The Oka Face Down
The Oka Crisis, a land dispute between the Mohawk nation and the town of Oka, Quebec in 1990, provided Canada with a series of most iconic photos in her history. It also resulted in three deaths, and would be the first of a number of violent conflicts between Indigenous people and the Canadian Government in the late 20th century.
The photo taken by Shaney Komulainen of Pte. Patrick Cloutier, a perimeter sentry standing his ground against the verbal abuse of Mohawk Warrior Brad Larocque, a University of Saskatchewan economics student was one of the most iconic Canadian pictures. Shaney noted, “I was only 27 years old. I was painting the walls in my new apartment when I heard what was happening.” She, along with many other journalists and photographers, quickly traveled to the area. She “snuck through the woods” to the disputed area at the Sacred Pines and “was faced with the hostile showdown between soldiers and natives.”