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<nettime> Zapatista speeches, January 1st 2003 + 20,000 Zapatistas "take" San Cristobal,Jan 06

Zapatista speeches, January 1st 2003
Autor(a): Translations by Estacion Libre Fecha: 3:04am Sa'bado 04 Enero 2003

Speeches by the Commandancia of the Ejercito Zapatista de Liberacion
Nacional on the ninth anniversary of the uprising.

Comandante Bruce Lee

Through my voice speaks the EZLN. Brothers and sisters, I am going to say
some words for the indigenous people of Mexico. We the Zapatistas are the
ones who took up arms in the year 1994, for a just and dignified cause that
for this reason we have realized that for more than five hundred years we
have lived in exploitation and misery.

We the Zapatistas clearly state that our struggle is not only for us the
indigenous. It is for all the indigenous and non-indigenous. And I
especially direct our words to our indigenous people. We call for all to
truly organize. That it not be just words and that they truly show it in
their acts. It is now time that we all organize and that we form our
autonomous municipalities. We do not have to wait until the bad government
gives us permission. We should organize as true rebels and not wait for
someone to give us permission to be autonomous, with or without a law. It is
in this manner that our authorities in rebellion should function and in this
way be able to govern ourselves. Only like this can democracy inside a
municipality truly function.

But we also state that we must not only resist, not only receive crumbs, but
rather that we must resist all the mockeries and persecutions that persist
on the part of the enemy that we confront. It is these bad governments which
for hundreds of years have manipulated through governing. Today, that does
not matter to us. we are now a rebellious organization and we know how to
govern ourselves without needing to be taught. Let's not wait for a change
in the situation on the part of the powerful and their political parties
that are alert to what is coming or to the great consequences against all of
Mexico like NAFTA. On their part, the countryside, only benefits the rich.

They want to deceive us. These are complete lies because the truth is that
they want to destroy and exterminate us, but they won't. We wont allow it.
We will defend ourselves at all costs so that the land belongs to those who
work it and because of this we are right. Because we have the right to live
and our children and the children of our children, because to us, our lands
are our mother, because we will never sell our mother, much less allow some
son of a bitch to take them. Dead first before allowing it. Let's not fall
into the traps camouflaged as truth and carefully armed in order to not be
detected. But those dumb poor people and we the zapatistas cannot be
deceived much less conquered. Long live the EZLN! Long live the indigenous
people! Long live the campesinos!

>From the mountains of Southeastern Mexico, CCRI/CGEZLN Mexico, 1st of
January 2003.

Comandante Fidelia

Good night sisters. Through my voice speaks the voice of the EZLN. Sisters
of the fields and of the city, I'm going to tell you these humble words that
you're about to hear. It has been many years that we women have been
suffering discrimination, exploitation, and neglect at the hands of the bad
governments. This also happens in our homes but we administer it and know
how we live. We don't have education, we don't have food. Sisters, we wake
up at three in the morning to make food for our children and when we finish,
we have to go to work in the fields to help our husbands. We have to plant
the corn, we have to carry the sickle and the machete. After the product
comes, we have to cut the corn and everything that the fields give,
including coffee.

Sisters, for all these many exploitations and injustices, there are many
sisters that immigrate to the city but they are also exploited. There they
are used as babysitters, as washers, as moppers, they are even put in the
street to sell and to sell in the market. They are used to make tortillas
from three in the morning and are not allowed to leave until eight in the
evening. Then, they say "take these ten pesos because there is no money".
"The situation is difficult," that's what they say. Also, the women who go
to the big cities as accountants, secretaries, they go to the banks of the
rich, they go to the hospitals, they go to the insurance companies, to the
big factories, and also there they are exploited and discriminated against.
There are moments, when they are even raped.

Sisters, we will no longer allow this. Look, today, the man with the boots,
Se~or Vicente Fox, with his cabinet of lizards, is going to raise the
minimum wage. What are we going to do with that tiny bit, the 30 pesos that
our husbands earn? With that tiny bit, that increase in the minimum wage,
the women of the fields and the cities will begin to be deceived. One with
her ten chickens, one with her pig, with her two aluminum sheets, with that
opportunity to forever deceive those who have never wanted to awaken.

Sisters, I also want to make a call to women to organize so that we can
together defend our rights and also so we can have equality. Sisters, let's
no longer allow the government and the president of the Republic to continue
deceiving us because there are many things that fall upon us as women.

>From the mountains of the Mexican southeast. The EZLN. Thank you very much.

Comandante Omar

Through my voice, speaks the voice of the EZLN. Brothers and Sisters, I am
going to say a few words for the youth of Mexico and the world. Once again,
we have come to say that we are alive and that we continue. We have not
given up. We have not sold ourselves. To the contrary, we are stronger and
firmer. We have come to the plaza of San Cristobal to tell you the truth
about what is happening in our country and throughout the world. We have
also come to demonstrate that we are not divided, nor is there conflict
between us. Why would we fight amongst ourselves if we still have someone to
fight against. You are all aware of the lies perpetrated by those who are
known to be liars.

Youth of the world and of Mexico, students, unemployed youth, young artists
and athletes, punk rockers, young painters, chavos banda, young workers,
youth of different social sectors, youth of different countries of the
world, those who have struggled along with us, who have respected us and who
have worked hard, we continue to tell you to keep struggling wherever you
find yourselves and don't stop because we the Zapatistas will not forget you
because they will never defeat us.

Although they are killing us, others are being born. But, don't let yourself
be lied to. We are here with the small bases of support of our pueblos in
resistance to demonstrate and to expose the lies that have been told to all
of Mexico and to the world. Young people, do not let yourselves be fooled
any longer. Already, we have been lied to for too many years. What hopes do
you have with all the political parties if they only take advantage of your
votes and then later persecute you, they rob from you, or they threaten your
family? And, only for dancing and singing as you want to or for cutting your
hair or dressing as you like, only for that, they suspect you or accuse you
to be a terrorist or a criminal. They don't respect your customs or your

Don't let yourself be led by those vampires that only suck blood from the
workers and leave nothing. Let's fight to stop those parasites of Mexico and
of the world since we are the majority. Then, you can choose the path of our
future in this world where we will have a place for all of us. Let's talk
and unite our voice to say what we want and what we don't want so that we
will learn our rights. Although the bad governments create obstacles for the
struggle, the EZLN will continue forward.

Any political struggle that serves our people and the society of our country
and of the world, we are there with you, supporting you. It is worth it to
risk ourselves in the struggle even if they are killing us, so that we leave
a path in search of a better life for our children before we cease to exist,
so that we have a future and put an end to the unfulfilled promises and the
theft of all types of national natural wealth.

January 1st, 2003

Comandante Mister

Brothers and sisters, with my voice I speak the voice of the EZLN. I am
going to say a few words to all the people of the workld who struggle for
their liberation, to all who struggle for justice, democracy, and liberty
for the whole world. We are the Zapatista rebels. We struggle together with
you and your struggle is our struggle also. Because of this we say that we
will always struggle in Mexico and in the world until we obtain a dignified
place in the life of humanity. These bad governments think that we the
indigenous people don't thnk about the international. But we the indigenous
people, we do think the international, and we the indigenous people, we do
have the right to form opinions and decide what it is we want to do.

Also, these racist governments think that we the Indians don't know the
world. Know that we understand and know about your plans of death against
humanity and we also understand and know about the people struggling for
their liberation. We know the world and we even know Japan. Because we knw
the men and women from all the countries that have come to our communities
and they have talked with us about their struggles, of their worlds and
about everything they do. In their words we have traveled and we have seen
and known more lands than any intellectual. We know the Spanish, we know the
Basques, we know the Italians, the French, the Catalonians, the Americans,
the Argentinians, the Austians, the Chileans, the Nicaraguans, the
Guatemalens, the Koreans, the Japanese, the Peruvians, the Canadians, the
Norweigens, from Belgium, Swiss, German, Greece, from England, from
Australia, from Africa, and others that I cannot recall now.

Because of this, we say to the powerful of the world that if they unite to
globalize with the globalization of death, then we too are going to
globalize for liberty.

We tell our brothers from the Basque country, Don't believe what the bad
governments say. We tell them that they Subcomandante Insurgent Marcos says
that he supports the political struggle of the Basqo pueblo, he wants to
tell all the Zapatista men, children, elders and women, that we support them
in their struggle because because their reclaims are of justice, liberty,
and democracy. We are not ashamed to support the just struggle of a pueblo
that struggles like you, the Basque pueblo. We are even less afraid to speak
of the struggle because we the Zapatistas, if there is anything we do not
possess, its fear. Because we are dignified, we deserve a dignified place in
the world.

It is not important to us that the threats come from where they come. To
speak the truth is our duty and we know to say that it does not make us
fearful to speak of political and social struggles in the world just as we
speak of the struggle of the rebellious pueblo of Argentine. And here we
send a greeting from us, the Zapatistas. Also to the disobedient Italians
and to all the brothers and sisters Zapatistas in Europe and the world.

Also we raise our indigenous voice to ask respect to the sovereignty of the
country that is Venezuela. And that Venezuelans decide what the want without
the meddlings of other countries. In Mexico, we send a special greeting to
the brothers and sisters of the autonomous municipality of Atenco. Also to
the compa~eros and compa~eros of the FZLN, and to all the rebellious
teachers and to all farmers, our brothers in struggle for the land, and to
the workers and employees.

Also we tell all you brothers and sisters of the world that we do no have to
ask perission from anyone because to do good you do not need permission from
anyone to tell the truth. Because of this, rebellious brothers and sisters
of the world, we support the struggle of the pueblo and we are fighting for
a dignified place. We are fighting for democracy, the liberty and the
justice for all the pueblos and nations of the world. Because the life of
humanity is sacred and as such we are deserving of having a more just life,
more dignified and human than other place you can find in the world. Because
the resistance has demonstrated far and wide that this world that we have
been able to survive by organizing ourselves as we see fit and we have never
asked anyone permission for what we have to do and much less what we are
going to say.

Brothers, fighters of all the world the insults of the bad governments in
the world have not been few. They say they fight for human rights but this
is not true because those bad governments fight for death and disappearance,
for hunger and misery, with illnesses they themselves created. That is how
they want to kill us, and that is how they want to disappear us in the life
of humanity. To those bad governments and their successors we say that we
will never be able to finish us. Not by hunger or sickness and much less
with its projects and treaties. Rebellion has existed in all of the
existence of humanity. The Zapatistas, our duty is to fight for humanity and
against the plans and treaties of global neaoliberalism that don't know or
respect borders. SO this os how our struggle for justice and liberty has to
be. This is why we are going to fight for life and humanity, and against
death. We are going to fight for our true human rights against oblivion. We
are going to fight for our existence against extermination. Like this we are
going to continue fighting with the true word. We will continue like this
until all of us together attain and conquer a place for all of us in the
life of humanity. That is why brothers and sisters of all the world we ask
you to sustain your struggle and to continue fighting for as long as
necessary. Because we the Zapatistas are not going to betray all the
political and social fighters of all the world, and to fight in the world we
will not ask anyone permission, much less accept that the government tell us
what we should do or what we are going to say. But it is certain that we
support all the social and political fighters of the world, because we have
hope that all the struggles of the world, that we're going to win because
our demands are just. Long live Argentina Rebelde! Long live the political
struggle of the Basque people! Long live the rebels of the world! Long live
the EZLN.
>From the mountains of Southeast Mexico
Mexico, 1 January 2003.

Comandante Esther

Good evening comrades from the Zapatista bases of support. Brothers and
sisters of Mexico and the world, from my voice speaks the voice of EZLN. We
would like to say a couple of words to Mr. Vincente Fox and Mr. Luis H.
Alvarez. To Mr. Fox, I only want to say that the Mexican people are
disillusioned by your deceptions. In the beginning, they thought that you
were going to change the current situation and that you were going to fight
for peace with the indigenous people. You said that you were going to
resolve the problems, primarily that of the EZLN struggle. That in 15
minutes you were going to be able to change the situation of the Mexican
people, but that was a lie. You do not care about the people that worked to
get you into power. What matters to you is to get along with the rich and
not the poor. You go travel around to foreign countries telling them that in
Mexico there is peace and the to have solved all of Mexico problems. Where
is the peace? Is creating peace that the removals that your are responsible
for in Montes Azules? What you want is to not provoke war so that the
mountains can belong to foreigners. We want to tell you Mr. Fox and Mr. Luis
Alvarez, the apparent peace commissioner, and you are really only Fox's
commissioner to provoke division and disillusion in the people of Mexico.
Just like Rabasa did. You send more projects from Procampo and Progresa to
the communities so that they would stay quiet and so that they do not speak
against you and say that, we the EZLN are accepting projects just because we
allow you o pass through our territories. You also say that we are divided,
that we the comandantes have given in and that the EZLN is divided. And also
with Mrs. Calderona, a senator of the republic, who lies, you say that el
Sup Marcos is not worth anything and that every Zapatista is off on their
own. But I tell you clearly, Mr. Alvarez and Mrs. Calderon, that you are
both liars and that you two solely publish your lies to the media because
you believe the Mexican people and the people of the world will believe you.
You also believe that everyone is on their own without knowing the truth.
And that is what you want so that it can become easier to disillusion and
finish with the indigenous people and non indigenous people because what you
want with Fox is to win and have better with your wife without caring about
those on bottom.

We want to say that the Mexican people are no longer asleep, nor are we the
EZLN going to be as a leaper staying quiet with all the insanities that they
say. Do you really believe that everything you say will win? Well no. Here
we are again, the Zapatista to tell you out loud that no Zapatista community
will accept the governments projects or the trash that government sends as
supposed help. Know that were do not sell our dignity for crumbs because we
know that our struggle is just for everyone.

Where are you hiding, Mr. Alavarez? You say there are no longer Zapatistas,
that we are now few. That we the commanders are now lost. Do you not see,
Mr. Luis? Do you need your glasses to see us well? If you want we can bring
all the Zapatistas here but they do not fit because we are so many. Here we
are today, a small part. Many could not come for lack of resources. We are
the commanders, here we are. We are never going to give in and we are not
going to ask permission for what we do. I tell you clearly Luis H. Alvarez,
that you could have chosen to be like Macho or like Rabasa and you chose to
be like Rabasa who only charges money an is no good for peace.

If you really fell like men come and tell us face-to-face what you
published, that we commanders are no longer here. We come to tell the truth
and to defend our word. Let's see if you come to defend your and Calderona's
lies. Alvarez I'm telling you that we will not allow you to enter our
controlled territory. Before we let you enter because we thought that
because you were older you could think well and because before, you had
fought for democracy we allowed you to enter before because we thought that
like that you would learn from the indigenous people and learn to respect
your counterpart. Burt now we have seen that you only have your sneakily
politician ways which are the lies you have in your mouth.

We, the Zapatistas did not take up arms nine years ago to beg. We took up
arms to demand democracy, liberty and justice and that is what I came to say
to you.

Long live the EZLN!
>From the mountains of Southeast Mexico
Mexico, 1 January 2003.

Comandante David

Good night to all. Through my voice speaks the voice of the EZLN. Brothers
and sisters we are going to direct some words to all those who are part of
the EZLN squadrons. (Tzotzil) Comrades, bases of support, representatives of
the communities and regions present in this great demonstration. (Tzoztil)
We commend everyone for your decision and courage to have mobilized without
caring about the consequences. (Tzozil) Comrades, of all the communities, of
all the Zapatista regions, and from anywhere that you find yourself but that
could not come, that could be present in this demonstration for many reason
we salute you. (Tzoztil) We wish that you continue forward with firmness in
the struggle. (Tzoztil) To the military comrades, men and women insurgents,
militia people of all fronts in your respective military post, those of your
names to the Revolutionary Clandestine Indigenous Committee (CCRI), we, the
General Command of the EZLN salute you militantly. Receive our special
congratulations for having completed nineteen years of existence and now
nine years of war. We hope that you will stay firm in your convictions and
in your revolutionary moral. (Tzoztil) Special greetings to our comrade
bases of support that have resisted the political, economic, and ideological
blows of the government. (Tzonzil) Those who suffered and resisited the
presseure and aggressions of the military and the paramilitaries. (Tzotzil)
that have suffered the displacement, the persecutions, the imprisonments and
the fall or your family members in this struggle. (Tzotzil) Greetings to all
the Zapatista Civilian comrades wherever your find yourselves in the fields,
in the cities and in whatever state of our country and in other countries of
the world.

Comrades, like all of you know, since the executive powers, legislative and
judicial, approved a law against the Indigenous people of Mexico, we the
Zapatistas have refused that law and as a result of that we have lived a
period of silence and of resistance. Almost two years have passed since our
initial indignation with the betrayal of the governmental powers. Those
powers and their allies have taken advantage of our silence, to say a bunch
of lies and calamities. They have prepared political and economic strategies
covering them up as projects of development in the indigenous communities.

But in reality those "supports" the present government spoke about are no
more than crumbs, like always. It is no solution for the misery in which we
live and much less is it a response to the just demands of the Indigenous
peoples. Our silence has been used to say that the Zapatistas are finished,
that we divided, that the leaders have given up and have sold themselves and
that leadership has been left alone, and that the Zapatista communities have
gone with the government. Through all of these sneaky ways the government
and the political parties have used to attempt to confuse the communities,
to debilitate the struggle and the indigenous resistance. To make us happy,
so that we settle, they offer words and small contributions to a few
communities. For the New Year they can say that now we are at peace because
the Zapatistas accepted the support of the government and abandoned the
ranks of the EZLN. But, if it is so, then who are we that are present here
today? The thousands of men and women, youth and children and elders who are
here today, demanding, aren't they Zapatistas? Aren't they also Zapatistas,
the dozens of thousands of people who stayed in their communities, who could
not for lack of financial resources and transportation could not come to
this demonstration. Are these thousands of men, women, youth, elders and
children Zapatista fighters willing to give themselves? I ask you, are you
willing to humiliate yourselves, before the people who have for centuries
humiliated you, ravaged our wealth, have discriminated us, forgotten us and
tramples our dignity. I ask you sisters and brothers are your willing to
sell yourselves for crumbs and to betray the blood of our fallen ancestors
and of our heroes and of our martyrs. I ask you compa~eros, are you willing
to sell yourselves? Are you willing to leave the struggle while we have
gotten no real solution to our just demands? Are you willing to sell your
dignity and to leave the inheritance of only hunger, misery and forgotten
existence for our children? Compa~eros and compa~eros, today completes nine
years of our armed uprising and breaks the silence that we have had for
almost two years. The hour to speak has arrived once again and to tell the
truth about ourselves the Zapatista indigenas. We do not raise arms to ask
for charity, so that they keep laughing at us, like the government until now
has done and offer us lies and crumbs to buy our consciences.

Our indigenous Zapatistas pueblos do not nee government support with its
negotiations or to send us food. What we, the Zapatistas, ask for and demand
is they constitutionally recognize the rights, autonomy and
self-determination of all indigenous pueblos of Mexico. We demand to be
treated with equality and justice. Therefore we don't accept that they make
fun of us or that they shamefully offer us their "crumbs" or their garbage.
We the indigenous Zapatistas are impoverished but not beggars and not
delinquents. We are rebels against injustices and forgetfulness. We have
dignity and we have reason to struggle with our "arms" and this is what we
want the whole world to understand, that the indigenous are not animals that
the rich and powerful throw their garbage to. Because we are pueblos with a
long history.

Because of this we are willing to follow the struggle until we see that all
the indigenous pueblos in our homeland are respected. And taken into account
as pueblos and as citizens with all of the rights. We want to tell all of
Mexico and the World that what began a few days ago through the voice of
Subcomandante Marcos. It is a risky initiative but we think that it is worth
it to attempt it for the good of all. Because it is still an initiative of
pacific solution that we are attempting to open a door that the Mexican
politicians have closed us behind. This and other things we will continue to
talk through our spokesperson Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos. Comrades, we
would like to tell you that our struggle has just begun. That is why on this
ninth anniversary of our uprising we come to this center of exploitation
that is San Cristobal de las Casas to protest and to tell the truth. For
this we had to cross checkpoints and break military fences to come and say,
"we are here". We are here with sincere and truthful words. We reaffirm our
promise to continue to struggle for democracy, liberty and justice for all.
Comrades since January 1st, 1994 we have lit a small spark of rebellion and
dignity, and this light, the powerful have tried to burn out. But they have
not succeeded nor will anyone succeed to put it out, because it is the light
of hope for all of the Indians and non Indians of Mexico and the World. That
light symbolizes a force and protection in this larger struggle for
democracy, liberty and justice. That is why we should make that light bigger
and stronger so that the people and nations can see that we have maintained
alone this Zapatista rebellion.

Comrades, prepare yourselves in this moment to light your flames.

Comrades, to all of those in the back making the bonfire, we have not yet
given the order to light the ocote wood. Comrades, wait, we will give the
order soon.

Comrades, please lift your machetes and light your fire.

Comrades, keep your ocote on and lift you machete or ax and then we will
give you directions. For right now please light your fires.


Originally Published in Spanish by La Jornada
Mexico City, Thursday, January 2, 2003
Front Page


The EZLN Commanders Break Silence and Take San Cristobal

More than 20,000 Indigenous ask president Vicente Fox where is peace?
- Warn Peace Commissioner that they will impede his entry into
controlled territory

BY: Hermann Bellinghausen, Correspondent

San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas, January 1, 2003.

In the most numerous concentration up to now of Zapatista Army of
National Liberation (EZLN) support bases, more than 20,000 indigenous
campesinos literally took the city of San Cristobal this evening. Coming
from all regions of the state, some 20,000 machetes in the hands of
tzotzils, tzeltals, chols, tojolabals and zoques rang like bells through
Avenida Insurgentes during the more than three hours that it took to
fill the central plaza of this city in a column that seemed unending.

The demonstration concluded with a concentration presided over by the
commanders of the Zapatista movement. Commanders Esther, David, Tacho,
Fidelia, Omar, Mister and Bruce Lee directed themselves to the multitude
with seven speeches which, if any doubt remained, completely broke the
EZLN's almost two years of silence.

Through them, the EZLN's Indigenous Revolutionary Clandestine Committee
repeatedly backed up subcomandante Marcos. "We say to you that when
subcomandante Marcos says he supports the people's political struggle,
all the Zapatista men, women and children say it," expressed Comandante

Commander Esther directed "a few words" to Mr. Vicente Fox: "I just say
to you that the people are disenchanted with the your deceipt."

After mentioning the threats of eviction in the Montes Azules, wrapped
in the same white flowered shawl which she showed to the world from the
Congress of the Union almost two years ago, the commander asked: "Where
is the peace? Isn't it important to you that the spirit of those that
made you president is spoiled?"

A few days before, the indigenous were saying "They are going to have to
widen the streets of the city of San Cristobal so that we can fit."
Tonight we see that it was no boast: the Zapatistas overflowed the
streets and did not fit in the plaza of the cathedral. According to
experts, it holds 18,000 people. Today it was not sufficient. Thousands
of natives had to stay in the adjoining streets during the whole

The demonstration, more valiant than most, concluded around midnight
with thousands of lighted ocote torches, illuminating the air red with
their flames. And they again sounded the machetes, woodcutting axes,
hoes and other work tools.

Thousands of indigenous people coming from Los Altos began to congregate
since morning on the outskirts of this city, but the march started at
six in the evening, when the last contingents arrived from the
Aguascalientes of La Realidad, which took 15 hours by road.

The chants, which were adding themselves all day to the banners and
signs, were chorused nonstop this evening by the Zapatista support
bases. "The three powers of the government are racist. Fox just like
Zedillo. The PAN is like the PRI." Another time they chorused: "No to
the terrorism of Bush and Bin Laden" and they proclaimed their support
for the political struggle of the Basque people.

They emphasized greetings and admiration for the "rebels of Argentina,"
and they proclaimed the "globalization of rebelliousness and dignity."
They also supported the struggle of Salvador Atenco (without the San),
asking: "don't stop struggling, because the Zapatistas want freedom," as
well as the disobedient Italians. In Italy, thousands of them were
joined together this evening to follow directly the Zapatista
concentration in San Cristobal.

Shouting vivas to subcomandante Marcos, the CCRI, the autonomoous
municipios and the EZLN insurgents, the demonstrators sent a clear
message which commanders David and Omar would make explicit around
midnight: "We came to tell you that we are here and we continue alive.
We have not surrendered. We are not disunited nor fighting. Why would we
have to fight among ourselves if we still have those who fight us."

Calling time and again to the "bad government" of Vicente Fox, the
Zapatistas from about 40 autonomous municipios expressed strong
criticisms of the political parties, which because of their respective
interests refused to approve the Cocopa law, "because it is not
convenient for them that there be peace in Chiapas."

In what was the harshest of the speeches, Commander Tacho called PAN
Senator Diego Fernandez de Cevallos an "advocate of criminals," and
accused him of opposing peace in Chiapas "because he wants to be
president, even before 2006," in place of Vicente Fox, "and to convert
the country into a big plantation."  About PRI Senator Manuel Bartlett,
Tacho said that he was opposed to the Cocopa law and to peace to make
the U.S. authorities happy, which are investigating him for drug

In relation to the PRD, he said that this party supported the so-called
Bartlett-Fernandez de Cevallos-Ortega Law only in the Senate "in
exchange for the governorship of Michoacan," and pointed out that "if
only one senator that had said no to the language," the law would have
had to be discussed again."

Esther, directing herself to the peace commissioner, Luis H. Alvarez,
told him: "you were able to choose between being like Camacho or like
Rabasa, and you chose being like Rabasa," and she announced that the
EZLN communities no longer will permit him passage through their con-
trolled territories, because he gives out money in the communities" to
divide them, and he says that the Zapatistas are "divided" and "other

In its severe balancing of "how things are in the world," the general
command of the EZLN did not fail to denounce TV Azteca's operation
against CNI, Channel 40, recognizing that the Channel 40's commenta-
tors were not always objective in relation to the Zapatistas, Commander
Tacho expressed, nevertheless, the Zapatistas' backup of the workers of
the attacked TV station. "We cannot see how the work of reporting is
impeded and remain quiet."

Commander Fidelia directed a moving message to the "exploited, scorned
and violated" women, and Commander Mister vindicated the indigenous
right to know the world situation, "to have opinions and to decide."  He
accused the "racist" government for blaming them of not understanding
the world and not having the right to speak, for example, about the
struggle of the Basque people.

Before the "globalization of death" that the powerful impose, Mister
proclaimed the right of everyone to "globalize freedom."

To the Zapatistas, he said, "we are not afraid to speak of the political
struggle of the Basque people," and he expressed special backup for the
self-determination of Venezuela and to the "rebel people of Argentina."

The city of San Cristobal received the Zapatista takeover in silence,
with doors and windows closed, and its residents heard, barely showing
themselves, the ringing of the machetes and the thousands of voices
saying that they will not surrender.  As Commander Bruce Lee said: "We
do not have to ask the government for permission to be free," and
defending the universal human right of defiance, he closed: "We don't
have to ask for anyone's permission."

This evening's Zapatista demonstration is, also, the affirmation of
belonging to the world and the most profound citizen force of the modern
Mexican indigenous peoples.  They know that they are capable of teaching
Mexico and the world, and not only of learning.

Upon filling the San Cristobal Plaza this evening, a voice at the
microphone was asking: "Companeros, let's see if those who are more
forward can advance."  It is a good expression as a metaphor of what
just happened this evening, which just ended in flames and smoke in the
plaza, and an echo of voices and work tools (or like those of the
campesino and indigenous struggle).  The civil indigenous Zapatista is
mature fruit.  The racism of the powerful ones no longer can detain
them.  "This struggle is just beginning,"  David said, in tzotzil and
castellano, in the last speech of the Zapatista commanders.

And the night was inundated with torches.  "Let's make a big light so
that the people may see that we maintain the rebelliousness (defiance),"
said David concluding.
Translation by:
Chiapas Support Committee
P.O. Box 3421
Oakland, CA  94609
(510) 654-9587
email: cezmat {AT} igc.org

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