The phrases “You are not alone” and “Long live Galeano” have been circulating on social networks across the globe recently. They refer to the recently assassinated Zapatista teacher José Luis Solís López. Solis, known by the Zapatistas as Galeano, was murdered in paramilitary attack on May 2 in Chiapas, Mexico. He died from both gunshots and machete wounds.
Galeano’s death has sparked an outcry of solidarity in the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) who denounced the attack as part of a government-led counter-insurgency strategy aimed at dismantling their autonomous self-governed communities.
Since the Zapatistas rose up on January 1, 1994, to fight for their right to land, liberty, and inclusion, they have received strong support from national and international social movements. After successfully recuperating thousands of acres of land, the EZLN has, for the most part, now laid down its arms. It now focuses its energy on operating its autonomous government from five bases known as caracoles — organized divisions of the Zapatista community.