Chiapas and the Zapatistas Face a Dramatic Increase in Violence

When discussing the increased violence in Chiapas, it’s helpful to remember that there is a neoliberal effort underway to bring indigenous peoples in southeast Mexico into the capitalist marketplace. The vehicle for bringing this about is a massive infrastructure development plan, originally named the Plan Puebla-Panama and then re-named the Mesoamerica Project.

Members of National Guard and Army Protecting Sinaloa Cartel in Chiapas

Chiapas has witnessed a huge growth in the presence of organized crime in recent years, with competing cartels battling for control of routes to traffic drugs and migrants. Collusion between the Armed Forces, organized crime and paramilitary groups is by no means a new phenomenon in Chiapas. This situation is further complicated by the presence of the National Guard, whose control was recently passed to the Secretariat of Defense. The scenario takes on an even more sinister character in the light of recent citizen complaints to President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador claiming that the Sinaloa Cartel if being protected by the same bodies that are supposed to be fighting organized crime.

Counterinsurgencies

Gilberto López y Rivas studies the forms and modes of counterinsurgency in the terrritories of the EZLN and Mexican southeast, finding its roots in the predominantly U.S. strategies that have devastated populations across the globe for over 100 years.

Nothing is the Same Anymore

Following the report last month from the Commission for Access to Truth and Justice in the Ayotzinapa case, the arrest of former Attorney General Murillo Karam, and the arrest warrants issued for dozens of military personnel, the parents of the 43 disappeared students are witnessing backtracking from positions of power, in particular the protection of the military. The victims’ families demand to know why.

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