Inspiration: When Mountains Tremble

Just watched the amazing movie with the above title about Guatemala's indigenous social revolution as it unfolded in early 1980s, clearly pitting security, profit making and land grabbing US backed corporations, against land sharing indigenous ways ...

Here is an excerpt showing US military involvement, and how local peasants were restricted in their movements as the war escalated ....



It was presented as a freedom vs. communism dichotomy in both media and obviously mainstream politics.

Makes me think today's brave documentary filmmaker should go to Somalia and Taliban heartlands to see what is happening there, and to show the nuances, and the sad reality of spiraling violence, and what people stand for and what way of life they are fighting for, or what they are fighting for. Their treatment of women seems to be horrible. But I have heard too many false speeches and seen too much slanted reporting, that I only can judge when I see for myself.

There's also always a tricky moment when righteous social claims are instrumentalized by political or rebel types and the movement descends into unfortunate violence and heavy handed doctrination.



The Guatemala movie has Rigoberta Menchu as the placid, behind the scenes, powerful narrator. Sadly and obviously, the violence escalated in Guatemala, and indigenous lost the most, despite their initial efforts to resist. After a book was written about her, I, Rigoberta Menchu, she was a surprise Nobel Peace Prize laureate in 1992, the first indigenous and youngest winner, and probably one of the most eloquent ones as this movie testifies.

It also all reminds me of great lyrics by the closest of my modern day prophets, Ivorian reggae star Alpha Blondy .... "la democratie bananiere finira par la guerre civile ..." banana plantation democracy will result in civil war" ... (think Liberia's rubber and Cote d'Ivoire's cocoa for example ...)

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