CHIAPAS: THE EFFECT OF
THE NEW WORLD ORDER ON THE POOR
January 12, 1998
by: S.R. Shearer
THE ZAPATISTA REVOLT
And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God. (Luke 6:20)
His mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.
He hath showed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. (Luke 1:50-53)
On January 1st, 1994 a guerrilla movement "suddenly materialized"
in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas near the Guatemalan border.
One of the goals of the movement was declared to be the repudiation
of the North American Free Trade Agreement - a goal which caused bemused
snickering in American elitist circles - after all, what could uneducated
Mexican peasants possibly know about NAFTA? The movement called itself
the Zapatista Army of National Liberation. The movements leader
was a mysterious hooded figure calling himself "Sub-Comandante
Elitist snickering or not, the so-called "international investor
community" wasnt laughing; indeed, there was a good deal
of evidence to indicate that it had been thrown into a panic by the
revolt, hinting that a lot more was "a foot" in the "goings-on"
in Chiapas than most ordinary people realized - and that behind it all
was the hidden hand of Wall Street.
The extent to which this was true was revealed by an internal ("eyes
only") banking community memo written by Riordan Roett, an advisor
for Chase Manhattan Bank, which argued that the Mexican government -
"will need to eliminate the Zapatistas to demonstrate
their effective control of the national territory ... (and restore
the trust) ... of ... the (international) investment community (in
THE CHASE REPORT
According to Dr. Harry Cleaver of the Department of Economics at the
University of Texas (Austin) and a member of the "watchdog
committee," Austin Comite de Solidaridad con Chiapas
y Mexico, the Roett memo (i.e., the Chase Memorandum) made
three specific suggestions: (1) that the Mexican government
should "eliminate" the Zapatistas, (2) that
it should consider "stealing" the elections in Jalisco
and (3) that the "Mexican working class" should be
made to bear, as far as practicable, the pain of "re-structuring"
the Mexican economy - and that it should be made to do so in
order to "appease" foreign investors. Moreover, Roett
recommended that this pain should be kept as far away from the
"investor community" as possible. [Roett is director
of Latin American Studies at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced
International Studies and was - at the time the memo was written
- on a leave-of-absence while serving as a Chase advisor. Known
as a conservative but rational sort in academic circles, Roetts
views have - in the grand "homicidal tradition" of
such academic policymakers as Louis Adolphe Thiers, Walt Rostow,
Henry Kissinger and Herman Cohen (Cleavers words) - hardened
since he went to work full-time for Wall Street.] The Chase
Memo was attached to a larger report written to "Chase
Emerging Markets" clients, a cadre of investors that targets
newly industrialized nations for "easy money" (i.e.,
high yield) investments, and leaked to the magazine Counterpunch.
REACTION AGAINST THE CHASE REPORT
The Chase report was only one more indication - as if more were needed
- of the growing connection between Mexico and Wall Street - a connection
which is essentially a one-way relationship - with Mexico on the submissive
end and Wall Street calling the shots; a situation which allows U.S.
transnational corporations to dictate policy to the Mexican government.
News of the Chase report circulated to France and elsewhere. The result
was much agitation and mobilization against Chase and Wall Street. Labor
organizers brandished the memorandum at demonstrations in Los Angeles,
San Francisco, Seattle, New York, and other cities. The story was covered
by everyone from Final Call, which is published by the Nation
of Islam, to The Washington Post. On Capitol Hill, Rep. Marcy
Kaptur (D-Ohio) held a press conference to denounce the bank:
"Suggesting the killing of innocent people, throwing elections
- none of this seems to bother Chase," said Kaptur, who called
the memo an "amazing and troubling document." She added
that "anyone who honestly believed that Wall Streets hands
werent all over ... [U.S. policy towards Mexico] should take
a good hard look at this memo."
A similar uproar took place in Mexico after Processo, a major
Mexican news weekly, carried a Feb.13, 1995 story about Counterpunchs
disclosures. Zapatista officials in the U.S. say that publication of
the Chase Memo was "a turning point" in that it was the first
hard evidence which directly linked Wall Street to Mexicos economic
and political crisis. Chase tried a variety of tactics in seeking to
defuse the ensuing PR nightmare. First the bank insisted that the whole
thing had resulted from a copy editing error, and that Chase had intended
to call for the elimination of the Zapatista "threat," not
the Zapatistas themselves. This tactic fell flat. Chase officials then
placed sole responsibility for the fiasco on the documents author,
Riordan Roett. In a terse official communiqué, Chase said that
the opinions expressed in the memo "represent [Roetts]
personal views as a scholar. They were not meant to nor do they represent
the views of Chase;" but since Roett is on Chases payroll
and the memo went out on bank stationary, this explanation also carried
little weight. On February 16, Chase completed its distancing process
from the memo: "Dr. Roett," announced Steve Rautenberg,
a bank spokesman, "no longer has a relationship with Chase."
Nevertheless, when Roetts remarks first surfaced they were warmly
received by the so-called "investment community" and this
countrys foreign policy establishment. For example, Elliott Abrams,
a prominent figure in the Reagan Administration who is tightly connected
to American "investment circles," heartily approved Roetts
call to action. News also leaked that Roett had had extensive conversations
with Senator Bob Dole as well as other members of the Senate Steering
Committee and the State Department with regard to the report prior to
its publication, and that no one had found fault with it at the time.
Upon learning of the involvement of Dole and other Congressional leaders
in the Chase memo, Ken Silverstein, one of the journalists responsible
for making the Chase Memo public, was shocked. He later wrote, "I
originally compared it (i.e., the Chase Memo) to Hitlers white
paper for the invasion of Poland... But its not the specific
proof that really matters. The investors views are well known."
The importance, Silverstein stresses, is the level of confidence
the investment community evidently now carries through the halls of
Congress, so much so, that, "They were dumb enough to put the
damn thing on paper."
Syndicated columnist Georgie Anne Geyer, considered a mouthpiece for
elitist views by many, seemed to speak for most in the financial aristocracy
when she wrote in one of her syndicated columns a few days later that
no one "explained [Mexicos situation] better"
than Roett, adding that "establishment" scholars and financiers
"seemed to agree that while . . . [the Zapatistas] do not threaten
a wider rebellion in Mexico, they have become a litmus test for Mexicos
stability." The fact is, however, fear of a wider rebellion
is precisely what the elite establishment feared, and Geyer knew
it, despite her efforts to play down the possibility.
Commenting on the real extent of the Chiapas revolt, Ana Carrigan,
a prominent journalist and documentary film-maker, wrote in a Knight-Ridder
release dated February 22, 1995,
"The Zapatista rebellion (i.e., the Chiapas Revolt) is much
bigger than ... (Mexican and U.S. authorities) let on. It may be waged
by a ragtag army, but it is also a genuine indigenous uprising, with
mass support throughout Chiapas and the south, and nationwide sympathy
Just how much sympathy was revealed in the streets of Mexico City where
hundreds of thousands of people of all ages and backgrounds packed Mexico
Citys enormous Constitution Square chanting "We are all
Marcos" (referring to "Subcommandante Marcos," the
leader of the Chiapas revolt) and "Marcos, hold on, the people
are rising." Commenting on the huge demonstrations in Constitution
Square, Carrigan writes that all this "... shows the extent
to which the government is out of touch with the people."
"The U.S. media have been duped by official (U.S.) efforts to
belittle the Zapatistas strength by portraying them as ... eccentric
and overrated. Press reports of the 12-day war in January 1994 made
the governments decision to call a cease-fire look like a foolish
act of good will. No one reported on the skill and determination of
a peasant army that launched repeated frontal attacks on the largest
military base in the state for eight consecutive days ..."
THE DARK SIDE OF GLOBALIZATION
John Ross, a well-known New York Times reporter in Mexico, believes
that the Chiapas story reveals the dark side of the "new global
economy" - one which goes far beyond "merely" displacing
wage-earners in First World countries like the United States, France
and Germany, but one which also obliterates the peasant agriculture
of Third World nations like Mexico, Argentina, Chile and India.
Specifically, free trade (i.e., "globalization") undercuts
peasant farming in the Third World by making it compete against the
giant agribusinesses of the First World - concerns which are located
principally in the United States and to a lesser degree in Canada and
Australia. In the process, peasant agriculture is ground down under
the impress of a First World agricultural juggernaut, eventually resulting
in the forced migration of these peasants from their homes in rural
areas to the city where they are pressed into a kind of industrial slavery
for re-located First World industries (like Ford, General Motors, General
Electric, etc.), the products of which are not destined for Third World
customers, but for First World consumers. The vacated peasant lands
are then gathered up and reconstituted as large farms very often controlled
by interests in the employ of the very First World agribusinesses which
destroyed them in the first place.
It is precisely this fate - their enforced eviction from ancestral
lands and their subsequent indenturing into a form of industrial slavery
- against which the Zapatistas revolted in Chiapas. Ross Perot tried
to make this point - that is, what First World industrialists were really
up to in Mexico and other Third World countries - in the run-up to the
NAFTA vote; but he was ridiculed by the Clinton Administration, the
establishment wings of both the Republican and Democratic Parties, Wall
Street, and the American press (which the "investment community"
essentially controls) as a "Know-Nothing." "Where
was the proof of Perots allegations?" they asked. It
was there; the problem is, no one wanted (or was permitted) to look.
Even Perot - as rich as he is - didnt have the financial wherewithal
to stand up against the withering fire (to say nothing of the derision,
ridicule and mockery) of Wall Street. In the end, Wall Street machinations
in the press and elsewhere, coupled with its relentless ad homonym
attacks, reduced Perot in the eyes of countless Americans to the status
of a pathetic, uneducated, eccentric buffoon - which, or course, he
EFFORTS BY THE MEXICAN
PRESS TO REPORT ON CHIAPAS
Efforts by the Mexican press to report honestly on Chiapas have been
met with open hostility by the "investor community." For example,
newspapers like Proceso, La Journada, El Financiero, and El
Tiempo have been deluged with a variety of veiled warnings from
the Mexican government. La Journada has actually been the target
of threatened violence by the so-called "Mexican Anti-Communist
Front" - a group which fronts for the Mexican oligarchy and is
reputed to be under the control of certain Wall Street interests like
Chase and Morgan. La Journadas reporters in Chiapas have
even received telephoned death threats and have been physically assaulted
by interests in the pay of landed Mexican aristocrats eager to expropriate
vacated peasant farms [interests which are commonly believed to have
links with several giant First World (American) agribusinesses like
Cargil, Archer Daniel Midlands, etc.]. The offices of other newspapers
and journals have also been broken into and ransacked. And just how
close has the unrest in Chiapas been linked to NAFTA (and, ipso facto,
the American government) in the imagination of many in Mexico? - the
Mexican people believe that the troops would have never been sent in
without Washingtons OK! It was certainly spurred by pressure from
the American investment community.
It was this and more which was substantiated by the Chase Memo which
Counterpunch published on February 1, 1995 - attached to an article
by Ken Silverstein and Alex Cockburn. The article began: "In
the name of investor confidence, a powerful U.S. bank is calling on
the Mexican government to crush the Zapatista insurgency in Chiapas."
Studying the report and exploring Roetts other "interventions"
in the Mexico crisis, Silverstein and Cockburn discovered what appeared
to be an almost paranoid and even panicky desire by Chase (and Wall
Street) to quickly extinguish the revolt in order to protect "investor
confidence" insofar as Chases (and Wall Streets) "clients"
were concerned. In the report, Roett played down the possibility of
a negotiated settlement to the conflict, saying it is difficult
to imagine that the current environment will yield a peaceful solution."
Why? - because Zedillo may not be able to gain the confidence of
the Zapatistas and their supporters due to the fact that "the
monetary crisis limits the resources available to the government for
social and economic reforms."
In other words, foreign investors should have first rights to the dwindling
reserves at the Mexican treasury, which then, of course, would leave
almost nothing to implement the anti-poverty programs Zedillo had promised
for Chiapas. The blindness of the "international investor community"
to the legitimate needs of anyone but its own selfish interests is mind-boggling;
it is, nonetheless, a pattern of thinking which has historically characterized
this community .
GETTING BACK TO THE CHASE REPORT
Getting back to the Chase report, Silverstein and Cockburn reported
that Roett was particularly bitter over events south of the border because
he had previously assured Chase executives that the government in Mexico
was at last sufficiently under the "influence" of Wall Street
and adequately in command of Mexicos internal situation that investors
need not be overly concerned about the safety of their investments south
of the border. Comforted by this report, Chase had increased its Mexican
investments - investments which now seemed to be threatened by the popularly-based
Chiapas revolt, a rebellion which - according to its own communiqués
- was openly aimed at Wall Streets "globalization" aspirations.
Coming on top of other evidence of the role Wall Street is playing
in forcing the nations of the earth into knuckling under to its globalization
aspirations, Roetts report revealed in stark terms that Wall Streets
influence was now virtually omniscient, reaching even into the
backyards of the planets most inaccessible and isolated communities
- and that it would stop at nothing in crushing those who opposed
its globalist dreams and its efforts at establishing its world-wide
economic hegemony over the earths myriad populations. It was
to this end that Roett had called on the Mexican government to take
a hard-nosed approach on Chiapas - going even so far as to suggest that
the government consider "stealing" the vote in the upcoming
elections in order to maintain "investor confidence" in the
Mexican economy (and, ipso facto, protect Chase investments
in the area). Roett urged:
"The Zedillo administration will need to consider carefully
whether or not to allow opposition victories ... at the ballot box."
He continued, "To deny legitimate electoral victories by the
opposition will be a serious setback in the Presidents (i.e.,
Zedillos) electoral strategy. But failure to retain PRI (i.e.,
Zedillos political party) control runs the risk of splitting
the government party."
Roett conceded that his call for brutality, if heeded by Zedillo,
might provoke negative repercussions internationally, but there
were "always political costs in bold action."
David Malpass, a director at Bear Stearns, said that Mexican President
Zedillo should appease foreign investors by taking Roetts advise.
Such action, Malpass suggested, would result in a "giant re-establishment
Dalal Baer, a well-known Wall Street spokesman and an advisor to the
investment house of Bear Sterns & Company, echoed both Roett and
his boss at Bear Sterns, David Malpass. He wrote, "financial
markets might not respond positively to increased democracy because
it leads to increased uncertainty." Quite a piece of advice,
considering it is directed toward a nation whose citizens have been
fighting-and dying for generations to gain the right to free and fair
elections. Still, as Roett writes, theres no question that the
current party (i.e., PRI) dictatorship serves the banking communitys
interests better than a democratic government.
DEMOCRACY UNSETTLES WALL STREET
Roett writes that, indeed, its democracy more than armed rebellion
that unsettles the Wall Street heavy hitters - and as if to confirm
Wall Street in its fears, recent elections in the states of Jalisco,
Michoacan, Guanajuato, Baja California, and Yucatan have all gone against
PRI and the Mexican oligarchy. "The Mexican monetary crisis...
raises the issue of whether or not the Mexican working class will accept
a prolonged period of wage losses and diminished living standards."
And if not, they may do something foolish, something theyve done
twice before in this century: throw the "investor community"
out. Democracy makes such an outcome that much easier.
All this becomes that much more likely as details of the complex hidden
structure behind the peso crisis emerge: Mexicans are smarting from
insult after injury and are responding correspondingly. The entire PRI
political and economic organization is under siege as never before.
Several days after the army headed into Chiapas to "eliminate the
Zapatistas," the "investor community" (i.e., the PRI)
suffered a resounding defeat in the race for the governership of Jalisco.
The landslide was too great for the results to be falsified by the PRI.
As a result, Wall Street remains opposed to any type of "subtle"
methods in dealing with the Zapatistas, believing that any kind of action
which smacks of "appeasement" - i.e., any action which does
not deal harshly with the revolt - will come at the expense of
"investor confidence" in the Mexican economy - and, after
all, "investor confidence" in Mexico is what NAFTA is all
about. This is why Wall Street believes that the Mexican government
needs to "finish off" Subcommandante Marcos and his comrades
as ruthlessly and as quickly as possible. Wall Street knows that Mexico
has "fallen prey" to two such "populist" revolts
in this century already, and it doesnt take much imagination to
seriously consider that a third such insurrection is a distinct possibility.
THE ARGENTINE METHOD
The extent to which this fear permeates the "investment community"
was made apparent on Dec. 18, 1995 when a group of Mexican businessmen
reportedly met with Zedillo to demand that the new government take the
offensive in Chiapas - going even so far as suggesting the "Argentine
Method" (i.e., the use of "Death Squads") for dealing
with the revolt. [See our report on the "Death Squads" in
our October, 1997 Journal].
Indeed, there are many high-ranking Mexican military officials who
have long been lobbying for a Mexican equivalent to Argentinas
"dirty war," and - according to reports from Buenos Aires
- military advisors from Argentina have already been sent to Mexico
to train Mexican troops in the " Argentine Method ."
The parallel here is with the dispatch of Argentine officers to train
the Nicaraguan Contras at the start of the eighties.
To believe that all this was not the result of a secret intrigue between
Wall Street, the U.S. government and the Mexican oligarchy is a stretch
- something akin to believing that tooth fairies are real. Subcomandante
Marcos certainly felt that there was collusion involved here. As the
Mexican military chased the EZLN (i.e., the Zapatistas) deeper into
the Lacandon forest on February 10, Marcos wrote,
"Maybe in the secret conditions agreed to by Mr. Zedillo for
... [continued U.S. (i.e., Wall Street)] support is the condition
to annihilate us..." He continued, "The price of the head
of the Zapatistas is the only thing that has stayed high in the rise
and fall of financial speculation."
As if to confirm Marcos suspicions, journalists working for La
Journada in Chiapas report the fact that the U.S. is covertly strengthening
its unofficial military presence in the Chiapas area and that U.S. intelligence
is the agency which finally identified Subcomandante Marcos. According
to La Jornada, the information was published in the early edition
of a New York Times story, but was removed in later editions
at the insistence of Wall Street.
COVER-UP BY THE
The extent to which the mainline press in the United States has been
covering all this up is truly astounding. Once again, death squad activity
is alive and well, and its no longer confined to out-of-the-way countries
like Guatemala and El Salvador, but now has taken root in Mexico. Michael
McCaughan of the small newspaper, the Anderson Valley Advertiser (Mendocino
California) traveled to Chiapas to report on whats been going
on. He writes:
"Once the televised speech of President Zedillo spoke of re-establishing
the State of Law" inside rebel-held territory, the people of
Morelia began packing up their belongings in no doubt that the army
would be there as fast as formality permitted. Zedillo spoke of a
minor operation, conducted by security forces belonging to the Attorney
Generals office (GR), with only the minimum army backup, a ploy
which fooled no one. This was going to be a full-scale war on anyone
foolish or brave enough to remain inside rebel territory since the
Zapatista uprising in January 1994.
"The population of Morelia pace the mud floors of their homes
all night, burning photos and IDs, picking out the vital items for
survival in the hills: blankets, clothes, a sack of grain, machete,
etc. The older men and women sat in a daze, aware that they were probably
leaving their homes forever. Despite the poverty, this was all they
had built up over 60 or 70 years and it hurt bitterly to abandon it
to the army. The children, sensing the fear around them, refused to
sleep, and prepared their own small packs consisting of a toy, a change
of clothes, and food. At one point, as I faded into exhausted but
fitful sleep, I was quickly awakened by Juan, a bright four-year-old,
keeping an eye on the television. "Dont sleep, Michael,"
he said, "the army will come and kill you." The last time
the army entered Morelia they were looking for "subversives"
in the wake of the January 1994 uprising. All males over 12 years
of age were dragged out to the basketball court, forced to lie face
down in the sun all day and kicked in the head if they looked up.
32 villagers were arrested and taken by helicopter to prison where
they were beaten and then released without charge. Three elderly men
were taken to the convent nearby, where the village heard their screams
as they were tortured and beaten. [Reports indicate that "Anglos"
speaking only English were present during the torture of the individuals
involved.] They emerged at midday, covered in blood, their ears, noses
and chests carved up by army knives. The Morelia women, ignored by
the army, watched as the three were taken away in an army ambulance
with red cross markings. The bodies of the three men reappeared five
weeks later in a ditch three kilometers from the village, a scattered
collection of bones and rags and skulls, later pieced together by
forensic anthropologist Clyde Snow. (all this, of course, smacked
of classic death squad methodologies).
"Meanwhile, on the evening of President Zedillos speech,
February 9th last, advance lookouts were posted all the way to the
town of Altamirano, a rancher stronghold located eight kilometers
away, converted into a Mexican army fortress ever since Zapatistas
occupied it and destroyed the municipal presidency building in January
1994. Local rancher Luis Orbins (a rancher who reportedly has been
busy trying to buy up "vacated" peasant lands) lent his
half-built hotel in the main street to the army for their headquarters,
conveniently located beside the only telephone in town. The army ringed
the town with tents, tanks and troop carriers, occupying the gardens
of the townspeople. In apparent defiance of former President Salinass
public order for the army to withdraw from the center of Chiapan towns
after the January 1994 cease-fire, the army disguised its central
HQ as a "complaints office," with a desk on the street.
Dozens of complaints appeared about masked rebels stealing cattle,
household goods and terrorizing people in their homes, all of them
curiously similar. When one Altamirano citizen went to army HQ to
complain that soldiers had occupied his garden and stolen a chicken,
he was visited by three soldiers, who stuck a gun in his mouth and
advised him not to persist with his complaint. Another local, Alejandro
Munoz, has been arrested twice, the second time spending a month in
prison, after organizing a petition to lobby for the withdrawal of
the army from the town." [For a full account of the subsequent
investigation read "Waiting for Justice," by Human Rights
Watch/Physicians for Human Rights.]
U.S. DENIES FOREKNOWLEDGE OF CHIAPAS
Of course, the U.S. foreign policy establishment claims to have been
taken by surprise by the events in Chiapas - insisting that the revolt
somehow materialized out of nowhere - and, naturally, American press
reports seems to lend credence to such a belief. Indeed, the New
York Times headlined its morning edition of the 2nd of January (1994)
with "Rebels Hit 4 Towns in Mexico." Other newspapers printed
similar headlines - all of which appeared to accept the sudden nature
of the uprising - but it is all smoke and mirrors - a studied effort
by the American foreign policy establishment to hide what is really
happening in Mexico from the American public and to obscure the damage
that globalization is having on every-day citizens in countries like
Mexico. The fact of the matter is, there was nothing sudden about the
insurrection in Chiapas. Ross claims that smoke from the Zapatista uprising
was first detected in March 1993 when two Mexican army officers were
ambushed in the highlands near San Cristobal.
The army sent 4,000 troops to scour the region for the guerrillas,
and a firefight ensued in the municipality of Ocosingo on May 20th -
a skirmish which resulted in an additional four army losses. News accounts
of the firefight were widespread throughout Mexico at the time. In addition,
the Mexican weekly Proceso published at least four additional
detailed reports on the insurgency between March and August of 1993
- all of which appeared on Mexico City newsstands. Moreover, an extensive
official report of the goings-on in Chiapas had been in the possession
of then Mexican Secretary of the Interior Patrocinio Gonzalez as early
as May, 1993. Finally, San Cristobal bishop Samuel Ruiz had for some
time prior to 1993 been making known to everyone who would listen the
existence of the embryonic guerrilla movement. Why then was the U.S.
government seemingly caught off guard?
"The Clinton Administration had at least four access routes
to foreknowledge of the guerrilla uprising - shared resources with
Mexican military resources; independent U.S. military intelligence
via the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administrations air and ground
surveillance of the region, which has become prime drug smuggling
country; high diplomatic interchanges; and CIA evaluations of the
Zapatista capacity. State Department assertions that the U.S. did
not have a clue about the uprising are not credible."
In other words, if Proceso, Bishop Ruiz, the Mexican Secretary
of the Interior, and countless numbers of ordinary Mexicans in Mexico
City and elsewhere throughout the country knew, the CIA and the White
House also surely knew. The proof was there - but it was being stepped
on and hidden by the Clinton Administration and the free-traders (i.e.,
the "investment community") in order to facilitate the "yes"
vote for NAFTA which was scheduled to take place in late 1993. Knowledge
of how widespread opposition to NAFTA was among Mexican compesinos would
have surely worked against Wall Street interests in the run-up to the
As we indicated earlier, the Chiapas story reveals the dark side of
the "new global economy" - one which goes far beyond "merely"
displacing wage-earners in First World countries. Globalization undercuts
peasant farming in the Third World by making it compete against the
giant agribusinesses of the First World. In the process, peasant agriculture
is ground down under the impress of a First World agricultural juggernaut,
eventually resulting in the forced migration of these peasants from
their homes in rural areas to the city where they are pressed into a
kind of industrial slavery for re-located First World industries (like
Ford, General Motors, General Electric, etc.), the products of which
are not destined for Third World customers, but for First World consumers.
The vacated peasant lands are then gathered up and reconstituted as
large farms very often controlled by interests in the employ of the
very First World agribusinesses which destroyed them in the first place.
It is precisely this fate - their enforced eviction from ancestral lands
and their subsequent indenturing into a form of industrial slavery -
against which the Zapatistas revolted in Chiapas.
- Released through the Knight Ridder Newspapers on February 22, 1995
and picked up by the Sacramento Bee the same day on page B-7.
- Maria Felix, El Andar Publications, March 8, 1995.
- Ana Carrigan's works include Palace of Justice, A Colombian Tragedy
(Four Walls, Eight Windows), 1993
- John Ross, "Chiapas, Missing the Story" in Lies of Our Times,
May 1994, pg. 7.
- "The Chase Report," Chiapas95 chiapas95 @mundo.eco.utexas.edu (University
of Texas, Austin).
- "The Chase Report," Chiapas95 [email protected] (University
of Texas, Austin).
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