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Announcement :: Media
Help Narco News Cover the Next Stages of the EZLN
27 Dec 2005
Preparations for Narco News Full "Swarm" Coverage of the first legs of
the historic six-month voyage of Zapatista Subcomandante Marcos to
every corner of Mexico are gearing up. You can read all about it at
the special page we've created for it:
December 27, 2005
From Somewhere in the Lacandon Jungle, Chiapas, Mexico

Dear Friend,

Preparations for Narco News Full "Swarm" Coverage of the first legs of
the historic six-month voyage of Zapatista Subcomandante Marcos to
every corner of Mexico are gearing up. You can read all about it at
the special page we've created for it:

The journey begins on Sunday, January 1, and I'm going to share a
little bit more with you here about what to expect when the rebel
roller coaster ride begins.

Thanks to each of you who already made a donation in the past two
weeks we are halfway toward the estimated budget that will be needed
to move a mobile team of Authentic Journalists – video, radio, photo,
written word, investigation, the works – from Chiapas to the Yucatán
peninsula during the first 16 days of the journey.

The goal is not merely to cover Marcos – known as "Delegate Zero" –
and his travels, but also to undertake the more daunting task of
interviewing "the simple and humble people who struggle" that await
his visit across the Yucatán Peninsula in the ten days prior to his
January 9 arrival there.

I'll introduce you, in a moment, to your (every day growing larger
team of) journalists on the ground, and give you a preview of what we
hope to accomplish during these historic days, but first – because I
know that not all of you need "the pitch" to contribute some portion
of your holiday booty or hard-earned bread – here's the short version:

Please make a donation today to The Fund for Authentic Journalism to
make this news coverage possible (the journalists are all volunteering
our labor, but there are also gas, food, lodging, transport costs and
other expenses inherent in moving a large news team across hill and
dale). You can make that donation right now online at this link:

Or you can send your contribution – checks made out to The Fund for
Authentic Journalism, please - through the mail to:

The Fund for Authentic Journalism
P.O. Box 241
Natick, MA 01760
United States of America

Now, here's a sneak preview of what will occur beginning on Sunday.

The Zapatista spokesman will begin his journey in the jungle outpost
of La Garrucha and head toward San Cristóbal de Las Casas (the former
colonial capital of Chiapas) where a massive march will welcome and
accompany him.

On the ground there in Chiapas will be a team of journalists headed by
Concepción Villafuerte, editor of La Foja Coleta and former co-editor,
with her late husband Amado Avendaño Figueroa, of the historic
newspaper El Tiempo (which has a special edition – the first since don
Amado's April 2004 passing – coming out this week to begin the
reporting and also announce our own efforts). Working with doña
Conchita on the Chiapas coverage – you'll be reading it via Narco News
- will be the Italian journalist Giovanni Proiettis (who has reported
on the Zapatista struggle since the first days of the rebellion in
January 1994 for the Italian daily Il Manifiesto among other
publications), Gerardo Osuna, and our journalism brigade's general
coordinator Mercedes Osuna (who, for so many years when she was
director of Enlace Civil, guided the work of thousands of national and
international observers and journalists on Zapatista lands), plus
others whom you will meet through our pages in the coming days. (If
you are going to be in San Cristóbal this week, please stop by and see
Mercedes – telephone 967 678 36 98 or email oshalcon (at) to
learn more about our efforts and find a way to participate.)

Meanwhile, the mobile road team will descend upon Yucatán in advance
of the delegate's visit: Joining me there will be documentary director
Greg Berger (producer of the Gringoton and Atenco documentaries at ), cinematographer Sarahy Flores, documentary
producer Barrett Hawes (all three of them are co-producers of "Chew On
This: For Us Coca Is Life," the documentary produced in Bolivia during
the 2004 School of Authentic Journalism), plus ace radio reporters
Quetzal Belmont and Karla Aguilar (also 2004 graduates of the
j-school), journalist Ana Laura Hernández (some of you may remember
the international newspaper "Love and Rage" that she co-edited). A few
days later, Teo Ballvé (also a 2004 graduate) will arrive to lend his
hand on deck with the coverage. And of course our 2001 co-defendant
Mario Menéndez and his team at the region's largest daily newspaper,
Por Esto!, has offered us a helping hand across the peninsula to bring
you the news in your language. (Other old friends and colleagues are
trying to clear their calendars to join in this effort, too: stay

There, over the following ten days, we will go out and interview the
"simple and humble people who struggle" from Mérida to Chichen Itza to
Cancún to Chetumal and all places in between, and who await Delegate
Zero's arrival there on January 9.

And from January 9 to 15, we'll crisscross the peninsula a second time
to report on the news from that unprecedented visit.

During this time we'll be filing written reports, Internet radio
reports, "Newsreel" style short video reports, longer outtakes of
interviews, photographs, and whatever else is necessary to aid you in
being there from wherever you are on this earth.

Speaking of which: No matter where you are, you can participate in our
Full Coverage via The Narcosphere by monitoring the reports in other
media, bringing our (and all the readers') attention to other accurate
news coverage, correcting and criticizing the simulators and adding
your own observations and commentary (much as occurred last June
during the events that felled a president in Bolivia, or in August of
2004 when The Narcosphere caught and exposed false reports in other
media about the Venezuela referendum). And if you are skilled in
translation to or from Spanish, English, Portuguese, French, Italian
or German, we also need more hands on deck to assure that our
reporting reaches readers in each of those tongues.

For me, it is a pleasure to go back on the road again doing this
worthwhile work of Authentic Journalism with such talented and
dedicated colleagues, and the support of the international network
we've all constructed together. But this boat doesn't sail without the
wind you put behind it, and so I appeal to you once more to dig as
deeply as you can to keep our journalists healthy and mobile during
the news that is about to happen. And, again, I stress that this is an
independent effort in the "Other Journalism" and represents no other
organization than those of us Other Journalists going out to do this

Again, you can make your contribution via the Internet at this page:

Or you can send your contribution to:

The Fund for Authentic Journalism
P.O. Box 241
Natick, MA 01760
United States of America

Thanks again. Immediate history is upon us. Let's join forces like we
have before to break the information blockade and make sure that the
people know the true story.

Salud y abrazo,

Al Giordano
Coordinator, Road Team, The Amado Avendaño Figueroa Brigade

This work is in the public domain
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