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APTN: Brian Mulroney held the line on settler colonialism: activist

March 1, 2024 — 

Brian Mulroney is being remembered by some in the Indigenous community as a polarizing figure during his time in office, with his decisions and actions continuing to shape the country to this day.

Mulroney served as the 18th Prime Minister of Canada from 1984 to 1993. He died Thursday at the age of 84.

One of the defining moments of Mulroney’s tenure was his handling of what is commonly called the Oka Crisis in 1990.

The standoff between the people of Kanehsatà:ke people who live west of Montreal, and the Quebec provincial government over the expansion of a golf course onto disputed Mohawk land led to a violent 78-day standoff.

“The events of 1990 were a watershed moment in Indigenous-settler relations in Canada,” said Sean Carleton, assistant professor of history and Indigenous studies at the University of Manitoba.

“This is not speaking ill of the dead. It is insisting that he be remembered for all that he did, rather than the usual uncritical fawning and selective celebration that happens when colonial politicians die.”

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