EZLN: The Extemporaneous and a National Initiative

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July 2021

To the Adherents to The Declaration for Life:

To the Europe of Below and to the:

To the National and International Sixth:

To the National Indigenous Congress-Indigenous Government Council:

To the Networks in Resistance and Rebellion:

To “The Hour of the Peoples Has Come” Collective:

From: Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés.

Compañeras, compañeroas, compañeros:

Sisters, brothers, others:

I greet you in the name of the children, women, binary people (otroas), elders and men of the Zapatista communities, and communicate the following:

First – We already have a strong Zapatista airborne company at 177 Zapatistas.  It is made up entirely of native Mayas, of the Cho´ol, Tzotzil, Tzeltal, Tojolabal and Castile languages.  We are born in the geography they call Mexico.  Our ancestors were born and died in these lands.  As the Mexican State does not recognize our identity and origin, and tells us that we are “extemporaneous” (as the Foreign Relations Ministry says, that we are “extemporaneous” Mexicans), we have decided to baptize this unit of Listen and Word “The Extemporaneous.”

According to what we see in the dictionaries, “extemporaneous” means: “that which is inopportune, inconvenient,” or “that is inappropriate for the time in which it happens.” In other words, that we are inopportune, inconvenient and inappropriate.

They had never before defined us so inadequately. We are happy that at last the Mexican State recognizes that this is how it considers the original peoples of this geography called Mexico. I believe that’s how it laments that he hasn’t annihilated us… yet; and that our existence contradicts the official discourse about the “conquest.” It is now understood that the Mexican government’s demand to the government of Spain, demanding that it ask forgiveness, is for not having exterminated us.

Of the 177 delegates, 62 of us still don’t have a passport. The Ministry of Foreign Relations is bound to the “inconvenience” that we represent. Despite the fact that we have demonstrated identity and origin, it continues demanding more and more papers. The only thing missing is that it asks the Central American governments to say that we are not citizens of those countries.

2 – The “La Extemporaneous” air transport company, with me at the helm, has been preparing since October 2020 and we have been in quarantine almost one month.  It is composed of:

– Several groups of “Listen and Word,” indigenous Zapatistas whose existence and memory span the history of our struggle from the years before the uprising to the beginning of the Journey for Life.

– A female soccer team made up of 36 milicianas (who are also “Listen and Word”) who have taken the name and example of the late Comandanta Ramona, the first Zapatista to leave Chiapas, and they identify themselves as “Ixchel Ramona” and thus will go to the sports fields of Europe.

– The self-styled “Popcorn Command” is made up of 6 girls and boys who are from the “Play and Mischief” group. Like all of us, they have been preparing.

–  The invasion’s coordinator group. They are the ones who will be in charge of organizing and in their case, reinforcing the “Listen and Word” groups that will be distributed in the 5 areas into which we have divided the European continent. They will also attend to the free and for pay communications media, participate in round table discussions, conferences and public events; and they will evaluate the development of the invasion.

With Squadron 421 we will complete the first Zapatista wave and we will begin the visits to those who invited us and, with attention and respect, we will listen to them. If you ask about it, we will talk about our little history of resistance and rebellion.

3 – A delegation will travel with us from the National Indigenous Congress-CIG, strong in 10 indigenous languages: Native Maya, Popoluca, Binizá, Purhépecha, Raramuri, Otomí, Naayeri/Wixarika and Nahua; as well as 3 brothers from the Peoples Front in Defense of Land and Water of Tlaxcala, Puebla and Morelos, 13 in all.

4 – Because it’s my turn to do the Journey for Life-Chapter Europe, I have entrusted Subcomandante Insurgente Galeano to take command in Mexico and to initiate, as soon as possible, contacts with the National Indigenous Congress-CIG, with the National Sixth, with the Networks in Resistance and Rebellion, with Non-Governmental Organizations in defense of Human Rights, with collectives of Victims of violence, family members of the disappeared and those related, as well as with artists, scientists and intellectuals, for the purpose of letting them know about a new national initiative and inviting them to organize for it. And thus open a front of struggle for Life in our country.

5 – In a few more days, which we will communicate to you in due course, we will start our trip.  Now we are trying to vaccinate all of us so as not to bring health problems, and waiting for the so-called “third wave” of contagions in Mexico to go down a bit.

Then we’ll go to the Jacinto Canek Caracol, in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, and gather together there. From there we will move to Mexico City where the 177 delegates will go to the offices of the SRE that will tell us, face to face and in public, that we have no rights because of being “extemporaneous,” and that its “aspirationism” obliges it to delegate its responsibility to racist and ignorant bureaucrats; then, perhaps, Paris, France.

We’ll tell you the precise dates later, because it seems that, for the French government, we are also inopportune; also, of course, the new global wave of COVID 19.  Too bad, it must be globalization.

6 – We are a little nervous but happy because it’s not the first time that we will do something without knowing what awaits us. We thank from now on the Europe of Below, the National Sixth, the Networks in Resistance and Rebellion, the solidarity NGO´s on this and the other side of the ocean, and “The Hour of the Peoples Has Come” collective for the economic and in kind support that will permit realizing the air travel. The cost of the maritime travel and of the passports (between 10 and 15 thousand pesos each one, and for the continuous round trips to our towns to fulfill the Mexican State’s ridiculous requirements for being “extemporaneous”), was fully covered by the EZLN and left us without reserve funds. But it did not represent for any of the delegates, any personal expense.

7 – Regarding the national initiative, of which SupGaleano is in charge, I’m just letting you know that it will start with our call to participate in the so-called “Popular Consultation” on August 1, [1] and to answer “Yes” to the question about whether or not something should be done to comply with the right to truth and justice of those who have been victims due to actions and omissions of the Mexican State (that, and nothing else, is what the question indicates that the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation of the country that is called Mexico) elaborated. Those who up there above, in the “opposition” parties, resist the consultation, not only fear what will follow from it; it also terrifies them that the victims will recuperate their demands from the dastardly and perverse use that the ultra-right makes of their pain. Because the pain should not be an electoral business, and even less for such shitty purposes as the return to the government of those who are some of the ones mainly responsible for the violence and who before were only dedicated to accumulating paychecks and cynicism. That’s why the INE, which also considers we indigenous people as “extemporaneous” and denies us credential (ID card), is doing everything possible so that the consultation will fail, because it knows that it also has its part of the crime due to its exclusive policy for urban people with light skin.

You have to enter it, not looking towards above, but rather looking at the victims.  You have to convert the consultation into an “extemporaneous” consultation. This is so that, independent of those above, a mobilization for a Truth and Justice Commission for Victims, or whatever it’s called, can start; because there can be no life without truth and justice.

That’s all for now,

From the Mountains of the Mexican Southeast,

For the extemporaneous Zapatistas!

Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés, still in Mexico, July 2021

Translator’s Note:

[1] The National consultation is about whether a past president can be brought to justice after leaving office for crimes committed while in office. The consultation will be conducted by the INE (National Electoral Institute).


Originally Published in Spanish by Enlace Zapatista

Friday, July 16, 2021


Re-Published with English interpretation by the Chiapas Support Committee

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