Brothers, sisters, compañeras and compañeros:
It is a great pleasure for us to come together with you to share the activities that we’ve organized to commemorate seven years of work and resistance by Radio Ñomndaa, La Palabra del Agua (Word of the Water).
In spite of all the limitations, difficulties, attacks and harassment that we face, here we are, and we’re moving ahead with our efforts to create and sustain a communications project of the people and for the people. The little that we’ve achieved during the last seven years is thanks to the fact that we are not alone; you are our source of support.
As we reflect on the problems we’re experiencing here in our town, the problems people are experiencing throughout Mexico and, we dare say, the world, we understand that the roots of this situation lie in the fact that the value of money is placed above all else. The problem is that a few people who have accumulated a lot of money and, consequently, a lot of power, are deciding how we should live on this planet. They can do this because the laws they’ve made and the State institutions they’ve created really respond to the needs of capital over and above the needs of the people, over and above human dignity, over and above the balance of life on Mother Earth.
Big businessmen, with the help of government rulers, want to convert everything into merchandise to buy and sell so that they can reap profits and, thus, continue to accumulate wealth and power. In the eyes of these businessmen, even our Mother Earth, the air, the electrical frequencies, and the water are merchandise.
Businessmen and government officials use the words “development” or “progress” and other variants to keep on advancing in the inculcation of capitalism in our communities. When a people, an organization, or a person resists the plunder, then comes repression, the criminalization of the social struggle, the war of extermination. This is what is now going on in our country, Mexico, ruled by the PAN. The same thing is happening in the state of Guerrero, ruled by the PRD, and in our municipality Xochistlahuaca, ruled by the PRI for more than 70 years. Whatever the colors of the party in power may be, all impose the same policies in service to capital.
In order to justify its policy of repression, the government has invented a war against what it calls “organized crime,” thereby violating our laws and our most basic rights. As of now, more than sixty thousand deaths have been tallied since the beginning of this absurd war, which has failed to decrease or break up organized crime. Results show that, in truth, this war is against the people, mainly against people who have gotten organized and who are resisting the plunder and struggling for a different world. When governments haven’t been able to attack people in struggle or they don’t think it’s in their best interests to do so, they turn to organized crime or their paramilitary groups to make it seem that conflicts have arisen because of personal, family, or inter-community problems. In this absurd war the “dispensable” common criminals are not the only ones who have died; our own children, our sisters and brothers, and our own comrades are the main ones who are being killed ––good people, people of struggle.
What we have is a terrorist State that seeks to silence critical voices and crush or intimidate those who are struggling. They plan to use fear to paralyze us, but we will not give in to their plans. And so, from this very spot, even though we know the bad governments scorn whatever we say because they haven’t listened to us for hundreds of years and we know they won’t listen to us now either, there are things we must say.
We make the following demands on the Mexican government and the imperial governments:
– An end to the war of extermination against our Zapatista brothers and sisters in Chiapas and our brothers and sisters in Xayakalan in Michoacan.
– Justice for those killed in Acteal in Chiapas, Ostula in Michoacan, Aguas Blancas, El Charco, the Organization for the Future of the Mixtec People, and the Organization of the Me’phaa Indigenous People of Ayutla de los libres; justice for Miguel Angel Gutierrez Avila; justice for the ecologists have been killed or disappeared in the Sierra of Guerrero; justice for the students killed at the Ayotzinapa Rural Teacher Training School in the state of Guerrero. Justice for all who have been killed in this absurd war.
– No more impunity. Jail terms for murderers.
– No more plunder of the territory of indigenous farmers, tribes, nations and peoples, such as the Yaquis of Sonora, the Wixárikas of San Luis Potos. No to mining in the Na Savi, Me’phaa and Mestizo territories of the Regional Coordination of Community Authorities- Community Police.
– Freedom for our brother Alberto Patishtan, held prisoner in the federal prison, CEFERESO No.8, in Guasave, Sinaloa; freedom for the political prisoners of the Voz de Amate in Chiapas; freedom for the journalist Mumia Abu Jamal who has been imprisoned for more than 30 years in Pennsylvania in the United States. Freedom for all political prisoners in the world.
– No more legal persecution of our comrades who are former agrarian representatives and former traditional authorities of Ndaatyuaa Suljaa: Rodrigo Morales Valtierra, Roberto Martínez de Jesús, Atilano López Díaz, Eloy Valtierra López and Epifanio Merino Guerrero.
– No more harassment or death threats against members of the Suljaa’ Support Coordination and the Cerezo Committee in Mexico City.
– No more repression and legal persecution against collectives and individuals who make it possible for free and alternative community media to exist.
In truth, we place our hope in good people like yourselves, brothers and sisters, compañeras and compañeros, and in all of us who, from below and from the left, wish to build a world in which there is a place for everyone. To do this, we need to make further advances in our organization. In order to deal with the attacks against us and, above all, to make our dreams of freedom and social justice a reality, we need to join forces.
May each and every one of us be a seed of hope for a life of dignity for our children.
We now have seven years of resistance and community communication behind us, and the struggle continues for the autonomy of our people. Thank you for being our comrades on this journey.
Never again a Mexico without us!
The Word of the People is Free, Rebellious and True!
Suljaa’, Guerrero, Mexico, December 17, 2011.
Radio Ñomndaa, La Palabra del Agua.
— The Word of the People is Free, Rebellious and True!
This post is also available in: Spanish