luciernagas en el mozote

Last weekend, I took a weekend trip to the department of Morazán. Specifically, we went to El Mozóte for the thirtieth anniversary memorial…thing. I guess in a lot of places one would expect a lot of people being silent and, I don´t know, sad, but because this is latin america, there was a festival. Food, music, etc.

What´s to say? Here´s a picture of the church in the town, where they show you bloodstains, and wrote the names of all the children who got killed in it on the side of the building, under the mural detailing the event. There was one survivor, and the mural is based on her narrative:

They´ve exhumed around 1,200 bodies so far, but it´s been a difficult process. The government keeps putting a hold on the investigation. When it first happened, journalists didn´t cover it for a good while – one of the first US journalists to want to investigate it was personally stopped by the head of the US embassy. The story finally ended up in the news because someone snuck in from the Honduras side.

I feel…that there isn´t really anything “important” to say about massacres because it´s all redundant and obvious. Obviously you shouldn´t kill people. Obviously you shouldn´t support governments that kill people. What else is there? I think this is the attitude a lot of people take when they hear about things like this. “We know, we know, shit happens, life sucks, especially in countries we bomb…..Can we stop talking about it now? It´s depressing, and what´s the point?”

It´s a rhetorical question. Usually they are implying that there is no point.

But there is! It´s true that there´s not much left to say once you´ve gotten past “there was a brutal civil war, sparked by misery and popular repression, and your country helped fund it, and here, in THIS place, 1,200 people died unnecessarily.” But it´s still important to say it, because eventually (the idea is), people will actually get something from it. They´ll feel and they´ll learn and they´ll think. And when people feel, learn, and think…That´s when things like this stop happening.

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