About "Fair Trade"
The Other Campaign and the Sexta
Latest Zapatista News
Women and Zapatismo News
How Can I help?
Handicrafts and Clothing for Sale
October 5th, 2008 - Police murder six indigenous in Chiapas
From Mexico Solidarity Network
State and federal police killed five members of the Miguel Hidalgo ejido and one member of a neighboring community, and left at least ten people with gunshot wounds during an invasion of an archeological site on Saturday. Despite initial reports by authorities, there were no injuries suffered by police. Four of the dead were murdered when police intercepted a pickup truck carrying the injured to a local hospital. The driver of the truck, who was a neighbor from a nearby community, and three gravely wounded survivors of the police invasion were assassinated at close range.
Police expelled hundreds of ejido members from the Chincultik archeological ruins, located on the lands of the Miguel Hidalgo ejido, in an operation that included at least 300 officers. Ejido members occupied the ruins last month, complaining that the National Institute of Archeology and History (INAH) had left the ruins without maintenance while colleting excessive entrance fees. Some found the police action consistent with the unstated but implicit INAH policy over the years to “protect indigenous culture while killing all the Indians.” Ejido members lowered the entrance fee from 35 to 20 pesos, generating income for the community of about 4,000 pesos per week. The day before the police invasion, the 7,000-member ejido was engaged in ongoing negotiations with State authorities over the future of the ruins, which made the attack even more surprising. One ejido leader wondered, “We ask President Calderon and Governor Juan Sabines: ‘Why did you send police to kill us when the day before we were engaged in dialogue with authorities to resolve the problem?’”
Ejido members initially disarmed about 70 police who arrived in the first contingent to arrest community members occupying the ruins. The situation appeared calm until an additional several hundred police arrived late in the afternoon, firing indiscriminately into houses and using teargas to disperse residents. Officials in Tuxtla Gutierrez ordered all police who participated in the action to present themselves for ballistics tests to determine who fired shots.
June 10th, 2008 - The Zapatistas and the War on Drugs
The New Government Provocation Against Zapatismo
by Luis Hernández Navarro, La Jornada, June 10, 2008 - translation by Kristin Bricker
Since the January 1994 insurrection, various administrations have wanted to associate the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN in its Spanish initials) with drug trafficking. They've never been able to demonstrate such a link, but they try time and time again.
This past June 4 the tired old story played out again. Only this time the threat is greater than in the past. On that date over 200 agents from the federal Army, the Attorney General's office, and state and municipal police, with their faces painted, entered the Zapatista territory of La Garrucha with the pretext of looking for marijuana plants. Hundreds of residents from the Hermenegildo Galeana and San Alejando communities fended them off with machetes, clubs, and slingshots. <Full Article>
January 21st, 2008
Why the Zapatistas Are Preparing for War - The Color Red, “26 Communities” and La Otra
Subcomandante Marcos got everyone’s attention when he presented "Feeling Red: The Calendar and Geography of War" at a symposium in honor of the late Andrés Aubry in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas. Marcos announced that they (the EZLN) would not be attending conferences, encuentros or giving interviews for a “good while.” He said the Zapatista communities are surrounded by military camps and paramilitaries and are preparing for the war which they see coming. "Those of us who have made war know how to recognize the paths by which it is prepared and brought near," Marcos said. "The signs of war on the horizon are clear. War, like fear, also has a smell. And now we are starting to breathe its fetid odor in our lands." He delivered that speech on December 17, 2007, just eleven days before the start of the Women’s Encuentro in La Garrucha, Chiapas. Consequently, one question on everyone’s mind in La Garrucha and during our visits after the Encuentro was: What did Marcos mean when he said they were preparing for war? <full article>
December 26th, 2007
Zapatista Code Red
By Naomi Klein
Nativity scenes are plentiful in San Cristóbal de las Casas, a colonial city in the highlands of Chiapas, Mexico. But the one that greets visitors at the entrance to the TierrAdentro cultural center has a local twist: figurines on donkeys wear miniature ski masks and carry wooden guns.
It is high season for "Zapatourism," the industry of international travelers that has sprung up around the indigenous uprising here, and TierrAdentro is ground zero. Zapatista-made weavings, posters and jewelry are selling briskly. In the courtyard restaurant, where the mood at 10 pm is festive verging on fuzzy, college students drink Sol beer. A young man holds up a photograph of Subcomandante Marcos, as always in mask with pipe, and kisses it. His friends snap yet another picture of this most documented of movements.
I am taken through the revelers to a room in the back of the center, closed to the public. The somber mood here seems a world away. Ernesto Ledesma Arronte, a 40-year-old ponytailed researcher, is hunched over military maps and human rights incident reports. "Did you understand what Marcos said?" he asks me. "It was very strong. He hasn't said anything like that in many years."
December 9th, 2007 - From Mexico Solidarity Network
INVESTIGATION OF OPDDIC
The government of Chiapas called last week for an investigation of the Organization for the Defense of Indigenous and Campesino Communities (Opddic), a paramilitary group aligned with powerful state PRI leaders. Governor Juan Sabines called for the Federal Attorney General and the National Human Rights Commission to investigate Opddicâ€™s finances and recent actions, including death threats against the Autonomous Council of San Andres and violent attacks in the municipalities of Chilon and Tumbala. The request follows dozens of public denouncements by the Juntas of Good Government and non-governmental organizations, and increasing international pressure on the state government. In the most recent attack, eighty members of Opddic entered Bolon Ajaw, an autonomous Zapatista community, and threatened community members with machetes and high
caliber weapons. At least one community member, Manuel Hernandez, was beaten unconscious, and 41 Zapatista families were forced to leave Bolon Ajaw. Opddic has at least 68 legal cases pending that demand the removal of Zapatista communities from lands liberated during the 1994 uprising. Given Opddicâ€™s strong political connections with the PRI and the federal office of Agrarian Reform, it remains to be seen if the investigation will be serious, or merely a publicity effort to cover up the increasingly violent actions of Opddic.
BORDER CROSSING DEATHS INCREASING
At least 4,745 immigrants died crossing the border over the past thirteen years, according to a report by the National Human Rights Commission entitled â€œWe All Know, Nobody Admits It: Thirteen Years of Immigrant Deaths.â€ Since the initiation of Operation Guardian in October, 1994, on average at least one immigrant per day died at the border, though the numbers are increasing to nearly two immigrants per day over the past couple of years due largely to increased border vigilance on the US side. The death toll reached 2,533 from 2001 to 2007: 491 in the San Diego region, 1,221 in Arizona, and 821 in Texas.