Hundreds of people were freely coming into the refuge to get education on their rights. Many group presentations were given each day. On Saturday, the 24th, ten ranchers from Oregon, Nevada, Utah, and Arizona nullified their grazing contracts with the BLM and U.S. Forest Service. On Saturday, the 24th, grand jury administrators from Nebraska and Florida were forming a grand jury to review the abuses in the Hammond case. Tuesday, the 27th, the day LaVoy was killed, we began releasing documents exposing criminal acts by the government. The evening of the 27th, a meeting was scheduled with Grant County residents to give a presentation with those at the refuge. To give their presentation to hundreds of people in the county, including the county Sheriff.
The FBI attacked those who were to give the presentation on the way to this peaceful meeting, leaving hundreds at the meeting with no speakers. On Wednesday, the 28th, a follow up meeting was scheduled with Harney County residents with those at the refuge to finalize actions to claim back lands that were taken by the BLM, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and United States Forest Service. This included plans to take action to begin logging again in Harney County and to restore the thriving economy once known to the Harney County residents. On Thursday evening, the 29th, a meeting was scheduled with Malheur County residents with those at the refuge to give a presentation on the constitution as it pertained to federal limits to land ownership inside the states. This meeting was to occur in Ontario, Oregon. Hundreds were expected to attend. The sheriff's Department also accepted the invitation and was scheduled to attend.
On Friday afternoon, the 30th, residents surrounding Jordan Valley, Oregon, had scheduled a seminar with those at the refuge to come out and inform them of how they can protect themselves from a national monument that is to be signed in by President Obama this year, 2016. This monument is twice the size of Yellowstone, takes up a third of the county's land mass, and will put over 250 ranchers out of business as they know it. Ranchers from Malheur county were scheduled to nullify their contracts with the U.S. Forest Service.
In the following weeks, meetings were scheduled in Wyoming, Montana, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, and the State of Washington. Multiple Skype meetings were also set up throughout the Western U.S. All these meetings were to discuss how they would stand against the unconstitutional land control by the federal government. Those at the refuge collected over 50 testimonies of ranchers who lost their family property to the U.S. Government in Harney and surrounding counties. Hundreds of government documents were compiled by those at the refuge. Many of the documents exposed abusive actions by federal government officials, Judge Grasty, Harney County Sheriff's Department and direct abuses to the Hammond family.
Escalation of force from the FBI, OSP, and the Sheriff's Department incrementally increased as the education from the refuge expanded. Government officials knew that if they did not take forceful preemptive action to stop the expanding influence of the refuge, many would begin to stand for land rights as protected by the United States Constitution. Make no mistake about it: those that were educating at the refuge and are now suffering in jail at this time are political prisoners.
Those at the refuge never pointed a gun and never pulled a trigger to kill. They chose to educate, giving others the freedom to choose. The government promoted fear and forceful tactics to control and stop this education. And ultimately, they used force by the barrel of the gun.
Please watch the video below.
Ammon Bundy, 2/4/16
Link: To contribute to Ammon's defense: https://www.fundedjustice.com/en/projects/28054-Ammon-Bundy---Legal-Defense-Fund
Ammon Bundy Statement Feb 4 2016: