As a result of the brutal killing of indigenous people in Acteal, Chiapas during the Christmas of 1998, we are including this article written by Enrique Lomas, regarding the guilty parties responsible for this act that shocked the world. At the end, we have listed other websites in the internet where you can find more complete and recent information on the massacre, and even more importantly, information about what you can do in order to help bring peace and dignity to the indigenous communities in Chiapas.
Beware of the Paramilitary Forces!
The state of Chiapas is once again in mourning. The massacre that occurred in the town of Acteal succeeded in filing the inhabitants of Chiapas with fear. Now they migrate to more secure places leaving behind their meager possessions and most painfully, their beloved land. While the suffering of the poor is multiplied, the paramilitary troops indulge in their achievements. These same forces have reaped fear and have scared away those who disturb their bosses who in turn reward them with a fixed salary.
In any part of the world, the paramilitary, as described by Luis Hernández Navarro in his article "The Water and The Fire," is a force that has the advantage of not being held accountable for its actions in comparison to a regular army. Their duty is to assassinate, they are contracted to instill panic in their enemies without caring about those who die, children, pregnant women, the elderly and finally, other innocent people from all four winds.
Regarding enemies, there is no doubt that the Mexican government considers the zapatistas and their followers as its true enemy. No one has questioned with as much force and recognized the motives behind the neo-liberal system of doctor Ernesto Zedillo's as the zapatistas. Not one political party nor any other organization has profoundly analyzed the causes or the negative effects on this country and more substantially on the indigenous villages than the Clandestine Indigenous Committee of the National Liberation Zapatista Army. A México in which there is room for all and where nobody is shortchanged is a proposition in direct contrast to the plans of President Zedillo's government which concentrates on protecting the great capitals against harm by the great working majorities particularly, the millions of indigenous people that still exist within the country.
Then it is explained why the federal government has refused to comply with the accords of San Andrés Larráinzar and has systematically been incapable of establishing a firm groundwork with the end of reaching peace in Chiapas. The federal government is in no way in agreement with the plans of the indigenous residents of Chiapas who would like to become autonomous while remaining Mexican nationals, to overcome their ancestral backwardness, to stop being exploited by farmers and ruffians, and to raise themselves above and towards progress as men who are exactly alike other men from any other place.
Curiously, the eternal exploiters of Chiapas are in accordance with the ideology of the Mexican ruling class. To them, everything must remain exactly as it has been, the indigenous people of Chiapas are nothing more to them than beasts of burden who lack the qualities for being considered true human beings. This is how the Chiapas natives were conceived by one of the great farmers of the beginning of the century, Manuel Larráinzar who shamelessly stated, "Why should I buy beasts when I have plenty of servants?" This belief is still held today by the rich, land and farm owners, the majority of them who are loyal PRI party followers to the bone. Then there exists reason to believe in the messages sent by the EZLN who hold the Federal government, local PRI affiliates, farmers, and land-holders in Chiapas responsible for the creation of paramilitary groups. It is they who benefit from the cruel actions of the paramilitary.
The proliferation of paramilitary groups has sunk the country of Colombia into an orgy of blood, death and desolation, in which impunity reigns supreme. The secretary of Justice and Peace of the Religious Conference of Colombia, Jesuit Javier Giraldo, notes, in a recent study titled "Colombia, that Genocide Democracy," the following:
"What can we do then? Impunity continues to be the key foundation of the model, with disastrous consequences on society; this model leaves untouchable the structures and forgives the conduct that make crimes possible, widening the path so as to allowing them to continue perpetually, and legitimate before society the conduct that radically destroys the coexistence of civilized human beings..."
The paramilitary groups that assassinated 46 indigenous people from Chiapas could be the beginning of the "colombization" that can devastate México. If the Federal Government continues to dodge its responsibility to bring about peace and ignores the devastating actions of the paramilitary troops, it will not shock us to see that soon, rather than later, a repressive police state can be declared in México as in Colombia, where a police state has practically made permanent in that troubled South America country.
What is happening in Chiapas, with the impunity of the paramilitary troops is a clear indication that the basic principle needed in order for the coexistence of civilized human beings is being destroyed. Of course, there is already a good number of suspects of the killings in jail, but still there are many doubts about whether they are the culprits or not.
The information from the people who are in the line of fire declare that these directly responsible for the killings to be: "60 assassins of the paramilitary group of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (the PRI), sponsored by the Federal and State governments," who armed with high caliber and modern weapons attacked without mercy the unarmed indigenous people in Acteal. The Federal and State governments are under suspicion and it is believed that even as far back as two years ago a conspiracy was agreed upon to convert the zapatista conflict into an internal war of the indigenous communities apparently motivated by religious, political and ethnic differences.
"We will destroy the zapatista seed!," is the war cry of the paramilitary denominated as the "Red Mask" ("Mascara Roja") Is it possible to put a stop to brutality of this size?
Get involved! Your taxes which are being funneled into México are drenched with indigenous blood. Do not permit the impunity and barbarity of the PRI-Government in México to continue. Get informed, visit these sites and find out what you can do.
Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas
National Commission for Democracy in México
¡Ya Basta! The EZLN Home Page
Frente Zapatista de Liberación Nacional
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