On October 27, paramilitaries in Oaxaca, Mexico murdered Indymedia journalist Brad Will. He is one of dozens who have lost their lives at the hands of pro-government forces while participating in the largely nonviolent resistance to government oppression in that region. Mexican president Vicente Fox used Brad’s death as a pretext to send 4,000 federal police into the city of Oaxaca; these forces are systematically brutalizing the population.
The people of Oaxaca have not backed down – through days of courageous fighting, they have managed to protect their radio station at the university, repelling machine gun wielding armored police with only sticks, stones, and hope. On November 5, tens of thousands marched through the streets of Oaxaca, calling for the federal police to leave.
Poster for N20 promo: 11×17 black and white pdf
The only reason that hundreds more have not yet been killed in Oaxaca is that the Mexican government fears the response that would engender in Mexico and across the world. Those who have organized solidarity demonstrations at Mexican consulates can congratulate themselves on helping, however slightly, to deter the Mexican government from ordering a bloodbath.
That bloodbath will still take place, however, unless we continue to escalate the pressure upon President Fox’s government to withdraw federal forces from Oaxaca. The EZLN has announced that it will help coordinate a nationwide shut-down on November 20. This must be matched with international actions to show that the world has not taken its eyes off Oaxaca, that on the contrary, the mobilization in support of those who struggle there is only gathering momentum.
On November 20, blockades will be set up to show the Mexican government we mean business. We are calling upon YOU to join in these blockades. That could mean blockading the consulates’ websites, jamming their phone lines with calls about the conflict in Oaxaca, occupying the offices of the consuls, or shutting down the roads around the consulates in whatever way you see fit.
If we do not show Vicente Fox that paramilitaries and federal forces cannot brutalize Oaxaca with impunity, the blood of an entire murdered resistance movement will be on our hands. Now is the time to act in solidarity with those who struggle in Oaxaca, in solidarity with the Zapatistas who have called on us to support them, and in solidarity with all who struggle against government and capitalism across the world.
Actions are already being planned in cities around the US. Please plan actions in yours.