Communication technology has arrived in the Lacandona jungle. The Internet café, Cyber-Pozol, is the only public Internet in the Patiwitz Canyon, or for that matter in all of the territories in resistance. In the café cooperative Smaliyel you can also find Zapatista music, videos, bandanas, handicrafts, sweets, gasoline, and food for sale.
It’s midsummer and the dawns and sunsets in Oventic are accompanied by a cold mist that shrouds the Caracol of Los Altos, home of the Tzotzil Zapatistas. This is a rebel region, a place of poverty and extreme marginalization, and also the Zapatista territory most visited by people from all over the world. In the first year of autonomous self-government, 4,458 visitors came here from across the globe.
The Caracol founded in La Realidad—the first autonomous center built by the Zapatistas—is still celebrating its first anniversary. The rains have flooded the land, mud has washed out the roads, the maize has been harvested, and the indigenous people have doubled their stores of maize seed. Maybe there isn’t less hunger than before, the situation is still difficult in these jungle lands, but a journey through the region today shows something that didn’t exist 10 years ago when we reporters first entered this territory.