11.03.2006

Friend's of Brad Will Create Memorial Site


Here's the website created in honor of Brad Will, the documentary filmaker who was recently shot and killed in Oaxaca.

For more about Brad's murder read this,"Mexican government-backed paramilitaries attacking the popular occupation of the city of Oaxaca killed human rights activist and Indymedia journalist Brad Will."

The Friend's of Brad Will site also list some facts about Oaxaca:

"Oaxaca is a major international tourist destination, with its vibrant folklore, architecture, and scenery. It is also the second poorest state in Mexico – 75% of its 3.4 million residents live in extreme poverty.

Poverty in Oaxaca is the direct result of neoliberal economic policies that Mexico’s government has followed over the past two decades. These have included slashing subsidies on necessities like gasoline, electricity, bus fares, tortillas, and milk. The government also closed iits CONASUPO stores, which bought corn at subsidized prices from farmers to help them stay on the land and sold tortillas, milk, and food to the urban poor. Meanwhile, the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement forced Mexico to open its agricultural market to heavily subsidized U.S. agribusiness. The result: Many thousands of rural Oaxacans, unable to make a living on the land, today support their families by working in the U.S. and sending remittances back home.

Oaxaca also has one of the most repressive and corrupt regimes in Mexico, dominated by the PRI, formerly the country’s ruling party. Although the PRI was ousted from the presidency siz years ago by Vicente Fox’s PAN, the PRI continued to control the state under Governor Ulises Ruiz. The Ruiz regime followed the same neoliberal economic policies that Fox espouses, practiced corruption, intimidation, and censorship, enforcing its will through gangs of thuggish paramilitaries.

In May, Oaxaca’s 70,000 teachers went on strike for higher salaries and to end censorhsip, arbitrary jailings, and other human rights violations. Over 120,000 Oaxaca residents joined them in the largest rally in the state’s history. Ruiz promised business owners he would put down the protest with a heavy hand. At four in the morning on June 14, he launched an attack on the people occupying the city square with helicopters, clouds of tear gas, and a charge to hundreds of police. Scores were beaten and one pregnant woman miscarried. But the teachers retook the square, and the following morning 300,000 people marched through Oaxaca demanding Ruiz’s resignation. A major popular uprising was in motion." [Friend's of Brad Will]






"According to Reporters Without Borders, three people have been identified as suspects for the murder of Brad Will: municipal policeman Juan Carlos Soriano, municipal personnel chief Manuel Aguilar, public security director Abel Santiago Zárate and a member of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), which controls the state government, and Pedro Caramona, a former paramilitary. No arrests have been made so far."

[Infoshop]

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