Thursday, August 21, 2008

'07-'08 Year in Review

Much love to all who have been a part of this space over the past two years!

As mentioned in the previous post, I'm taking a break from the writing here to put more focus on building up some of the other zapatista-inspired work in NYC and beyond... be in touch, stay in touch, and let's continue building this other way of doing politics -and this struggle- for another world that we know is possible and necessary.

Just like last year's round-up, here's a run down of Zapagringo's second season (July '07 to July '08). This blog is directly inspired by the zapatistas' Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle (or simply "the Sexta"), which they released just over three years ago. Much has grown and changed since then...

Our posts are broken down into "Zezta Internazional" (the international movement inspired by the Sexta), "Intersections" (things that resonate with the Sexta), "Other Campaign" (the transnational, Mexican movement inspired by the Sexta) and "Oaxaca" (where I began my journalism work for Narco News in the first days of '06):

* Zezta Internazional - the most common theme this year and last year, the primary focus of Zapagringo has been to help galvanize the international movement inspired by the Sexta - dubbed the "Zezta Internazional," although often also referred to as the "Intergalactic." Here you'll find information on affiliated organizations and events in NYC and throughout the USA 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 as well as some theoretical/educational work 1,2,3,4,5,6,7; of course there is coverage of the international encuentros that have taken place over the past year 1,2,3,4,5,6,7; posts regarding international responses to repression against the zapatistas and the Other Campaign 1,2,3,4,5,6; and some deeper explorations of that thing called "solidarity" 1,2.

* Intersections - Sometimes this "other" box can be the most interesting of all. Here we've got analyses of what capitalism is up to today 1,2,3,4; notes from gatherings that (in some way) fall a bit beyond the realm of the Sexta 1,2,3,4; assorted pieces from cultural workers 1,2,3,4; contemplations on fighting repression 1,2,3,4 and building solidarity 1,2,3; and -of course- some updates on Slingshot Hip Hop 1,2.

* Other Campaign - In September of '07 the zapatistas announced the suspension of their pending work in central and southern Mexico, which was originally intended to complete the second phase of their participation in building the Other Campaign. The cancellation was due to increasing threats against their communities in Chiapas. As a result, much of the Mexico-focused coverage over the past year has centered on the organizing against this repression 1,2,3,4,5; Meanwhile, I've continued reporting on the "Other Campaign on the Other Side" with Movement for Justice in El Barrio 1,2,3,4 and other groups 1,2,3; The international encuentros hosted by the zapatistas are also heavily attended by Mexican Other Campaign adherents so some of those posts are linked here as well 1,2,3; Here you will also find some posts related to zapatista spokesperson Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos 1,2 and some solidarity pieces 1,2.

* Oaxaca - Reconnecting face-to-face in Oaxaca this summer with some of the people I worked with there at the beginning of '06 was energizing and fruitful. My reportage on Oaxaca following the founding of Zapagringo was mostly centered on the work we were doing from here in NYC in solidarity with the struggle. This year I posted just one piece, "Brad Will in Context," a transcript of the speech I delivered at a memorial service for the murdered Indymedia journalist. Continued coverage of the struggle in Oaxaca can be found at El Enemigo Común and The Narco News Bulletin.


Anonymous said...

How about more consideration of the "Merida Initiative" known as Plan Mexico. It baffles people why more is not made of this here in the states by the "allies" operating under the rubric of the Zapatistas her in USA when more USA tax$ is going to kill them. Crazy blind spot.

RJ Maccani said...

Neither the zapatistas themselves, nor the Other Campaign, have taken a public stance on the Merida Initiative. I agree with you that this "Plan Mexico" will have horrendous effects and, unfortunately, not enough resistance has come from the USA or Mexico... and this is very concerning to many of us who have been paying attention to it.

I never envisioned or led on to anyone that this blog would be a site to organize around a specific campaign -such as stopping the passage of this plan- but there ARE places where this organizing is being coordinated, and I've linked to them... here's a post I put up regarding the Initiative.

Laura Carlsen, based in Mexico City, is doing excellent analysis of the Merida Initiative and is involved in the organizing to address it - I HIGHLY recommend her Americas Mexico Blog. Also check her and others out on this video spot on Inside USA.

No blind spot here, anonymous. Post your name next time and maybe we can have a conversation - otherwise I might just delete your future comments. I too am frustrated that a piece of legislation like this can successfully move through the halls of state power here in the USA and Mexico, but snarky comments left anonymously on a blog do less than nothing to stop this.

Anonymous said...

Right on. Also recommend this backgrounder on the Merida Initiative:

and the larger Security and Prosperity Partnership: