Daniel Pascual Hernandez, coordinator of the Peasant Unity Committee (CUC)

“From the genocide and ethnocide practiced against the indigenous Guatemalans, the term ‘Palestinization’ emerged, to designate the brutality used against the entire civilian population, the murder of children, elderly people or women in the harshest period of the 1980s,” said Daniel Pascual Hernandez, coordinator of the Peasant Unity Committee (CUC), in an interview.

According to the peasant leader, “in Guatemala, as in the Gaza Strip, where they exterminate people, poison the water, animals and plants, the Israeli military advisors defended a policy of scorched earth and extermination”. Thus, in a short period, he pointed out, “more than a million indigenous people were forced to flee to Mexico and another half million had to move to various departments [estados] so as not to be slaughtered.”

As in that period there was an identity number relating to the resident’s region of residence, warned Daniel Pascual, “people from the Quiche people were forced to deny their own origin to avoid being executed”. “The number 14, relating to the Department of Quiche, indicated your origin and as the troops linked you to the guerrillas, you were executed”, he explained.

Pascual recalled that at the time, military advisors repeated the thesis of water and fish over and over again: “they pointed out that the guerrillas got their supplies from villages and communities, which were the water. They said that if their livelihood was there, their end was there.” Thus, “to keep the country submissive to the empire’s policy, what needed to be done against anyone who rose up was to bomb, murder and disperse. In the same way, as they currently do in Palestine.”

After the nationalist government of Jacobo Árbenz was overthrown by the USA and its vassals, democratic spaces closed, but it was from 1960 onwards that the surrenderers decided to radicalize. “Between 1960 and 1996 there were 30 years of war against the civilian population, when we had 200,000 Guatemalans murdered and 45,000 disappeared,” he recalled.

During the dictatorship of General José Efraín Ríos Montt, in January 1983, the CUC leader emphasized, “the Chief of Staff of the Army, Héctor Mario López Fuentes, said: ‘Israel is our main weapons supplier and the friend Guatemala’s number one in the world’. Later, in 2018, clown president Jimmy Morales (2016-2020) and Alejandro Giammattei (2020-2024) – whom Netanyahu described as ‘a great friend of Israel’ – moved their embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.”

In the early 1980s, the peasant leader stressed, “the United States government was under international siege, facing strong pressure, and therefore handed Guatemala over to the Israeli administration.” “It was up to the Zionists to finance, arm and train the Guatemalan troops with hundreds of advisors within their ideological vision,” he highlighted. Also in terms of weapons, he explained, they began to use the Galil rifle and the Aravá plane, well-known Israeli weapons.

“Currently, with the progressive government of President Bernardo Arévalo without a majority in parliament”, assessed Daniel Pascual, it finds itself facing pressure from ultra-rightist and fascist sectors, which are able to guarantee the maintenance of legal structures and the application of rural evictions. “These are very direct confrontations with the CUC that are beyond the State’s jurisdiction because dark forces have control of structures such as the Supreme Court of Justice and the Public Ministry. These are forces that seek to manipulate and misinform the population about impunity, corruption and the murders of those who died and continue to die in the fight for land”, he pointed out.

“The murders of the Guatemalan lawyer and human rights defender, José Alberto Domingo Montejo, and Marcelo Yaxón Pablo, leader of the CUC, as well as the serious shooting in the jaw of his son Gustavo Yaxón are not the work of common criminals. It was an ambush resulting from the orchestrated action of a criminal organization. This attack has a high political level,” he clarified.

In a meeting with the president, Daniel Pascual highlighted “advances made towards building a political and agrarian agreement with peasant organizations that pay off a historical debt of more than 500 years and leave a legacy for future generations”.

But for an oligarchy that wants to keep Guatemala submissive to big transnational capital, the banner of agrarian reform is something that attacks, he protested, “because hunger is part of their plan”. “After all, if there is no food or education, ignorance is abundant so that the same old people continue to manipulate and subjugate us”, he concluded.

Source: vermelho.org.br

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