The Buffalo Soldiers and genocide

To the Editor

It is with the heaviest of heart that I write this communication. As an American Indian and former resident of the great state of Alabama, I am deeply offended to read that a monument has been erected to a group of soldiers whose greatest claim to fame was participating in the planned genocide of the American Indian.

One does not need be a history professor, to be aware of the contributions/atrocities of the so called Buffalo Soldiers; one need only use any search engine available on the world wide web, look long enough and with eyes open and the truth will surface.

The Buffalo Soldiers participation in the wars waged against the American Indian in the west, was simply a continuation of the planned genocide or physical removal at the very least, set into motion by President Lincoln, who made no secret of his disdain of the American Indian.

President Grant took up the reins and along with generals like Sherman and others waged an all out offensive campaign to eradicate all American Indians men , women , children, young and old alike. In a excerpt from "How Lincoln’s Army Liberated the Indians" by Thomas J. Lorenzo it is stated

"Sherman planted a racist tautology: Some Indians are thieving, killing rascals fit for death; all Indians look alike; therefore, to get some we must eliminate all . . . deduced from this racist tautology . . . the less destructive policy would be racial cleansing of the land . . .". More detailed references can be found such as "Sherman was once brought before a congressional committee after federal Indian agents, who were supposed to be supervising the Indians who were on reservations, witnessed "the horror of women and children under military attack." Nothing came of the hearings, however. Sherman ordered his subordinates to kill the Indians without restraint to achieve what he called "the final solution of the Indian problem," and promised that if the newspapers found out about it he would "run interference against any complaints about atrocities back East" (Fellman, p. 271).

Ironically, some ex-slaves took part in the Indian wars. Known as the "Buffalo Soldiers," they assisted in the federal army’s campaign of extermination against another colored race.

I could give reference after reference, and I suppose it would matter little in the scope of what happened all those years ago to my ancestors seen through the eyes of the modern world. However, having ancestors who died at the hands of the Buffalo Soldiers I find it in poor taste to place a monument to soldiers no matter the color of their skin ,who willingly murdered, raped, and plundered the American Indian. It is too similar to Hitler’s "Final Solution" for my stomach.

With reserved regards,

T. Warren
KAW/Osage Mixblood
Bridgeport IL.