Originally published by the Unión de la Juventud Revolucionaria de México, found here. Translated by Red Phoenix staff.
During the 1960s, the government at the time claimed that the country was moving relentlessly toward economic modernity. They called the crumbs that capitalism gave “the Mexican miracle,” but the miraculous economic growth was actually for those at the top, because capitalism does not erase exploitation even if it pays a little better.
The Mexican regime ignored the demands of the organized industries, which led to confrontations between the classes. The repression of the 1958 railroad strike, the 1959 teachers’ movement, the strike of the doctors in ’65, and the assassination of Guerrero Copreros (farmers in the Guerrero region) in 1967 are some examples of how the state treated the protest movements.
While the state imposed its law and looked with suspicion at the workers, in the university classrooms the diffusion of Marxism and critical thinking in general expanded, which helped to underline the true situation of the development of capitalism in Mexico. The influence of revolutionary ideology and the international context raised the consciousness of the students, and they began to carry out actions against injustice and the repression of industries and organizations in the struggle.
1968 as well as 2014 in Ayotzinapa, are characterized by having been one of the moments in which the Mexican state showed its most repressive face. The national security policy became an internal war against a public enemy; students and organized people, just as it is now with the supposed war against drug trafficking. The official speeches at the time leave a testimony that there was no hesitation on the part of the bourgeoisie in power when it came to using the army and weapons of war to repress and guarantee the holding of the Olympic Games, as well as the stability of the institutions.
The repression and murder meant that the movement had demonstrated the real possibility of building popular unity. The state would not allow it; no matter the political cost at the national and international level, no matter the loss of legitimacy, legitimacy that was replaced by bullets, tanks, fear, terror, espionage, military occupation, checkpoints and surveillance posts. Anything necessary to guarantee control of the entire population.
50 years later, a new stage emerges for the students and people of Mexico who, with their struggle and demands, are pushing the need for fundamental social changes; after the hooligan (porro) attack against UNAM students and the mobilization that has taken place in different universities in the country addressing aspects such as solidarity, lack of security, corruption, and the bankruptcy of public universities, three inter-university assemblies and inter-UNAM assemblies have taken place; the agreements of these spaces have allowed for the advancement of a UNAM petition and a national declaration that will be delivered with demonstrations.
Together with these documents, the call to build a national student organization has been made, and for this reason it is necessary that all conscious students give themselves to the task of strengthening the mobilization that will go from Felix Cuevas to the Rectory of the UNAM at 10 a.m. on October 4, and at the monument to the revolution on October 12 at 12 noon, for the delivery of the national statement, with the potential of replicating these actions in the different states.
Today the student movement has clear demands that for the next six years will be a guiding force in which the slogans are embodied, today this document transcends the short-term struggle, and its fulfillment will depend on the forms of struggle and the level of organization. Therefore it is necessary to maintain the assemblies as decision-making bodies that impose themselves on the bureaucracy, impunity, and corruption with which the authorities are managed. It is also necessary to promote a national brigade for the agitation of the national program and the elaboration of the program by institution, it is also necessary to converge with the teachers’ movement, normalists, and parents to generate a great national front in defense of public education, that breaks with the false compromising of the moment and that proposes the education that we want as a people.
1968, like all the student and popular movements, is our example—let us maintain unity, let us strengthen the interuniversity assembly! For a critical, scientific, democratic and popular education! 8% increase of the GDP in the budget for education! Against gender violence, for the defense and expansion of women’s rights! For peace and security with social justice! For unity and association with the struggles of the people!