200+ armed feds declare war on Nevada rancher over desert tortoise

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Armed men outside the Bundy ranch (photo by Cliven and Carol Bundy)

Elizabeth Harrington reports for The Washington Free Beacon, April 8, 2014:

A two-decades-old battle between a Nevada rancher and the [federal] Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has resulted in officials armed with machine guns surrounding the ranch and forcibly removing the owner’s cattle, according to the rancher’s family.

Cliven Bundy, the last rancher in Clark County, Nev., has been fighting a “one-man range war” since 1993, when he decided to take a stand against the agency, refusing to pay fees for the right to graze on a ranch run by his family for centuries.

After years of court battles, the BLM secured a federal court order to have Bundy’s “trespass cattle” forcibly removed with heavy artillery, the family said.

“The battle’s been going on for 20 years,” Bundy told the Washington Free Beacon. “What’s happened the last two weeks, the United States government, the bureaus are getting this army together and they’re going to get their job done and they’re going to prove two things. They’re going to prove they can do it, and they’re gonna prove that they have unlimited power, and that they control the policing power over this public land. That’s what they’re trying to prove.”

Bundy said the government has brought everything but tanks and rocket launchers. “They’re carrying the same things a soldier would,” he said. “Automatic weapons, sniper rifles, top communication, top surveillance equipment, lots of vehicles. It’s heavy soldier type equipment.”

His wife, Carol Bundy, said that roughly 200 armed agents from the BLM and FBI are stationed around their land, located about 75 miles outside of Las Vegas. Helicopters circle the premises, and the airspace and nearby roads remain blocked.

“We’re surrounded,” Carol Bundy said. “We’re estimating that there are over 200 armed BLM, FBI. We’ve got surveillance cameras at our house, they’re probably listening to me talk to you right now.”

A National Park Service spokesman denied there were armed guards rounding up the cattle in a conference call on Tuesday. However, she confirmed that there was “security” in place, citing threats to the contractors who are removing the cattle.

“Contractors are here and they are in place to round-up the cattle and to bring them to the impound area,” Christie Vanover said. “As for security, there [is] security in place, but that is merely to protect the contractors.”

“As you know, we have received threats and the contractors have received threats,” Vanover said. “Our personnel here and throughout the park service and throughout the BLM have received threats, as well. So security is in place to merely protect the contractors so that we can complete this operation.”

As of Monday, officials have seized 234 of Bundy’s 908 cattle. Impounding the cattle alone could cost the government as much as $3 million.

“They just brought a load down today,” she said. “They kind of harass us as well. When we leave they follow us.”

This afternoon eight helicopters surrounded the family after they began taking pictures, according to Bundy’s daughter, Bailey. Their son, Dave Bundy, was arrested for taking pictures on state road 170, which has been closed, and is being held by BLM.

Government helicopters circle the Bundy ranch / Cliven and Carol Bundy

The BLM said they took Dave Bundy into custody following his “failure to comply with multiple requests by BLM law enforcement to leave the temporary closure area on public lands.”

Carol Bundy said five officials took Dave and “threw him on the ground.”

“One put his knee on his head, the other put his boot on his head and pushed him into the gravel,” she said. “He’s got quite a bruised head. Just bruised him up pretty good.”

Environmentalists are praising the government’s forceful actions, which are being taken to protect the “desert tortoise.”

“We’re heartened and thankful that the agencies are finally living up to their stewardship duty,” said Rob Mrowka, a Nevada-based senior scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity. “The Gold Butte area has been officially designated as critical habitat for threatened tortoises—meaning the area is essential to their long-term survival as a species.”

“[Cliven] Bundy has long falsely believed that Gold Butte is his ranch,” added Terri Robertson, president of Friends of Sloan Canyon.

Rob MrowkaThe BLM designated 186,909 acres of the Gold Butte off-limits for the “critical desert tortoise” population in 1998. Bundy had already lost his grazing permit five years earlier for refusing to pay fees for the land, which his family has ranched since the 1870s.

The “federal grazing fee” is $1.35 per “Animal Unit Month,” or the amount of forage needed per animal, each month. Bundy said he owes roughly $300,000 in back fees, while the BLM asserts he owes over $1 million. The BLM defended the removal [of Bundy’s cattle] because Bundy did not “voluntarily” give up his cattle.

“We’ve tried to do this through the legal and we’ve tried to do it through the political, and what we’re at right now, I guess we’re going to have to try to stand,” Cliven Bundy said. “We the people have to stand on the ground and get our state sovereignty back, and also take some liberty and freedoms back to where we have at least access to this land.”

“The story is a lot about the cattle, but the bigger story is about our loss of freedom,” Carol Bundy added. “They have come and taken over this whole corner of the county. They’ve taken over policing power, they’ve taken over our freedom, and they’re stealing cattle. And our sheriff says he just doesn’t have authority, our governor says he doesn’t have authority, and we’re saying, why are we a state?”

“I’m a producer,” Cliven Bundy said. “I produce edible commodity from the desert forage, and all of these things are governed under state law. So, in other words, this type of government has eliminated all of our state law, eliminated our state sovereignty, and has took control over our public lands and even took control over our Clark County sheriff. They’ve taken the whole county over. The whole state, almost.”

“This is just about power of the government,” Carol Bundy said.

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval (R.) voiced his concern about so-called “First Amendment Areas,” designated locations set up by the BLM where citizens can protest the removal.

“Most disturbing to me is the BLM’s establishment of a ‘First Amendment Area’ that tramples upon Nevadans’ fundamental rights under the U.S. Constitution,” he said in a statement Tuesday.

“To that end, I have advised the BLM that such conduct is offensive to me and countless others and that the ‘First Amendment Area’ should be dismantled immediately,” he said.  “No cow justifies the atmosphere of intimidation which currently exists nor the limitation of constitutional rights that are sacred to all Nevadans.  The BLM needs to reconsider its approach to this matter and act accordingly.”

Sandoval also said his office has received numerous complaints about the BLM’s conduct, including road closures and “other disturbances.”

H/t FOTM’s Wild Bill Alaska & swampygirl


The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that:

  • Militia are rallying to help the Bundys: Two militia members from Montana and one from Utah have arrived at the ranch, with “hundreds” more expected. Ryan Payne of the West Mountain Rangers says militias from New Hampshire, Texas and Florida “tell me they are in the process of mobilizing as we speak. We need to be the barrier between the oppressed and the tyrants. Expect to see a band of soldiers.”
  • Yesterday, April 9, Bundy’s son, Ammon Bundy, was shot with a stun gun by law enforcement officers; and Bundy’s sister, Margaret Houston, was pushed to the ground.
  • Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada said he told new U.S. Bureau of Land Management chief Neil Kornze in Washington, D.C., that law-abiding Nevadans shouldn’t be penalized by an “overreaching” agency.

Infowars reports that Ammon Bundy said around 20 cowboys came to their aid and retrieved the cattle that the feds had forcibly taken from the ranch.


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0 responses to “200+ armed feds declare war on Nevada rancher over desert tortoise

  1. Shades of Waco and Ruby Ridge. This could possibly be part of Agenda 21, using the environmental/preservation angle. Drive em’ all off the land and herd ’em into the urban areas where they are easier to control. Then the elite can have all the land to themselves.

    • I’m convinced that both Waco and Ruby Ridge were tests on Americans to see what we would do. Both were obvious violations of rights. Never before Waco(?) had tanks been used to break down walls and start fires. There was an outcry by some, but not many of us. There were a lot of case documents destroyed in the OKC bombing (coincidentally). Now the government knows that if the media is quiet, people won’t know. And even when some facts come out, people do nothing.

  2. Everyone please send this far and wide. These so-called agents have overstepped and they know it. The Sheriff of Clark County is not a “Constitutional Sheriff”.. Please e-mail,call the governor,call sheriffs dept express your opinions. Blog….. and by all means if you can get there to support the Bundy Ranch please do. Farmers and Ranchers are the backbone of this Country.

    • tina, you’re so right we need to help. I am doing a post right now with some contact numbers and email addresses. Let’s help out peeps. 😎

  3. Sheriff Richard Mack on his way. Here we have a real Sheriff whom has a peaceful resolution. The Clark County Sheriff could stop this right now but he will not do it.

  4. & this:
    BLM to kill hundreds of desert tortoises as its conservation center runs out of money
    kingsnake / Sun, August 25 2013 at 17:45

  5. PETA, vegans, and cattle and tortoise lovers rejoice! The UN charter, “sacred document” as described by GHWB, is building authority for the NWO and its prophet. American citizens are becoming willing to dispossess legal owners of land and property and kill the fellow citizens who pay for their salaries, uniforms, badges, and guns. The Constitutional rights of the very people who are their brothers and sisters, rights the “enforcers” took an oath to uphold, are forgotten. And to implement the policy of dispossession, troops arrived for the defense of the desert tortoise against harmless cattle. The tortoise is an animal already doomed by a Federal agency, but NWO principle trumps all.
    It is similar to the time of Hurricane Katrina when the Admiral of the US Coast Guard told citizens that they could not walk on their own Gulf Shore beaches-he took his orders from BP, and those orders denied Americans walking on state/local/private property. Some day, those enforcing such policies will be wearing blue helmets while those giving the orders will continue to wear matching blue ties.
    What happened to Amendment X? Was it replaced by “The powers not delegated to the United Nations by the Sacred Charter are reserved to the United Nations worshipfully and not any people.” .

  6. Good grief, this is scary! This and what the EPA is doing – man, our government is out of control…

  7. 1. Can’t desert tortoises take care of themselves? 2. Don’t cattle leave them alone (and they can share land)?

    • EXACTLY my FIRST QUESTION when this story broke! So, what are the ulterior motives….b/c we know it’s NOT REALLY the tortoise! The US Gov’t. owns more land than God (want “proof?” Take an Amtrak trip across country one day & see all the empty land & all the Nationally owned lands…not just BLM…you can go to sleep in Gov’t-owned land and wake up hours later STILL inside Gov’t-owned land…..). Cattle have been “free-ranging” in the west for centuries…additionally, easements and leases have been issued for centuries….(this man has an easement)…AND furthermore—what authorizes the feds to kill these cattle? (They are NOT just confiscating them…they are KILLING them) AND…ON TOP OF THAT…..these “protected tortoises” in this area are ALSO being “euthanized ” by the feds b/c they have become over-populated!!!! Harry REID had these boundaries moved to benefit his development buddy. FOLLOW THE MONEY!

  8. Gingercake, the desert tortoise and cattle get along well, but, sadly, those in power are creating division between once former friends.

  9. Farmers are cooperating ? or is this isolated?

  10. Militia are rallying to help the Bundys: Two militia members from Montana and one from Utah have arrived at the ranch, with “hundreds” more expected.
    Scroll up to end of my post for Update!

  11. This is a spark in tinder box. At some point people will fight back.

  12. I hope this does not end like my friend Andrew Wordes aka The Chicken Man who lived in Roswell, Georgia. He was harrassed by the city for his legal chickens. They made his life miserable anyway they could and broke him. He blew himself up March 26, 2012. I had begged him to come live with me but he was going to fight. Please pray for this rancher and pray for Andrew. He was loved by so many. Look his story up. so sad. The Mayor was even on his side. Andrew would take chickens and eggs to the schools and educate the kids.

  13. Pingback: “Loading ferals as we speak” | Straight from the Horse's Heart

  14. Reblogged this on "OUR WORLD".

  15. We all know this has nothing to do with grazing rights. There is another NV rancher fighting for his ranch also. If you didn’t watch Jon Scott, Enemy of the State, on Fox over the weekend, please do so.
    There is a family in WYO. fighting the government over putting a legal pond on their property. They have been told to empty it or face 75,000 a day fine.
    Both of the ranchers have been harassed under a democratic regime.
    This is about total control of our water and food sources. People on the East coast have been told they can’t save rain water or water running off their roof or face a fine.
    This is about losing our rights to living.
    I have such great disappointment on the people following the orders to enforce illegal procedures. I don’t care if it is their paycheck, what happened to doing the right thing? Stand up you bums and say no.
    These people are being used as examples to scare the populace into submission in the future.
    They are now separating the calves from their mothers, certain death.

  16. “BLM and the U.S. Govt. have long falsely believed that they own Land which has been stolen from the native inhabitants by war and deceit.” Is what the horribly misinformed mr. Robertson should say. Aside from that, this isn’t about the tortoise, have the “security” filed an environmental impact statement? How do we know those hired mercs aren’t shooting the tortoises for fun while they’re there? What are the mercs doing to the tortoise’s enviroment, worse than what cattle would be doing (tramping around, tearing up plant life, polluting the air with an excess of vehicles, causing stressful amounts of noise)? None of them care about the tortoise, they’re there solely for the theft of the man’s property, and they’ll “wacoify” or “ruby ridge” him to do it, too. This is what agenda 21 really looks like. I hope this man and his family are being prayed for, and that churches are trying to give him some aid (be it monetary or with food stuffs etc.).

    We should remember, however, that this also serves as the term “agitprop” or agitative propaganda, the govstapo *want* to force a confrontation that gets violent because it could be used as “justification” for other things they’re just itching to have an excuse to pass, which they can’t otherwise pass now because legal-minded people see no pretext. They are also utilizing this as a “show of force” to anyone else who might “cross the line”, as such it acts as a demoralizing agent. Something that might help the Bundys would be to also have a section of the ranch they use for tortoise farming (or to publically state they’d be using a portion of their property and their proceedes to ensure the tortoise’s continued survival), that way any attempt to take the residence, or cause damage, will turn every environmentalist that is currently for them, against them, for the further endangerment of the tortoise (not like they aren’t further endangering it already, as previously stated, however.) I am unsure of other ways to mitigate the situation, an equal and opposing “show of force” would be exploited to their disadvantage as it would be claimed the opposing force is “a bunch of terrorists”, and that would then be used to justify live fire or “protective measures for the contractors”.

  17. Just another nail in America’s coffin.

    Shouldn’t take too many more to seal the deal, as the sheeple appear to have no problem with this blatant act of government tyranny.


  18. Has anyone wondered how, with all the cubacks, we suddenly have so many available Feds. To harass ranchers? With the population so small in NV., it is hard to believe there are so many there. Is this part of the private army we were warned about? After all, we weren’t told what uniform/uniforms they would be wearing.

  19. The more I looked into this the more I find the Bundy to be liars. I find very little truth in anything the say. What it is Bundy resents the vet low below market fees he should pay like everybody else and refused. The land is suppose to be grazed by 100 cattle Bundy has nearly 1000. He is empowered by groups who want to seize our public land for locals and wealthy enterprises. This should be called. THE FIGHT FOR FREELAND


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