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Enskat Kenraken Ronkwe

Caledonia problem didnt arise overnight

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In this thread id like to discuss what level of awareness about Native Issues are being taught in schools today. And the level of education any one of us received growing up. In any of the Provincial school systems. I attended most of my primary school education in Simcoe County - In Grade 8 we did a unit on Native studies which consisted of a basic rundown on how the Native People provided settlers with the means to survive in this climate, followed by a mock-native banquet with some sad appoximations to corn soup and pemmican. ( nibblets and beef jerky )

Caledonia problem didn't arise overnight

FP/Drum Staff

First Perspective: http://www.firstperspective.ca

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Edited by Greg

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What I find even more astonishing is that it was the Federal government that wanted the court case switched from litigation to negotiation back in 1995. Why would they do such a thing when the Feds knew about the 1841 "sale" and all the other documents that have been popping up suggesting that the land in question was a done deal.

If the Feds were so certain that things were in their favour, they would have pressed on with the court case and hammered the Six Nations...

but they didn't. they know that there is far more involved that what the public knows, and the public is being fed with more misinformation on a daily basis.

About the only "good" thing that came out of the blockade was that we truly got to see the depth of hatred Canadians have for Native people. This should be a wake up call for all those people in our communities who keep saying that we need to work with non-natives.

Bull crap. we need to protect ourselves from these people. That is what is clear.

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This is why I wish there were more education of Native studies.

The treaties are a part of Candian History, but i dont think most school boards look at it that way.

Which is why i started this thread - to find out what level of education is being provided in schools about the history of Canada and how it was built.

Also im curious as to how many people studied the Native perspective along with the Canadian history I think is mandatory regarding the English and the French.

AND i suppose thirdly - How much was known before Caledonia hit the papers, and if anyone has learned more about the history involved in the dispute. The developers knew the history of litigation regarding the land - they went in with eyes open. so my sympathy for them is severely limited. I wonder if there were more education in previous generations about the history of the land - would it have affected how things progressed? and how people perceive the Native people pursuing their rights?

What I find even more astonishing is that it was the Federal government that wanted the court case switched from litigation to negotiation back in 1995. Why would they do such a thing when the Feds knew about the 1841 "sale" and all the other documents that have been popping up suggesting that the land in question was a done deal.

If the Feds were so certain that things were in their favour, they would have pressed on with the court case and hammered the Six Nations...

but they didn't. they know that there is far more involved that what the public knows, and the public is being fed with more misinformation on a daily basis.

About the only "good" thing that came out of the blockade was that we truly got to see the depth of hatred Canadians have for Native people. This should be a wake up call for all those people in our communities who keep saying that we need to work with non-natives.

Bull crap. we need to protect ourselves from these people. That is what is clear.

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A fundamental error that people make in trying to address these types of scenarios is that they look at it as if it were a Political problem. Hence they look for Political solutions.

Only when its correctly identified as a human nature issue, can a solution be found.

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Can you elaborate more on your point of view?

I think the situation encompasses more than just a single aspect - depending on where youre going with the human nature argument in relation to Native Land Reclaimations - i may agree with you - fear of the unknown - fight or flee response when under stress etc

Politics has played a role in the dispute, being that the signing of treaties was between two seperate governing bodies; The Canadian Government and The Six Nations Confederacy.

In this thread id like to discuss the problem of education. How knowing all the correct historical facts beforehand might have reduced friction and promoted some understanding of WHY the people are present at the Reclaimation Site in Caledonia - and others sites Natione wide.

What did you know of the situation before all the media attention?

A fundamental error that people make in trying to address these types of scenarios is that they look at it as if it were a Political problem. Hence they look for Political solutions.

Only when its correctly identified as a human nature issue, can a solution be found.

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"we did a unit on Native studies which consisted of a basic rundown on how the Native People provided settlers with the means to survive in this climate, followed by a mock-native banquet with some sad appoximations to corn soup and pemmican. ( nibblets and beef jerky )"

I remember the same superficial lessons and representative meal in elementary school.

Our education of native history was not more eleborate than that.

Mind you, I remember our entire Canadian history lessons being very superficial -- not just dealing with Native affairs.

I do not believe that the history of New France and New England are filled with events that instill much pride. There is a lot more ugliness than we would ever know. If elementary history lessons told the whole truth and nothing but the truth, it would be very difficult to see young people say they were proud to be Canadian.

Mind you, I believe most countries (except for maybe Tibet) deal with the same issue of filtering out ugly aspects of their history.

"In this thread id like to discuss the problem of education.

How knowing all the correct historical facts beforehand might have reduced friction and promoted some understanding of WHY the people are present at the Reclaimation Site in Caledonia - and others sites Natione wide.

What did you know of the situation before all the media attention?"

I think it is impossible to get Canadians to ever understand "all the correct historical facts" over Native history. I do not believe Canadians care. Also, you would really have to throw out all of the history books.

I never knew anything about Caledonia until the Natives put up the recent blockade. Natives throughout the country should do the same sort of thing to defend their rights and their land. I think Canadians will have to learn the hard way.

Never give up fighting because I believe it is the most efficient education campaign for Canadians.

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I never knew anything about Caledonia until the Natives put up the recent blockade. Natives throughout the country should do the same sort of thing to defend their rights and their land. I think Canadians will have to learn the hard way.
The problems in native communities are not going to be solved by creating a bunch of mini apartheid states that can only exist if they are funded by taxpayers living and working in urban Canada. Insisting on race based rights will ultimately lead to more violence and discord. There only solution that will work is one that treats everyone Canadian equally no matter what their race happens to be.

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I never knew anything about Caledonia until the Natives put up the recent blockade. Natives throughout the country should do the same sort of thing to defend their rights and their land. I think Canadians will have to learn the hard way.
The problems in native communities are not going to be solved by creating a bunch of mini apartheid states that can only exist if they are funded by taxpayers living and working in urban Canada. Insisting on race based rights will ultimately lead to more violence and discord. There only solution that will work is one that treats everyone Canadian equally no matter what their race happens to be.

Quoted For Truth.

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Do you have anything relevant to add in accordance with the subject of this thread? - Which is education and your personal experience with Native Studies in the school system.

But i will briefly respond without reiterating all that was said in a previous closed thread, then hopefully get back to the original subject of the thread.

Native people do not want segregation as you imply. What I beleive they do want is the agreements they entered into to be honoured, and their Culture and Society recognised as distinct - therefore protected and preserved for future generations. ( sounds a lot like the deal going on in Quebec ) Canada is a Great Multi-Cultural Nation, and I for one love the variety this brings ( languages, food , customs ) I would never want any cultural group to totally assimilate into a nouveau Canadian society because of all the good things we would be missing out on. So if treating everyone equally means erasing all that makes them distinct - im not for it.

Will you tell us about any Native studies you had while in school?

I never knew anything about Caledonia until the Natives put up the recent blockade. Natives throughout the country should do the same sort of thing to defend their rights and their land. I think Canadians will have to learn the hard way.
The problems in native communities are not going to be solved by creating a bunch of mini apartheid states that can only exist if they are funded by taxpayers living and working in urban Canada. Insisting on race based rights will ultimately lead to more violence and discord. There only solution that will work is one that treats everyone Canadian equally no matter what their race happens to be.

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Thank You for the reply Charles

My early Canadian history was all learning about Upper and Lower Canada and the road to confederation. The only mention of Native peoples was during the lessons on the Hudsons Bay Company and the fur trade.

I know that all of the history in forming the nation was not all happy days, but i do feel that the history is valid - perhaps not for the younger students right away - but definitely at the Highschool level. Adding a module into the introductory sociology courses ( they go by many names - Man in Society etc ) would be a worthwhile addition. Keeping the truth from our children is going to do them a disservice. How does that go - Those who dont remember the past are doomed to repeat it. It would be my hope that being truthful and open about past events will be an enormous source of strength for Canadian People.

I think it is impossible to get Canadians to ever understand "all the correct historical facts" over Native history. I do not believe Canadians care. Also, you would really have to throw out all of the history books.

Sadly, we agree on that point. Whats scary is that the biggest roadblock would be the costs involved with replacing the textbooks.

But im hoping continued media presence will keep getting some truth of whats going on to the public so we dont backslide into silence and secret government deals.

Never give up fighting because I believe it is the most efficient education campaign for Canadians.

Now that is quoted for truth!

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I do not see the practicality of having a mandatory subject solely on Indian studies included in school curriculum of NON-ABORIGINALS. However, information/classes or seminars should be available for those who are interested on the subject.

I would rather more time be devoted to helping Canadian children/youth to hone the basics. A good number of our high schoolers and some college students could hardly even spell! Spend education time for acquiring and improving practical skills needed for them to be able to compete world-wide.

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Betsy - youve missed the point here.

Natives were involved in the building of this country and the history books dont reflect that. Why should they be excluded from a class about Canadian History? They were there.... but the only mentions taught in our schools are about teaching europeans about surviving on the land and trading furs. Native people had as much or more to do with Canadian History as the French settlers did - being it was their land and all....

what is mandatory in our schools? --- French Language Study.

I am not French - but study of French impact on Canadian History, as well as language study is mandatory.

The practicality would be in teaching the WHOLE history, not just sections of it. Even if it casts some events in a not so favourable light. Give the opportunity through education for the individual to decide for themselves - instead of limiting their exposure. My highschool even had an elective course to do with the worlds religions because students expressed an interest. I would love to conduct a survey in our schools to guage the level of interest in Native Studies.

Like i said in my previous post - I suggested this course of study be made available at the high school level as PART of a History or Sociology curriculum. When i went to High School - I chose the majority of my subjects with the exceptin of the 16 mandatory courses in order to get my OSSD. But definitely i think starting to teach the full history to all young people should be started as early as possible.

As far as the rest of your post regarding academics - the failure of the school system to instill even the basics of education is way off topic to this thread.

You could start a new thread " Canadian Education System - Whats Sticking? - Whats Not? " to discuss that issue - I for one, will contribute to it.

I do not see the practicality of having a mandatory subject solely on Indian studies included in school curriculum of NON-ABORIGINALS. However, information/classes or seminars should be available for those who are interested on the subject.

I would rather more time be devoted to helping Canadian children/youth to hone the basics. A good number of our high schoolers and some college students could hardly even spell! Spend education time for acquiring and improving practical skills needed for them to be able to compete world-wide.

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I have avoided the whole Caledonia topic here since it began in several threads.

My reason for doing so is simple, I don't think I know enough to make an intelligent contribution to the topic.

I do have a few opinions, but they had already been voiced by others, and I see no reason to weigh in with a simple "I agree with (your name here. LOL)".

But in this thread, well, suffice to say I WILL weigh in........onward.....

I would partially agree that more Native information should be included in the curriculum, but not necessarily as a stand-alone course, at least not in primary school.

In my primary-school days, which ended in '74, there was some native content in our history course.

But it was not in depth to any degree.

The only "Native" things that stand out in my mind from those days are Champlain being the first European to shoot an "Indian" (He had been befriended by one tribe of Natives, and the one he shot was apparently from a rival tribe. The quotations marks around the word "indian" are there because that's the word we used at that time) thereby igniting some white-native hostility.

The other major thing that comes to mind is the torture and killing of St Jean de Brebeuf (SP??), and the other missionaries who are honored in the Martyrs' Shrine in Midland(?). Having attended a Catholic school, we had a class trip to the shrine.

Aside from those events, and some glossing over of the Natives dealings with the Hudson Bay Company, little else comes to mind from primary school.

In high school there was a bit more; Louis Rheal, Natives vs Viking setllers, and a few other tidbits.

But to the best of my recollection, there was not a whole lot of Native related information covered in history classes.

Which brings me back to my opening statement; While I don't necessarily think we need a separate Native-Studies course, I think the mandatory history classes should indeed include a LOT more information on the history of Natives in the formation and evolution of Canada. This should include information on treaty agreements and so forth. It would definitely equip students to better understand these sorts of issues, as well as giving a more balanced view of our history, and the role Natives played.

To address BETSY's post, your comment about high-schoolers not being able to spell...

This has been a pet peeve of mine for years. And it's beyond high-schoolers. As long as 15 years ago I've seen university students whose spelling is absolutely atrocious. Disgusting, when you think about it.

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Can you elaborate more on your point of view?

I think the situation encompasses more than just a single aspect - depending on where youre going with the human nature argument in relation to Native Land Reclaimations - i may agree with you - fear of the unknown - fight or flee response when under stress etc

Politics has played a role in the dispute, being that the signing of treaties was between two seperate governing bodies; The Canadian Government and The Six Nations Confederacy.

The problem here is that you are trying use use the catalyst rising out of CALEDONia as an opportunity to solve "native land issues" (both admirable and logical). Your first pass at a solution is "education". Fair enough but...

In order to find the real solution you have to abstract caledonIA and see how many other situations fall into the same pattern. At that point a painfully obvious paradigm will emerge:

Human nature when expressed through political bodies is inherently unreasonable. The amount of that unreasonableness is directly proportionate to the disparity in power between the political bodies involved.

***

Another perspective... start with Caledonia vs 6 Nations. Abstract that to City vs Rural. Then its game over for 6 nations. Because:

Cities are the primary unit of cultural currency that is recognized on the world stage. Canada has an international film festival and a professional baseball team because of the City. Because tract after tract after tract of Rural was consumed. The City will always win. Because we want more currency.

Because currency buys history.

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Believe it or not, I remember about Pocahontas, the Wampum belt, as part of American History (taught in grade school during my time in the Philippines). In the Philippines! :D

Can't recall accurately but I think we also touched the early settlers/pilgrims' encounter with the natives.

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Believe it or not, I remember about Pocahontas, the Wampum belt, as part of American History (taught in grade school during my time in the Philippines). In the Philippines! :D

Can't recall accurately but I think we also touched the early settlers/pilgrims' encounter with the natives.

I was thinking about something similar for Canada.

Everyone wants a voice and a presence. (the following existing completely outside of land/governance/Quality of Life issues which should be moved ahead regardless)

Short term:

Incorporate a real ceremonial native presence during federal and provincial ceremonies ( I'm just talking off the top of my head but perhaps a representative of native people in Canada and a representative of the Algonquin could do something together when a new government takes office in Ottawa)

(anticipated resistance shouldn't be too big)

Medium term:

Reassign a NATIONAL holiday or make a new one that specifically honours native people's and their heritage. Labour Day is a holiday with great positioning in the year, but with no ceremonial manifestation associated with it other than to be outdoors so that would be the immediate thing that would come to mind.

This would include ceremonies wherever appropriate.

(resistance ? hard to anticipate but shouldn't be too large)

Both of these would serve to dramatically increase the presence of native people in the mind's eye of fellow canadians.

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Short term:

Incorporate a real ceremonial native presence during federal and provincial ceremonies ( I'm just talking off the top of my head but perhaps a representative of native people in Canada and a representative of the Algonquin could do something together when a new government takes office in Ottawa)

(anticipated resistance shouldn't be too big)

Are you kidding me? The last thing we need is more ceremony. Do we need a representative from the Black, Chinese, Japanese, German and every other ethnicity that has been discriminated against in our history too?

This is a terribly ridiculous idea and sets a dangerous precedent.

Medium term:

Reassign a NATIONAL holiday or make a new one that specifically honours native people's and their heritage. Labour Day is a holiday with great positioning in the year, but with no ceremonial manifestation associated with it other than to be outdoors so that would be the immediate thing that would come to mind.

This would include ceremonies wherever appropriate.

(resistance ? hard to anticipate but shouldn't be too large)

Both of these would serve to dramatically increase the presence of native people in the mind's eye of fellow canadians.

Well firstly, Labour day is kind of important to the labour movement, which is alot bigger than the few Indians we have in Canada. If you really insist on Indian day, then have it replace some old traditional English holiday, like... Victoria Day! Victoria is dead isn't she? Canada is also short a holiday from most of the other western nations, so we could just bring it in as an extra.

Of all holidays... labour day... why? Civic Holiday is another useless holiday with no actual value.

--

This idea that we all need to learn more about Indians is just profoundly misguided. I've taken an Indian Affairs course, and all it's shown me is that Indians in Canada have no excuse for their poverty, and further financial support of these people is just a waste of our money and likely to worsen their situation.

What is with everyone lately, wishing to go back to the days of racism, giving one race privledged status above all others? What is seriously so great about the Indians... to me they seem kind of like a failed society. Why dwell on failures that will never be fixed with the current stigma on the issue (what you want to increase knowledge of in schools) when we have so many success stories of succesful integration of others.

--

Showing kids that Indians were once a proud culture with all these traditions and supposedly nations is just counter-productive. It will give all those poor kids a feeling of guilt, even though their mom's and dad's have been financially supporting these people for their entire tax paying lives.

If you insist on education on aboriginal issues, I'd glad see one that highlights the massive problems of unemployment, alcoholism, drug abuse and urban Indian gangs. One that shows that they are the most socially subsidized group in Canada and still can't clean up their act. One that shows their self-governance rallying cry would really be a Canadian funded soverign state.

The only real solution is dismemberment of the Department of Indian Affairs and full integration. No more special benefits based on your race.

What the hell is so hard to understand about this, I thought you Liberals were against racism and apartheid?

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Are you kidding me? The last thing we need is more ceremony. Do we need a representative from the Black, Chinese, Japanese, German and every other ethnicity that has been discriminated against in our history too?

This is a terribly ridiculous idea and sets a dangerous precedent.

No it can't be, please not the Slippery Slope arguement!

Ultimately you miss the point of my post.

Canada exists because 'Kanada' doesn't.

That is a sacrifice of an order of magnitude that is difficult to conceive. To look at it any otherway misunderstands history. That sacrifice should be honoured and recognized because it is the foundation upon which we have built our nation.

It doesn't HURT our culture to acknowledge this. It enhances it.

We send representatives off to Dday ceremonies, we have a Governor General, we have Canada Day. Ceremony is the tool culture uses to acknowledge historical contributions to the world and to ourselves. Regardless of their literal numbers now or in the past, Native people's contribution through sacrifice supercedes many other ceremonial acknowledgements.

And i'm pretty sure we live on a planet that understands the importance of sacrifice... even if you don't believe in Jesus :)

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How have the Indians contributed to society in Canada? Any real examples?

If your going to say they fought along side us in the Great Wars, then it's just as justified to have a Chinese or Black or even White day. I really don't see what makes them so special compared to all the other races that built Canada that they deserve all this extra treatment.

Sounds like appeasement to me.

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The difference is that they were here first, hence the appellation " Native " and then entered into agreements in order to preserve their culture and some of their lands.

Im not going to list the accompishments of Individual Native people - that isnt the scope of this thread. But that is an excellent topic to begin a new thread on! Great idea Geoffrey!!!

" The Individual Accomplishments of Native People " ( you can use that :) )

but here is a short snippet - from an article -

( http://www.umanitoba.ca/cm/cmarchive/vol20...notindians.html )

Im providing this link with the hope that somebody may begin reasearching on their own - poke around... see what you can find out :)

Generalizing about Native cultures must be avoided. Implying that all "Indians" are alike obscures the vast diversity of languages, arts, ceremonies, life-styles, and social and political structures among the various Native groups, both in the past and in the present. Although there may be similarities among the groups, there are also many distinguishable elements. For example, the language spoken by the Cree is markedly different from that of the Dakota. The ceremonial practices exhibited by the Eastern Woodland nations differ from those of the West Coast nations, as does their art work.

Again, off topic BUT - Canada is a multi-cultural Nation ( like it or not )- and I for one would love more exposure to the different cultures that make up this country, and the world over. Dedicating a day of the year to celebrate any one cultures; art, history, customs, food etc is an absolutely excellent idea and an opportunity that a lot of Canadians would jump at :) Another Good suggestion - Way to go, geoffrey!!

Yet AGAIN off topic, but - A signed legal document ( aka a " treaty " ) does not equate to appeasment. It is a binding agreement between two parties.

geoffrey - can you please stick to postings directly relevant to the thread, which is primarily education of our young people about Native History. thank you.

How have the Indians contributed to society in Canada? Any real examples?

If your going to say they fought along side us in the Great Wars, then it's just as justified to have a Chinese or Black or even White day. I really don't see what makes them so special compared to all the other races that built Canada that they deserve all this extra treatment.

Sounds like appeasement to me.

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Betsy - your post made me remember my own lessons on American History.

Which got me thinking -

Why would any Canadian School teach the histories of another nation before its own?

I am all for replacing some or all of the American History lessons with the more Canadian relevant teaching of Native Studies. So if room in the cirriculum has to be made....

Before anybody flies off the handle here *LOL* How many American schools teach Canadian History?

I mean besides the American version of the War of 1812 :)

Believe it or not, I remember about Pocahontas, the Wampum belt, as part of American History (taught in grade school during my time in the Philippines). In the Philippines! :D

Can't recall accurately but I think we also touched the early settlers/pilgrims' encounter with the natives.

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The Canadian authorities have always refused to deal with us legally, on a nation?to?nation basis, the way the British did. Canadian officials want to keep the colonization process going. That's why land claims have always been stalled.

Simply put, they stole our land and don't want to give it back.

From an article on your link.

I don't know what you will think of my opion however, I think it is just and true. I think that Canada should honor their agreements, whatever they were and, whatever it takes. Then treat natives like they were their own nations. If those nations wish roads to and from their properties, then they can pay for them in the form of taxes to the Canadian government. If they wish to have an airport then they can pay for overflights. If they wish to make cigarettes they can and, if they wish to sell them they can and the Canadian govenment can or can not post borg=der guards there to stop the sales from exiting the lands.

In short, we are all sick of it same as the natives. We made a deal and that deal sticks even if it is not to our advantage and we wish to change it. We didn't steal the land, we traded for it in a very underhanded way and now, are trying to get out of even that. I say, honor the agreements then, with no support trade and progress can be made with all parties knowing what they have and what they have not. Natives run out of money, well, sell some land or provide a service. Bad drinking water, sell something to buy a purifier with. Far as I'm concerned, natives are on their own once we give them what we said we would.

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The difference is that they were here first, hence the appellation " Native " and then entered into agreements in order to preserve their culture and some of their lands.

Oh c'mon, "we were here first", is not a valid argument.

All places have their own natives. We had the Aetas (and the Igorots) who had been here way before the Spaniards came. As far I know, they still live in the mountains and still practice their way of life, although some would sometimes venture to the towns and beg.

Entered into agreements based on the climes of that era!

As an example, if it was the culture then to fish for sustenance....then that was the agreement agreed upon.

To fish to feed. Not to have commercial fisheries!

If the agreements' purpose is to "preserve your culture"....then as far as housing goes, the government just need to provide you with tee-pees.

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