After talking about what’s happening to Africa’s wealth I read in the Washington Post (5/3/2007) about a booming diamond industry in northern Canada, once the scene of a gold rush. The article claims it could be the answer to “blood diamonds” resulting from conflict zones. However on reading the article you might see that there are more than superficial similarities. You see land there is owned by Inuit – the earlier settlers on land which they saw taken out of their hands before. Now there is a surge in interest in education. The report goes on to say there are not too many Indians on the boards of the mining companies which form an industry larger than South Africa’s
Canada’s MiningWatch comments on the diamond industry and makes the point “there are no clean diamonds”.
“There are no clean diamonds. Exploring for them, digging them out of the ground and selling them requires sacrifices from the natural environment, from the wildlife and fish that live on it, and from the Aboriginal people who depend on it.
We want to ensure that the public understand that Canada’s Aboriginal communities are engaged in a daily power struggle to ensure that the mines benefit their people, and to ensure that these mines do not irreversibly damage the intricate web of life on which we all depend.
We want to ensure that the DiCaprio film and its response strengthen the ability of Canadian Aboriginal communities and indigenous communities elsewhere in the world to protect their interests.”