United States Respects Indian Tribes' Right to Self-Determination
Indian tribes retain unique sovereign status as "domestic dependent nations". By Peggy B. Hu and Jeffrey Thomas. America. gov, November 6, 2006.
Many people are puzzled when they hear the . president use such phrases as “government-to-government basis with tribal governments,” “tribal sovereignty” or “self-determination” for American Indians. Isn’t the United States “one nation ... indivisible," as the Pledge of Allegiance says?
The answer is more interesting than a simple “yes” or “no.” According to the . Department of Justice's Office of Tribal Justice, American Indian tribes are considered "domestic dependent nations" within the United States. As such, they retain sovereign powers over their members and territory except where such powers specifically have been modified by . law. American Indians are more than members of a racial minority group in the United States; they are indigenous people of the Americas with a status akin to dual citizenship .