By: Daliri Oropeza
The National Indigenous Congress decided in an assembly to accompany the EZLN’s tour to different continents and to go on the offensive faced with the political landscape that is pushing energy megaprojects and imposing a territorial reorganization focused on profits.
“Now we are on the offensive,” a Nahua campesino delegate of the National Indigenous Congress tells me, who, in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic attended the Fifth Joint Assembly with the Indigenous Government Council. It was a two-day meeting with 180 participants; representing most of the peoples that make up this network of peoples, communities and barrios.
Once there, the social barriers that Covid-19 has created were broken. The meeting was held in a recuperated territory in the Ejido Tepoztlán, Morelos, the Fifth Stone. It was taken back (recuperated) from the first one to plunder it, with the surname of Salinas de Gortari.  Only two representatives from each people were allowed to be present.
Many people felt nervous at the beginning because of the pandemic. Little by little the atmosphere normalized with the mutual care of following health measures and the use of masks. The EZLN’s invitation to accompany the tour through various continents and the crisis situation in which we live, which is much more acute in the communities in resistance, forced the CNI to leave the virtual world and make agreements face to face.
Morelos is in the red zone for Covid. And also for the megaprojects. For this reason, it was symbolic that they carried out these collective decisions in Tepoztlán. There the government of the self-proclaimed 4T is the Huexca Thermoelectric Plant and with it, the culmination of the Morelos Integral Project.
“The anti-capitalist proposal has body and substance,” affirms Carlos González, agrarian lawyer and delegate to the CNI.
In the pronouncement they denounce:
“The imposition of the Maya Train, coupled with the construction of 15 urban centers, of the Salina Cruz-Coatzacoalcos Interoceanic Corridor that contemplates 10 urban-industrial corridors, and of the International Airport of Mexico City-Lake Texcoco Ecological Park, together with the Morelos Integral Project seek the country’s reorganization in accordance with the economic interests of big capital. Similarly, this project of building for the benefit of foreign companies three thermoelectric plants –one of which is finished–, a network of pipelines and a mega-plant to store fuels in the Santiago River watershed, to the south of Guadalara, which also happens to be one of the most contaminated regions in the country, is very serious; to all of that you have to add the Centenary Canal, currently being carried out by the National Guard, which intends to draw from the San Pedro and Santiago Rivers in Nayarit. In the same way, open pit mining threatens hundreds of territories of indigenous peoples using the same formula of division, dispossession and destruction of our communities.”
“Capitalism in its incessant development is driving human societies to madness, it is propitiating the destruction of the conditions for human life, as we have already indicated during the tour of the compañera Marichuy with the Indigenous Governing Council and the Zapatistas over and over again,” assures Carlos González, and he emphasizes that it is one of the core points in the collective reflection of the Fifth Assembly, in an interview with journalist Rubén Martín.
This crack that the Zapatistas open to denounce the dispossession is important.
In the five working groups, as well as in the plenary session, the CNI decided that a commission made up of mostly women would attend the tour alongside the EZLN across 5 continents. And not only that. They agreed to incorporate a commission of care for the families that stay behind while the women heed the call.
Accordion to the sociologist and social anthropologist Márgara Millán, who also attended the Fifth Assembly, this is a qualitative advancement in the CNI’s way of organizing. To assume care in a collective way is a result of their lived experience during the tour of Marichuy, in addition to the imprint made by the Zapatista women that have led fundamental organizational gatherings.
What Millán refers to as advances, the Nahua campesino of the CNI expresses as going on the offensive, through activating care. It is care for the countryside, care for the compañeras that predominates the discussions. It is not only denouncing, but acting. To subscribe to the Zapatista initiative for life is to participate in the activities and deepen the anticapitalist struggles of resistance.
 Carlos Salinas de Gortari was president of Mexico between 1988 and 1994, notably during the Zapatista Uprising.
Originally Published in Spanish by Pie de Página
Wednesday, February 3, 2021
English interpretation by Schools for Chiapas
Re-Published by the Chiapas Support Committee