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The case of professor J: Thorn in their side

16. September 2002

By Professor J from the prison cell

This case is a hard nut to crack. A bitter swallow which will burn the stomachs not only of the Chilean militaries but also of many others.
Between 1986 and 1999 I had been strolling through the most diverse countries like Colombia, Panama, Ecuador, Peru, Argentine, Brazil, Spain, England, Germany and Paraguay. Furthermore I presented a testimony against capital punishment in Chile before the European Parliament in 1987. In 1988 with the support of the “Continental Caravan for Peace and Human Rights in Latin America” a campaign was led under my coordination which forced the military government to close down the borders and hinder two groups to enter the county, one from Tacna, Peru, and the other from Mendoza, Argentine. The Chilean media covered the events and my name became well known.
No legal steps against my person were taken at that period of time, not even an arrest warrant by Interpol was requested. Instead they tried to hijack me two times. Once in Colombia where they threatened my sister with death as she hosted me in 1987. One day I left the house while a group of men who jumped out of two cars attacked me. I had a narrow escape because the private guards of a house nearby lent me a helping hand. The second attempt occurred in Tacna in 1988 when a light truck suddenly stopped and caught me saying “follow us, son of a bitch”. But that happened close to the hotel which I could reach running. The representatives of the Peruvian organisation, who were waiting for me, called the police. They searched for the vehicle but without success.
That shows that the government was interested to capture me using methods typical for military rulers. It was more than vengeance – as we cannot speak of justice – when a military court issued an arrest warrant accusing me of the execution of General Urzua. Thus, they tried to display once again their omnipotence in the frame of the ongoing negotiations to install a civil government due to administer the dictatorial institutions.
From 1988 onwards the preparations for the farce of democracy in Chile started. The military was taking steps in order to perpetuate their control over the country. Those who were claiming that step by step things would ameliorate proved to be accomplices of the strategic operation of the military to cover its intentions. Many joined the big game, also many of those who had been fighting in the ranks of the resistance betraying those who have fought and given their lives for liberty and the rights of the people and mainly those who carried on and today form part of the growing continental and international wave of resistance under the guise of realism and pragmatism.
Disgusted by that transitional policy I decided to autonomize me in 1987 and in 1988 I presented my formal resignation the secretary general of the MIR, Andrà©s Pascal Allende. I criticised his dreadful conduction as he did not understand how to secure the support of the vivid and combative forces of resistance while he let rein intellectuals who were foreseeing a new epoch in which they planned to return to legality and organise diverse institutional projects.
By the end of the 90ies things started to change. Eventually their cosmetic operation did not help the military to solve the problems of the “Chilean miracle” but only transferred it into the hands of the civil administration. The resistance of the slums, of the indigenous communities of the Mapuches, of the youth and other sectors keeps growing.
In 1999 the Chilean consulate in Sao Paulo granted me a new passport without problems, without being threatened by an arrest warrant, without Interpol. My case seemed to be settled.
On the other hand my writings and activities in different countries became increasingly convincing and in line with the continental resistance. In Brazil autonomous groups in slums and cities in the hinterland have been organised culminating in the first Continental Convention of Human Rights and in the formation of CLAJADEP in 1987, a continental coordination contributing to the exchange of experiences and reflexions between diverse countries. This continental gathering convened by CLAJADEP, which had organised also the caravan in 1988, took place in 1999 in Brazil. It stimulated our work which was reflected by various discussion lists and on many web sites. When the indigenous communities of Ecuador stormed the governmental palace the comrades of CLAJADEP were in contact with them which enabled us to globally spread daily news building a direct link to the events. The same happened in other countries.
Eventually it was decided to hide my name and “Professor J” was proposed as the students of the Brazilian universities happened to call me. But that attempt did not help much. When I was invited to the Anti-imperialist Camp in Assisi, Italy in 2000, the Chilean military decided to reopen my case and issued an arrest warrant via Interpol.
It is worth analysing their motives: Pinochet had been arrested and the military tried to show that murder had been committed by either side. They, the innocents, had been fighting terrorism and therefore they had been obliged to step up the persecution against the Frente Patriotico as well as against myself. I was accused to have participated in the assassination of the governor general of Santiago – which I definitely did not do. The arrest of Pinochet provided possibilities of news forms of organisation for the exiled Chileans. However, this movement was frustrated as we discovered that judge Garzon simply was performing a show to provide him a democratic face in order to justify his attacks on the Basque resistance.
Yet, the Italian justice refused to extradite me to Chile as I was threatened by capital punishment. But then a motion was voted in the Chilean parliament to abolish capital punishment removing an obstacle for my persecution. However, Amnesty International denounced the fact that there is still a clause permitting military courts to apply capital punishment whenever they consider it to be appropriate – so possibly also for me.
Back to Brazil my troubles increased. I received threats of unknown origin and the doors to the universities have been closed for me. For security reasons I escaped to Bolivia where the local comrades of CLAJADEP hided me until the Third World Gathering of Global Action of the Peoples took place where I actively participated. I established relations with the cocaleros, peasant groups and urban autonomous groups. However, I was warned that problems were looming and I eventually escaped to Africa were I went into hiding for eight months without any legal problems and without being searched by Interpol. Making use of my right to move I again entered Europe via Holland. No problems what so ever were encountered until I inserted myself into the activities of the Anti-imperialist Camp 2002 in Assisi intervening with a speech. The Italian mass media started to refer to me as a terrorist. The organizers engaged in averting an attack. But the police nevertheless invaded the camp and tried to break the wall of resistance mounted by hundreds of participants. Thanks to the situation created I could escape into the basilica of Holy Francis in Assisi where I asked for refuge. But the clergy opened the ports and let in about thirty armed DIGOS agents, the political police. They violently caught me and pressed me against the wall when I tried to evade their grip.
I was expelled to South Africa. Making use of the anti-terrorist campaign the local police did not let me enter the country and held me in custody for one day in the transit area until I was finally detained by Interpol.
While expelling me the Italian authorities did not return my passport to me but gave it to the captain with a copy of the expulsion document to be passed to the South African police on arrival. Differently to the last time the DIGOS handed me to the local police on a plate. This can be explained with the fact that have been a firm participant of the Anti-imperialist Camp which is considered by them as a thorn in their side especially with the new government, the anti-terrorist campaign and the fortress Europe. And also the “manu chiliensis” reached out.
In the same way in which the thorn in the side of the Chilean military should ignite, it should trouble the Chilean government which plays the democratic circus as well as Europe where Germany declared me as a “persona non grata” which automatically applies the rest of the union. The coward official left will have to swallow my criticism facing their ignominy of whitewashing their hands with regard to my extradition. The same is true for the followers of Stalin as well as the realists and pragmatists who buried their heads like ostriches. They try to adapt to the so-called democracy and point with their finger to those who continue to struggle accusing them to do the wrong things in the wrong period of time. They do not see that the popular resistance is growing and the masses are ousting governments. They will have to join them when nothing will be left of their arsenal of justifications. I call upon the honest militants to leave those groups, to isolate them and to join the ranks of the resistance creating thousands of communities, autonomous groups who will assume the task to deliver blows to the capital and their government. I also call to abandon dogmas and to search for unity in action between Marxists, anarchists and autonomous people. Thus, the poor people will be strengthened advancing the construction of people´s power. More thorns have to be pricked into the side of the rulers. It is not important whether I stay with this or that group. What counts is what everyone of us is doing. I contribute in my way respecting diversity. My trench is the poor people in Chile, in Italy, in Brazil, in Bolivia, in Africa – no matter where.
To those who struggle for my freedom I say that there is no freedom neither outside the prison walls as long as there exists capitalism and as long as we do not have built the society without classes, state, parties, universities, religion. The world is a prison having imprisoned us altogether but like the antique slaves the modern marginalized will rise building their free spaces.
Doubtlessly we will win and we are about to make steps forward. This explains the imperial and imbecile attempts targeting me. But their seem more like the blind strokes of a moribund beast. This and nothing else is the Chilean military. But whatever their will try they will never succeed to put down my rebellion which is the rebellion of all.

Best wishes to all fighter
Professor J