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EZLN

Part One: A DECLARATION… FOR LIFE

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Part One: A DECLARATION…

FOR LIFE

 

January 1st, 2021

TO THE PEOPLES OF THE WORLD:

TO PEOPLE FIGHTING IN EUROPE:

BROTHERS, SISTERS AND COMPAÑER@S:

During these previous months, we have established contact between us by various means. We are women, lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender, transvestites, transsexuals, intersex, queer and more, men, groups, collectives, associations, organizations, social movements, indigenous peoples, neighbourhood associations, communities and a long etcetera that gives us identity.

We are differentiated and separated by lands, skies, mountains, valleys, steppes, jungles, deserts, oceans, lakes, rivers, streams, lagoons, races, cultures, languages, histories, ages, geographies, sexual and non-sexual identities, roots, borders, forms of organization, social classes, purchasing power, social prestige, fame, popularity, followers, likes, coins, educational level, ways of being, tasks, virtues, defects, pros, cons, buts, howevers, rivalries, enmities, conceptions, arguments, counterarguments, debates, disputes, complaints, accusations, contempts, phobias, philias, praises, repudiations, boos, applauses, divinities, demons, dogmas, heresies, likes, dislikes, ways, and a long etcetera that makes us different and, not infrequently, opposites.

Only very few things unite us:

That we make the pains of the earth our own: violence against women; persecution and contempt of those who are different in their affective, emotional, and sexual identity; annihilation of childhood; genocide against the native peoples; racism; militarism; exploitation; dispossession; the destruction of nature.

The understanding that a system is responsible for these pains. The executioner is an exploitative, patriarchal, pyramidal, racist, thievish and criminal system: capitalism.

The knowledge that it is not possible to reform this system, to educate it, to attenuate it, to soften it, to domesticate it, to humanize it.

The commitment to fight, everywhere and at all times – each and everyone on their own terrain – against this system until we destroy it completely. The survival of humanity depends on the destruction of capitalism. We do not surrender, we do not sell out, and we do not give up.

The certainty that the fight for humanity is global. Just as the ongoing destruction does not recognize borders, nationalities, flags, languages, cultures, races; so the fight for humanity is everywhere, all the time.

The conviction that there are many worlds that live and fight within the world. And that any pretence of homogeneity and hegemony threatens the essence of the human being: freedom. The equality of humanity lies in the respect for difference. In its diversity resides its likeness.

The understanding that what allows us to move forward is not the intention to impose our gaze, our steps, companies, paths and destinations. What allows us to move forward is the listening to and the observation of the Other that, distinct and different, has the same vocation of freedom and justice.

Due to these commonalities, and without abandoning our convictions or ceasing to be who we are, we have agreed:

First.- To carry out meetings, dialogues, exchanges of ideas, experiences, analyses and evaluations among those of us who are committed, from different conceptions and from different areas, to the struggle for life. Afterwards, each one will go their own way, or not. Looking and listening to the Other may or may not help us in our steps. But knowing what is different is also part of our struggle and our endeavour, of our humanity.

Second.- That these meetings and activities take place on the five continents. That,  regarding the European continent, they take place in the months of July, August, September and October of the year 2021, with the direct participation of a Mexican delegation integrated by the CNI-CIG, the Frente de Pueblos en Defensa del Agua y de la Tierra de Morelos, Puebla y Tlaxcala, and the EZLN. And, at later dates to be specified, we will support according to our possibilities the encounters to be carried out in Asia, Africa, Oceania and America.

Third.- To invite those who share the same concerns and similar struggles, all honest people and all those belows that rebel and resist in the many corners of the world, to join, contribute, support and participate in these meetings and activities; and to sign and make this statement FOR LIFE their own.

From one of the bridges of dignity that connect the five continents.

We.
Planet Earth.
January 1, 2021.

From the various, unequal, different, unlike, dissimilar, distant, and distinct
corners of the world (in art, science, and struggle in resistance and rebellion):

(Continuar leyendo…)

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EZLN

Part Two: The Tavern

Part Two: The Tavern

The calendar? Now. The geography? Any corner of the world.

You don’t quite know why, but you are walking hand in hand with a little girl. You are about to ask her where you are going when you pass in front of a huge tavern. It has a large illuminated sign like a movie theater marquee that reads: “History with a capital ‘H’: Café-bar” and below that, “No women, children, indigenous people, unemployed, people of other genders [otroas], elderly persons, migrants, or other useless people allowed.” A white hand has added: “In this place, Black Lives do not matter[i].” A male hand has scrawled, “Women allowed if they act like men.” Outside the doors of the establishment are heaped cadavers of women of all ages and, judging by their tattered clothes, of all social classes, too. You and the little girl pause, resigned. You peek in the door and see a commotion of men and women, all with masculine mannerisms. A man is standing on the bar with a baseball bat, swinging it threateningly in all directions. The crowd inside is clearly divided: one side is applauding while the other side boos. All of them are drunk, flushed, with furious gazes and drool dripping down their chins.

A man whom you presume is the doorman approaches you and asks:

“You want to come in? You can choose whichever side you like. You want to cheer or boo? It doesn’t matter which you choose, we guarantee you’ll get a lot of followers, likes, thumbs up and applause. You’ll become famous if you come up with something clever, whether in favor or against. And even if you’re not very smart, all you have to do is be loud. It doesn’t matter whether what you say is true or false as long as you make a lot of noise.” 

You consider the offer. It sounds attractive, especially now that no one follows you, not even a dog.

Is it dangerous?” you ask timidly.

The bouncer reassures you: “Not at all, here impunity reigns. Look at the guy who’s up to bat. He says whatever stupid thing and some people applaud him while others criticize him with further idiocies. When he finishes, someone else will take their turn. I already told you that you don’t have to be smart. In fact, here intelligence is an obstacle. Come on in! This is how you forget about all the illnesses, the catastrophes, the misery, the government’s lies, and tomorrow itself. Here, reality doesn’t really matter. What matters is whatever is trendy today.”

You ask: “And what are they debating?”

Oh, any old thing. Both sides are focused on frivolities and superficialities. Creativity’s not their thing, if you know what I mean,” the bouncer responds as he shoots a fearful glance toward the top of the building.

(Continuar leyendo…)

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Subcomandante Insurgente Galeano

Part Three: The Mission

How Defensa Zapatista tried to explain Zapatismo’s mission and other happy reasonings to Esperanza  

“All right, I’m going to explain something very important to you. But don’t take notes—just keep it in your head. You might leave the notebook laying around anywhere, but you have to carry your head with you all the time.”

Defensa Zapatista paced back and forth, just like the late SupMarcos used to do when he was explaining something really important. Esperanza was sitting on a tree stump, over which she had wisely placed a piece of plastic tarp to cover the damp wood which was covered in moss, mushrooms, and dry twigs.

“You think we’re going to be able to see where the struggle will take us?” Defensa Zapatista blurted out, gesturing in no particular direction with her little hands.

Esperanza tried to think of how to answer, but it was clear Defensa Zapatista was asking a rhetorical question and wasn’t interested in an answer. She was asking a question that led to other questions. According to Defensa Zapatista, she was following the scientific method.

“The problem isn’t getting to the destination, but making the path. That is, if there is no path, one has to make it. That’s the only way,” she continued, brandishing a machete—who knows where she got that, I’m sure somebody somewhere is looking for it.

“So the thing is that the problem has changed—the most important thing now is the path. If there is no path to where you want to go, well then that’s your principal concern. So, what do we do if there’s no path to where we want to go?”

Esperanza responds confidently: “We wait until it stops raining so we don’t get wet making the path.”

No!” Defensa yells, throwing her hands up and clutching her head, ruining the hairdo her mom had spent a half hour fixing.

Esperanza hesitates and then tries again, “I know: we lie to Pedrito and tell him that there’s a bunch of candy where we want to go, but no way to get there, and whoever makes a path the fastest gets all the candy.”

“You think we’re going to ask the men? Hell no! We’re going to do it ourselves as the women that we are,”Defensa responds.

True,” Esperanza concedes, “plus maybe there will actually be chocolate there.”

Defensa continues, “But what if we get lost as we try to make the path?”

Esperanza responds promptly, “We yell for help? Set off some firecrackers or take the conch shell along so we can call the village to come rescue us?”

Defensa sees that Esperanza is taking the issue quite literally, and worse, getting the approval of everyone gathered around. The cat-dog, for example, is licking his lips imagining the pot of chocolates at the end of the rainbow; the one-eyed horse suspects that there also might be maize with salt and maybe another pot full of plastic bottles; and Calamidad is practicing the choreography designed by SupGaleano called “pas de chocolat,’ which consists of balancing rhinoceros-style over a large pot.

Elías Contreras, meanwhile, had been sharpening his machete on both sides since the very first question.

A little beyond him, an undefined being bearing extraordinary resemblance to a beetle and carrying a sign that reads “call me Ismael,” is debating Old Antonio over the advantages of stasis on dry land, arguing, “Yes indeed my dear Queequeg, no white whale goes near a port.” [i] The old indigenous Zapatista, involuntary teacher of the generation that rose up in arms in 1994, rolls a cigarette and listens attentively to the beetle’s arguments.

Defensa Zapatista assumes that she, just like science and art, is in the difficult position of being misunderstood, like a pas de deux without the embrace to facilitate the pirouettes or the support for a porté; like a film held prisoner in a can, waiting for a gaze to rescue it; like a port without a ship to dock there; like a cumbia awaiting hips to give it action and destination; like a concave Cigala without its convex[ii]; like Luz Casal on her way to meet the flor prometida[iii]; like Louis Lingg without the punk Bombs[iv]; like Panchito Varona looking behind a chord for a stolen April[v]; like a ska without a slam; like praline ice cream without a Sup to do it justice.

But Defensa being defense and also Zapatista, accepts none of this and, in resistance and rebellion, looks to Old Antonio for assistance.

“Storms respect no one; they hit both sea and land, sky and soil alike. Even the innards of the earth twist and turn with the actions of humans, plants, and animals. Neither color, size, nor ways matter,” Old Antonio says in a low voice.

Everyone falls silent, half out of respect and half out of terror.

Old Antonio continues: “Women and men seek to take shelter from wind, rain, and broken land, waiting for it to pass in order to see what is left. But the earth does more than that; it begins to prepare for what comes next, what comes after. In that process it begins to change; mother earth does not wait for the storm to pass in order to decide what to do, but rather begins to build long before. That is why the wisest ones say that the morning doesn’t just happen, doesn’t appear just like that, but that it lies in wait among the shadows and, for those who know where to look, in the cracks of the night. That is why when the men and women of maize plant their crops, they dream of tortilla, atole, pozol, tamale, and marquesote[vi]. Even though those things are not yet manifest, they know they will come and thus this is what guides their work. They see their field and its fruit before the seed has even touched the soil.”

“When the men and women of maize look at this world and its pain, they also see the world that must be created and they make a path to get there. They have three gazes: one for what came before; one for the present; and one for what is to come. That is how they know that what they are planting is a treasure: the gaze itself.”

Defensa agrees enthusiastically. She understands that Old Antonio understands the argument that she could not explain. Two generations distant in calendars and geographies build a bridge that both comes and goes… just like paths.

That’s right!” she almost shouts and looks fondly at the old man.

She adds, “If we already know where we want to go, that means we also know where we don’t want to go. So every step we take moves us toward one path and away from another. We haven’t gotten there yet, but the path we walk shows us what our destination will be. If we want to eat tamales, we’re not going to plant squash.”

The whole crowd makes an understandable gesture of disgust, imagining a horrible squash soup.

“We live out the storm however we know how, but we are already preparing what comes next. We prepare it now. That is why we have to take our word far and wide. It doesn’t matter if the person who said it originally isn’t there anymore; rather what matters is that the seed reaches fertile ground and grows. Our word must support others. That is our mission: to be a seed that looks for other seeds,” Defensa Zapatista declares, and looking at Esperanza asks, “Do you understand?”

Esperanza stands up and with all the solemnity she can muster at 9 years of age, responds:

Yes, of course. I have understood that we are all going to die miserably.”

But then she adds immediately, “But we’re going to make it worth it.”

Everyone applauds.

In order to reinforce Esperanza’s “make it worth it,” Old Antonio takes a bag of chocolate “kisses” out of his bag.

The cat-dog downs a good number of them in one gulp, though the one-eyed horse prefers to continue gnawing on its plastic bottle.

Elías Contreras, EZLN investigative commission, repeats in a low voice, “we’re going to make it worth it,” and his heart and thoughts go to brother Samir Flores and those who confront, with dignity as their only weapon, the loud-mouthed thief of water and life who hides behind the weapons of the overseer, who himself blabbers on and on to hide his blind obedience to the true Ruler, which is first, money, then more money, and in the end, still money.[vii] It is never justice, never freedom, and never, ever life.

The beetle begins to talk about how a chocolate bar kept him from dying on the Siberian steppes as he was traveling from the lands of Sami[viii]–where he sang the Yoik[ix]—in Selkup territory[x]to pay tribute to the Cedar, the tree of life. “I went to learn, that’s what journeys are for. There are resistances and rebellions that are no less important and heroic because they are far away,” he says as he uses his many legs to liberate a chocolate from its aluminum foil, applaud, and gulp down a portion of it, all at the same time.

Calamidad, for her part, has understood perfectly well what it means to think about what comes next and with her hands muddied with chocolate, exclaims enthusiastically, “vamos a jugar a las palomitas!”

-*-

From the Zapatista Center for Maritime-Terrestrial Training,

SupGaleano giving a workshop on “Internationalist Vomiting”
Mexico, December of 2020.

From the notebook of the Cat-Dog: The Treasure is the Other

 “Upon finishing, he looked at me slowly with his one eye and said, ‘I was waiting for you, Don Durito. Know that I am the last true, living pirate in the world. And I say “true” because now there are an infinite number of “pirates” in financial centers and great government palaces who steal, kill, destroy and loot, without ever touching any water save that of their bathtubs. Here is your mission (he hands me a dossier of old parchments): find the treasure and put it in a safe place. Now, pardon me, but I must die.’ And as he said those words, he let his head fall to the table. Yes, he was dead. The parrot took flight and went out through a window, saying, ‘The exile of Mytilene is dead, dead is the bastard son of Lesbos, dead the pride of the Aegean Sea.[xi] Open your nine doors, fearsome hell, for there the great Redbeard will rest. He has found the one who will follow in his footsteps, and the one who made of the ocean but a tear now sleeps. The pride of true Pirates will now sail with Black Shield.’ Below the window, the Swedish port of Gothenburg spread out, and, in the distance, a nyckelharpa[xii] was weeping . . .”

Don Durito of the Lacandón Jungle. October 1999.[xiii]

 Section: Three deliriums, two groups, and a rioter.

If we follow Admiral Maxo’s route, I think we’d arrive faster by walking over the Bering Strait:

Just try and stop us:

Motor is ready, now just missing… the boat?!

First crew:

Second crew:

We don’t have the boat yet, but we’ve got the guy who’ll lead the riot onboard:

 

[i] The first line of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. Ishmael is the narrator of the book. Queequeg is another character in the book.

[ii] “Concavo y convexo” (Concave and convex) is the title of a love song by Flamenco singer Diego el Cigala.

[iii] “Flor prometida” (Promised flower) is the title track of Spanish pop artist Luz Casal’s seventh studio album.

[iv] Louis Lingg and the Bombs is a French anarchist punk band named in honor of Chicago anarchist Louis Lingg, who was sentenced to death in 1887 for allegedly making the bombs used in the Haymarket Square riot. Lingg committed suicide in prison using an explosive device rather than be executed.

[v] “Quién me ha robado el mes de abril”, (Who stole the month of April from me?) is a song written by renowned Spanish rock music writer and producer Panchito Varona and sung by Spanish songwriter and musician Joaquín Sabina.

[vi] All maize-based food and drink common in southern Mexico.

[vii] This references the struggle of the communities in Morelos resisting the construction of a thermo-electric plant in their region which is part of the “Integrated Plan for Morelos” mega-project. Samir Flores, one of the leaders of the resistance, was killed in February, 2019, in the course of this struggle. The “overseer” refers to Mexican President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador who backs the megaproject and protects the business interests that would divert water supplies from local communities to the plant.

[viii] The Sami are an indigenous people inhabiting what is now the Northern parts of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Russia.

[ix] Yoik is a traditional form of song among the Sami people.

[x] The Selkup are an indigenous people whose traditional territory is in central Russia between the Ob and Yenisey rivers. Trees are an important religious symbol for the Selkup, with cedar personifying the world of the dead.

[xi] This passage refers to Barbarossa (Redbeard) who was born in Mytilene on the island of Lesbos in the Aegean Sea and wound up in Constantinople as the Admiral of the Sultan’s fleet.

[xii] A nyckelharpais a traditional Swedish stringed instrument played with a bow and keys that slide under the strings.

[xiii] The excerpt above is from a 1999 communiqué in which Don Durito, the recurring beetle character in EZLN writings, returns from a long voyage to Europe. Translation and footnotes borrowed from “Conversations with Durito”: http://cril.mitotedigital.org/sites/default/files/content/cwdcomplete_0.pdf

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Congreso Nacional Indígena-Concejo Indígena de Gobierno | Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional

Invitation to the Fifth National Assembly of the National Indigenous Congress

INVITATION TO THE
FIFTH NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF THE NATIONAL INDIGENOUS CONGRESS

The indigenous peoples, nations, tribes and neighborhoods that make up the National Indigenous Congress, the Indigenous Governing Council, and the Zapatista Army for National Liberation, in the face of the disease which affects our Mother Earth and is expressed as a serious pandemic and which has dealt a blow to the life and economy of our communities and the entire world, hear ourselves in the voice of the originary peoples who cry out from the geographies where they resist and struggle against the capitalist war that tries to take over indigenous and rural territories. This war is waged through aggressive extractivist policies across the whole national territory as well as through megaprojects of death: the Interoceanic Highway in the states of Oaxaca and Veracruz, the Integral Project for Morelos in the states of Morelos, Puebla and Tlaxcala, the Mayan Train in the states of the Mexican Southeast, and the Mexico City International Airport in the center of the country. It operates through the implementation of a combination of policies and mechanisms for the continuation of “free trade” subordinated to the United States and Canada, policies which are also aimed at containing migration. It seeks to stop or debilitate the organization and resistance of our peoples by supplanting our traditional authorities and holding staged indigenous consultations.

These policies and megaprojects are driven by the neoliberal government of the Fourth Transformation[1] in the service of global capital and against the autonomous organization of our peoples. All the above is being achieved through the militarization of the country (through creation and deployment of the National Guard and the militarization of the entire national territory), the complicity of the criminal cartel-states, the creation of programs that try to rupture communal organization, as is the case with Sembrando Vida[2], and the passage of laws favorable to large transnational business consortia, such as the Federal Law for the Promotion and Protection of Native Corn.

The CNI and CIG together with the Zapatista communities, acting as a congress when we are together and a network when we are apart, are that collective word that we make our own: we weave ourselves together in and through this word, determined that our resistance grow as large as the capitalist threat to life.

For our peoples there is no option to give in, give up, or sell out, when it’s Mother Earth and life itself that the governments, businesses, militaries and drug cartels want to take as spoils of war.

WHEREAS:

  1. There is an intensification of the repression, threats, formation of shock troops and criminalization of communities that resist the Integrated Project for Morelos, which the bad federal government decided to impose illegally with the use of its armed shock troops called the National Guard; nevertheless, the heroic legacy of Samir Flores Soberanes is kept alive by the sisters and brothers of the Popular Front in Defense of Land and Water in Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala, who don’t give in, give up, or sell out.
  2. The war is escalating against the autonomous and originary communities of the CNI in the state of Chiapas. Meanwhile the governments guarantee impunity for the paramilitary groups they finance and which attack the towns and their sister communities day and night.
  3. The bad federal government, together with its armed forces, is spreading fear and terror in shameless alliance with shadowy economic interests that intend to take over the territories of indigenous peoples and peasants. It cynically violates laws, court rulings, and court-ordered suspensions in order to impose its megaprojects that hand over the national territory to transnational economic interests.
  4. Resistance and rebellion are growing in the geographies of the originary peoples as dispossession and violent repression grow, perpetrated by the bad government at all levels together with paramilitary and narco-paramilitary groups that make possible their extractive and polluting projects. In the big cities, too, our peoples are resisting as demonstrated by the Otomí community in Mexico City.
  5. As originary peoples, from the struggles that we are, we see that sparks of hope are igniting against this war which is the same around the world, and from distant geographies we turn toward each other, toward the struggle for life, which forms a language through which we recognize one another.
  6. The EZLN has issued a convocation to begin a world tour in April of 2021, starting in Europe, and the CNI is invited to form a delegation to accompany this journey and bring our collective word.

WE INVITE the delegates and councilmembers of the CNI-CIG to the:
FIFTH NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF THE NATIONAL INDIGENOUS CONGRESS AND THE INDIGENOUS GOVERNING COUNCIL

To take place in

LA QUINTA PIEDRA, RECUPERATED TERRITORY OF THE NAHUA COMMUNITY OF THE TEPOZTLÁN EJIDO, MORELOS

23-24 JANUARY, 2021

 With the following program:

23 January:

Inauguration

Working groups:

  • Assessment of the dispossession and the capitalist war being waged against our peoples
  • Proposal for the participation of a delegation from the CNI-CIG in the Zapatista world tour

24 January:

Open Plenary:

  • Conclusion of working groups
  • Agreements and resolutions
  • Public communiqué
  • Closing

Note 1: Given the current health circumstances we invite each town, community or indigenous organization, whichever applies, to nominate one or two delegates, with the goal of having an assembly that is widely representative while being smaller in numbers. Those who attend should comply with the measures of wearing a face mask, maintaining a safe distance and frequently washing their hands and face as well as any measures implemented during the meeting.

Note 2: Persons who are not delegates or councilmembers of the CNI/CIG will only be allowed to attend the assembly with an express invitation from the Coordinating and Monitoring Commission.

Sincerely,
December, 2020
For the Full Reconstitution of Our Peoples
Never Again a Mexico Without Us

National Indigenous Congress-Indigenous Governing Council
Zapatista Army for National Liberation

 

[1] The López Obrador campaign deemed its governing project the “Fourth Transformation” (4T), supposedly on par with historic events such as Mexican Independence (1810), a period of reform in the mid-19th century, and the Mexican Revolution (1910).

[2] Sembrando Vida (Sowing the Seeds of Life) is a government program developed under the López Obrador administration that claims to create jobs in local communities through the planting of trees.

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CNI-CIG/EZLN

For Life and Against Money The CNI-CIG and the EZLN Call for Solidarity with the People’s Front in Defense of the Land and Water of Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala

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For Life and Against Money
The CNI-CIG and the EZLN Call for Solidarity with the People’s Front in Defense of the Land and Water of Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala

November 2020.

To the people of Mexico:
To the peoples of the world:
To the Sixth in Mexico and abroad:
To the media:

The National Indigenous Congress-Indigenous Governing Council [CNI-CIG] and the Zapatista Army for National Liberation [EZLN] denounce the National Guard’s cowardly eviction of the compañeros maintaining the resistance camp in San Pedro Apatlaco, Morelos, on November 23, 2020. This eviction was carried out in order to resume the illegal construction of the aqueduct that carries water from the Cuautla River to the Huexca thermoelectric plant.

With utter cynicism the neoliberal government says it governs this country while actually just obeying its real bosses—big capital. With utter cynicism the armed forces, under their overseer’s orders, violate the rights of our peoples, stealing water from the Cuautla River from the peasant communities of Ayala and turning it over to the corporations that will profit from the Integrated Morelos Project: Elecnor and Enagasa, who were awarded the contract for the gas pipeline; Bonatti and Abengoa, who will build the gas pipeline and the thermoelectric plant in Huexca; and Saint Gobain, Nissan, Burlington, Continental, and Northeast Natural Gas, who will profit from gas sales.

The armed forces and the neoliberal government use the Integrated Morelos Project to justify military flyovers to exercise repression and advance the development of energy infrastructure, which is based on the destruction and dispossession of the originary peoples’ territories. Over the spilled blood of our people, like our compañero Samir Flores Soberanes, they exploit nature, allowing the owners of transnational capital to destroy the mountains through mining concessions and ceding the region’s water to the industrial corridors in Cuautla, Yecapixtla, Cuernavaca, and elsewhere in the states of Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala. The overseer who claims to govern this country ordered, with total cynicism and impunity, the trampling of the supposed rule of law, violating eight court-ordered suspensions of the aqueduct project, which would divert and contaminate the region’s water through the construction of the Huexca thermoelectric plant. This is also a violation of two other court-ordered suspensions regarding gas pipeline construction within the periphery of the sacred Popocatepetl volcano and contamination of the Cuautla River, both part of the Integrated Morelos Project.

Given the above and faced with increasing tensions and violations of the rule of law, we hold the bad governments of the state of Morelos and the nation responsible for any repression or attacks against our compañeros and compañeras in struggle who resist these megaprojects of death. In particular we call for solidarity with the People’s Front in Defense of the Land and Water of Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala.

Sincerely
November 2020
For the Full Reconstitution of Our Peoples
Never Again a Mexico Without Us
National Indigenous Congress-Indigenous Governing Council [CNI-CIG]
Zapatista Army for National Liberation
Mexico, November of 2020.

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JBG “Nuevo Amanecer en Resistencia y Rebeldía por la Vida y la Humanidad”

Zapatistas denounce kidnapping of a zapatista support base by paramilitary members of ORCAO

Denunciation from the Zapatista Good Government Council “New Dawn in Resistance and Rebellion for Life and Humanity”, Caracol “New Homeland”, Zapatista territory, Chiapas

November 10, 2020

To the human rights organizations:
To the Sixth in Mexico and abroad:
To the Networks of Resistance and Rebellion:

We denounce the kidnapping and torture of our compañero who is a Zapatista base of support from the community of San Isidro, near Moisés Gandhi, on November 8, 2020, by the ORCAO paramilitary organization.

ORCAO members have been carrying out actions to damage our homes for over a year now. Many human rights organizations, including the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Human Rights Center, CORECO[i], SERAPAZ[ii] and others, have been witness to the harms perpetrated by these paramilitaries. The bad government knows that ORCAO members have been firing on our Moisés Gandhi community day and night, but does nothing to stop them and actually aids and protects its thugs.

All three levels of bad government are fully aware of these attacks, including bad government lackeys like Josefina Bravo[iii] and Ramón Martínez who twist the truth saying that we Zapatistas are provoking the poor little ORCAO paramilitaries. They claim to investigate but they are complicit. This government is the same as previous administrations—there’s a lot of talk about change but the attacks are the same. We hear the same falsehoods as before from these lying bureaucrats who sit in their offices all day getting paid handsomely for doing nothing.

What happened on November 8, 2020, is just the most recent example of this criminal alliance between the ORCAO paramilitaries and López Obrador’s federal government, Rutilio Escandón’s state government, and the municipal governments of Ocosingo and Altamirano. This took place just a few yards away from where the ORCAO burned and looted our cooperative store in Cuxuljá, in response to which the bad government has done nothing to this day.

On November 8, 2020, at around 3:30PM, twenty ORCAO paramilitaries kidnapped and beat our compañero Felix López Hernández who is a Zapatista base of support. The ORCAO members took him to an unknown destination and are holding him, tied up and locked up, without access to food or water.

We denounced this kidnapping the same day it occurred but instead of resolving it, the bad government justified the ORCAO paramilitary action, claiming that we Zapatistas went to provoke the ORCAO in their fields. This is totally false. Our compañero was kidnapped on his way home to his family from the Ocosingo town hall.

The following individuals have been identified as part of the group of ORCAO kidnappers: Andrés Santis López, Nicolás Santis López, Santiago Sánchez López and Oscar Santis López, all from the community of San Antonio.

Instead of remedying the situation and releasing the person they kidnapped, the ORCAO members are demanding an end to the floods that are currently overflowing the drainage system. They are demanding that the electricity be re-installed, even though they themselves cut the electric cables to harass the community of Moisés Gandhi, harming other communities in the process.

Our compañero Felix has not hurt anyone, he doesn’t owe anyone anything, and he does not go around stealing and shooting up people and towns. Do they think our compañero is God and can thereby issue a command to make it stop raining? Or put some sense into the dimwitted ORCAO members who cut the electric cables, thereby harming other communities that are neither Zapatista nor ORCAO-affiliated? And now the ORCAO members play the victim to cover up their crime.

We have information that the ORCAO members from the San Antonio community received money for infrastructure project offered by the bad government to build an elementary school, but those three hundred thousand pesos were instead used to buy high-caliber weapons. Is this the what the government of the 4T[iv] stands for, claiming to be building schools while in reality financing weapons for paramilitary groups? Is that its counterinsurgency plan?

Lastly, we want to tell Mr. López, Mr. Escandón and their government employees that we hold them responsible for whatever happens to the Zapatista men, women, children and elders in the community of Moisés Gandhi. We hold them responsible for the community’s pain, blood, and suffering and we will hold them accountable for whatever may happen next.

We demand that our compañero Felix be freed immediately, and the ORCAO kidnappers be arrested and charged. The ORCAO must also replace what it stole and destroyed in our cooperative store, and understand that sooner or later, whomever plays with fire will get burned. The bad governments must stop their counterinsurgency efforts and remember that everything comes to an end eventually, no matter how loud-mouthed and bossy they may be. If they don’t believe us, they can go ask Trump.

For the “New Dawn in Resistance and Rebellion for Life and Humanity” Good Government Council.

“Flowering of the Rebel Seed, New Homeland” Caracol, Chiapas, Mexico.

November 10, 2020


[i] Comisión de apoyo a la unidad y Reconciliación Comunitaria, or Support Commission for Community Unity and Reconciliation, a non-governmental organization in Chiapas, Mexico.

[ii] Servicios y Asesoria para la Paz, or Services and Guidance for Peace, a non-governmental organization in Mexico.

[iii] Josefina Bravo Rangel is the head of the Commission for Dialogue with the Indigenous Peoples of Mexico.

[iv] The López Obrador campaign deemed its governing project the “Fourth Transformation” (4T), supposedly on par with historic events such as Mexican Independence (1810), a period of reform in the mid-19th century, and the Mexican Revolution (1910).

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EZLN

Part Four: Memory of What Is to Come

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Part Four: Memory of What Is to Come

October 2020.

Let’s go back, to 35 Octobers ago.

Old Man Antonio watched the bonfire resist the rain. Beneath his dripping straw hat he lights his hand-rolled cigarette with a burning ember. The fire stays alive, hiding occasionally beneath the logs; the wind helps it, its breath reviving the coals, red with rage.

The camp is called “Watapil[i] and is located in the Sierra Cruz de Plata which rises between the wet arms of the Jataté and Perlas rivers. It’s 1985, and October receives the group with a storm, presaging their future. The tall almond tree (which will become the namesake of that mountain in the insurgent’s vernacular) looks down with compassion at the small, minuscule, insignificant group of men and women at its feet, with their gaunt faces, haggard bodies, bright eyes (perhaps from fever, stubbornness, fear, delirium, hunger or lack of sleep), ragged brown and black clothes, and boots distorted by the knotted vines that are intended to hold their soles in place.

Softly and slowly, his words barely audible over the howl of the storm, Old Man Antonio speaks as if he were talking to himself:

“The Ruler will return again to impose on the color of the earth his harsh word, his ego that kills all reason, his bribe disguised as a handout. (Continuar leyendo…)

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Subcomandante Insurgente Galeano

Part Five: The Gaze and the Distance to the Door.

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Part Five: The Gaze and the Distance to the Door.

October 2020

Let’s suppose it is possible to choose where to direct your own gaze. Suppose that you could free yourself, if only for a moment, from the tyranny of social networks that impose not only what you see and talk about, but also how you see and how you talk. Then, suppose that you lift your gaze higher: from the immediate to the local to the regional to the national to the global. Can you see that far? Yes, it’s chaos, confusion and disorder out there. Then let’s suppose you are a human being, not a digital application that quickly scans, classifies, orders, judges and sanctions, and as such, you choose where to look… and how to look. It could be (this is just a hypothetical) that looking and judging aren’t the same thing, such that you don’t just choose where to direct your gaze, you also decide what your inquiry is, shifting the question from “Is this good or bad?” to “What is this?” Of course, the former implies a juicy debate (are there still debates?), which in turn leads to “This is good—or bad—because I say so.” Or perhaps to a discussion about what good and evil are, and from there to arguments and citations with footnotes. Yes, you’re right, that’s better than resorting to “likes” and “thumbs up”, but what I’m proposing is to change the starting point: choose where to direct your gaze.

(Continuar leyendo…)

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Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés

Part Six: A Mountain on the High Seas. Zapatistas will travel through the 5 continents

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Part Six: A Mountain on the High Seas

Communique from the Indigenous Revolutionary Clandestine Committee
General Command of the Zapatista Army for National Liberation

MEXICO

October 5, 2020

To the National Indigenous Congress—Indigenous Governing Council:
To the Sixth in Mexico and abroad:
To the Networks of Resistance and Rebellion:
To all honest people who resist in every corner of the planet:

Sisters, brothers, hermanoas:
Compañeras, compañeros and compañeroas:

We Zapatista originary peoples of Mayan roots send you greetings and want to share with you our collective thought about what we have seen, heard, and felt.

First: We see and hear a socially sick world, fragmented into millions of people estranged from each other, doubled down in their efforts for individual survival but united under the oppression of a system that will do anything to satisfy its thirst for profit, even when its path is in direct contradiction to the existence of planet Earth.

This abomination of a system and its stupid defense of “progress” and “modernity” crashes into the wall of its own criminal reality: femicides. The murder of women has no color or nationality; it is global. If it is absurd and unreasonable for someone to be persecuted, disappeared, or murdered for the color of their skin, their race, their culture or their beliefs, it’s simply unbelievable that the fact of being a woman is equivalent to a death sentence or a life of marginalization.

The criminal logic of the murder of women is that of the system, escalating in predictable fashion (harassment, physical violence, mutilation, and murder) and backed by structural impunity (“she deserved it,” “she had tattoos,” “what was she doing out at that hour?” “dressed like that, what did she expect?”). This happens to women across geographies, social classes, races and ages from early girlhood to old age; gender is the one constant. The system is incapable of explaining how this reality goes hand in hand with its “development” and “progress.” The outrageous statistics say it all: the more “developed” a society is the higher the number of victims in this veritable war on women.

(Continuar leyendo…)

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CONVOCATORIA A LA JORNADA NACIONAL DE MOVILIZACIÓN EN DEFENSA DE LA MADRE TIERRA Y CONTRA LA GUERRA AL EZLN, LOS PUEBLOS Y COMUNIDADES INDÍGENAS

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Al CCRI-CG EZLN
Al Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional.
A la Comisión Sexta del EZLN
Al Congreso Nacional Indígena.
Al Concejo Indígena de Gobierno y su vocera María de Jesús Patricio Martínez.
A la Sexta Nacional e Internacional.
A las Redes de Resistencia y Rebeldía
A los medios de comunicación, independientes, alternativos o como se llamen.
Al pueblo de México y al Mundo.

Herman@s.

12 DE OCTUBRE. 528 AÑOS DE RESISTENCIA

*JORNADA NACIONAL DE MOVILIZACIÓN EN DEFENSA DE LA MADRE TIERRA Y CONTRA LA GUERRA AL EZLN, LOS PUEBLOS Y COMUNIDADES INDÍGENAS.

Este 12 de octubre, se cumplen 528 años del mal llamado Encuentro de Dos Mundos; este aniversario que para unos pocos es motivo de festejo, para nosotros los pueblos originarios y los pobres de México, es una fecha que nos recuerda el inicio del sufrimiento, de la destrucción de nuestras culturas y el despojo de nuestras tierras y de los bienes que en ellas existen.   Pero también es un día en el que celebramos la Resistencia Digna de nuestros pueblos, rememoramos qué en estos 528 años, nuestros abuelos y abuelas, nuestros padres y madres han luchado para defender lo nuestro, es una fecha que tiene un gran valor simbólico, por ello y frente a la grave situación que vivimos y ante la urgente necesidad de levantar la voz y exigir sean respetados los derechos de nuestros pueblos, los estamos convocando a sumarse una gran jornada de movilización nacional.

Vivimos una larga noche que dura ya 528 años, tiempo donde los invasores y sus descendientes han sometido con violencia y engaños a muchos de nuestros pueblos, no son pocos los que han sucumbido ante la avaricia y la sed de ganancia de los poderosos, mientras muchos otros, la gran mayoría sobreviven en medio de la pobreza, la violencia y la discriminación.

Nuestros pueblos dieron su esfuerzo y su sangre para expulsar al conquistador español, sin embargo, una vez independientes, nuestras gentes no encontraron la libertad; ofrendaron a sus hijos para expulsar a los invasores norteamericanos y franceses, pero siguieron sufriendo despojos y violencia; se levantaron en contra del Dictador Díaz, al que derrotaron, pero los gobiernos que asesinaron a Flores Magón, a Villa y a Zapata han estado al servicio de los grandes capitales nacionales y extranjeros. A pesar de tanta lucha, nuestras gentes siguen enfrentando día a día la violencia, la miseria y los atropellos de los poderosos.

(Continuar leyendo…)

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