US veterans are returning to Standing Rock to support and protect Native American protesters as the Dakota Access Pipeline continues to meet resistance despite President Trump’s executive order to continue construction of the $3.7 billion pipeline.
The veterans are gathering in Cannon Ball, North Dakota, with many on their way.
“We are prepared to put our bodies between Native elders and a privatized military force,” Air Force veteran Elizabeth Williams told the Guardian. “We’ve stood in the face of fire before. We feel a responsibility to use the skills we have.”
The Veterans Stand group is fundraising for the protesters who continue to resist the pipeline being built by Energy Transfer Partners, and has raised close over $220,000 so far.
“We’re not coming as fighters, but as protectors,” Jake Pogue, a Marine Corps vet, told the Guardian. “Our role in that situation would be to simply form a barrier between water protectors and the police force and try to take some of that abuse for them.”