Words of Comandanta Hortencia in the name of the CCRI-CG of the EZLN in Oventik, Chiapas, Mexico, on October 19, 2017 Part I
Compañeros and compañeras of the Indigenous Government Council
Compañeros and compañeras of the National Indigenous Congress
Compañera, sister, friend, María de Jesús Patricio Martínez
Compañeras and compañeros of the National and International Sixth
Brothers and Sisters from different social organizations
Brothers and Sisters from different towns and municipalities invited to this gathering
Brothers and Sisters of the national and international press
Brothers and Sisters of the free and alternative media, national and international
Brothers and Sisters national and international observers
Brothers and sisters, today we are gathered in this center, Caracol II of Oventic “Resistance and Rebellion for Humanity.” We are here to receive, accompany and listen to the words of the Indigenous Government Council and its spokesperson María de Jesús Patricio Martínez.
In the name of the compañeros, compañeras, women, men, youths, children and elderly support bases of the Zapatista National Liberation Army, the Indigenous Revolutionary Clandestine Committee- General Command of the EZLN greets the National Indigenous Congress, the Indigenous Government Council and its spokesperson María de Jesús Patricio Martínez, and we want to say that you have undertaken a long and difficult path, but it’s necessary to meet with the brothers and sisters in every corner of our country Mexico.
Marichuy, as we affectionately call her, is our spokesperson, who together with the council members of the Indigenous Government Council will tour all of Mexican territory to speak and listen to the voice of the most forgotten, marginalized and scorned peoples of our homeland, like the Native peoples that we are, or as they call us with scorn “Indian peoples.” She will also talk about the truly difficult situation in which all the poor Mexicans live, without distinction to organization, party, race, color, language, culture or religious belief.
Our spokesperson, from here, carries the voice of the original peoples, of the peoples that struggle, that resist and that rebel against the evils that the capitalist social system represented by the bad governments is causing.
But as the original peoples we are the most forgotten, marginalized, scorned and without any respect. For more than five centuries we have suffered cruel exploitation, looting of our riches, dispossession of our lands and territories, destruction of our languages and cultures, just for being natives of these lands, for being the color of the earth, we are not nothing, we have no value, we don’t have the right to health care or to the best education and we are only a hindrance to the big capitalists and the bad governments.
When the original peoples, tribes and nations demand our rights and ask for justice, we are repressed, incarcerated, persecuted, disappeared, tortured and murdered. It’s that way in our states and all over our country Mexico, and in all the corners of the world.
And when we organize to be seen, to make ourselves heard, so that everyone knows we exist, that we resist, that we rebel, that we live, then the insults and lies begin: that we are not able to think, that we can’t organize, that they manipulate us, that we serve the political interests of those who sell out the country, that we are a “plot” against the “good” mestizos and ladinos that want to oblige us to follow and obey them because they are the ones with know-how and, according to them, we are ignorant. And if you don’t understand anything about what’s happening and about what’s going to happen, they have a lot of studies and big heads free of charge. And, they want to dominate, scorn and humiliate us just like those who are now overseers do.
And they want to pressure us so that we change masters, lords, bosses or finqueros.
And we also know that just like our indigenous brothers and sisters live and suffer in many countries on our continent of America and in many countries of the world; just to mention some, we know how our brothers and sisters suffer in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile, Argentina and many other countries. There are no governments or laws that protect and defend our peoples.
And here we especially greet the brother Mapuche people that resist and struggle in the last corner of the world. Al pueblo Mapuche and those who accompany them in their resistance, like Santiago Maldonado, we send a big hug that fills the whole Latin American continent to find it.
But what’s most important now is that in all the Native peoples of our continent and of the world, there are consciences, there are resistances, rebellions, rages, desires to live and fight for a different world, for a new society and a new life for everyone.
Today, tomorrow and always, being Native peoples of any part of the world is no longer a shame, but rather a source of pride, it’s no longer a story, no longer is it a myth, but rather a reality, because we Native peoples are the ones that are going to care for and defend Mother Earth and all nature; we the Native peoples jointly with our brother and sister honest and rebellious artists, professionals, religious, intellectuals and scientists that are going to save the world and humanity.
Therefore we say…
Now is the time of the original peoples, the time of women, the time of the marginalized, of the scorned, of the forgotten, and it’s the time of all the poor and exploited of Mexico, of America and of the world, it’s the time of changing this criminal and murderous capitalist social system, it’s the time of uniting all the poor of the countryside and the city, it’s time to organize ourselves and struggle for real democracy, liberty and justice for all.
Today and from now on our peoples will know how to govern themselves and direct their own destiny, just like we Zapatistas are showing that for more than 20 years we have been constructing our autonomy.
Because we don’t want a change of master, boss or dominator; we don’t want any master, any boss, and we don’t want any dominator, ladino, mestizo or indigenous. No master!
What we want is freedom, our freedom, FREEDOM!
And we know very well that no one is going to give it to us, and we know very well that we have to fight every day, every hour and everywhere to win our freedom. And it doesn’t end there, because then we have to fight so that no one takes our freedom away.
That’s why we respectfully ask our spokesperson and the Indigenous Government Council to go and listen to the voices of the original peoples and of all the poor sectors of Mexico, in order to learn about the struggles, resistance and rebellion of many brothers in the whole country.
And (we ask) that they clearly tell the truth: no one is going to give us anything; we have to fight to get what we want, deserve and need!
And we have to get organized!
The Zapatista peoples are with the spokesperson, with the Indigenous Government Council and with the National Indigenous Congress, they are going to fulfill a mission of touring the country to speak and hear the truth and also to invite them to struggle, although we know that it’s not easy for them; but it’s necessary to take the risk for a just cause, in favor of life for everyone.
Our spokesperson will talk about how it is possible and necessary to construct a different Mexico, where one can govern under the 7 principles of govern obeying (mandar obedeciendo), where the people decide and the government obeys.
Brothers and sisters of the countryside and the city, we invite you then to listen to the spokesperson, so that you hear the truth, and the truth is that now there is no government that governs our country, and those who say that they are governors and president are nothing more than big corrupt overseers and majordomos that fulfill the orders of the big transnational corporations.
And the neoliberal governments that have planned to sack all our wealth and convert our country into their plantation (finca), and have those of us who inhabit these lands as their slaves and destroy us, those corrupt ones are not going to respect anyone, we will all be swept away without distinction to part y, organization of religious belief.
Because we know that the plans of the bad governments and the evil neoliberal capitalists, is the death, destruction and annihilation of those who rebel; we know that they are equipped with their armaments for ending humanity.
But we must not be afraid now, because those who govern are few and seize the wealth of our country, but it’s not important to the workers and all the poor sectors what offices they have, but they and many millions of us are suffering, that’s why if we wake up, if we unite, if we get organized and struggle together as brothers and compañeros, we will be able to change this situation and destroy the criminal monster, because truth and reason are on our side.
If we don’t do anything, our children, our grandchildren and all the generations that will come later are going to live worse than us, and our country will have no future.
Therefore we must no longer permit that our lands, our territories and our country are property of the big transnational corporations and the powerful neoliberals, who are just looting and destroying our natural riches, we must no longer permit them to manipulate us, deceive us and murder our peoples; now is the time to say BASTA (ENOUGH) of so many evils. Enough of having people incarcerated, disappeared, tortured and murdered unjustly by the bad governments!
Now is the time to begin constructing a new society and a new world un where all human beings live with liberty and justice, where we no longer have to live in misery and die from curable diseases, where we treat each other as brothers equally, with respect, and in communication and harmony with Mother Nature.
Mexico should be an inclusive country without importance to race, color, language, culture or religious belief.
That’s why we have no other path than to decide to unite and fight together, organized. We can’t wait for anyone to come and save us from this disgrace. Everyone’s participation is needed for that: organized men, women and young people.
Her entire speech is published in Spanish at: https://actividadesdelcigysuvocera.blogspot.mx/2017/10/palabras-de-la-comandanta-hortencia.html