A second standoff could be in the works if the government gives in to environmental activists’ demands to confiscate livestock owned by Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy, the man’s wife asserts.
Speaking to The Guardian regarding calls from various wildlife groups asking the BLM to seize the embattled family’s cattle, Angie Bundy predicts the fallout of such actions would result in a bigger protest than the historic standoff that occurred in April 2014.
“We’re not afraid,” Angie says. “If you have a bunch of women and children standing out there and protesting, it’ll probably get more people out.”
Cliven Bundy, 70, along with two of his sons, was arrested in Oregon earlier this year on felony charges related to the showdown that occurred near his land two years ago.
On Monday, a group of nine environmental organizations petitioned BLM Director Neil Kornze for prompt removal of the Bundy livestock claiming their grazing habits endangered the Mojave desert tortoise’s habitat.
“As you are certainly aware, livestock grazing has direct and indirect adverse impacts on tortoise populations, ranging from crushing individuals and trampling dens to altering habitat in ways that reduce forage availability and nutrition for animals,” their letter to the BLM states.
(As Infowars reported in 2014, a range ecology expert has demonstrated and proved through the historical record a co-dependent relationship between the desert tortoise and grazing cattle. A related report shows how the BLM itself was also responsible for the deaths of hundreds of tortoises during the 90s and early 2000s. )
The groups theorize that with the Bundy patriarchs behind bars, the BLM should encounter significantly less resistance than during its previous cattle confiscation effort.
“Though we were disappointed that the April 2014 removal effort was not successful, we understand that the safety risks at that time were real. But now that Mr. Bundy and many of his allies are being held in federal prisons for their actions during the 2014 round-up event, we believe the threat to agency personnel on the ground is substantially less than it was two year ago. Therefore, we urge you to now take action to remove the trespass cattle that have been threatening the Mojave desert tortoise for over twenty years.”
“I really believe they’ve conveniently put our men in jails so they can come after our land and our resources,” Angie suspects.
According to Bundy’s daughter Baily Logue, the ranch is being maintained by the Bundy women and the cattle are currently in “great health.”
“Us women know how to ranch just like the guys do … The ranch is in great hands,” Logue says.
On Tuesday, lawyers for Cliven Bundy filed a lawsuit against high level government officials including House Minority Leader Harry Reid and President Barack Obama.
The complaint, submitted in Nevada district court, alleges “illegal, unconstitutional, intentional and malicious acts” on the part of the federal government and claims violations of the sixth, second, first and eighth amendments, and seeks a $50 million reward for damages.
The lawsuit charges Cliven Bundy has been subject to “cruel and usual punishment” as he has been in solitary confinement since his arrest in February. In addition to financial compensation, it asks for Bundy’s release from prison and dismissal of the indictment against him.