General Victoriano Huerta, was a brutal, ruthless fighter -widely feared, despised and an alcoholic. He was a favourite of Mexican #dictator Porfirio #Díaz and rose quickly as he suppressed Indian uprisings and especially when hostilities broke out after a farcical 1910 #election. The opposition candidate, Francisco #Madero, had been arrested and later fled into exile, proclaiming revolution from safety in the United States. #Rebel leaders #Orozco, #Zapata and #Villa heeded the call and deposed Diaz who went into exile in 1911. Huerta however remained loyal to Diaz’s ideals and eventually betrayed Madero with Felix Diaz, nephew of the deposed dictator, in a conspiracy alongside American ambassador Henry Lane #Wilson, known as the the Decena Trágica. The cowardly Madero accepted Huerta’s “protection” being forced to resign and then murederd by Huerta’s command alongside Vice-President Pino #Suarez on February 21, 1913. Huerta was eventually driven from Mexico by a loose coalition of #revolutionaries, he spent a year and a half in exile before dying of cirrhosis in a Texas prison.

General Pancho Villa, leader of the #revolutionary army known as División del Norte who fought in the north of #Mexico helping Francisco #Madero become president in 1911. Many political betrayals occurred thereafter as revolutionary figures and heroes became villains and oppressors. In 1916 US president Woodrow #Wilson once supporting Villa during the revolution stopped as Mexico moved toward democracy. Eventually Villa was seen as an outlaw by both US and federal Mexican authorities and he managed to outsmart both them. The US Army led by General John Pershing rolled into Mexico more than 500 miles inward to kill Villa and for the first time using armored vehicles, airplanes and motorcycles yet still with mules and carriages carrying fuel. The US has consistently intervened in Mexico’s internal affairs for over 80 years and supported the longest lasting dictatorship, under the now established right-wing party known as #PRI.

General Venustiano Carranza, Mexican revolutionary and president in 1917. Was the main actor to overthrow Victoriano Huerta, the murderer of President Madero. Stubborn man and like many leaders in Mexican history, Carranza betrayed his ally, in this case Alvaro Obregon who overthrew him in 1920. The calumnious political class today follows the habits of past powers. Men of power always think only they know best.

Revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, never fell prey to power. When he became president he soon became conscious he was repeating the same patterns of oppression against the people. He returned to his home state of Morelos and continued fighting for land rights. We are a week away from celebrating Independence Day in Mexico (Sept. 16) and the political class in this country is still oppressing the people.

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The flooding of Mexico City. Los aztecas construyeron el Albarradón de Nezahualcóyotl que recorría 16 kilómetros para evitar la mezcla del agua del lago de Texcoco con las de los demás. Sirvió de presa y distribuyó agua a distintas regiones. Pero para 1521 la valla ya era inservible. Tenochtitlan sufrió tres inundaciones severas que provocaron el desnivel de lagos como Zumpango y Texcoco, en 1449 y 1555. Como comentan algunos investigadores “la cercanía de la ciudad de México con el vaso de Texcoco y el hecho de estar rodeada de elevaciones fueron causa de frecuentes inundaciones”. La más fuerte fue la del 20 de septiembre de 1629. Las lluvias ininterrumpidas habían comenzado en julio, pero no fue hasta ese día que el cielo oscureció, se acumularon las nubes sobre la capital de la Nueva España y empezaron los relámpagos. Durante treinta y seis horas llovió. Sólo la zona de Tlatelolco quedó intacta. Era tanto el asombro que el personal de Hernán Cortés pensó seriamente en abandonar esta ciudad y moverse a los lomos de Tacubaya y Tacuba. Familias enteras emigraron a otros estados como Hidalgo y Puebla, donde se asentó un desarrollo comercial importante. Cuando las aguas regresaron a sus límites naturales, la metrópoli sólo contaba con cuatrocientas familias de las veinte mil que habían habitado ahí. Se estipula que en el periodo de 1629 a 1635 murieron 30 mil personas.

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Latin America’s Largest Airport on a Lake Bed?. Master of creation Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto believes there will be no flooding in what is to be one of the country’s largest historical infrastructure developments with an initial cost of $13 billion. The thing is, the bed of the dried up Lake Texcoco on federal land is considered to be the lowest lying area in Mexico City. It is susceptible to flooding, to generating a deteriorating infrastructure and of high maintenance costs and we are already witnessing extreme thunderstorms with heavy rain causing flash floods in the city this summer, due to climate change, and we expect it to worsen. Even the former director of the National Water Commission (CONAGUA) Luis Luege agrees. Terminal 2 of the current Benito Juarez airport completed in 2007 is already showing drastic damage in infrastructure due to sinking. Also due to the fact that it’s built on a former lake. So here we go again, investing extensively for a much needed new airport but in the wrong place and on the lands of farmers who already resisted a similar project back in 2002. Unfortunately, the lake could have recreated, as it lies in a basin that receives plenty of water year round but no, we don’t think much about nature these days.

View of Lake Texcoco
©2011 Carlos Cazalis/All Rights Reserved. Mexico City, Mexico