Stand Up Against the Violent Attack against the MST

By: Carlos Aznárez on November 4, 2106

Students at the MST Florestan Fernandes School, Photo: Bill Hackwell

Students at the MST Florestan Fernandes School, Photo: Bill Hackwell

Nothing happens by chance. Precisely when the leader of the Brazilian Landless Movement, (MST) Joao Pedro Stedile and other members of the mass organization are at the Vatican participating in the Meeting of Popular Movements with Pope Francis, the Brazilian police violently assaulted the National School Florestan Fernandes which the organization owns near Sao Paulo.

It was an unusual display of the uniform police, using their weapons and firing into the air, insulting the MST militants that were at the location; this all took place in the context of a clear show of force against one of the most important peasant organizations in the continent. The MST is the builder of Via Campesina and organization that is endowed with a worldwide prestige because of the work they have been doing in defense of rural workers and the poor people of Brazil.

Thus, the Temer dictatorship, the illegitimate government, wanted to “show the world” that in his country human rights are no longer enforced and, much less the teachings expressed throughout the past few months by Pope Francis himself. The government of the rich is trying to assert their views by gunpoint, counting not only on the “legal” police but also with paramilitaries in the service of large landowners, as happened in the recent assault on the camps of the MST in Maraba.

The same impudence that Temer used to remove Dilma Rousseff, he now believes he has a green light to act against anyone who fights against their traitorous neoliberal discourse. This is the new context where the MST and Brazil’s Popular Front are viewed as an enemy to eliminate.

The president, a loyal friend of the monopolies and the IMF, however is wrong. The Brazilian people have years of experience in defending what is theirs, and in that sense, the level of revolutionary consciousness of the members of the MST is not only high but they are an example for the whole continent. They have built an organization from below without making any concessions to the establishment, maintaining autonomy, generating the training of cadres, integrating both women, men and children in a world of solidarity. This runs concurrently to an onslaught of media lies that the people of Brazil are forced to consume while the current regime is implementing a lifestyle of repression. The model of the MST scares people like Temer who believe they have achieved a great feat by barging into a popular school where internationalism and popular education has developed into a model to be emulated by other fighters of the continent and the world.

After this brutal attack on the MST, it is time for those who have always received solidarity from the organization to respond in the same way, condemning once again the barbarity coming from Temer and the Brazilian pro-imperialist oligarchy.

By attacking the MST they are trying to weaken all regional struggles. This is why internationalist solidarity must show its strength against this outrage, loudly proclaiming that we all stand with the MST! Fora Temer!

Source: Resumen Latinoamericano