Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Consequence of Mexico - Part I

Today we can speak of Latin America as the most explosively Revolutionary region in the world. In the last decade and even more so in the last few years, its people have demonstrated tremendous revolutionary organization, energy, and maturity. This great potential has generated exemplary international leadership and has united youth, and indigenous social movements throughout the world. In the final showdown between Capitalism/Imperialism and Revolutionary Internationalism, some refer to this final struggle as the Fourth World War, positioning through geographical victories, politically or militarily, will have a vital impact on the outcome. Therefore, in order to be methodical with our assets and to properly evaluate our objectives, we must spend considerable attention on Mexico which will be an immensely critical piece of the international puzzle. It is quite probable that Latin America will be the first continent to completely liberate itself from the yoke of imperialism, and a successful socialist revolution in Mexico would help accelerate that process.

At the same time, it is a daring outlook to risk miscalculating the Imperialists in their own hemisphere. With the reactionary, neoliberal PAN (National Action Party) in power in Mexico, U.S. Imperialism is well placed to exert geographic, economic, and political control over Latin America. The friendly and subservient government of Felipe Calderon in the second biggest country in Latin America, the one that seperates the north from the south, is the U.S.' most crucial gamepiece and lifeline to the continent.

Still, we cannot overlook or underestimate how profoundly a Mexican Revolution would resonate in the conscience of the working class, and Black and Latin American populations of the United-States. Fidel Castro refers to these groups as the "Third World of the United-States", to which is added social marginality on top of racial discrimination. The tide of resistance radiating from the Rio Grande, from destitute border cities such as Matamoros, Ciudad Juarez, and Tijuana, some of Mexico's worst victims of crime and poverty, could quickly set ablaze the south of the United-States, where Blacks and namely Latinos are concentrated.

The subjectively ripe and mature south of revolutionary Mexico would also have a huge impact on Central America. The objective conditions in Guatemala are extremely acute and have been very thick for decades. The country is swollen with a multitude of ugly coagulated problems, and along with El Salvador and Mexico is the country in Central America which most closely resembles Colombia. Decades of neo-colonialism and brutal right-wing dictators have created these conditions of severe poverty and rampant organized crime. The people of Guatemala are looking for a way out; they will find it through a struggle which will be a very bloody and difficult one full of sacrifices, and help will come via the popular resistance of Southern Mexico. In El Salvador political freedoms are also very hard to come by, as the ruling class ARENA party has established laws against "terrorism" to implement the criminalization of protest. But the left is very militant and very well organized in El Salvador under the FMLN (Frente Farabundo Marti de Liberacion Nacional), and the weakening of U.S. grip and support with the national oligarchy could free up the necessary breathing space for the popular struggle to move ahead. With Guatemala and El Salvador rising along with Mexico, the reactionary forces in the rest of Central America would not be able to contest the human groundswell surging through the isthmus.

Mexico's Revolution, and the Internal Challenges

Mexico boasts some strong unions, namely the SNTE (National Teacher's Union), and has generated two social movements to be taken seriously in the past decade or so; the Zapatistas in Chiapas, and the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca (APPO). APPO took fire in 2006 when an initial teacher's strike turned into a full-blown attempt at ousting the PRI's (Institutional Revolutionary Party) Ulises Ruiz, the governor who continues to push a 70 year old oppressive dictatorship in the state of Oaxaca. Although the initial spark is over and APPO was contained with brutal and violent repression, it is still a young movement which remains active and full of potential, and they should not be discounted or underestimated. They will be keynote contributors to Mexico's Revolutionary future, if not leaders.

For their part the Zapatistas and their armed body the EZLN (Ejercito Zapatista de Liberacion Nacional) have been quiet as of late, the army itself has not conducted any military operations apparently since 1994. In 2001 a convoy of EZLN leaders entered Mexico City to demand the approval of an Indigenous law. They were greeted by hundreds of thousands of supporters, but despite access to the frenzied mass, Marcos was unable to create much. During 2006 and the beginning of 2007 Subcomandante Marcos, the leader of the Zapatistas, toured Mexico as part of an alternate non-electoral campaign, "La Otra", to rival the presidential elections, seeking solidarity with activist intellectuals, social movements, and the media in order to pressure for the writing of a new constitution. This effort also failed to bear tangible results for the moment, although Marcos and his entourage did manage to visit at least seventeen states. It is reported that on at least one occasion, Marcos has had the opportunity to give speeches in front of huge crowds but has not seized the moment. Some of the Zapatista leaders have gone into hiding for the time being, in response to increased threats from paramilitaries.

Although these movements have been impressive at times, they have not yet been constant, and they have been concentrated in relatively small areas in such an immense country like Mexico, where organization is more difficult over such vast territory and so many differrent states. But the main reason for the slow revolutionary progress nationally in Mexico is the question of effective Revolutionary leadership, or lack thereof. In an economically, culturally, and politically heterogeneous country like Mexico, no one has yet to carry through the full scope of the unifying role, but the APPO has put forward a model which could serve the rest of Latin America, if not the world. Mexico is the Queen-piece in the chess game to checkmate Neo-Colonialism in Latin America, and so it needs to be one of the leading protagonists internationally in the Social Justice/Anti-Imperialist movement in the next decade and beyond.

We call for International Solidarity with the APPO, the Zapatistas, and all Revolutionary Forces in Mexico!

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