Bears Ears National Monument is a United States national monument located in San Juan County in southeastern Utah. It was established by President Barack Obama by presidential proclamation on December 28, 2016. The monument is named Bears Ears for a pair of buttes that rise to elevations over 8,900 feet (2,700 m) and 9,000 feet. The monument's original size was 1,351,849 acres, which was reduced 85% by President Donald Trump on December 4, 2017 - an act subsequently challenged as illegal. The monument protects the public lands surrounding the Bears Ears, plus the Indian Creek corridor rock climbing area. The Native names for the buttes have the same meaning in each of the languages represented in the region. The area is closely tied to the creation story and mythology of all the existing native tribes here. In early April 2021, Deb Haaland, the first Native American Secretary of the Interior Department, began the onsite review process on the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante monuments, which President Joe Biden had called for in an executive order signed on his first day in office.
Bears Ears has been regularly looted of ancient Indian artifacts and vandalized for many years. One of the early catalysts for securing monument status for Bears Ears was the June 10, 2009 joint raid called Operation Cerberus Action conducted by FBI and U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) agents—"the nation’s largest investigation of archaeological and cultural artifact thefts"— in Blanding, a small town on Bears Ears eastern boundary. Following a two-year federal investigation and the indictment of 24 people for stealing, receiving or trying to sell Native American artifacts from the hundreds of archaeological sites in the area, this incident became an "early flashpoint in the struggle over control of public lands in the western United States
(Credit to Wikipedia for this background)