Guerrero in Flames


The citizens of Guerrero not only suffocate from the smoke of the multiplicity of fires that destroy thousand of hectares in the Sierra and the Montaña, but above all, we suffocate and are tormented by the fire of violence that expands in the 81 municipalities of the state of Guerrero. The rattling and gunpowder of AK 47’s are undermining the precarious life of the rural communities that survive on agricultural activities.

The hills are burned in preparation for planting, but also to expand the surface area of the poppy fields. The popular markets are burned, as is what happened in Coyuca de Benitez and now in Acapulco, to terrorize the small vendors that resist leaving their stores, or that cannot afford the money to be given to those that control the plaza. Tires are burned to block the roads, by a population that feels threatened by the police and military, as well as by organized crime. The bodies of youth are burned and are hurled into public to demonstrate the diabolical power of their attackers. The same federal government that is in charge of finding the historical truth is stacking files to argue that the 43 students of Ayotzinapa were burned in the dump of Cocula.

The fire is fueled by the corrupt government that has colluded with organized crime who are destroying the life of the people of Guerrero. It is the cross fire of the murderous bullets that are marking the fatal destiny of an illiterate youth. The flames that approach from all fronts carry the mark of the criminal organizations that have risen as a real power with territorial control. Those who fuel the fire are the local and state powers that work with criminal organizations. Their objective is to destroy their enemies with the greatest cruelty possible. The spectacle of violence is used to terrorize the population and create an apocalyptic scenario displacing formal power and legitimating the masters and men of illicit businesses.

The armed state and non-state actors set fire to everything they find in their path. They unite under one objective: destroy life and blind the future for the next generations. Killing and dismembering bodies, cutting them, burning them and burying them in clandestine graves, are expressions of the degradation of public life and the ruin of a government that has betrayed the people and prostituted politics. The themes of public opinion are the assassinated, the disappeared, the kidnapped, the extortions and the armed conflicts. With blood, our history is written and with blood, faces of the families that struggle against the evil forces are marked. Tombs are dug to hide the atrocities, to bury the truth and to cover up the guilty. The mothers and fathers of the 43, physically confront an impudent government that without scientific evidence sustains that their children were scorched.

Guerrero is the land that burns, the tierra caliente that is fought over with fire to take control of the poppy fields, to fight for the crumbs of the most prosperous businesses of the criminal economy in the world. It is a war for control of the drug corridors that flow into the tourist centers and in the capitals of the neighboring states. It is a fight to death for the transfer of heroin that blackens the earth, sky and sea, to arrive to the sanctuaries of criminal power in the United States. The sowing of poppy has triggered a fratricidal war in one of the states most combative and resistant. Guerrero has contributed with blood to abolish slavery and to struggle against social inequality and the exploitation of the poor.

The legacy of the servant of the nation, José Maria Morelos, of the grand insurgents of the War of Independence, has been modified by the governments, and used to justify their atrocities. Local bosses continue to be the expression of an outdated political system, which has in the political parties a type of work that mirrors the style of the mafia.

They are Los Rojos, Los Tequileros, Los Armadillos, La Mamilia Michoacana, Los Jefes, Los Granados among others, the new characters that exercise de facto power putting the state in the back seat. They are those that have imposed their law, have exercised their own government, and have charged a price for the right to live. They are those that have an army; with their arsenal of weapons; tools of sophisticated communication, fortunes and a multiplicity of legal and illegal businesses. Their wealth has allowed them to rub shoulders with the elites to form part of the untouchable classes. Organized crime is the counteroffer of legality, of the respect to life, of the construction of peace, of the protection of the rights of the people and of the respect of the state of rights. They are corruption, cooptation, criminality, destruction and death. They are those that lead the state and remain secure in the regions without any threat from police or military forces. This situation has been lived for years by the inhabitants of San Miguel Totolapan, who this week provoked a confrontation with organized crime groups, leading to the entrance of the military in the municipal head who launched tear gas toward the population. Testimony of the inhabitants gives us an outline of their understanding of the government action. In place of reestablishing order, they were left in a situation of greater risk while suffering the ridicule of the government.

“In San Miguel Totolapan, we are taken back, because the government played us as crooks. We thought that when they entered the town they were going to the Gavia to detain the Tequilero. Nothing happened. Better yet, they came to abuse us. They threw tear gas to disperse us. The only thing we wanted was to maintain our community guard so that other organized crime groups didn’t enter our community. As people, we are tired of so much evil. Of kidnappings, extortions, assassinations, and threats. We cannot endure so many abuses. We have told the government many times, but never has it done anything for our families. On the contrary, we have seen the police and army protect those that harm us.

The help that we asked for was counterproductive, because nothing served us. The police came to beat and detain us. They only arrived at the center of the community and didn’t go any further into the Sierra. We realized that they came to help the Tequilero, because the government functions as if we are the criminals, and that they arrived to restore order. There is no talk of the Tequilero. Nothing more is said of the problem of criminality that continues. Now we are those of San Miguel Totolapan, the narcotraffickers, the causes of insecurity. The governor has forgotten that it was the people that organized and raised their voice to say that they would not accept any more abuse. Thus, we organize and we support the population forming our community guard. As we haven’t seen any results, we have to search another manner to defend ourselves. Now that our defense has been effective, the government has accused us of being the cause of disorder. There is no doubt that the true bosses are not those that govern but those of organized crime, as is the case here with the Tequilero. That is why the people are angry, because it is no longer possible to withstand so much mockery and so much complicity. Our state will burn in flames until the violence and complicity with organized crime is stopped.”

This hell of Tierra Caliente, the same government searched for it because they were the ones that threw the gasoline. They allowed the Tequilero to be the master of the region. They allowed them to control this part of the Sierra at their leisure. They gave them so much power that they thought that they could also kill and kidnap the people of the community that did not accept their form of work. Now the government is angry because we did not allow their friends to continue working like before. That’s why they celebrate that there were no causalities, thinking they did a professional and neat job. Rather, this shows that those who resisted the entrance into the town were the people, the housewives, the young, the elderly and the parents. There were no people with high-powered weapons. We were people who were angry, who have the courage and dignity to defend our land and our heritage. We have ended with the illusion that the governor actually imposes order. There will be order for a few days, while the police and military are here, then the same hell will return and the government does not care that they kill and kidnap us as before.

Translated from the original here:


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