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PFP, Army Out of Oaxaca!

Defend APPO Against State Repression!

The following is a translation of a leaflet issued on November 26 by the Grupo Espartaquista de México, section of the International Communist Leaguge.

Yesterday, once again the brutal capitalist rulers unleashed massive repression against the APPO (Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca). At the end of the peaceful mass demonstration in Oaxaca City—which demanded the resignation of the Oaxacan governor-executioner Ulises Ruiz Ortiz, freedom for jailed activists and the withdrawal of the Federal Preventative Police [PFP]—the marchers planned to peacefully  “surround”  the PFP agents in the City’s historical district for 48 hours. The PFP was already waiting for the marchers: agents dressed as civilians opened fire against the marchers, while the police launched tear-gas bombs against the protesters. La Jornada (26 November) reports that at least three people were killed by gunfire, although the figure is still not confirmed, and more than 140 were injured—at least 20 of them by gunshot—and 100 arrested. On Friday night, two members of the APPO had been kidnapped, César Mateos Benítez and Luis Sosa Campos. Ulises Ruiz now threatens massive arrests against those who defended themselves from the police attack yesterday, without “distinguishing between the acts of vandalism and those who participate in some way at the negotiating tables.” Since last May, when the teachers strike began, there have been 300 people arrested—57 of  whom remain in prison—63 people disappeared and 17 dead.

This sinister attack must not pass with impunity! The Grupo Espartaquista de México, section of the International Communist League, stands in solidarity with the struggle of the Oaxacan masses and calls for the entire workers movement to protest against this new and brutal attack. As we wrote in a 29 October leaflet, “The teachers and the APPO must not stand alone against the murderous repression of the capitalist state. The attack against teachers is an attack aimed at the entire workers movement, and it is in the interests of the workers movement to defend the teachers in Oaxaca. The industrial working class must flex its powerful muscle through strike actions in defense of the Oaxaca teachers and the APPO.” Free all those arrested now! Drop all the charges! PFP, army out of Oaxaca! Defend the APPO against state repression!

In the face of the increasing social unrest fed by the brutal rightist starvation  policies of the PAN [National Action Party] government, the bourgeoisie itself is divided and fearful of a broader social explosion. On the first of September, a massive police mobilization put a large part of Mexico City under a virtual state of siege. Nonetheless, with protests in the streets and in Congress, [president Vicente] Fox  decided to avoid a confrontation and did not give his last state of the union speech before Congress. The PRD [Party of the Democratic Revolution], the APPO and others have again called for massive demonstrations for December 1 with the purpose of preventing [PAN candidate] Felipe Calderón’s taking office as the new president, and certainly the PAN does not want to start its new term with such an affront. For over a week, the PAN government had already surrounded the Congress with police and installed checkpoints around it, and now the police mobilization will surely be bigger. With this new attempt to smash the APPO once and for all, the government is launching a threat against the unions and all social activists, including its own bourgeois opponents in the PRD.

 The fanatically obscurantist PAN members are truly a very dangerous beast. The bourgeois PRD has tried to position itself upon the social discontent and co-opt the struggle in Oaxaca, calling for the withdrawal of the PFP and the dismissal of Ulises Ruiz. An important part of the Oaxacan masses, as well as a large part of the working class and the poor on a national level, see the PRD as representing their interests. But this is a bourgeois party, whose differences with the PAN are at bottom over how to administer the capitalist system of exploitation. When the struggle goes beyond its control, the PRD will not hesitate one moment  in unleashing the repressive forces against those who today support it, just as it did against the students during the UNAM [National Autonomous University of Mexico] strike of 1999, against the workers of Sicartsa this past April, against the peasants of Atenco, among many other examples.

Combating all illusions in the bourgeoisie and its parties, the Trotskyists of the Grupo Espartaquista de México fight for the construction of a Leninist-Trotskyist workers party to lead the working class towards socialist revolution—the only way of stopping once and for all the brutal capitalist repression against the workers and the poor.