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(en) Mexico/Turkey: Letter from John Ross*to Mehmet Tarhan** [tr]

Date Thu, 25 Aug 2005 22:31:07 +0300

To: <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Subject: Mexico/Turkey: Letter from John Ross* to Mehmet Tarhan** [tr]

Mexico City, August 2005 Dear Mehmet Tarhan You do not know me,
Mehmet, but I am your friend. You see, when I was your age, I
too said no to war and militarism. The Vietnam War had just
begun and I refused to be conscripted into the American army
because the Vietnamese were not my enemies.
So I was sent off to prison for a couple of years. I learned a
lot in prison. I learned how the poor fill the jails and the
rich go free. I learned how justice is bought and sold. I
learned that there can be no peace without justice too.
The wars that governments want us to fight are not our
wars. Their wars are fought for greed and gain and to
impose their will on the peoples of the earth. They
are imperialist wars.

Our wars are different. We fight to win justice and
bread, for land and liberty. But we do not want to be
soldiers. We are soldiers only so that there will be
no more soldiers, as my friend Subcomandante Marcos of
the Zapatista Army of Liberation here in Mexico says.

Mehmet, the day I left prison an official walked me to
the front gate. He did not want me to come to his
jail again. I had often protested mistreatment and
organized the prisoners against the war. "Ross" he
yelled at me, "you never learned how to be a

Mehmet, you must never learn how to be a prisoner.

When you come out of jail, we will have coffee

In solidarity,



* John Ross is a free-lance writer, poet and activist.
He is currently living in Mexico City.
Ross has intimately witnessed Zapatistas resistance
and also participated to their march towards the
Mexican capital in 2000.

** Mehmet Tarhan is an anarchist total/conscientious
objector who has been sentenced to 4 years in Turkey
because of rejecting military service.

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