Broken Rainbow (1985) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • Examines the history leading to the passage of P.L. 93-531, in 1974, to force the relocation of 10,000 Diné (Navajo) from Hopi land. Behind the scenes, argues the film, it was all about mining rights as Peabody Coal used the Hopi tribal council through its attorney, John Boyden, to evict Diné families who had lived in peace with Hopi people for centuries. As context, the film discusses the Long Walk, arbitrary reservation boundaries, the advent of Indian schools, the formation of compliant tribal councils, excavation contracts for coal, uranium, oil and natural gas that paid impoverished tribes pennies on the dollar, and the apologetics of elected officials, including Mo Udall.

  • In 1983, President Ronald Reagan's controversial Secretary of the Interior James Watt sold coal leases on federal land in New Mexico and Arizona to developers for exploration and mining. Thousands of members of the Navajo tribe lived on this land, part of their ancestral homeland, and were forcibly relocated away from their homes. This documentary examines this and other injustices in the U.S./Navajo relationship.

  • Documentary chronicling the government relocation of 10,000 Navajo Indians in Arizona.


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