Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

March 31, 2023

Mohawk Nation News 'Canada Will Soon Be Dissolved'


Mohawk Nation News

Lots is happening and we need basic information.


March 30, 2023

Vatican's Renunciation of Discovery Doctrine Lacks Accountability -- Survivors of Boarding Schools

Carlisle Indian School, Pennsylvania, 1884

Native Healing Coalition believes Vatican's statement renouncing Discovery Doctrine lacks accountability 

Logo for email signature.png

March 30, 2023

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota -- After decades of advocacy from Native leaders and advocates, the Vatican formally repudiated the Doctrine of Discovery, which was created by the Catholic Church and later incorporated into US law. This doctrine led to the colonization and appropriation of Native lands and informed numerous harmful assimilation policies. 


The following statement from Deborah Parker (Tulalip), CEO of the National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition, can be quoted in part or in full. 


“While the Vatican’s decision to renounce the Doctrine of Discovery is the right one, it downplays the Church’s role and accountability for the harm it has caused to Native peoples. It does not change the fact that the Church’s views gave permission to colonizers to take Native lands and assimilate Native peoples. 


Biden's Green Energy: Lithium Americas Digging into Paiute Massacre Site

Biden's Green Energy: Lithium Americas Digging into Paiute Massacre Site

By Brenda Norrell

Censored News

President Biden thinks this is green energy. This drone video reveals the Canadian corporation LIthium Americas is digging into Thacker Pass, where Paiute women, children and elderly were massacred by the US Calvary and left there.

The lithium mine will devastate the region's water and wildlife. Biden and the federal courts are championing this horrific desecration of a sacred site, and violation of the natural world.

Watch video:

March 27, 2023

San Carlos Apache Nation: High Risk Jet Combat Training over Native Lands


High-risk jet combat training by a private company, above Native lands, spans from San Carlos Apache, Whiteriver Apache and Tohono O'odham lands in Arizona, to Paiute Shoshone lands in Nevada

By Brenda Norrell

Censored News

SAN CARLOS APACHE NATION -- High-risk jets few combat training flights over Native lands last week. The same training jet that flew combat training missions over the Tohono O'odham Nation last week, flew over the San Carlos Apache Nation, and southern edge of the Whiteriver Apache Nation, on Friday morning.

The fighter jet departed from Goodyear airport and returned to Luke Airforce Base in Phoenix, Arizona area. It is one of the second-hand jets purchased from the French military by the private training company ATAC.

ATAC has contracts with the U.S. Navy, Marines and Air Force. ATAC has a history of crashes and accidents, including those of pilots based on Paiute Shoshone land at Fallon Bombing Range in Nevada.

Throughout last week, ATAC jets flew training missions over the western and eastern regions of the Tohono O'odham Nation.

The increased military flights, alarming to Tohono O'odham who live on the land, and the spy towers combine for increased militarization. The Israeli defense contract Elbit Systems built a spy tower -- integrated fixed tower -- in the heart of the Tohono O'odham Nation, not on the border. Tohono O'odham said they were unaware of this mountaintop spy tower, which allows U.S. Border Patrol agents to spy on, and stalk, O'odham.

Read our in-depth report on these flights at Censored News.

March 23, 2023

Bridge to the Ancestors: Walk Run with Carrizo/Comecrudo Youths in Texas Borderlands


March 23, 2023

CONTACT: Antoinette Reyes,

This weekend the Carrizo/Comecrudo Tribe of Texas (Esto’k Gna) is holding a youth-led, week-long run and walk from the Permian Basin to the Rio Grande Valley to bring awareness to the harmful, exploitative and unjust impacts of extractive industries on their sacred lands.

The event, titled Bridge to the Ancestors, will start with an opening ceremony on March 24th at Monahans Sandhills State Park in Monahans, Texas. Over the next 10 days, tribal members will visit eight communities, culminating in a celebration on April 2 in Port Isabel, Texas.

March 22, 2023

California: The State of Genocide and Forced Sterilizations of Native People

Floyd Red Crow Westerman


California: The State of Genocide and Forced Sterilizations of Native People

By Brenda Norrell

Censored News

Floyd Westerman, shortly before he passed, announced his plan for a series of films on the genocide of Native people. Floyd said he planned to begin in California, exposing the mission, gold mines, and attempts to exterminate Native people, and then continue east to produce this series.

The first of these films was completed before Floyd passed.

'Native american Holocaust -- Exterminate Them! The California Story,' documents the holocaust committed against the native people of California by the state and federal governments. Floyd reveals the bullets, smallpox blankets, kidnapping of Native children, and oppressive concentration camps, carried out by California and the United States government in this attempt at extermination.

Apache Stronghold Defends Oak Flat in Federal Court

"We are giving Mother Earth our voice, to be heard." -- Wendsler Nosie

By Brenda Norrell 
Censored News

PASADENA, California -- Apache Wendsler Nosie said the arguments heard in the Ninth Circuit Court show the U.S. government's attempts of erasure, erasure of the people and their connection to the land, erasure of their right to pray in their sacred place at Oak Flat.

"This country is a corporate country. It is not even thinking about our children, the earth, the things that give us life," Nosie said after Tuesday's rehearing of the federal court case.

Nosie urged Native people to be part of the spiritual struggle. He said if their leaders only care about money, then they are on the wrong road, and that the spiritual road is the one to be on. He urged tribal leaders to tell people the truth.

"Now we know why Biden hasn't helped, anybody hasn't helped, because that is not their priority, of the people."

March 21, 2023

Journey well our friend, Buck Sampson

Journey well our friend, Buck Sampson, who always supported his son Carl 'Bad Bear' Sampson on the Longest Walks, and helped Bad Bear provide photos to Censored News. We will remember you well our friend, Brenda, Censored News.

March 18, 2023

Quechan Running and Singing Away a Gold Mine on Sacred Land


Now, Saturday afternoon: Traditional Ribbon Skirt and Gourd and Tin Can Singing Gathering: Quechan host gathering in Winterhaven, California, to stop a gold mining from destroying sacred land. Photos copyright Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham.

March 17, 2023

Indian Country Welcomes Apache Stronghold Convoy Headed to Federal Court

Apache Stronghold Convoy

Lithium Americas and Biden Violating Sacred Ground at Paiute Massacre Site on Thacker Pass

A drone video on Friday shows the destruction underway as the Canadian corporation Lithium Americas destroys the earth where Paiute were massacred by the U.S. Calvary at Thacker Pass in northern Nevada. Biden is applauding the lithium mine on the Paiute Massacre Site -- where murdered women and children's remains were left scattered by the Calvary -- as "green energy." For Paiute, it is heartbreaking.

'Mohawk Warrior Society: A Handbook of Sovereignty and Survival' now in French

The Mohawk Warrior Society: A Handbook of Sovereignty and Survival was given a full-page review in Friday’s issue of Le Monde.

No Place for Whales: The U.S. Military's Poisonous Legacy in Indian Country

No Place for Whales: The U.S. Military is still cleaning up its hazardous waste strewn and dumped in Alaska, at the same time that Biden approves more oil drilling in the Arctic.

A Slow and Toxic Genocide

The U.S. military's poisonous legacy in Indian country

U.S. Military's Strewn Undetonated Bombs, Napalm Burn Pits, and Buried Weapons

by Brenda Norrell
Censored News
August 2004
Updated March 17, 2023

President Biden has approved more oil drilling in the Arctic, while the trail of the U.S. military's hazardous waste has never been cleaned up. Native Americans have been exposed to the toxic legacy of two World Wars and the Cold War, with undetonated bombs, mustard gas, nerve gas, napalm, live shells and secret radioactive dumps strewn across Indian country.

Native Americans were first the victims of physical genocide and later the targets of a slow and toxic genocide.

March 15, 2023

American Indian Genocide Museum in Austin

American Indian Genocide Museum at South by Southwest, SXSW, Conference Expo in Austin, Texas

By Steve Melendez President/ Co-Founder
American Indian Genocide Museum

We are here today at the SXSW Conference and Expo here in Austin, Texas telling our story because we know if we don't, no one else will. We are here today to bring awareness that past injustices are still being experienced today. We are here today to bring awareness that the racism of the past is still the cornerstone of American laws. Gone perhaps are the scalp bounties paid for Indian men, women, and children but, on the other hand, not one treaty has ever been honored.

March 14, 2023

Apache Stronghold Back in Court Fighting for Oak Flat March 2023


Apache Stronghold back in court fighting for Oak Flat

Ninth Circuit to rehear the appeal of Native Americans and their allies 

By Apache Stronghold

March 15, 2023 

A group of Western Apaches and their allies are headed back to federal court to protect their most sacred site from complete destruction by a foreign-owned mining company. On Tuesday, the Ninth Circuit will hear arguments again in Apache Stronghold v. United States after the court decided last fall to hear the case “en banc” — meaning in front of a full panel of eleven judges. Becket, along with attorneys Michael V. Nixon and Clifford Levenson, are defending the Apaches’  right to continue their longstanding religious practices at Oak Flat. 

Since time immemorial, Western Apaches have come to Oak Flat for their most important and longstanding religious ceremonies that cannot take place anywhere else. The sacred site is on the  National Register of Historic Places and has been protected from mining and other destructive practices for decades. In 2014, however, the government ordered Oak Flat to be sold to Resolution  Copper, a foreign-owned mining company that plans to turn the site into a two-mile-wide and  1,100-foot-deep crater. Apache Stronghold—a coalition of Apaches, other Native peoples, and non-Native allies—sued the federal government to halt the demolition of Oak Flat.  

After the Ninth Circuit ruled against them last summer, the court then decided to reconsider its decision—giving Oak Flat another chance. Apache Stronghold asks the court to protect Oak Flat just as it would protect any church, mosque, or synagogue from government destruction. 


Oral argument in Apache Stronghold v. United States 


Luke Goodrich, vice president & senior counsel at Becket 

Attorneys Michael V. Nixon and Clifford Levenson 


Tuesday, March 21, 2023, at 10:00 a.m. PDT 


Listen to the live stream here:  

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit - YouTube 

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit 

125 S Grand Ave 

Pasadena, CA, 91105 

Courtroom 3

For more information or to arrange an interview, contact Ryan Colby at or 202-349-7219. Interviews can be arranged in English, Mandarin, French, German, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. 

Additional Information

Case profile video: Sacred Lands and Copper Ore: Apaches Fight for their Ancestral Lands Case Page: Apache Stronghold v. United States (B-roll, images and legal documents)  

Legal Doc: U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s Opinion in Apache Stronghold v. United  States (June 24, 2022) 


Becket is a non-profit, public-interest law firm dedicated to protecting the free expression of all religious traditions and has a 100% win rate before the United  States Supreme Court. For over 20 years, it has successfully defended clients of all faiths, including Buddhists, Christians, Jews, Hindus,  Muslims, Native Americans, Sikhs, and Zoroastrians (read more here).

Media Contact: Ryan Colby | |

Quechan Spirit Run, Traditional Songs and Dinner March 18, 2023

Update: Quechan Running and Singing Away a Gold Mine on Sacred Land
Photos as it happens by Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham, at Censored News.

March 13, 2023

Tortuguita, with hands up, was shot 14 times with pistol and shotgun blasts

Independent Autopsy Reveals Tortuguita Killed While Seated with Hands Raised -- Autopsy reveals the young forest defender was shot 14 times, including in the face, with a pistol, shotgun slug and shotgun pellets by Georgia State Police

By Atlanta Community Press Collective
Censored News

The family of slain activist Manuel “Tortuguita” Esteban Paez Terán released the findings of the independent autopsy today that indicates Tortuguita was killed by a Georgia State Patrol (GSP) SWAT team while seated in a “cross-legged, with the left leg partially over the right leg,” and had their hands up, palms facing toward their upper body at the time of their death.

The full findings, conducted by a forensic pathologist, Kris Sperry, M.D., on Jan. 31 at the Connor-Westbury Funeral home in Griffin, Georgia, reveal Tortuguita was shot 14 times, with wounds stemming from a mixture of predominately handgun caliber bullets as well as both a shotgun slug and shotgun pellets with trajectories that indicate Tortuguita was facing their killers. Sperry’s report states, “it is impossible to tell if [Tortuguita] had been holding a firearm, or not holding a firearm, either before [they were] shot or while [they were] being shot the multiple times.” One observation the report does make is that Tortuguita raised their “hands and arms up and in front of [their] body” during the course of the shooting.

Sperry also asserts that, “none of the identified firearm wounds exhibited any evidence of close range firing (the presence of gunpowder soot and/or stippling).” This is particularly notable, as there were gunshot wounds in both of Tortuguita’s hands which would likely show evidence of gunpowder residue had they fired their gun at the GSP trooper. The report notes that gunpowder residue “may have been washed from the body during the first autopsy, but this is very unlikely.”

These findings stand contrary to early reports released by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), the agency heading the investigation into the the killing. According to the GBI, Tortuguita fired on a GSP trooper first and was killed by return fire. Two days after the raid the GBI released an image of the Smith & Wesson M&P Shield they allege Tortuguita shot a trooper with, and stated there is a ballistics match between the bullet recovered from the injured trooper and Tortuguita’s gun.

Activists believe that friendly fire caused the trooper’s injuries. One of the four body camera videos released by the Atlanta Police Department (APD) Feb. 6 supports this assessment. In it, an APD officer can be heard remarking, “you fucked your own guy up,” a few minutes after the shooting. At the time APD released an initial 14 videos to the family’s lawyers and four videos to the general public. The department separately stated to both the family’s lawyers and the general public that more footage would be released on a rolling basis. More than a month later, no additional videos are available.

The GBI’s lead role in the investigation is an issue for activists as well. They cite the participation of GBI agents in the initial raid that led to the death of Tortuguita as reason the agency should recuse itself and have an independent investigator take over the case.

The DeKalb County District Attorney, Sherry Boston recused her office from the prosecution of the case a week after the raid, citing the participation of her office in the raid as reason for the recusal.

The Paez Terán family is represented by Spears and Filipovitz, a civil rights law firm in DeKalb County, which filed a Georgia Open Records Act (GORA) Lawsuit against the City of Atlanta late last week over executive interference by the GBI and Georgia Attorney General’s (AG) office.

On Feb. 13, the GBI emailed APD requesting the department not release any additional body camera footage. A day later, the Georgia Attorney General’s office emailed the City of Atlanta Department of Law providing a legal basis for APD to withhold additional videos from the family. A Feb. 15 email from APD to the lawyers for the Paez Terán family stated that the Department would release no additional footage, citing the GBI and AG advisory emails as the reason why the department’s position changed.

The GORA lawsuit requests the Superior Court of Fulton County order the City of Atlanta to turn over the additional body camera footage and pay for the family’s legal fees in the case.

Vice reports:

"Lawyers for the family of 26-year-old Manuel Esteban Paez Teran, known as Tortuguita, released the results of that autopsy in a press conference Monday. The report also showed they were shot at least 14 times, including in the face."

Tortuguita "was shot so many times and by different firearms that the tracks running through the body converge and intersect," said Brian Spears, one of the lawyers representing Tortuguita’s family. "Manuel was looking death in the face, hands raised, when killed."

"Tortuguita was a prominent voice in the “forest defenders” or “Stop Cop City” movement in Atlanta, Georgia. Environmental and anti-police activists have been camping out in treehouses as part of their protest against a planned $90 million police training center on 400 acres of South River Forest (also called the Weelaunee Forest) in the Atlanta area."

Biden Approves Oil Drilling in Arctic: 199 Wells of Destruction

Biden Administration Approves Major Alaskan Arctic Drilling Project

Separate Step Protects Areas of Arctic Ocean Not Currently at Risk of Drilling

By Center for Biological Diversity
Censored News
Translated into French for Censored News
by Christine Prat

WASHINGTON— The Biden administration released the final Willow Master Development Plan today, greenlighting the oil development project in Alaska’s Western Arctic. The final version of the project would allow for drilling at three pads.

“Biden approved Willow knowing full well that it’ll cause massive and irreversible destruction, which is appalling,” said Kristen Monsell, a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “People and wildlife will suffer, and extracting and burning more fossil fuel will warm the climate even faster. Biden has no excuse for letting this project go forward in any form. New Arctic drilling makes no sense, and we’ll fight hard to keep ConocoPhillips from breaking ground.”

Willow would permanently scar the largest undeveloped area in the United States, jeopardize the health and traditional practices of nearby Indigenous communities, and harm essential wildlife habitat for polar bears, migratory birds, caribou and other iconic species.

The Arctic is warming four times faster than the rest of the planet, worsening sea-level rise, sea-ice melt and permafrost thaw. ConocoPhillips’ plan involves using giant chillers to refreeze thawing permafrost to ensure a solid drilling surface.

The project involves drilling up to 199 wells. The company will also build and operate a processing facility, hundreds of miles of ice roads, hundreds of miles of pipelines, an airstrip, and a gravel mine in the northeastern corner of the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.

The project could produce up to 576 million of barrels of oil, resulting in more than 239 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions over 30 years.

The Trump administration rushed approval of the Willow project in late 2020, and the Center, along with Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace and Earthjustice, challenged the approval in court.

In August 2021 a federal judge held the project approval unlawful for failing to adequately consider its climate impacts or the harm it would cause to polar bears. The court threw out the approval of the project and remanded the matter to the agency.

The Bureau of Land Management released an environmental impact statement for the project in February. It indicated that Willow would receive final approval but would likely be smaller than what was initially proposed.

On Sunday the Biden administration announced protections from oil and gas leasing for 2.8 million acres of the Beaufort Sea. Coupled with protections President Obama put in place in 2016, this means the entire Arctic Ocean is now protected. But that area was not at immediate risk of new leasing.

“It’s insulting that Biden thinks this will change our minds about the Willow project,” Monsell said. “Protecting one area of the Arctic so you can destroy another doesn’t make sense, and it won’t help the people and wildlife who will be upended by the Willow project. We need to protect the entire Arctic and stop building massive oil and gas developments that will contribute to greenhouse gas emissions for years to come.”

Sunday’s announcement also states the administration’s intent to release a proposed rule to consider additional protections for certain onshore areas in the Western Arctic known as “special areas.” The announcement was silent about addressing other areas of the Western Arctic currently open to oil drilling.

“Even one new oil well in the Arctic is one well too many,” Monsell said. “If Biden wants to protect the Arctic, he needs to protect all of it. The president has left us in the cold and missed a major opportunity to live up to his climate commitments. This project is on weak legal ground, and we’re gearing up for action.”


Kristen Monsell

March 12, 2023

The Color of the Earth -- Remembering the great caravan, a time for Indigenous heroes

In Zocalo Plaza, after two weeks on the road, this is what we found waiting in Mexico City. A half million people, with an acre of police attack dogs ready on the outskirts of town. As the caravan traveled into the city, mile after mile, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, lined the streets in neighborhoods, chanting “Zapata Vive!” Zapata is alive! and “No estan solos.” You are not alone! Aboard the Sonora bus, the cries sound back, “Zapata Vive!” As Marcos speaks to the people, aboard the Sonoran bus, they dance in the aisles. Nahuatls from Guerrero, overwhelmed and overjoyed by the flood of love, find a new strength. Jose Trinidad, Nahuatl, says, “If we do not do it for ourselves, who will do it for us? We struggle because we have nothing, not even anything to eat." -- Remembering the great caravan, a time for Indigenous heroes. -- Brenda Norrell

The Seven Messages

From the Zapatista Army
Advance on Mexico City

The First Key

From Temoaya, State of Mexico
March 5, 2001

Brothers and Sisters:

Starting today, we shall begin sending messages to Mexico City.
There are seven messages.
Each one of them has a meaning on its own, and they have exponential
meaning, that is, the one plus the two has meaning, the one plus the two
plus the three another meaning, and so on, until the seventh is complete.
Once the seventh has arrived, we shall enter Mexico City.
The First Key:
"You have nothing to fear.

Let those fear who close their ears and mouths to hearing and speaking with
those whom we are. They shall then be set aside. They shall find
themselves impotent as those without voice recover their voice and those
without face finally recover their face. Then their pursuits shall be as
nothing, those which are those of the conquistadors, those of the viceroys,
those of the conservatives who wanted to make us their empire, those of the
Porfirio landowners, those of Carlos Salinas de Gortari, those of Ernesto
None of them exist now.
And we, we are here.
History has a place for everyone. One takes it, or one leaves it. In
adding and subtracting, not only the "yes's" and "no's" are added, but also
the silences."

The Second Key
From Tepoztlán, Morelos
March 6, 2001

"The silence which we - who are the color of the earth - are has been
shattered. Above its pieces, we are raising ourselves up.
The possibility of our becoming again what we once were, and what we are
not, is not at stake.
Neither is our being what others turn us into.
What is at stake is whether or not the place we already have, and in which
we are, is recognized.
It is the possibility of being with everyone and not under the others.
The small we - of the great we which we are - does not matter.
Everyone is important: those who make laws and those who legitimize them.
Those who make history and those who write it."

'The Zapatistas are Coming!'

The Third Key
From Iguala, Guerrero
March 7, 2001

"This is Mexico. In order to make war one must challenge the government.
In order to achieve the peace with justice and dignity, one must also
challenge the government. We, thus, are challenging whoever objects. We
are challenging them."

The Fourth Key
From Cuautla, Morelos
March 7, 2001

"We shall, then, walk the same path of history, but we shall not repeat it.
We are from before, but we are new."

The Fifth Key
From Milpa Alta, Mexico City
March 8, 2001

"Those of us who take on a name and a mission, we are clothed and protected. He gave us the "nos" that we carry. The "yesses" are an inheritance from the principal ones that are the color of the earth. We don't have two faces. Two feet, yes we do. He who is one is she who is one, is the dignified and rebel woman who walks us. When the moon is a queen who carries three sadnesses, she announces that for three nights the force will be made stronger in the color of the earth.
"The seventh day of passage that left from the house of the Purépecha dawning, the color of the earth will paint all the lands that grow toward above. Only then will the pain begin to die. And the color of we who are the earth will dance with all the colors."

The Sixth Key
From Xochimilco, Mexico City
March 10, 2001

"On the seventh day dawning from the step that we gave birth to collectively, the word will be veiled. On the shoulders of wheat, we will be bread with everything that we are. The land that grows toward above will open its eyes and ears to the color of the earth. That is to say, it will open its arms to us.
"The day will reflect the one in the mirror and the rebellion will reiterate history. March will see the silence made into splinters and another voice, the brown voice, will be among all the voices that sing."

The Seventh Key
From the Heart of México
March 11, 2001

"The Seventh Key is..
You "

Words of the EZLN
March 11, 2001.
In the Zócalo of Mexico City.
Mexico City:

We have arrived.
We are here.
We are the National Indigenous Congress and zapatistas who are, together,
greeting you.
If the grandstand where we are is where it is, it is not by accident. It
is because, from the very beginning, the government has been at our backs.
Sometimes with artillery helicopters, sometimes with paramilitaries,
sometimes with bomber planes, sometimes with war tanks, sometimes with
soldiers, sometimes with the police, sometimes with offers for the buying
and selling of consciences, sometimes with offers for surrender, sometimes
with lies, sometimes with strident statements, sometimes with forgetting,
sometimes with expectant silences. Sometimes, like today, with impotent
That is why the government never sees us, that is why it does not listen to
If they quickened their pace a bit, they might catch up with us.
They could see us then, and listen to us.
They could understand the long and firm perspective of the one who is
persecuted and who, nonetheless, is not worried, because he knows that it
is the steps that follow which require attention and determination.

Brother, Sister:
Indigenous, worker, campesino, teacher, student, neighbor, housewife,
driver, fisherman, taxi driver, stevedore, office worker, street vendor,
brother, unemployed, media worker, professional worker, religious person,
homosexual, lesbian, transsexual, artist, intellectual, militant, activist,
sailor, soldier, sportsman, legislator, bureaucrat, man, woman, child,
young person, old one.
Brother, sister of the National Indigenous Congress, now rainbow of the
best of the Indian peoples of Mexico:
We should not have been here.
(After hearing this, I'm sure that the one at my back is applauding like
crazy for the first time. So I'm going to repeat it…)
We should not have been here.
The ones who should have been here are the zapatista indigenous
communities, their 7 years of struggle and resistance, their ear and their
The zapatista people. The men, children, women and old ones, support bases
of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation, who are the feet that walk
us, the voice that speaks us, the looking which makes us visible, the ear
which makes us heard.
The ones who should have been here are the insurgent women and men, their
persistent shadow, their silent strength, their memory risen.
The insurgent women and men. The women and men who make up the regular
troops of the EZLN and who are guardian and heart of our peoples.
It is they who deserve to see you and to listen to you and to speak with
We should not have been here.
And, nonetheless, we are.
And we are next to them, the men and women who people the Indian peoples of
all Mexico.
The Indian peoples, our most first, the very first inhabitants, the first
talkers, the first listeners.
Those who, being first, are the last to appear and to perish...
Indigenous brother, sister.
We come from very far away.
We walk time.
We walk the land.
We are the bow and the arrow.
Wind walked.
We are the blood and the heart.
The guerrero and the guardian.
The embrace of the compañero.
They assume us to be defeated.
We have much time in our hands.
We came here to give ourselves name.
We came here to say "we are."
We came here to be gazed upon.
Here to see ourselves being looked upon.
Our name is spoken here for our journey.
This is what we are:
The one who flourishes amidst hills.
The one who sings.
The one who guards and nurtures the ancient word.
The one who speaks.
The one who is of maize.
The one who resides in the mountain.
The one who walks the land.
The one who shares the idea.
The true we.
The true man.
The ancestor.
The Señor of the net.
The one who respects history.
The one who is people of humble custom.
The one who speaks flowers.
The one who is rain.
The one who has knowledge to govern.
The hunter of arrows.
The one who is sand.
The one who is river.
The one who is desert.
The one who is the sea.
The different one.
The one who is person.
The swift walker.
The one who is good.
The one who is mountain.
The one who is painted in color.
The one who speaks right word.
The one who has three hearts.
The one who is father and older brother.
The one who walks the night.
The one who works.
The man who is man.
The one who walks from the clouds.
The one who has word.
The one who shares the blood and the idea.
The son of the sun.
The one who goes from one side to the other.
The one who walks the fog.
The one who is mysterious.
The one who works the word.
The one who governs in the mountain.
The one who is brother, sister.
Our name says all of this.
And it says more.
But it is hardly heard.
Another name covers our name.
We came here to be ourselves with those we are.
We are the mirror for seeing ourselves and for being ourselves.
We, those who are the color of the earth.
Here, no longer shame for the color of our skin.
Here, no longer embarrassment.
Here the pride of our being the color we are of the color of the earth.
Here the dignity which is seeing ourselves being seen being the color of
the earth which we are.
Here the voice which births us and inspires us.
Here, the silence no longer.
Here the shout.
Here, the place that was concealed.
Here the dark light, the time and the feeling.

Indigenous and Non-indigenous Brother, Sister:
We are mirror.
We are here in order to see each other and to show each other, so you may
look upon us, so you may look at yourself, so that the other looks in our
We are here and we are a mirror.
Not reality, but merely its reflection.
Not light, but merely a glimmer.
Not path, but merely a few steps.
Not guide, but merely one of the many routes which lead to tomorrow.

Brother, Sister Mexico City:
When we say "we are," we are also saying "we are not" and "we shall not
That is why it is good for those who, up above, are money and the ones who
peddle it, to take note of the word, to listen to it carefully, and to look
with care at what they do not want to see.
We are not those who aspire to make themselves power and then impose the
way and the word. We will not be.
We are not those who put a price on their own, or another's, dignity, and
convert the struggle into a market, where politics is the business of
sellers who are fighting, not about programs, but for clients. We will not
We are not those who are expecting pardon and handouts from the one who
feigns to help, when he is, in reality, buying, and who does not pardon,
but humiliates the one who, by merely existing, is a defiance and challenge
and claim and demand. We will not be.
We are not those who wait, naively, for justice to come from above, when it
only comes from below. The liberty which can only be achieved with
everyone. The democracy which is all the floors and is fought for all the
time. We will not be.
We are not the passing fashion which, made ballad, is filed in the calendar
of defeats which this country flaunts with such nostalgia. We will not be.
We are not the cunning calculation which falsifies the word and conceals a
new fakery within it. We are not the simulated peace longing for eternal
war. We are not those who say "three," and then "two" or "four" or "all"
or "nothing." We will not be.
We are, and we shall be, one more in the March.
Of Indigenous Dignity.
Of the Color of the Earth.
That which unveils and reveals the many Mexicos which are hidden and suffer
under Mexico.
We are not their spokesperson.
We are one voice among all those voices.
An echo which dignity repeats among all the voices.
We join with them, we are made multiple with them.
We will continue to be echo. We are, and we shall be, voice.
We are reflection and shout.
We shall always be.
We can be with or without face, armed with fire or without, but we are
zapatistas, we are and we shall always be.

Ninety years ago the powerful asked those from below which Zapata was
"With whose permission, Señores?"
And those from below responded, and we respond:
"With ours."
And with our permission, for exactly 90 years, we have been shouting, and
they call us "rebels."
And today we are repeating: we are rebels.
Rebels we shall be.
But we want to be so with everyone we are.
Without war as house and path.
Because so speaks the color of the earth: The struggle has many paths, and
it has but one destiny: to be color with all the colors which clothe the

Brother, Sister:
Up there they say that this is the end of a tremor. That everything will
pass except their being above us.
Up there they say that you are here to watch in morbid fascination, to
hear, without listening to anything. They say we are few, that we are
weak. That we are nothing more than a photograph, an anecdote, a
spectacle, a perishable product whose expiration date is close at hand.
Up there they say that you will leave us alone. That we shall return alone
and empty to the land in which we are.
Up there they say that forgetting is defeat, and they want to wait for you
to forget and to fail and to be defeated.
They know up there, but they do not want to say it: there will be no more
forgetting, and defeat shall not be the crown for the color of the earth.
But they do not want to say so, because saying it is recognizing it, and
recognizing it is seeing that everything has changed, and nothing will
change now without everyone changed, changing.
This movement, the one of the color of the earth, is yours, and because it
is yours, it is ours.
Now, and it is what they fear, there is no longer the "you" and the "we,"
because now we are all the color we are of the earth.
It is the hour for the fox and the one he serves to listen and to listen to
It is the hour for the fox and the one who commands him to see us.
Our word speaks one single thing.
Our looking looks at one single thing.
The constitutional recognition of indigenous rights and culture.
A dignified place for the color of the earth.
It is the hour in which this country ceases to be a disgrace, clothed only
in the color of money.
It is the hour of the Indian peoples, of the color of the earth, of all the
colors which we are below, and which colors we are in spite of the color of
We are rebels because the land is rebel if someone is selling and buying
it, as if the land did not exist, as if the color we are of the earth did
not exist.

Mexico City:
We are here. We are here as rebellious color of the earth which shouts:
We did not come to tell you what to do, or to guide you along any path. We
came in order to humbly, respectfully, ask you to help us. For you to not
allow another day to dawn without this flag having an honorable place for
us who are the color of the earth.
From the Zócalo in Mexico City.
Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee -
General Command of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.

Mexico, March of 2001.

The Seven Messages
Solve the Seven-Part Zapatista Riddle

EZLN Translated by irlandesa and by Narco News
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