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Exposé on Canadian Mining Companies Around the World

March 25: Path of Destruction Launch in Toronto

by Anna Luisa Daigneault

Exposé on Canadian Mining Companies Around the World

Canadian extractive activities are harming many people in Canada and around the world. The environmental impacts and social injustices caused by Canadian mining are growing. For those of you in Toronto on March 25 2009, I encourage you to attend an event exposing the devastation caused by Canadian mining companies around the world.

You can listen to the documentaries at:

Here are the details.

OPIRG-Toronto presents
The CD Launch of

Written by Asad Ismi
Produced by Kristin Schwartz

A three-part audio documentary about the global devastation spread by Canadian mining corporations. Featuring the voices of the communities affected by Canadian mining in Guatemala, Papua New Guinea, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Canada. (See full description below).

The series has been played on 12 radio stations in 12 cities from coast to coast in Canada and in the U.S. (see airplay list, reviews and funders below). The documentary has garnered enthusiastic praise from Canadian and international commentators. The series was funded by six progressive Canadian unions and five non-governmental organizations amongst others.

*Wednesday, March 25, 7 pm
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE)
Room 2214
252 Bloor Street West (St. George subway)*


1. Arthur Petahtegoose, Former Chief of the Atikameksheng Anishnawbek or the Whitefish Lake First Nation located near Sudbury, site of the biggest mines in Canada.
His interview is prominently featured in the documentary. Under his leadership, the Nation recently launched a $550 billion lawsuit against the Canadian federal government and the Ontario government, on the basis that the area of the Sudbury mines belongs to the Nation, as does the revenue generated by their operations for the last century. The Nation is also suing the two governments for health and environmental damage.

2. Edgar Godoy, Expert on Canadian mining companies in Guatemala and President of CUPE Local 2191.
He is part indigenous Maya from Guatemala and is also featured in the documentary.

3. Ramon Grajo
He is from the Philippines and will speak about the impact of Canadian mining companies on that country. Grajo is the spokesperson for Bayan Canada, a chapter of Bayan (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan) or New Patriotic Alliance, a prominent progressive organization in the Philippines.
4 & 5. Kristin Schwartz and Asad Ismi.


Zainab Amadahy, Indigenous Writer and activist. She is a founding member of the Coalition in Support of Indigenous Sovereignty.

Path of Destruction: Airplay and Reviews

The documentary has been an instant hit. The series was posted on the internet on November 18, 2008. Twelve community radio stations from coast to coast in Canada and in the U.S. have aired or committed to air the documentary so far. Seven of these stations played or agreed to play the series within one week of its release. The series has been aired, published and praised by indigenous activists, editors and producers in Canada and internationally (see reviews below). Stations that have aired the documentary include Secwepemc Radio 91.1 FM on the Neskonlith native reserve in British Columbia. The series is featured on Isuma TV, an indigenous video/multi-media portal started by Isuma, the Inuit film house. Isuma has been working for 20 years out of Igloolik, Nunavut, and has a northern Inuit TV network. The series is also being translated into Hindi for print publication in "Adhikar", India's indigenous newspaper. India has the largest indigenous population in the world at 65 million.

Stations in Canada and the U.S. that have aired (h/a) or committed to air "Path of Destruction" so far:

Secwepemc Radio 91.1 FM--Neskonlith Reserve, BC (h/a)
KRFP 92.5 fm--Radio Free Moscow, Moscow, Idaho, U.S.
CKDU 97.5 fm--Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS (h/a)
CKUT 90.3 fm--McGill University, Montreal, QC (h/a)
CHRY 105.5 fm--York University, Toronto, ON (h/a)
CFRU 93.3 fm--University of Guelph, Guelph, ON (h/a)
CFRC 101.9 fm--Queen's University, Kingston, ON (c/a)
CILU 102.7 fm--Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, ON (h/a)
CJAM 91.5 fm--University of Windsor, Windsor, ON (h/a)
CHCR 102.9 fm--Killaloe, ON;104.5 FM in the Ottawa Valley, ON (c/a)
CKUW 95.9 fm--University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, MB (c/a)
CJSF 90.1 fm--Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, BC (c/a)


1. "This audio documentary successfully manages to bridge many little-heard perspectives on the Canadian mining industry. First, we hear from indigenous peoples in Canada and beyond as to how mining companies threaten their very existence as peoples; in other words, how the industry is complicit in an ongoing global genocide. We hear from working people around the world on how the industry has devastated their health, livelihoods and environment. Finally, we look at how Canadian mining is intricately connected to, complicit in and profiting off of wars being waged around the world. Ismi and Schwartz provide us with a horrific but solid introduction on how Canadian and international laws, trade agreements and the power of wealth protect mining corporations from answering to any justice system for their crimes. At the same time, the program provides us with hope as it questions the very need for mining and takes an introductory look at alternatives to this devastating resource extraction industry. 'Path of Destruccction' is an outstanding educational tool addressing the issues of colonialism, resource extraction economies, corporate power, free trade agreements, the military industrial complex and many other issues."
---Zainab Amadahy, indigenous writer, community worker and activist based in Toronto. She is a founding member of the Coalition in Support of Indigenous Sovereignty, member of the Board of the Association of
Native Development in the Performing and Visual Arts, and the Executive Director of Community Arts Ontario.

2. "Ismi and Schwartz's radio documentary, "Path of Destruction: Canadian Mining Companies Around the World" is a thorough and remarkable exposé of Canadian imperialism and its global economic web of ecocide and misery. Eloquent testimonies from indigenous community members from all continents are woven together to give us an intimate view of the mining industry's devastating impacts. Everyone must hear it."
---Sarita Ahooja, Isuma TV, an indigenous video/multi-media portal started by Isuma, the Inuit film house. Isuma has been working for 20 years out of Igloolik, Nunavut, and has a northern Inuit TV network.

3. "Canadian imperialism's best-kept secret is undoubtedly the inconvenient truth about Canadian mining capital's genocidal path of destruction. Ismi and Schwartz's audio documentary illustrates how at home and abroad Canadian mining companies are poisoning the environment, propping up brutal dictatorships, and violently repressing any dissent to their exploits. 'Path of Destruction' is a bold exposé of Canadian imperialism, thoroughly dispelling any illusions that Canadians may have about the Canadian state as a positive force in the world."
---Steve da Silva, Co-producer of 'Radio BASICS' on CHRY 105.5 FM--York University, Toronto; Editor, BASICS Community Newsletter.

4. "'Path of Destruction' is the best radio documentary I’ve come across in a long time. It combines an
oft-neglected analysis of colonialism in Canada with a radical critique of the mining industry and the other institutions and processes that support it. A very important series which has a powerful impact."
----Matt Soltys, Producer of 'Healing the Earth Radio' on CFRU Radio 93.3 FM--University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, .

5. "Ismi and Schwartz have the fearlessness and integrity to report the truth and hold Canadian mining companies accountable. Canadians need to know what's happening in Africa, for example in the Democratic Republic of Congo where the slaughter of 4 to 5 million people has occurred for the sake of Canadian (and foreign) profits. We can no longer claim ignorance after listening to this documentary. Essential for all Canadians."
---David Parker, Spoken Word Coordinator, CKDU 88.1 FM--Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS

6. "I have just heard your excellent radio programme 'Path of Destruction'. Great job and thank you for it. I think it is a daring programme to take on the Industry with facts of history and it is damaging to them and their high moral claims."
---Xavier Dias, Spokesperson for Jharkhand Mines Area Coordination Committee[JMACC], [An indigenous organization resisting mining and displacement in Jharkand State, India]; Editor of the Hindi monthly 'Khan Kanij aur ADHIKAR'[Mines,Minerals & Rights],"India's only mining-affected community newspaper".

7. "Thank you for 'Path of Destruction'. The concept of a radio project for a wider information and education campaign is brilliant. This is very helpful information to us in the Cordillera, Philippines, where Canadian mining companies are beefing up their applications (Olympus,Terra Nova, Ivanhoe,Golden Valley)."
---Abigail T. Bengwayan, Public Information Commission, Cordillera Peoples Alliance, The Philippines.

8. "The new audio documentary, ‘Path of Destruction’ is an important contribution to the growing chorus of resistance to Canadian mining. Through careful analysis of Canadian corporate and government polices, the documentary's producers expose how mining has devastated communities around the globe and who has benefited from that devastation. Mining policies are carefully situated within the broader context of Canadian colonialism. Most compellingly, the documentary features the voices of those directly affected by those policies. Their urgent stories are a call to action for change that will restore and protect the health of their communities and the rights of its peoples. This documentary can and should be used as a tool to create that change."
---Alison Brown, Producer of 'Redeye' on Vancouver Cooperative Radio, CFRO 102.7 FM,

Path of Destruction: Canadian Mining Companies Around the World

A three-part radio documentary series

Written by Asad Ismi
Produced by Kristin Schwartz

Canada is the world's leading mining nation. Sixty percent of all public mining companies are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. About half of all mining capital is raised in Canada. Many Canadian mining companies have become notorious for damaging communities and the environment and fueling wars and repression all over the world. The Canadian government has refused to hold these corporations accountable leading to international criticism of Canada.

Just as European settlers created Canada by stealing and plundering native land, its mining companies today continue these practices at home and abroad. This colonialism and neocolonialism is what Canada is all about.

Episodes (30 minutes each):

1. “Damaging Communities and the Environment” focuses on the drastic effect Canadian mining companies have had on indigenous peoples in Canada and Papua New Guinea. With Chief Arthur Petahtegoose, Kathleen Naponse, Jethro Tulli and Mark Ekepa.

2. “Fueling Wars and Repression” describes how Canadian mining companies have been stoking conflict in the Congo, Guatemala, Canada and on an international scale. With Prince Kumwumba, Fausto Valiente, Edgar Godoy, Jim Harding, Chief Paula Sherman and Bob Lovelace.

3. “Who Benefits?” details the enormous benefits that Canadian mining companies get from their operations and from government support. With Joan Kuyek, Jamie Kneen, Karyn Keenan, William Sacher and Edgar Godoy.

"Path of Destruction" was funded by:

Canadian Union of Postal Workers (National)
CUPW Local 576 North Bay
Canadian Union of Public Employees--Local 3903
CUPE National
CUPE Local 1281
Public Service Alliance of Canada
Ontario Public Service Employees Union
Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation
Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association
Ken Luckhardt
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
Canadian Federation of Students
Ontario Public Interest Research Group-Toronto
Continuing Education Students Association of Ryerson
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annaluisa_daigneault (Anna Luisa Daigneault)
Member since March 2009


I am a graduate student studying ethnolinguistics in the Anthropology Department of Université de Montréal. My current work is on the Yanesha endangered language of the southcentral Peruvian Amazon. My thesis focuses on the factors leading to the disappearance of the Yanesha language and women's sacred songs. I have recently been accepted to work as a field linguist on an expedition to Paraguay with the National Geographic's Enduring Voices Project. I am also a singer and musician and play in a experimental project called "Banana and the Flying Colors" as well as a freak-folk band called "Feast of Spirits" in Montreal, Canada.

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