The Lacandon Jungle’s Last Stand Against Corporate Globalization

Plan Puebla Panama and the fight to preserve biodiversity and indigenous rights in Chiapas

By Ryan Zinn

Special to CorpWatch

September 26, 2002

Montes Azules, Mexico —
A battle is raging in Chiapas’ Montes Azules Integral Biosphere, Mexico’s
Garden of Eden. The last stand against corporate resource exploitation
is taking place in this remote, lush tropical jungle, home to Mayan communities.
Best known for ancient pyramids and endangered species like the toucan
and jaguar, this modern day “El Dorado” is now threatened by the search
for black and green gold: oil and biodiversity.

    Caught in the cross-fire are indigenous communities, many of them Zapatista supporters,
who are resisting the devastating effects of corporate globalization. The
zone has recently been marred by violence and plagued by paramilitary attacks
against these communities. Local residents believe the attacks to be the
latest stage in the Mexican government’s efforts to oust indigenous people
from the Biosphere.

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