The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) gave no warning to Frenchglen ranchers in the video that they were in danger, these folks lost land, animals and other property on July 10, 2012. Oregon land owners, neighbors and citizens scramble to save their belongings and cattle. Ranchers were told to stand down and if they attempt to stop the fire they would be arrested.
That same year, Harney County Sheriff's Department called John Witzel a liar when he showed this same video about the BLM burning their lands. The evidence was in front of the law and no investigation was conducted over the Miller Homestead fire. Over the past four years since, there has been numerous attempts to get government officials and local law enforcement to confront these ongoing situations.
John Witzel, a rancher himself, has little to lose now and is speaking out since the government took his land usage rights associated to the refuge land; however, many other ranchers remain tight-lipped for fear of the same retaliation from the federal government that seems to have no rules or law of the land to follow even though the U.S. Constitution says differently.
The BLM has no regard for animal or human life in this situation and the hour long video shows how blatently the government is burning lands outside of the small town of Frenchglen, Oregon. Witzenl heard of no rancher given a warning that their life and property could be harmed before or after the fires were started. The BLM did take the time to order them to stand down putting out the fires.
The tax-paying citizens of these lands were threatened with arrest if they attempted to douse the fires. Meanwhile, Oregon citizens scramble to save any of their belongings, as well as, the life of their cattle. Folks can see these cows burned alive while the BLM federal workers start more fires in the background, including one while the film is rolling that burned down the Miller's house.
In a shocking revelations, Witzel recalls seeing a birthing cow burned alive with a partially born calf burned to death as it hangs from birth canal. Burning cattle jumped to their deaths in ravens to escape the hellish torment.
Clearly, the BLM is not putting out the fires, they are starting them and government workers are seen suited up in labeled BLM suits recklessly burning everything. The land and surrounding properties were left unsupervised and on this particular day it burned the Miller Homestead to the ground and tortured the cattle alive killing many of them in their corrals and leaving several alive and suffering with burns. The fire placed the farmers in extreme danger and they along with their families ran through fire to escape the inferno enveloping them.
In Seims video: BLM burns land and cattle. (Fire starts at 3:20) The video was taken in July 10, 2012, and on on Jan. 4, 2016, Oregon citizens began protesting by occupying the Mulheur National Wildlife Refuge wishing their voices to be heard by the people and those in authority who might help them in the government. The only support they are finding are citizens and protestors, their pleas have fallen on the deaf ears of the government.
Why the protest? The Harney County residents are terrorized by U.S. government officials threaten citizens and promising to take their land grazing rights. Federal corruption and "in your face" approach proves the government will stop at nothing to get the land from the peopel.
Harney County citizens and neighbors of the Hammond's marched to the Malheur County court house in Burns, Oregon, about 280 miles from Portland, to protest against the corruption and destruction of life and property.
Dwight and Stephen Hammond accused of arson terrorism were re-sentenced for an accidental fire in which they were wrongfully accused terroristic arson by the government. The Hammond had lit a backfire after a lighting store started a massive fire to protect their property and lives. The fire continued out of control and the BLM found their reason to take the Hammond's lands charging them as "Arsonal Terrorists" as the fire spread on protected BLM property that the Feds do not constitutionally own.
These events have continued over the years with no relief from this government overreach because the local folks are either afraid of the BLM or they or family members work for the BLM and are in fear of losing their paycheck.
The irony of it all is that the BLM burns the same lands without fire safety procedures in place and any residential warnings to protect the life and property of citizens is not given. In blatant retaliation for the Hammond's not giving up their land, they were re-sentenced to serve out their full prison term even though the original sentencing judge felt it was an outlandish sentence even at its minimum.
The BLM government officials are continuing their efforts in the name of conservation and saving wildlife but continue to prescribe burns and kill domestic animals alive. The residents voices are unheard by local law officials and others in the government as well.
Now the Oregon protesters have created a last ditch effort to stand off at the Mulheur Wildlife Refuge building hoping that fellow citizens will take notice of their situation and join them in their efforts to change the outcome.
The Refuge protesters instead have been labeled militia, patriots and anti-government group of rebels. These are not crazed, mad men telling their story in the video, they are not government instigators, they are trying to save their livelihoods which happens to be one of our greatest national food sources.
How can citizens prepare against corruption within the government?
- Write politicians to let them know what is going on and that you will not support their campaign if they do not stand for the citizens.
- Write local news Letters to the Editor and let neighbors and citizens know what is happening in the area.
- Meet with the press and show them what is happening they might not get the true version out but they certainly will get the wheels rolling and proof that something is going on.
- Join together and protest peacefully.
How to help Dwight and Steven Hammond?
- Tell the Department of Justice: Don't brand hardworking ranchers as terrorists. End this cruel and unusual punishment. It's unjust, unfair and un-American.
- Write your congressmen and Oregon governor and ask for them to be released due to this unlawful re-sentencing.
- Sign the Oregon Farm Bureau's petition to Save the Hammond's.
Ken Taylor's interview with John Witzel on BLM Video burning land and homes in French Glen, Oregon. John Witzel is the rancher that taped the burning by the BLM in Harney County in 2012. Used with permission.
May God bless America again.