Letter from Raúl Zibechi

From Uruguay: Raúl Zibechi Letter About the Worldwide Week of Action: “Juan Vázquez Guzmán Lives, The Bachajón Struggle Continues!”   


Raúl Zibechi

Raúl Zibechi

For all the sons, daughters and children of the Mother Earth, as our compa Raúl Zibechi suggests, it “is possible to weave bridges between those who are different if we recognize their differences … We invite you to continue building a new and different world, one with room for all the colors, from the distinct and intense colors of the earth to the pale colors of the cold lands.” Thank you, Compañero Raúl Zibechi.

Here is our compañero’s letter:

To the Week of Worldwide Action: “Juan Vázquez Guzmán lives, the Bachajón struggle continues!”

To the compañeros and compañeras from: Movement for Justice in El Barrio, Dorset Chiapas Solidarity Group, England, Committee of the True Word from Kolkata, India, and Committee of the True Word from Alisal.

Death also has a color, a class and a geographical location. Like life. Like pain.

When I was looking for what to say to the compas who are organizing the week of action in tribute to Juan Vázquez Guzmán, I found the testimony of an African American woman, black and, therefore, poor, who was born in Harlem in the terrible decade of the1930s, when the rich offloaded the crisis on to those from below.

This woman was called Audre Lorde, she was a poet and, among many other things, she said: “For us, the whole of life is tinged with violence. We not only face it in the front line, or at midnight in dark alleys, or in places where we dare to express our resistance. Violence is the very fabric of our lives.”

I feel that Audre Lorde and Juan Vázquez Guzmán are siblings in blood who became brother and sister five centuries ago somewhere in this world, while the Juans were resisting the conquistadores and the Audres were seeking to escape from the slaveholders. The resistances united and continue to unite the people of the color of the earth. Juan and Audre send us, from somewhere, the message that it is possible to unite the resistances, to weave bridges between Indians and blacks, between men and women, between people who live in the North and people who live in the South.

Juan Vázquez Guzmán

Juan Vázquez Guzmán

It is possible to weave bridges between those who are different if we recognize their differences. If we do not judge them. If we mix the resistances, making the cause of each one into our cause. Audre defined herself as “black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet”. Juan’s smile and his love for the people of his community, San Sebastián Bachajón, represents a program for life which he adhered to strictly until his final day.

The death of Juan, the murder of Juan, is a punishment of the community for defending the waterfalls of Agua Azul from tourist speculation. The goal of capital and of the Mexican state is to use the gifts of nature to accumulate wealth, or to turn life into death. The war against the peoples to appropriate nature is turning the population of San Sebastian Bachajón into military targets. Juan was one of them, for having been prominent in the defense of the community.

I want to say to those who live in New York, in California, in England, India or anywhere in the world, or to those who live in Montevideo and Buenos Aires, and who are not Tzeltal like Juan, or black like Audre, that we can join together in fellowship with them in multiple resistances, and that from this fellowship, and only from it, a new, different world will be born, one with room for all the colors, from the distinct and intense colors of the earth to the pale colors of the cold lands. And that in this fellowship there will be a heart with the name of Juan; and with Juan we will name the heart of all.

Health and a good week of fellowship,

Raul Zibechi


June 23, 2013






One Comment on “Letter from Raúl Zibechi

  1. Pingback: Being different, to save the world – The Free

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