Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Oaxacan Revolution vs Dirty War

While international headlines have been dominated by Isreal's war on Lebanon and Gaza and any coverage of Mexico has mainly centered around the fight for a full recount in the presidential elections, the popular movement in Mexico's majority indigenous state, Oaxaca, has been building towards a 21st Century revolution. It is a struggle that could now use our solidarity as the government intensifies a dirty war against it that has already claimed four lives and abducted eight leaders in the past week.

Alot has been going down in Oaxaca since I left there in early February. The June repression of a weeks-long teachers' strike led to a state-wide popular movement to kick out Governor Ulises Ruiz Ortiz and replace all state, regional and local governing structures with popular assemblies. This is possible partially because many communities in Oaxaca still run by usos y costumbres rather than the corrupt electoral process of the political parties. And most other people still hold this way of doing politics in their memories if not in their community, town or city...

Many have suggested that what is happening in Oaxaca is a glimpse of what the Other Campaign is building towards country-wide. Al Giordano of Narco News commented recently on a conversation he had in March with Mexican writer Alberto Hijar (professor of the Workshop for Socialism who once taught the man who Mexican authorities say is Marcos) wherein Hijar defined the political tendency of the Other Campaign as "anarchist, specifically, Magonista." Oaxaca was the home of Ricardo Flores Magón, a key figure in the Mexican Revolution, and his legacy is carried on by many groups organizing there today. On Wednesday and Thursday of this week, a national forum is taking place in Oaxaca to discuss the politics and realities of Oaxaca’s situation.

The popular movement has made Oaxaca ungovernable for the ruling parties in the past month. While the movement has not killed a single person in its resistance, the government and elites have begun to wage a dirty war against it. This is a critical moment for international solidarity...for more details go here.


cwm said...

Thanks, RJ. That was a good post.

RJ Maccani said...

So here's some talking points for letters and phone calls along with the phone numbers and addresses of officials...like embassy or consulate protests, the calls and letters let the government know that people will be watching what they do and, well, this can make a difference...

Please send appeals to arrive as quickly as possible, in Spanish
or your own language:
- expressing concern at the killing of José Jiménez Colmenares on 9 August in the City of Oaxaca during the protests and strikes led by the Teacher’s Union Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Educación (SNTE), Oaxaca sector (magisterial);
-calling on the authorities to carry out an independent and impartial investigation into the killing and for those responsible to be brought to justice;
- expressing concern at reported acts of intimidation against social activists and supporters of the teachers’ strike in Oaxaca city;
- calling on the authorities to guarantee the safety of the indigenous leader Alejandro Cruz López, other members of Asamblea Popular del Pueblo de Oaxaca, APPO
(Popular Assembly of the People of Oaxaca) as well as staff at the newspaper Noticias following the recent attacks against them;
- calling on the authorities to investigate the acts of intimidation and for those responsible to be brought to justice;
- calling on the authorities to ensure that the police do not use excessive force against the striking teachers and their supporters as highlighted by the by the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials and the UN Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials.


Governor of Oaxaca
Ulises Ruiz Ortiz
Gobernador del Estado de Oaxaca
Carretera Oaxaca, Puerto Angel, Km. 9.5
Santa María Coyotopec, C. P. 71254, Oaxaca, Oaxaca, MEXICO
Fax: + 52 951 511 6879 (if someone answers, ask "tono de fax, por favor")
Salutation: Señor Gobernador/Dear Governor

Attorney General of Oaxaca
Lic. Lizbeth Caña Calez
Procuradora del Estado de Oaxaca
Avenida Luis Echeverría s/n, La Experimental
San Antonio de la Cal, C. P. 71236, Oaxaca,
Oaxaca, MEXICO
Fax: + 52 951 511 5519
Salutation: Estimada Procuradora/Dear Attorney General

Federal Attorney General
Lic. Daniel Cabeza de Vaca
Procurador General de la República
Procuraduría General de la República
Reforma Cuauhtémoc esq.Violeta 75
Col. Guerrero, Delegación Cuauhtémoc
México D.F., C.P. 06 500, MEXICO
Fax: + 525 55 346 0983 (if a voice reply say: "me da tono de fax por favor")
Salutation: Dear Attorney General
Human rights organization in Oaxaca
Red Oaxaqueña de derechos humanos
Calle Crespo 524 Interior 4-E, Col. Centro
Oaxaca, Oaxaca, CP. 68000, MEXICO

and to diplomatic representatives of Mexico accredited to your country.

Renegade Eye said...

Thank you for that interesting post. The teachers set a good example for all.