Brothers and Sisters of Xochimilco:
Indigenous Brothers and Sisters:
We would like to express our gratitude to the people of Xochimilco, who have not only allowed us to share their roof and their food, but who have also sheltered and protected us on the day before our entrance into Mexico City.
Hospitality for the poor who struggle, and solidarity with just causes, are nothing new for the people of Xochimilco.
Two years ago, during the Consulta for Indigenous Rights, you received our companeros and companeras from the EZLN. And four years ago, in 1997, you gave a warm reception to the March of the 1111.
But, many years before, these honorable lands supported the two greatest representatives of the Mexican Revolution: General Francisco Villa, Chief of the Division of the North, and General Emiliano Zapata, Chief of the Liberation Army of the South.
The revolution of those of below thus found support and sustenance from those of below, in the color of the earth.
The Liberation Army of the South represented not only the most impoverished sectors of the country and their aspirations. It also represented a new method of confronting power.
It did not involve taking and exercising it, but rather in the government's - whomever might be holding it - carrying out the demands of the people. That is why they fought against Di'az, as well as against Madero, Huerta and Carranza.
Zapatismo was not controllable in the terms of the politicians.
Allied with the people, the zapatistas could never be domesticated.
That is why the power of money repudiated him and called Emiliano Zapata "The Attila of the South."
Today, March 10, 2001, other zapatistas, those of us who are part of the EZLN, and representatives of the Indian peoples who make up the National Indigenous Congress, have come to Xochimilco, in the midst of attacks by the business powers and the political right.
Frightened by the growth of the color of the earth, the gentlemen of money take refuge in their fortresses, and from there they are squandering, not their money, but their stupidity and clumsiness.
If money were intelligent it would not be money.
Because of that, those who have much of it and amass it, become dressed by its color and acquire its shortsightedness and its ignorant arrogance.
Today, the March of Indigenous Dignity, the March of the Color of the Earth, is making money tremble, causing it to hysterically attempt to blot it out, as if it were possible to blot out the foundations, and still enjoy the luxury terrace and comfort.
Today, business leaders have a serious problem with the calendar. Where it says "2001," the businessmen are reading "1919." And where it says "March 10," they are reading "April 10."
Fear is disturbing the already damaged perceptions of the businessmen.
That, and their miniscule intelligence quotients, are preventing them from realizing that the century they called the "twentieth" has ended, and that the second millenium has been left behind.
They say that up there they think that money clothes and arranges everything.
That one can do the ridiculous, and then purchase applause that will turn it into wisdom.
But it is good for them to know, the gentlemen of money, that the times of yesterday will no longer be those of today nor those of tomorrow.
We shall no longer listen to their insults in silence.
Their threats shall no longer go unpunished.
They shall no longer humiliate those of us who are the color of earth which we are.
We have always had voice.
But it shall no longer be a murmur which lowers its head.
It shall now be a shout which lifts the gaze and which shall force them to see us as we are and to accept us as we are.
And so listen well:
We are the color of the earth!
Without us, money would not exist, and we know well how to live without the color of money.
But do not be concerned.
We have not come to exploit anyone, so we shall not engage in competition with you.
A house can always remain a house if it lacks the terrace or the upstairs floor.
But a house without foundation is nothing but a pile of rubble.
Lower your voice and listen, because there is now another voice which has not come to steal or to impose, but something more serious: to take your place.
This voice is ours.
The voice of those who are the color of the earth.
>From Xochimilco, Federal District.
Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee
- General Command of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.
P.S. Here, in Xochimilco, in the land which lent its light to Villa and to Zapata, we are sending the sixth message to Mexico City:
"With the dawn of the seventh day of the journey to which we gave collective birth, the word shall be veiled. On the shoulders of the wheat, we shall be bread with the all whom we are. The land which grows upward shall open its eyes and its ears to the step of the color of the earth, it shall, that is, open its arms. The day shall repeat the one in the mirror, and rebellion shall echo history. March shall see silence shattered and the dark voice shall be, once again, among all those which sing."
Originally published in Spanish by the EZLN ______________________ Translated by irlandesa