Home » Catarino Erasmo Garza Rodríguez: Mexico will send 80 soldiers to Panama for the repatriation of a rebel general who disappeared more than a century ago

Catarino Erasmo Garza Rodríguez: Mexico will send 80 soldiers to Panama for the repatriation of a rebel general who disappeared more than a century ago

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Catarino Erasmo Garza Rodríguez: Mexico will send 80 soldiers to Panama for the repatriation of a rebel general who disappeared more than a century ago

Mexico Approves Military Mission to Retrieve Revolutionary General’s Remains

More than a century has passed since the death of the rebel Mexican general Catarino Erasmo Garza Rodríguez, who took up arms against the dictatorship of Porfirio Díaz, but it was not until this Wednesday that Mexico decided to come to the rescue of the missing soldier. The Senate of the Republic has voted in favor of a request from President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to send a military mission to Panama to search for and repatriate Garza’s remains, and in the process recover the rockinbolesque story of a soldier who, by not To be able to make the revolution in Mexico, he went into exile and even flirted with the revolutionary movement of the Cuban poet José Martí.

This story begins in 1891, when journalist Garza convened a group of men to plan the overthrow of Díaz, who controlled Mexico from 1876 to 1911. Garza had already known the prisons of the Porfiriato due to his work, critical of the regime, as he wrote incendiary articles in which he denounced the brutalities and excesses of the dictatorship. The intrepid reporter turned revolutionary managed to organize an army of men aware of the abuses of the regime, and even had the financial support of some rich landowners. Garza and his men attempted an incursion into Mexico from Texas, but the enterprise was unsuccessful, the Texan authorities began a hunt against the rebels and the frustrated revolutionary had to go into exile.

Then began the general’s American journey, which took him wandering through the Caribbean and Central America, until he reached Colombia, which was simmering with its own civil war. Garza joined that revolutionary movement and, according to some sources, he also met the poet José Martí in Central America, another romantic who dreamed of overthrowing the Spanish in his beloved Cuba and who invited him to join his insurgent movement. The Mexican general was killed in a battle in Bocas del Toro, which was then part of what was known as Gran Colombia, and his remains have been buried there ever since. President López Obrador has shown gestures during his mandate to recognize the life of the general and try to repatriate him to Mexican territory.

The Mexican authorities have begun negotiations with the Government of Panama to allow Mexican soldiers to travel to Bocas del Toro to begin the search for the soldier. The Mexican newspaper El Universal reported this Wednesday that the Mexican Senate approved, at the request of López Obrador, that 80 soldiers leave for the Central American country. According to the newspaper, the president’s request was approved with 49 votes in favor and 15 against by opposition legislators who have criticized this initiative and have alluded to the number of missing people in Mexico, more than 50,000 according to humanitarian organizations. These soldiers will participate in the excavation work along with personnel from the National Search Commission of the Ministry of the Interior. The uniformed men will set sail from Veracruz, in the southeast of the country, on February 19 and will return to Mexico on April 16. Since January, President López Obrador announced his interest in repatriating the daring Garza, whom he said “is an exceptional revolutionary” who deserves to lie on the ground for whose freedom he fought.

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