For several months the route of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) has been part of a contentious fight underpinning current tensions in American politics. In September President Obama and the Army Corp of Engineers suspended construction of the pipeline through land belonging to the Standing Rock Sioux tribe pending an ecological fallout survey. Since then massive protests have erupted at the construction site between Native American activists and private and public security teams hired by the construction companies working on the DAPL project. Throughout the protests civil rights groups have recorded dozens of human rights violations committed by the security teams.
Though many mainstream media sites have refused to cover the protests in favor of the 2016 presidential elections there has been widespread support for the rights of the Native Americans whose land the pipeline would run through. Last week a group of U.S. veterans also arrived on the protest site in support of the Standing Rock Sioux.
Early on the morning of December 4, 2016 President Obama and the Army Corps of Engineers have decided to deny the final building permits that would allow DAPL to continue construction on its current route. This decision is a massive victory for the thousands of protesters at the construction site, as well as independent media outlets and citizens around the country who have worked to protect the environment and the rights of the Native Americans in the path of the pipeline.