Thursday, December 24, 2009

Former FBI Agent Joe Trimbach to Red Nation: Don’t Glorify an Unrepentant Killer

Leonard Peltier: Still Defiant, Still Guilty

Video Clip: Click to Watch

In a December 23, 2009 press release, the former FBI Special Agent in Charge, Joesph H. Trimbach asks the Indian organization Red Nation not to glorify the unrepentant murderer Leonard Peltier:

In a letter to an organization that advocates on behalf of Native Americans, former FBI Agent Joseph H. Trimbach admonished the group for awarding their first annual humanitarian award to convicted killer Leonard Peltier. The group, Red Nation, gave the award to Peltier, a member of the American Indian Movement (AIM), at a film festival in November. Peltier serves two life sentences for the 1975 murders of FBI Agents Jack Coler and Ron Williams. Trimbach and his son, John, authored a book about the Peltier trial and what they call the "transformation from killer to saint."

The letter, addressed to Red Nation founder Joanelle Romero, calls on the group to rescind the award and give it to a Native American worthy of such an honor. John Trimbach claims that Peltier's efforts to compare his incarceration to the historic oppression of Native people is nothing but a propaganda ruse designed to mask his guilt.

Trimbach said that it was a disgrace to give such an award to someone who is the antithesis of what the award is supposed to symbolize. "This accolade is supposedly for Peltier's 'lifelong commitment to indigenous and human rights' and his leadership in alleviating 'abuse among Native people.' Red Nation is obviously misinformed about the facts of this double murder. From the day he was convicted, Peltier has done nothing but lie about his involvement in Native issues, beginning with his role in the American Indian Movement. He has has spent his entire criminal career lying to people about his so-called activism behind bars."

Trimbach added that the decision to honor an unrepentant killer is especially nonsensical given the wealth of information that renders Peltier's claims to mere falsehoods and fables. "There's a good reason why every court that has looked at this murder case has found against Peltier. They see right through his lies."

Peltier has recently set up a non-profit corporation that Trimbach says only diverts needed funds away from Indian Country. "This is so objectionable to both Natives and non-Natives who are aware that Peltier uses his made-up victim story to fool people into contributing to his defense fund. This money, from all over the world, could have and should have been used to alleviate genuine Indian hardship and suffering." Trimbach also charges that Peltier has gotten away with piggybacking on pressing Native issues in a self-centered and greedy scam, making it doubly harmful to true Indian causes. "Peltier has maliciously trivialized the seriousness of genuine issues facing Indian Country, all in the name of his own glorification. He bilks his fellow Native Americans out of their hard-earned money, and then returns the favor by doling out some of this money to his friends and supporters. He has no shame."

Trimbach adds that the notoriety given Peltier is due mostly to author Peter Matthiessen's controversial bestseller, In The Spirit of Crazy Horse. "This book is written in the blood of Peltier's victims; it does little more than make a mockery of the Crazy Horse legacy and true Indian heroism. The Red Nation group should come to grips with the damage wrought by this book, particularly when it has been repeatedly exposed as a pack of lies. By the same token, Red Nation should be held accountable for their endorsement of a cold-blooded murderer."

The Trimbachs call on all Peltier supporters to donate to the Red Cloud school and other institutions on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. "It's time to provide assistance that the Peltier fund has diverted away from people truly in need," says Joe Trimbach. "We want to replace the funds that Peltier's cause has essentially stolen from reservation Indians."

In his letter to Red Nation, Trimbach reminded the group that Peltier once interrogated fellow AIM member Anna Mae Aquash by putting a loaded gun in her mouth and calling it "truth serum." Aquash was subsequently murdered after Peltier's leaders decided that she was guilty of being an FBI informant. Trimbach says that Aquash was never an informant. "If Anna Mae had been working for us, she would still be alive today because we would have pulled her out of that dangerous situation. It is a shame that Peltier and the old AIM leadership continue to get away with lying about their role in her demise."

The Trimbachs' book implicates AIM leaders Russell Means and Dennis Banks in the conspiracy that led to the beating, rape, and execution of Aquash in 1975. The alleged triggerman, former AIM member John Graham, is scheduled for trial in February 2010. "Justice for Anna Mae is long overdue," notes John Trimbach. "I hope the organizers at Red Nation sleep soundly at night, while the spirit of Anna Mae cries out for justice. Her death remains a sobering reminder of the true AIM legacy and the evil behind Peltier's propaganda machine. It is not too late for Red Nation to wash their hands of the Peltier myth of innocence. Their time is surely better spent educating people about poverty and neglect on the reservations. Red Nation owes it to their members to be informed about the Peltier murders. There's really no excuse for honoring an unrepentant killer."

The Trimbachs' historical expose, American Indian Mafia, documents the major court findings of fact in the Peltier murder trial and reveals much about Peltier's claimed alibis.

John M. Trimbach
Trimbach & Associates, Inc.

First Url:
Book Synopsis

Second Url:
AIM Myth Busters

Book Title:
American Indian Mafia, An FBI Agent's True Story About Wounded Knee, Leonard Peltier, and the American Indian Movement (AIM)

Journalists - Click here for a Review Copy of American Indian Mafia, An FBI Agent's True Story About Wounded Knee, Leonard Peltier, and the American Indian Movement (AIM)

Order American Indian Mafia, An FBI Agent's True Story About Wounded Knee, Leonard Peltier, and the American Indian Movement (AIM) from Barnes and Nobles

Contact John M. Trimbach

Ask a question with InterviewNet


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe Trimbach has a guilty conscience. As a former fbi agent at Rapid City, he armed and trained the GOON squads that terrorized the Pine Ridge reservation in the '70's. In other words, he's directly responsible for the deaths, disappearances, and misery of thousands of Oglala Sioux families. Maybe his retirement took a hit in the recent economic downturn, and he's looking to make a quick buck. Either way, this man, this interloper, this bringer of destruction to American Indian communities has some nerve hawking this swill and throwing accusations around. Why won't he debate Leonard Peltier's supporters? Why has he put a stipulation of a $10,000 payment on any such appearance? Why is he afraid of being challenged with the truth? Because he's a snake oil salesman and a coward.

9:58 AM  
Blogger Snapple said...

Trimbach's book debates the AIM killers. Trimbach recently confronted Peltier himself, but Peltier hung his head and didn't say anything.

Trimbach's book has been well-reviewed by Native Americans who were victimized by AIM. Indeed, much of the book is based on testimony Trimbachs gathered from Indians such as Dennis Banks's former wife Ka-Mook.

If you had read the book, you would know that much of it is based on the testimony of Native Americans.

6:36 PM  
Anonymous James Simon said...

"Anonymous" sounds like the typical Peltier supporter who knows only what he's been told by AIM propagandists. For the record, Agent Trimbach was headquartered in Minneapolis and never armed or trained any Goons. Trimbach's book, American Indian Mafia, exposes such falsehoods and sets the historical record straight with over a thousand sourced footnotes. Trimbach's book counters each and every Peltier claim by stating the facts as established by Peltier's trial and every judge who reviewed the Peltier case and found him to be guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Co-author John Trimbach offered to debate the Peltier faithful, one by one, but was rebuffed by the LPDOC. Rumor has it he is looking to debate someone with credibility from academia since that appears to be one of the few venues where the Peltier myth of innocence still has a home.

2:04 AM  
Anonymous cargocult said...

Oh come on - there were dozens of deaths linked to GOON squads during that era on reservations - none investigated by the FBI, right?

It was a war for mineral resources, with the FBI taking the side of the mining companies - because it turned out that those barren reservations had gold, uranium, coal - all manner of goodies. A few "tribal leaders" were willing to cooperate with the companies, and they hired thugs as enforcers - no different from any other Third World resource extraction project.

All indications are that Peltier would have got off if he'd been tried with his first set of co-defendants - clearly the second trial was a rigged affair aimed at securing a conviction, probably for political reasons. Read the trial testimony yourself - the judge in the second trial was a lunatic.

A lot of other groups however realized that the AIM people were hotheads who caused more problems than they solved, and their violent actions allowed mining corporations to ratchet up the thuggery, likely with COINTELPRO assistance.

These issues are still going on today - for example, Peabody Coal and Navajo residents are struggling today over who gets access to the limited water supplies in the region. Likewise, Cameco is looking to expand their uranium mine in northern Nebraska, which feeds mine waste water into the Pine Ridge aquifer - and so it goes.

10:00 PM  
Blogger Snapple said...

Dear Cargo-

You are misinformed.

Ward Churchill published these fabrications in a KGB-sponsored propaganda mouthpiece called the Covert Action Information Bulletin.

The FBI did investigate the allegations that had specific names attached and the results are published on their site.

The lawyer for AIM, Mark Lane, took money from the KGB to finance his "research" and is the same lawyer as the people at Jonestown had. Lane was one of only a tiny number of people who "managed to escape" when everyone was murdered. After they were murdered, Lane wrote a book that claimed the CIA murdered them.

This is all just "active measures" from the old USSR propaganda. A lot is known because a KGB archivist named Mitrokhin defected.

I have many posts about this on my site.

The old leaders of AIM were criminals who had ties to the Communist Party and Soviet Intelligence.

8:06 AM  
Blogger silent bear said...

4:40 PM  

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