Mayor of LA was member of Hispanic neo Nazi student group tied to website that glorifies female suicide bombers
Hispanic Neo Nazi Voz Al Aztlan website
November 7, 2005
MIM: The domain registrant for the Voz de Aztlan website, and leader Hector Carreon, has taken up where the Palestine4ever website suicide bomber 'memorial website' (run by a spokeswoman for two Muslim children's 'charities'), left off by glorifying women suicide bombers with a photo gallery which emphasizes their maternal and humanitarian sides of the ' woman freedom fighters'.
"...La Voz has ties with MECha, the radical student group that supports open borders, amnesty for illegal aliens, and U.S. recognition of Spanish as an official national language. Like MECha, La Voz embraces the manifesto titled "El Plan de Aztlán," which is a blueprint for the establishment of a homeland for the "bronze race" in the former Spanish territories of the United States...."
MIM: According to William Mayer editor of Pipeline News:
"...Like the former Speaker of the Assembly, Antonio Villaraigosa, Cedillo and Bustamante were both members of college chapters of the semi-underground "Latino Power" group called MEChA - Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán.
If it were a white group, its members would be termed racial supremacists by the entrenched media.
And that characterization would be correct.
MEChA members [MEChastas] refer to California and the greater Southwest as Aztlán - a mythical Aztec empire - and their plans regarding it are grandiose. They argue that Aztlán was illegally taken from the Hispanic people - regardless of what the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo says – and that La Raza [literally The Race] must reclaim the territory, using force if necessary..." (see complete article below)
"...La Voz de Aztlán (The Voice of Aztlán) is the Internet publication, or webzine, of the Nation of Aztlán, a secessionist organization based in Whittier, California. The organization's chief objective, as reflected in La Voz de Aztlán (henceforth, La Voz), is the formation of a country named Aztlán, which would be composed of present-day Mexico, parts of Oklahoma, and the entirety of Texas, New Mexico, California, Arizona, Utah, and Nevada. According to La Voz and the group that established it, "Aztlán" was the name of the Aztec homeland that supposedly existed in Mexico and the Southwestern United States prior to the Spanish conquest of 1519. The group now seeks to recapture this territory that it claims was "stolen" by white America. But in point of fact, the American Southwest was not stolen from Mexico. Following the Mexican-American War, the Mexican government legally ceded this territory to the United States in 1848. Nor has a place called "Aztlán" ever existed; it was the invention of radical Latino activists in the early 1970s.
La Voz, which launched its operations on January 1, 2000, is managed and edited by Hector Carreon, an engineer by training and a former member of the radical Brown Berets. Carreon is also the founder and current leader of the Nation of Aztlán. Other La Voz staff writers include Miroslava Flores and Ernesto Cienfuegos. The publication has earned a reputation for its virulent hatred of whites, Jews, the United States, and Israel. Its articles commonly make reference to "La Raza" ("The Race"), a broad term signifying those whose ancestry is indigenous to the area of Mexico (or "Aztlán"), so as to distinguish them from the aforementioned targets of their antipathy - whites in general (and Jews in particular)..."
MIM:The website Palestine4ever which glorified suicide bombers was run by Rosemary Lewis, aka Shadya Hantouli, who was a spokesperson for the children's 'charity' Palestine Childrens Relief Fund - The PCRF headed by Steve Sosebee. Hantouli was also the 'medical supplies coordinator for the PCWF - The Palestine Children's Welfare Fund. Not surprisingly the picture next to suicide bomber Wafaa Idris notes that she was nurse who worked with the Red Crescent. http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,2763,640614,00.html
Palestinian Women Martyrs Against the Israeli Occupation
Wafa Idriss January 27, 2002
Wafa Idriss was a nurse with the Red Crescent, the Palestinian version of the Red Cross. On January 27, 2002, the 28 year-old nurse walked into a shopping district on Jerusalem's Jaffa Road and detonated a bomb killing herself, an Israeli and injuring 150 others. Red Crescent Society officials said that Idriss had been on the front line of clashes between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli troops, tending to the wounded. About two weeks before her suicide operation, they said, she cradled a 15-year-old boy, Samir Kosbeh, who was hit in the head by a bullet fired by the Israelis soldiers. The clash took place just outside the West Bank headquarters of the Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat. The boy lapsed into a coma for a week, then died, two days before Idriss detonated her bomb. Wafa Idriss lived at the Amari Refugee Camp near Ramallah.
Dareen Abu Aysheh February 27, 2002
The second suicide bombing operation by a Palestinian woman freedom fighter occurred on February 27, 2002. Dareen Abu Aysheh, 21-year-old, detonated a bomb at the Israeli Maccabim roadblock in West Ramallah (West Bank), wounding four Israelis. She was a student at Al-Najah University in Nablus, and came from the village of Beit Wazan, in the West Bank. She left a videotape, which was broadcast by the Arab satellite channel ANN, saying she "wanted to be the second woman – after Wafa Idriss – to carry out a martyr operation and take revenge for the blood of the martyrs and the desecration of the sanctity of Al-Aqsa mosque". Dareen highlighted the crucial role of Palestinian women in the resistance. "Let Sharon the coward know that every Palestinian woman will give birth to an army of martyrs, and her role will not only be confined to weeping over a son, brother or husband instead, she will become a martyr herself."
Ayat Akhras March 29, 2002
Ayat Akhras at 18 years old, has been the youngest Palestinian woman martyr. On March 29, 2002 she detonated a bomb inside a supermarket in the Kyriat Hayovel area of Jerusalem killing two Israelis and injuring 28 others. The day before she detonated the bomb at the supermarket, Ayat Akhras sat with her fiance and talked about graduating from high school and getting married in the summer. She was engaged to Shali Abu Laban, and came from the Dehaisha Refugee Camp, near Bethlehem.
Andaleeb Takafka April 12, 2002
On April 12, 2002, Andaleeb Takafka, a 20-year-old girl from Bethlehem, detonated a belt full of explosives at a Jerusalem bus stop, killing 6 Israelis, and injuring 104. In in an interview prior to her suicide mission, Andaleeb Takafka said "when you want to carry out such an attack, whether you are a man or a woman, you don't think about the explosive belt or about your body being ripped into pieces. We are suffering. We are dying while we are still alive." Andaleeb Takafka was from Bethlehem.
Hiba Daraghmeh May 19, 2003
Nineteen-year-old Hiba Daraghmeh detonated a belt filled with explosives that was strapped to her waist killing herself and three Israelis and injuring 93 others outside the Amakim Shopping Mall in Afula in northern Israel. The shy 19-year-old student of English literature never spoke to men and avoided drinking coffee or tea at the cafeteria of Al Quds Open University in her home town of Tubas in the West Bank. All of her friends were women. Even her cousin, Murad Daraghmeh, 20, also a student at Al Quds, said "I never saw her face. I never talked to her. I never shook hands with her." The first time the world saw her young face unveiled was in an Islamic Jihad poster released after her death.
Hanadi Tayseer Jaradat October 4, 2003
On October 4, 2003, Hanadi Tayseer Jaradat, a 29 year old attorney from Jenin detonated a bomb in a restaurant in Haifa, Israel killing herself, 19 Israelis and injuring 50 others. Hanadi Tayseer Jaradat wrapped her waist with explosives and fought her way past a security guard at a restaurant. Hanadi Tayseer Jaradat was a single woman whose younger brother Fadi, a 25-year-old, and older cousin, 34-year-old Salah had been killed by Israeli forces in the raid on Jenin in June of 2003. Her family said she did not tell anyone where she was going and they assumed she was on her way to the law office in Jenin where she worked.
Reem Salih al-Rayasha January 14, 2004
On the morning of January 14, 2004, a freedom fighter of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a 21 year old mother of two children, detonated a bomb at the Erez border check point between Israel and the Gaza Strip killing four Israeli soldiers. The female Palestinian martyr, Reem Salih al-Rayasha of Gaza City, was a university student with two children, ages 1 and 4 whom she loved dearly. She made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedom and independence of the Palestinian people.
Zeinab Abu Salem September 22, 2004
Zeinab Abu Salem is the eighth Palestinian woman martyr to carry out a suicide bombing mission in an effort to liberate Palestine. Abu Salem, age 18, blew herself up near a hitch-hiking post in Jerusalem killing two Israeli border police and wounding 17 others. The blast tore through the mainly Jewish district of French Hill in Arab East Jerusalem, captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war and annexed in a move not recognised internationally. Relatives of Zeinab Abu Salem had little time to absorb the shock. They rushed to empty the family home in the Palestinian refugee camp of Askar near the West Bank city of Nablus, expecting Israeli bulldozers to soon come to demolish it. "I don't know what's happening," said Abu Salem's 12-year-old brother Tarek, in disbelief that his sister had died. "I don't know where she is. She isn't at home." Family members said they had known nothing of Abu Salem's plans for the attack. Her father Ali, recovering from surgery to open clogged arteries, collapsed and was taken to hospital after learning of his daughter's death. Relatives said Abu Salem had just passed high school graduation exams and had spoken of entering university. Minutes later, Abu Salem's mother also passed out and was rushed to a local hospital. "Oppression is everywhere," said her uncle Mustafa Shinawi, 55. "Every Palestinian finds his own suitable way to protest the Israeli oppression."
* Internet publication of the Nation of Aztlán, a secessionist organization based in Whittier, California * Has ties with MECha, the radical student group that supports open borders, amnesty for illegal aliens, and U.S. recognition of Spanish as an official national language * Supports open borders * "It almost seems that police forces operate like military occupation forces in minority communities. Those who actually control the police appear to have hired 'occupation administrators' as the Nazis did with the 'Judenrat' in Germany." * "Even today, naive Latinas who join the U.S. Armed Forces are being brutalized and raped by racist Jews and white military personnel." * "God has cursed the Jews from time immemorial and they have been the curse of mankind since the beginning of written history."
La Voz de Aztlán (The Voice of Aztlán) is the Internet publication, or webzine, of the Nation of Aztlán, a secessionist organization based in Whittier, California. The organization's chief objective, as reflected in La Voz de Aztlán (henceforth, La Voz), is the formation of a country named Aztlán, which would be composed of present-day Mexico, parts of Oklahoma, and the entirety of Texas, New Mexico, California, Arizona, Utah, and Nevada. According to La Voz and the group that established it, "Aztlán" was the name of the Aztec homeland that supposedly existed in Mexico and the Southwestern United States prior to the Spanish conquest of 1519. The group now seeks to recapture this territory that it claims was "stolen" by white America. But in point of fact, the American Southwest was not stolen from Mexico. Following the Mexican-American War, the Mexican government legally ceded this territory to the United States in 1848. Nor has a place called "Aztlán" ever existed; it was the invention of radical Latino activists in the early 1970s.
La Voz, which launched its operations on January 1, 2000, is managed and edited by Hector Carreon, an engineer by training and a former member of the radical Brown Berets. Carreon is also the founder and current leader of the Nation of Aztlán. Other La Voz staff writers include Miroslava Flores and Ernesto Cienfuegos. The publication has earned a reputation for its virulent hatred of whites, Jews, the United States, and Israel. Its articles commonly make reference to "La Raza" ("The Race"), a broad term signifying those whose ancestry is indigenous to the area of Mexico (or "Aztlán"), so as to distinguish them from the aforementioned targets of their antipathy - whites in general (and Jews in particular).
La Voz has ties with MECha, the radical student group that supports open borders, amnesty for illegal aliens, and U.S. recognition of Spanish as an official national language. Like MECha, La Voz embraces the manifesto titled "El Plan de Aztlán," which is a blueprint for the establishment of a homeland for the "bronze race" in the former Spanish territories of the United States. To facilitate the realization of this goal, La Voz advocates a massive influx of "bronze race" members into the U.S. - not to assimilate into American society but rather to set up their own separate enclaves and incrementally drive Europeans out of the region. On its web site, La Voz once posted an excerpt from a February 7, 1997 speech by Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, who said that "the United States should return to Mexico huge chunks of that country's territories it acquired more than a century ago."
Denouncing what it calls "the hypocrisy of U.S. immigration policy," La Voz contends that the Statue of Liberty's famous inscription ("Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free . . .") is merely a hackneyed cliché "not meant for immigrants of color." In La Voz's estimation, the United States is a bigoted land that seeks to prevent, for racist reasons, Mexican immigrants from coming across its borders. Pronouncing judgment against "the white industrial and agricultural complex [that] is addicted to cheap immigrant labor," La Voz asserts that "[t]he economies of California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas would collapse if immigrants would stop working for one week." The publication further laments that certain U.S. government measures to stem the tide of illegal immigration have resulted in the deaths (by drowning, disease, and dehydration) of a number of illegal border-crossers. Moreover, it condemns groups like the Minuteman Project - a nonviolent, volunteer, grassroots effort initiated by private American citizens seeking to help the undermanned Border Patrol reduce illegal immigration into the United States - for allegedly "hunting" what La Voz calls "harmless Mexican migrants seeking work in the United States."
"Eventually," says La Voz, "La Raza will overcome all these injustices. At that time we may be able to built [sic] our own 'Monument to the Mexican Immigrant' as was done [with the Statue of Liberty] in New York Harbor for the Europeans. Perhaps a huge Aztec Pyramid with a statue on the top would be in order. The monument could be built in Los Angeles which has the greatest number of Mexicans next to Mexico City."
La Voz takes a particularly dim view of the U.S. criminal-justice system, which it casts as racist and discriminatory against minorities. "[L]aw enforcement," says La Voz, "is out of control throughout the country. . . . Police officers have become evil monsters of the worst kind . . . beating, torturing, robbing and killing [American] citizens. . . . There is one commonality to the worst of these crimes. It appears that the most aggrieved victims of the police are people of color! . . . It almost seems that police forces operate like military occupation forces in minority communities. Those who actually control the police appear to have hired 'occupation administrators' as the Nazis did with the 'Judenrat' in Germany. They have hired and trained 'Kapos' to police minority communities and to keep these citizens in their place."
La Voz laments that "[t]he incarceration rate of La Raza in the southwest U.S., and specially [sic] the incarceration of Raza youths, is also having the effect of destroying the family structure of our communities. In many cases, children are being left fatherless in the critical stage of their development." But La Voz makes no mention of the fact that the governors of Arizona and New Mexico - two of the states most heavily affected by illegal immigration - recently declared a state of emergency because of the high crime levels that illegals have brought to those states; that in Los Angeles, 95 percent of all outstanding warrants for homicide target illegal aliens, as do up to two-thirds of all fugitive felony warrants; that at least 60 percent of the members of southern California's brutal 20,000-member 18th Street Gang are illegal; that the leadership of the Columbia Lil' Cycos gang, which uses murder and racketeering to control the Los Angeles drug market, was approximately 60 percent illegal in 2002; and that a September 2005 Center for Immigration Studies report found that "[o]f the 94 foreign-born terrorists who operated in the United States [between the early 1990s and 2004], . . . about two-thirds (59) committed immigration fraud prior to or in conjunction with taking part in terrorist activity." None of this matters at all to La Voz, which holds that Latinos are targeted by a racist justice system and herded without cause into U.S. prisons.
La Voz sees American racism wherever it looks. It condemns, for instance, "the wretched and unequal treatment that historically has been meted out against the Mexican-American soldier, marine, airman and sailor. The discrimination against Mexican-Americans in the U.S. Armed Forces is in many ways worst [sic] than that experienced in civilian life." Expanding upon this theme, La Voz charges that "the USA military has pillaged and raped the American Indians and the Mexicans in the [S]outhwest in the same way they are now doing to the Iraqis. Even today, naive Latinas who join the U.S. Armed Forces are being brutalized and raped by racist Jews and white military personnel. . . . Another 'dirty secret' of the Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz run Pentagon is the shameful 'raping' of women of color in the U.S. military that has reached 'epidemic proportions.' There are hundreds of Mexican-American and other enlisted women in the U.S. military whose lives have been totally shattered by a military they thought would never betray them. Their lives are now in total shambles after the Pentagon threw them out and blame [sic] them for the brutal rapes that took place while they were in uniform."
In La Voz's view, not even natural disasters are immune to the influence of American racism. When Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in September 2005, for instance, La Voz ran a series of articles supporting Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan's assertion that the catastrophic flooding of certain black neighborhoods was caused, in large measure, by a white plot to eliminate black people. "Minister Louis Farrakhan says New Orleans levees may have been breached on purpose," read the title of one article. Said the piece, "The spiritual leader of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan, has come forward to say that the levees in New Orleans may have been 'blown up' to save White areas at the expense of Black neighborhoods. During a tour of Charlotte, North Carolina . . . , Minister Farrakhan said, 'I heard from a very reliable source who saw a 25 foot deep crater under the levee breach. It may have been blown up to destroy the black part of town and keep the white part dry.'" Asserting that "[t]he Black population in America is still not free regardless of the pretensions of Washington D. C. and media propaganda," La Voz made its position clear: "We believe Minister Louis Farrakhan when he says that the New Orleans levees were breached on purpose."
In addition to its anti-American hatred, another hallmark of La Voz is crude, unvarnished anti-Semitism, routinely drawing negative inferences about Jews and Israel. For instance, a December 29, 2003 opinion piece noted the "synchronicity" surrounding the Feb 1, 2003 explosion of the Space Shuttle Columbia, where "7 astronauts, one a Zionist Israeli, came raining down over the town of Palestine in Texas, the home state of President George Bush." "Was the Columbia Space Shuttle disaster . . . the 'mother of all omens'?" asked La Voz rhetorically. "Was it a powerful synchronicity pointing to a major future catastrophe about to fall on the USA, Israel or possibly the entire globe? . . . For the first time there was an Israeli military person on board a USA space shuttle mission conducting military-related research and experiments. That person was the Zionist Israeli Air Force Colonel Ilan Ramon. . . . As the Columbia entered the earth's atmosphere it began to disintegrate and by a great coincidence the bulk of the debris, including body parts belonging to the Israeli colonel as well as biologically contaminated junk, fell on the town of Palestine, Texas. . . . What did this synchronicity or omen portent [sic]? Did it signify that the USA's continued connection with and military aid to the Zionist State of Israel will ultimately bring destruction of the nation as the Columbia was destroyed? . . . . God has cursed the Jews from time immemorial and they have been the curse of mankind since the beginning of written history."
Given its contempt for Israel, it is not surprising that La Voz sides decisively with Palestinian militants regarding the conflict in the Middle East. Expressing a sense of kinship with the Palestinians, La Voz says, "There are great similarities between the political and economic condition of the Palestinians in occupied Palestine and that of La Raza in the southwest United States. . . . The primary one of course is the fact that both La Raza and the Palestinians have been displaced by invaders that have utilized military means to conquer and occupy our territories. . . . Another of the most glaring similarities is the incarceration policies of youths by the dominant culture. Presently, the survival of the Palestinian people is being threaten [sic] by the selective incarceration of the bravest, strongest and most productive members of the group. Like in the southwest . . . , the number of 'incarceration centers' built by the Israeli government in occupied territories to imprison targeted youths is growing at an alarming rate."
The La Voz website features a lengthy tribute to eight female Palestinian suicide bombers who killed many innocent Jewish civilians. Here are the honorific words with which La Voz describes what one of these women, Reem Salih al-Rayasha, did with the final moments of her life: "On the morning of January 14, 2004, a freedom fighter of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a 21 year old mother of two children, detonated a bomb at the Erez border check point between Israel and the Gaza Strip, killing four Israeli soldiers. The female Palestinian martyr, Reem Salih al-Rayasha of Gaza City, was a university student with two children, ages 1 and 4 whom she loved dearly. She made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedom and independence of the Palestinian people." Just as La Voz supports suicide bombings, it beatifies the father of Palestinian terrorism, the late Yasser Arafat, characterizing him as an "extraordinary courageous leader."
Notwithstanding the many suicide bombings for which such organizations as Hamas, Hezbollah, and Islamic Jihad have proudly taken credit, La Voz has accused Israeli agents themselves of detonating some of the bombs that kill Israeli civilians - and then blaming Palestinians for those deadly deeds. Says a July 2004 La Voz piece, "Killing and terrorizing its own citizens to justify government policies in the eyes of its own people and in the eyes of international public opinion is a very common practice by Likud Party operatives, the MOSSAD and the Israeli security service called the Shin Bet. This is not the first time that these government agents have carried out terrorist attacks against their own people which they than blame on the Palestinians. These vile and evil acts perpetuate the notion of 'Jews as victims' and justifies [sic] the continued slaughter and massacre of Palestinians by the Israeli army."
Expressing its solidarity with Palestinian militants, the La Voz website features a petition, addressed to President George W. Bush, demanding an end to U.S. aid for Israel. The petition reads, in part, "We, the undersigned, are appalled by the human rights abuses against Palestinians by the Israeli government, the continued military occupation and colonization of Palestinian territory by Israeli armed forces and settlers, the forcible eviction of the inhabitants from, and the demolition of, Palestinians homes, towns, and cities. . . . We find it reprehensible that U.S. tax dollars, in the form of U.S. military aid to Israel, are being used to fund Israel's oppressive policy towards the Palestinians. . . . We demand the immediate cessation of all U.S. military aid to Israel until Israel honors United Nations authority and abides by the rules of international law."
La Voz is wholly intolerant of Latinos who hold views that conflict with its own. It casts the vilest of aspersions upon those who do not walk in lockstep ideologically; those who do not share its anti-white, anti-American hatred; and those who do not consider themselves victims of an oppressive American culture. To La Voz, such Latinos are loathsome traitors to their "race." One such individual is Linda Chavez-Gersten, President George W. Bush's original nominee for Secretary of Labor and an outspoken opponent of racial and ethnic preferences for minorities. "It is no secret," wrote La Voz on January 3, 2001, "that La Raza despises Linda Chavez-Gersten! No woman, other than perhaps Gloria Matta Tuchman, generates so much disgust in our community than [sic] this extraordinary malinchista [traitor]. Like the brutish Jewish female Kapos at Auschwitz who received special favors for sleeping with their Nazi masters, Mrs. Chavez-Gersten will now be unleashed [as Labor Secretary] to squash any legitimate calls for better working conditions for our hard working Latino labor force." (Chavez-Gersten eventually withdrew her nomination.)
"As La Raza," continued La Voz, "we can expect nothing but betrayal from Linda Chavez-Gersten! Her entire history in public life has been one of treason against the ethnic group she professes to belong [sic]. She was chosen by powerful bigots to head a group called US English that pushed to dismantle Spanish/English bilingual programs in public education and to eliminate bilingual ballots and voting instructions. She was vehemently anti-affirmative action while a Ronald Reagan appointee to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission and has opposed civil rights for ethnic and racial minorities at every turn during her career. As Labor Secretary she will move steadfastly to relegate Latinos as working slaves for corporate America and the large agricultural and industrial conglomerates and at the same time she will work to maintain the economic privileges of whites."
To convey the idea that Chavez-Gersten was selfishly aligning herself with the (white) enemy of her people, La Voz likened her to black "'Uncle Toms' like Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas" and "'House Niggers' like UC Regent Ward Connerly" - a reference to a pair of prominent black conservatives who openly oppose racial preferences. "The appointment of token 'Uncle Toms' and 'Aunt Jemimas' like Colin Powell and Congoleeza [sic] Rice," said La Voz on another occasion, "is just a ruse to give the impression that there is real opportunity for Blacks." La Voz has referred to Chavez-Gersten as a "coconut" (brown on the outside, white on the inside) and disparaged her for having said: "George Washington is my hero. The fact that my father's family was off in New Mexico and their allegiance was, at that time, to Spain, not to England and they didn't fight in the Revolutionary War, should not in any way diminish the fact that George Washington is my forefather."
In the post-9/11 era, La Voz has been unyielding in its excoriation of U.S. policies and American society generally. For example, immediately after September 11 La Voz did not denounce the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon but rather condemned the "round'em up" and "string'em up" mentality with which Americans and their political leaders were allegedly reacting. Moreover, the publication blamed the United States itself for having provoked the attacks, in large measure through its close alliance with Israel. "Make no mistake about it," said La Voz, ". . . what you have witnessed on television and the Internet concerning the destruction of the World Trade Center and the Pentagon is actually a total failure of our U.S. foreign policy. . . . Why does the world hate us so? We must look into our own policies towards other cultures, religions, and national groups for an answer. . . . There is no doubt that our foreign policy in the Middle East has contributed to the attacks on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon. Is not our support of Zionism too high a price to pay? Why are we supporting an Israeli apartheid policy that has made all of Islam our mortal enemy?"
Repudiating in advance any government effort to derail future terrorist plots, La Voz wrote: "As minorities in the U.S. seeking an equitable voice, let us braise [sic] ourselves for a wave of repression against our civil rights unprecedented in contemporary history [sic]."
As a logical extension of its view that the United States is a land of iniquity, La Voz impugned Americans' allegedly "racist attitudes against the Arab peoples," depicting those attitudes as the manifestations "of national policy and of what we are learning through curriculums in schools systems throughout the country and through the mainstream media. The Arabs and Muslims have been demonized [through] years of mental programming through biased education and media propaganda." Claiming that American racism had not declined at all in recent decades, La Voz said, "This kind of [anti-Arab] mentality is the same as when us Mexicans are called 'spics,' 'beaners,' and 'wetbacks' and Black Americans are called 'niggers,' 'koons,' or 'mayates.' The kind of hateful racial frenzy being presently agitated against American Muslims and Arabs is no different than the one that was whipped up against Mexicans in 1930 Texas and against Blacks in the post-slavery South that culminated in lynches and in 'stringing them up.'"
La Voz laments the "demonization of Islam" by "perverse racists," "religious bigots with a well defined political and economic agenda," "Anglocentric xenophobes," "right wing Fundamentalist Christians," and "International Zionists" who, according to La Voz, "have launched a well funded global campaign to destroy the legacy of Islam and its contributions to world culture." "Leading the effort to demonize Islam are, of course, the International Zionists," adds La Voz. "Because of their immense influence and control of the mainstream media and the curricula of public and private education in the USA and other countries, these Zionists have had a major impact on the attitudes of non-Muslim youths towards Islam."
La Voz derides Americans' current angst over threats of additional Islamist terrorism, ascribing their concerns to the effectiveness of a deceitful government propaganda campaign aimed at stirring up widespread fear so as to gain popular support for American military incursions and empire-building ventures across the globe. In the final analysis, La Voz considers present fears of terrorism to be founded in an admixture of ignorance and bigotry - much as it views, in retrospect, Americans' fears of Communism during the Cold War era. Says La Voz:
"Many of you are too young to remember the incredible 'fear' that was part and parcel of American life in the middle 1950's, which generated a building frenzy of 'nuclear bomb shelters' under every home. The 'fear' was instigated by not only the military-industrial complex but also by a host of corporations and businesses that made fabulous fortunes capitalizing on the 'fear' of countless gullible Americans. Back then the 'boogie man' was [Soviet President] Nikita Khrushchev and Russian Communism, and today it's Osama bin Laden and Islamic Fundamentalism. It turned out that the U.S.S.R was only a 'paper tiger.' Today's new boogie man has so far only been a picture of a bearded Saudi . . . This new 'Terrorism War' smells a little too much like the old 'Cold War' and it looks like it is being pushed by the very same elements that have in the past benefited from the lucrative arms industry and by the politicians that they are able to purchase. . . . Everyone here benefits from the perpetuation of 'wars.' If there are none, they will create some. . . . This military-industrial complex works closely with the Zionist dominated media and specially [sic] with Israel and their Israeli Defense Forces. It is a historical fact that these elements often create a 'crisis' on purpose in order to justify not only their existence but also to scare the American public thus allowing them to create the 'environment' in which they can profit immensely and at the same time 'crush' any criticisms concerning their evil machinations."
In the Iraq War, La Voz unequivocally supports America's terrorist enemies. Consider its view of the infamous 2004 video showing the decapitation of American contractor Nicholas Berg by Iraqi terrorists. According to La Voz, the video was filmed not by the killers but by U.S. authorities, for propaganda purposes, at the Abu Ghraib prison: "The principal purpose of the fraudulent video was to defray world attention from the heinous sexual abuses and torture of Iraqi POWs and rape of Iraqi women detainees at the same prison where the Berg decapitation video was filmed. A secondary purpose was to 'frame' Al queda [sic] and especially one of their leaders by the name of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi."
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MIM: William Mayer editor of Pipeline News wrote this article about Mecha (the student group of Voz Aztlan), and how hispanic politicians are associated with the group. It is significant that the new Mayor of Los Angeles, Antonio Villaraigosa, was the director of the UCLA chapter of Mecha. He was also a board member of the ACLU.
Bustamante & Radical Hispanic Agenda Driving California Legislation
By William A. Mayer
PipeLineNews - While it is often claimed that hindsight is 20 -20, from the looks of what is going on in California's legislature, it's clear that the lessons of September 11 have largely been wasted, having had little effect on the majority party's acute myopia.
Despite the war on terror and a projected budget deficit possibly as high as $38 billion, Sacramento's increasingly radicalized Democrat dominated legislature is pressing forward – once again – this time with Senate Bill 60 (and it's companion, Assembly Bill 118) which will enable the state's estimated 2 million illegal aliens to obtain driver's licenses without presenting a valid Social Security number.
Enraging party activists statewide, Davis vetoed similar legislation [which he had earlier promised to sign] in October of 2002, just weeks before his narrow victory in the California governor's race.
If signed this time around, the most obvious budgetary impact of this legislation will be the loss of a huge amount of revenue (legislative analysis - "...loss of up to $600 million in Federal child support funds...") for the cash strapped state, but far more dangerous, it creates a seemingly open invitation - for those intent on forging phony identities - to do their document shopping in a terrorist-friendly environment.
Sifting trough the 9 -11 wreckage, one fact looms large – at least 8 of the 19 terrorists obtained their official identification via a loophole in the state of Virginia's Department of Motor Vehicles code that allowed applicants to receive a driver's license merely upon presentation of minimal paperwork none of which was tied to a unique identifier such as a Social Security number.
"After September 11, use of fake IDs is no longer just a teenage trick or merely about drunk drivers trying to hide their bad driving records. It is about our national security," Senator Richard Durbin. (D – IL)
The Virginia loophole was recently slammed shut by the Republican led legislature and reluctantly signed into law by Governor Mark Warner (D).
But in California clear thinking is not a pre-requisite for high political office, as a matter of fact it may actually be a hindrance to career advancement.
From outside the state, the move to revisit this subject is totally inexplicable - except when viewed in the light of rapidly changing demographics [California is now about one-third Hispanic - primarily Mexican] and an odious brand of racial politics practiced by former leftist campus radicals such as Senator Gilbert Cedillo (D. 22nd District - Los Angeles) who authored this bill and Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante, one of the bill's primary cheerleaders.
Bustamante incredibly and straightforwardly supports continued illegal immigration - "my district requires it."
Like the former Speaker of the Assembly, Antonio Villaraigosa, Cedillo and Bustamante were both members of college chapters of the semi-underground "Latino Power" group called MEChA - Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán.
If it were a white group, its members would be termed racial supremacists by the entrenched media.
And that characterization would be correct.
MEChA members [MEChastas] refer to California and the greater Southwest as Aztlán - a mythical Aztec empire - and their plans regarding it are grandiose. They argue that Aztlán was illegally taken from the Hispanic people - regardless of what the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo says – and that La Raza [literally The Race] must reclaim the territory, using force if necessary.
"In the spirit of a new people that is conscious not only of its proud historical heritage but also of the brutal "gringo" invasion of our territories, we, the Chicano inhabitants and civilizers of the northern land of Aztlán from whence came our forefathers, reclaiming the land of their birth…Aztlán belongs to those who plant the seeds, water the fields, and gather the crops and not to the foreign Europeans. We do not recognize capricious frontiers on the bronze continent… our brothers makes us a people whose time has come and who struggles against the foreigner "gabacho" who exploits our riches and destroys our culture. With our heart in our hands and our hands in the soil, we declare the independence of our mestizo nation. We are a bronze people with a bronze culture. Before the world, before all of North America, before all our brothers in the bronze continent, we are a nation, we are a union of free pueblos, we are Aztlán." El Plan de Espiritual de Aztlán, the charter document upon which MEChA is based.
Confusion among MEChA disciples seems to abound since technically - if their claims are true - "Aztlán" should be returned not to Mexico but to Spain, since California's original exploration and partial colonization was undertaken by them.
But attention to such nettlesome detail tends to dampen political ardor, the stoking of which is precisely what this movement is all about.
This primarily college based movement has another thing to contend with, given its obvious racialist leanings; it has to contend with some pretty bigoted adherents whose writings seem chillingly familiar to anyone who has studied post Weimar Republic German political movements.
Much of the literature surrounding MEChA is not only virulently anti-Anglo, ethnocentric and calculatedly antagonistic it is also anti-Semitic, which can be gleaned from constant references to "evil Zionists" which dot their literature.
From a Voz De Aztlán Editorial, a prominent mouthpiece for MEChA:
"The signs were first manifested during the state's 1998 election primary when a Mexicano defeated the Jewish candidate Richard Katz…when the wealthy Jew, Ron Unz, was successful in having an anti-bilingual education initiative approved by the state's electorate…La Raza's battle for the 20th Senate District is a perfect example of how the Jews will fight tooth and nail to maintain their dominance in state government…The Jews of California, about 3% of the state's population, have an overwhelming and disproportionate share of the state's wealth…there is no sector of California society, either private or public, in which Jews are not significant policy makers… purchase of influence as well as the cunning manipulation of ethnic and other minorities…Zionist Ron Unz is a wealthy Jew."
So we have California legislators, with documented extremist political roots, pimping for a 2 million strong alien invasion, which – if legitimized through some bone headed gesture of faux compassion by the Bush administration - will make the most extreme faction of the Democrat party the governing force in this state as far into the future as one dare look.
More importantly it will take the then Bronze State a substantial way down the road towards the MEChA Holy Grail of outright seizure of the Southwest.
SB 60 which was approved on a 24 – 14 vote [the California Senate is comprised of 25 Democrats and 15 Republicans] on June 4, and the companion legislation in the Assembly – AB 118 authored by Dario Fromer (D. Glendale-Burbank 43rd District) is up for consideration by the Assembly Judiciary Committee on June 10. If passed it will overturn the prudent 1993 legislation signed by Republican governor, Pete Wilson, which made the presentation of a valid Social Security number mandatory to receive a driver's license.
The supporters of this and similar legislation [such as recently enacted AB 540 which – un self-consciously - gives illegal aliens the right to attend the University of California at the same tuition fees that California citizens pay – an $11,000 discount from the out of state fee structure] is driven by the same immoderate forces who have created a mini-empire out of alleged concern for the ethnic poor:
Extreme Hispanic pressure groups - LULAC, MALDEF, La Raza, United Farm Workers Union & the Central American Resource Center.
Radical lefty political groups – ACLU, California Immigrant Welfare Collaboration & California Rural Legal Assistance.
Fat-cat run labor groups - Cal Labor Federation, Santa Clara Building & Trades Commission, the SEIU, United Food & the Commercial Workers Union.
Of course no radical social movement is complete in California without the official imprimatur of California Catholic Conference, as if they don't have enough on their own plate right now to contend with.
The foregoing suggests a much larger issue – whether the concept of cultural assimilation any longer has relevance - the radicals soundly reject it, gambling instead on rising numbers and Caucasian displacement to carry the day and the tale of rapidly changing demographics bear the strategy out.
According to the 2000 census, approximately 33% of California's 33+ million total population are Hispanic. Of that number, approximately 2 million are illegals, mainly from Mexico. Since 1990 the Hispanic portion of the population has grown from one-quarter to fully one-third of the total population.
40% of Californians do not speak English at home.
Over 15% of the State Prison and 25% of the Federal Prison populations are illegal aliens. Of these over 60% avoid statutorily mandated deportation when their terms have been served.
State provision of services have been crafted via legislation, the long arm of activist liberal jurists and pressure groups to be channeled directly to this illegal shadow constituency, which conservatively drains state coffers to the tune of at least $3 billion a year.
The situation is so dire that even traditional liberal apologists are starting to make sense. A case in point - commentators on California's transformational politics are ubiquitous, but few cut to the heart of the matter as did Los Angeles Times Associate Editor Frank Del Olmo.
"..back in the 1970s. That's when Southern California's population began the tectonic population shift we now take for granted. That's when older, mostly Anglo residents started moving out while younger, mostly Latino residents were moving in...the city has changed and is going to keep changing, no matter how much older residents may rail - or vote - against it...The old Los Angeles can only hope that when political change comes, it will come in the form of an inclusive and flexible candidate like Villaraigosa. The alternatives to him are a lot more nationalistic about their Latino identity and will be a whole lot tougher to deal with when the time comes....As it will." June 3, 2001
Reading between the lines, it seems that the best that the pessimistic Olmo hopes to salvage from this state of affairs is to somehow blunt a foreign based insurrection.
Editor's Note : The characterization of Villaraigosa as moderate and inclusive is preposterous on its face. Vallaraigosa was the director of the UCLA chapter of MEChA and a former board member of the ACLU of Southern California. His stint as Speaker of the California Assembly was divisive and his narrowly losing effort to become Los Angeles' first Hispanic mayor was fractious to say the least. Villaraigosa also distinguished himself by joining in the successful effort to convince Bill Clinton to pardon convicted cocaine kingpin Carlos Vignali, who served only 6 of 14 years due to this intercession.
The bitter reality is that the politicians who are fanning the Hispanic flame, in pursuit of increased dominion, have betrayed the welfare of the very people whose interests they supposedly steward.
Poorly educated - more often than not barely literate in their native tongue - relying mainly on a strong back and the sweat of their brows, the majority of illegals resemble used up husks as they approach middle age. In many ways the Cedillos, the Bustamantes and the white liberals are worse than the "coyotes" who pray on these wretched dreamers as they are smuggled across the border like loads of cordwood, because they know better and in the final analysis it is their legislation which guarantees the continuation of the cycle of poverty and despair.
"A Mexican male who may be 50 often looks 60 and walks as if he is 70…Quite simply, the last thing America wants is a Spanish-speaking man 50 years old with dependents but no skills and a bad back…he is bitter rather than upbeat; his romance with America is now more like a nightmare. He can become a baleful influence on his numerous kids, who hear of doubt and anger, not of retirement accounts and a vacation home in the mountains. If we wonder why the hardest-working alien in California sires sons who will not do the same kind of labor, who have tattoos, shaved heads, and prison records rather than diplomas, we need look no further than the bitterness of the exhausted, poor and discontented father." Victor Davis Hanson - The Universe of the Illegal - June, 2003
The here and now
And it is discontentment indeed that reigns supreme as SB 60 and AB 118 inevitably make their way towards the desk of Gray Davis, profoundly testing him in the middle of a grassroots recall drive that has already gathered about half of the required signatures to hold a special election, which will determine his political fate.
Will Davis hold firm and veto the legislation, stating - as he did only last October - that "the tragedy of Sept. 11 made it abundantly clear that the driver's license is more than just a license to drive; it is one of the primary documents we use to identify ourselves" or will he play to his base - hoping to defeat the recall attempt by going hard-left in the special election?
In the long run the question is moot, Cedillo and others have been pursuing this and related issues for 5 years now and are not about to take no for an answer. They clearly see events turning in their direction and know that this legislation is destined for eventual passage and signing into law, barring unforeseen complications.
That will only be the start, the floodgates will open.
The reality is that regardless of national trends, unless the GOP finds a spine, California will one day soon have a largely foreign born population and be governed as a one party gulag.
The state will, for a time, remain economically powerful but the social burden it will have to bear will preclude it from ever attaining the greatness it once promised. It will then by necessity sink into mediocrity - like a dwarf star – spent and out of fuel.
The sector of the population which drives job creation will initially retract and then retreat to saner climes, under the relentless pressure of increasing taxes and social legislation necessary to satisfy the demands of those who represent what Olmo referred to in his editorial as the "tectonic population shift."
Increases in income taxes, fees and special district assessments are already being enacted to partially close the budgetary shortfall generated by profligate governmental spending undertaken to appease key political constituencies. Soon enough, proposition 13 will be overturned; it's only a matter of time. That action will have the effect of a stake through the heart of the middle-class, especially older homeowners.
And standing between the status quo and this dire scenario?
15 Republican State Senators and a smaller handful in the Assembly, who are, to their credit, for the most part holding firm - but they can't do it forever, the forces arrayed against them are too great – so they are resigned to fighting a daily holding action until either the national party responds or they tire of the affair and capitulate.
Given the current state of the war on terror the national party could reasonably attempt to halt all immigration as a way of getting at the real problem, illegal immigration.
Enforcement of such a plan would absolutely require troops on the border alongside the beleaguered US Border Patrol and given the dicey state of race relations this option is probably beyond the will of the current administration, yet nothing less severe has any possibility of working because the influx of illegals across essentially open borders is unchecked at this point and will remain so unless something bold is done.
The solution is obvious, but alas...the flesh is weak.
Press Release -- For Immediate Release Contact: Zeke Hernandez, District Director 714-835-9585 / [email protected]
LULAC Orange County Defends California Lt. Governor Cruz Bustamante and MECHA Student Organizations
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) Orange County District #1 is appalled that conservative talk radio hosts and Tom McClintock have targeted California Lt. Governor Cruz Bustamante for his campus student activities while a student at California State University at Fresno in the 1970s.
Recent polls have shown that Lt. Governor Bustamante is the leader among the Big Five of the gubernatorial candidates which includes Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tom McClintock, Peter Ueberroth, and Arianna Huffington on Question #2 of the California Recall Election to be held October 7, 2003.
Conservative Senator Tom McClintock has called on Lt. Governor Bustamante to denounce the student organization MECHA because it advocates the creation of a separate homeland.
Zeke Hernandez, LULAC Orange County District #1 Director states, "I find it ironic that Senator McClintock is going this way and that way, trying to "two-step" his way to Sacramento. Step #1: He calls on Lt. Governor Bustamante to denounce MECHA because it supports the concept of a homeland for Native-Americans; Step #2: McClintock seeks the support of the California Nations Indian Gaming Association because they in fact have a homeland for Native Americans and status as sovereign nations."
LULAC stands in defense of the many Latino students who have studied in high school, achieved high academic standards and have received their educational degrees from the colleges and universities in California and in our country."
"These MECHA students today are at the helm of many corporations, own businesses themselves, and are also teaching at these same institutions of learning and other prestigious educational centers. They are among the policy makers, office holders, public employees, homeowners, parents, and the average working man and woman who is contributing every single day in today's society, " stressed Hernandez.
Hernandez continued, "LULAC is proud of the leadership skills that Cruz Bustamante learned as a young student and his tenacious personal efforts to obtain his college degree. He has excelled in his public life as a State Assemblymember, Assembly Speaker, and currently as Lt. Governor."
LULAC's 2003 National Woman of the Year and Placentia LULAC member Margie Aguirre states, "MECHA is on the same level of any student organization or club or fraternity or sorority as any other campus approved student group. Any discrimination towards students who are members or former members of this group should be deterred. If MECHA is singled out amongst the various groups based on its cultural or ideological foundation than all members of all student groups will equally suffer the same discrimination based on their own particular Greek symbolism or gender symbolism or African American or Asian or whatever historical reason why they exist."
Aguirre emphasized, "MECHA stands for equal access of all Latinos/Chicanos to a higher education and for better jobs. The fact that Cruz Bustamante is an outstanding leader in California attests to MECHA's positive support for positions of leadership for the underrepresented. Lt. Gov. Bustamante, should he be successful in his campaign would be on a list of the few who have been in such a noteworthy capacity to serve the people of the great state of California."
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the oldest (founded in 1929) and largest Latino civil rights organization in the United States. LULAC advances the economic condition, educational attainment, public policy influence, health, and civil rights of Latinos through community-based programs and projects with more than 700 LULAC local councils nationwide. LULAC Orange County District #1 includes councils in Santa Ana, Placentia, Stanton, Garden Grove, Orange County, Anaheim, and Westminster in California. ~~###~~~
Elected Officials Defend MECHA Fri, 05 Sep 2003 19:11:38 -0000
Politicians defend Chicano student group - Bustamante's link with MEChA is 'nothing to be ashamed of,' says one.
By CHELSEA J. CARTER - The Associated Press Friday, September 5, 2003 - Orange County Register
In 1975, a young Cruz Bustamante joined a student group at Fresno State College that advocated bold moves to empower Mexican-Americans.
Nearly 30 years later, with Bustamante a candidate for governor, he has come under fire from critics who say the organization agitated for a separate Chicano homeland in the United States.
State Sen. Tom McClintock, a conservative Republican rival, recently likened the Chicano Student Movement of Aztlan, also known as MEChA, to the Ku Klux Klan.
"It's like saying, 'Oh, I was a moderate member of the Klan,'" McClintock said last month. "It's incumbent on Cruz Bustamante to clearly and completely renounce the organization and its tactics and its views."
Bustamante, 50, has refused to back away from his past.
"The students who are MEChA today are just like the students when I was there," he said. "Pretty much, they are trying to get an education. Most of the friends I went to school with are now either graduates from college or raising families."
Unlike other radical groups of the 1960s, such as the Black Panthers and the American Indian Movement, MEChA was never associated with violence. It supported Cesar Chavez and the farmworkers' movement, and its founding members received support from then-presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy.
"Right before he was assassinated, he sat down with Chicano students who walked out of classes," said Susan Green, a Mexican-American studies professor and MEChA faculty adviser at California State University, Chico.
But the group also had a revolutionary spirit, embodied in one of its 1960s slogans, "For the race, everything. For those outside the race, nothing."
Critics, including immigration officials, have pointed to language in MEChA documents that calls for the liberation of the Southwest. The plan - written at the National Chicano Youth Conference in 1969, a month before MEChA was created - calls for Mexican-Americans to reclaim or liberate Aztlan, the mythical lands of their birth.
MEChA members say it is an ideological rather than a literal statement.
"When we use the term 'liberation,' we are talking about the liberation of one's mind," said Edward Gomez, a former member who is now a faculty adviser for MEChA at San Bernardino Valley College.
Tom Rivera, an associate professor at California State University, San Bernardino and MEChA faculty adviser since 1970, said the language was a reflection of the times.
"I see this as lofty language. It was not meant to be taken literally," he said.
Today, MEChA has about 300 student clubs nationwide and is known more for trying to help poor Hispanics get a college education than for radical politics. Using the motto "Unity creates power," the group promotes tutoring, community outreach and political advocacy.
In recent days, many of California's leading Hispanic elected officials have acknowledged their membership in MEChA or voiced support for the group.
"Most of us attended a meeting or more. Nearly everybody was involved with it some way," said Los Angeles City Councilman Antonio Villa raigosa, a former state Assembly speaker who was a member of MEChA from 1972 to 1975 at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Calif., said she was never a member but supported the organization. "I can understand why nobody is stepping away," she said. "There's nothing to be ashamed of. To do that would be to deny MEChA is doing a good job." ~~~###~~~
Fear of a Brown Planet
- Cruz Bustamante, along with many other California Latino politicians, belonged to a Chicano student organization in college. And conservatives are livid.
by Gustavo Arellano - OC Weekly, Orange County, CA http://www.ocweekly.com/ink/04/01/cover-arellano.php September 5-11, 2003
In the Aug. 22 Orange County Register, longtime local Republican gadfly Art Pedroza Jr. used the better part of a 655-word guest editorial to argue from stereotypes that Cruz Bustamante would be very, very bad for Latino Californians.
Bustamante, remember, is our lieutenant governor, a Democrat and one of 135 gubernatorial candidates in the Oct. 7 recall election. He is also, if you believe Pedroza's take on Latinos, a dangerous man. Bustamante's proposal to raise taxes on cars valued at more than $20,000 "hurts Latino families, which tend to be large, as they need minivans and SUVs more than the rest of the California public," Pedroza wrote. Latinos "will be more enticed by the machismo and fame of Arnold Schwarzenegger" and turned off by the appearance of "the pudgy and unimpressive Bustamante" —a particularly ironic prediction, given Pedroza's roly-poly physique. Latinos will identify with Schwarzenegger because "he continues to have an accent as thick as his muscles"; meanwhile, Bustamante will lose respect among Latinos when it is revealed that he "actually had to take Spanish lessons in order for him to more fully pander to Latino voters."
Pedroza saved his most forceful swipe for the end: "Bustamante is known best for his indecision, his affiliation with labor unions and Indian gambling tribes, and his loyalty to MEChA, a college student organization that advocates the recovery of the U.S. Southwest by Chicanos."
"I was trying to dig Cruz a deep hole and throw him in it with that last comment," Pedroza told me with unmistakable satisfaction. "And I did."
As the recall nears, Republicans are whittling down their anti- Bustamante talking points: he's a Democrat, he's fat and mustachioed, and he was once a member of MEChA. Opposite Pedroza's attack, the Register's readers page that same day featured a letter by Westminster resident Marvin Tuomala. "I want the Register to investigate and report on the alleged connection of Lt. Gov. Bustamante to Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan, or MEChA," Tuomala wrote. "It is time to expose him for the imposter that he is."
Bustamante joined MEChA—a Chicano college student organization notable for ethnic pride and activism—while a student at Fresno State in the 1970s. Until now, such an association was an obsession only of fringe conservative groups. During the 1990s, they warned anyone who would listen that former MEChA members— some of them, like Bustamante, now elected officials—were "rabid reconquistas" working to return California to Mexican rule by any means necessary.
Now the major media want in on the game. It's not just Fox News asserting on Aug. 28 that "Bustamante's membership in MEChA is certainly more relevant than Arnold Schwarzenegger's father being a Nazi." It's also KTTV-TV 11 running an Aug. 27 newscast purportedly "exposing" Bustamante's membership in MEChA. Local conservative radio broadcasters John and Ken on KFI-AM and Larry Elder on KABC-AM no longer hold a monopoly on castigating Bustamante as a Mechista, as members of MEChA refer to themselves. Now there's KLSX-FM entertainment reporter Sam Rubin, whose Aug. 28 program featured callers demanding that Rubin speak out on Bustamante's connection with what one caller identified as "the brown Klan." While guest-hosting for a talk show on San Diego radio station KOGO-AM, Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom McClintock claimed Bustamante belonged to "a radical and racist organization," and that membership in MEChA is like saying "you're a member of the Klan." Register editorial writer Steven Greenhut weighed in with an Aug. 30 contribution for the libertarian website LewRockwell.com (www.lewrockwell.com) that "there is incredible hypocrisy in the way Bustamante gets a free pass on his past association with [MEChA}, and the way Republicans get treated for their past associations." In an Aug. 20 editorial, the respected financial paper Investor's Business Daily warned against Bustamante's candidacy because of "his links to the radical group MEChA, the Chicano Student Movement of Aztlan… Members of MEChA are committed, according to their group's constitution, to the `liberation' of Aztlan—whatever that means."
What is MEChA? And why are Republicans betting it's their H-bomb in the coming governor's race?
In 1969, the student and ethnic-pride movements of the 1960s had enraptured young Mexican Americans, who now proudly labeled themselves as Chicanos and left their hometowns in search of the activist life. Some traveled to California's Central Valley and joined the United Farm Workers to organize migrant laborers. Others protested against the Vietnam War because the draft disproportionately selected Chicanos. Regardless of specific cause, nearly everyone in the nascent movimiento agreed on the necessity of an overarching vision. In the spring of 1969, about 1,000 Chicanos from across the country attended the National Chicano Youth Liberation Conference in Denver for that purpose. A month later, a larger conference took place at UC Santa Barbara.
>From these conferences emerged two documents—El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán and El Plan de Santa Barbara. Together amounting to a sort of Port Huron Statement for the Chicano movement, el Plan Espiritual explicitly laid out a call for Chicano empowerment:
"In the spirit of a new people that is conscious not only of its proud historical heritage but also of the brutal `gringo' invasion of our territories, we [emphasis in the original], the Chicano inhabitants and civilizers of the northern land of Aztlán from whence came our forefathers, reclaiming the land of their birth and consecrating the determination of our people of the sun, declare [emphasis in the original] that the call of our blood is our power, our responsibility, and our inevitable destiny."
The Plan de Santa Barbara contained similar rhetoric, and both documents went on to delineate what conference attendees thought important to rally the marginalized Chicano masses toward a better life: control of political and economic institutions, a love of one's raza (literally "race," but here taken to mean cultural heritage), even the formation of a national political party "since the two-party system is the same animal with two heads that feed from the same trough."
The national party, La Raza Unida Party, fizzled out after a couple of victories in Texas during the early 1970s, but the other result of the Denver and Santa Barbara conferences was the formation of MEChA.
There had been other Chicano student organizations during the late 1960s—UMAS (United Mexican American Students) and MAYO (Mexican American Youth Organization) among them—but the explicitly activist message of the plans and the need for a common group led to the rise of MEChA. Almost all existing Chicano student associations eventually transformed into MEChA chapters, still running on hundreds of college and high school campuses across the United States. There's no overarching central body, however—no MEChA national headquarters, no budget, no supreme leader. The Plans called for each MEChA club to be an autonomous group that interacts with other factions only in monthly regional and yearly national conferences. It is, in essence, the very model of self-governing local control that Republicans dream about.
Since MEChA was set up as a student organization, its clubs tended to concentrate on recruiting Chicano students to higher education and asking for Chicano Studies programs at universities, rather than implementing the economic or political visions of the plans. This isn't surprising: the Plan de Santa Barbara made sure to state that education was the primary goal of all Chicanos:
"Chicanos recognize the central importance of institutions of higher learning to modern progress, in this case, to the development of our community. But we go further: we believe that higher education must contribute to the formation of a complete person who truly values life and freedom."
"MEChA walks in concert with the same goals of any other student academic organization—good citizenship, values, and promotion of scholarship," says Paul Apodaca, professor of sociology at Chapman University and advisor to the college's MEChA chapter since 1995. "Our goal is to strengthen colleges in their effectiveness to create global citizens by increasing the number of Chicanos on campus. We see students arrive at Chapman from high schools that never sent a student to college. We use the collective of MEChA to promote the students in their desire to better their lives and communities."
He uses me as an example. I had been apprehensive about joining MEChA when I attended Chapman University in the 1990s. I had heard about the obsession with protests, the vitriolic speeches bashing everyone who wasn't brown, the infamous MEChA clap that ends every meeting by having members clap in unison, progressively faster, until someone shouts out "ˇQué viva la raza!" (Long live the raza!)
But then I actually attended a meeting. I encountered some extremist rhetoric—but it was aimed at increasing Latino enrollment on our minority-deficient campus. It was about mentoring high school students and about creating a support network for those of us who were the first in our families to graduate from high school, let alone college. And it wasn't just Latinos involved in this radical clique. We had African Americans, Asians, gabachos, even a Kazakh student named Amir who proudly wore his MEChA shirt emblazoned with the MEChA logo, an eagle gripping a stick of dynamite. We cared about bettering the world, and MEChA allowed us to do something about it.
We protested Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas when he appeared on campus; we supported striking janitors and held events for all the major Mexican holidays. Mostly, we spent our free time recruiting high school students to Chapman and tutoring elementary kids.
Chapman administrators loved our dedication, holding us up as models of what others could aspire to. My fellow Mechistas went on to work for nonprofit organizations, scored consultant positions with the Democratic Party, became bankers, turned into psychologists, made it in Hollywood, interned at the Cato Institute, were hired by Chapman to recruit students—and this Mechista went on to graduate summa cum laude from UCLA. Not a single Mechista dropped out.
The academic portion of MEChA is always lost, however, in mainstream media depictions of the organization. To most non-Latinos at colleges and beyond, MEChA is that noisy Mexican club that protests every grievance imaginable and stages disruptive classroom walkouts, always waving the Mexican flag.
"UC Irvine wraps the MEChicans with love and affection to protect them from the rough and tumble world of racists and bigots," went a typical criticism of MEChA, this one in the June issue of the UC Irvine conservative newsletter The Irvine Review. "In honor of Cinco de Mayo, the Sigma Pi fraternity threw a `Drinko for Cinco' party and held a few events that made light of the Mexican culture. This was so offensive that MEChA complained and UC Irvine rushed to rescue the powerless MEChicans. Of course, it mattered little to MEChA that there were a bunch of raging drunk Chicanos walking around campus housing after their little fiestas, doing much more harm to the Mexican culture in general than a few white kids could ever do dressing up in sarapés [sic] and drinking crappy Corona beer with that stupid lime wedged on top."
Apodaca doesn't deny that MEChA agitates, but stresses that the confrontation of racism or exploitation is of secondary importance to educating students. "MEChA is not a political organization," he said. "We never endorse political candidates. But MEChA does take up causes that match its goals of empowering students and letting others know of injustices. The politics of the times creates MEChA's actions, not the other way around. . . . We don't promote an agenda—we promote the student. And MEChA has put more Chicanos through college than any other organization."
Even Art Pedroza Jr. gave MEChA a chance during his time at UCLA. "I tried attending a meeting once, but I immediately heard the whisperings that I didn't look very Latino," he told me. "I was put off immediately." He says "belonging to MEChA isn't particularly negative. What MEChA has done the most is support Chicanos as they go to college. To me, it's a fraternity more than anything else."
Nevertheless, think tanks like the California Coalition for Immigration Reform (CCIR, authors of Proposition 187), the Hoover Institute and the American Enterprise Institute have ranted against MEChA in policy papers for years, warning that its spread signifies nothing less than a conspiracy aimed at destroying the United States. Most of the attacks focus on the language of the plans and the name of MEChA itself.
The "A" in MEChA stands for "Aztlán," the mythical birthplace of the Aztecs that supposedly existed in the Southwestern United States. During the 1960s, Chicanos took up the Aztlán legend as a spiritual solidarity point. The writers of the Plan de Aztlán incorporated the origin myth into the document, albeit in a rather militaristic tone:
"We are free and sovereign to determine those tasks which are justly called for by our house, our land, the sweat of our brows, and by our hearts. Aztlán belongs to those who plant the seeds, water the fields, and gather the crops and not to the foreign Europeans. We do not recognize capricious frontiers on the bronze continent.
"Brotherhood unites us, and love for our brothers makes us a people whose time has come and who struggle against the foreigner `gabacho' who exploits our riches and destroys our culture. With our heart in our hands and our hands in the soil, we declare the independence of our mestizo nation. We are a bronze people with a bronze culture. Before the world, before all of North America, before all our brothers in the bronze continent, we are a nation, we are a union of free pueblos, we are Aztlán [emphasis in the original]."
"Substitute `Aryan' for `mestizo' and `white' for `bronze,'" wrote syndicated columnist Michelle Malkin on Aug. 20. "Not much difference between the nutty philosophy of Bustamante's MEChA and Papa Schwarzenegger's evil Nazi Party."
Almost all the attacks against Bustamante and other former MEChA members operate under the assumption that Mechistas faithfully follow such inflammatory guidelines. But Apodaca points out that such language was never meant to be taken literally.
"The language reflects the period in which MEChA was created," he said. "The repudiation of `gabacho' and `European' in the statements is a call for rejecting dominance and intolerance by mainstream society. These statements were never against whites or American society any more than anti-Nazi statements are anti-German. They're not talking about white people, they're talking about gringoism—the oppression of the era against Chicanos and Mexicans."
Even Pedroza agrees with Apodaca on this. "I knew this Cuban student at UCLA during the 1970s—rich, full-on Republican type," he said. "I remember vividly this guy trying to join a fraternity. They ended up leaving him passed out drunk in the middle of a road one night far away. They had no intentions of letting him into the frat. If you wanted to get into a club, for many Latinos, MEChA was it.
"The stuff talked about in the documents are legitimate grievances that are out there held by Chicanos," Pedroza continues. "They're family stories.
"But rhetoric about brown pride and love for Chicanismo drives people crazy," he adds. "If Bustamante and other politicians don't repudiate language like that, they'll hurt their reputations permanently."
When asked about his involvement with MEChA during the 1970s at Fresno State at an Aug. 28 press conference, Bustamante was unapologetic. "The students who are in MEChA today are just like the students when I was there: pretty much they are trying to get an education," Bustamante said. "The actuality of what takes place in these organizations is to provide student leadership."
But in a 1999 interview, Bustamante tried to distance himself from being seen as too revolutionary during his stay at Fresno State. "I wasn't the most radical Mechista," he told a Latino wire service. "At the same time, there were a lot of Vietnam veteranos attending school. They were like big brothers, and they taught me a lot."
"If he has any intentions of winning, he has to deal directly with MEChA and be upfront. He can't have it both ways," Pedroza said. "The great unknown in this election is the middle—and the middle doesn't like hearing things like that."
Pedroza is right, which is why the MEChA card easily jumped from the far-right fringe to the mainstream. Take the case of Los Angeles city council member Antonio Villaraigosa. Most pundits figured the former Assembly speaker was certain to become Los Angeles' first Latino mayor in over a century during the 2001 mayoral race. Villaraigosa had secured the backing of various unions, progressive activists, Westside millionaires and other community leaders, and was favored by a majority- Latino city aching for one of its own to assume the mayor's seat.
But to the surprise of many, Villaraigosa lost. A host of reasons factored in the result—a vicious campaign by Jim Hahn supporters associating Villaraigosa with a former crack dealer and the overwhelming African American support for Hahn were two crucial aspects. But perhaps just as critical was the media's focus on Villaraigosa's MEChA past. The media followed the lead of anti-immigrant activist Hal Netkin, who devoted an entire website (www.mayorno.com) to depicting Villaraigosa as anti-American and even conducted an automated voter campaign to thousands of Valley residents telling voters of Villaraigosa's MEChA past.
"Those guys did an all-out attack against me," said Villaraigosa, who headed the UCLA MEChA chapter during the 1970s. "They tried to take out a giant ad in the Los Angeles Times and Los Angeles Daily News painting me as a rabid Chicano activist, and then sued both papers when each refused to run it. They would show up at mayoral debates and say that I was the leader of the reconquista while passing out info about MEChA and Aztlán. It was ridiculous."
But it worked. The 2001 election results showed that Villaraigosa lost thanks to an unlikely coalition of conservative white San Fernando Valley voters and otherwise- liberal African Americans voters. The only other time such a coalition occurred was in 1994, when each constituency overwhelmingly voted for Prop. 187. Not coincidentally, this is also the last time MEChA received such prominent coverage in the press.
Villaraigosa isn't the only politician to suffer from the MEChA paintbrush. Former Santa Ana school board member Nativo Lopez was reviled by his opponents because of his close MEChA ties, and similar accusations now plague Arizona freshman congressman Raúl Grijalva. Now, it's Bustamante's turn.
"It's reprehensible what they're doing to Bustamante and other Latino candidates," Villaraigosa said. "I think these people that attempt to portray Latino candidates as out of the mainstream are doing so for the purpose of injecting race or ethnicity in a campaign where it's clearly not relevant."
Apodaca says accusing Latinos of subversive leanings because of their MEChA links is like Herbert Hoover's supporters speculating that 1928 Democratic presidential candidate Al Smith, a Catholic, would take orders from the pope.
"Smith's Catholicism really functioned as anti-immigrant rhetoric," he said. "Politics is all about the code talk. Anti-MEChA statements are simple code for anti-Mexican sentiments by resentful whites."
And resentment grows as Latinos, already the largest minority group in the United States, gain increasing political clout. Pedroza—the man who purposefully used the MEChA smear against Bustamante because he knew it would turn Register readers against the candidate—believes it's useless to think something so effective will ever go away.
"Until these [Latino politicians] disavow the more disturbing portions of MEChA, until they put the fire out, it's going to keep on smoldering," Pedroza said. "And a bit of gas will set it off." ~~~###~~~