The Narco News Bulletin

August 15, 2018 | Issue #67 - Reporting on the Drug War and Democracy from Latin America

Javier Sicilia: The Resurrection of the Country is the Goal of Nonviolent Insurrection

"Not Only Are There Criminals Outside, There Are Also Criminals Who Protect Them from Inside Institutions" Says the Poet and Journalist

By Patricia Guerrero
Special to The Narco News Bulletin

April 27, 2011
This report appears on the internet at

MEXICO CITY, APRIL 26, 2011: In the midst of a political climate that is shaping the approval of a federal security law and with it the normalization of a state of exception, social fighters gathered to propose the construction of a social pact to reorganize Mexico and reiterate that society is fed-up with the climate of violence that is pervading the country.

Javier Sicilia-joined by ex-president of the Mexico City Human Rights Commission Emilio Álvarez Icaza, priest and immigrant rights defender Alejandro Solalinde, president of Causa Común María Elena Morera, Chihuahua Mormon Julián LeBarón, and ex-president of Mexico United Against Crime Eduardo Gallo-made a call for others to join a silent march that will begin May 5 in Cuernavaca and finish May 8 at the zócalo in Mexico City. This demonstration will join contingents from Ciudad Juárez, the state of Mexico, Mexico City, Guerrero, Puebla and Tlaxcala. At the moment there are 38 mobilizations set to take place in different cities throughout the country.

Malú García, the sister of a woman assassinated in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua in 2001, left the city after receiving death threats and now joins the struggle in search for justice. DR 2011 Alejandro Meléndez
One of the goals of this mobilization is to return dignity to the names of the dead who "in the eyes of the State have been counted as collateral damage or statistics," Sicilia said. However, the march is only the tip of the iceberg. It will be a symbol of a national movement looking to promote a social pact to refound the nation and rebuild the social fabric that has been torn apart in various areas throughout the country due to the "war against drugs." Elena Morera stressed that the pact being made "is not with the criminals, it's a pact between citizens, and between citizens and the authorities." In a country with crime like Mexico, where there have been indicators of the membership organized crime has from important figures in the country's political life, "nor do we want to negotiate an agreement with the criminals who conceal themselves through the law," Sicilia said. "Not only are there criminals outside, but there's also the crime that protects them, and that is from inside the institutions."

The silent march for justice and dignity is demanding a horizontal pact that emanates from society, not through meetings between figures in the country's elite political sphere; to achieve this it is important that the people fully throw themselves into the task of refounding their country. Álvarez Icaza stressed that it will not be enough to go into the streets. One of the aims of the movement is to "create community organizing on a local level, the neighborhood level, so that it becomes a process of civic and public participation," a nonviolent mobilization to reorganize the country. In the same vein, Álvarez Icaza said that the a desire for peace is not achieved passively. It is necessary for people to assume a joint responsibility in order for change to maintain its authenticity, as it is a solution that is conceived in the depths of the social framework. The meaning, during the press conference, of the term "joint responsibility," is far from the unity that that Mexican President Felipe Calderón demanded when he re-baptized the fight against narco-trafficking, when he asked society to assume the costs-that is to say, the dead.

Press conference at CENCOS facilities where different representatives from civil society called for a silent march for justice and dignity from May 5-8. DR 2011 Alejandro Meléndez
Father Solalinde, a human rights defender, is a part of the church that is close to the reality of those sectors in the population who are hurting, like immigrants. He made an important call for the resurrection of the country, amidst the nonviolent insurrection of the status quo. Solalinde challenged churches in Mexico to join a national pact "that is not against the government, but is against the intentional or non-intentional situation that is killing our people."

Sicilia laid out the emergency of the current situation: a context in the war has been established where it appears that the State and the criminals have made an agreement to attack and intimidate civil society, where fear has become the best weapon to silence dignified voices, the voices that search, the dissident voices, and the voices that call for better living conditions. In this regard, to unite these voices that aim for different goals but share a common search for justice and dignity, Sicilia asked the media to repeat the call and invite people to join this movement that unifies the rejection by broad sectors of the population towards the "war on drugs" policy imposed by Calderón.

Finally, he read a letter sent from Nobel Peace Prize winner Adolfo Perez Esquivel that rejects the "stigmatization of criminals that applies to the victim's families." It also noted that those who are presumed guilty (as in "you must be guilty of something" or "what law are you breaking") is attributed to the disappearances, kidnappings and murders that have been a fundamental part of this stigmatization. Just remember what happened early last year when Calderón called young people who were murdered in Villas de Salvárcar, Ciudad Juárez gang members.

Regarding the bill for the security law, which is shaping to be approved by a majority of lawmakers in the Chamber of Deputies, he noted the danger it represents to civil life as we know it. The modifications to the law-which among other things will give the president the ability to use the armed forces against social, political, electoral and labor movements-open a door for the state to apply the force against the people in an extreme and discretionary way, wrapped in an arbitrary legal dressing.

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