Narco News 2001
March 17th, 8:30 p.m.
Important Update: All
day Saturday the Mexican press has been buzzing with quotes from
officials of the National Institute of Immigration (INM), claiming
that 30 "Monos Blancos" from Italy have been cited
to appear before the authorities on Tuesday at 1 p.m. for alleged
aggressions toward the press corps during the Zapatista Comandantes'
visit to the Politech University in Mexico City on Friday.
Narco News has learned
of two very important facts missing from these stories:
1. The members of the "Monos Blancos" group
had already left Mexico City before Friday, and, according to
a reliable source, were more than 12 hours from the scene of
the events for which they were blamed. They are still, says the
source, in that far away place today.
2. The alleged altercation between a "reporter"
- not named by any of the press (not even, inexplicably, by La
Jornada) and a foreign observer, allegedly Italian, had it wrong
on both counts. The "Italian" was a U.S. Citizen. The
"reporter," unnamed, whether assigned by a news agency
or not, clearly acted as a provocateur. The "reporter"
went crying to other reporters that an "Italian" of
the Monos Blancos group called him a "fucking indio,"
and claimed racism against Indians by the "italian."
In fact, the gringo observer, after being physically attacked
by the "reporter" said "fucking shit." (This,
at least, La Jornada did report, but their protection of the
identity of the "reporter" is inexcusable - the journalists
club placed above principle!) Finally, Narco News questions that
any real "reporter" would whine about being called
any name! The reporter ought to have been in Italy or Chile this
week, or in Cancun last month, when police beat up reporters,
before declaring himself "victim" for some words that
he didn't understand, or intentionally distorted, anyway.
Narco News is investigating
the identity - and background - of said "reporter."
This "reporter's" claims - cheerleaded by other so-called
"journalists" - led to an overreaction by the immigration
authorities who claimed to be citing 30 Italians from the Monos
Blancos. It remains to be seen who they cited or will cite, and
whether any of them were even in Mexico City yesterday when this
Now, onto our original
Al Giordano, Publisher
March 16, 2001
In their Own Words
Friday Publisher's Note: During the indigenous Zapatista Caravan to Mexico
City, February 24 to March 11, an Italy-based solidarity group,
called "the White Overalls" for their chosen attire,
was asked by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation to provide
security for the 24 EZLN delegates.
It was not a job for timid people, and
the White Overalls - affectionately dubbed "Monos Blancos"
or "White Monkeys" by the Zapatistas - rose to the
Some fans of the Zapatistas were upset
that this group, primarily of Italians, kept them from asking
Marcos for an autograph or kept aggressive members of the press
from demanding an interview in the middle of the caravan.
At Narco News, we never had any problem
at all with the Monos Blancos. To the contrary, their presence
was vital. Being foreigners to Mexico, their belt of security
signified that any violent attempts to harm the Zapatistas would
have likely harmed these European citizens - thus deterring such
attacks due to the understanding that the international outrage
would be more intense. Of course, we didn't try to demand access
to the Zapatista comandantes in the middle of an already tumultuous
and fast-moving journey either.
Some folks didn't like being told they
couldn't just walk up to Subcomandante Marcos and the comandantes
during the caravan. Some Mexicans were upset that "foreigners"
kept them from the indigenous delegates. We remind that the Monos
Blancos were asked to do this job by the indigenous delegates.
Some folks, still, complained to the yellow press, and various
stories criticized the Monos Blancos for doing their job.
For the last three days of the Zapatista
Caravan, members of the Indigenous National Congress relieved
the Monos Blancos and handled the security exactly the same way.
The yellow press, of course, did not complain - instead it ignored
the indigenous security team.
On the Mexico City Zócalo, Marcos
said it all: Noting that the press didn't mention the indigenous
guards at the end of the caravan, the Subcomandante said, "That's
because they only notice you if you're white."
At Narco News, we salute the Monos Blancos
for a job well done.
In fact, when we go to trial in New York
City - where the same Mexican bankers who are opposing the San
Andrés Accords in the federal congress are suing to silence
Narco News - we invite the Monos Blancos to handle our security
as well - from the courthouse to Little Italy to Wall Street,
where the real dangerous whackos lurk.
Here is their statement, translated by
Narco News, delivered on the final day of the Caravan.
From somewhere in a country called América,
The Narco News Bulletin
"White Monkeys" Speak
Are All Indians of the World"
what happens in Chiapas, none of what happens in Mexico, is foreign
to us. In the country of solidarity, there are no foreigners.
We are millions of citizens of the world who are here without
La Jornada, March 10, 2001
are dressed in white because we are
like ghosts, small invisible women and men in the struggle against
the giants of money and exploitation.
We are dressed in white because white
is the result of all the colors and we feel ourselves to be of
all colors because all the colors, all the languages, and all
our cultures are those that enrich the planet.
We are here, alongside the indigenous
of this land, alongside Mexican and International Civil Society,
to defend the colors, the languages and the cultures of the world.
We are here to shout that we want a world
where many worlds fit and that in these worlds there ought to
be Democracy, Freedom and Justice.
We went to Genova to defend the dignity
of this planet against the aggression against the environment
and biodiversity; to Nice to defend the right of free circulation
and the dignity of those in Europe as in Latin América
who die crossing the borders. We went to Seattle, to Davos, to
Prague, to Cancún to defend the dignity of the men and
women of the entire world who confront the nefarious effects
of the globalization of money and markets.
We are here, today, in this plaza, to
defend indigenous dignity.
We have learned much, in these years,
from the EZLN. We have learned that there exists and Army that
was born to disappear, that arms can exist to be able to speak,
that a ski mask can serve not to hide oneself, but to be seen.
The white overalls in which we dress, the suit of the invisibles,
are our ski masks.
We come from far away but we are closer
than it seems.
If borders already don't exist for the
bankers, the multinational corporations, the oil companies, why
should they exist for those who fight against the exploitation
that they exercise? How can we defend ourselves from the neoliberal
globalization in any other way than fighting for the globalization
of rights and dignity? We are united with the brothers and sisters
of all the world who fight for Democracy, Freedom and Justice,
and in each part of the world there are outsiders and enemies
that land and violate it. They are the foreigners!
Mexico City, Planet Earth, March 11, 2001
are the Foreigners Here?