The news about what’s happening in the North, in these cold lands that we call Canada, came like hot hurricane winds: the hunger strike of our sister Theresa Spence. For us, this strike represents the hunger for justice of thousands of indigenous men, women, children, youth and elders in many parts of the world, mainly in our America, territories with so-called indigenous and/or popular governments.
Since 2000, since Kollasuyo, since Cochabamba, we rise up against forgetting and for the recovery of our Voice and our Capacity to Decide our present and future and even after 12 years *, we rise and keep coming. Daily we overcome indifference, contempt, imposition, the arrogance and looting to which our governments eternally subject us; the governments’ partners, those grand trans nationals that are destroying our lands. They will never beat us and for that, from here, from the heart of this Earth, we say that your struggle, brothers of the North, is our struggle.
It is our struggle like all of the battles that our brothers of the South are fighting: brothers and sisters in Argentinean Patagonia, Mapuches in Chile, Quechuas of the Cajamarca in Peru, Quichuas from CONAIE in Ecuador, peasants in Paraguay, indigenous people from the lower lands of TIPNIS in Bolivia, brothers and sisters from Cauca in Colombia, in Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and the courageous and dignified Zapatista National Liberation Army with our Chiapanecan brothers and sisters in the Lancandona Jungle.
Your struggle, brothers and sisters from the North, is our struggle. You are not alone. They are not alone. We will never be. There is proof of this in the fifteen months of resistance to the imposition, authoritarianism and the claim to turn education into big business on behalf of the rich and powerful. The resistance of the students in Quebec was our resistance and nobody was able to prostitute education thanks to the organization, thanks to the unity and thanks to the action of that handful of people, thanks to the Canadian and Quebecois people.
In these lines, we present our commitment to you that your effort is our effort. Our commitment that your voices are ours; our commitment that your drums are ours; our commitment to your happiness. We reaffirm our wish to be an echo in the struggle you are waging; we want to work for the struggle to turn it into victory, into joy, into life.
Hasta la Victoria Siempre.
Indigenous summer in the South
Joyful, combative and hot winter in the North
* The author makes reference to the Water Wars in Cochambamba, Bolivia in 2000.