Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 The politics of genocide against...
 The rape of Indian territory- Foreign...
 Organizations in support of Amazonian...
 Back Cover

Group Title: Supysáua
Title: Supysáua
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00086794/00001
 Material Information
Title: Supysáua a documentary report on the conditions of the Indian peoples in Brazil
Alternate Title: Documentary report on the conditions of Indian peoples in Brazil
Physical Description: 64 p. : ill., map ; 27 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Indigena
Place of Publication: Berkeley Calif
Publication Date: 1974
Subject: Indians of South America -- Social conditions -- Brazil   ( lcsh )
Indians of South America -- Government relations -- Brazil   ( lcsh )
Indians, Treatment of -- Brazil   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: Brazil
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (p. 60-61).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00086794
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 03252817

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Table of Contents
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
    The politics of genocide against the Indians of Brazil
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
    The rape of Indian territory- Foreign aid and investment in the Brazilian Amazon
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
    Organizations in support of Amazonian Indian rights
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
    Back Cover
        Page 66
Full Text
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Published by:


A Documentary Report on the Conditions
of Indian Peoples in Brazil

Supysdua is an expression in nheengati (Tupi) which means "the truth, only
the truth."

In 1970, following a momentary wave of international criticism, the
National Indian Foundation of Brazil (FUNAI) published a small pamhplet
titled, Supyshua, 0 Indio Brasileiro in order to counter various accusations
that the Brazilian government was condoning a policy of genocide against its
remaining Indian peoples and tribes. At the same time, announcements were
made about the construction of the famous Trans-Amazonic Highway, and a
program was formulated for the "integration" of Indians into national
development and growth.

This report, compiled by INDIGENA and AMERICAN FRIENDS OF
BRAZIL, takes the same title as the National Indian Foundation pamphlet.
Its purposes are to document the truth about Indian policy and practice in
Brazil since 1970, and to factually document what is happening to Brazilian
Indian tribes in the name of supposed "progress," "integration," and

Photographs in this pamphlet are of the Wausha tribe, an Arawak-speaking group of 100
people who live along the Batovi River in the Xingu National Park, Mato Grosso, Brazil.


Published by:
Typesetting by:
Printed by:

A Documentary Report

on the Conditions of

Indian Peoples in Brazil

INDIGENA (the Spanish word for Native American) serves as a docu-
mentation center in the United States with up-to-date information on the
legal, social, economic, political, and cultural conditions of indigenous
peoples of the Western Hemisphere.
The central purpose of INDIGENA is to create a reciprocal information
exchange between Native American peoples and organizations throughout
the Americas in support of these people's struggles to become more
powerful, to be self-reliant, and to determine for themselves the social and
cultural systems under which they want to live.
As a secondary aim, INDIGENA attempts to inform and educate non-
Indian publics about the conditions of native peoples, their struggles against
racism and discrimination, and their quest for social, economic, and cultural
The quarterly newsletter of INDIGENA, News From Indian America, can
obtained by writing: INDIGENA
P.O. Box 4073
Berkeley, Ca. 94704

AMERICAN FRIENDS OF BRAZIL is an independent, non-profit organi-
zation whose main activity is to publish the Brazilian Information Bulletin.
The Bulletin's main thrust is to document and disseminate information on:
(1) repression in Brazil; (2) the U.S. role in supporting that repression;
(3) the struggle in and outside Brazil against the repression; (4) Brazil's role
in Latin America as a sub-imperial power; and (5) the so-called Brazilian
"economic miracle."
The quarterly Brazilian Information Bulletin can be obtained by writing:
P.O. Box 2279, Station A
Berkeley, Ca. 94702

Comprehensive coverage of news about Indian
peoples of Brazil (in Portuguese) as reported
in Brazil's two leading daily newspapers O
BRASIL as well as the weekly newspaper,
OPINIAO, can be obtained by writing:
P.O. Box 4267
Berkeley, California 94704




by Norman Lewis


An Urgent Document by the Bishops and Priests of the Brazilian
Amazon, December 25, 1973.


Document by a Group of Brazilian Anthropologists Presented at the
XLI International Congress of Americanists, Mexico City, September





MAP (Inside Back Cover)
-- I- -



In 1967, opposition members of the Brazilian Congress called for a
full-scale investigation of the Indian Protection Service of Brazil (SPI). The
voluminous report was published in March 1968, describing hundreds of
crimes committed against Indian peoples ranging from bacteriological war-
fare and the bombing of Indian villages to outright torture and the failure to
provide assistance to Indians in times of need.
"It is not only through embezzlement of funds," Attorney General Jader
Figueredo wrote in his report, "but by the admission of sexual perversions,
murders and all other crimes listed in the penal code against Indians and
their property, that one can see that the Indian Protection Service was for
years a den of corruption and indiscriminate killings."
The head of the Indian Protection Service, Major Luis Neves, was alone
accused of 42 crimes, including complicity in several murders, the robbery
and illegal sale of Indian lands, and the embezzlement of $300,000.
World attention focused upon Brazilian Indian policy with the publication
in 1969 of an article by the British journalist, Norman Lewis, titled
"Genocide, From Fire and Sword to Arsenic and Bullets Civilization Has
Sent Six Million Indians to Extinction." Lewis's article was translated into
several languages, and immediately caused a scandal in the international
press. Several newspapers accused the Brazilian government of condoning a
policy of genocide against its remaining Indian tribes, and called for a
response by various governments and international agencies throughout the
Anxious about its image abroad, in late 1968 the military government of
Brazil responded to these accusations, creating a new National Indian
Foundation (FUNAI) to replace the corrupt Indian Protection Service (SPI)
and promising that Indian peoples would be now protected in their rights to
life, cultural freedom, and land. The international community was impressed
by these promises, and within the short space of a year silence had replaced a
brief period of world concern.
By 1970, the international press began to refocus its attention upon
another aspect of Brazilian government policy, the opening up of the vast
interior regions of the Brazilian Amazon. Articles appeared describing the
construction of the new Trans-Amazonic Highway, a 3,000 mile road which
would stretch from the Atlantic Ocean in northeastern Brazil to the jungle
frontier with Peru. The "Green Hell" suddenly became a businessman's
paradise, a garden of mineral, timber, and agricultural wealth. Detailed
government plans were described predicting the inevitable development and
growth of Brazil, the forging of a mighty and powerful nation on the back of
the rich resources of its unexplored and immense interior.
True, following 1970, there were still the periodic reports about Indians,
but these were typically about bloody skirmishes between highway workers
and supposedly "hostile" and "savage" tribes along the newly opened
frontiers. Brazil was on the move, and it had all the mystery and fantasy of
the most dramatic episodes out of the American West.
The following document is the first of its kind to be published in the
United States, and radically differs from most accounts of the occupation of
the Brazilian Amazon which have appeared in the international, and
particularly the North American, press. Specifically, four reports are pub-
lished here which factually document the continued, brutal, and systematic
attempt to exterminate the remaining 120,000 Indian peoples of Brazil.

The first report is an abridged version of Norman Lewis's article on
"Genocide," which created the original international scandal about Indian
policy in Brazil. The second article, which takes its title from a well known
Brazilian poem, was written by a group of Brazilian bishops and clerics, and
documents the contemporary nature of Indian policy in Brazil. The third
article was written by a group of unnamed Brazilian anthropologists, and
distributed at the XLI International Congress of Americanists, Mexico City,
September 1974. The final document is a chart of foreign aid and investment
programs in the Amazon region, especially as these pose a threat to Indian
land and territorial rights.*
The two documents by the Brazilian clerics and anthropologists are
particularly important, as they represent an urgent plea on the part of
knowledgeable persons within Brazil that international attention again focus
upon the situation of Brazilian Indian tribes. Both documents were written
under the most severe conditions of political repression, and were cour-
ageously sent to the exterior in order to mobilize international action and
concern. Several points which they make are extremely important to note.
First, both documents argue that there is essentially no difference
between the former Indian Protection Serivce (SPI) and the newly created,
and now bureaucratically entrenched, National Indian Foundation (FUNAI).
If differences do exist, they appear in the nature of rhetoric and philosophy,
rather than in the actual consequences of government policy on Indian lives.
Since 1970, FUNAI, an agency within the Brazilian Ministry of the
Interior, has opted for a policy of "rapid integration" of indigenous
populations into Brazilian national life. This policy assumes that Indians
should be incorporated into the frontiers of national expansion, rather than
positively protected on their aboriginal territories and lands.
In 1957, the Brazilian anthropologist, Darcy Ribeiro, demonstrated that
all forms of "rapid integration" were merely euphemisms for Indian physical
and cultural death. Of 230 tribes known to exist in Brazil in 1900, Ribeiro
found that more than one-third (87 tribes) had become extinct in their
contacts with Brazilian national society. Between 1900 and 1957, Indian
population in Brazil dropped from over 1 million to less than 200,000
persons, leaving a spattering of "contacted tribes" who were culturally
devastated and faced severe conditions of disease, depopulation, malnutri-
tion, and poverty.
The fate of the more than 125 isolated Indian nations who still remained
in the Amazon and Central regions of Brazil, Ribeiro argued, would depend
on the ability of the government to provide a protective buffer between
Indian communities and the frontiers of national expansion. Rapid integra-
tion, he concluded, would spell their doom.
Second, these documents provide unquestionable evidence that acts of
genocide continue to be committed against specific Indian groups. These
genocidal acts are more subtle, and hence less dramatic, than the bombing of
Indian villages or the wholesale slaughter of Indian women and children.
Their consequences, however, are more or less the same.
In essence, at the present moment, and increasingly since the construction
of the Trans--Amazonic Highway in 1970, Indian peoples have been left
unprotected in their constitutionally recognized rights to territories and
lands (Article 98 of the Brazilian Constitution). Although FUNAI originally
promised to demarcate several Indian Parks and reserves, these promises have
gone unfulfilled, resulting in the invasion of Indian lands by highways,

Each of these reports refers to specific tribal groups. We have intentionally maintained
the orthography used for tribal names in the original documents, rather than converting
them to standard Portuguese or English spellings. The spellings are close enough in each
document not to cause confusion for the reader.

development projects, mineral and agricultural enterprises. These invasions
have brought with them outsiders, and led to the rapid spread of epidemics
and disease. In the short space of a few months, whole tribes have been
ecologically uprooted, and faced with depopulation, disease, and death.
These reports document numerous cases where the systematic expropria-
tion of Indian lands has taken place under the purview, and often with the
outright approval, of FUNAI. As an agency within the Brazilian Ministry of
the Interior, the National Indian Foundation has tended to support powerful
economic groups, rather than protect Indian lives. In no uncertain terms, it
has become one of the key institutions in promoting the development and
occupation of the Amazon, rather than a staunch defender of Indian rights.
Finally, each of these documents stresses the need for an international
effort in support of Brazilian Indian rights. Y-Juca-Pirama, the document by
members of the Brazilian Church, correctly argues that because of the
political climate in Brazil, more public awareness of these issues often exists
in the exterior than within the country itself. Similarly, the document by the
group of Brazilian anthropologists argues that the government of Brazil
should be held accountable, under Resolution 96 of the United Nations and
Resolution 107 of the International Labor Organization Accords, before
international law.
The first of these resolutions defines the crime of genocide under
international law. The second sets specific limits on government programs
which are intended to integrate tribal or ethnic minorities. Both resolutions
have been signed by the government of Brazil.
The need for an international effort in support of Indian rights is even
more strongly provided by the evidence concerning foreign aid and invest-
ment in the Amazon region. The chart compiled from the files of IN-
DIGENA and AMERICAN FRIENDS OF BRAZIL which serves as the final
document in this pamphlet shows the many areas where foreign enterprises,
of one sort or another, have invaded Indian territories and lands. Both the
pace and structure of the occupation of the Amazon has been determined
from outside of Brazil, leading to a philosophy which promotes "develop-
ment" at any human costs and the imminent ecological devastation of one of
the largest natural areas in the world. Clearly, a major part of the
responsibility for what is taking place in the Brazilian Amazon lies with these
foreign enterprises and concerns.
There is a madness called "progress" and "civilization" which has infested
the body politic of Brazil. This madness is endemic to the Americas, and has
always neglected the rights of small tribal minorities to exist. In the name of
this disease, millions of Indian people have been killed, and today thousands
more are dying in the Amazon region of South America.
It is time, we believe, that this madness be brought to an end. It is time
that the world community again affirm the rights of these peoples to exist.
In the name of compassion, humanity, and international law, it is time that
the criminals be held accountable, and the victims be provided with the
conditions to live.

November, 1974





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From fire and sword to arsenic and
bullets-civilization has sent six million
Indians to extinction.

by Norman Lewis

The following article is an abridged version of
"Genocide" by Norman Lewis (The Sunday Times,
London, February 23, 1969), as published in the
pamphlet Slave or Dead (Ata Kando, Holland, 1971).

If you happened to be. one of those who felt
affection for the gentle, backward civilizations -
Nagas, Papuans, Mois of Vietnam, Polynesian and
Melanesian remnants the shy primitive peoples,
daunted and overshadowed by the Juggernaut
advance of our ruthless age, then 1968 was a bad year
for you.
By the descriptions of all who had seen them,
there were no more inoffensive and charming human
beings on the planet than the forest Indians of Brazil,
and brusquely we were told they had been rushed to
the verge of extinction. The tragedy of the Indian in
the USA in the last century was being repeated, but it
was being compressed into a shorter time. Where a
decade ago there had been hundreds of Indians, there
were now tens. An American magazine reported with
nostalgia on a tribe of which only 135 members had
survived ... too gentle almost to hunt. They lived as
naked as Adam and Eve in the nightfall of an
innocent history, catching a few fish, collecting
groundnuts, playing their flutes, making love .
waiting for death. We learned that it was due only to
the paternal solicitude of the Brazilian Government's
Indian Protection Service that they had survived until
this day.
In all such monitory accounts and there had
been many of them there was a blind spot, a lack
of candor, a defect in social responsibility, an evident
aversion to pointing to the direction from which
doom approached.

It seemed that we were expected to suppose that
the Indians were simply fading away, killed off by the
harsh climate of the times, and we were invited to
inquire no further. It was left to the Brazilian
Government itself to resolve the mystery, and in
March 1968 it did so, with brutal frankness, and with
little attempt at self defense. The tribes had been
virtually exterminated, not despite all the efforts of
the Indian Protection Service, but with its connivance
often its ardent cooperation.
The Service, admitted General Albuquerque Lima,
the Brazilian Minister of the Interior, had been
converted into an instrument for the Indians'
oppression, and had therefore been dissolved. There
was 'to be a judicial inquiry into the conduct of 134
functionaries. A full newspaper page in small print
was required to list the crimes with which these men
were charged. Speaking informally, the Attorney
General, Senhor Jader Figueiredo, doubted whether

10 of the Service's employees out of a total over over
1000 would be fully cleared of guilt.
The official report was calm phlegmatic almost
all the more effective therefore in its exposure of
the atrocity it contained. Pioneers league with
corrupt politicians had continually usurped Indian
lands, destroyed whole tribes in a cruel struggle in
which bacteriological warfare had been employed, by
issuing clothing impregnated with the virus of
smallpox, and by poisoned food supplies. Children
had been abducted and mass murder gone
unpunished. The Government itself was blamed to
some extent for the Service's increasing starvation
of resources over a period of 30 years. The Service
had also had to face "the disastrous impact of
missionary activity."
Next day the Attorney General met the Press, and
was prepared to supply all the details. A commission
had spent 58 days visiting Indian Protection Service
posts all over the country collecting evidence of
abuses and atrocities.
The huge losses sustained by the Indian tribes in
this tragic decade were catalogued in part. Of 19,000
Munducurus believed to have existed in the Thirties,
only 1200 were left. The strength of the Guaranis had
been reduced from 5000 to 300. There were 400
Carajas left out of 4000. Of the Cintas Largas, who
had been attacked from the air and driven into the
mountains, possibly 500 had survived out of 10,000.
The proud and noble nation of the Kadiweus the
Indian Cavaliers had shrunk to a pitiful scrounging
band of about 200. A few hundred only remained of
the formidable Chavantes who prowled in the
background of Peter Fleming's Brazilian journey, but
they had been reduced to mission fodder the same
melancholy fate that had overtaken the Bororos, who
helped to change Levi-Strauss's views on the nature of
human evolution. Many tribes were now represented
by a single family, a few by one or two individuals.
Some, like the Tapaiunas in this case from a gift of
sugar laced with arsenic had disappeared altogether.
It is estimated that between 50,000 and 100,000
Indians survive today. Brazil's leading social historian
believes that not a single one will be alive by 1980.
Senhor Figueiredo estimated that property worth
62 million dollars had been stolen from the Indians in
the past 10 years; cattle and personal possessions. He
added, "It is not only through the embezzlement of
funds, but by the admission of sexual perversions,
murders and all other crimes listed in the penal code
against Indians and their property, that one can see
that the Indian Protection Service was for years a den
of corruption and indiscriminate killings." The head
of the service, Major Luis Neves, was accused of 42
crimes, including collusion in several murders, the

illegal sale of lands, and the embezzlement of
300,000 dollars. The documents containing the
evidence collected by the Attorney General weighed
103 kilograms, he informed the newspapermen, and
amounted to a total of 5115 pages.
In the following days there were more headlines
and more statements by the Ministry:
"Rich landowners of the municipality of Pedro
Alfonso attacked the tribe of Craos and killed
about 100."
"The worst slaughter took place in Aripuana,
where the Cintas Largas Indians were attacked
from the air using sticks of dynamite."
"The Maxacalis were given fire-water by the
landowners who employed gunmen to shoot them
down when they were drunk."
"Landowners engaged a notorious pistoleiro
and his band to massacre the Canelas Indians."
"The Nhambiquera Indians were mown down
by machine-gun fire."
"Two tribes of the Patach6s were exterminated
by giving them smallpox injection."
"In the Ministry of the Interior it was stated
yesterday that crimes committed by certain
ex-functionaries of the SPI amounted to more
than 1000, ranging from tearing out Indians'
fingernails to allowing them to die without
"To exterminate the tribe Beicos-de-Pau, Ramis
Bucair, Chief of the 6th Inspectorate, explained,
an expedition was formed which went up the
River Arinos carrying presents and a great quantity
of foodstuffs for the Indians. These were mixed
with arsenic and formicides.... Next day a great
number of the Indians died, and the whites spread
the rumor that this was the result of an epidemic."

As ever, the frontiers with Colombia and Peru -
scene of the piratical adventures of the old
British-registered Peruvian Amazon Company gave
trouble. A minor boom in wild rubber set off by the
last war had filled this area with a new generation of
men with hearts of flint. In the 1940s one rubber
company punished those of their Indian slaves who
fell short in their daily collection by the loss of an ear
for the first offense, then the loss of the second ear,
then death. When chased by Brazilian troops, they
simply moved, with all their labor, across the
Peruvian border. Today, most of the local landowners
are slightly less spectacular in their oppressions. One
landowner is alleged to have chained lepers to posts,
leaving them to relieve themselves where they stood,
without food and water for a week. He was a bad
example, but his method of keeping the Ticuna
Indians in a state of slavery was the one commonly in
use. They were paid 0.50 cruzeiros (15 cents) for a
day's labor and then charged 3 cruzeiros for a piece
of soap. Those who attempted to escape were
arrested (by the landowner's private police force) as
thieves. Senhora Neves da Costa Vale, a delegate of
the Federal Police, who investigated this case, and the
local conditions in general, found that little had
changed since the bad old days. She noted that
hundreds of Indians were being enslaved by

landowners on both sides of the frontier, and that
Colombians and Peruvians hunted for Ticuna Indians
up the Brazilian rivers. Semi-civilized Indians, she
said, were being carried off for enrollment as bandits
in Colombia. The area is known as Solim6es, from the
local name of the Amazon, and Senhora Neves was
shocked by the desperate physical condition of the
Indians. Lepers were plentiful, and she confirmed the
existence of an island called Armaca where Indians
who were old or sick were concentrated to await
death. She said that they were without assistance of
any kind.
From all sources it was a tale of disaster. No one
knew just how many Indians had survived, because
there was no way of counting them in their last
mountain and forest strongholds. The most optimistic
estimate put the figure at 100,000, but others
thought they might be as few as half this number.
Nor could more than the roughest estimate be made
of the speed of the processes of extermination. All
the accounts suggest that when the Europeans first
came on the scene four centuries back they found a
dense and lively population. Fray Gasper, the diarist
of Orellana's expedition, claims that a force of
50,000 once attacked their ship. At that time the
experts believe that the Indians may have numbered
between three and six millions. By 1900, the same
authorities calculate, there may have been a million
left. But in reality, it is all a matter of guesswork.
The first Europeans to set eyes on the Indians of
Brazil came ashore from the fleet of Pedro Alvares
Cabral in the year 1500 to a reception that enchanted
them, and when the ships set sail again they left with
Pero Vaz de Caminha, official clerk to the
expedition, sent .off a letter to the king that crackled
with enthusiasm.
(Here follows an account of the first favorable
impression of the Indians' pleasing looks, manners,
and generosity, which influenced Voltaire to
formulate his theory of the Noble Savage; the
economic conditions in Europe influencing the
Spanish and Portuguese to seek colonies; and the
resulting destructive effect of these initial contacts on
the Indians).
The atrocities of the Conquistadores described by
Bishop Bartolomeo de Las Casas, who was an
eyewitness of what must have been the greatest of all
wars of extermination, resist the imagination. There is
something remote and shadowy about horror on so
vast a scale. Numbers begin to mean nothing, as one
reads with a sort of detached, unfocused belief of the
mass burnings, the flaying, the disembowellings, and
the mutilations.
Twelve millions were killed, Las Casas says, most
of them in frightful ways.
Wherever they could be reached, in the Caribbean
islands, and on the coastal plains, the Indians were
exterminated. Those of Brazil were saved from
extinction by a tropical rain-forest, as big as Europe,
and to the south of it, the half million square miles of
thicket and swampland the Mato Grosso that
remained sufficiently mysterious until our days for
explorers like Colonel Fawcett to lose their lives
searching in it for golden cities.

The processes of murder and enslavement slowed
down during the next three centuries, but did so
because there were fewer Indians left to murder and
enslave. Great expeditions to provide labor for the
plantations of Maranhio and Pari depopulated all the
easily accessible villages near the main Amazonian
waterways, and the loss of life is said to have been
greater than that involved in the slave trade with
Africa. Those who escaped the plantations often
finished in the Jesuit reservations religious
concentration camps where conditions were hardly
less severe, and trifling offenses were punished with
terrible floggings or imprisonment: "The sword and
iron rod are the best kind of preaching," as the Jesuit
missionary Jose de Anchieta put it.
By the 19th century some sort of melancholy
stalemate had been reached. Indian slaves were harder
to get, and with the increasing rationalization of
supply and the consequent fall in cost of Negroes
from West Africa who in any case stood up to the
work better the price of the local product was
undercut. As the Indians became less valuable as a
commodity it became possible to see them through a
misty Victorian eye, and at least one novel about
them was written, swaddled in sentiment, and in the
mood of The Last of the Mohicans. A more practical
viewpoint reasserted itself at the time of the great
rubber boom at the turn of the century, when it was
discovered that the harmless and picturesque Indians
were better equipped that Negroes to search the
forests for rubber trees. While the eyes of the world
were averted, all the familiar tortures and excesses
were renewed, until with the collapse of the boom
and the revival of conscience, the Indian Protection
Service was formed. In the raw, abrasive vulgarity it
displayed in its consumption of easy wealth, the
Brazilian rubber boom surpassed anything that had
been seen before in the Western world since the days
of the Klondike. It was centered on Manaus which
had been built where it was at the confluence of two
great, navigable rivers, the Amazon and the Rio
Negro, for its convenience in launching slaving
expeditions, a city that had fallen into a decline that
matched the wane in interest for its principal
With the invention of the motor car and the
rubber tire, and the recognition that the hevea tree of
the Amazon produced incomparably the best rubber,
Manaus was back in business, converted instantly to a
tropical Gomorrah.
The most dynamic of the great rubber
corporations of those days was the British-registered
Peruvian Amazon Company, operating in the
ill-defined northwestern frontier of Brazil, where it
could play off the governments of Colombia, Peru
and Brazil against each other, all the better to
establish its vast, nightmarish empire of exploitation
and death.
(Here are mentioned gruesome descriptions of life
on this plantation, where Indian slaves were whipped,
tortured, killed for profit and sport, and the
stud-farm where Indian women were made to
produce the slave labor of the future.)
The worldwide scandal of the Peruvian Amazon
Company, exposed by Sir Roger Casement, coincided
with the collapse of the rubber boom caused by the

competition of the new Malayan plantations, and a
crisis of conscience was sharpened by the threat of
economic disaster.
When Brazilians had got used to the idea that their
rubber income was substantially at an end, they
began to examine the matter of its cost in human
lives in the light of the fact, now generally known,
that Peruvian Amazon Company alone had virtually
murdered 30,000 Indians. Brazil was now Indian-
conscious again and its legislators reminded each
other of the principles so nobly enunciated by Jose
Bonifacio in 1823, and embodied in the constitution:
"We must never forget," Bonifacio said, "that we are
usurpers, in this land, but also that we are
It was a mood responsible for the determination
that nothing of this kind should ever happen again,
and an Indian Protection Service unique and
extraordinary in its altruism in America was
founded in 1910 under the leadership of Marshall
Rondon, himself an Indian, and therefore, it was
supposed, exceptionally qualified to be able to
interpret the Indian's needs.
Rondon's solution was to integrate the Indian into
the mainstream of Brazilian life to educate him, to
change his faith, to break his habit of nomadism, to
change the color of his skin by intermarriage, to draw
him away from the forests and into the cities, to turn
him into a wage-earner and a voter. He spent the last
30 years of his life trying to do this, but just before
his death came a great change of heart. He no longer
believed that integration was to be desired. It had all
been, he said now, a tragic mistake.
The conclusion of all those who have lived among
and studied the Indian beyond the reach of
civilization is that he is the perfect human product of
his environment from which it should follow that
he cannot be removed without calamitous results.
Ensconced in the forest in which his ancestors have
lived for thousands of years, he is as much a
component of it as the tapir and the jaguar;
self-sufficient, the artificer of all his requirements, at
terms with his surroundings, deeply conscious of his
place in the living patterns of the visible and invisible
It is admitted now that the average Indian
Protection Service official recruited to deal with this
complicated but satisfactory human being was all too
often venal, ignorant and witless, and it was natural
that he should call to his aid the missionaries who
were in Brazil by the thousand, and were backed by
resources that he himself lacked. But the missionary
record was not an imposing one, and even those
incomparable colonizers of the faith, the Jesuits, had
little to show but failure.
In the early days they had put their luckless
converts into long white robes, segregated the sexes,
and set them to "godly labors," lightened by the
chanting of psalms in Latin, mind-developing
exercises in mnemonics, and speculative discussions
on such topics as the number of angels able to perch
on the point of a pin. It was offered as a foretaste of
the delights of the Christian heaven, complete with its
absence of marrying or giving in marriage, and many
of the converts died of melancholy. After a while

demoralization spread to the fathers themselves and
some of them went off the rails to the extent of
dabbling in the slave trade. When these settlements
were finally overrun by the bloodthirsty pioneers and
frontiersmen from Sao Paulo, death can hardly have
been more than a happy release for the listless and
bewildered Indian flock.
When the Indian Protection Service was formed
the missionaries of the various Catholic orders were
rapidly being outnumbered by non-conformists,
mostly from the United States. These were a very
different order of man, no longer armed only with
hellfire and damnation, but with up-to-date
techniques of salesmanship in their approach to the
problems of conversion. By 1968 the Jornal do Brasil
could state: "In reality, those in command of these
Indian Protection posts are North American
missionaries they are all in the posts and they
disfigure the original Indian culture and enforce the
acceptance of Protestantism."
Whereas the Catholics for all their disastrous
mistakes, had on the whole led simple, often austere
lives, the non-conformists seemed to see themselves as
the representatives of a more ebullient and
materialistic brand of the faith. They made a point of
installing themselves, wherever they went, in large,
well-built stone houses, inevitably equipped with an
electric generator and every modern labor-saving
device. Some of them even had their own planes. If
there were roads they had a car or two, and when
they traveled by river they preferred a launch with an
outboard engine to the native canoe habitually used
by the Catholic fathers.
As soon as Indians were attracted to the
neighborhood a mission store might be opened, and
the first short step towards the ultimate goal of
conversion be taken by the explanation of the value
and uses of money, and how with it the Indian could
obtain all those goods which it was hoped would
become necessary to him. The missionaries are
absolutely candid and even self-congratulatory about
their methods. To hold the Indian, wants must be
created and then continually expanded wants that
in such remote parts only the missionary can supply.
A greed for unessential trifles must be inculcated and
fostered. The Portuguese verb employed to describe
this process is conquistar and it is applied without
differentiation to subjection by force or guile. What
normally happens is that presents usually of food -
are left where the uncivilized Indians can find them.
Great patience is called for. It may be years before
the tribesmen are won over by repeated overtures,
but when it happens the end is in sight. All that
remains is to encourage them to move their village
into the mission area, and let things take their natural
course. In nine cases out of 10 the local landowner
has been waiting for the Indians to make such a move
- he may have been alerted by the missionary himself
- and as soon as it happens he is ready to occupy the
tribal land. The Indians are now trapped. They
cannot go back, but at the time it seems unimportant,
because for a little longer the missionary continues to
feed them, although now the matter of conversion
will be broached. This usually presents slight
difficulty and natural Indian politeness and in this
case gratitude accomplishes the rest. Whether the

Indian understands what it is all about is another
matter. He will be asked to go through what he may
regard with great sympathy as a rain-making
ceremony, as water is splashed about, and formulas
repeated in an unknown language. Beyond that it is
likely to be a case of let well alone. Any missionary
will tell you that an Indian has no capacity for
abstract thought. How can he comprehend the
mystery and universality of God when the nearest to
a deity his own traditions have to offer may be a
common tribal ancestor seen as a jaguar or an
From now on the orders and the prohibitions will
be destroyed, and the Indian who has never worn
anything but a beautifully made and decorated
penis-sheath to suppress unexpected erections, must
now clothe himself from the mission's store of
cast-offs, to the instant detriment of his health. He
becomes subject to skin diseases, and since in practice
clothes once put on are never taken off again,
pneumonia is the frequent outcome of allowing
clothing to dry on the body after a rainstorm.
The man who has hitherto lived by practicing the
skills of the hunter and horticulturist the Indians
are devoted and incomparable gardeners of their kind
- now finds himself, broom or shovel in hand as an
odd-job man about the mission compound. He
shrinks visibly within his miserable, dirty clothing, his
face becomes puckered and wizened, his body more
disease-ridden, his mind more apathetic. There is a
terrible testimony to the process in the Brazilian
Ministry of Agriculture's handbook on Indians, in
which one is photographed genial and smiling on the
first day of his arrival from the jungle, and then the
same man who by this time appears to be crazy with
grief is shown again, 10 years later. "His expression
makes comment unnecessary," the caption says.
"Ninety percent of his people have died of influenza
and measles. Little did he imagine the fate that
awaited them when they sought their first contact
with the whites."
There is a ring about these stories of enticement
down the path to extinction, of the cruel fairy-tale of
children trapped by the witch in the house made of
ginger break and barley sugar. But even the slow
decay, the living death of the missionaries' compound
was not the worst that could happen. What could be
far more terrible would be the decision of the
fazendeiro as so often happened to recruit the
labor of the Indians whose lands he had invaded, apd
who were left to starve.
Extract from the atrocity commission's report:
"In his evidence Senhor Jordao Aires said that
eight years before the [600] Ticuna Indians were
brought by Fray Jeremias to his estate. The
missionary succeeded in convincing them that the
end of the world was about to take place, and
Belem was the only place where they would be
safe.... Senhor Aires confirmed that when the
Indians disobeyed his orders his private police
chained them hand and foot. Federal Police
Delegate Neves said that some of the Indians thus
chained were lepers, and had lost their fingers."
Officially it is the Indian Protection Service and
134 of its agents that are on trial, but from all these

reports the features of a more sinister personality
soon emerge, the fazendeiro the great landowner -
and in his shadow the SPI agent shrinks to a
subservient figure, too often corrupted by bribes.
One would have wished to find an English
equivalent for this Portuguese word fazendeiro, but
there is none. Titles such as landowner or estate
owner which call to mind nothing harsher than the
mild despotism of the English class system will not
do. The fazendeiro by European standards is huge in
anachronistic power, often the lord of a tropical fief
as large as an English county, protected from central
authority's interference by vast distances, the
traditions of submission, and the absolute silence of
his vassals. All the lands he holds much of which
may not even have been explored have been taken
by him or by his ancestors from the Indians, or have
been bought from others who have obtained it in this
way. In most cases his great fortress-like house, the
fazenda, has been built by the labor of the Indian
slaves, who have been imprisoned when necessary in
its dungeons. In the past a fazendeiro could only
survive by his domination of a ferocious environment,
and although in these days he will probably have had
a university education, he may still sleep with a
loaded rifle beside his bed. Lonely fazendas are still
occasionally attacked. by wild Indians (i.e. Indians
with a grievance against the whites), by gold
prospectors turned bandit, by downright professional
bandits themselves, or by their own mutinous slaver.
The fazendeiro defends himself with a bodyguard
enrolled from the toughest of his workers many of
them, in the backwoods, fugitives from justice.
It has often been hard by ordinary Christian
standards for the fazendeiro to be a good man, only
too easy for him to degenerate into a Gilles de Rais,
or some murderous and unpredictable Ivan the
Terrible of the Amazon forests. It can be Eisenstein's
"Thunder Over Mexico" complete with the horses
galloping over men buried up to their necks or
worse. Some of the stories told about the great
houses of Brazil of the last century in their days of
respectable slavery and Roman license bring the
imagination to a halt: a male slave accused of some
petty crime castrated and burned alive ... a pretty
young girl's teeth ordered by her jealous mistress to
be drawn, and her breasts amputated, to be on the
safe side ... another, found pregnant, thrown alive
into the kitchen furnace. An extract from the report
by the President of last year's inquiry commission
into atrocities against the Indians corrects the
complacent viewpoint that we live in milder days.

"In the 7th Inspectorate, Parana, Indians were
tortured by grinding the bones of their feet in the
angle of two wooden stakes, driven into the ground.
Wives. took turns with their husbands in applying this
torture." It is alleged, as well, in this investigation,
that there were cases of an Indian's naked body being
smeared with honey before leaving him to be bitten
to death by ants.
Why all this pointless cruelty? What is it that
causes men and women probably of extreme
respectability in their everyday lives to torture for the

sake of torturing? Montaigne believed that cruelty is
the revenge of the weak man for his weakness; a sort
of sickly parody of valor. "The killing after a victory
is usually done by the rabble and baggage officials."
It is the beginning of the rainy season, and from an
altitude of 2000 feet the forest smokes here and there
as if under sporadic bombardment, as the sun sucks
up the vapor from a local downpour.
The Mato Grosso seen from the air is supposed to
offer a scene of monotonous green, but this is not
always so. At this moment, for example, a pitchblack
swamp lapped by ivory sands presents itself. It is
obscured by shifting feathers of cloud which part
again to show a Cheddar Gorge in lugubrious reds.
The forest returns, pitted with lakes which appear to
contain not water, but brilliant chemical solutions;
copper sulphate, gentian violet. The air taxi settles
wobbling to a scrubbed patch of earth and vultures go
by like black rags.
All these small towns in this meager earth are the
same. An unpronouncible Garani name for a street
of clapboard tapering off to mud and palm thatch at
each end; a general store, a hotel, Laramiestyle with
men asleep on the veranda; a scarecrow horse, bones
about to burst through the hide, tied up in a square
yard of shade; hairy pigs; aromatic dust blown up by
the hot breeze.
Life is in slow motion and on a small scale. The
store sells cigarettes, meticulously bisected if
necessary with a razor blade, ladlefuls of purgative
pills a half-inch in diameter, and handsomely-tooled
gun holsters. The customers come in not to buy but
to be there, wandering through the paper-chains of
dusty dried fish hanging from the ceiling. They are
Indians, but so de-racialized by the climate of
boredom and their grubby cotton clothing, that they
could be Eskimos or Vietnamese. They have the
expression of men gazing, narrow-eyed, into crystal
balls, and they speak in childish voices of great
sweetness. Like all Indians everywhere, the smallest
intake of alcohol produces an instant deadly change.
The only entertainment the town offers is a
cartomancer, operating largely on a barter basis. He
tells fortunes in a negative but realistic way,
concerned not so much with good luck, but the
avoidance of bad. All the children's eyes are rimmed
with torpid, hardly moving flies. The fazenda, some
miles away, has absorbed everything; owns the whole
town, even the main street itself.
This is a place where cruelty is supposed to have
happened, but the surface of things has been patched
and renovated and the aroma of atrocity has
dispersed. Everything can be explained away now in
terms of extreme exaggeration, or the malice of
political enemies, and all the witnesses for the defense
have been mustered. Finally, the everyday violence
of a violent country are quoted to remind one that
this is not Europe.
Senhor Fulano lives with his family in three
rooms in one of the few brick-built houses. His
position is ambiguous. An ex-Indian Protection
Service agent, he has been cleared of financial
malpractices, and hopes shortly for employment in
the new Foundation. He has an Abyssinian face with
melancholy, faintly disdainful eyes, a high, Nilotic

forehead, and a delicate Semite nose. He is proud of
the fact that his father was half Negro, half Jewish; a
trader who captured in marriage a robust girl from
one of the Indian tribes.
"Not all fazendeiros are bad," Fulano says. "Far
from it. On the contrary, the majority are good men.
People are jealous of their success, and they are on
the lookout for a way to damage them.
"In the case you mention the man was a thief and
a trouble maker. As a punishment he was locked in a
shed, nothing more. He was drunk, you understand,
and he set fire to the shed himself. He died in the fire,
yes, but the doctor certified accidental death. There
was no case for a police inquiry. In 30 years' service I
have only seen one instance of violence if you wish
to call it violence. The Indians were drunk with
cachaca again, and they attacked the post. They were
given a chance by firing over the heads, but it didn't
stop them. They were mad with liquor. What could
we do? There's no blood on my hands." He holds
them up as if for confirmation. They are small and
well cared for with pale, pinkish palms. His wife
rattles about out of sight in the scullery of their tiny
flat. There is a picture of the President on the wall,
and another of his little girl dressed for her first
communion, and no evidence in the cheap, ugly
furniture that Senhor Fulano has been able to feather
his nest to any useful extent.
He joined the service out of a sense of vocation, he
says. "We were all young and idealistic. They paid us
less than they paid .a postman, but nobody gave any
thought to that. We were going to dedicate our lives
to the service of our less fortunate fellow men. If
anyone happened to live in Rio de Janeiro the
Minister himself would see him when he was posted,
and shake hands with him and wish him good luck. I
happened to be a country boy but my friends hired a
band to see me off to the Station. Everybody insisted
on giving me a present. I had so many lace
handkerchiefs I could have opened a shop. There was
a lot of prestige in being in the service in those days."
There are three whitish, glossy pock-marks in the
slope of each cheek under the sad, Amharic eyes, and
it is difficult not to watch them. He shakes his head.
"No one would believe the conditions some of us
lived under. They used to show you photographs of
the kind of place where you'd be working; a house
with a veranda, the school and the dispensary. When I
went to my first post I wept like a child when I saw
it. The journey took a month and in the meanwhile
the man I was supposed to be assisting had died of
the smallpox. I remember the first thing I saw was a
dead Indian in the water where they tied up the boat.
I'd hit a measles epidemic. Half the roof of the house
had caved in. There never had been a school, and
there wasn't a bottle of aspirin in the place. When the
sun went down the mosquitoes were so thick, they
were on your skin like fur."
He finds a book of press-cuttings in which are
recorded the meager occasions of his life. A picture
shows him in dark suit and stiff collar receiving a
certificate and the congratulations of a politician for
his work as a civilizer. In another he is shown posing
at the side of Miss Pernambuco 1952, and in another
he is a paternal presence at a ceremony when a newly
pacified tribe are to put on their first clothing. There

are "before" and "after" pictures of the tribal
women, first naked and then in jumpers and skirts,
not only changed but facially unrecognizable from
one minute to the next, as if some malignant spell
had been laid upon them as they wriggled into the
shapeless garments. The few cuttings scanned through
out of politeness speak of Senhor Fulano as the
pattern of self abnegation, and the words servicio and
devocao constantly reappear. "My pay was 100 new
cruzeiros a month," he says, "and it was sometimes
up to six months overdue. In the first year only, I had
measles, jaundice and malaria three times. If it hadn't
been for the fazendeiro I'd have died. He looked after
me like a father. He was a man of the greatest
possible principles, and among many other
benefactions he gave 100,000 cruzeiros to a church in
Salvador. I see now that his son's been formally
charged with invading Indian lands. All I can say to
that is, what the Indians would do without him, I
don't know."
Fulano is nothing if not loyal. "Fazendeiros are no
different from anyone else," he says. "They try to
make out they're monsters these days. You mustn't
believe all you read."
It was certain that no one would be found now in
this town to contradict him.
For a half-century rubber had been the great
destroyer of the Indian, and then suddenly it changed
to speculation in land. Rumor spread of huge mineral
resources awaiting exploitation in the million square
miles that were inaccessible until recently and the
great speculative rush was on. Nowhere, however
remote, however sketchily mapped, was secure from
the surveyors sent by the fazendeiros, the politicians
and the real-estate companies to measure out their
claims. Back in Sao Paulo, the headquarters of the
land boom, the grileiro specialist in shady land
deals went into secret partnerships with his friend
in the Government, who was in a position to see that
the deals went through. A great deal of this
apparently empty land was only empty to the extent
that it contained no white settlements, and the
mapmakers had not yet put in the rivers and the
mountains. There might well be Indians there -
nobody knew until it had been explored but this
possibility introduced only a slight inconvenience. In
theory the undisturbed possession of all land
occupied by Indians is guaranteed to them by the
Brazilian constitution, but if it can be shown that
Indian land has been abandoned it reverts to the
Government after which it can be sold in the ordinary
way. The grileiro's task is to discover or manufacture
evidence that such land is no longer in occupation a
problem, if sincerely confronted, complicated by the
fact that most Indians are semi-nomadic, cultivating
crops in one area during the period of the summer
rains, then moving elsewhere to hunt and fish during
the dry winter season.
A short cut to the solution of the problem is
simply to drive the Indians out. Other grileiros quite
simply ignore its existence, offering land to the
gullible by map reference, sight unseen, and hoping to
be able to settle the legal difficulties by political
manipulations at some later date.
The grileiro with his maneuverings behind the

scenes was kept under some control while President
Joao Goulart was in power, and it finally became
clear to the big-scale land speculators that they were
going to get nowhere until they got a new President.
Goulart, although a rich landowner himself, held the
opinion that Brazil would never occupy the place in
the Western Hemisphere to which its colossal size and
resources entitled it while it limped along in its
feudalistic way with an 86 percent illiteracy figure
and the land in the hands of an infinitesimally small
minority, many of which made no effort to develop it
in any way. The remedy he proposed was to
redistribute 3 percent of privately-owned land, but
also what was far more serious he announced the
resuscitation of an old law permitting the
Government to nationalize land up to six miles in
depth on each side of the national means of
communication roads, railways and canals.
This would have been a death blow to the
speculators, who hoped to resell their land at many
ties the price they had paid, as soon as it was made
accessible by the building of roads. One such firm had
advertised 100,000 acres of land for sale in the
English Press. The land was offered in 100-acre
minimum lots at 5 an acre. An initial purchase of
land had already been sold, the company announced,
"mainly to investment houses and trusts, insurance
companies and a number of syndicates." A charter
flight would be arranged for buyers from Manchester,
Birmingham, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Liverpool, and
representatives of Kenya farmers who had already
bought 50,000 acres. "There is little hope," said the
promotion literature, "of any return from the
purchase of the land for a few years yet."
But in 1964 the speculative prospects brightened
enormously when a coup d'etat was staged to depose
the troublesome Goulart, and the land rush could go
ahead. A promotional assault was'launched on the
US. market with lavishly produced and cunning-
ly-worded brochures offering glamor as well as profit,
and phrased in the poetic style of American car
advertisements. Amazon Adventure Estates were
offered, and there were allusions to monkeys and
macaws and the occult glitter of gems in the banks of
mighty rivers sailed by the ships of Orellana. They
had some success. A number of film stars took a
gamble in the Mato Grosso. In April, 1968, in fact, a
Brazilian deputy, Haroldo Veroso, revealed that most
of the area of the mouth of the Amazon had passed
into the hands of foreigners. He mentioned that
Prince Rainier of Monaco had bought land in the
Mato Grosso 12 times larger than the principality,
whereas someone, stabbing presumably with a pencil
point at a mpa, had picked up the highest mountain
in Brazil the Pico de Nieblina for an old song,
although it would have taken a properly equipped
expedition a matter of weeks to reach it.
This was Doomsday for the tribes who had been
pacified and settled in areas where they could be
conveniently dealt with. Down in the plain on the
frontiers with Paraguay it was the end of the road for
the Kadiweus. In 1865 in the war against Paraguay
they had taken their spears and ridden naked,
barebacked, but impeccably painted a fantastic
Charge of the Light Brigade, at the head of the
Brazilian army to rout the cavalry of the

psychopathic Paraguayan dictator Solano Lopez. For
their aid in the war the Emperor Pedro II had
received their principal chief, clad for the occasion in
a Loincloth sewn with precious stones, and granted
the Kadiweu nation in perpetuity two million acres of
the borderland. Here these Spartans of the West -
poets and artists who practiced infanticide, adopting
the children of other tribes when they were old
enough to ride horses were reduced now to 200
survivors, working as the cowhands of fazendeiros
who had taken all their lands.
It was Doomsday too for Levi-Strauss's Bororos.
The great anthropologist had lived for several years
among them in the 1930s, and they had led him to
the conclusions of "structural anthropology,"
including the proposition that "a primitive people is
not a backward or retarded people, indeed it may
possess a genius for invention or action that leaves the
achievements of civilized people far behind." He had
said of the Bororos, "few people are so profoundly
religious few possess a metaphysical system of
such complexity. Their spiritual beliefs and everyday
activities are inextricably mixed." They had been
living for some years now far from the complicated
villages where Levi-Strauss studied them, in the
Teresa Cristina reserve in the South Mato Grosso,
given them "in perpetuity," as ever, in tribute to the
memory of the great Marshall Rondon, who had been
part-Bororo himself.
Life in the reserve was far from happy for the
Bororos. They were hunters, and fishermen, and in
their way excellent agriculturists, but the reserve was
small, and there was no game left and the rivers in the
area had been illegally fished-out by commercial firms
operating on a big scale, and there was no room to
practice cultivation in the old-fashioned semi-
nomadic way. The Government had tried to turn
them into cattle-raisers, but they knew nothing of
cattle. Many of their cows were quietly sold off by
agents of the Indian Production Service, who
pocketed the money. Others as the Bororos had no
idea of building corrals wandered out of the
reservation, and were impounded by neighboring
fazendeiros. The Indians ate the few that remained
before they could die of disease or starvation, after
which they were reduced to the normal diet of hard
times lizards, locusts and snakes plus an
occasional handout of food from one of the missions.
They suffered, too, from the great emptiness and
aimlessness of the Indian whose traditional culture
has been destroyed. The missionaries, upon whom
they were wretchedly dependent, forbade dancing,
singing, or smoking, and while they accepted with
inbred stoicism this attack on the principle of
pleasure, there was a fourth prohibition against which
they continually rebelled, but in vain.
The Indians are obsessed by their relationship with
the dead, and by the condition of the souls of the
dead in the after-life a concern reflected in the
manner of the ancient Egyptians by the most
elaborate funerary rites orgies of grief and
intoxication, sometimes lasting for days. The
Bororos, seemingly unable to part with their dead,
bury them twice, and the custom is at the emotional
basis of their lives. In the first instance as if in hope
of some miraculous revival the body is placed in a

temporary grave, in the center of the village, and
covered with branches. When decomposition is
advanced, the flesh is removed from the bones, which
are painted and lovingly adorned with feathers, after
which final burial takes place in the depths of the
forest. The outlawing of this custom by an American
missionary reduced the Bororos to despair, but the
missionary was able to persuade the local police to
enforce the ban, and the party of half-starved
tribesmen who dragged themselves 200 miles on foot
to the State capital and presented themselves,
weeping, to the comissario, were turned away.
Final catastrophe followed the devolution by the
Federal Government of certain of its powers -
particularly those relating to the ownership and sale
of land to the Legislative Assembly of the Mato
Grosso State. This at once invoked a law by which
land that, after a certain time limit, had not been
legally measured and demarcated reverted to the
Government, to take over the Teresa Cristina reserve.
It was a legal device which saddled Indians, many of
whom did not even realize that they were living in
Brazil, with the responsibility of employing lawyers
to look after their interests. It had been employed
once before, and with additional refinements of
trickery, in an attempt to snatch away the last of the
land of the unfortunate Kadiweus. On this occasion it
seems that only two copies of the official publication
recording the enactment were available, one of which
had been lodged in the State archives, and the other
taken the same day to the reserve by the persons
proposing to share the land between them.
Hardly less haste was shown in the occupation of
the Teresa Cristina reserve. It was a muddled, untidy
operation, and it turned out in the end that
considerably more land had been sold on paper than
the actual area of the reserve. This was before the
final demoralization and collapse of the Indian
Protection Service, and local officials not only
challenged the legality of the sale but called in vain
for State troops to be sent to repel an invasion of
fazendeiros supported by their private armies carrying
sub-machine guns.
The state of affairs that had come to pass at Teresa
Cristina only five years later, in 1968, is depicted in
the testimony of a Bororo Indian girl. "There were
two fazendas, one called Teresa, where the Indians
worked as slaves. They took me from my mother
when I was a child. Afterwards I heard that they hung
my mother up all night.... She was very ill and I
wanted to see her before she died.... When I got
back they thrashed me with a raw-hide whip....
They prostituted the Indian girls ... One day the SPI
agent called an old carpenter and told him to make an
oven for the farmhouse. When the carpenter had
finished the agent asked him what he wanted for
doing the job. The carpenter said he wanted an Indian
girl, and the agent took him to the school and told
him to choose one. No one saw or heard any more of
her.... Not even the children escaped. From two
years of age they worked under the whip. ... There
was a mill for crushing the cane, and to save the
horses they used four children to turn the mill ....
They forced the Indian Otaviano to beat his own
mother .... The Indians were used for target

Thus were the Indians disarmed, betrayed, and
hustled down the path towards final extinction. Yet
in the heart of the Mato Grosso and the Amazon
forests there were tribes that still held out. Classified
by the Government manual on Indians as isolados,
they are described as those that possess the greatest
physical vigor. Nobody knows how many such tribes
there are. There may be 300 or more with a total
population of 50,000, including tiny, selfcontained
and apparently indestructible nations having their
own completely separate language, organization and
customs. Some of these people are giants with
herculean limbs, armed with immense longbows of
the kind an archer at Crecy might have used. A few
groups are ethnically mysterious with blue eyes and
fair hair, provokers of wild theories among
Amazonian travelers, and there is one tribe supposed
by some to have migrated to these forests some 2000
years ago from the island of Hokkaido in Japan. One
common factor unites them all, a brilliant fitness for
survival until now. For 400 years they have avoided
epidemics. They have armed themselves with constant
alertness. They have been ready to embrace a new
tactical nomadism. They have made distrust the
greatest of their virtues. Above all their chieftains
have had the intelligence and the strength to reject
those deadly offerings left outside their villages by
which the whites seek first to buy their friendship,
then take away their freedom.

The Cintas Largas were one such tribe living in
magnificent if precarious isolation in the upper
reaches of the Aripuana River. There were about 400
of them, occupying several villages.
They used stone axes, tipped their arrows with
curare, caught small fish by poisoning the water,
played four-feet long flutes made from gigantic
bamboos, and celebrated two great annual feasts; one
of the initiation of young girls at puberty, and the
other of the dead. At both of these they were said to
use some unknown herbal concoction to produce
ritual drunkenness. They were in a region still
dependent for its meager revenues on wild rubber,
and this exposed them to routine attacks by rubber
tappers, against whom they had learned to defend
themselves. Their tragedy was that deposits of rare
metals were being found in the area. What these
metals were, it was not clear. Some sort of a security
blackout has been imposed, only fitfully penetrated
by vague news reports of the activities of American
and European companies, and of the smuggling of
plane-loads of the said rare metals back to the USA.
David St. Clair in his book, The Mighty Mighty
Amazon (Souvenir Press, 1968), mentions the
existence of companies who specialized in dealing
with tribes when their presence came to be
considered a nuisance, attacking their villages with
famished dogs, and shooting down everyone who
tried to escape. Such expeditions depended for their
success on the assistance of a navigable river which
would carry the attacking party to within striking
distance of the village or villages to be destroyed. The
Beicos de Pau had been reached in this way and
dealt with by the gifts of foodstuffs mixed with
poisons, but the two inches on the small-scale map of
Brazil separating these two neighboring tribes

contained unexplored mountain ranges, and the single
river ran in the wrong direction. The Cintas Largas,
then, remained for the time being out of reach. In
1962, a missionary, John Dornstander, had reached
and made an attempt to pacify them but he had given
them up as a bad job. The plans for disposing of the
Cintas Largas were laid in Aripuana. This small,
festering tropical version of Dodge City 1860 has the
face and physique of all such Latin-American
hell-holes, populated by hopeless men who remain
there simply because for one reason or other, they
cannot leave. A row of wooden huts on stilts click in
the hard sunshine down by the river. Swollen-bellied
children squat to delouse each other; dogs eat
excrement; vultures limp and balance on the edge of a
ditch full of black sewage; the driver of an ox-cart
urges on the animal wreckage of hide and bones
between the shafts by jabbing with a stick under its
tail. Everyone carries a gun. Cachaca offers oblivion
at a shilling a pint, but boredom rots the mind. There
are two classes, those who impose suffering, the the
utterly servile. In this case nine-tenths of the working
population are rubber tappers, and most of them
fugitives from justice.
It is cheap and sometimes effective, besides being
the quite normal procedure where a tribe's villages are
beyond reach, to bribe other Indians to attack them,
and this was tried in the first instance with the Cintas
Largas. The Kayabis, neighbors both of the Cintas
Largas and the Beicos de Pau, had been dispersed
when the State of Mato Grosso sold their land to
various commercial enterprises, part of the tribe
migrating to a distant range of mountains, while a
small group that had split off remained in the
Aripuana area, where it lived in destitution. This
group took the food and guns that they were offered
in down-payment, and then decamped in the opposite
direction and no more was seen of them.
Later a garimpa an organized body of diamond
prospectors appeared in the neighborhood. They
were all in very bad shape through malnutritional
disorders. They had attacked an Indian village and
had been beaten off and then ambushed, and several
of them were wounded. The intention had been to
capture at least one woman, not only for sexual uses,
but as a source of supply of the fresh female urine
believed to be a certain cure for the infected sores
from which garimpeiros habitually suffer, and which
are caused by the stingrays abounding in the rivers in
which they work. Garimpeiros are organized under a
captain who supplies their food and equipment, and
to whom they are bound under pain of being
abandoned in the forest to die of starvation to sell
their diamonds. Like the rubber tappers who are
their traditional enemies they are mostly wanted
by the police. The feud existing-between these two
types of desperado is based on the rubber tappers'
habit of stalking and shooting the lonely garimpeiro,
in the hope that he may be found with a diamond or
two. In this case emissaries arranged a truce, and the
garimpeiros were brought into town, given food, and
a company doctor patched up the wounded men.
Common action against the Cintas Largas was then
proposed, and the captain fell in with the suggestion
and agreed to detach six men for this purpose as soon
as everyone was fully rested. In the condition in

which he found himself, he may have been ready to
agree to anything, but by the time the garimpeiros
had put on a little flesh and their wounds had cleared
up, there was an abrupt cooling in the climate of
amity. Aripuana was not a big enough town to
contain two such trigger-happy personalities as the
garimpa captain and the overseer of the rubber
tappers. For a while the poverty-stricken rubber
tappers put up with it while the affluent garimpeiros
swaggered in the bars, and monopolized the town's
prostitutes. The, inevitably, the entente cordial
foundered in gunplay.
A series of expeditions were now organized under
the leadership of Francisco de Brito, general overseer
of the rubber extraction firm of Arruda and
Junqueira of Juina-Mirim near Aripuana, on the river
Juruana. De Brito was a legendary monster who kept
order among the ruffians he commanded by a .45
automatic and a five-foot tapir-hide whip. He was a
joker with Indians, and when one was captured he
was taken on what was known as "the visit to the
dentist," being ordered to "open wide" whereupon
De Brito drew a pistol and shot him through his
mouth. There was a lively competition among the
rubber men for the title of champion Indian killer,
and although this was claimed by De Brito, local
opinion was that his score was bettered by one of his
underlings who specialized in casual sniping from the
river banks.
The expeditions mounted by De Brito were
successful in clearing the Cintas Largas from an area,
insignificant by Brazilian standards, although about
half as big as England south of the Thames, but there
remained a large village considered inaccessible on
foot or by canoe, and it was decided to attack this by
plane. At this stage it is evident that a better type of
brain began to interest itself in these operations, and
whoever planned the air-attack was clearly at some
pains to find out all he could about the customs of
the Cintas Largas.
It was seen as essential to produce the maximum
number of casualties in one single, devastating attack,
at a time when as many Indians as possible would be
present, in the village, and an expert was found to
advise that this could best be done at the annual feast
of the Quarup. This great ceremony lasts for a day
and a night, and under one name or another it is
conducted by almost all the Indian tribes whose
culture has not been destroyed. The Quarup is a
theatrical representation of the legends of creation
interwoven /with those of the tribe itself, both a
mystery play and a family reunion attended not only
by the living but the ancestral spirits. These appear as
dancers in masquerade, to be consulted on immediate
problems to comfort the mourners, to testify that not
even death can disrupt the unity of the tribe.
A Cessna light plane used for ordinary commercial
services was hired for the attack, and its normal pilot
replaced by an adventurer of mixed Italian-Japanese
birth. It was loaded with sticks of dynamite -
"banasa" they are called in Brazil and took off
from a jungle airstrip near Aripuana. The Cessna
arrived over the village at about midday. The Indians
had been preparing themselves all night by prayer and
singing, and now they were all gathered in the open
space in the village's center. On the first run packets

-' I

,, d


of sugar were dropped to calm the fears of those who
had scattered and run for shelter at the sight of the
plane. They had opened the packets and were tasting
the sugar ten minutes later when it returned to carry
out the attack. No one has ever been able to find out
how many Indians were killed, because the bodies
were buried in the bank of the river and the village
But even this solution proved not to be final.
Survivors had been spotted from the air and were
reported to be building fresh settlements in the upper
reaches of the Aripuani, and once again De Brito got
together an overland force.
They were to be led, in canoes, by one Chico, a De
Brito underling. The full story of what happened was
described by a member of the force, Ataide Pereira,
who, troubled by his conscience and also by the fact
that he had never been paid the 15 dollars promised
him for his bloody deed, went to confess them to a
Padre Edgar Smith, a Jesuit priest, who took his
statement on a tape recorder and then handed the
tape to the Indian Protection Service.
"We went by launch up the Juruana," Ataide says.
"There were six of us, men of experience,
commanded by Chico, who used to shove his
tommy-gun in your direction whenever he gave you
an order!" (Chico, it was to turn out, was no mere
average sadist of the Brazilian badlands, but one of
those terrifying human beings for whom cruelty is
sex. For this kind of Latin American and they have
been the executioners in so many revolutions the
ultimate excitement lies in the maniac use of the
machete on their victims, and it was to use his
machete that Chico had gone on this expedition.) "It
took a good many days upstream to the Serra do
Norte. After that we lost ourselves in the woods,
although Chico had brought a Japanese compass with
us. In the end the plane found us. It was the same
plane they used to massacre the Indians, and they
threw us down some provisions and ammunition.
After that we went on for five days. Then we ran out
of food again. We came across an Indian village that
had been wiped out by a gang led by a gunman called
Tenente, and we dug up some of the Indians'
mandioca for food and caught a few small fish. By
this time we were fed up and some of us wanted to go
back but Chico said he'd kill anybody who tried to
desert. It was another five days after that before we
saw any smoke. Even then the Cintas Largas were
days away. We were all pretty scared of each other. In
this kind of place people shoot each other and get
shot, you might say without knowing why. When
they drill a hole in you, they have this habit of
sticking an Indian arrow in the wound, to put the
blame on the Indians."
This expedition breathed in the air of fear. Ataide
reports that there were diamonds and gold in all the
rivers, and the shadow of the garimhpeiro stalked them
from behind every rock and tree. A violent death
would claim most of these men sooner or later.
Premature middle-age brought on by endless fever,
malnutrition, exhaustion, hopelessness and drink
overtook the rubber-tappers in their late twenties,
and few lived to see their thirtieth birthday. An
infection turning to gangrene or bloodpoisoning
would carry them off, or they would die in an ugly

fashion, paralyzed, blind and mad from some obscure
tropical disease, or they would simply kill each other
in a sudden neurotic outburst of hate provoked by
nothing in particular, for a bet, or in a brawl over
some sickly prostitute picked up at a village dance.
Hacking their way through this sunless forest a
month or more's march from the dreadful barracks
that was their home, they were dependent for survival
on the psychopathic Chico and his Japanese compass.
It was the beginning of the rainy season when, after a
morning of choking heat, sudden storms would
drench them every afternoon. They were plagued
with freshly hatched insects, worst of all the myriads
of almost invisible piums that burrow into the skin to
gorge themselves with blood, and against which the
only defense is a coating of grime on every exposed
part of the body. Some of the men were blistered
from the burning sap squirted on them from the
lianas they cut into.
"We were hand picked for the job," Ataide says,
with a lackluster attempt at esprit de corps, "as quiet
as any Indian party when it came to slipping in and
out of tree. When we got to Cintas Largas country
there were no more fires and no talking. As soon as
we spotted their village we made a stop for the night.
We got up before dawn, then we dragged ourselves
yard by yard through the underbrush till we were in
range, and after that we waited for the sun to come
"As soon as it was light the Indians all came out
and started to work on some huts they were building.
Chico had given me the job of seeking out the chief
and killing him. I noticed there was one of these
Indians who wasn't doing any work. All he did was to
lean on a rock and boss the others about, and this
gave me the idea he must be the man we were after. I
told Chico and he said, 'Take care of him, and leave
the rest to me,' and I got him in the chest with the
first shot. I was supposed to be the marksman of the
team, and although I only have an ancient carbine, I
can safely say I never miss. Chico gave the chief a
burst with his tommy gun to make sure, and after
that he let the rest of them have it. All the other
fellows had to do was to finish off anyone who
showed signs of life.
"What I'm coming to now is brutal, and I was all
against it. There was a young Indian girl they didn't
shoot, with a kid of about five in one hand, yelling
his head off. Chico started after her and I told him to
hold it, and he said, 'All these bastards have to be
knocked off.' I said, 'Look, you can't do that what
are the padres going to say about it when you get
back?' He just wouldn't listen. He shot the kid
through the head with his .45, and then he grabbed
hold of the woman who by the way was very
pretty. 'Be reasonable,' I said. 'Why do you have to
kill her?' In my view, apart from anything else, it was
a waste. 'What's wrong with giving her to the boys?' I
said. 'They haven't set eyes on a woman for six
weeks. Or failing that we could take her back with us
and make a present of her to De Brito. There's no
harm in keeping in with him.' All he said was, 'If any
man wants a woman he can go and look for her in the
"We all thought he'd gone off his head, and we
were pretty scared of him. He tied the Indian girl up

and hung her head downwards from a tree, legs apart,
and chopped her in half right down the middle with
his machete. Almost with a single stroke I'd say. The
village was like a slaughterhouse. He calmed down
after he'd cut the woman up, and told us to burn
down all the huts, and throw the bodies into the
river. After that we grabbed our things and started
back. We kept going until nightfall and we took care
to cover our tracks. If the Indians had found us it
wouldn't have been much use trying to kid them we
were just ordinary backwoodsmen. It took us six
weeks to find the Cintas Largas, and about a week to
get back. I want to say now that personally I've
nothing against Indians. Chico found some minerals
and took them back to keep the company pleased.
The fact is the Indians are sitting on valuable land and
doing nothing with it. They've got a way of finding
the best plantation land and there's all these valuable
minerals about too. They have to be persuaded to go,
and if all else fails, well then, it has to be force."
De Brito, the man who organized this expedition,
was to die within a year of it in the most horrific
circumstances. When he found cause for complaint in
one of his men he would normally tie him up and
thrash him until the blood ran down and squelched in
the man's boots, but in an aggravated case he would
have one of his henchmen use the whip while he
raped the culprit's wife as the punishment was being
inflicted. An Italian called Cavalcanti, who tried to
attack the overseer after receiving the more serious
punishment, was promptly shot dead and his body
burned. A revolt of the rubber tappers followed in
which nine men were killed. De Brito when cornered
was, like Rasputin, very difficult to disable, and
absorbed several bullets and a thrust in the stomach
with a machete before he went down. After this he
was stripped, the bowels plugged back with a tampon
of straw, then dragged still alive into the open and
left for the ants.

How many Indian hunts of the kind mounted
against the Cintas Largas must have gone unnoticed in
the past, condemned at worst as a necessary evil?
Ataide speaks of them as if they were commonplace,
and the likelihood is confirmed by a statement, made
to the police inspector of the 3rd Divisional Area of
Cuiabi Salgado who investigated the case, by a Padre
Valdemar Veber. The Padre said, "It is not the first
time that the firm of Arruda and Junqueira has
committed crimes against the Indians. A number of
expeditions have been organized in the past. This firm
acts as a cover for other undertakings who are
interested in acquiring land, or who plan to exploit
the rich mineral deposits existing in this area."
When one considers the miasmic climate of
subjection in which these remote rubber-baronies
operate, in which the voice raised in protest can be
instantly suffocated, and as many false witnesses as
required created at the lifting of a finger, it seems
extraordinary that police action could ever have been
contemplated against Arruda and Junqueira. It
appears even more so when one surveys the sparse
judicial resources of the area.
Denunciations of the kind made by Ataide lie
forgotten in police files by the hundred, simply
because the police have learned not to waste their

strength in attempting the impossible. Nine major
crimes out of ten probably never come to light. The
problem of the disposal of the body so powerful a
deterrent to murder does not exist where it can be
thrown into the nearest stream, where if a cayman
does not dispose of it the piranhas will reduce it to
a clean skeleton in a matter of minutes.
In the case of the brazen and contemptuous tenth,
where a man murders his victim in public view, and
makes not the slightest attempt to hide the crime, he
knows he is under the powerful protection of
distance and inaccessibility. Aripuani is 600 miles
from Cuinba, the capital and seat of justice of Mato
Grosso, and it can be reached only by irregular
planes. Moreover at the time Inspector Salgado began
his investigation, about 1000 criminal cases were
awaiting trial in Cuiabi, where, since the tiny local
lock-up can accommodate some 50 persons (all ages
and sexes are kept together), most criminals manage
to remain at liberty awaiting their trial, which may be
long delayed.
Salgado's task was immediately complicated by
factors unrelated to the normal frustrations of
geography and communications. Ataide, principal
witness and self-confessed murdered, was now the
owner of a sweet stall on the streets of Cuiabi, and
could be picked up at any time, but other essential
witnesses were beginning to disappear. Two of the
members of Chico's expedition had managed to
drown themselves "while on fishing trips." The pilot
of the plane used in the attack on the Cintas Largas
was reported to have been killed in a plane crash. De
Brito had of course been murdered in the rubber
tappers' revolt and even Padre Smith, who had taped
Ataide's confession, could not be found.
Despite the series of contretemps Salgado
completed the police's case against Antonio
Junqueira and Sebastiao Arruda exactly three years
after his investigations had begun, and the documents
were sent to the judge. Under Brazilian law, however,
the next procedure is the formal charge, the
denuncia, which must be made by the public
prosecutor, and it now became evident that the case
might never surmount this hurdle. In all such
countries as Brazil where a middle class is only just
emerging, the landed aristocracy and the heads of
great commercial firms are almost impregnably
protected from the consequences of misdemeanor by
dynastic marriages, interlocking interests and the
mutual security pacts of men with powerful political
friends. This is by no means an exclusively Latin
American phenomenon, even, and is equally prevalent
in Mediterranean Europe.
In this case the public prosecutor,.Sr. Luis Vidal
da Fonseca, promptly objected that the case could
not be tried in Cuaiba because Aripuani came under
the jurisdiction, he said, of Diamantino. The papers
were therefore sent to Diamantino where the judge
immediately sent them back to Cuiaba. The question
being referred to the supreme judiciary, it was ruled
that the trial should take place in Cuiabi. So far only
a month had been lost.
Fonseca now claimed exemption from officiating
on the grounds that he was lawyer to the firm of
Arruda and Junqueira. A second public prosecutor
refused to be saddled with the embarrassing

obligation, and the judge of the Cuiaba assize agreed
with him and turned down Fonseca's application.
Fonseca then applied to the supreme court again for
an annulment of the local decision. The application
was refused. By now nine months had been used up
in maneuvers of this kind, and it was April 1967.
At this point an attempt was made to settle these
difficulties, to the satisfaction of all concerned, by
the appointment of a substitute public prosecutor -
who immediately claimed exemption on the grounds
of his wife's somewhat remote relationship with
Sebastiio Arruda. The plea was accepted and another
public prosecutor found, who declined to officiate,
basing his refusal on the legal invalidity of Fonseca's
objection. All papers were therefore returned to
Fonseca. In September 1967 a fourth substitute
public prosecutor was appointed who, instead of
taking action, sent the papers to the Attorney
General who confirmed the original decision that
Fonseca, who had moved away, was competent to
act. This was followed by an endless bandying of legal
quibbles and the appearance and departure of a
succession of substitute prosecutors until March 1968
when the Attorney General was goaded to a protest:
"Since August 1966 the papers relating to this case
have been shuffled about in an endless game of
farcical excuses and pretexts, to the grave detriment
of the prestige of justice." Thus encouraged, the
eighth or ninth substitute public prosecutor took
action, and made a formal charge against the
murderers of the Cintas Largas nearly all of whom
were by now, after five years, either dead or not to be
found. The names of Antonio Junqueira and Sebastia
Arruda were omitted from the denuncia "as their
assent to the massacre of the Indians has never been
established." At this, the police attempted to take the
law into their own hands by ordering the two men's
preventive arrest. This could not be carried out,
because they had gone into hiding.
What is to be done?
Of the present excellent intentions of the Brazilian
Government there can be no doubt. The investi-
gations began in 1967 are still going on and it is
expected that many persons will be brought to trial in
a few week's time. In the meanwhile the Ministry of
the Interior issues what is intended to be reassuring
"There must be a serious re-examination of the
agreement between the Ministry of Agriculture
and the State of Mato Grosso affecting the 35,000
hectares of the Teresa Cristina Reserve.
"Action will have to be taken against powerful
groups who obtained de facto possession through
"These serious problems can only be resolved
by legal action for the recuperation of lands in
Parana, Pernambuco, Paraiba and Bahia ... a very
difficult task.
"Strict investigations are called for in the
matter of Indian lands in Rondonia, and a special
vigilance in areas rich in strategic metals."

One reads the history of the four years' legal battle
against the firm of Arruda and Junqueira, and the
imagination reels at the thought of what lies in store

for the champions of justice for the Indians the
practiced and methodical wasting of time, the pleas
for exemption, the demands for re-trials, the appeals
and the counterappeals, while the months run into
years, and the years into decades, and the Indian
slowly vanishes from the earth.
And when, if ever, after all the lawsuits are settled,
a little land is wrested back from the great banks, the
corporations, the fazendeiros, the timber and mining
concessionaires that now hold it still .what is to be
done? Can the mission hanger-on, miraculously
refurbished in body and spirit, return once again to
the free life of the isolado? Does any remedy exist for
the Indian, who, when the great day comes for the
repossession of his land, finds the forest gone, and in
its place a ruined plain, choked with -scrub? Can a
happy, viable, self-sufficient people be reassembled
from those few broken human parts? The new
protective body, the National Foundation for the
Indian, finds some cause for hope in Xingu National
Park. This is the magnificent and almost
single-handed creation of two dedicated Indian
fundamentalists, the Vilas Boas brothers, who believe
that it will remain for all eternity an unchanging
redoubt of the old Indian way of life a view it is
hard to discover anyone who shares. It was founded a
generation ago when the ranches and fazendas were
still busily digesting frontier territories hundreds of
miles away, but their appetites have sharpened again.
The park shelters perhaps a dozen tribes, and there
they live cheerfully obsessed with their Stone Age
rituals, absorbed in perfectionist handicrafts,
body-painting, keeping precious fires alight. The Vilas
Boas brothers believe that even aspirin is detrimental
to the Indian's self-sufficiency, they exclude
missionaries, and do not particularly welcome visitors
of any kind. There are dotted lines on the map of the
park in the Foundation's office, showing the
extensions they propose to make, which will allegedly
double its present area; and, remembering the fate of
President Goulart when idealism and commercial
interests were in collision, one can only wonder.
At best, and should this growth in the park's area
ever take place, a total of 4000 isolados will have
been salvaged, plus a few hundred in a new reserve
just created in the Tumucumac mountains in the far
north, and these will be guarded like rare birds of
prey in the Highlands of Scotland. The future of the
50,000 or 100,000 Indians whatever the figure is -
left outside these reserves seems obscure indeed. At
the moment they are to some slight extent protected
by a national mood of self-recrimination, which is
almost certain to calm once again to indifference.
There are only 100,000 pure Indians at most out of a
total population of 80 millions, and it is unrealistic to
believe that their welfare can ever become an
obsession in a country in which such multitudes are
thrown together in the pit of destitution. It is more
unrealistic still .to imagine that whenever "strategic"
metals are found some means will not be devised to
exploit them, whether or not they happen to be in an
Indian reserve.
It seems almost too bold to consider the unique
case of the Maxacalis as a possible compromise
solution between an imperilled isolation and the
ethnic suicide of integration, yet there is no other

possible hope. The Maxacalis mysterious in their
origins, like so many Brazilian tribes live in three
villages in the State of Belo Horizonte. They speak a
strange, gutteral language, carve totem poles similar
to those of the Indians of Canada, and among other
unusual customs noted by anthropologists who have
studied them is their method of dealing with rare
cases of murder. When this happens the assailant
becomes the guest of honor of a ceremony before his
funeral, after which he is killed and buried in the
same grave as his victim, "so that they may become
reconciled." Like all other Indians the Maxacalis are
protected in theory by a paternal constitution that
leaves them in possession of their ancestral lands, but
like all other Indians the exact extension of their
lands had never been defined, and there are no title
deeds. In the meanwhile, and as the years go by, the
surrounding fazendas slowly clear the forest and
move their boundaries closer. Years ago the Maxacalis
found they could no longer live as hunters and
fishermen, and as a stopgap measure the Government
gave them some cattle. These were stolen by the
Indian Protection Service officials in charge of them,
who at the same time helped themselves to what was
left of the Indian land, and set themselves up as
ranchers. By 1966 there was no land, no game, no
fish and no cattle. The Maxacalis then took up arms
and attacked fazenda after fazenda, slaughtered the
animals, set fire to the buildings.
It was a lucky chance indeed for them that these
attacks were carried out not against big fazendeiros of
the kind who could have called in planes or used
bacteriological warfare to destroy them. Instead, their
opponents were smallholders of limited imagination
and resources, who fell back on the traditional
method of distributing fire-water in the Maxacali
villages. The effect of this on starving stomachs was
explosive. A civil war started within the tribe causing
10-12 deaths a week, and when hunger drove the
survivors in the direction of the white fazendas again,
they found that professional killers hired in Belo
Horizonte were awaiting them. It was the story all
over again of some desperate last-ditch encounter in
the middle of the last century between a handful of
Redskin and American pioneers, but now while one
was still armed with bows and arrows, the other had
changed its .45 colts for sub-machine guns.
Early in 1967 Captain Manuel Pinheiro of the
Military Police was sent out from the State capital to
take charge of a situation that now that one or two
of the Indians had got hold of firearms was
beginning to look as though a small, spontaneous
guerrilla war might develop. The measures taken were
prompt, arbitrary and effective. The captain first
took back 7000 acres from the fazendeiros and
charged rent for the rest of the Indian land they
occupied. With the money he built three small
irrigation dams, and bought up-to-date agricultural
equipment. (The illicit herds owned by the SPI agents
were sequestered and every Indian family got at least
one cow.) Pinheiro says that the fazendeiros were
quite happy to accept the need for the measure when
it was explained to them. The sale of fire-water was
punished from this time on by 15 days forced labor
in the police post, and the captain claims that this,
too, was taken in the right spirit. Within six months

the tribe was not only self-supporting, but producing
a surplus of milk and cheese, as well as some excellent
The policy here while the Military Police remains
in control is one of absolute non-interference in tribal
customs and beliefs a kind of benevolent apartheid
in reverse with the white man held warily at arm's
length. The Maxacalis have been given an economic
personality that carries with it comprehension and
respect. They buy, sell and exchange. Their
cooperative has opened a banking account, taken out
insurance policies, even undertaken hire-purchase
commitments. Their involvement with the hallowed
myths and taboos of surrounding white society offers
its own kind of protection. They have been given
another human dimension, stripped of the pernicious
mystery of the forest. Men are to be found in
Maxacali country who will shoot an Indian out of
hand, with the slightest provocation, but a casual
killing of this sort begins to look more like murder
when the victim has business associates and a credit
Six months ago a Maxacali went to Sio Paulo to
take a course for tractor drivers, which includes
dismantling and re-assembling the machine. In a
subsequent competition he received first prize out of
50 entrants. He was regarded not as a civilizado, but a
tribal Indian, and, returning to his village, he would
sleep, as before, in the house of his father-in-law; the
whole family, men, women and children, piled
together, naked, on the communal wooden bed "to
keep out the cold."
If any final and comprehensive plan for the
Indians' salvation is to be evolved, some decision
must be reached about the missionaries. As it is, the
Government's attitude remains ambiguous. On the
one hand a Ministry issues a report that says, without
any attempt to beat about the bush, that "the
confrontation with religious catechism proved
disastrous for the [Indian Protection] Service."
White missionaries have even been charged by the
authorities with such venal activities as trafficking
with the Indians in semi-precious stones and in furs.
They are endlessly attacked, too, in the Press, and
one supposes with Government approval, for the
"conscientious destruction of indigenous culture,
while offering nothing in its place." Yet at the same
time pacification teams are constantly being sent out
to deal with isolated tribes, and' each of these
contains two missionaries who will initiate a process
shown by all the evidence to be deadly in its ultimate
Whatever is decided even, for example, should
Brazil be induced to take the-step of permitting only
medical missionaries to work among the tribes an
uncomfortable fact has to be recognized. This is that
tens of thousands of Indians have now been reduced
to total dependence upon the missions, and the
withdrawal of their economic subsidies would
transform present misery and squalor into outright
starvation. Reforms in this direction would call for
vastly more funds than appear to be available at
As it is, the impression one gets of the National
Foundation for the Indian is that the task it is
tackling with so much evident enthusiasm is beyond

its strength. Its offices in the roaring tropical
Manhattan of Rio de Janeiro are small and cramped,
occupying about a tenth of the floor space of one of
the innumerable bapks that surround it. The feeling is
of something being attempted on a shoestring. The
Foundation has a million dollars a year to spend.
It is nothing.
It is hard to see how the Foundation can be
effective in its battle with the strength, the cunning,
and the influence of the commercial interests it is
bound to confront, and reports so far give no reason
for optimism. After nine months of the new boom
the news from Indian country remains depressing. A
party of university students returning from a field
study at Areibes in Mato Grosso found nothing but
hunger, and exploitation of the Indians by the whites.
The Foundation's inspector of the 7th Region was

alleged to have deserted his post, leaving the Indians
there abandoned. On the very same day that these
other two items appeared in the Press, a deputy
testified to the Congressional Committee for Indian
Affairs that slavers entering Brazil from Surinam were
carrying off Indians of the Tirios tribe who were
supposed to be safe in their new National Park of
Early in the year Professor Darcy Ribeiro, the
leading authority on the Indians of Brazil, published a
gloomy prediction. He calculated that in accordance
with a survey of data collected over the past 50 years,
there would not be a single Indian left alive in Brazil
in 1980.
What a tragedy, what a reproach it will be for the
human race if this is allowed to happen!

"FUNAI's mission is a dual one. First, it pacifies hostile Indians so that
Brazil, an underdeveloped, nation, may extract the riches of its vast
wilderness area as efficiently and painlessly as possible. Second, it protects
the Indians it pacifies against the harmful aspects of our civilization with
which they cannot cope.
As an example, it prosecutes trespassers on lands set aside for Indian use.
It guards its charges against exploitation. It seeks to keep the diseases of
civilization away until the Indians can be immunized; otherwise, measles or
smallpox might sweep the region, taking a fearsome toll."
-W. Jesco von Puttkamer,
"Brazil Protects Her Cintas Largas,"
National Geographic,
September 1971.

"French MD Jean Chiappino informs in a message sent to the 8th Regional
Office of FUNAI in Porto Velho that the state of the Surui (a Cintas Largas
band) Indians, pacified two years ago, is extremely grave and that they are
practically being decimated by TB, infections, and above all, chronic
starvation. Sent to the present director of the Aripuana Indian Park the
message states that from June to the present date more than 20 Indians have
already died in the vicinity of the Seventh of September post. It stresses the
urgency of action by the International Red Cross to help the tribe, besieged
by hunger and diseases since FUNAI allowed private companies to prospect
for mineral resources within the Park."
-"Fome e Doencas Dizimam
Indios Suruis no Parque Aripuana,"
Journal Do Brasil,
November 21, 1972.

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The following is an abridged and edited version of a
much longer translation of Y-Juca-Pirama kindly
provided by the Division for Latin America, United
States Catholic Conference.


On the 25th anniversary of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights, moved by our
conscience and by our mission and by the shock of
reality that surrounds us, we submit to the national
conscience and in particular to all those who share
with us the same hope, this urgent document about
the conditions of Indian peoples in Brazil.


On November 12, 1971, the Bishops of the far
western region of Brazil declared: "Throughout the
entire country the lands belonging to Indians are
being invaded and gradually expropriated. The human
rights of Indian peoples are virtually unrecognized,
leading to their rapid cultural and biological
exterjnination, as has already happened to so many
other Brazilian tribes." (L'osservatore Romano,
January 30, 1972.)
A document signed by 80 scientists in Curitiba
said: "The signers of the present document,
connected to the Indian problem for reasons of
professional activities or from purely humanistic
motives, believe that they must publicly address the
national authorities and the conscience of the
Brazilian people to the threats that are being renewed
against the most fundamental rights of the native
populations of Brazil." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, June
15, 1971.)
Our purposes here are to assess the validity of the
above statements and to verify that the rights of
Indian peoples are not merely being threatened, but
are actually being violated in Brazil. What follows are
a series of reports taken from Brazilian newspapers
and magazines since the construction of the
Trans-Amazonic highway two years ago:
"In response to criticism voiced by the Villas Boas
brothers concerning the construction of the BR-80
highway through the Xingu National Park, General
Bandeira de Melo, President of the National Indian
Foundation (FUNAI), said that the highway would
not create problems for the Indians." (O Estado de
Sao Paulo, n.d.)
This statement contradicts that of others. An
anthropologist, for example, who was an adviser to
the President of FUNAI stated: "Everyone knows
that a road cutting through an Indian Reserve is a

vehicle which will bring enormous problems to the
Indians and consequently to FUNAI." (O Estado de
Sao Paulo, March 31, 1973.)
Orlando Villas Boas, Director of the Xingu
National Park, was quoted as saying, the following
about the BR-80 invasion: "All it has brought to the
region is alcoholism, prostitution, adventurers, and
those who destroy the environment." Jornal Do
Brasil, November 16, 1973.)
Earlier this year, it was reported that: "Three
FUNAI officials at the Alalau (Roraima) substation
were killed in revenge by the Waimiris-Atroaris
Indians who, in June 1972, were humiliated by
forestry workers hired to assist in the construction of
the Manaus-Caracarai Highway." (O Estado de Sao
Paulo, February 2, 1973.)
Professor Eduardo Galvao of the Goeldi Museum
in Belem argues that the same thing could occur in
other areas, and predicts ". .. clashes between Indians
and settlers along the new Northern Perimeter Road."
(0 Estado de Sao Paulo, August 18, 1973.)
A Manaus newspaper reported, in connection with
the situation in Roraima: "The Indian continues to
be a defenseless victim. His lands are invaded, his
reservations are plundered and his women are raped.
The Boa Vista police know it.... FUNAI also knows
it ... only we do not know why the Indians must
continue to be exterminated under the supposed
protection of FUNAI." (A Noticia, January 10, 1971.)
The BR-80 Highway uprooted the Txukarramae
tribe, who were formerly within the confines of the
Xingu National Park. "As a result, other problems
will arise and by the time they are realized, many
Indians will be dead." (O Globo, July 19, 1971.)
Unfortunately, this prediction proved true: "...
four dead, 20 critically ill and 70 hospitalized
following an outbreak of measles affecting the
Txukarramae Indians, in one of the most serious
epidemics of disease ever to strike the Xingu National
Park." (ornal do Brasil, November 15, 1973.)
From the viewpoint of FUNAI such calamities are
justified, because, in the words of the President of the
National Indian Foundation, ". the Xingu Park
cannot hinder the country's progress." (Visao, April
25, 1971.)
The words of General Bandeira de Melo seem less
like those of the President of an agency created to
defend the rights of the Indians, than an echo of the
words of the large landowners of Amazonia. "With
reference to FUNAI guidelines for 1972," Bandeira
de Melo claimed, "I stress again that the Indian
cannot be allowed to impede development." (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, October 26, 1971.)
Yet, the very construction of a road in a native
area is a violation of the rights which Indians possess

to their lands. According to Gonzalo Rubio, Director
of the Inter-American Indian Institute: "Added to
the activities of adventurers and explorers of the past
against the native populations there are now new
factors, the roads and the forces of progress which,
although they do not intend to cause harm,
undeniably disturb the life of the groups through
which they pass." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, August 8,
The threat which these new highways pose is
reflected in the statement of Engineer Claudio Pontes
of the Empresa Industrial e Tecnica, one of the
construction companies for the Northern Perimeter
Road: "At no time will our work be interrupted, even
if there are problems with Indians." (O Estado de Sao
Paulo, August 15, 1973.)
In summary, "The Trans-Amazonic and other
highways under construction in the north of the
country are encircling 80,000 Brazilian Indians,
condemning them to extinction." (O Estado de Sao
Paulo, March 12, 1971.) Similar reports come from
other areas of Brazil.
Moving to the south of the country, we find the
following melancholy testimony of the anthro-
pologist, Carlos de Araujo Moreira Neto: "... the
current situation of the Kaingang Indians in Rio
Grande do Sul, particularly as regards the successive
invasions of Nonoai Reserve by intruders, FUNAI's
position and that of other official agencies concerned
is characteristically cautious and dilatory, which
tends to strengthen the 'status quo.' In this respect,
there is no difference between the actions of FUNAI
and of the SPI [the former Indian Protection Service]
both of which are incapable of making any material
change in the general system of usurpation and
degradation to which Indians are being subjected."
(from: "The Situation of the Indian in South
America," World Council of Churches, 1972.)
Professor Silvio Coelho dos Santos, Director of the
Anthropological Museum at the Federal University of
Santa Catarina, says of Indians in the states of Parana,
Santa Catarina, and Rio Grande do Sul: "Drunk,
dressed in rags, and starving, hiding in the brush or
begging by the roadside, the several thousands of
Indians on the Rio Grande do Sul Reserves have been
virtually ignored during the recent months of
widespread news coverage about their tribal brothers
to the north." (Veja, February 28, 1973.)
Engineer Moises Westphalen, a university professor
and renowned expert on the Indian problem, says:
"The gaucho [Rio Grande do Sul] government has
always participated in the usurpation of Indian lands,
and FUNAI is completely ineffective. What they are
doing to the Indians in Rio Grande do Sul is
genocide, because these people cannot live without
land." (O Estado do Sao Paulo, March 28, 1972.)
To the North, in the State of Mato Grosso, the
Xavante Indians are said to be "on the warpath and
ready to react against any invasion of their Reserves."
(Jornal do Brasil, July 8, 1972.)
The Tapirapes were recently "threatened with
removal from their lands by FUNAI" which wanted
to "relocate them on the llha do Bananal, giving way
to pressures exerted by the Companhia Colonizadora
Tapiraguaia." (O Estado de Saio Paulo, April 4, 1972.)
"The Galera and Sarare Indians of the

Nhambiquara group, whom FUNAI is moving to a
native reserve, are in such a precarious state of health
that, several months ago, an outbreak of influenza
arising from contact with whites decimated the entire
tribal population in the 15 year-old age group." (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, May 31, 1972.) Relocation of
the Nhambiquara resulted from pressures to assign
their lands to powerful economic groups.
In Gofas, it is reported that ". 250 Xerente
Indians are attempting to assume control of the town
of Tocantinias, having already taken over several
estates. The Indians claim ownership of the lands on
which they live." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, September
3, 1971.)
On the island of Bananal, where the Indians are a
spectacle for tourists staying at the John F. Kennedy
Hotel, we read the following: "The Karajas Indians
roam drunk through the city of Sao Felix in Mato
Grosso. The Indians cross the river screaming loud in
the night." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, March 31, 1972.)
On April 19, 1973, the so-called "Indian Day" in
Brazil, we received a letter from Luciara signed by
125 inhabitants of the Island of Bananal and
addressed to the Director of the Araguaia Indian
Park. Among other things, it said: "On their behalf
(the Karajas Indians of Luciara), we request urgent
intervention by FUNAI. Some of them are seriously
ill (tuberculosis) and all of them are completely
abandoned. They need special help on a permanent
In Bahia, we find the same violation of Indian
rights: "Men addicted to alcohol, women becoming
domestic servants, children dying before they reach
their first birthday this is how the Quirisis Indians
live, a tribe now in decline at Vila de Mirandelo, 293
kilometers from the capital city of Salvador." (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, January 1971.)
The Pataxos Indians of Bahia protested against an
attempt to remove them from their aboriginal
territory in the following terms: "We, the Indians, are
like a plant which, when moved from its place of
origin, if it does not die, at least it suffers greatly. We
cannot agree to leave here because we were on this
land many years before the Park existed. For better
or worse, it is ours, it is where we were born, where
we were brought up, and where our fathers and
forefathers died and were buried." (Jornal do Brasil,
February 20, 1972.)
In Para, ". the Indians (Gavioes) have just been
moved to another area by FUNAI. But they were so
traumatized that the women even aborted their
babies in order not to give birth to children, since
infants, according to them, made it difficult for the
tribe to move. And the tribe was always moving from
place to place, fleeing from the white man." (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, May 25, 1972.)
A group of them ". .. in rags and starving, arrived in
Fortaleza to ask for help" and in their simple
language denounced FUNAI because it is headed by
civilized men, and "civilized men cheat the Indian."
(O Estado de Sao Paulo, December 15, 1971.)
In the Northeast, "Xucurus, Fulni6s, Pankararus,
and Hamues survive in :pite of being confined to
a fraction of their former territory and wander from
place to place always being chased away." (O-Jornal,
April 29, 1973.)

"In Rondonia, occupation affects both the Indian
and the ecology." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, May 22,
Death arises everywhere and the fact that those
responsible are the "squatters, prospectors and rubber
planters who invade Indians lands .. ." is what the
President of FUNAI himself has to recognize. (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, December 3, 1971.) But the real
responsibility, as was reported by the Chamber of
Deputies in Brasilia, belongs with FUNAI because "it
has given permission to mining companies to prospect
for ore in the native areas ..." (Correio Brasiliense,
December 8, 1971.)
In this rapid review of the Indian situation, it is
quite clear, as stated by Professor Newton Maia,
Director of the Department of Genetics at the
University of Parana, ". that Brazilian Indians are
being exterminated. With the advancement of white
civilization there have been clashes, and it is always
the Brazilian Indian who is most affected. This
extermination does not take place only because of
more powerful weapons, but also from biological
causes introduced by the white man." (Veja, April 5,
In May 1968, a Task Force created by Presidential
decree to investigate the Indian Protection Service
(SPI) declared: "Notwithstanding strong legislation
which, from the colonial period, has tried co protect
our Indians, debasement of these forest-dwellers
continues. The difficulties of enforcing these laws and
the slowness of bureaucratic processes in cases of
invasion or expropriation are incentives for the
continued usurpation of Indian lands. Always
illegally, by fraud or by violence, the land has been
taken from its original holders. It is not unusual for
such acts of dispossession to be 'legitimized,' under
the concealment of a decree, law, or administrative
act." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, May 1968.)
It is our position that in spite of the creation of a
new agency to protect Indian rights (FUNAI), their
situation continues to be the same, if not worse, than
that described in the Task Force's investigation of
SPI. We are in agreement with the chief of the Karaja
tribe who bitterly declared, "FUNAI and SPI are the
same thing."


The "Brazilian Model" is a term used by government
planners and economists to describe the specific combination
of state incentives, international aid and investment and
private financing used to promote economic growth and
development in Brazil.

Although newspaper reports on the situation of
Brazilian Indian tribes have been extensive, they tend
to meet with indifference from the Brazilian public,
who hold an erroneous view which is both superficial
and biased as far as native populations are concerned.
For the vast majority of Brazilians, the Indian is no
more than a "savage," a relic of the past.
The native population of Brazil is the victim of
every conceivable form of injustice. Indian policy
itself is attracting the most severe criticism to the

point of being "... completely worthless and a mass
of contradictions." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, May 13,
1971.) Most important, as the now retired Indian
agent, Antonio Cotrim Soares, stated: "An urgent
reformulation of the methods of FUNAI is the only
way of avoiding the destruction of the Brazilian
Indians by civilization." (O Estado de Sao Paulo,
April 20, 1973.)
With the exception of a few dedicated and
knowledgeable Indian agents, FUNAI is characterized
by a total lack of preparation for the mission which it
is entrusted to fulfill. It has become, in the words of
Dr. Amaury Sadock, an enormous piece of
bureaucratic machinery centered in Brasilia ". .
whose decisions are alien to the well-being of the
native community." (O Estado de Sao Paulo, August
9, 1973.)
In order to awaken national consciousness and to
clarify the "Indian Problem," which in essence is a
problem of ourselves, it is necessary to analyze the
underlying causes which are leading to the
extermination of Indian peoples in Brazil. Basically,
these causes are general in scope, rooted in the ways
in which the Indian policy of FUNAI is related to the
wider political and economic directives of the
Brazilian state. It is impossible to reformulate a valid
native policy without redefining principles and
concepts and without placing it in the context of the
national policy of which it forms a part. In the case
of Brazil, the critical issue is the "Brazilian Model," a
global scheme of development which defines the
policy and practice of FUNAI.
Political leaders of the country do not hide the
fact that "integrated and dependent capitalism" has
been chosen as the means of "progress" for Brazil. It
has also been demonstrated that the "Brazilian
model" contemplates a form of "development,"
which only benefits a small minority of Brazilians,
and the powerful international eocnomic groups who
they represent. The result of this option, rather than
bringing about true development, is the increasing
marginalization and theft of the Brazilian people,
whether they be craftsmen or laborers, small urban or
rural property owners or tenants, leaseholders,
sharecroppers, agricultural workers, underemployed
or unemployed.
Even more serious is the fact that the country as a
whole is becoming more dependent on other richer
and stronger nations, which prevents a national
development experience, defined and undertaken by
the Brazilian people themselves (See "En Ouvi O
Clamor do Meu Povo," and "Marginalizacao de um
Povo, Grito das Igrejas," recent Brazilian Church
All administrative sectors of the government,
including FUNAI, have been created to fulfill the
political and economic directives contained in the
"Brazilian Model." Since these directives follow an
anti-national and anti-popular line, the function of
various government agencies is to mitigate and
monitor any social tensions which arise. As the
ethnologist, Carlos Moreira Neto of the National
Research Council, has argued: "Brazil is going
through a development fever which has had
detrimental influence upon FUNAI." (O Popular,
November 22, 1973.)

"When the territory where only Indians live begins
to receive colonists, forestry workers and ore
prospectors, the authorities resolve the inevitable
conflict between Indians and whites when there are
still Indians left by relocating the native group to
another area more removed from civilization and
sometimes already populated by enemy tribes." (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, November 7, 1972.)
A number of commentators have highlighted the
essentially economic motives behind FUNAI policy.
Deputy Jeronimo Santana vehemently declared:
"FUNAI ... has become an entity where groups take
refuge to exploit the natural resources of the reserves
where the Indians live. Today it is the Indian who is
of least importance. The Indian is a 'thing' and the
policy put into effect by FUNAI proves it." (O
Estado de Sao Paulo, January 19, 1972.)
The "occupation of Amazonia" forms part of the
government's overall development policy, as do the
foreign or multinational companies who find great
opportunities for lucrative investments in mining and
forestry operations or in the organization of
cattle-raising enterprises.
Claudio Villas Boas claims: "They say it is
necessary to open up roads to populate and settle the
Amazon. Now the roads are open, and we can see
that man is still absent. The forests are being leveled
'not only to open up the roads, but also to introduce
cattle. The only way to conquer the Amazon is with
cattle And for this the Indians are being expelled
from. their reserves and our ecological balance is being
savagely mutilated." (Jornal do Brasil, April 21,
Minister of the Interior, Jose Costa Cavalcanti, has
said, "The development of Amazonia will not stop
because of the Indians." (ornal do Brasil, September
18, 1973.) According to this position, if the Indians
are there, but do not produce according to the
dictates of integrated and dependent capitalism, if
they do not have legal title to the land, if they do not
own agricultural enterprises, then they must give way
to the new "colonizers," they must withdraw from
their lands which "civilization" has now decided to
sell or give away to those destined to develop the
interior of the country. If the Indians thus
challenged and robbed of their theoretically
recognized rights, as well as their natural way of life
die, then let them die. If they resist, they are to be
opposed as though they were the invaders of their
own lands.
We submit that the real directives behind Indian
policy in Brazil are contained in the "Brazilian
Model" of development itself. Further, we believe
that the only way in which FUNAI's policy can be
radically changed is through a complete change in
Brazilian policy as a whole. Without this total change,
FUNAI or any other agency will be unable to go
beyond the limits of a cheap and hypocritical
welfarismm" for those who have been condemned to
die; an agency which camouflages unprofessed
support of large landowners and the exploiters of our
national wealth.



From what has been thus far said, the immediate
conclusion would be that there is no solution to the
so-called "Indian Problem" in Brazil. Experts on the
Brazilian interior, officials and missionaries who reach
out to new groups of Indians are tormented by the
awareness that the result of their labors is only to
delay (or accelerate?) the extinction of these groups
by a few years. As the young Indian agent, Apoena
Meireles, has said: "It is with sadness that we are
attempting to bring them here, knowing that a future
without prospects awaits them." (Correio da Manha,
September 19, 1972.)
Notwithstanding this tragic prospect, or precisely
because of it, the native peoples who are threatened
with extinction must be saved. They, far more than
the records of humanity, are living humanity. This is
why it is necessary that only persons and entities who
are aware, competent, and unbiased should be
mobilized to solve this problem.
We are in disagreement with the repeated
statements of the Minister of the Interior that "The
Indian problem is a problem for Brazil." (O Estado de
Sao Paulo, March 25, 1972), and that "other
countries know nothing about the problem of the
Brazilian Indian." (O Estado de Siio Paulo, November
9, 1973.) The misnamed "Indian Problem" is a
problem for humanity, a problem whose causes and
motivations are perhaps better known in countries
where there is freedom of information and discussion
than in Brazil.
In the final analysis, there are millions of human
beings in the Americas and several thousands in
Brazil, who, for centuries, have suffered the gravest
injustices inflicted by a "race" which claims to be
superior. If the conscience of humanity were equal to
the volume of information, such an iniquitous
situation would no longer be tolerated. The "Indian
Problem" in Brazil cannot be understood, and much
less solved, unless it is situated in its international
At the same time, however, it is also obvious that
no adequate solution will be found if this problem is
separated from its national context, taking into
account that the Indians only constitute several
thousands within the crushing majority of millions of
Brazilians living in poverty and wretchedness.
'Civilized' society will only have the right to speak
of integration of the Indian when no one is dying of
hunger in its midst." (0 Popular, November 22,
Perhaps most important is the need for a change
among ourselves. We must recognize that the
Christian entities which are most concerned with
"giving assistance" to the Indians often lack
socio-political awareness and vision. Accordingly, on
the dubious pretext of alienated charity, they
frequently betray their mission of tenaciously
defending (Indians) from physical and cultural death
or respecting their freedom and dignity as human
"The Catholic Fathers themselves," a recent article
states, "after more than 100 years of preaching, are
being obliged to change tactics, for if they continue
to pursue the same goal from Anchieta and N6brega,

what they would achieve would be disintegration,
marginalization, destruction, and death of what
remains of Brazilian native groups. And this change in
tactics is precisely with a view to respecting Indian
peoples, their beliefs and ways of life, appreciating
their culture instead of trying to impose our culture
upon them." (0 Popular, November 22, 1973.)


In conclusion, we believe that the crucial question
is this: What would Brazil be if it truly relied upon
the Indians, rather than attempting to annihilate
them as at present?
It is quite possible that many capitalist and
imperialist-minded Brazilians and authorities fear this
question, which shows that, consciously or
unconsciously, they support the extinction of these
peoples who, by virtue of their positive values,
constitute a living denial of the capitalist system as
well as of the "values" of a so-called "Christian
Without assuming the idyllic vision of a Rousseau,
we feel it urgently necessary to recognize and make
public certain values which are more human, and thus
more "evangelical," than our "civilized" values and
which constitute a true alternative to our society:

1. The native peoples in general have a system
of using the land base for the community and
not for the individual. There is therefore no
possibility for the domination of some by
others on the basis of private exploitation of
the means of production.
2. All production resulting from labor or the
utilization of the riches and, therefore, the
entire economy is based on the needs of the
people, and not on profit.
3. The only purpose of the social organization
is to guarantee survival and the rights of all, not
just of a privileged few.
4. The educational process is characterized by
the exercise of freedom.
5. The organization of power is not despotic
but shared.
6. The native population lives in harmony with
nature and its phenomena, unlike our
"integration" with various forms of pollution,
and the destruction of the natural habitat.
7. The discovery, development and existence
of sex enters into the normal rhythm of the
Indian's life in an atmosphere of respect,
without the characteristics of taboo or idolatry
which are manifested in our society and have so
much influence over it.

This year, when we are celebrating the 25th
anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights, if
we compared these rights with our civilized reality
and with the Indian reality, perhaps we would be
surprised to discover that the Indians live and respect
them more than the nations who were responsible for
their formulation.
If we had the courageous humility to learn from
the Indians, perhaps we would change our
individualistic ideas and our economic, political,
social, and religious structures so that, instead of
domination of some by others, we could make the
world harmonious through cooperation.
The time has come to announce, in hope, that he
who would have to die is the one who must live.

(December 25, 1973)

Signed by:

Dom Maximo Biennes (Bishop of Caceres)
Dom HWlio Campos (Bishop of Viana)
Dom Estevio Cardoso de Avellar (Bishop of Marabi)
Dom Pedro Casaldaliga (Bishop of Sio Felix)
Dom Tomis Balduino (Bishop of Goiis)
Dom AgostinhoJose Sartori (Bishop of Palmas)
Frei Gil Gomes Leitao (Marabi)
Pe. Antonio Iasi (Diamantino)
Frei Domingos Maia Leite (Conceicao do Araguaia)
Pe. Antonio Canuto (Sao Felix)
Pe. Leonildo Brustolin (Palmas)
Pe. Tomas Lisboa (Diamantino)

"All my work as a doctor among the Indians of Brazil was oriented to a
single idea: that the rapid process of civilizing the Indian is the most
effective form of killing him."
-Dr. Noel Nutels, famous Brazilian Indianist
with over 25 years of medical experience
among Brazilian tribes.

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"During my term of office, I will attempt to remove the Indian from the
pages of the press."
-General Oscar Jeronimo Bandeira de Melo,
on assuming office as the President of the
National Indian Foundation (FUNAI),
June 1970.

'My task will be to integrate the Indian into national society, because it is
impossible to stop the process of development of the country with the
argument that Indians should be protected and maintained in their pure
-General Ismarth de Araujo,
on assuming office as the
President of the National Indian Foundation,
March 1974.

"Never before was so much being done for the Brazilian Indian as today
when we want to better the conditions of life of these groups and not let
them be treated as animals in a zoo for the pleasure of tourists. Our plan is
for their gradual integration into our society, participating in our economic
system; because if not, in the future, the process of development will not
leave one Indian alive in his own habitat."
-Sr. Jose Costa Cavalcanti,
former Brazilian Minister of the Interior,
November 9, 1973.

"This is a promise that I can strongly make: we are going to create a policy
of integrating the Indian population into Brazilian society as rapidly as
possible.... FUNAI constituted one of the important themes of my
conversations with the President. We think that the ideals of preserving the
Indian population within its own 'habitat' are very beautiful ideas, but
-Sr. Mauricio Rangel Reis,
Brazilian Minister of the Interior,
March 1974.





The following document is an abridged version of
a report written by a group of Brazilian anthropolo-
gists, and presented at the XLI International Congress
of Americanists, Mexico City, September 1974. Be-
cause of the nature of political repression in Brazil,
their names were not attached to the document.

At a time when General Ernesto Geisel replaces
General Garrastazu Medici (as Brazil's President), new
and grave dangers hang over the indigenous racial
minorities of Brazil. In his first public announcement,
the new Minister of the Interior, Mauricio Rangel
Reis declared:
"This is a promise that I can firmly make: We will
assume a policy of integrating the indigenous popula-
tion into Brazilian society in the shortest time pos-
sible We believe that the ideals of preserving the
indigenous population within its natural 'habitat' are
very nice ideals, but unrealistic."
This thesis is not new. With more or less emphasis,
it has come to be the dominant Indian policy of the
government since 1964. What is new is that the
government now has better conditions than ever
before to put this policy into practice. In December
1973, General Medici sanctioned a new law, the
Indian Statute, which established a legal basis for the
"rapid integration" of Indians, and the wholesale
expropriation of their lands.
The most notable aspect of this policy is that it
completely ignores the history of indigenous experi-
ence in Brazil, which has proven, over a period of 70
years, that thd hundreds of tribes who have been
subjected to a policy of "rapid integration" do not
integrate into Brazilian society, but on the contrary,
rapidly deteriorate and disappear as a people.


The National Indian Foundation (FUNAI) was
created in 1968 in order to counter various accusa-
tions that the Brazilian government was practicing a
policy of genocide against its remaining Indian
peoples and tribes.
In its original statutes, FUNAI was presented as a
synthesis of the most advanced aspects of Brazilian
indigenous policy. It incorporated the conclusions of
the Brazilian indigenous experience, and endorsed the
principles of the United Nations and the International
Labor Organization as regards human and minority
lm g g a a MHa Ma)Ia-a Xa

The first article of the FUNAI statutes included
the following:
a. respect for tribal institutions and communities;
b. guarantee of the permanent possession of lands
which Indians inhabit, and the exclusive use of
natural resources therein, according to the
Brazilian Constitution;
c. preservation of the biological and cultural equi-
librium of Indian communities in contact with
national society;
d. defense of the spontaneous acculturation of
Indian communities, rather than their rapid and
enforced acculturation.
At the same time, pressured by public and inter-
national opinion, the government promised support
for the Xingu National Park, and the creation of five
new indigenous parks: the Tumucumaque Indian
Park, in the extreme north of the state of Para, the
Aripuana, in Rondonia and the extreme west of Mato
Grosso; the Araguaia, on the Island of Bananal; the
Ianomami,in the extreme north of Amazonas; and the
Atalaia of the North, in the west of Amazonas.
By 1970, however, FUNAI began to change its
policy, and deviate from the principles stated in its
original charter. Economic groups from the south of
the country, large landowners, and foreign corpora-
tions began to pressure the government to open up
the lands of the Amazon, and opposed the recogni-
tion of Indian rights. The government announced
plans for the construction of the Trans-Amazonic
Highway, mobilized financial support from inter-
national agencies such as the World Bank, and intro-
duced a system of fiscal incentives to lure investments
into the Amazon region. Finally, several FUNAI
declarations began to assume an entrepreneurial posi-
tion, arguing that Indians must be integrated as a
manual labor force into Amazonian development and
On January 25, 1971, the President of FUNAI
signed a decree which read: "Assistance to the Indian
will be complete as possible, but cannot obstruct
national development nor block the various axes of
penetration into the Amazon region."
In accordance with this new orientation, FUNAI's
central preoccupation became the rapid attraction
and pacification of tribes living along the route of the
Trans-Amazonic Highway. Immediately, it became
clear that FUNAI's function was not the protection
of constitutionally recognized Indian rights, but the
protection of highway workers against a supposed
Indian threat.

Thus, the solemn dispositions of the FUNAI pro-
gram (i.e., respect for the rights of tribal minorities)
were left on paper, and the government began to
repeat the genocidal policies of the past. Today, it is
more than three years since these policies have been
put into practice. Let us briefly consider what has


1. The Jurunas, Araras, Paracanas,
Assurinis, and Karardos:

At the end of 1970, FUNAI "attraction" teams
contacted the first tribes along the route of the
Trans-Amazonic Highway in the state of Para: the
Jurunas, 75 kilometers from Altamira, and the
Araras, on the banks of the Penetacui River, 170
kilometers from the highway. By 1972, of the 200
Araras contacted, no more than 50 were left. The
tribe had abandoned its village, and was wandering,
perplexed, along the highway, in the darkest of
Also, in 1970, contact was established with a
group of Paracana Indians, in the valley of the Pacajas
River, to the north of the Serra do Caraji. Support
for the "pacification" of the Paracanas was provided
by the United States Steel Company, who, in
conjunction with the state-owned firm of Vale do Rio
Doce, had obtained a large iron ore concession in the
On December 18, 0, a helicopter carrying a
FUNAI delegate and a director of United States Steel
arrived in the area, and made contact with 25 Para-
cana tribesmen. The Indians were given blankets, and
immediately were stricken by an epidemic of influ-
Within six months of first contact, not less than 40
Paracanas had died from influenza. At the same time,
FUNAI officials were reported to be having sexual
relations with Indian women.
By order of General Ismarth de Araujo, a judicial
investigation was called, but only the accused persons
were heard, and they denied everything. FUNAI
announced that "the denunciations were totally un-
founded." Meanwhile, the two lower-level Indian
agents who had made the original accusations were
In November 1971, Dr. Antonio Madeiros visited
the Paracana village and found a pattern of promis-
cuity between "civilized people" and the Indians.
Thirty-five Indian women, and two FUNAI officials
were found to havevenerel disease. Eight children in
the village were born blind, as a result of gonorrhea,
and at least six children died from dysentary. In
February 1972, another influenza epidemic struck.
Doctors were sent to the area, but without medicines,
leading to the death of more members of the tribe.
A similar process occurred during the "pacifica-
tion" of the Assurini and Kararao tribes. Of 80 to
120 Assurini contacted in their village along the
banks of the Bacajas River in 1971, no one knows

how many exist today. Of 85 Kararao Indians, first
contacted in 1965 and later "pacified" during the
opening of the Trans-Amazonic Highway, only three
miserable individuals remained in 1972.

2. The Tembes:

The Tembe live on the banks of the Gurupf River,
along the border between Para and Maranhao. For
several years they were protected against land inva-
sions by a title deed provided by the government of
Para. Nevertheless, in the late 1960s, FUNAI began to
negotiate with King Ranch, a United States-based
enterprise, for the transference of the Tembe lands.
In order to receive financial incentives from the
government agency charged with the development of
the Amazon region (SUDAM), the King Ranch
needed a certificate demonstrating that no Indians
occupied these lands. FUNAI provided them with the
certificate. Then the King Ranch, together with the
government, began proceedings for the voiding of
Indian title, and the Tembe were dispossessed of their
The invasion of the Tembe Reserve is typical of
what is happening to Indian lands all along the
Trans-Amazonic Highway. By the end of 1973,
almost all of the region was occupied by agricultural
enterprises, colonization projects, or mining firms. Of
eleven reserves created by government decree to
receive tribes found along the highway, not one has
been concretely planned or protected against outside


1. The Tapirapes, Carajas, and Javaes:

The Tapirape Indians live near the town of "Santa
Teresita," along the Mato Grosso side of the Araguaia
River. Protected over the past decade by a religious
mission, their population nearly doubled, reaching
104 persons in 1972.
The Tapirape territory, however, was included in
the immense landholdings bought by the Tapiraguaia
Colonization Company, a Sao Paulo real estate firm
supported by incentives from SUDAM. Typically,
FUNAI did not come to the defense of the Indians,
but rather decided to relocate them to the Araguaia
Indian Park on the Island of Bananal.
The Araguaia Indian Park was created by presi-
dential decree in 1971, and is the traditional territory
of the Caraji and Javae tribes. To call this island an
"Indian Park" is misleading, as for more than 10
years Bananal has been occupied by cattle ranches
and tourist hotels. The once great Caraji Nation is
now reduced to a couple of hundred people, with the
men corrupted by alcohol and the women prostitut-
ing themselves to local whites. An "Indian Hospital"
exists on the island, but 17 percent of the Carajis
have tuberculosis. The infant mortality rate is
The Javae tribe lives in the interior of the island.
Their territory has been surrounded by the barbed
wire fences of intruding cattle ranches, and they die
in misery from tuberculosis, tracoma, influenza and
measles. To date, the Tapirape have refused to be

removed to the "Park," aware of the inhuman condi-
tions they would face.

2. The Xavantes:

In 1945, the once large and powerful Xavante
Nation was "pacified," resulting in a large number of
deaths and tribal disorganization. The Xavante in-
habited a vast territory bordering on the States of
Mato Grosso and Gofas. During their "pacification,"
and the ensuing invasion by cattle ranches, a number
of Xavante bands were relocated to mission stations
and large ranches. In the 1960s, one group of Xavante
was carried by airplane to the immense Suia-MissAi
Ranch (680,000 hectares), owned by a wealthy Sao
Paulo industrialist and the Italian firm, Liquigas.
Throughout the 1960s tensions grew between the
2,000 member Xavante tribe and invading ranchers.
Finally, in 1969, the government conceded to the
Xavante demands, promising them a reserve which
comprised one-tenth of their original territory. The
Xavante, however, protested, arguing that the reserves
were too small, and that the cattle had driven away
all of their game. The Xavante continued to stand up
for their rights, blocking the highways being built
into their territory, and refusing to be forcibly re-
located as a cheap labor force to the surrounding
In 1972, the government again promised the
Indians new reserves. This time, however, the ranch-
ers protested, claiming that the land was theirs, and
refused to let government topographers measure the
Xavante lands. The Xavante again became demoral-
ized, claiming that neither the government nor the
ranchers respected their rights.
In October 1973, it was learned that three Xavante
were assassinated by local ranchers. The Federal
Police were sent to the Xavante region, but more to
protect the ranchers than to follow through with the
demarcation of the Indian reserves. As of March
1974, tension remained in the Xavante area, with
neither the Indians nor the large ranchers agreeing to
be moved.


1. The Cranhacarores:

In February 1973, the Villas Boas brothers made
first contact with the legendary and hostile Cran-
hacarore tribe. Actually, the brothers lamented this
"attraction mission," as they knew the fate that
would await the tribe. The contact, however, was
necessary because the Cuiab6-Santarem Highway
would pass within four kilometers of the Indian
Territory, and cattle ranches were beginning to sur-
round the tribe. Immediately following the Villas
Boas brother's contact, the contradictions of FUNAI
policy became clear.
In March 1973, President General Medici signed a
decree for the establishment of a Cranhacarore Re-
serve, but it did not include the territory inhabited by
the tribe. Further, throughout the year following
their "pacification," FUNAI officials at the Cran-

hacarore substation promoted the movement of
Indians from their village to the highway, where
construction crews were located. On January 6, 1974,
Brazilian newspapers carried a report on what was
happening to the Cranhacarore tribe.
According to Ezequias Paulo Heringer, an Indian
agent commissioned to investigate conditions along
the Cranhacarore front, the Indians had been intro-
duced to homosexuality by Antonio Souza Campinas,
the very man charged with their protection by
FUNAI. In a public denunciation, Heringer confirmed
that the Indians had abandoned their villages and
fields, and were mixing with soldiers and workers
along the Cuiabi-Santarem Highway. The Indians
were already addicted to alcohol, and were dying
from diseases.
Months before, several Indian agents, including
Orlando Villas Boas, had warned FUNAI against
placing Antonio Campinas in charge of the Cran-
hacarore front. Nevertheless, his character was sup-
ported by FUNAI, and Heringer rather than Campi-
nas, was punished by the government. Following the
initial press expose of his behavior, Campinas was
simply transferred to another "pacification" front,
but then after more public denunciations, he was
suspended by FUNAI.
As of March 1974, Cranhacarore tribesmen were
still reported to be dispersed along the highway,
fraternizing with truck drivers, begging for food.
Their fields were totally abandoned, and they were in
a state of sickness, hunger, and misery. The tribe was
totally disorganized, and without protection. In time,
they would either disappear, be taken as workers to
surrounding cattle ranches, or be forced to relocate
into the confines of the Xingu National Park.


1. The Cintas-Largas and Suruis:

Few tribes have suffered as much as the Cintas-
Largas, whose territory is located at the headwaters
of the Aripuana River, along the borders between
Mato Grosso and Rondonia states. Throughout the
1960s, they were victims of a series of massacres,
which included the slaughter of Indian women and
children, the bombing of their villages, and death
through "presents" of sugar mixed with arsenic
Finally, in 1968, a FUNAI "pacification" team
convinced the Cintas-Largas to live peacefully with
settlers along the expanding frontier, and in 1971 the
Aripuafia Indian Park was created to protect the more
than 2,000 Cintas-Largas and Suruis Indians. Their
protection, however, was short lived, and immedi-
ately tragedy struck these tribes.
In October 1971, a measles epidemic arose among
a Surui band, and in December the Indians rebelled,
killing an Indian agent in charge of the Aripuana
General Bandeira de Melo, the President of
FUNAI, blamed the Indian rebellion on a number of
colonization companies who had invaded the Park,
but later it became known that these companies were
authorized by the Indian Foundation itself. One

company in particular, the Itaporanga Colonization
Company, was selling land parcels in the Park.
In January 1972, Deputy Jeronimo Santana of
Rondonia accused FUNAI of "patronizing" these
invasions and failing to protect Indian rights. He
provided evidence that several tin mining companies,
including Compania Espirito Santo de Mineracao
(owned by W. R. Grace-Patiiio) and Compania Auxil-
iar de Mineracao (controlled by the Halles banking
group) were given permission to prospect in the Park.
Later, in November 1972 it was learned that
gunmen has been hired to assassinate the Cintas-
Largas tribe. At the same time, a French doctor,Jean
Chiappino, reported that the Suruis were being deci-
mated by tuberculosis and malnutrition. He con-
firmed that more than 20 Surui had died from
tuberculosis in the previous months, all located at the
"Seventh of September" Indian Post.
In March 1973, SUDECO, the agency in charge of
development of the central-west region, announced
the construction of a highway through the Aripuafia
Park. Some days later, FUNAI announced that it had
given permission for the building of the road.
Finally, in October 1973, FUNAI announced that
the original demarcation of the Aripuafia Indian Park
was "hasty," and declared that it would be reduced
too one-third of its present size.. At the same time, it
was learned that ten mining companies were given
prospecting rights in the Park, including multinational
affiliates of Billington Corporation, Royal Dutch
Shell, the Itau financial group, an associate of the
Rockefeller-Moreira Salles group, and the Molyb-
denium Corporation (MOLYCORP).
Apoena Meireles, the Indian agent who led the
first "pacification" expeditions to the Cintas-Largas,
"Today, there is a tragic reality in the Aripuafia
Park. In less than four years, the lands of the
Cintas-Largas have begun to be invaded, the epi-
demics have already left their mark, and many of
them have fallen along the road where they have
found misery, hunger, and prostitution of their


The tribes who are most distant from the fronts of
expansion are in the large area to the north of the
Amazon Basin, within the regions of Amapa, north-
ern Pari, Roraima, and western Amazonas. There are
no less than 10,000 Indians in this region, dispersed
in hundreds of villages.
Throughout this century, the Indian population
has greatly diminished as a result of various forms of
slavery created by the rubber and Brazil nut industrial
booms. Today, the major threat to Indian survival lies
in the construction of the Northern Perimeter,
Alenquer-Surinam, and Manaus-Caracarai-Boa Vista
The Northern Perimeter Highway will extend for
2,500 kms. and pass through several Indian areas.
FUNAI has announced that it will go ahead of
construction crews, in order to insure the survival of
Indian groups. In reality, this has not happened. The
work on the Northern Perimeter Highway began in
August 1973, and only in November did FUNAI

receive the necessary funds to send "attraction
teams" to the region. On November 20, 1973, forest
workers on the Northern Perimeter encountered a
group of 50 uncontacted Indians near Caracarai,
without being accompanied by a single functionary of
Five tribes (the Parakot6, Charuma, Warikyana,
Vayana, and Tiri6), numbering approximately 5,000
persons, in the region of the Trombetas River, in
northern Pari, have two highways moving in their
direction. The majority of these Indians are within
the area of the Tumucumaque Indian Park. Neverthe-
less, this Park, created by a decree of 1968, has
recently been closed, in all probability, to avoid
criticism once the highways intrude within its bound-
In Roraima, land speculation has received a great
impulse in the past few years. The government agency
charged with agrarian reform, INCRA, has demar-
cated private properties in the area, but as of yet has
not delineated any Indian lands. Over 3,000 Indians
live in this region, including the Macuchi and Vapit-
xana tribes, whose lands have passed into the hands
of large agri-businesses. On May 18, 1973, a group of
gunmen invaded a Macuchi village, killing one Indian,
and injuring several others.
In southern Roraima, both the Manaus-Boa Vista
and Northern Perimeter Highways are crossing the
territories of the Atroari, Waimiri, Machacali, and
Iauaperi tribes. Since 1968, a series of conflicts have
emerged between these tribes and invading highway
workers and settlers.
The Atroari and Waimiri resisted the intrusion of
the Manaus-Boa Vista Highway in their territory,
killing a priest and eight other workers sent to
"pacify" the tribes. In April 1970, a merchant con-
tracted six gunmen to hunt down these Indians, and
nine Attroaris were assassinated. No one has yet been
convicted for these crimes, although they caused a
scandal in the Brazilian press.
Farther to the West, the Northern Perimeter High-
way will cross the northern part of the State of
Amazonas, passing through the territory of the lano-
mami tribe. In 1968, and again in 1971, FUNAI
promised that a Park would be created for the
approximately 5,000 lanomami-speaking Indians on
the Brazilian side of the frontier, but to date no Park
has been created.
An even greater concentration of Indians is found
in the extreme west of Amazonas, in the basin of the
Solimoes River. In this region, which will also be
crossed by the Northern Perimeter Highway, live
several thousand Indians, the principal groups being
the Baniwa and Tucana tribes. The Atalaia do Norte
Indian Park, decreed in 1968, and promised by
General Bandeira de Melo again in 1972, still remains
on paper.
Meanwhile, even previous to the arrival of the new
highway, problems between Indians and whites have
arisen: sickness, slavery in the rubber plantations,
bloody conflicts. In 1972, the Marubo Indians at-
tacked lumber workers in the area. Then in 1973, an
Indian post was attacked by the Marubo, in retalia-
tion against broken promises by FUNAI.


In November 1973, General Ismarth de Arauijo,
one of the numerous generals who occupy a high
administrative post in FUNAI and who in the govern-
ment of General Geisel has been promoted to its
Presidency, announced in Brasilia that a change in the
orientation of the Xingu National Park was inevitable.
He declared that it was the official intention of the
government "to integrate into society" the 15 tribes
that live in the Park.
Orlando and Claudio Villas Boas, the two world
famous brothers who for 29 years have dedicated
themselves to the protection of the Indians of the
Xingu, immediately protested. They argued once
again that such rapid integration would lead these
tribes to the destiny of hundreds of others in Brazil.
"Our position," Orlando Villas Boas said, "is not
novel. The Indian culture must be protected until the
Indian has the option of integration." He went on to
state that if a change in national policy was made, he
and his brother would submit their resignations to
The Xingu National Park, home of 15 tribes
representing the four major aboriginal language
groups of Brazil, is a legend of humanism, an admir-
able and respected work which has been publicly
recognized both within Brazil and abroad. Yet,
throughout its history, the Park has always had its
enemies, those who would forsake Indian rights, and
rob Indian peoples of their lands.
In 1961, when President Janio Quadros signed the
law creating the Park, there was strong opposition on
the part of landowners in the Brazilian Congress and
in the bastions of government. Fortunately, this
threat was controlled, but in 1970 again, large land
owners, motivated by fiscal incentives provided by
the Brazilian government, again were demanding the
Xingu lands.
Huge cattle ranches began to arrive at the frontiers
of the Xingu Park, provoking incidents, invading its
limits, and looking for Indians as a cheap source of
Then in February 1971, the government an-
nounced the construction of a highway through the
Park. The highway was being built by the Super-
intendency for the Development of the Center-West
(SUDECO), an agency within the Brazilian Ministry
of the Interior, like FUNAI.
At the time of the announced invasion, the Min-
ister of the Interior claimed, "We will give all assis-
tance to the Indian, but he cannot be an obstacle to
the development of the country." The President of
FUNAI confirmed his view, adding that, "the high-
way will not prejudice the Park."
Behind the SUDECO highway project were some
of the most powerful agri-business associations in
Brazil: The Association of Agri-Businessmen of the
Amazon, Federation of Agriculture of Mato Grosso
(FEMATO), The Development Corporation of Mato
Grosso (CODEMAT). Reinforcing their desire for
land were several foreign companies and various
powerful economic groups from the south of the
country: BRADESCO, Manah, Union Paulista, Code-
spar, Codeara, Anderson Clayton, Magalhaes Pinto,

Borden, Electro-Radiobraz, Reunidas, Liquigas,
Ometto, King Ranch, etc.
The BR-80 Highway was planned to cut through
the northern part of the Xingu National Park. An-
other highway, it was soon discovered, was planned
to connect the ranches of the Xingu Basin with the
Cuiaba-Santarem Highway, passing through the
middle of the Park.
As the press reports emerged, it became known
that a private plane belonging to the Reunidas. group
was used to fly officials over the Xingu, and that the
Brazilian Minister of the Interior had dined with
businessmen in the area at the Suia-Missu ranch as
early as April 22, 1969.
In March 1971, one of the directors of SUDECO
stated in the newspaper O Globo, ". the immense
lands that form part of the territory of the Park are
able to be used rationally, with the creation of
experimental farms, in which the Indians would be
employed in the work and cultivation of the fields."
To legitimize the invasion of the Park, a press
campaign was let loose with the intent of defaming
the Villas Boas brothers and their work.
"The Indians of the Xingu," a Director of
SUDECO claimed, "live in a state of incredible
misery, practically left to their own luck, because
those responsible for the Park consider it better to
maintain them in their natural state." The President
of FUNAI said: "The Indian is not a museum piece
... for the pleasure of foreign anthropologists who
know nothing about the national reality."
These criticisms were malicious and false. In truth,
those who made them were actual enemies of the
Indians, rather than those who were preoccupied with
the experience that the Xingu National Park repre-
sents. Never mentioned was the fact that throughout
the world, the Xingu National Park had been praised
as one of the most successful and humane forms of
Indianist protection in the entire history of the
Immediately following the invasion of the Xingu
Park by the BR-80 Highway, one section of the
Txucarramae tribe was displaced from its lands. At
the same time, several ranches began to converge
upon the northern limits of the Park, and a small
town of Brazilian settlers grew up along the banks of
the Xingu.
In November 1973, several Txucarramie tribesmen
entered the town, and they were stricken by measles.
The Brazilian press reported that more than a hun-
dred Indians were ill, and four had already died. Out
of desperation, Orlando and Claudio Villas Boas were
forced to convince the Txucarramae chiefs to lead
their remaining tribal members into the now reduced
limits of the Xingu National Park.


In a European television interview of February 13,
1970, the Brazilian Minister of the Interior, General
Costa Cavalcanti, emphatically declared: "I formally
reject the accusation that the Brazilian government
has at any moment practiced genocide against our
Indians.... The policy of the government of Brazil is
one of gradual integration. This is defined by the

directives set forth in Resolution 107 of the Inter-
national Labor Organization, of which Brazil is a
Let us consider what is exactly stated in Resolu-
tion 107 of the International Labor Organization
accords concerning the "integration" of tribal popula-
Article 2(c): "to create the possibility of national
integration, without means destined to artificially
assimilate tribal populations."
Article 4: "excluded is the use of force or coercion
with the object of integrating tribal populations."
Article 12: "tribal populations will not be displaced
from their territories without their free consent."
Article 13: "when such displacement does occur
under exceptional circumstances, the tribal popu-
lations will receive lands at least equal to those
which they previously occupied."
If we compare these dispositions with the facts
previously cited, it becomes clear that there is noth-
ing less than a basic contradiction between Resolu-
tion 107 of the International Labor Organization and
the Indian policy of Brazil.
Nevertheless, General Costa Cavalcanti has negated
before the world that the Brazilian government is
practicing genocide against the Indians. What he
overlooks are the facts of what is happening to the
Indians of Brazil, and the point that genocide is a
perfectly defined juridic concept.
The General Assembly of the United Nations,
through Resolution No. 96 of December 11,1946,
declared that genocide is a crime against international
law. Article 2 of the Resolution, which is written into
the Brazilian Penal Code, defines this crime as
Article 2: "By means of the present accord, genocide
is understood as any of the following acts, perpe-
trated with the intention of destroying, partially
or totally, a national, ethnic, or religious group:
a. to kill members of the group;
b. to inflict grave damages on the physical or
mental integrity of the members of the group;
c. to intentionally submit the group to conditions
of existence which forcibly produce their total
or partial physical destruction;
d. to adopt measures destined to impede births in
the group;
e. to forcibly transfer children from one group to
Point (c) alone is enough to condemn the Indian
policy of the government of Brazil as decisively


On December 19, 1973, General Garrastazu Medici
signed the new "Indian Statute," a law which sum-
marized the program of FUNAI concerning the des-
tiny of the tribal minorities in Brazil.
Every law must be viewed in relation to the reality
which it applies. Under present conditions, in which
the occupation and development of the Amazon is
taking place at an extremely rapid and destructive
pace, a genuine concern for the survival of tribal

communities should be reflected in a law which
reinforces and militantly protects their rights to exist.
Once such protection is affirmed, the law can then
treat "integration."
Basic to the new Indian Statute is its emphasis
upon the "rapid integration" of tribal populations.
On signing the Statute, General Medici declared:
"Thee cardinal objectives of the Statute consist pre-
cisely in the rapid and healthy [sic] integration of the
Indian into civilization."
Further, the new Statute highlights the entrepre-
neurial philosophy assumed by FUNAI since 1967,
including the increasing government interference in
Indian properties and lands and the penetration of
private businesses into tribal communities.
A number of other elements of the Statute are also
important to mention. First, Article 20 enables the
government "to intervene" in Indian areas for:
(a) "the imposition of national security," (b) "the
realization of public works that are in the interest of
national development," and (c) "for the exploitation
of the subsoil wealth of relevant interest to national
security and development." Indian groups, according
to this article, are able to be "removed from one
area to another" for such projects as highway and
reclamation construction, mining operations, or cattle
and lumber enterprises. It is essentially a mandate for
moving Indian tribes out of the way of any develop-
ment, rather than protecting them in their legitimate
rights to territory, resources, and land.
Second, President Medici vetoed Paragraph 2 of
Article 18 of the Statute which prohibited "third
parties from contracting Indians for practices or
activities such as hunting, fishing, and collection of
fruits, and also agricultural activities, cattle raising, or
extraction on Indian lands."
This veto not only provides an open field for the
exploitation of Indian lands by private businesses, but
provides a legal sanction for the conversion of Indians
into a cheap and available labor force along the
various interior "frontiers."
Third, Article 9 of the Statute lists various condi-
tions by which "any Indian is able to petition a
competent judge for his liberation from tutelage, and
bring him under the regime of civil law." The seem-
ingly liberal aspect of this article, in reality, abandons
the position of recognizing Indians as a people apart.
In place of an attempt to integrate and emancipate
the tribal community as a whole, it stimulates the
individual emancipation of the Indian, with the
motive of the extermination and disintegration of the
group. True, some individuals will be "integrated,"
but into a process of inhuman oppression, where false
promises will be used by economic groups to con-
vince Indian youths that they should become slaves
for the ranches and mines.
In summary, despite its liberal and modernizing
tone, the new Indian Statute provides a mandate for
the destruction of Indian communities in the name of
"assimilation" and "integration." General Medici
signed the Statute three months previous to the end
of his government. On entering office as the new
Minister of the Interior, General Mauricio Rangel Reis
affirmed the new regime's support of the Statute, and
declared: "Our policy is one of integrating the Indian
population into Brazilian society in the shortest time


Seven years ago international public opinion
became aware and was horrified by the crimes being
committed against the Indian peoples and tribes of
Brazil. A wave of international protest forced the
military government to act. An avalanche of new laws
apd decrees were passed seemingly in favor of the
Indians. Brazilian ambassadors were sent around the
world to counter the accusations and make promises
of change. International laws, such as those of the
United Nations and its agencies, were used to legiti-
mize the Indian policy of Brazil.
Yet, as we have seen, these crimes continue. The
situation of the Brazilian Indian today remains one of
extreme gravity. They are being threatened now as
never before. In the disguise of a new rhetoric, and
through a series of false promises and lies, Indians
continue to be systematically exterminated and de-

Brazil has signed Resolution 96 of the United
Nations which defines the crime of genocide, and
Resolution 107 of the International Labor Organiza-
tion which limits and defines government actions that
can be taken in the name of the "integration" of
tribal minorities. It would be an act of supreme
justice if the United Nations would petition the
military government of Brazil to account for the
situation of its Indians. A minute investigation must
be made. Threatened tribes must be visited. Reliable
witnesses, who exist, must be questioned. The Indian
policy of Brazil must again be judged by world
Brazil has promised before Humanity to preserve
the remaining Indians who live in her territory. But
the preservation of minorities is not a compromise of
one nation alone. It is a compromise of all Human-
ity ... The destiny of the Indian peoples of Brazil
must be accounted for before the other peoples and
nations of the world.
-March 16, 1974

"In our modest opinion, the true defense of the Indian is to respect him and
to guarantee his existence according to his own values. Until we, the
'civilized' ones, create the proper conditions among ourselves for the future
integration of the Indians, any attempt to integrate them is the same as
introducing a plan for their destruction. We are not yet sufficiently
-Orlando and Claudio Villas Boas,
Directors, Xingu National Park

"All through Brazilian history, from the most distant colonial times to the
present day, the efforts for the 'integration' of the Indian constituted the
essential and almost sole object of the official Indian policy. Throughout all
the epochs the 'integration' of the Indian was promoted by just wars and
forced pacification, by decimation, by forced labor, by religious conversion,
and however many more techniques which were or continue to be imagined
or suggested by interested sectors .... The Indian continues to be, today as
always, the object of the same 'integrationist' efforts."
-"The Indians and the Occupation of the Amazon,"
a document signed by 80 Brazilian ethnologists,
anthropologists, historians, and sociologists,
July 14, 1971.

()F. *'bP,

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"We found two temporary houses (along the new Cuiaba-Santarem
Highway), and a population of 35 persons, all suffering from grippe,
including the Kranhacarore chief, laquil, who did not know where he
was.... The customs of the tribe have degenerated and tobacco and alcohol
now form part of the new habits of the tribe. ..."
-"Contato Mudo Comportamento Kranhacarore,"
Estado de Sao Paulo,
January 1, 1974.


US$ Million
1. Brazilian Light Ltd. (CANADA) ........... .... ........ 142,038
2. Volkswagenwerk A.G. (GERMANY) ....................... 118,853
3. Britsh-American Tobacco (U.K.) .......................... 98,881
4. Rhone Poulenc S.A. (FRANCE) ........................... 80,606
5. Ford Motor Company (U.S.A.) ........................... 79,849
6. Standard Oil Company (NEW JERSEY-U.S.A.) ............... 71,531
7. Nippon Usiminas Kabushiki Kaisha (JAPAN) .......... ...... 61,050
8. Shell Overseas Holdings Ltd. (ENGLAND) ................... 57,194
9. Union Carbide Company (U.S.A.) ........................ 53,168
10. General Mclors Corp. (U.S.A.) ........................... 46,764
11. General Electric Company (U.S.A.) ........................ 46,193
12. Solvay & Cie. S.A (BELGIUM) ............................ 44,941
13. N.V. Anicvido Inc. (CURACAO) ......................... 43,724
14. N.V. Philips Gloeilampenfabriken (NETHERLANDS) ........... 33,388
15. Daimlei-Benz A.G. (GERMANY) .......................... 30,262
16. Johnson & Johnson (U.S.A.) .............. ............... 29,731
17. Atlantic Richfield Company (U.S.A.) ....................... 29,685
18. Anderson Clayton & Company (U.S.A.) .................... 29,032
19. Robert Bosch GmbH (GERMANY) ......................... 28,755
20. Daimler-Benz Holding A.G (GERMANY) .................... 28,332
551 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10017





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"How could you return to this world after seeing how we live? How can you
breathe this foul air or sleep with these noises (the traffic)? How can you eat
this food made to have tastes which are not its own? Why would you want to
have intercourse with these women who seem afraid to be women and hide
themselves and cover their eyes? And who are these men with guns who stand
in the paths of the village [the ever-present Brazilian military police] ?"

commenting upon his impressions on being taken to

St-Tawapuh, a Wausha tribesman,
the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo for medical treatment,
Sentemher. 1971

4 _q T
iP f Jr

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n ;


(in millions of dollars)

U.S. Agency for International Development .. $ 1,246.6*
PL 480 (U.S. Food for Peace Program) .......... 478.1*
U.S. Military Assistance Program .............. 186.1*
W orld Bank ............................. 1,168.3*
International Finance Corporation
(a World Bank affiliate) .................... 89.4*
Inter-American Development Bank ............. 776.4

U.S. Export-Import Bank ("long term loans") .... 271.2
Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC)
(insurance of U.S. investments) ............ 636.2

SOURCE: U.S. Agency for International Development,
U.S. Overseas Loans and Grants, July 1, 1945 to June
30, 1971 (Washington, D.C.; 1972).
NOTE: Date from fiscal 1964 to fiscal 1971; Asterisk*
indicates fiscal 1972 data taken from annual report of
the agency and added to the total as of 1971.

"You can buy the land out there now for the same price as a couple of
bottles of beer per acre. When you've got half a million acres and twenty
thousand head of cattle, you can leave the lousy place and go live in Paris,
Hawaii, Switzerland, or anywhere you choose."
-an American rancher who owns land in the Mato Grosso,
as quoted in Robin Hanbury-Tenison, A Question of
Survival for the Indians of Brazil (London, 1973).

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"We Indians are like plants: when changed from one place to another e
don't die but we never fully recover. We will not leave here because esen
before the reservation existed we already lived on this land. It ma. be bad. it
may be good but it's our land. We were born here, we grew up here. And %e
will die here like our fathers and grandfathers who are buried here."
-Tururin, chief of the Pataxo Indians.
a in Jornal do Brasil,
,- ,, February 20, 1972.
,-. N f ,
.I .. '"

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"Finally, Sinai showed the Juruna visitor an enormous forked stick that
supported the sky and said, 'The day our people die out entirely, I will pull
this down, and the sky will collapse, and all people will disappear. That will
be the end of everything."
-from the Juruna myth,
"Sinai: Flood and the End of the World."

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S"All Indians who let the white man move into his territory ended up losing
nearly all their land .... The Txucarramae do not want to kill anyone. But if
* caraiba [the Indian word for white mania invades our land, we will kill
Because the land was always ours and we never had to ask for it in the big
c i =, s." _C1, -Rauni, a Txucarramie chief,
jV ,:J ~December 6, 1973.


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3,100 mile road from north-
eastern Brazil to Peruvian

running north to south on
eastern edge of Amazon

running north to south through
west-central Brazil

2,500 mile road skirting northern
border between Brazil and
Guyana, Surinam, Venezuela,
Colombia, and Peru

major highway passing through
Mato Grosso and Rondonia


Juruna, Arara, Parakana, Asurini,

Gaviao, Krah6, Apinaye, Xavante,

Xingu National Park
(BR-080 Road)

Tumucumaque Indian Park
Yanomami Indian Park
Atalaia do Norte Indian Park


WORLD BANK: $400 million loan
to Brazilian Natl. Dept. of Roads
and Highways (DNER), largest loan
to highway sector in bank's

$3,898,350 loan to Camargo Correa,
S.A., largest construction company
in Brazil, for purchase of Caterpillar

U.S.A.I.D.:-$8.4 million grant for
training in use of remote sensing
data at Earth Resources Observation
Satellite headquarters, Sioux Falls,
South Dakota


HOUSE CORP.:-contracts for
Project Radam (Radar Amazon), $7
million aerial photographic survey
of Amazon6
770 pieces of machinery worth $47
million to Brazilian Army Engineer
Corps and 7 private companies
building Amazon roads7

KOMATSU (Japan), FIAT (Italy),
(U.S.):-other foreign companies
in $125 million earth-moving
equipment markets

Aripuana Indian Park

*** The following chart of foreign aid and investment in the Brazilian Amazon has been compiled from the files of INDIGENA and AMERICAN FRIENDS OF BRAZIL.
Numbered footnotes refer to the documentation at the end of the chart.



Serra dos Carajas, Para

Serra do Navio,
Territory of Amapa

concessions along Trombetas
River, Para


concessions in Territory
of Rondonia


northeast of Xingu National Park '0

south of Palikur

Tumucumaque Indian Park

Aripuana Indian Park 3
Cintas Largas


venture of state-owned Cia. Vale do

MINERIOS:-joint venture of
Antunes' CAEMI and BETHLE-

ALCOA, ALCAN (Canadian
spinoff of ALCOA), NIPPON

UNION:-Billiton/Royal Dutch

W.R. Grace/Patino

Moreira Salles/Molybdenium Corp.

Itau/National Lead Industries/
Portland Cement17


million loan to ICOMI for man-
ganese pellet plant in Serra do

CORPORATION (U.S.):-insurance
for Alcoa, W.R. Grace, and Hanna
Mining investments9

TION:-Project Radammineral
surveys of Amazon Basin for
Brazilian government and private

21 mineral and geological exploration
projects in collaboration with
National Department of Mineral
Production (DNPM) and state-owned
Mineral Research Corporation
(CRPM) under sponsorsorship of
Brazilian government and

Foreign Aid and Investment in the Brazilian Amazon (continued)



Ludwig/National Bulk Carriers

recent mergers and purchases by
Deltec International, International
Packers Ltd., and Brascan23


owned by Liquigas (Italy)2s

Q 66 Sao Paulo owned land and
00 cattle companies:-area of large
landholdings of Stanley Amos
Sellig (U.S. real estate



2.4 million acre farm and ranch
along Jari and Paru Rivers, Terri-
tory of Amapa

180,000 acre cattle ranch in
Paragominas, border between
Para and Maranhao

56,000 acre cattle ranch in
Santana do Araguaia, Para

1.4 million acre cattle ranch along
Suii Missu River, northern Mato

Municipios of Barra do Garcas
and Luciara, Mato Gr6sso

9 Apalai (Aparai) villages to north
and west

Tembe/Urubu- aapor
Indian Reserve -

several northern-Cayapo tribes29

Xingu National Park (north)
Xavante (south and east) 3o

Araguaia Indian Park
5 Xavante Reserves31


WORLD BANK:-$60 million loan
for improvement of cattle-raising
industry (1974), two former loans
of $76 million for meat production

U.S. A.I.D.:-$11.9 million loans to
Amapa Regional Development
Institute for agriculture and
livestock research-3

U.S. AJ.D.:-$32 million loan to
International Research Institute
(partly financed by Rockefeller
Foundation) for tropical rice
production studies in the Amazon

INSTITUTE:-project to sell herbi-
cide 2,4,5-T (Agent Orange) to
Brazilian government for deforesta-
tion of Amazon35



A. RUBBER (boom: 1890-1910/bust: 1910 to present, with brief
upsurge during World War II)

PERUVIAN AMAZON COMPANY:-British registered rubber
company which controlled most of northwestern frontier of
Brazil during boom years36

MADEIRA MAMORE RAILWAY:-250 mile railway promoted
by Col. George Earl Church, a New England entrepreneur and
railroad engineer, between Porto Velho and Guajari-Mirim,
completed in 191237

FORDLANDIA:-two and a half million acre rubber plantation
established by Henry Ford in 1927 on Tapajos River, north and
south of Santarem

Murder and slavery of 30,000 Indian people living on frontiers of
Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia, and Peru39

Extermination of 41 Indian nations in Jurui-Purus culture area,
Territory of Acre4

Extermination of Tupi-Kawahib nations in Tapaj6s-Madeira culture


B. TIMBER (major invasion by foreign companies in period from
1965 to present)42

COMPANHIA AMAZONAS MADEIRAS E LAMINADOS:- Major threat to remaining 94 Indian nations, numbering over
186,000 hectare Georgia-Pacific operation at Portel, Para 60,000 people, who live in the Amazon region 43

by Gilbert Imported Hardwoods, 120 miles from Belem

by Robin Hollis McGlohn

BRUMASA:-operation of Bruynzeel (Dutch) at Porto
Santana, Amapa

SUPERFINAS MADEIRAS LTD.:-operation of Toyomenka
(Japan) in the Breves Strait, mouth of Amazon River

project of D. K. Ludwig/National Bulk Carriers

MADEIRAS TROPICAIS LTDA.:-operation owned by
Beau Murphy (Atlanta, Georgia) at Porto Santana, Amapa


missionaries among 36 tribal groups; contracts with Brazilian Minister of the Interior, FUNAI, and Brazilian
National Museum.
NEW TRIBES MISSION (Woodworth, Wisconsin):-Extensive missionary program among Brazilian tribes; print
shop; training of Brazilian missionaries.45
INTERNATIONAL POLICE ACADEMY (Washington, D.C.):-Training of Military Police of State of Minas Gerais,
agency in charge of Rural Indian Guard in Brazil and Indian Prison Camp at Crenaque, Minas Gerais.46
CENTRO DE INSTRUCAO DE GUERRA NA SELVA (Jungle Warfare Training Center):-400 square mile tract
of virgin jungle in heart of Amazon near Manaus, established by Brazilian Army and U.S. advisors on model of
U.S. Army's Jungle Warfare Training Center at Fort Sherman in the Panama Canal Zone.47
LINDBLAD TRAVEL, INC. (New York):-"Green Hell" tours of Amazon area, particular focus upon tours
of Indian villages.4
HUDSON INSTITUTE (New York):-Herman Kahn's famous "Great Lakes" plan to flood, dam, and
"develop" entire Amazon Basin region of South America (1967)49
ARNOLD ARBORETUM, HARVARD UNIVERSITY (Cambridge,M assachusetts):-extensive ethnobotanical
and pharmaceutical research among Waika and other Indian tribes of northwestern Brazil for potential
commercial exploitation of native medicines and knowledge.50
INSTITUTE FOR CROSS-CULTURAL RESEARCH (Washington, D.C.):-a division of Operations and Policy
Research, Inc. which has published major maps of location of Brazilian Indian tribes, with specific reference
to "potentially hostile tribes." 51
U.S. BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS (Washington, D.C.):-planning and participation in VIIth Inter-American
Indianist Congress, Brasilia August 1972, a major attempt to legitimize Brazilian Indian policy before
international community.s



1) Sarita Kendall, "The Development of Transport
in Brazil" (Bolsa Review, October 1972); and
"Brazil: Imperial Road" (Latin America, Novem-
ber 17, 1972).
2) The major documentation on the invasion of
Indian lands by new highway projects is con-
tained in the following articles and reports: Abor-
igines Protection Society, Tribes of the Amazon
Basin in Brazil, 1972 (London, 1973); Edwin
Brooks, "No Through Road" (New Inter-
nationalist, March 1974); Edwin Brooks, "The
Brazilian Road to Ethnicide" (Contemporary
Review, May 1974).
3) "US. Agency Loans to Brazil Worth $1 Billion"
(Miami Herald, January 28, 1973); "External
Financing" in Rodavia (special publication of
Brazilian National Department of Roads and
Highways, 1972); and International Bank for
Reconstruction and Development, press releases
dated March 16, 1972 and August 10, 1972.
4) Export-Import Bank, press releases dated April
17 and October 26, 1972; also, Bruce Terris,
"U.S. Government Aid in the Amazon," Center
for Law and Social Policy, Washington, 1973.
5) Bruce Terris, "US. Government Aid in the
6) "Litton Maps Amazon" (The Oil Daily, October
16, 1972); also, "Semi-Controlled SLAR Mosaics
for Project Radam," by Rogerio C. de Godoy,
Brazilian Ministry of Mines and Energy, and Jan
W. van Roessel, Earth Satellite Corporation,
7) "Cats Slice Out a Highway in the Jungle"
(Business Week, January 8, 1972); also, "Camar-
go Dreams of Amazonian Contracts" (The
Economist, September 2, 1972).
8) "Cats Slice Out a Highway in the Jungle."
9) "Brazilian Mining-a Resume" (Brazilian Busi-
ness, July 1972); also, Max G. White, "A Round-
up of 21 Mineral Exploration Programs in Brazil"
(Engineering and Mining Journal, May 1973).
10) Janice H. Hopper (editor), Indians of Brazil in
the Twentieth Century (Washington, 1967),map
of Tocantins-Xingu Culture Area, page 30.
11) Janice H. Hopper, map of North Amazon Culture
Area, page 5.
12) Janice H. Hopper, map of North Amazon Culture
Area, page 5.
13) Janice H. Hopper, map of Guapore Culture Area,
page 17; also, "Leasing Away Indian Lives"
(Brazilian Information Bulletin, Summer 1974).
14) "The Carajas Iron Ore Project A Boost to
Amazon Development" (Brazilian Business,
August 1972).
15) "Money Flows Into the Amazon System" (Latin
American Economic Report, Andean Times,
November 1973).
16) "Brazil: Let Them Eat Minerals" (NACLA's

Latin America and Empire Report, April 1973).
17) "Rondonia, Capital do Estanho" (Visao, August
28, 1972).
18) Bruce Terris, "U.S. Government Aid in the
19) OPIC private internal document, "Cumulative
Report of All Political Risk Investment Insurance
Issued Since The Beginning of the Program in
1948 Through June 30, 1971," Washington, D.C.
20) See: footnote six above.
21) Max G. White, "A Roundup of 21 Mineral Ex-
ploration Programs in Brazil."
22) "D. K. Ludwig Plans to Harvest a Jungle"
(Business Week, July 31, 1971).
23) "The King Ranch South of the Border"
(Fortune, July 1969); also, "Deltec" (Brazilian
Information Bulletin, Winter 1974).
24) "VW Adding Cattle to Beetles in Brazil" (New
York Times, July 25, 1974).
25) "Suddenly It's Mafiana in Latin America"
(Fortune, August 1974).
26) Bishop of Sao Felix, Uma igreja da Amazonia em
conflito com o latifundio e a marginalizacao
social (Mato Grosso, October 10, 1971); also,
Osny Duarte Pereira, A Trans-Amazonia: Pros e
Contras (Brazil, 1971).
27) Janice H. Hopper, map no. 3, Alto Paru Culture
Area ,page 9.
28) Report on "Tembe and Urubu-Kaapor Indians,"
World Council of Churches, Geneva 1972.
29) Janice H. Hopper, map of Tocantins-Xingu Cul-
ture Area, page 30.
30) Map quoted in footnote 29 above.
31) Bishop of Sao Felix report (see: footnote 26).
32) See Latin America (April 5, 1974); also, World
Bank press releases of September 23, 1967 and
December 21, 1972.
33) Bruce Terris, "U.S. Government Aid in the
34) Bruce Terris, "U.S. Government Aid in the
35)"Unloading Leftover Defoliants" (Christian Sci-
ence Monitor, April 28, 1973).
36) Norman Lewis, "Genocide" (The Sunday Times,
February 23, 1969).
37) William H. Ellett, "Pioneering the Amazon"
(Americas, October 1972).
38) John Melby, "Rubber River: An Account of the
Rise and Collapse of the Amazon Boom" (in
Hispanic American Historical Review, 1942).
39) Norman Lewis, "Genocide."
40) Darcy Ribeiro, "Indigenous Cultures and Lan-
guages of Brazil" (in Janice H. Hopper, editor,
page 100).
41) Janice H. Hopper, Culture Area Map of Tapajos-
Madeira, page 21.
42) See: "The Forest Resources of the Amazon
Valley" (unpublished report by Eugene P. Horn);



Bruce Terris, "U.S. Government Aid in the
Amazon"; "Georgia Pacific Shouts 'Timber-r-r' in
the Amazon Jungle" (advertisement, Wall Street
Journal, October 17, 1967).
43) Darcy Ribeiro, "Indigenous Cultures and Lan-
guages of Brazil," table V, page 110.
44) "Story of the Wycliffe Translators, Pacifying the
Last Frontiers" (NACLA's Latin America and
Empire Report, December 1973).
45) "What is the New Tribes Mission?", brochure of
New Tribes Mission, Woodworth, Wisconsin.
46) Major Olimpio Alves Machado, "Indian Guard
Trained in Brazil" (International Police Academy
Review, October 1970); also, Ben Muneta,
"Agent Exposes Secret Concentration Camp in
Crenaque Brazil" (Wassaja, November 1973).
47) "Brazilian Jungle Warfare Training Center"
(Brazilian Information Bulletin, March 1971).
Reported also in Miami Herald, May 21, 1970,
Los Angeles Times, February 3, 1970, and New
York Times, March 31, 1970.

48) See: "Tourist Era is Coming to Brazil's Exotic
Setting" (Los Angeles Times, July 22, 1973) and
"Amazon Beckons Tourist Who Has 'Seen Every-
thing' (Brazilian Bulletin, nd). Also promo-
tional literature of Amazon Explorers, Booth
American Shipping Corporation, and Lindblad
Travel, Inc.
49) "A Wild Plan for South America's Wilds"
(Fortune, December 1967), and "Flying Think
Tank Over the Amazon" (NACLA's Latin
America and Empire Report, October 1969).
50) Richard Evans Shultes, "From Witch Doctor to
Modem Medicine: Searching the American Trop-
ics for Potentially New Medicinal Plants" (in
Arnoldia, September 1972).
51) Janice H. Hopper (editor), Indians of Brazil in
the Twentieth Century (Institute for Cross-
Cultural Research, 1967).
52) "Declaration of Brasilia," document published by
VIIth Inter-American Indianist Congress, Brasilia,
August 1972.

"Caterpillar Tractor Co. is cleaning up on Brazil's massive road building
program, and, in particular, on the Trans-Amazon Highway that will
eventually stretch 3,100 miles from eastern Brazil to the Peruvian border. In
just two years, Caterpillar has sold 770 pieces of machinery worth $47
million to the Brazilian army's engineer corps and to the seven private
construction companies that are building the road."
-"Cats Slice Out a Highway in the Jungle,"
Business Week,
January 8, 1972.

"Big business is moving into the backlands. In the Brazilian Mato Grosso
between two tributaries of the Amazon, the Italian conglomerate Liquigas is
carving out a 1.4 million acre ranch. Only a few charred tree trunks remain
after the jungle is slashed and burned, and the land is seeded in hardy native
grasses. ... As part of an ingenious scheme for eliminating middlemen,
Liquigas is building an airstrip in the jungle big enough to take chartered
707's. The company will slaughter on the ranch, package the meat in
supermarket cuts with the price stamped on in lire, and fly it direct to Italy,
letting nature do the chilling at 30,000 feet."
-Richard Armstrong,
"Suddenly It's Mafiana in Latin America,"
Fortune, August 1974.


A. International Reports:

International Committee of the Red Cross, Report of the ICRC Medical
Mission to the Brazilian Amazon Region, Geneva, 1970.
Primitive People's Fund / Survival International, Report of a Visit to the
Indians of Brazil, 1971.
Aborigines Protection Society, Tribes of the Amazon Basin in Brazil,
1972, London, Charles Knight & Co. Ltd., 1973.

B. Recent Books:

Cowell, Adrian, The Tribe That Hides From Man, New York, Stein and
Day Publishers, 1974.
Hanbury-Tenison, Robin, The Indians of Brazil; A Question of Survival,
London, Angus & Robertson, 1973.
Villas Boas, Orlando and Claudio, Xingu; The Indians, Their My ths, New
York, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1973.
World Council of Churches, The Situation of the Indian in South
America, Geneva, 1972.

C. Recent Articles

Brazilian Information Bulletin, "Riding Over the Indians of Brazil,"
Berkeley, Winter 1974.
Brazilian Information Bulletin, "Leasing Away Indian Lives," Berkeley,
Summer 1974.
Brazilian Information Bulletin, "Cattle on Indian Lands," Berkeley, Fall
Brooks, Edwin, "The Brazilian Road to Ethnicide," Contemporary
Review, May 1974.
Cowell, Adrian, "Even if the Indians are Going to Die," London
Observer, June 20, 1971.
Davis, Shelton, "Custer is Alive and He Lives in Brazil," The Indian
Historian, San Francisco_Winter 1973.
Fuerst, Rene, "Bibliography of the Indigenous Problem and Policy of
the Brazilian Amazon Region (1957-1972)," Copenhagen/Geneva,
Amazind/IWGIA Document, 1972.
Janqueira, Carmen, "The Brazilian Indigenous Problem and Policy: The
Example of the Xingu National Park," Copenhagen, IWGIA document,
Laraque, Marie-Helene, "The Human Costs of 'Development' The
Indians of Brazil, 1972," in Third World Women, 1972.
Moynahan, Brian, "Brazil: The Big Carve Up," in The Sunday Times
Magazine, London, October 7, 1973.
Wagley, Charles, "The Road of the Brazilian Indians," Focus, Spring



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