Sunday, October 29, 2006

Federal police are driving the striking teachers and protestors of the APPO (Asamblea Popular de los Pueblos de Oaxaca) from the "zocalo" (square) in the city of Oaxaca, southern Mexico. This is part of Mexico that I have visited twice myself, normally a very peaceful area known for its archaeological ruins and native crafts. For several months now the teachers union has been on strike against the governor of the state, demanding that he resign. The governor belongs to a different party from the PAN party which is in control of the federal government. Otherwise, I think that the federal crackdown would have begun months ago.

The state government has been waging a campaign of thuggery and harassment against the APPO throughout these protests, and there have been several teachers and protesters shot by the government thugs. An independent journalist from the United States, Brad Will, was killed on Friday while covering the protests from behind APPO barricades. Far worse is to be expected now that the federal troops have been called out, based upon the actions that they took back in July in the pueblo of San Salvador Atenco near Mexico City. Those that are carried away to prisons in police wagons may suffer the worst fate of all.

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