My cousin Philemon Martinez looks really impressive in his navy suit. His 1.95 meters in height, his amber-colored eyes inheritance from grandmother Matilde, a cinnamon skin that evokes Afro-mestizo origins and his corpulence, which I remind him of all his life, make him the target of feminine and masculine looks when he goes down in some from the many ports that you visit during long periods of travel around the world, aboard the Callisto, a giant cargo tanker owned by the Pacific International Line (PIL), which covers the route from Australia and New Zealand to Manzanillo.
For things of distance and time differences, Fili, as we call him of affection, telephoned me from Melbourn early Sunday morning when it was still noon Saturday in Mexico City, to congratulate me on my birthday. I heard it happy and excited, radiant, just like when I was studying at the Merchant Nautical School of Veracruz and was dressed in a white uniform that my aunt Lola was washing with the best-kept secret of the family: rainwater, to keep its colour pristine.
After the jokes and greetings, and the eerily macho and cynical confirmation that the sailors do indeed have “a love in each port and a fruit in each garden,” I asked him about his fellow merchant sailors who on Friday launched a political proclamation in favor of of the presidential candidacy of Andrés Manuel López Obrador, statement that presented at a press conference by a group of uniformed, creates the false perception among the people that “the navy” that is, elements of the Navy and Navy Secretariat of Mexico, they indiscipline their internal statutes and decide to publicly express their political preferences.
– I will explain it to you with apples and oranges so that you understand it until López Obrador, Fili told me with his unmistakable coastal accent, which is not lost among English, French, German and a little Russian, which his life as a sailor has forced him to learn.
“The merchant seaman is the personnel that works in the fleet of boats used for trade and tourism, such as cargo ships, coastal vessels, cruise ships, ferries or tanks for the transportation of fuels. The sailors are the armed force of the country, nothing to see “.
– Offer 3 million 200 thousand votes of merchant seamen for a candidate, do that sound logical?
–If that candidate is the one who offers that there will not be rejected students in the universities, if it is the same one that says that it will end unemployment and hunger, that we will be able to live with what we produce, regardless of anything of any country; if he is the candidate who threatens to stop buying the gringos the corn that people feed on, because he says he is going to give the farmers money to produce more … if that offer is for the candidate who says that the delinquency is going to end up in dialogue with the criminals and sending Bishops to forgive their sins, because it seems fair.
Of course May – he tells me seriously – that there are not more than 600 thousand merchant seamen currently working in all the ports of Mexico; It is an unrealistic commitment but tailored to the candidate on whom it is based. A mirage for someone who spends it presenting unreal offers or impossible to realize. And Pepe Mendoza, the merchant marine that appears in the declarations, is a people that militate in Morena since 2015 and that was discharged from the merchant marine last year.
In addition, Fili tells me and I believe him, at the bottom of this “proclamation” there is an interest that the authorities should investigate and society should know. He explains it to me with more pears and apples:
-In this government, the Secretariat of the Navy took control of the ports of the country, to ensure that the activity carried out by the shipping companies, that is, the relationship of Mexico with some 500 ports around the world, is carried out with based on international rules and international standard quality; but it was also done because in this business, everyone knows that ports like Veracruz, Dos Bocas, Lázaro Cárdenas or Mazatlán, are used by drug traffickers for illicit activities.
That Fili has so much information being so far away, it leaves me stunned. He continues his story: “What they want this group of merchant seamen, is that they give them a secretariat for them in the next government, different from the Navy, so that they return to take charge of the security in the ports of the country, because there is a lot of money Where do you think the contents of all the oil pipes that are stolen daily from the same refineries come from? By Dos Bocas … That’s why they killed the high captain of Dos Bocas last year because he opposed that business. ”
It sounds logical to me what the family sailor tells me. Maybe we are facing a new model in terms of security. Not only do we forgive them and give them certificates of good behaviour, but we let them continue doing their business by returning the ports, perhaps with only one condition: that they stop killing each other and kill police and soldiers. The foregoing leads me to another conclusion: just as there is no candidate, no matter how “better” you are in the polls, you can not lose, there is no sailor who can not drown. Or was it the other way around?
Source: SDP Noticias