals to the hundreds, sometimes thousands, of people from tribes across North America who've joined the Standing Rock Sioux in their legal fight against the Dakota Access oil pipeline to protect sacred sites and a river that's a source of water for millions of people.
"This is better than where most people came from," said 34-year-old Vandee Kahlsa, referencing the oft-harsh conditions of reservations across the United States. The Santa Fe, New Mexico, resident, who is Osage and Cherokee, has been at the camp for more than a month.