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(en) Mexico, Chiapas, Three EZLN communiques

From owner-chiapas95-english@eco.utexas.edu (Chiapas95-english)
Date Fri, 1 Dec 2000 02:07:45 -0500 (EST)

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> From: irlandesa <irlandesa@compuserve.com> Originally published in Spanish by the EZLN


Zapatista Army of National Liberation

November of 2000.

To the National and International Press:

Ladies and Gentlemen:

Here once again.  The letters are off, for the one who is now leaving
(fortunately), and an invitation for you to a press conference. We will do
everything we can to not get hung up on the time.

Vale.  Salud, and, no, you don't have to worry, Martha Sahagu'n is not going
to be here.

>From the Mountains of the Mexican Southeast.

Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos

Mexico, November of 2000.

(Zedillo's last moments!)

Yepa!  Yepa!  Yepa!
Andale!  Andale!  Andale!

Arriba!  Arriba!  Arriba!


First Act. -  Characters:  the political class, announcer, the headlines,
the public.

Place:  Mexico.  Date:  Prior to the elections of July 2, 2000.

(The curtain goes up.  There are a television and a radio on the stage,
turned up at full volume.  In the background, the headlines of a national
newspaper.  The audio on the TV and the radio is the same:  commercial
jingles.  The newspaper headlines are changing as they are signaled.)

The political class:  "We are in the media, therefore we exist.  We should
now confront our greatness with the most difficult test in the supreme art
of governing:  the ratings.  Call for the image consultants! (clapping of

bother of going to the voting booths will be eliminated, says its boss."

The consultant (entering from the right):  "Here I am (turning to the
public).  Modern political science consists not just of discovering which
product will have the best acceptance in the marketplace, but - and here I
have the science - in converting anything into something which resembles
that product as far as possible (he takes a complete makeup kit out of his
briefcase)  (He painstakingly apples cosmetics to the face of the political


The political class (sneezing):  "Achoo!  I think I'm allergic to this
dust.  What is it?"

Consultant (offering a handkerchief):  "Bless you!  It is the latest word
in fashion, it is democratizing dust."

The political class (sighing in resignation):  "Okay, anything to survive"


Announcer (entering hurriedly from the left):  "Quickly!  Hurry up!  The
sponsors are getting anxious!  We have to tape the program."

Consultant:  "The sponsors?  I thought the members of the audience would be
the ones who were anxious..."

Announcer:  "No, no, no.  The rhythm of politics is not set by clocks or
calendars, but by program times.  Hurry up!  We don't have much time
between the commercial breaks."

The political class (fixing itself up in front of a mirror being held by
the consultant):  "Good, how do I look?"

Consultant (smiling in satisfaction):  "Magnificent!  You are

The political class (to itself):  "Commercial breaks!  In the good old days
there were no breaks other those produced by the happy sound of the rattles
and slogans of "You can see it, you can feel it, the PRI is omnipotent."

(The consultant moves to one side).

Announcer:  "Lights!  Camera!  Action!"

Announcer (turning to the public):  "Welcome to our program:  'The Modest
Truth'!  Today, as a special guest, we have...the political class! (loud
applause is heard, the public is still, but an audio tape is keeping them
from the grueling task of having to applaud)."

The political class (turning to the announcer):  "Is my tie okay?"

Announcer:  "Tell us, political class, excuse me, can I call you 'tu'?"

The political class (fixing a decal which looks like a smile on its mouth):
 "Of course."

Announcer:  "Good, tell us, what can the audience expect from the upcoming

(The political class moves its lips, but no sounds at all come out).

Announcer:  "Very interesting!  Almost as interesting as these commercial
messages from our sponsors!"

The political class (to the announcer):  "Are we still taping?"

Announcer:  "No.  It went perfectly.  Now we're waiting for the consultant
to send us the audio of your response after he's done his marketing

The political class:  "Then can I leave now?"

Announcer:  "Yes."

(The political class leaves.  Someone comes and turns off the radio and
television.  The headlines disappear.  The curtain falls.  The audience
yawns.  An audio breaks into enthusiastic applause.)

Second Act -  Characters:  The political class, Se~ora X, a young man, Y; 
and Se~or Z.

Place:  Mexico.   Date:  July 2, 2000.

(The curtain rises.  There is only an empty street on the stage).

The political class (to itself):  "We see faces, we do not know votes."

Se~ora X:  "No."

The young man, Y:  "No."

Se~or Z:  "No."

The political class (to the public):  "We see faces, we do not know votes."

The public (breaking into the script, to everyone's shock):  "No!"

This play is a problem.  Those directing it are making a huge effort to
convince the audience that it's already over.  Not only is the public not
leaving the premises, they're also insisting on getting up on the stage. 
The director and the actors are tearing their hair out.  It is no longer
possible to know where the stage is and where the seats are.  Suddenly,
apparently without an agreement having been reached, and with stern
expressions on their faces, all the members of the public yell:  "Third
act!  Third act!  Third!  Let's begin."

Does the curtain fall?

What?  You didn't like it?  Well, La Mar did.  Okay, at least she smiled. 
What?  Dari'o Fo, Carballido, Gurrola, Savariego and Le~ero are going to
reprove me?  Let them do so.  They reproved Einstein for his hygiene (or
was it for his mathematics?).

The Sup in the box office.



Zapatista Army of National Liberation.

November of 2000.

To Se~or Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon.

Enroute to nowhere.

Planet Earth.

Se~or Zedillo:

Six years ago I wrote to you in the name of all zapatistas, welcoming the
nightmare.  Many now think we were right.  Throughout this administration,
your term of office has been a long nightmare for millions of Mexican men
and women:  assassinations, economic crises, massive impoverishment, the
illicit and brutal enrichment of a few, the selling off of the national
sovereignty, public insecurity, the strengthening of ties between the
government and organized crime, corruption, irresponsibility, war...and bad
jokes badly told.

Throughout your administration you have striven to destroy the indigenous
who rose up in defiance of everything that you represent.  You strove to
destroy them.

When you came to power you were free to choose how to confront the
zapatista uprising.  What you chose and what you did is now history.  In
your role as Commander-in-Chief of the federal army - and with all the
power given to the head of the Executive - you could have chosen the path
of dialogue and negotiation.  You could have given signals of de'tente.  You
could have carried out what you signed in San Andre's.  You could have
reached peace.

You did not do so.

You chose, rather, the double strategy of feigning a willingness to
dialogue and of continuing the path of violence.  In order to achieve that,
you tried to repeat the history of the Chinameca betrayal (February 9,
1995), you squandered thousands of millions of pesos trying to buy the
consciences of the rebels.  You militarized the indigenous communities (and
not just in Chiapas).  You expelled international observers.  You trained,
equipped, armed and financed paramilitaries.  You persecuted, jailed and
summarily executed zapatistas (remember Unio'n Progreso, June 10, 1998) and
non-zapatistas.  You destroyed the social fabric of the chiapaneco
countryside.  And, following the slogan of your putative child, the Red
Mask paramilitary group ("We will kill the zapatista seed"), you ordered
the massacre of children and pregnant women in Acteal on December 22, 1997.

We could understand why, being able to follow the path of dialogue, you
opted to make war against us.  It could have been because they sold you the
idea that you could take us prisoners, that you could defeat us militarily,
that you could achieve our surrender, that you could buy us, that you could
deceive us, that you could make the Mexicans forget us and our struggle,
that you could make people from other countries give up their solidarity
with the indigenous cause.  In short, that you could win the war against
us.  That we could understand.  But, Se~or Zedillo, why Acteal?  Why did
you order the assassination of children?  Why did you order your henchmen
to finish pregnant women off with machetes who, wounded or terrified, were
unable to escape the massacre?

What, in fact, did you not do in order to finish off the zapatistas?

But were they finished off?  They slipped through your ambush of February
9, 1995.  They rebelled once more against your failure to fulfill the San
Andre's Accords.  They escaped from your military siege as often as they
wanted.  They resisted your ferocious offensive, directed by the
'croquetas' Albores, against the Autonomous Municipalities.  Over and over
again they demonstrated with mobilizations that their demands had the
support of millions of Mexicans.  No, the zapatistas were not finished off.

And not only were they not finished off.  In addition, they spread
throughout the world.  Do you remember the times that you had to leave,
surreptitiously, through emergency exits, events being held in other
countries, while zapatista solidarity committees were protesting your
Chiapas policies?  Is there any ambassador or consul who has not reported
to you with desperation the actions carried out by international zapatistas
at Mexican government events and buildings abroad?  How often was your
foreign affairs service estranged because of the failure to carry out the
San Andre's Accords, for the militarization of Chiapas and the lack of
dialogue with the zapatistas?  And, when you ordered the expulsion of
hundreds of international observers, did solidarity actions throughout the
world diminish?

And what do you have to say to me about Mexico?  Instead of remaining
"limited to 4 chiapaneco municipalities," zapatismo spread to the 32 states
of the federation.  It became worker, campesino, indigenous, teacher,
student, employee, driver, fisherman, rocker, painter, actor, writer, nun,
priest, sportsman, housewife, neighbor, independent unionist, homosexual,
lesbian, transsexual, soldier, sailor, small and medium-sized business
owner, street vendor, handicapped person, retiree, pensioner, people.

Such were these 6 years, Se~or Zedillo.  Being able to choose between peace
and war, you opted for war.  The results of this election are obvious:  you
lost the war.

You did everything you could to destroy us.

We simply resisted.

You are going into exile.

We will still be here.

Se~or Zedillo:

You came to power through a crime which still continues unpunished.  And
your administration has been filled with unpunished crimes.  In addition to
carrying forward the privatization policies of your predecessor (and now
open enemy), Salinas de Gortari, you disguised as law that other crime
which is called FOBAPROA-IPAB, which involves not just poor Mexicans
"rescuing" the rich and making them richer, but also causing that heavy
burden to affect several future generations.

For more than 70 million Mexicans, the country's purported economic
solidity has meant poverty and unemployment.  While you have been
scrupulously attending to the invasion of foreign capital, medium and small
businesses were disappearing in the national market.  During your term of
office, the borders which divide government and organized crime were
erased, and the continuous scandals caused serious problems in the press: 
it was impossible to deduce which news stories belonged in the political
section and which in the crime blotter:  "suicides," former governors on
the run, prosperous businessmen who were "only" tortured, police officers
"specialized" in fighting organized crime taking over universities.

Today, the same as your predecessor, you are leaving with those who
worshipped you, served you, and who served themselves, having now become
your worst enemies, prepared to pursue you.  And so, Se~or Zedillo, you
will know, beginning tomorrow, what it is to be pursued day and night.  And
it will not last for only 6 years.  Because, beginning tomorrow, the line
will be very long of those who want to make you pay for what you owe them
and for insults.

It is clear that we were right when, 6 years ago, the zapatistas told you
welcome to the nightmare.  But, now that you are going, is it over yet?

Yes and no.

Because, for us, the nightmare with you is ending today.  Another could
follow it, or the dawn could finally appear, we do not know, we shall do
everything possible so that it will be the morning which flourishes.  But
for you, Se~or Zedillo, the nightmare will only continue...

Vale.  Salud, and it does not matter where you hide, there will be
zapatistas there as well.

>From the mountains of the Mexican Southeast.

Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos.

Mexico,  November of 2000.

PS -  By the way, before I forget:  a year ago, in September of 1999, you
sent us an open letter thorough your Secretary of Government (and current
candidate for the presidency of the PRI).  I believe the letter was called
"One More Step To the Abyss," "A More Ignominious Step," "A More Cynical
Step", or something like that.  In it, only 3 years late, your government
was supposedly responding, with lies, to the conditions which we had set
for the renewal of dialogue in September of 1996!  The open letter was an
attempt, more than deceiving us, of tricking national and international
opinion.  Something which it certainly did not achieve.  Whatever it was,
the lying letter told us we would be pleased with what was stated there,
and it invited us to return to dialogue.  It would be discourteous on our
part to let it go without a response, especially now that you are leaving
(finally!).  Excuse the delay, but allow me to take advantage of these
lines in order to respond.  Our answer is:  NO!

You are welcome.  



Communique' from the Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee,
General Command of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.

November of 2000.

To the National and International Press:

FIRST -  The Zapatista Army of National Liberation will publicly state its
position regarding the new federal government, headed by Se~or Vicente Fox,
and regarding the current situation of the war in the Mexican Southeast.

SECOND -  For such purpose, the EZLN is calling a press conference for
December 2, 2000, in the indigenous community of La Realidad, municipality
of San Pedro de Michoaca'n, Chiapas, at 4:00 PM.

THIRD -  In order to gain access to the site of the press conference,
communication workers will not need any special accreditation. 
Identification from the media for which they work will be sufficient.

FOURTH -  Police officers disguised as journalists may not enter, nor, by
decision of the community, may those from the television station which
destroys indigenous schools with their helicopters.


>From the mountains of the Mexican Southeast,
By the Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee -
General Command of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.

Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos.

Mexico, November of 2000.

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