Built-up grievances exploded in the plastic face of Enrique Peña Nieto as he strutted before TV cameras last December 1 (#1DMX). A mini-revolt in the streets of Mexico City let the world know that the presidency of this murderer and torturer, and the entire system that he represents, will be spurned by the people from Day One of his regime.
On inauguration day, the Movement against Imposition had called for encircling the federal House of Representatives at San Lázaro, where Peña Nieto would take office. And so, at 4:30 that morning, around 400 activists set out on a march from the #132 Revolution Camp for San Lázaro, where they were greeted by several thousand schoolteachers from Section 22, Oaxaca, and long lines of riot cops. As some demonstrators read poetry and shouted out their opposition, others used sticks and iron bars to knock down the fence that kept them away from the official ceremony.
After knocking down a few segments of the fence, the young people on the front lines were hit with volleys of tear gas and rubber bullets, many of which were shot to the head. They fought back with rocks, molotov cocktails and gas canisters hurled back to the police. All of a sudden, six or eight ingenious comrades rode up on a dump truck and crashed it into the fence, raising the spirits of the people and infuriating the police. The battle got more intense. About an hour later there were several people wounded and it was announced that one student had died. Angrier than ever, the activists decided to march back to the Zócalo, where Peña Nieto was scheduled to appear. [Now we know that no one died, but as a result of projectiles shot to the head, Uriel Sandoval lost an eye and Kuy Kendal is still in coma in the hospital.]
An ever-larger contingent of riot police followed the march. When the activists heading up the march got to the center of the city, police tried to arrest those in the rearguard. As clashes went on, demonstrators put up barricades to defend themselves and block the entrance of more police. Along Avenida Juárez a few bank and business windows were shattered as the running battle moved on to Alameda Park. The police began to make massive detentions, mainly of activists, but also of people who just happened to be in the streets that day.
The following videos capture part of what happened on #1DMX:
This post is also available in: Spanish