Date: Sat Mar 05 2005 - 11:12:15 EST
Dear all, This was a massacre. The police invaded the settlement (after politicians had promised to resolve the problem peacefully - but that was during the election campaign last year). The settlers had been there for many years. The owner did not pay the land taxes, again, for years. But for some reason the owner took the settlers to court and obtained an eviction order. The police crashed in. As far as I know, two people are officially dead, but scores are missing - perhaps up to 50. Bodies have apparently been turning up gradually inside wells, on roadsides and in woods far from the settlement. It's grotesque. Check the Brazilian Indymedia site, _http://www.midiaindependente.org/pt/blue/2005/03/309241.shtml_ (http://www.midiaindependente.org/pt/blue/2005/03/309241.shtml) The state of Goias (capital: Goiania, pop. approx. 1.2m) is a very right-wing state, dominated by a coalition of traditional landlords and agribusiness. Property rights are very important to them. They also think that a good beating from time to time can help to keep people in their proper places. This is not an exaggeration; I lived there for many years, and my parents still do. I think international outrage can make a big difference in this case. It could force the federal government to seek a solution - otherwise the state government will stall the official investigation and the killers will carry on as normal. Of course there is a pattern here - Carandiru, in Sao Paulo (111 dead); the Para' State massacre of landless peasants (16? dead), Goiania. Life is cheap in Brazil. alfredo.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Sun Mar 06 2005 - 00:00:01 EST