Thursday, October 3, 2013

Commemorating the 45th anniversary of the Tlatelolco massacre of Mexican students

Tens of thousands of people rallied in Mexico City to mark the 45th anniversary of the Tlatelolco massacre on October 2, 1968 when troops opened fire on student protestors & bystanders just days before the opening of the summer Olympics. With unspeakable temerity the government blamed the massacre on students, claiming they opened fire first. This was dutifully echoed in the media which denounced the “criminal provocation” of protestors. It was also echoed by most prominent Mexican intellectuals & politicians, with the exception of Octavio Paz & Carlos Fuentes. It’s now known a special military unit called the Brigada Olympica, armed & trained by the US Pentagon for Olympic security, opened fire on unarmed protestors.

The exact death toll remains unknown because the government will only officially acknowledge 25 deaths. But eyewitnesses describe seeing hundreds of bodies being trucked away from the scene. Human rights activists claim as many as 350 were killed; thousands were beaten, jailed, & many were disappeared. No one has ever been prosecuted or jailed for the massacre.

Avery Brundage, president of the International Olympics Committee, would not let a massacre stand in the way of the games. This is the same unsavory creep who wouldn’t let fascism interfere with the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. It was in these 1968 Mexican games that Black US athletes Tommie Smith & John Carlos, members of the Olympic Project for Human Rights, gave the Black power salute during the Star Spangled Banner--which has to be one of the most glorious political moments in sports history. Brundage immediately suspended Smith & Carlos & evicted them from the Olympic village. Their courage & defiance continue to inspire.

This is a photo from yesterday’s commemoration to demand justicia for those murdered, tortured, & disappeared. We are glad to see the paint bomb has come to Mexico but regret it represents the blood of hundreds of young victims. Our fullest solidarity with our brothers & sisters in their pursuit of justice.

(Photo by Bernardo Montoya/Reuters)

No comments:

Post a Comment