An international appeal for action
As you are already aware, massive electoral fraud has taken place in Mexico to prevent the PRD candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) from becoming president. The blatant fraud has already been well documented elsewhere (see for instance Narco News). It is clear that the Mexican ruling class, and that of the US, were very worried, not so much about Lopez Obrador himself, but rather about the mass movement of the workers and peasants that his victory could unleash. Already in the last few months we have seen increased militancy of the working class, including the struggle of the miners and steel workers to defend working conditions and trade union autonomy, and the bitter struggle of teachers in Oaxaca. This led to the calling of a national stoppage on June 28th, which then AMLO asked the trade unions to call off.
As soon as details of the fraud emerged the masses started to act everywhere. There were spontaneous assemblies, rallies, pickets of the polling stations and impromptu demonstrations (like the one in Puebla with 1500 people).
The ruling class put heavy pressure on AMLO to accept the results making hypocritical appeals to respect “democracy” and so on. The PAN candidate went as far as to propose a national unity government including Lopez Obrador. But the pressure of the masses was building up, and AMLO called for an “information assembly” on July 8th at the central Zocalo Square. More than half a million people turned up, some organised behind trade union banners. The extent of the debacle of the PRI, which dominated Mexican politics for more than 70 years, is reflected in them losing control over the trade union apparatus. Even the CROC, the trade union federation always tightly controlled by the PRI, was present with its own banners at the July 8th rally.
There Lopez Obrador made a concrete call for action, for the setting up of committees and for a national march, starting on Wednesday 12th from each of the country’s 300 electoral districts, towards the capital, ending in a mass rally on Sunday 16th in the Zocalo. The mood is set for massive action.
The comrades from the Marxist Tendency of Militante have intervened energetically in the election campaign and the early stages of the campaign against electoral fraud, with mass leafleting, assemblies in working class neighbourhoods and universities, the production of a number of special issues of the paper, etc. As soon as the elections were over and the first news of the fraud came in, Militante produced a new issue of their paper, which sold out its print run of 800 copies in three or four days. A special second edition of this paper of another 800 copies was sold out at the mass rally on Saturday, July 8th. At the end of the rally, the comrades appealed for people to join the committees against fraud and got more than 600 names and addresses of people interested. That same morning Militante speakers addressed a crowd of 800 people at the rally they had called outside the Federal Electoral Institute.
The mood is becoming more and more radical. It is impossible to know how this movement will develop and what it will achieve. But the Mexican comrades of the International Marxist Tendency have reacted extremely well. A new issue of the paper (of which they printed 2000 copies) was produced today and they are planning to issue another one for the rally on Sunday 16th (with a print run of 4000), together with 50,000 leaflets. The enormous interest in Marxist literature and in the Militante paper is just one small indication of the thirst for ideas amongst the Mexican workers and youth, tired, as one woman said in the Zocalo, of the fact “that the rich always get their way”.
|Militante special issue against fraud|
The comrades have now called for a public rally on Friday 14 in the Zocalo Square and an organising assembly on Saturday 15th to coordinate the different committees that are being created. The main ideas Militante is stressing are on the one hand the need to get organised to fight the fraud, and on the other hand that ultimately this can only be defeated by mass action in the streets (in the same way that the attempt to impeach AMLO was defeated last year), including the calling of a one day general strike by the trade unions.
We make an appeal to all left wing activists around the world to follow closely these important events in Mexico which we will be covering on a day to-day basis.
- Pickets are already being organised in a number of countries, outside the Mexican embassies and consulates for this Friday. We will be publishing details of these in the next few days, but if you can organise one in your city, please let us know.
- The events in Mexico are part of the general revolutionary wave which is sweeping Latin America. All labour movement and youth activists of the world must mobilise to make sure the necessary solidarity is organised.
- Militante website for daily updates (in Spanish)
- Mexico: Mobilise the masses and call a general strike to stop the electoral fraud (July 5, 2006)