Homage to the compañero DAVID RUIZ GARCÍA during the Exchange between Indigenous Peoples and Zapatista Peoples
Article and photos EZLN media collective
Words of the National Indigenous Congress compañero Armando García Salazar, of the hñahñu´ people of San Francisco Xochicuautla, in homage to the deceased compañero DAVID RUIZ GARCÍA during the Exchange between Indigenous Peoples and Zapatista Peoples, August 4, 2014.
TWO SHORT CHRONICLES OF THE HOMAGE.
I. Words of compañero Armando García Salazar on behalf of the family and compañeros of the deceased compañero David Ruiz García.
Good morning everyone.
Good morning brothers, sisters, grandparents, children, and all of the compas who represent this movement.
Two months ago a nephew, a son, came to these lands in support of our brother Galeano. Unfortunately he suffered an accident upon his return.
Out of eagerness to defend justice and indigenous rights, he had been part of this movement for eight years. He very much wanted to come meet the Zapatista brothers, and to be frank, shake the hand of Subcomandante Marcos. It was his greatest desire. And he fulfilled it. He came to La Realidad.
Unfortunately, destiny is like this. Today, despite this, we, his brothers and his relatives, are here again. We will not retreat; David would have wanted us to go forward.
Since he began to participate in the struggle, he would ask why there was so much for so few and so little for so many. I could never answer him because I haven’t yet understood this either. He believed however that one day this would change, and that is what we are doing now.
All of us present here come with an objective. All of us present here come with conviction, and we are doing what many people have done: raising our voices, not giving in, claiming what is ours, and running off those who have invaded us.
This was one of David’s objectives, and I come humbly here today to carry out the traditional custom of our community: to put a cross at the site of the accident.
Many thanks Zapatista brothers.
In his first visit to the beautiful state, David said, “I must go and contribute the voice of our tribe, our indigenous people, the otomí or hñahñu´.
Many thanks for listening to me, and for sharing this experience in this place. Thank you brothers.
II. TWO CHRONICLES
The initial ceremony of the exchange between the CNI and THE ZAPATISTAS was held and compañerocomandante Tacho read a speech. Afterwards, all of the compañeras and compañeros present on stage went to pay homage to the compañero David Ruiz García at the site of the accident.
We started out toward the site, walking in two columns, with one compañero showing us where exactly the accident that killed the compañero David had happened and where we would leave the cross. The compañerosub comandante insurgente Moisés and the compañero comandante Tacho began to clear the area, and another compañero dug a hole in which to place the cross. Meanwhile the compañeras and compañeros of the CNI began to burn something like incense; they had brought embers in a small cup and they began to pray and sing in their ways of paying homage to the compañero David, who was a fighter. They expressed their pain at his death, and to see the compañeras and compañeros is to continue the path of struggle. They sang a song titled “Heroes and Martyrs,” and then climbed a small path to place the cross there. It is a rocky area, but they planted the cross with boughs of flowers and a candle. They prayed and sang again, and chanted “vivas,” LONG LIVE DAVID, LONG LIVE GALEANO, and THE STRUGGLE CONTINUES, and applauded. One of compañero David’s compañeros in struggle said that compañero David would be present here and in all of the struggles of our country. They brought a muslin cloth which was received by compañerosub comandante insurgente Moisés who also spoke, affirming that the compañero David was with us, that he would stay with us here in rebellious territory, and that it was good that the compañero David had known where to give his life. Finally, one of the CNI members asked us to accompany him in singing the Zapatista anthem and then we returned.
Compañeras and compañeros here, August 4, 2014. Today was the inauguration for the National Indigenous Congress compañeros. First, comandante Tacho spoke. After he finished, compañero sub comandante insurgente Moisés spoke and said that we would go to the site of compañero David’s accident. Thecompañero David’s family brought an iron cross and boughs of flowers and bean and corn seeds to the site, and they placed the cross there. They sang some songs for the compañero. In truth, the family is very much in pain, but they are also very strong and they will follow the example of the compañero David who did not die just anywhere, but in Zapatista territory. After this was over, the family gave a handkerchief and an embroidered cloth to the compañero sub comandante insurgente Moisés. The compañero sub comandante insurgente Moisés then spoke, saying that the compañero David had known where to give his life, and that he would always be with us. We then returned to continue our work.