ZAPATISTA ARMY OF NATIONAL LIBERATION.
December 31st, 2014 and January 1st, 2015.
Compañeras and compañeros, family members of the students from Ayotzinapa murdered and disappeared by the evil government of this capitalist system:
Compañeras and compañeros of the Indigenous National Congress:
Compañeras, compañeros, and compañeroas of the Sixth Declaration in Mexico and in the world:
Compañeras and compañeros Support Bases of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation:
Compañeras and compañeros comandantes and comandantas, leaders of the Indigenous Revolutionary Clandestine Committee-General Command of the EZLN:
Militia compañeras and compañeros:
Insurgent compañeras and compañeros:
Through my voice speaks the voice of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.
May all who are and are not present receive the greeting of the Zapatista men, women, boys, girls, and elderly.
May the step, the voice, the ear, the look, the collective heart from below and to the left, be welcome.
We have as guests of honor the family members of those who we are missing in Ayotzinapa, in Mexico, and in the world.
We are grateful at heart for the honor which they give us by being present here with our Zapatista peoples which we are.
Their silences and words honor us also.
Their pain and their rage make us family.
We the Zapatistas do not lose sight of nor close our ears to the sorrow and the anger of Ayotzinapa which the family members show us and speak of.
The sorrow because of the deaths and disappearances. The anger because of the evil governments which hide the truth and deny justice.
What we know and remember in this struggle for Ayotzinapa is that only as organized peoples are we going to find the truth.
Not only the truth which disappeared in Ayotzinapa, also all the truths which have been kidnapped, imprisoned, and murdered in all corners of planet Earth.
Over that now-absent truth we will be able to build justice.
Because we the Zapatistas, think that we must no longer trust the evil governments which there are throughout the world.
Those evil governments which only serve the great capitalists.
Those evil governments which are only employees of capital. The foremen, stewards, and corporals of the great capitalist plantation.
Those evil governments are never going to do any good for the peoples.
It does not matter how many words they say, those evil governments do not command, because the head honcho is neoliberal capitalism.
That is why we must not believe the evil governments at all.
Everything that we want as peoples we have to build among ourselves.
Just as the family members of the murdered and disappeared from Ayotzinapa are building their search for truth and justice.
Just as they are building their own struggle.
We want to tell the fathers and mothers of the disappeared compañeros not to rest, to fight, and not to stop fighting for truth and justice for the 43.
The struggle of the Ayotzinapa family members is example and nourishment which they give to those of us who want truth and justice on all the planet’s soils.
And so we are to take the example of the fathers and mothers, of leaving the home and the family to work and encounter other families who have their same pains, rages, and resistances.
Hope is not in an individual man or woman, as they make us believe and say “vote for me” or “come to this organization because we are going to win the fight.”
That’s what they say.
But, what fight? If we know that what they want is to rise to power and then later they forget about everything and everyone.
That is why it is better for us to take the example of the family members of Ayotzinapa, of organizing.
It is necessary to build and grow organization in each place where we live.
Let us imagine how the new society could be.
For that we have to study how we are in this society in which we live.
We the Zapatistas say that we are in a society where we are exploited, repressed, disappeared, and plundered by centuries of bosses and leaders, and as of today, the end of 2014 and beginning of 2015, society remains this way.
Since then they have wanted to cheat us telling us that they, those from above, are the baddest of badasses and that we are good for nothing.
That we are stupid, that is what they tell us.
That they know how to think, imagine, create, and that we are only peons in what they do.
“To hell with that!” “Enough!” That is what we the Zapatistas said in the year 1994, and so we had to govern ourselves autonomously.
Like so we the Zapatistas see that the disappeared students’ family members’ effort of work and struggle with rebellion and resistance with dignity, it is that they are calling us to organize so that the same does not happen to us.
Or so we may know what to do before the same happens to us.
Or what to do so that what happened to them because of this capitalist system which we are in never happens to anyone.
Because the family members of Ayotzinapa have explained it very well. Like good teachers the family members have explained that the one responsible for the crime is this system by way of its foremen.
And the system too has its schools for foremen, stewards, and corporals, and those schools are the political parties which only seek positions, posts.
There is where the evil governments’ servile ones are prepared, there they learn to steal, to cheat, to impose, to command.
From there emerge those who force these laws to be fulfilled with violence, who are the presidents, governors, and mayors, with their armies and police.
From there emerge those who judge and condemn those who do not obey these laws, who are the judges.
And well we see that it does not matter if those foremen, stewards, and corporals are men or women, if they are white, black, yellow, red, green, blue, brown, any color.
The work of those above is to not let those of us below breathe.
At times the one who orders to kill has the same skin color as the one who is killed.
At times the murder and the victim have the same color and language.
And neither the calendar nor the geography matters.
What the struggle of the family members and compañeros from Ayotzinapa has made us think is that those who kidnap, murder, and lie are the same.
That those who preach lies are not going to seek the truth.
That those who impose injustice are not going to make justice.
And it is that we think that it cannot continue like this forever, everywhere and at all levels.
And this is what the family members from Ayotzinapa teach us, that it is better for those of us who suffer from this disease which is called capitalism to seek and find each other.
Hand in hand with the family members of Ayotzinapa we seek the disappeared which there are in all the worlds which we are.
Because those disappeared and murdered every day and at all times and in all places are truth and justice.
Hand in hand with the family members of the 43 we understood that Ayotzinapa is not in the Mexican state of Guerrero, but rather is everywhere in the world of below.
Hand in hand we understand that the common enemy of the countryside and of the city is capitalism, not only in one country but throughout the world.
But this capitalist world war encounters, in all corners, people who rebel and resist.
These people in rebellion and resistance go along organizing according to their own thought, according to their place, according to their history, according to their way.
And in these struggles of rebellion and resistance they go along meeting each other and making their agreements to achieve what is desired.
They meet but do not judge each other.
They do not enter into competition to see who is better. They do not ask each other who has done more, who is going forward, who is the Vanguard, who commands.
What they ask each other is if there is some good in what is capitalism.
And as the response which they find it’s that there is NOTHING good, but entirely the opposite, it creates for us a thousand forms of evils, so it is logical that we have a thousand forms of response to this evil.
In other words, the question goes on to be, what is to be done to rebel against evil? How does one resist so that that evil of capitalism does not destroy? What is to be done to rebuild what was destroyed in a way that it is not the same but better? How are the fallen to be raised? How are the disappeared to be found? How are the prisoners to be freed? How do the dead live? How are democracy, justice, and freedom constructed?
There is no one response. There is no manual. There is no dogma. There is no creed.
There are many responses, many ways, many forms.
And each one goes along seeing their results and learning from their own struggle and from the struggles of others.
While those from above enrich themselves with payment, those from below enrich themselves with experiences of struggle.
And, sisters and brothers, we tell you clearly that we the Zapatistas have learned from watching you and listening to you, and from watching and listening to the world.
It has not been, nor is it, nor will it be from an individual that the gift of freedom, of truth, of justice, is going to arrive to us.
Because it turns out, friends and enemies, that freedom, truth, and justice are not gifts, but rights which must be conquered and defended.
And collectives are what achieve them.
We already are the peoples, men, women, and others of the countryside and the city, those who have to have freedom, democracy, and justice in-hand for a new society.
That is what the fathers and mothers of the disappeared compañeros are posing to us.
We will have to struggle with a thousand ways to conquer this new society. We will have to participate with different levels of commitment for that new society.
We all must accompany the family members of Ayotzinapa in the struggle in their search for truth and justice, plainly and simply because that is the duty of anyone from below and to the left.
And we say accompany, because it is not a matter of leading them, of manipulating them, of managing them, of using them, of scorning them.
It is a matter of struggling together with them.
Because no honest human being can celebrate this pain and this rage, this injustice.
Sisters and brothers, family members of those absent from Ayotzinapa:
The Zapatistas support you because your struggle is just and is true. Because your struggle must be all of humanity’s.
It has been you and no one else who has put the word “Ayotzinapa” into global vocabulary.
You, with your simple word. You with no leader other than your pained and infuriated heart.
And that which you have shown has given much strength and spirit to us simple folk from below and to the left.
Because there outside they say and shout to each other that only the great minds know how, that only with leaders and bosses, the only with political parties, that only with elections.
And there they are in their clamor which even they do not hear, they do not even hear reality.
And so your pain, your rage, appeared.
And so you taught us that it was and is our pain also, that it was and is our rage also.
That is why we asked you to have our representation in those days of the First Global Festival of Resistances and Rebellions Against Capitalism.
We do not only wish for the achievement of the noble objective of those who we are still missing today returning with life.
We also will continue supporting with our small forces.
As Zapatistas we are sure that your absent ones, who are also ours, when they make themselves present again they will be amazed not so much because their names took many languages and many geographies. Nor because their faces traveled the world. Nor because the struggle for their appearance with life was and is global. Nor because their absence has demolished the lie made government and denounced the terror made system.
They will be amazed indeed, but upon realizing the moral stature of their family members, of you, who at no point let their names fall. And who, without giving up, without selling out, without giving in, continued looking until finding them.
So, that day or that night, your absent ones will give you the same embrace that we the Zapatistas now give you.
An embrace of love, of respect, of admiration.
And in addition, we give you 46 embraces, one for each one of the absent.
- Abel García Hernández
- Abelardo Vázquez Peniten
- Adán Abraján de la Cruz
- Antonio Santana Maestro
- Benjamín Ascencio Bautista
- Bernardo Flores Alcaraz
- Carlos Iván Ramírez Villarreal
- Carlos Lorenzo Hernández Muñoz
- César Manuel González Hernández
- Christian Alfonso Rodríguez Telumbre
- Christian Tomás Colón Garnica
- Cutberto Ortiz Ramos
- Dorian González Parral
- Emiliano Alen Gaspar de la Cruz.
- Everardo Rodríguez Bello
- Felipe Arnulfo Rosas
- Giovanni Galindes Guerrero
- Israel Caballero Sánchez
- Israel Jacinto Lugardo
- Jesús Jovany Rodríguez Tlatempa
- Jonás Trujillo González
- Jorge Álvarez Nava
- Jorge Aníbal Cruz Mendoza
- Jorge Antonio Tizapa Legideño
- Jorge Luis González Parral
- José Ángel Campos Cantor
- José Ángel Navarrete González
-José Eduardo Bartolo Tlatempa
-José Luis Luna Torres
-Jhosivani Guerrero de la Cruz
-Julio César López Patolzin
-Leonel Castro Abarca
-Luis Ángel Abarca Carrillo
-Luis Ángel Francisco Arzola
-Magdaleno Rubén Lauro Villegas
-Marcial Pablo Baranda
-Marco Antonio Gómez Molina
-Martín Getsemany Sánchez García
-Mauricio Ortega Valerio
-Miguel Ángel Hernández Martínez
-Miguel Ángel Mendoza Zacarías
.-Saúl Bruno García
.- Julio César Mondragón Fontes
.- Daniel Solís Gallardo
.- Julio César Ramírez Nava
.- Alexander Mora Venancio
You are here with us, the sisters and brothers of the native peoples who struggle in the great agreement which is called the Indigenous National Congress.
Since more than 500 years ago we have sought each other as native peoples in the paths of rebellion and resistance.
Since more than 500 years ago pain and rage have been the day and the night in our path.
Since more than 500 years ago it has been our endeavor to conquer freedom, truth, and justice.
Since more than 18 years ago we have found each other as the Indigenous National Congress by the hand of the late Comandanta Ramona.
Since then we have tried to be students of her wisdom, of her history, of her endeavor.
Since then we have been revealing, together, the passage of capitalism’s dismal carriage over our bones, our blood, our history.
And we name exploitation, plunder, repression, and discrimination.
And we name the crime and the criminal: the capitalist system.
But not only, also with our bones, blood, and history we name the rebellion and the resistance of the native peoples.
With the Indigenous National Congress we raised the dignified color of the land that we are.
With the Indigenous National Congress we learned that we have to know how to respect each other, that we are going to have our place in our demands.
We understand that now the most urgent thing is truth and justice for Ayotzinapa.
Today the most painful and infuriating thing is that the 43 are not with us.
Tomorrow we do not want such things to happen to us to, for this, let us spread the word there in our towns, nations, neighborhoods, and tribes.
Let us call upon our peoples to no longer allow them to continue cheating us with miserable handouts, only to keep us quiet, and for the head honchos to continue enriching themselves at our expense.
Let us join our rages and organize and struggle with dignity without selling out, without giving up, and without giving in, for our political prisoners, who they have in prison for struggling for the injustices in which we live.
As native peoples we fight for what is our right, we know how to do this, our great great grandparents taught us this, that they cannot do away with us as the native peoples that we are on these soils.
That is why we exist in so many languages, because our ancestors knew how not to let themselves be done away with, now the same thing is our responsibility.
We all must say NO to the transnationals.
From our towns, nations, neighborhoods, and tribes, we all have to think what we are going to do, how we are going to do it, we have to think how we have to communicate about what the evil governments are doing to us.
And so we are to organize and take care of each other.
Because they will want to buy us, want to give away handouts, want to offer us positions.
They are going to look for all the ways to divide us and for us to fight and kill each other.
They are going to want to dominate and control us with other ideas.
They are going to spy on us and want to introduce all types fear.
And they are going to put thousands of traps for us to fall and no longer struggle for our people.
But are we really going to allow them to continue another 520 years of treating us like their garbage?
We only want to live in peace, without the exploitation of man by man, we want equality among men and women, respect for those who are different, and to decide together our destiny, the world which we want in the countryside and the city.
We are sure that we are going to know the best way of life which we want other than that which they impose upon us.
We the Zapatistas, want to ask the native peoples of the Indigenous National Congress to reach out to the family members of Ayotzinapa receiving them in their territories.
We ask you to invite their steps and their hearts.
We ask you, for them, for the honor of their word and of their ear.
Great is the knowledge which roosts in the hearts of the native peoples, and it will grow more upon sharing the word of pain and rage with these people.
As the guardians of mother Earth which we are, we know well that our step is long and needs company.
There is much to walk still and we cannot stop.
So we will continue walking.
As native peoples we know the earth well, let us work mother Earth, let us live with what she gives us, without exploiting.
Let us care for, love, and rest in peace in her.
We are the guardians of mother Earth.
With her we can do everything, without her everything dies uselessly.
As native peoples it is our time now and forever.
Compañeras, compañeros and compañeroas of the national and international Sixth Declaration:
In these days, being and not being present, an exchange has taken place which is not but one more of the steps which we have to take together as the Sixth Declaration and each one in their own place of struggle, with their ways, with their history.
There are times in history which run, put us before something in which we unite, without matter for the geography which our dream travels and without matter for the calendar of our struggle.
Ayotzinapa has been a point where we have reunited.
It is not enough.
Let us work, organize, and struggle for our disappeared compañer@s and struggle for our prisoners.
Let us form a whirlwind in the world, so that they give us our disappeared alive.
Let us make one. We are in fact one as human beings, but there are some beasts who disappear us, they are the capitalists.
Let us form one wave and envelop those beasts and drown those wicked ones who have done us so much harm in the world.
Let us matter to each other, as the family members from Ayotzinapa are teaching us.
Like them, without resting, without taking advantage to get a cut for other interests.
Compañeros and compañeras, let us remove from our heads the bad meaning of the phrase “take advantage.”
Let us think of the good meaning of the word, let us take advantage of our common good. We already live the bad which those who have taken advantage make by exploiting us.
And still it disappears us, tortures us, imprisons us.
Freedom, justice, democracy, and peace is our destiny.
It is now time for us the poor of the world to begin by constructing another more just world, where we leave the generations prepared to not allow Savage neoliberal capitalism to return.
Let us hear the cry of the 43 young student compañeros, who tell us “look for us and find us, do not allow them to cover our cry, the 43 who are the same as you, they deprive us of our freedom, we are seeing if you are going to fight for us, and if you do not fight, it means that you are not going to fight for the rest, that it is going to come for theirs.”
The cry of the 43 compañeros is telling us, “help, accompany, struggle, organize, work, move together with our family members, for they are already leaving you alone because the elections are now approaching, this is what it is doing to us for them to forget about us.”
Let us join our struggles which we have, the struggle for the disappeared. Let us name the absent. Let us point out the crime clearly. Let us point out the criminal.
The family members of Ayotzinapa have nourished our force of rebellion and resistance, they have opened our eyes more and they have made our dignified rage grow.
They are indicating a path and they are saying that giving their lives does not matter if it is necessary for their disappeared.
And they show us also about how all of us must organize, those with disappeared and also those without disappeared for now, but who are going be with disappeared if we do not organize, because the narco-governments are still there.
They show us that it is necessary to struggle, not to care if we do not appear in the paid media, what matters to us is life and no more deaths and disappearances.
They show us that it is time for us to organize.
That it is time to decide for ourselves, our destiny.
It is that simple and that complicated.
Because that means organization, work, struggle, rebellion, and resistance.
Only with movement and organization will we from below defend ourselves and free ourselves.
Compañeras and compañeros of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation:
It has been a difficult year.
The war against our spirit of peace continues.
The head honcho continues wanting to kill our freedom.
The lie continues wanting to hide our endeavor.
Our blood and our death continue fertilizing our mountains.
Like since some time ago. Pain and death which before were only for us continued extending themselves to other places and reaching others in the country and the city.
Darkness is made longer and heavier in the world which corresponds to each one of us.
We, in fact, knew.
We, in fact, know.
For this we prepared for years, decades, centuries:
Our look does not only look close.
It does not only look at today nor only at our soil.
We look far in the calendar and the geography and like so we think.
Ever more pain unites us, but also rage.
Because now and since some time ago, we see that in many corners lights are lit.
Lights of rebellion and resistance.
Sometimes small like ours.
Sometimes they last.
Sometimes they are only a flicker which quickly goes out.
Sometimes they continue and continue, without going out in memory.
And in all those lights it is predicted that the tomorrow which follows will be very other.
We, in fact, knew it 21 years ago, 31 years ago, 100 years ago, 500 years ago.
We, in fact, know that we have to struggle every day, at all times, in all places.
We, in fact, know that we will not give up, that we will not sell out, and that we will not give in.
We, in fact, no that what is lacking is lacking.
In the following days, weeks, months, more of our word, of our thought on how we see the small world and the large world, will be released.
They will be difficult words and thoughts because they are simple.
Because we see clearly that the world is not that of 100 years ago, well it is not even the same as 20 years ago.
As the Zapatistas that we are, although small, we think the world.
We study it in its calendars and geographies.
Critical thought is necessary for struggle.
Theory is what they call critical thought.
Not idle thought, which conforms with what there is.
Not dogmatic thought, which makes itself head honcho and imposes.
Not crooked thought, which argues lies.
Thought which asks, which questions, which doubts.
Not even in the most difficult conditions should the study and analysis of reality be abandoned.
Study and analysis are also weapons for the struggle.
But not only practice, not only theory.
Thought which does not struggle, makes nothing more than noise.
Struggle which does not think, repeats its errors and does not get up after falling.
And struggle and thought gather in warriors, in the rebellion and resistance which today shake the world even if its sound is silenced.
We the Zapatistas think and struggle.
We struggle and think in the collective heart which we are.
Compañeras, compañeros, compañeroas:
There is not only one path.
There is not a sole step.
Those who walk and struggle do not have the same way.
The walker is not one.
The times and the places are varied and many are the colors which shine below and to the left in the land which hurts.
But the destination is the same: freedom. Freedom. FREEDOM.
Compañeros, compañeras, compañeroas:
Sisters and brothers:
21 years after the beginning of our war against oblivion, this is our word:
TRUTH AND JUSTICE FOR AYOTZINAPA!
TRUTH AND JUSTICE FOR MEXICO AND THE WORLD!
MAY THE DEATH WHICH CAPITALISM IMPOSES DIE!
LONG LIVE THE LIFE WHICH RESISTANCE CREATES!
FOR HUMANITY AND AGAINST CAPITALISM!
REBELLION AND RESISTANCE!
From the mountains of the Mexican Southeast.
For the Indigenous Revolutionary Clandestine Committee-General Command of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.
Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés.
Mexico, January 2015.
Translated from Spanish by Henry Gales.