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UPDATE: Barlow in Mexico (day one)

Maude Barlow is in Mexico to participate in the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal on the impacts of dams, visit Real de Catorce where a Vancouver-based company seeks to mine, and speak at a public forum in Mexico City on the right to water. This is her first blog from this trip.

The next morning (Monday), attending a public gathering for the Permanent Peoples Tribunal in Temacapulin, Mexico. Photo by Claudia Campero.

Travel, travel and more travel. Up at 4 am, flight to Toronto, then Mexico City, then Guadalajara, now in a van with about twelve people – the tribunal judges and organisers, plus our Claudia Campero, on a two-hour drive to Temacapulin, a small town that is at the heart of the resistance to the Zapotillo Dam.

I read voraciously on the plane about all the dam struggles here in Mexico and, while they all have their unique character, they all have in common a fight against ruthless exploitation of their land and water, growing corporate control of their lives and resources, a national government that has bought totally into this neo-liberal future for the country, and local governments feeling helpless to protect their citizens. Reminds me of Canada and the tour I just had fighting the same agenda in Alberta and BC.

I am reminded that most governments and their corporate elite form a kind of global royalty who have more in common with one another than with their own people. All the more reason for us to build our peoples’ movements and take back power from below.

I look forward to plunking my tired body into a bed soonish but am glad to be here with these wonderful people.

For a blog on the Permanent Peoples Tribunal, see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=17674. For more on Real de Catorce and the struggle of the Wirikuta, go to http://canadians.org/blog/?p=13457. The poster for the public forum in Mexico City on November 8 is at http://canadians.org/blog/?p=17650.