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David Crow writes:
I have never seen any evidence of Cuban or foreign involvement in Chiapas, aside from a handful of Guatemalan refugees who joined the Zapatista Army for National Liberation (EZLN, in Spanish). If anyone can produce such evidence, I would be glad to review it.
Several books have been published in Mexico over the past several years attempting to discredit the EZLN as the work of non-indigenous, outside influences. The unstated assumption of these books is that Chiapanecan Indians (a word often used pejoratively in Mexico) are unable to think for themselves; thus, armed rebellion is necessarily the work of outsiders. Many that see a "black hand" in Chiapas and other social movements have a great stake in seeing those movements defeated.
My comment: I have no stake in Chiapas, but I do not think that becoming another Cuba would help the Chiapanecos. Chiapas has become a focal point for all kinds of possibly well-meaning but uninformed outsiders like Mme. Mitterand. They have decided to make village of Acteal the focal point of their propaganda. A Danish sculptor working on a piece to commemorate its tragedy was the most prominent of a group of foreigners just expelled. This is not to pass judgment on what happened at Acteal.
There is a whole network of people going to and from Cuba from many areas of Spanish America. LANS reports, which have a sharp anti-Cuban axe, provide nevertheless convincing details on this. If David wishes, I will ask that the be put on the LANS list.
This is not to justify the social structure of Latin America, which is disgraceful. I just do not want the are to go from the frying pan into the fire.
Ronald Hilton - 05/16/99