The lights of Xanica

People in the Zapotec community of Santiago Xanica in the Sierra Sur of Oaxaca continue to struggle for their right to choose their municipal president in an assembly by means of traditional practices and customs and to gain the freedom of the first political prisoners of the Ulises Ruiz regime in the face of threats, harassment, and arrest warrants on the eve of the municipal elections of August 26.

August 22nd, 2007 – Carolina writes: The road to Xanica climbs up from Huatulco through a beautiful forest. It’s rough and unpaved, but the driver of our wooden-railed pick-up knows all the ruts and curves, even in the rain. He’s lived there all his life. His name is Isaías.

He talks to the two of us, who were lucky enough to be riding up front, about the woods and the deer and possums and armadillos that live there. Then he says, “See those lights? They’re the lights of Xanica.” On our two-hour ride they look really distant, then closer, then even further away, but there they are, shining clearly through the mist, always visible in this part of the Sierra Sur of Oaxaca. Isaías answers our questions and tells about the state of siege in his town.

Only later did I learn that he’s one of eight people from Xanica with warrants out for his arrest.

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APPO Declaration: August 9th, 2007

POLITICAL DECLARATION OF THE POPULAR ASSEMBLY OF THE PEOPLES OF OAXACA. AUGUST 9th, 2007

TO THE MEDIA
TO THE PEOPLE OF OAXACA
AND TO THE PEOPLE OF THE WORLD

The past electoral process for the renovation of the local congress is a political thermometer to value the distrust of the people and of the citizenship of the system of parties and the institutions. In front of the APPO call to the vote of punishment in opposition to the PRI, PAN, PVEM, PANAL AND ALLIES, today it has been proof that the people of Oaxaca have waken up, and that these people could locate with accuracy to the different electoral actors for their lack of elementary commitments like justice, among many others. The intelligent people also recognized those who act against them, when the solidarity to demand the exit of the assassin Ulises Ruiz Ortiz (URO) was more needed. It was not, nor is the aim of the APPO, to give the vote to any political party at all; and the abstentionism is a proof of the lack of credibility of those who contended in the elections, and represents the face of the antidemocracy of the political parties, which are far away from the people’s inspirations, repeating the political control by party bosses and the estates of power.

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APPO as a United Vision

July 26th, 2007 – CODEP writes: APPO is a popular magisterial movement formed to resolve the conflict created by the tyrant Ulisés Ruiz and backed by ex President Vicente Fox Quesada and the illegitimate Fecal and all of the government apparatus that support them in the state of Oaxaca.

In November 2006 APPO finally met and formally constituted its existence as the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca despite the obstacles created by some organizations that opposed its creation.

Among the themes generated by this assembly were defining the characteristics that APPO should have, as well as the objectives that it should strive for, based on the following general considerations

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The New APPO, Elections, a Questionable Guerrilla Group and the Threat of Forgetfulness

Oaxaca is Not Over

August 4th, 2007 – Barucha Calamity Peller writes:

“Don’t let another six months go by before the world turns around and sees Oaxaca again.”

-APPO representative Eric.

Has the world forgotten about Oaxaca?

Political activity, from repression to organizing, is still just as present as when the Oaxaca uprising was visible in the streets, but with the appearance of normalcy in Oaxaca City it seems that many of us have begun the process of forgetting or assuming that the Oaxaca struggle is over.

Walking on the streets of Oaxaca it is indeed hard for the untrained eye to see the continuing struggle for autonomy.

The tourists have returned, the graffiti has been painted over, and the barricades are a burning memory. And perhaps it is a failure that on the left we need dramatic events and repression in order to recognize important political transformation, and in this sense we become part of the dangerous process of forgetting.

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Thousands of Women March on One Year Anniversary of Channel 9 Takeover

Remaining Movement Media Outlets Continue to be Sabotaged by the Government

Barucha Calamity Peller writes: Today, August 1st, 2007, thousands of women marched in Oaxaca City, Oaxaca, Mexico, on the one year anniversary of the historic takeover of the Oaxacan television station, Canal 9, by APPO (Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca). The spontaneous television occupation last year sparked a series of radio station takeovers in which the Oaxacan movement essentially seized and utilized the majority of mainstream media outlets in the capital.

The march today comes at a time in which the movement’s few remaining media outlets after the late October invasion of the Preventive Federal Police are under grave threat. Radio Planton, the movement’s largest radio run by the Section 22 teachers union and other movement participants, has regular signal interruptions believed to be caused by the state government. Oaxaca Libre, an independent media website, is regularly sabotaged.

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Cesar Luis Días arrested without warrant in Xanica

June 18, 2007 – Alianza MagonistaZapatista:
DENUNCIATION BY THE MAGONISTA-ZAPATISTA ALLIANCE
alianzamagonistazapatista@yahoo.com.mx

The members of the Magonista-Zapatista Alliance (AMZ) strongly denounce the little dictator of Oaxaca Ulises Ruin Ortiz (URO).

Today at 4:00 in the afternoon, a heavily armed Oaxaca state police commando unit, along with the police who have the town of Xanica under siege, burst into the house of our indigenous comrade Cesar Luis Días like a bolt from the blue and arrested him without a warrant, disregarding the presence of his three small children.

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“True Compañeras”: Women’s Participation in the Popular Movement of Oaxaca

An account of the important role of women in the Oaxacan social movement

February 7th, 2007 – Yakira writes: Women have not only acted as participants in the ongoing popular movement in Oaxaca, but have also profoundly shaped the course of its history. They have created some of the most powerful stories and moments in the past nine months, and have helped tell them. Stories of women who have built the movement are everywhere in Oaxaca. There are the stories of housewives arrested and beaten by police, who in response have begun to organize for the first time in their lives. There are the stories of elderly women from local communities who have cooked huge pots of food for people guarding barricades and soothed tear-gassed eyes with vinegar and Coke. Then there are the stories of women who have been involved since the beginning, participating in the teachers’ strike or organizing the movement to support it. Their stories, of personal histories aligned with the movement since its very inception, are the ones that may best shed light on how women have helped create a widespread and lasting popular resistance in Oaxaca.

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