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Zapatista Leader Emerges to Scorn Mexican Candidates

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-marcos7aug07,1,6071098.story?coll=la-headlines-world Rebel Leader Emerges to Scorn Mexican Candidates #
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 7, 2005
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      http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-marcos7aug07,1,6071098.story?coll=la-headlines-world

      Rebel Leader Emerges to Scorn Mexican Candidates

      # Marcos says he won't back any of the 'shameless
      scoundrels' running for president.

      From Reuters

      SAN RAFAEL, Mexico — Masked rebel leader Subcommander
      Marcos emerged from the jungle for the first time in
      four years Saturday to castigate Mexico's presidential
      candidates as "shameless scoundrels" and said he would
      back none in next year's election.

      The Zapatista rebel leader's appearance at a meeting
      of activists in southern Mexico's Chiapas state seemed
      to be aimed at reclaiming a political role for the
      rebels before the election next July.

      "They'll pay for everything they have done to us. They
      are a bunch of shameless scoundrels," Marcos said from
      behind the black ski mask he has worn in public since
      the Zapatistas first burst from the jungle in 1994.

      "The decomposition of the political class is so great
      that we can do nothing," said Marcos, smoking his
      trademark pipe.

      He reserved special ire for presidential front-runner
      Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, a member of the
      center-left Democratic Revolution Party, calling him a
      false leftist. "They say, 'Maybe Lopez Obrador doesn't
      steal.' But his team has shown its ability and
      appetite to do so," Marcos said.

      In a video widely broadcast last year, one of Lopez
      Obrador's closest advisors was secretly filmed
      accepting money and stuffing a briefcase full of cash.

      Marcos has said the rebels will embark on a
      cross-country tour aimed at uniting workers, students
      and activists around a leftist agenda.

      The Zapatistas shocked the world when they declared
      war on the Mexican government and attacked police and
      army positions on New Year's Day in 1994, demanding
      rights for indigenous tribes.

      About 150 people died as the rebels seized towns and
      clashed with security forces in the first few days,
      but there has been little fighting since then and the
      Zapatistas have turned increasingly to civic action.

      In 2001, they crisscrossed Mexico in a two-week tour
      to drum up support for an Indian rights bill. They
      were received like rock stars, were allowed to address
      Congress and drew about 100,000 supporters to Mexico
      City's main square.

      Marcos' identity has never been confirmed, but he is
      widely believed to be a non-Indian Mexican academic
      and political activist.
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