Many Native American groups are upset that the U.S. government tied the name of Geronimo with Osama bin Laden. The special forces raid on Sunday to take down bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan was code-named Operation Geronimo. Osama bin Laden himself was referred to as Geronimo when the signal was sent as to bin Laden′s death, “Geronimo E-KIA”, or Enemy Killed In Action. Indian groups around the country are displeased that the famous Apache leader was misused by the Obama administration in this fashion.

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The real Geronimo led many a battle against U.S. and Mexican army units in the early 1880s. He finally surrendered to the United States in 1886 and then lived at Fort Sill, Oklahoma until his death in 1909 from pneumonia. In 2008, the Apache nation filed a lawsuit against the Yale fraternity group known as Skull and Bones, which allegedly robbed some of Geronimo′s bones and his skull back in 1918. The lawsuit was dismissed in Federal courts in 2010. Skull and Bones is often associated with the Central Intelligence Agency, and it was the CIA that ran the mission Sunday to kill Osama bin Laden.

The U.S. military has used the name Geronimo before, but in connection with courage. During World War 2, American paratroopers often would call out “Geronimo” as they jumped out of their airplanes over enemy territory. Loretta Tuell of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee spoke yesterday that it was inappropriate to link Geronomi with Osama bin Laden. She described the Apache leader as “one of the greatest Native American heroes.” Indeed, Geronimo was compelled to make war only after a unit of Mexican soldiers attacked his tribe′s encampment in 1858, killing his wife, his mother and his three children. The U.S. Cavalry became involved as the Apache often fled Mexico and crossed into America.

There is no word as of yet from the Obama administration, nor the CIA in regards to the outcry of Native Americans for connecting the good name of Geronimo with Osama bin Laden. The raid on Sunday to kill bin Laden was code-named Operation Geronimo. The actual signal announcing bin Laden′s death was “Geronimo E-KIA”, meaning Enemy Killed In Action. Yesterday, the White House had to back-pedal earlier versions of the raid saying that Osama bin Laden was unarmed when he was shot and killed. Some legal experts say that this constitutes as an “extra judicial killing”.

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