The patterns are much too familar to ignore. Those of us who saw first-hand how the U.S. presidential election of 2004 was stolen here in Ohio, we cannot avoid the conclusion that Mexico's presidential election is also on the brink of being stolen. Too many of the symptoms are being repeated, too much of what happened in Florida 2000 and Ohio 2004 is being repeated to believe otherwise.
To those in Mexico who still believe in democracy, we urge you to avoid the mistakes made here. Do not doubt for one minute that fraud, intimidation and outright theft are the tell-tale trademarks of the Bush junta and its overseas minions.
Above all, DO NOT GIVE IN.
But make no mistake: to allow this election to be stolen is to welcome the death of what is left of your democracy. Those who think, in going on with their daily lives, they can somehow avoid the fallout of such a theft is delusional folly.
If you allow this theft to stand, every facet of life in your country will be tainted and polluted, as has happened her.
But they've done the opposite. Despite losing the popular vote by more than 500,000 ballots (not counting those so obviously trashed or stolen), the Bush junta immediately launched a total assault against its opponents. It has waged a full-bore attack against every sacred pillar of American democracy. It plunged into a catastrophic, illegal war. It has shredded the Bill of Rights. It operates with complete contempt for the U.S. Constitution. It considers itself above the law and will tolerate no one who says otherwise. It has established concentration camps and indulges in torture. It also steals from the public treasury with absolute impunity. For all their "religious faith," these are the moneychangers who have taken over the temple.
Emboldened by its theft of the 2004 election, the Bush junta's attacks on the remnants of American democracy are only escalating.
This is what you can expect in Mexico if this election is finally stolen. It's clear this latest theft was engineered in part by those who perpetrated the frauds of Florida 2000 and Ohio 2004. We have seen how they did it here. The same things were done in Mexico, but with local variations.
So if he is allowed to take office, this illegitimate, unelected leader being foisted on you is almost certain to do to you what Bush/Rove has done to us. He will shred your democracy, spy on you, arrest you in the name of fighting terror or whatever other excuse he can concoct. He will also ruin your economy, pollute your land, air and water and make every aspect of Mexican life more dangerous and less just.
If you believe a middle ground will emerge and that such an illegitimate regime will seek compromise, you could not be more wrong.
From the tragic land of Ohio, we cannot urge you strongly enough: DO NOT LET THEM STEAL THIS ELECTION. Your lives and immediate future depend on it, not to mention the future of your nation.
Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman are co-editors of WHAT HAPPENED IN OHIO?, upcoming from the New Press, and co-authors of HOW THE GOP STOLE AMERICA'S 2004 ELECTION & IS RIGGING 2008, available at http://www.freepress.org/. and www.harveywasserman.com.