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Statement on the US Military Poisoning Hawai‘i’s Drinking Water

January 5, 2022 | Press Release
Las Vegas DSA Steering Committee

Las Vegas DSA condemns the United States Navy’s poisoning of the O‘ahu drinking water aquifer amidst the ongoing military occupation of the Hawai‘i Islands.

Capitalist and colonial interests have made Hawai‘i unlivable for many native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders. While we are proud to call nearly 53,000 Pacific Islanders our neighbors and comrades here in Las Vegas — colloquially referred to as the “Ninth Island” — the destruction of their native land cannot continue to go unnoticed.

Those who remain in Hawai‘i already deal with an obscenely high cost of living on the islands, caused by the greed of the white, capitalist class. After the U.S. Navy leaked massive amounts of jet fuel into O‘ahu’s largest drinking water supply and attempted to cover it up, residents are still dealing with chemical smells in their water and rashes from bathing in it. The leak at the Hālawa shaft will be shut down until fuel is removed from the tanks and may not reopen for years to come. For residents of Honolulu, this means that a water supply which used to provide 20% of the drinking water for the region is now inaccessible.

In response, the Navy continues to confuse and gaslight community members about the viability of their drinking water during this illegal occupation of the islands. This fits an ongoing, white supremacist pattern of violence by the United States: a genocide, displacement, and erasure of the Indigenous Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population that once thrived without U.S. aided underdevelopment.

Las Vegas DSA stands in solidarity with the Hawaiian and Pacific Islander community, both in Southern Nevada and on the islands. We echo demands for the shutdown of the Red Hill Fuel Storage Facility, which caused the leaks. LVDSA also calls for the United States to cease military operations in Hawai‘i, the Pacific Islands, and all its colonies.

In addition, we’re calling for members to sign on to this petition, demanding the immediate halt to the construction of the TMT, 30 Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea, Island of Hawaiʻi. The TMT will cause harm to the mountain and destroy a sacred place for Kanaka Maoli’s spiritual and cultural practices.

Las Vegas DSA Steering Committee