For life and against war in the Zapatista communities

By: Gilberto López y Rivas

Today is being carried out in national territory, and in various countries of the solidarity world (among them, France, Spain, Greece and the United States), a day against the militarization of Zapatista territories and communities, which has been denounced by the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN), and studied methodically by the Fray Bartolomé de las Casa Human Rights Center (Frayba).

The Frayba, through the documentation that the Civilian Observation Brigades (Brigadas Civiles de Observación, BriCO) carry out, sees a 100 percent increase in the number of incursions of the Mexican Army, land patrols, and helicopter flyovers that started in December 2018, and, it concludes, with well-founded reasons, that these acts of intimidation and harassment “mean an attack on their right to autonomy and represent a risk to the life, integrity and security of the entire population. It has been observed that military vehicles often pass at high speed through the communities, without concern about the people, the children or the animals in the road.” The Frayba also documented acts of espionage in the international observation camp of La Realidad, which equally violates the integrity and security of those who carry out monitoring.

This process of militarization is also being carried out through an increase in the activity of paramilitary groups, which the Sedena, for sure, in a reinterpretation of the old metaphor of “taking away the water from the revolutionary fish” (isolating them from the people), considers in its counterinsurgency manuals that it gives better results in counter-revolutionary action introducing “braver fish” into the theater of war. We remember the State crime of Acteal, or the work the killers carried out in the territories in resistance to understand this “metaphorical contribution” of the Mexican military men to global counterinsurgency.

The EZLN, in the communiqué that denounces the military offensive, points out: “The patrols and flyovers don’t follow the drug trafficking routes, or those of the overwhelmed caravans of migrant sisters and brothers who flee from a war that refuses to say its name… to enter another that hides behind a talkative and quarrelsome federal Executive. No, that death threat travels by air and land through the indigenous communities that have decided to stay in resistance and rebellion in order to defend the land, because in it is life. Now, additionally, members of the Federal Army and Air Force go into the mountains and appear in the communities saying that war is coming and that they are just waiting for ‘orders from the very top’.” The obligatory question at this point is: Who is giving the orders?”

In the rest of the country, militarization (and para-militarization) materialize, on the one hand, in the implementation of the National Guard, which constitutes a surrender of public security to the military, now legalized, and on the other hand, in the role assigned to organized crime in the murders of indigenous defenders of territory and of Mother Earth, councilors of the CNI–CIG, many of them community radio communicators, like Samir Flores Soberanes, executed 10 days after the continuity of the Morelos Integral Project was announced.

This process of militarization and para-militarization in Zapatista territories, or in anticapitalist resistance, is carried out without the organic intellectuals of the Fourth Transformation being disturbed, occupied as they are in writing epistles of unconditional support to the federal Executive, or accepting key portfolios of the Cabinet for the eventual granting of the permits necessary to continue the death megaprojects.

The current global crisis of civilization detonates a radical destruction of the basis of life. Among its principal forms in play are ethnocide, ecocide or necro-political capitalism. (See the exceptional book from Luis Arizmendi / Jorge Beinstein, Tiempos de Peligro: Estado de excepción y guerra mundial. UAZ-Plaza y Valdés Editores, México, 2018). Contemporary critical thought is deepening in the denunciation of the new forms of destruction that it brings with it, necessarily, relating to the accumulation by dispossession “of public property, of common property and of generic property (like genetic codes or water)” (Arizmendi, ibíd. p. 20), until reaching death policies as the basis of an accelerated accumulation based on the criminal economy.

The militarization process in Chiapas opens the danger of a new Acteal. De-militarization, the dismantling of the paramilitary groups and respect for the Zapatista communities, their territories and their autonomous processes, must be complied with immediately. ¡El EZLN no está solo! (The EZLN is not alone!)


Originally Published in Spanish by La Jornada

Friday, May 31, 2019

Re-Published with English interpretation by the Chiapas Support Committee


One Comment on “For life and against war in the Zapatista communities

  1. Pingback: Zapatista News & Analysis | Blog of Zapatista Support Group Wellington, Aotearoa/New Zealand

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