Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/30/2013 (11 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Mexico revolutionary 'bad guys' becoming more reclusive and shut off from the world

This week marks the twentieth anniversary of the arrival of the Zapatistas. Capturing six towns, Mayan peasants sporting ski masks commanded world attention. The movement's spokesman, Subcomandante Marcos, sporting a ski mask while smoking a pipe, captured the world's imagination. Very little of that fervor exists today. The group has lost much worldwide support, and has grown ever more reclusive.

Revolutionary souvenirs of the Zapatistas, sold in the the more populated outposts are ironic for a movement that rejects capitalism.

Revolutionary souvenirs of the Zapatistas, sold in the the more populated outposts are ironic for a movement that rejects capitalism.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/30/2013 (11 months ago)

Published in Americas

Keywords: Chiapas, Marcos, Mexico, Zapatista, rebels, leftists, indigenous


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Zapatista territory still exists in Mexico's southernmost state, Chiapas. The area is mostly tiny villages. The landscape, with its withered corn stalks and untended land symbolically represents the unfulfilled promises of the revolutionaries.

The rebel control centers have been dubbed "caracoles," or snails. It's an appropriate name as the movement has essentially crawled to a standstill to withdraw into a shell.

There is a reason for the isolation and apathy. One man, who asked to remain unidentified, says the Zapatistas decided to forge ahead unattended after being betrayed so many times before.

The indigenous Chiapas are among Mexico's most underprivileged people. The Chiapas never benefited from the 1910 revolution's promise for agrarian reform. In addition, the Zapatistas were stymied when the government failed to deliver on a 1996 accord for greater autonomy and rights intended to pacify them.

The Zapatistas seized land, as much as 750,000 acres and created their own schools and clinics, rejecting state subsidies.

The Zapatistas last public appearance was last year, when 40,000 militants marched through various towns in masks and silence.

Spokesman Marcos has not been seen in public from his haven in the Lacandon jungle. His last media appearance was in 2006, when he zoomed out of the hills on a black motorcycle for a march across the nation. He intended to forge contact with other social movements. The six-month tour yielded very few tangible results. 

The only contact most outsiders can obtain is through communiques on the Zapatista Web site. In a what appears to be a telling statement about the current status of the movement, revolutionary souvenirs are sold in the more populated outposts.

The blatant marketing, ironic for a movement that rejects capitalism, many say, does not reflect the deep social changes that have occurred in the 38 autonomous municipalities.

Some point to positive social changes that have been made. "Girls are encouraged to be schooled and assume a more prominent role in society," Victor Hugo Lopez, director of the Human Rights Center Fray Bartoleme de las Casas says.

Clinics are also closer to where many indigenous peasants live and treatment is delivered in local languages, rather than Spanish as in most of the country.

Each community now has a school that delivers lessons in indigenous languages, which was rare before. The curriculum presents the Zapatista view of history, with a heavy emphasis on colonial exploitation.

Analysts say that the Zapatistas could move in a fresh direction yet again, but plans remain secretive for now.



---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More Americas

The great thaw: President Obama aims to destroy the last bastion of Cold War politics, easing relations between the U.S. and Cuba Watch

Image of After more than 50 years, relations between the U.S. and Cuba are starting to normalize, bringing hope that one of the last bastions of the Cold War can be laid low.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

On the heels of the White House announcement that they will be normalizing relations with Cuba-with whom the United States has had a cold relationship for decades-Cuba has announced that they will release an American that his been imprisoned there since 2009. LOS ... continue reading


'Chop-up houses' fill night air with cries of the slaughtered along Colombian riverbanks Watch

Image of Buenaventura, home to 370,000 people, is a key smuggling point for cocaine being transported by sea and overland through Central America and Mexico en route to the United States.

By Anastasia Moloney, Thomson Reuters Foundation

At night along the riverbanks of the Colombian port city of Buenaventura, residents say they can hear people scream and plea for mercy as they are cut up with chainsaws. BOGOTA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Gang members have been seen emerging from so-called ... continue reading


Our Lady of Guadalupe: The Woman Who Casts a Shadow Watch

Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe

By Deal W. Hudson

Having never been to a major Marian shrine, I didn't quite know what to expect. Some years ago, in the summer of 2004, I made a pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City. I went there, like other pilgrims, to ask for Her protection during a ... continue reading


Crazed Greenpeace activists destroy ancient Nazca lines - Peru outraged over Greenpeace publicity stunt Watch

Image of Greenpeace activists destroyed part of the ancient Nazca hummingbird, during a publicity stunt on December 8.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Peru has announced that they are going to file a lawsuit against Greenpeace, whose activists damaged a national monument during a publicity stunt. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The world famous Nazca lines were damaged after members of the group unfurled ... continue reading


Read the scathing words president of Uruguay has for Obama as six prisoners from Guantanamo Bay are sent to Uruguay Watch

Image of Uruguayan President Jose Mujica, who will leave office shortly, has made it clear that Uruguay would not hold or restrict the six Guantanamo detainees.

By Troy Dredge, Catholic Online

As part of the Obama White House's plan to finally shutter the holding tank for terrorist suspects, six suspected Al Qaeda militants are will sent from Guantanamo Bay to Uruguay. All six prisoners have been cleared for release since 2009. The United States has ... continue reading


Mexican church survives EIGHT YEARS of volcanic eruptions while surrounding town destroyed Watch

Image of The haunting images show a stark contrast between the barren ground and the holy building.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In the small Mexican village of San Juan Parangaricutiro is completely buried under lava -- save for its church. The volcano in question, Volcán de Parícutin, erupted for eight straight years beginning in 1943. Is it an Act of God . or just superior ... continue reading


'I am ready to die, 'Honduran priest says of his human rights' work Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Keenly aware of the fate of his predecessor, radio marketing director Carlos Mejia Orellana stabbing death, Father Ismael Moreno says his human rights work in Honduras will continue - unabated. With Orellana's murder still unsolved seven months later, Father ... continue reading


43 Mexican students BURNED ALIVE over fears they would interrupt speech Watch

Image of The 43 students had been missing since they disappeared near the southern city of Iguala on September 26 after being attacked by police.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In dry, unemotional voices, three cartel hit men reenacted the horrific massacre of 43 Mexican students for investigators. Using twigs and trash bags, the killers told investigators how they layered the victims "like a grill" before bathing them in gasoline and ... continue reading


Illegal abortions fifth leading cause of maternal deaths in Brazil Watch

Image of An independent study by the Social Medicine Institute at Rio de Janeiro's State University showed that 155,000 women were admitted to public hospitals suffering from complications from self-induced abortions in 2013.

By Adriana Brasileiro, Thomson Reuters Foundation

On Aug. 26, Jandira Magdalena dos Santos Cruz, 27, got into a white car at a bus station in the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. She was supposed to be taken to a clandestine abortion clinic to terminate a 16-week pregnancy. She never came home. RIO DE JANEIRO ... continue reading


If you think ISIS is bad, just look at what's going on in Mexico Watch

Image of Those who speak out against the Mexican drug cartels often find themselves attacked, abused, or even murdered.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While the world-and especially the United States-remains fixated on the brutal actions and conquests of the Islamic State, few are looking closer to home to see such brutality, sometimes on a larger and more horrifying scale. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


All Americas News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 7:10-14
10 Yahweh spoke to Ahaz again and said:11 ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
1 [Psalm Of David] To Yahweh belong the earth and all ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:26-38
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 20th, 2014 Image

St. Dominic of Silos
December 20: Benedictine abbot and defender of the faith. Born in Canas, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter