Rebel Yell

Zapatista struggle enlivens life in el Norte

In the same way, the referendum itself was expanded to include one of the most controversial issues on Mexico's political agenda. The original referendum asked four questions about the conflict in Chiapas. After vociferous intervention by the U.S. brigades, however, the Zapatista leadership agreed to add a fifth question to the consulta: "Are you in agreement that Mexican men and women residing abroad should have an active part in the building of a new Mexico and should have the right to vote in elections?"

Officials in Mexico City have dismissed efforts to grant expatriate voting rights, but as with the rest of the Zapatista consulta, a strong turnout may help force the issue. "We're still divided by this stupid fence," said Corona, pointing southward with his red banner. "But if the Mexican government doesn't respect the [peace accords] and the rights of the indigenous people, then they are going to be hearing from us."

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