The Witch Tree

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My friend, Minnesota novelist Tony Schmitz, was paddling on Superior last week, and his buddy made this shot near Grand Portage. It’s of a famous cedar on the Ojibwe Reservation, known as the Witch Tree. Sacred, over 400 years old, historic, and only 15 feet tall, valiant in the face of storms. Why is it on this site? Well because people have been talking about the ethnic cleansing of Native Americans, in this comment thread… and Noam Chomsky says here that if you’re for the Palestinian right of return you should be for the Native Americans moving back to your property in the U.S., which has always been a perplexing argument for me, certainly I feel the resonance of American ethnic cleansing when I’m in Israel…

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