A top environmental activist likened a Minnesota pipeline project to Auschwitz in a Friday interview with a local news station.
Honor the Earth Executive Director Winona LaDuke criticized Enbridge Energy’s Line 3 pipeline, which was approved by both the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, according to Alpha News. The project will need approval from two more agencies before construction can commence, the conservative outlet reported.
“So, you know, there’s some people that are up there trying to get some money because it’s a really difficult time in the north. But you know what? It’s kind of like getting a job in the gas chamber,” LaDuke said in response to a TPT Almanac, a PBS news affiliate, host that suggested Native American populations may benefit from a job surge during construction, according to Alpha News.
“That’s a great job to have, but it’s really not the job you want to have for the long term and that’s what this pipeline is like. It’s like the ecological equivalent to Auschwitz. That’s what this pipeline is. So I don’t want to work in the gas chamber and I don’t want an Auschwitz,” she continued.
Minneapolis American Jewish Committee director Jacob Millner called on LaDuke to apologize for the antisemitic comment in a Tuesday tweet.
“With antisemitism on the rise and Holocaust literacy declining, it is important we do not create a false equivalency,” he tweeted. “We call on [Winona Laduke] to apologize for this grossly unfair and unfortunate comparison.”
With antisemitism on the rise and Holocaust literacy declining, it is important we do not create a false equivalency. We call on @WinonaLaduke to apologize for this grossly unfair and unfortunate comparison.https://t.co/ll8U2obXvL
— Jacob Millner (@JacobMillner) November 17, 2020
LaDuke also claimed that the pipeline “will be met with resistance,” and she slammed Democratic Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz on the segment.
“You can be sure that this pipeline project will be met with resistance,” she said, according to Alpha News. “In a time of climate disaster, nobody thinks this is a good idea, except for apparently Gov. Walz and Enbridge.”
“You know, I really think that the governor of Michigan has a much better idea. Don’t let risky Canadian corporations, you know, put a gun to your head and say, ‘we need a new pipeline.’”
LaDuke’s organization, Honor the Earth, is funded by popular clothing retailer Patagonia and 2017’s top donor to the non-profit was the Novo Foundation, which is operated by Peter Buffett, the son of billionaire Warren Buffet. A 2019 Daily Caller investigation found that the environmental group was sued by a former employee, Margaret Campbell, who alleged a colleague used “spiritual status” to sexually assault “native boys.”
LaDuke has made similar comments referencing the Holocaust in the past. (RELATED: Israeli Consul Pressures CNN Executive For Apology Over Holocaust, Trump Comparisons)
“That’s the way it goes in Fort McMurray,” she wrote in a publication called The Circle in 2019. “I often think of Fort McMurray as Bedzin, the small town next to the Auschwitz Concentration Camp. The tars sands are the Ecological Auschwitz. Always a good time in Fort McMurray, just like it was in Bedzin. Just let those trains go on by.
Honor the Earth responded to a Daily Caller News Foundation request for comment, but did not yet have a statement from LaDuke.
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