[News] PR Independence: Propelling the Agenda Forward In Spite of US Repression

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Wed Jun 4 13:58:15 EDT 2008

Puerto Rican Independence : Propelling the Agenda 
Forward In Spite of Political Repression

A freedom movement under attack must take every 
opportunity to propel its agenda forward even in 
the face of constant surveillance, targeted intervention, and mortal danger

by Juan Antonio Ocasio Rivera

<mailto:joboriken at aol.com>joboriken at aol.com

June 2, 2008

This month, the United Nations’ Decolonization 
Committee will once again review the case of 
Puerto Rico .  Over the last year, the political 
dynamic in Puerto Rico has changed somewhat, 
necessarily bringing us towards a new and 
interesting analysis, one that may impact the decolonization work in the UN.

A year ago, the struggle for independence was 
strengthened not only by the continued 
intensification of grassroots organizing in 
communities across Puerto Rico, but also an 
escalation of the struggle on the international 
front as evidenced by the Latin American Congress 
in support of Puerto Rico’s independence and the 
Decolonization Committee’s request that our case 
be brought once again before the UN General 
Assembly, something not done since 1953.

Community struggles on the island have witnessed 
small victories and several incidents which 
served to educate and mobilize the 
people:  demonstrations rejecting the presence of 
federal agencies on the island, the police murder 
of an innocent citizen in Humacao and the 
widespread general outcry that followed, the 
recent victory of the community of Candelaria in 
Mayaguez to keep their mural criticizing police 
misconduct, the increasing activism of the now 
legendary Tito Kayak and the Amigos Del Mar in 
support of the demolition of Paseo Caribe, the 
Department of Justice Report regarding the FBI 
murder of Filiberto Ojeda Rios condemning the FBI 
agents involved as liars (and the agency as 
arrogant and non-cooperative) and subsequent news 
reports highlighting those lies and premeditated 
plans to kill the Machetero, the indictment and 
low-key arrest of the Governor (and his sudden 
anti-federal rhetoric) and the subsequent 
political response of the Partido Popular 
Democratico (Popular Democratic Party, which 
supports the current Commonwealth status) 
demanding sovereignty in Puerto Rico’s 
relationship with the United States, and the 
FBI’s arrest of Machetero Avelino Gonzalez 
Claudio (“FBI Arrests Man in 1983 Militant 
Robbery”, ABCNews.com, 
and its increasing harassment of independence 
activists across the island, including the Grand 
Jury subpoenas issued to activists based in New 
York City - and now also in Puerto Rico (“Puerto 
Rican Independentistas Protest Grand Jury”, 

Indeed, Los Macheteros recently released a 
statement alerting the people to a possible FBI 
plot to arrest, kidnap, and possibly murder 
activists during what many see as a coming wave 
of politically-motivated arrests (“Puerto Rican 
Macheteros Warn of FBI Onslaught”, Indymedia.Org, 

These campaigns and incidents may signal subtle 
movement in the collective unconscious of the 
people of the island, colonized by the United States since 1898.

As the people move toward a slow break with the 
colonial mentality which once forbade them from 
verbally and openly attacking the colonial power 
(aka federal government aka incumbent power 
structure), the response from the incumbent power 
structure (read: the colonial power of the United 
States and its representative agencies on the 
island) is expected: the use of 
force.  Nonetheless, it is clear that as the 
people express greater and greater outrage over 
their daily condition and collective experience, 
the politically repressive machine of the FBI increases its activity.

There are fires popping up for them daily – from 
Tito Kayak mounted on a crane demanding that 
Paseo Caribe be demolished, to the symbolic and 
psychological victories won by the people of 
Candelaria, to the demonstrations held in front 
of the not-so-secret offices of the FBI in Ponce, 
to the movement to preserve access to the public 
beaches across the island, to the police 
misconduct scandal that broke across the western 
part of the island that was actually revealed and 
criticized by progressive organizations 
supporting independence working in marginalized 
communities, to the grassroots warning concerning 
the resources in El Yunque and the need to 
protect that reserve; these must not be seen as 
isolated incidents of solitary struggles confined 
to particular regions or towns.

We must begin to view these struggles using a 
more long term and macro view of social and 
political change that is in formation and whose 
outcome is inevitable, given the power dynamic 
internally on the island and the power dynamic 
between the two nations of the US and Puerto 
Rico.  The friction between the powerless and the powerful is inevitable.

The outcome is an open challenge to the power 
status quo leading to the re-ordering of this 
power dynamic, establishing complete 
(international and national) political power in 
the hands of the people of Puerto Rico, with the 
people leading the way in establishing the forms 
and priorities of their government.  The shackles 
of international colonial subservience and 
internal national powerlessness must be broken 
and thrown off – this is what these incidents and 
campaigns are about and what they will provoke.

The FBI investigation into Puerto Rican 
revolutionary organizations is not about 
terrorism; it is about preventing this challenge 
to and break with the current colonial order.

The international struggle, long being waged in 
the halls of the United Nations and countless 
embassies around the world, has gained momentum 
and propelled the political status issue of the 
island into a position of sudden relevance.  Many 
more countries now than ever before accept and 
call for the self-determination and independence 
of the people of Puerto Rico – surely the work of 
movement leadership is bearing fruit on the 
international front as is the negative effect of 
the Bush administration’s policies and reputation.

Even the United States ’ Democratic Party 
Presidential primary election brought attention 
to the colonial condition of the island.  As some 
of its inhabitants manifest the neurosis and 
psychosis of colonialism by desperately 
campaigning for foreign Presidential candidates 
(whom they cannot vote for in the general 
election), those very candidates will keep Puerto 
Rican nationalists in prison, will oversee the 
intelligence agencies that will continue to 
harass and murder Puerto Rican activists, and 
will continue to conveniently lament the division 
in the island’s political climate while leading 
the psychological, economic, and social assault 
on our people that exacerbate that division. The 
incredibly low turnout for the primary (15% of 
the electorate) is evidence that Puerto Ricans 
still hold out for the preservation of their 
uniqueness, their identity, their separate 
nationality, and in essence their nationhood.

The synthesis of these two important facets of 
our freedom movement is the missing link.  At 
home, the movement must do more to inform and win 
over those who do not yet believe (at least 
emotionally) that independence is a viable 
option.  Abroad, the work continues to bear 
fruit.  The damage done by US scare tactics 
continues to manifest itself as many people on 
the island continue to erroneously believe that 
Puerto Rico will die of starvation without the 
current relationship with the United States.

The organizations challenging these deep-rooted 
brain-washed beliefs are undertaking a tremendous 
and inspiring role in combating those beliefs 
with their education campaigns across the 
island.  The movement must come together (not 
just the political party organization), 
offensively, and create a viable economic program 
– a general economic vision or a set of economic 
principles coupled with sets of alternative 
economic systems that may be implemented once 
independence is won.  Only then will the people 
understand what awaits them once independence is 
won from the colonial power.  The movement must 
regain and retain the nationalist argument now 
being stolen by the autonomists (who actually 
desire to remain under the tutelage of the US ) 
and couple that nationalism with a vision of 
economic security that can be explained to the 
people.  Once economic anxiety can be 
ameliorated, then nationalism and revolutionary 
nationalism (as the bridge towards political 
freedom) can be safely expressed by the people as a guarantor of their rights.

Such a program can be created utilizing the same 
unitary principle that is being used to defend 
the movement against FBI intrusion and 
harassment.  We must move from response to 
action, from defense to offense, from a position 
of irrelevance in the eyes of the people to a 
position of relevance and importance.  Our people 
must lose the fear of freedom and move to openly 
support and protect and develop our freedom.

This is not to say that the defense of the 
independence movement from federal attack should 
not be a priority, for such self-preservation is 
a necessary and important part of moving our 
platform forward to the next phase.  However, 
what should be recognized objectively are the 
subtle shifts in many different segments of 
Puerto Rican society that indicate a ripening of 
the political condition, layers of the colonial 
mentality that may be being shed that can and 
should be taken advantage of by the independence, 
nationalist, and revolutionary movements in 
Puerto Rico.  Seizing upon this window of 
opportunity now may be the best weapon of attack 
against the crime of colonialism and the federal 
agents of terror present on our land and shores.

Check out: <http://www.september23.org/>www.september23.org
English follows Spanish

Destacan fracaso de anexionistas en primaria demócrata en Puerto Rico

San Juan, 2 jun (PL) Los anexionistas boricuas 
obtuvieron un estrepitoso fracaso con la 
celebración de las primarias demócratas en Puerto 
Rico, afirmó el presidente del Movimiento 
Independentista Nacional Hostosiano (MINH), Héctor Pesquera.

el idioma en fracaso primarias demócratas en 
Puerto Rico 
o Hillary, perdura la incógnita 
EEUU: elecciones presidenciales 2008
El dirigente afirmó que la escasa participación 
la víspera en esa contienda es un mensaje contra 
el anexionismo, en el cual se encuentran 
involucrados el gubernamental Partido Popular 
Democrático (PPD) y el Partido Nuevo Progresista 
(PNP), principal de oposición.
Pesquera destacó la abstención del 85 por ciento 
del electorado habilitado, estimado en 2,4 millones de personas.

El PPD y el PNP se involucraron activamente en 
las elecciones internas demócratas a favor de 
Hillary Clinton, quien ganó holgadamente, o de 
Barack Obama, ambos aspirantes demócratas a la 
candidatura presidencial de Estados Unidos.

"Felicitamos al pueblo por haber optado 
masivamente por la abstención y haber enviado un 
mensaje contundente de que la inmensa mayoría de 
puertorriqueños no hemos caído en la trampa anexionista", aseguró Pesquera.

Subrayó que, en cambio, los boricuas aspiramos a 
un proceso serio de descolonización y al 
establecimiento de una relación de dignidad con Estados Unidos.

"El pueblo es el verdadero ganador de ese 
bochornoso espectáculo de colonizados bailando, 
con la infame encomienda de seleccionar el 
candidato a presidir la nación que nos ha 
sometido al colonialismo durante los pasados 110 
años”, destacó el líder del MINH.

Pesquera refirió que en 1980 participaron unos 
800 mil electores cuando se realizaron por 
primera vez en Puerto Rico internas de partidos estadounidenses.

"Si comparamos la participación en estas 
primarias, podremos aquilatar la magnitud de la 
victoria abstencionista y el claro mensaje de que 
a los puertorriqueños del siglo XXI no nos 
interesa inmiscuirnos en los asuntos internos de 
la política electoral estadounidense", dijo.

Pesquera felicitó a los más de dos millones de 
electores que se quedaron en sus casas y que 
exigen que no se malgasten fondos públicos "en 
asuntos ajenos a nuestro bienestar como pueblo".

jf/ndc/et PL-47

Copyright © 2006 - Todos los derechos reservados.
Prensa Latina



courtesy: "Walter Lippmann" walterlx at earthlink.net


GRANMA: Thousands of Puerto Ricans Demand Independence

Posted by: "Walter Lippmann" walterlx at earthlink.net   walterlx
Mon Jun 2, 2008 10:02 am (PDT)
June 2, 2008

Thousands of Puerto Ricans Demand Independence

Hillary Clinton wins Puerto Rico Democratic Party primary

SAN JUAN, June 1.— Thousands of Puerto Ricans flooded the streets of San
Juan to demand their right to independence, repudiating the US Democratic
Party primary elections held in this “freely associated state” won on Sunday
by Hillary Clinton. Her rival, Barack Obama, still remains posed to win the
party’s nomination for the November general elections.

Prensa Latina reported that the demonstration organized by the Puerto Rican
Independence Party (PIP) was the largest action against colonial domination
since the US invaded the country in 1898.

The march traveled the main streets of Old San Juan before culminating in
front of the La Fortaleza government headquarters, where PIP leader Edwin
Irizarry called for an end to “the sullying of our dignity with the shoddy

Irizarry alerted that Puerto Ricans on the island are determined to curb the
colonial farce promoted by both the governing Popular Democratic Party (PPD)
and the pro-statehood New Progressive Party (PNP), the leading opposition.

“We tell Ms. Clinton and Mr. Obama that the poverty here is due to the
exploitation of our country, where more than 50 percent of the population
lives in poverty” after more than a century of US occupation. “This is a
colony and where there is a colony there is no democracy. Until we obtain
our national independence there won’t be democracy in Puerto Rico,” said

The Puerto Rican primary allocates 55 delegates in the proportion of the
votes received. Some 2.4 million voters were registered to vote in this
primary. However, Puerto Ricans are prohibited from voting in the November
presidential elections.


Miles de puertorriqueñ os reclaman derecho a la independencia

Gana Hillary Clinton en primarias de Puerto Rico

SAN JUAN, 1 de junio.— Miles de puertorriqueñ os inundaron hoy las calles del
San Juan histórico para reclamar su derecho a la independencia, en repudio a
la celebración de elecciones internas del Partido Demócrata de Estados
Unidos, ganadas en ese "estado libre asociado" este domingo por la senadora
Hillary Clinton, aunque su rival, Barack Obama, todavía se mantiene al
frente en la carrera por la investidura del partido para las presidenciales
de noviembre.

Según PL, la multitudinaria manifestación, convocada por el Partido
Independentista Puertorriqueñ o (PIP), se convirtió en la más sólida
expresión de repudio al dominio colonial que el país norteño ejerce sobre
tierra boricua desde 1898, cuando la invadió.

La marcha recorrió las principales vías del Viejo San Juan hasta desembocar
frente a La Fortaleza, casa de Gobierno, donde el dirigente del PIP, Edwin
Irizarry, condenó que se pretenda "mancillar nuestra dignidad con unas
primarias de pacotilla".

Irizarry advirtió que aquí hay un pueblo decidido a contener el circo
colonialista que impulsan por igual el gubernamental Partido Popular
Democrático (PPD) y el anexionista Partido Nuevo Progresista (PNP),
principal de oposición.

"Les decimos a la señora Clinton y al señor Obama que esa pobreza responde a
la explotación de nuestro país, donde más del 50% de la población es pobre",
después de más de un siglo de ocupación estadounidense. "Esta es una colonia
y donde hay una colonia no hay democracia; hasta que no alcancemos nuestra
independencia nacional no habrá democracia en Puerto Rico", apuntó.

La primaria de Puerto Rico otorga 55 delegados en proporción a los votos
obtenidos. Unos 2,4 millones de electores estaban habilitados a votar en
esta primaria. Sin embargo, a causa del particular estatuto de la Isla sus
habitantes no pueden votar en los comicios de noviembre.

Freedom Archives
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San Francisco, CA 94110

415 863-9977

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