Brazil: Two LCP Statements Denouncing Eviction, Repression of Peasants in Rondônia

The following is an unofficial translation of two recent statements from the National Commission of the League of Poor Peasants (LCP) concerning the recent repression and eviction of the peasants from the Tiago dos Santos Camp.

Down with the Crude Assembly of the Rondônia Government and its Military Police Demonization of Peasants Fighting for Land to Make Evictions, Arrests, and Massacres

LCP’s note to rural and city workers and the general public

Since the early hours of today (October 8) the government of Rondônia (RO) has sent 300 police armed to the teeth to besiege the Tiago dos Santos Camp in Nova Mutum-Paraná, where 600 families, more than 2,400 men, women, and children live. Police officers are shooting at motorcycles or anything that moves in the camp, preventing the entry of anything and even food, when hundreds of children do not drink milk since last Monday, in a real circus of terror.

Five days after the serious events in that region, a succession of events, strong revelations from the peasants of Camp Tiago dos Santos and the very behavior of the monopoly press and mainly of the “brown sites” at the service of the landowners and the gunmen, increasingly unmasking the storm of lies, provocations, accusations, threats, and the gross assembly of the Rondônia government and its military police (MP) to demonize peasant families in their hard struggle for a piece of land to work and survive.

On October 5, the day after the death of the MPs, Sebastião Martins, brother and lawyer of the biggest land grabber in Rondônia, Antônio Martins “Galo Velho (Old Rooster),” filed a petition in court asking for an injunction to remove the more than 600 families, over 2,400 men, women and children, from the Tiago dos Santos Camp. This 57,000 hectare area, stolen and kept unproductive, is the land that peasant families have been fighting for since 2016. Since then, peasants have been attacked by gunmen and removed by judicial decision. One of those who fought for this land, the companion Tiago dos Santos, was assassinated and for that reason, gave his name to the current camp.

In July of this year, the same “Old Rooster” and his brother were arrested for conspiracy, buying false documents to steal public land, and for buying judgements labeling unproductive land as productive, in addition to having blocked more than 300 million reais ($53.4 million US). Federal Judge Herculano Nacif, of the 5th Federal Court in Porto Velho, already deceased, judged all of his cases, including having been responsible for overturning the land expropriation process, which was already underway at INCRA (National Institute for Colonization and Agrarian Reform), at the time.

This is the most revealing fact after the events next to this encirclement of the camp. But, what happened before October 3, 2020?

There were almost daily flights of MP helicopters, as now, in the area of ​​the Tiago dos Santos Camp. But it is important to emphasize, once again, what is recognized by the “security authorities” of Rondônia themselves, THAT IT WAS NOT IN THE AREA WHERE THE FAMILIES ARE THAT THE MP’S WERE KILLED. Several pictures of armed “raccoons (gunmen hired by large landlords)” also circulated on the internet (as the peasants of Rondônia call the gunmen) as well as videos promising to clean up the “landless” region under the command of the “Old Rooster.”

If the first police officer who was killed were simply fishing in an area of ​​agrarian conflict, which the MP monitored with helicopter flyovers, as the versions prepared by the “brown sites,” the security secretary, and the MP command would have us believe, it would be at least very strange that, being a policeman, the dead person was unaware of the situation of tension in the region, which has been going on for at least four years.

And what about the so-called “Operation Mors,” in Jaru-RO, in July 2016, where the federal police overran and arrested a death squad that operated in the Jaru and Jamari Valley region, with dozens of executions, and in which eleven members were from the MP-RO (Eleven military police are arrested during the operation of the federal police of Rondônia).

But assuming that the dead policeman was fishing there, the fact is that those who circulate in the areas close to the camps of peasants fighting for the land are gunmen from the occupied latifundia (large landlords). It is public knowledge in RO that among the gunmen, there are always retired and active police, as evidenced by the publicly known case, among others, of Sergeant Moisés (from MP RO), in the slaughter of nine peasants, in Coniza-MT, on April 19, 2017 (Case Sergeant Moisés JB News and Case against Sergeant Moisés in the Official Gazette of Matogrosso of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Region). Why so lightly and automatically does this corrupt press in RO, the MP command, and the security secretary attribute the death of the MP’s to the peasants, when it is a well-known practice of police officers who serve as raccoons for landowners to torture and murder peasants and burn cars? It is, for example, the case of the murdered young peasants Alyson and Ruan in February 2016, at Fazenda Tucumã, in Cujubim-RO, a crime for which landowners, policemen, and gunmen, led by the same fugitive sergeant Moisés from the aforementioned Coniza slaughter, must answer. In this case, it is evident that the policemen who entered the area where the retired MP was killed, did not go there simply to fetch his body, but to “clean up the dirt,” since another MP was killed and others injured in “confrontation” with the “landless.”

The accusation against the peasants is so absurd that it contradicts the logic of the version of this corrupt press in Rondônia and its “brown sites,” that of the MP command and security secretary. When setting up such a version that it was the peasants of that camp who killed the policeman who was fishing, they did not realize the inconsistency of the lie. In other words, that the “gang of landless criminals,” as demonized by peasants fighting for land, “murdered the retired policeman who was fishing” and that these “highly dangerous bandits,” as stated by the security secretary in interview, let the companions of the dead policeman cross the river and leave. This version corroborates exactly with the thesis that the killers are raccoons of the “Old Rooster,” who set up to cruelly kill the policeman and let his companions escape so they could ask the army corporation for help. A provocation for the already-bought press to set up its scream to influence public opinion and to justify that the State and its organs of repression, with blood in their eyes, fell on the peasants and razed their camp. Likewise, it is the version that a police contingent, following the denunciation of the murder by those who escaped, would have gone to the scene to rescue the body and been shot, had to leave with the death of a sergeant and injuries to others. According to the complaint of those who escaped, how large was the contingent that was sent? It was not large because otherwise they would not have backed down. If it was small, why did they do so in the face of the murder of a policeman in an area of ​​agrarian conflict? Crude assembly!

Knowing the police of Rondônia, in which the Secretary of Public Security, Colonel José H. Cysneiros Pachá, an MP-RO officer well-known for his direct participation in the repulsive Massacre of Corumbiara of August 9, 1995 (Corumbiara officers received promotions), then lieutenant at the time, who can doubt that if these parasitic defenders of the land-grabbing landlords really believed that the police were murdered by “terrorists” and “armed landless militias,” LCP, etc., would they not have immediately promoted a bloodbath as they did in Corumbiara, Eldorado dos Carajás, and so many others that bloodied the peasants’ struggle for land in the history of our country?

In Rondônia, the MP command knows, everyone knows, that the latifundio’s pistol schemes work inside and outside that corporation, and usually when there is a “mismatch,” conflicts of interest or other contradictions in the correctness of the criminal matter, the solution is very violent. Hence, the machinations of the landowners with the elimination of police officers cannot be excluded in order to provoke the demonization and fury of the repressive forces of the State against the peasants fighting for land, exactly in order to expel them.

Just to remind you, in the early 2000s, three peasants, including two LCP activists, were accused and arrested for murdering an employee, in fact raccoon of the “Old Rooster,” in the dispute over land that has been proven to be illegally taken. At the trial, the lawyer for the peasants recalled the day when former president João Figueiredo had given that land to the peasants. One of the LCP activists spent four years in prison, at least two years in Urso Branco. At the aforementioned trial, one of the prosecution witnesses, a military man, subordinate to the then-Major Enedy, recognized that policemen from Rondônia, to supplement their pay, worked as security for landowners. The widow of the dead raccoon also reported the strange insistence of “Old Rooster” to procrastinate her husband receiving his “back pay” for so long. The peasants were acquitted after being publicly demonized, defamed, and morally lynched.

This is what, once again, we are experiencing!

The peasants of Camp Tiago dos Santos, the more than 600 families, more than 2,400 men, women, and children, are ordinary people, peasants who have already been expelled from their possessions in a cowardly manner and illegally, many went to work in the construction of Jirau and were unemployed, penniless, far from their families, “rotated.” Together they are fighting for this public land, stolen and taken over by landowners who are considered criminals by the justice of this old state, with the collusion of judges and civil servants, as the only way to survive in the face of brutal unemployment, misery, pandemic, and violence against the people!

In addition to situations of gross montages such as this in order to justify the continuation of the centuries-old massacre of peasants and the defense of landowning thieves of public lands, and when they grow tired of the endless exploitation and suffering, peasants radicalize the struggle for land, and landowners demonize them even more in order to massacre them. This parasite rite, after sucking the sweat suffered by these humble Brazilian workers and hardworking hands, still wants their blood. In order to take his hideous and disgraceful crime, he insists on defaming them as “landless tramps” and, when they face and do not bend, “bandits” or “terrorists!”

The peasants are innocent!

The League of Poor Peasants is a movement for the struggle for land!

This group of reactionaries are terrorists and murderers, servants on the payroll of landowners who are thieves of public lands, who want the blood of these peasant families, humble workers. In addition to crude montages such as the case in question, also in every struggle that these honorable Brazilians radicalize for being exhausted from being sucked to the last drop of sweat by these exploiters, centuries-old thieves of public lands, and other parasites that surround them, as this cheap, lying, corrupt press by RO, shameless corrupt politicians, and fascist military men, accustomed to feeding themselves with the blood of defenseless and unarmed impoverished masses, insist on every opportunity to hatefully demonize them as “landless vagabonds” when they face them and don’t bend.

The peasants are innocent, they are honorable workers!

The League of Poor Peasants is a movement of these Brazilians, disinherited from everything, fighting for land!

Even a buffoon senator, the target of several lawsuits for participation in murder, embezzlement of public money, and participation in paramilitary militias, went to Nova Mutum Paraná to appear as if he were in the area of ​​the conflict, to wave his slovenly and repulsive flag of fascism.

This pile of garbage demonizes the peasants and their sacred fight against the stealing of land and launches slaughters and massacres against them, it does, moreover, to serve their blood at the banquets where they hand over Brazil with a kiss to their imperialist masters.

This is the truth!

May the true Democrats and Progressives rise up against this announced crime and the bloodbath against the peasants of Camp Tiago dos Santos.

Down with the demonization and criminalization of the struggle for land!

Land for those who live and work on it!

Long live the Tiago dos Santos Camp!

Terrorists and murderers are liars at the service of landowners who are thieves of public lands!

National Peasant Peasants League Commission

Goiânia, October 8, 2020

Note No. 2 of the National LCP Commission to rural and city workers and the general public

The very serious, criminal, cruel, cynical, and cowardly events that took place from October 10 in Nova Mutum Paraná, at the Tiago dos Santos Camp, prove “ipsis litteris (word for word)” everything that is denounced and stated in the previous note of the National Commission of the LCP.

Encircled camp, children without milk (milk donated by small besiegers in the district of Nova Mutum Paraná), helicopters flying over the area, shooting and dumping ammunition capsules (the ammunition of large caliber weapons announced by the MP that would belong to the LCP’s “bandits” but which actually belong to the gunmen of Galo Velho and the raccoons (as the peasants claim the gunmen in Rondônia) in uniform, a real terror against the more than 600 families and 2,400 men, women, and children of the Tiago dos Santos Camp. Saturday morning, the 10th, the beginning of a long holiday, the brown sites of the latifundio spokesmen and the military apparatus of the State released the MP’s note on the “Ordo” operation.

The headline alone would explain everything:

ORDO: Note from the military police on operation in an area of ​​agrarian conflict
The MP carried out police actions of a confidential nature due to a judicial decision

Police actions of a confidential nature against more than 2,400 men, women and children? This is the password to kill and practice all kinds of cowardice against the peasant masses. And that is what actually happened and is still happening.

Photos began to appear of arrests of peasants in the area and of peasants executed in the forest, and although the information still cannot be fully confirmed, many of these prisoners were professionals (taxi drivers, small traders, etc.) who provided services to Tiago dos Santos Camp (in every struggle for land, in any part of the country, the presence of masses where previously there was only unproductive latifundio is an encouragement for small traders and service providers).

In the afternoon, to relieve the authorship of the gross assemblies of the Rondônia government and its MP to demonize and attack the peasants, as well as to justify and cover up the crimes that were being and would be committed, all this pile of lies passes in press conference for the Civil Police Delegate, Leisaloma C. Resem.

Pretending to be judicious, the ventriloquist also tried not to commit too much, stating that “the criminals are members of the League of Poor Peasants (LCP),” that is, it is not the LCP, the movement, but some members. But her practice of half truths and whole lies is revealed, in addition to all the lies accusing peasants and not the gunmen of Galo Velho for the death of the MP who was fishing, in the subtlety of stating that “Lieutenant Figueiredo was tortured and shot while he was fishing with three friends on the Cotia River that passes through the Nova Brasil farm, an area of ​​agrarian conflict.” Why is it that the “doctor” does not speak the truth? The Cotia River “passes” through the area of ​​the Tiago dos Santos Camp, as the rivers pass and often divide several municipalities throughout Brazil. Not to admit, as the LCP stated, that IT WAS NOT IN THE AREA WHERE ARE THE FAMILIES ARE THAT THE MP`S WERE KILLED.

Still on Saturday, October 10, in the afternoon, the MP announced that it had in hand a “repossession order” that had not yet been officially published, with forceps pulled out, handing over land to Antônio Martins Galo Velho, as we denounced and proved abundantly in our previous note.

And on Sunday the 11th, exactly in the middle of a long holiday, to hinder any contestation against the legal justification to cover up the crude assembly and the crimes of the MP, the masses of the Tiago dos Santos Camp are attacked.

Surrounded, attacked by helicopters, being shot by rubber bullets, the men, women, and children resist, hold up their flags, sing hymns, and shout at the top of their lungs: THERE IS NO BANDIT HERE! The state’s war apparatus yields families when hundreds of children start to feel sick and pass out due to chemical weapons (pepper gas bombs) dropped on the camp.

These are scenes of war. With all the care the MP took to ensure the images showed no resemblance to the Massacre of Santa Elina, in the account among others of the Secretary Of Security of Rondônia Coronel José Hélio Cysneiros Pacha, but the similarities are real, and crimes are being practiced in secret as we will show later.

The peasants were surrendered, taken from their meager financial and cellular resources, piled up at gunpoint and dumped in a nearby village, forced to remove their masks in the midst of a growing state pandemic.

Little by little, videos of the Dantesque scenes, sneaked by peasants who managed to deceive the beast of police repression, record and hide cell phones, are arriving.

In an eagerness to justify their crimes, the MP released photos of the “evidence” that the peasants would be bandits and criminals: machetes and hunting weapons, solar heaters, and internet equipment. Scoundrels and ignoramuses. Everything they divulged only proves the opposite of what they stated in their crude montage.

In an area of ​​forest, of 57,000 hectares, who survives without a machete and shotgun? Can’t organized peasants have energy? And what about the internet, if they were bandits, would the peasants be communicating with their families?

Liars! Murderers!

But when attempting to criminalize peasants expelled from public land, the MP showed what it had, and revealed that there was NOTHING THAT THEY SAID IN THEIR GROSS FRAMING, heavy weapons, rifles, etc., etc., etc.

The next steps of the gross assembly of the government and the MP are already outlined. With the area being controlled by a war apparatus operating under secrecy, peasants will be murdered and “evidence” of their “crimes” will be planted. Proof of what we are saying is on display, on the brown websites of the MP and the landowners of Rondônia, of photos of alleged members of the LCP who are responsible for the death of the MP’s. They are “goats marked to die.”

At Camp Tiago dos Santos, around 100 families were already on their plots. In the areas where LCP operates, the camping period is provisional. The lands are measured, cut and handed over to the peasants. All in assembly, democratically, by lot. This is called Corte Popular, applied by the League and is a practice that spread through several struggles and movements. Families go to areas already defined by the “Corte Popular” by parts. At Camp Tiago dos Santos, due to the previous fight since 2016, one of the criteria was time spent there, a priority for those who started the fight. Among these families there are many missing peasants.

But those who think that this is an action exclusively by the latifundio, the MP, and the government of Rondônia are mistaken.

The buffoon senator we mentioned in the last note is Flávio Bolsonaro, who was there on behalf of his father and the executioner of Haiti, General Heleno, endorse and authorize this war operation against the people.

Let all Democrats, progressives, and honest people all over Brazil raise their voices immediately. Anyone who has lived or knows the history of the civil-military dictatorship between 1964 and 1985 knows that this “Operation Ordo” has the same “modus operandi” of those times and have never been clean.

It was thanks to these voices that it has arisen, in the four corners of the country and also abroad, that all this monstrous operation (more for its hideous face than for its size) did not achieve the success that its authors desired, because in spite of all the lies that are spread mainly in Rondônia and the attacks against the Tiago dos Santos Camp, the peasants remained united, shouting the truth and swearing that they will reorganize the Tiago dos Santos Camp.

It’s the facts.

Peasants are innocent, they are honorable workers!

The League of Poor Peasants is a movement of these Brazilians, disinherited from everything, fighting for land! The more repression, persecution, and murder, the more forcefully and firmly we will respond to the challenge!

In the hardest and most difficult moments, our flags were in the hands of these men, women, and children who fight for their right to work and survive, for the right to land; our flags were in the hands of this mass of slandered and cowardly attacked with pepper gas, bombs, helicopters and rifles; our flags were in the hands of these peasants stolen by the Rondônia MP, both in personal property and in creation and plantations, not to mention the daily expropriation carried out by the exploiting classes. Our flags could not be anywhere else.

As they are also hoisted in many parts of Brazil, as well as at Camp Manoel Ribeiro in the resumption of the last part of the Santa Elina farm, where the blood of peasants was generously shed by the same cowardly MP who was a protector of the landowners who owned public land. Camp Manoel Ribeiro is the next target of this cowardly and criminal operation.

The masses of poor peasants and the League of Poor Peasants will follow the struggle for land, whatever happens.

And all the terror that the latifundio, the big bourgeoisie, imperialism, and fascists use to attack these peasant masses will not silence or drown in blood the struggle for land, bread, justice, and a new democracy.

Down with the demonization and criminalization of the struggle for land!
Land for those who live and work on it!
Down with the attack on Camp Tiago dos Santos!
Terrorists and murderers are liars at the service of landowners who are thieves of public lands!
We demand the end of Operation ORDO and the unmasking of all criminal secrets that surround it!

National Commission of Poor Peasant Leagues

Goiânia, October 14, 2020


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