Tension, sense of unease, raising fears, ground zero and a flood of journalese

Nothing like a battle between American Indians and oil billionaires to set off a flood of journalese. Take this example, in the Boston Globe, Nov. 28, 2016, page one story about protests that the Dakota Access Pipeline will threaten water supplies and cross sacred grounds near the Standing Rock Reservation. “As temperatures continue to dip and tension between protesters and local law enforcement intensifies, a sense of unease has fallen on the Oceti Sakowin camp, a sprawling, expansive stretch of land that is near the reservation and that has served as ground zero for the pipeline protests. On Friday, the Standing Rock Sioux’s chairman revealed the Army Corps of Engineers would be closing the camp on Dec. 5, raising the possibility of a tense showdown between protesters — who have since vowed not to leave — and whoever might seek to remove them.”

None of the stories I have read about the controversy explain why the pipeline can’t skirt the controversial land, and if it can, how much extra would it cost the $3.8 billion, 1,170-mile project. Guess it’s a job for a Google search.

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