Posted by ricardo dominguez on February 04, 1997 at 11:11:48:
In Reply to: Re: ZapatistaPortAction posted by ricardo dominguenz on February 02, 1997 at 17:44:06:
President Zedillo's e-mail:
MESSAGE TO THE COMMITTEES IN SOLIDARITY, FROM
EZLN SUBCOMANDER MARCOS, JAN,1997.
We wish to send a message to the brothers and sisters in the
solidarity committees with the struggle of the zapatista people;
trying to explain the moment that we live today, January 13,1997,
after having responded negatively to a proposal from the government
that intended to dismiss the San Andres accords. I will try to
give the main points describing what has happened since April 1995-
when this peace dialogue started.
Since a year ago, in February 1996 and after 10 months of
negotiations, the first accords between the federal government
and the EZLN took place on the subject- within the schedule
for the dialogue- of "Indigenous Rights and Culture".
Finally it was able to be obtained, that the government accepted
to discuss the indigenous matter as something that is a national
problem, the problems of the indigenous groups all over the country,
even though it had tried to reduce the zapatista movement, to a local
In the negotiations on Indigenous Rights and Culture, what the EZLN
did was to open the negotiating table at San Andres, which is the
negotiating table with the government, so that representatives of the
56 ethnic groups or the 56 indigenous peoples that exist in Mexico,
great specialists and important personalities where able to express
their opinion, their demands.
The results of those 10 months of dialogue took final shape on
February 16,1996, in the first accords that were signed by the
EZLN and the federal government.
But since then, the government left it's fulfilment pending,
it's fulfilment meant reforms to laws at federal level in the
country, in the political Constitution of the United States
of Mexico and in regional and local laws in the states that
form the mexican federation. It did not make any effort
neither took any initiative for those accords to be fulfilled.
It was not until September 1996, when the EZLN decided
to suspend the dialogue.
It starts then once again; the fundamental problem in the process
of dialogue, that is; that the accords that are reached must be
The indigenous mobilizations had been growing since January 96,
when the Permanent Indigenous Forum took place and reached
it's climax on October 12 with the arrival of Commander Ramona
to the mexican capital and the National Indigenous Congress that
took place. And so, the Commission for Harmony and Pacification
-COCOPA- which is a commission supporting the process of peace
integrated by legislators from the mexican congress belonging to the
4 political parties who have representation there -being the PRD,
PAN;PRI; and PT- submitted a law initiative (Bill) of constitutional
reform in order to fulfil that part of the accords of San Andres.
After a meeting and negotiation between the EZLN and the COCOPA,
finally a document was drafted that, we considered does honour the
San Andres accords and would mean the honouring the accords on the
part of the government by including rights and indigenous culture
in the maximum law of the country, and so a reply was expected
from the federal government.
The federal government then revealed, that it's strategy up to that
point had just been to sign accords for the sake of signing, without
any intentions of honouring them. The different government agencies
that had been implicated in the dialogue of San Andres had not made
an in deph study of the implications of these accords. That provoked
a crisis that Mr.Zedillo, who has the title of chief of the executive
branch in the presidency of the republic, decided finally to resolve
the matter with his direct intervention and asked us for 15 days
in order to be able to make several consultations and present his
response to the initiative of the COCOPA.
The response arrived on December 19, last year, almost a month
ago, via the COCOPA. We analyzed that law initiative that the
government was presenting and that was not the one the legislators
had drafted from the signed accords. We consulted it with
compan~eros of the Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee,
also with specialists and with leaders of the National Indigenous
Congress of the main ethnic groups of this country and we saw
that the government proposal not only did not incorporate the
San Andres accords but it also meant a serious step back with
respect to what had been accomplished already in February of last
It meant that the government wanted to come back and re-negotiate
a year later, what had already been signed as accords, as if nothing
had happened, as if they did not arrived at any accords, as if their
signatures did not have any value. It also meant to take a serious
step back in what had been the demands of the of the indigenous
peoples, not of the zapatistas, but of all the indigenous peoples
of Mexico. And it meant what we qualify as a mockery.
After that study, we announced at a meeting with the COCOPA
and with the National Commission of Mediation - the head of which
is Bishop Samuel Ruiz- that we rejected that document, we gave
a technical and juridical explanation on why we were rejecting
the document and we explained politically what it meant.
The fundamental aspect of this, is that the government proposal
means three fundamental things:
1. It refuses to honour the accords. No process of peace, of
negotiations, can take place and move forward if one of the parts
does not fulfil what they promise or what it signs.
2. It refuses to recognize that the struggle of the indigenous
peoples needs to be recognized at national level, since up to that
point, to now, the indigenous are considered second or third class
citizens in this country.
3. It is about, one more time; a set back to the process of peace or
negotiation and prolong it with the thought of once again
seeking a military solution to the conflict under conditions
favourable to them as far as public opinion.
We can not accept a governmental proposal this way, we can not
make peace at any price, nor at the expense of the indigenous
pueblos, nor at the sake of credibility, nor at the sake of
legitimacy, and, above all, we can not sacrifice reason nor justice
that assists us, for political interests.
The government is tried to mock us one more time and has found
the zapatista reply; refuse their initiative.
This is important to understand well, because it is expected that
a very strong ( propaganda) campaign on the part of the government
on all media, specially at international level, trying to present the
EZLN as an intransigent political force that refuses to arrive at accords,
will take place.
We want to be well understood: our proposal is not just what
we have decided as zapatista commanders, not even as zapatista
communities, but it truly represent the interest of all the indian
pueblos in the whole country who have participated in it and
who have been consulted at national level.
The moment in which we live is very difficult, it is critical,
not only is the recognition of the struggles of the indian peoples
at stake, but what is at stake also is the ability to reach a peace
accord by the way of peaceful dialogue and negotiation.
If this is not resolved, the EZLN will not be able to support
a negotiation process, it would have to revise it's policy
with respect to the situation with the dialogue and outline
new measures that evidently would mean a total rupture
with the actual dialogue that maintains with the government.
We know that the reality of the committees in solidarity is
a difficult one, that there is a lot of work, that there are
your own struggles to attend to, your own organizations,
your own demands, your own struggle against neoliberalism....
But we want you to know that, as before, the support that
you may be able to give to the rebel communities and now,
to all the indigenous communities of the whole country, is very
We want you to know that your mobilization,
the pressure that you might be able to place, the knowledge
of what is really happening here and that this information
is broadcasted, spread out as much as possible against what
the Powers will do, is more important than ever.
We wish to request respectfully, another effort to support us,
we believe that reason is on our side, that history supports us,
that the truth supports us, and that we have a right for what
we are struggling for and that we are willing to anything.
We know that we can not do it alone, that like at other occasions,
the flag that we are uplifting is too big for us, but we also know,
that that flag is for humanity and against neoliberalism and
that our triumph or our defeat will also be the triumph or the defeat
of the social forces that in the world struggle against
We are certain that each one in his/her country and in it's social
sector will find the most adequate ways to mobilize, to support,
we know that our word will once again be listened to by you and
that we will receive from you the support that we now need.
And we expect that this support will be able to be translated into
results and that we soon will be able to see, compan~eros of
the leadership of the EZLN in the countries of Europe that we
will try to visit this year for the second Intercontinental
Be it with peace accord, be it in war, the decision of
the zapatistas to tightening the bonds of unity with the brothers
and sisters who struggle in the world, and we will do all we can
so that this Gathering (encounter) be to exchange experiences and
to recognize shared struggles and a shared enemy, not just
a solidarity gathering, even though, also of solidarity as we are
requesting of you at this moment.....
We wish for you to understand the seriousness of the moment and
that you give all of your support.
And from this moment, the gratefulness we expect to express to
you in this same year during one of the months we are able to arrive
around there, to express our gratefulness personally to all of you.
Taking this opportunity to salute the Encuentro (gathering) that
will take place in Barcelona as preparation to the Intercontinental
Encounter for Humanity and Against Neoliberalism and we ask
that you take us into account also on the decisions that you will
take, to know for a fact that our delegation will attend this
Encuentro to speak and to listen the word of the other brothers
and sisters of the 5 continents.
We expect that all will go well, we believe that we are being
consequent, the decision we have taken is very serious, the
moment is difficult, but we think things will come out alright
because we are doing what our ideals are dictating us.
END OF MESSAGE FROM SUBCOMANDER MARCOS
Produced by Ricardo Dominguez and Ron Rocco.
A composite work weaving a history of the Zapatista's use of netwars,invisible theater and the emergence of so called speed-democracies with text, graphics, sound bits in an enactment of the Rabinal-Achi, a Mayan classic of highland Guatemala.
Tuesdays: January 28, February 4, February 11, February 18, February 25, March 4
2:00 - 3:00 pm
Web Site: http://artnetweb.com/port/
SOFTWARE: RealAudio plugin, Pseudo Chat, and CUSeeMe.
With technical assistance from Dan Melmid and Pseudo Studios. Readings by Ricardo Dominguez, Galinsky and Ron Rocco. With design help from Zhang ga, and
Updates on Chiapas by the National Commission for Democracy in Mexico.
For more Information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Post a Followup