This Sunday, November 8, is National Aboriginal Veterans Day.
To help us learn more, we invited two Indigenous veterans to join us virtually to share their stories and lessons learned. William Greenwalt (USA) and Elder Wanbdi Wakita (Canada) each bring an interesting perspective on their experience of war as an Indigenous person.
In Canada, approximately over 12,000 Indigenous men and women volunteered to join the military for the First and Second World Wars, as well as Korea, and over 500,000 in the US.
In Canada, when an Indigenous person joined the military, they gained the right to vote but lost their Treaty status. Upon returning home after the war, Indigenous veterans were disenfranchised, meaning they lost the right to vote, and because they lost their Treaty status many veterans spent years trying to get their Treaty status reinstated.
Miigwetch Wanbdi Wakita, William Greenwalt, and all Aboriginal Veterans.