Harriet Tubman: A Biography (Greenwood Biographies)

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USD Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Overview This concise biography of Harriet Tubman, the African American abolitionist, explores her various roles as an Underground Railroad conductor, Civil War scout and nurse, and women's rights advocate. About the Author The late James A. William C. Kashatus holds a doctorate in history from the University of Pennsylvania.

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It was Zapata this and Zapata that. But we said that he was only a peasant, not an intellectual. Tepepa and his followers were among them. The first major objective for the Ayalan led force was to capture Cuautla. It was, Torres Burgos probably suspected, the easiest major town to attack, as it was a center of Leyvista activity during the gubernatorial election and hence the place most likely to supply supporters. In fact, when Torres Burgos decided it was time for action a little more than a week after arriving in Puebla, Zapata objected, believing that the men needed more training before they would be ready to defeat the various village police or any federal troops that they might encounter.

Torres Burgos, as leader, insisted that the campaign begin. The immediate aims were small. No attempt would be made to occupy towns; they would simply be entered, and weapons, supplies, and volunteers would be gathered. The tactic worked; there was little resistance. Zapata, however, was not sent to the biggest immediate target, Jojutla, where Torres Burgos and Tepepa, who knew the area well, went. Zapata remained in the eastern part of Morelos, the area bordering Puebla around Jonacatepec. Torres Burgos thus resigned from his position. While returning home, he and his two sons were surprised by federales and killed: their corpses were later displayed in Cuautla.

The day Torres Burgos died, Zapata was voted in as the new leader of the revolutionary forces in Morelos. His forces, by this point, had reached about 1, and were growing bigger by the day, while the number of federal forces shrank because troops had been removed to the north, where the situation seemed more serious. Zapata ignored the offer, determined to see the revolution succeed. Other leaders in the south, particularly Ambrosio Figueroa, were not as strong in their convictions. Figueroa was from Huitzuco, Guerrero, but began operating in Morelos to strengthen his position, as Morelos was closer to Mexico City.

Figueroa, Zapata came to believe, had made an agreement not to engage in battle with federal troops, which would have forced Zapata to face them alone. The man was executed, and Zapata put the idea of attacking Jojutla behind him. He now began to consider how to improve his position within the Maderista movement, but he was interested in more than personal power. He wanted to improve his bargaining position in order to push for land reform once the revolution succeeded.

To do that, he needed to achieve bigger victories and occupy territory. Here, he used 2, men to drive out about well barricaded soldiers, who, armed with machine guns, were able to hold off defeat for four days. It is likely that Zapata introduced the use of dynamite boys during the siege of Jonacatepec.

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Dunn describes such an attack in the following terms: Seven small boys, fourteen or fifteen years old, loitered in the plaza, Chasing each other, they crossed the little park, and began playing in the wide street in front of the barracks. All of them lighted [sic] long black cigars from one match. They spread out, one remaining before the open door, three on each side, running or playing leapfrog away from him. The door-guards watched them idly. Suddenly, the little fellows reached inside their ragged shirts. They withdrew small, round, bright objects, tin cans, with a short piece of string dangling from each.

The boys touched these strings to the burning ends of their cigars, then hurled the round, bright objects at the cuartel. A section of the roof rose into the air. The two guards disappeared. Fragments of other men came through the gaping doorway. Zapata surrounded Cuautla by May 12 and began his attack the next day. The tactics that he had been using on garrisons were not as effective here, for the entrances to the streets and other open approaches to the city were covered by machine guns, making an approach with cavalry lines doomed to failure.

The next day, Zapata had gasoline poured into the aqueducts, in which federales held otherwise unreachable positions, and lit it. During the siege, General Leyva, who had been ordered to establish peace in Morelos, again sought out Zapata, this time asking for him to sign a peace treaty. I only tell you that if you do not turn over Cuernavaca to me, I will have you shot. Most of the men would never have made the thirty miles from Cuautla if it had not been for the help of their women, who had pushed them and dragged them along. The battle demonstrated the need for his government to send significant numbers of troops to the south rather than concentrating a majority of them in the north, where the Maderistas had their strongest support.

His influence, however, remained. Indeed, the reputation of his men for disorderliness and violence would plague him in the coming months, though the reports in the Mexico City papers were mostly propaganda. Events were overtaking Zapata; capturing Cuautla had taken too long, and by May 22, Figueroa, who had by this time signed a peace treaty with Leyva, had established control over Cuernavaca, which remained the center of political activity in Morelos.

Zapata, if he were aware of such concerns being raised, ignored the slight. Zapata insisted that the lands that had been taken from the villages be returned immediately so that the promise of the revolution could be fulfilled. My soldiers—the armed farmers and all the people in the villages—demand that I tell you, with full respect, that they want the restitution of their lands to be got underway right now. Still, Zapata tried to strengthen his alliance with Madero, inviting him to Morelos on June Zapata then seemed to be manipulated into disarming.

The operation began on June 13 and was overseen by Zapata. His soldiers were paid to turn in their weapons, and 3, of them, for which the government had paid 47, pesos by June 21,25 were turned in. Whether or not they were the actual weapons that had been used to defeat the federales is not known for certain, but Zapata would be able to quickly mobilize an armed force less than a month later.

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Many women, the report said, had fled the city. On June 20, he was back in Mexico City, meeting with Madero about the media reports. Zapata was able to convince Madero that the situation had been exaggerated in the press, but he also seemed to give up any pretensions that he had to power, agreeing to relinquish his appointment to become commander of the police and to retire from revolutionary activity.

For the only thing I wanted when I went into the revolution was to defeat the dictatorial regime, and this has been accomplished. Events over the next five weeks, although not exactly encouraging to the cause of change, because the hacendados and other conservative figures continued to manipulate the situation to protect their interests, failed to convince him to change his mind.

He even resisted calls for him to run for governor of Morelos, an idea that began as a grassroots movement but eventually gained the support of some of the more affluent in Morelos. In any case, he got ready to settle down, marrying Josefa Espejo in a civil ceremony on July Michael J. Adolfo Gilly, The Mexican Revolution, trans. Several sources, apparently on the authority of Harry H. Dunn, assert that Zapata used these boys in the siege of Yautepec, an attack that began with the use of dynamite boys.

Revolution and Betrayal in Mexico Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, , see 36, however, make clear that Zapata did not take part in that siege, suggesting Dunn misremembered the name of the town. See Harry H. McBride, , 49— Philip S. Jowett, A. Dunn, The Crimson Jester, 49— King, Tempest over Mexico, Peter V.

Henderson, In the Absence of Don Porfirio, Henderson seems to ignore the fact that the haciendas enforced their land grabs with the arms of the rurales and, sometimes, of their own men. Zapata saw victory as a negation of the old order, whereas Madero saw it as a condemnation of the figures who controlled that order. Such forces had been pushing Zapata toward taking up arms again for more than a month.

Zapata quickly mobilized forces in Morelos with the intention of heading to Puebla from Cuautla but was told to stay where he was. Zapata returned home, and although his men remained prepared should problems arise 46 EMILIANO ZAPATA and new recruits began to join his forces, he focused his energies on settling down, working his fields, preparing to resume horse breeding, and organizing his religious wedding. Zapata was keeping his forces armed, in fact, to protect the gains that the campesinos had made since the summer of Zapata refused the invitation, first telling Madero that he was ill and later claiming that he feared that enemies of the revolution might seize on the opportunity to have them both assassinated.

Zapata did finally send Eufemio, who had joined him when the fighting broke out and remained in Morelos thereafter, but nothing was accomplished at that meeting. Zapata ignored the order, continuing to go about his private business as if giving up an active role in the revolution were his genuine intention, even as his defiance with regard to disarming left those in the central government distrustful.

The quarrelling also led Figueroa to refuse, at least for the time being, the governorship. Madero sought to negotiate with Zapata, writing to him and asking him to come to Cuernavaca. Zapata stayed where he was but spoke with Madero over the phone. They want to be paid attention to and listened to. Just because they make a protest, nobody can try to shut them up with bayonets. De la Barra began to reconsider his options after receiving a telegram from Madero, one that arrived a day later than it should have.

It explained the disadvantages of confronting Zapata with military might. Doing so, Madero reasoned, could lead to an extended conflict. Zapata, after all, already had about a thousand followers mobilized and could quickly gather more if he needed to do so. Moreover, other Maderistas were more likely to join Zapata than to provide assistance to the federal army, against which they had recently fought. Finding a peaceful solution to the problem was thus the safest thing to do. Disarmament would begin the following day under the direction of Maderistas rather than federal troops.

The attack on Jojutla provided de la Barra with an excuse to allow Huerta to stay put. Zapata seemed to place his faith in Madero, beginning to demobilize on August De la Barra thus ordered Huerta to continue his march toward Yautepec. Zapata followed him and again affirmed his commitment to the agreement that the two had just signed. At the same time, Figueroa was sent to the border region around Puebla to prevent disturbances such as the one in Jojutla a few days earlier.

Zapata then restarted demobilizing his forces, though questions about the validity of the effort remained for de la Barra and Huerta. The move enraged Zapata and his men; Eufemio even called for Madero to be shot as a traitor. De la Barra went so far as to have criminal charges filed against Zapata and to order his arrest. Two days later, Zapata would again reach out to de la Barra, protesting that the blood that was about to be shed was the responsibility of the government.

Zapata had, at least as he saw it, made an agreement with Madero in good faith and had been attacked for his trouble. Morales arrived at Chinameca first and stormed its front gate, but without first surrounding the property. Zapata was thus able to slip out the back, escaping through sugarcane fields. Over the next couple of weeks, Zapata laid low. Huerta imposed order on all six districts of Morelos, and by the end of the month, he believed he had achieved victory. Morelos was apparently under government control.


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  4. The governors were to be replaced, the manifesto went on to say, with candidates chosen in free elections or with men picked by the generals and chiefs—that is, those who signed the document—of what they were inaccurately calling the Counterrevolution. The document also called for the removal of federal troops from the four states; the postponement of the presidential elections; the release of all political prisoners; and the return of land, as well as water and timber rights, to the villages.

    Huerta left Cuernavaca on September Confident that Zapata would be easily captured, he told Mrs. When Huerta reached Puebla, his troops clashed with the Zapatistas, who retreated after short skirmishes. Huerta was thus drawn higher into the mountains, a territory with which he and his soldiers had little familiarity. Taking advantage of their greater knowledge of the region, Zapata and about of his men slipped around the federal troops and, riding fast, emerged in eastern Morelos 24 hours later.

    Over the next few days, Zapata stepped up recruitment. Huerta was still in Puebla, but Zapata, in some respects, remained cautious, limiting his actions to what amounted to raids on such places as Axochiapan and Tenextepango rather than attempting to occupy towns. He moved north, leaving the confines of Morelos behind him and entering the federal district of Mexico City, where he attacked and briefly occupied the Milpa Alta garrison.

    For his part, Madero was able to insist that de la Barra dismiss Huerta.

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    Although he was still regarded as a bandit by the government and the press, he had become something much more important to the campesinos. They may have learned to admire him before, but they now looked upon him as a figure behind whom they could rally and seek what they thought the revolution should have brought them. He could turn himself in tomorrow. It called for the Zapatistas to replace, gradually, the federales in Morelos; the agrarian reforms for which Zapata had initially taken up arms to be instituted; and the actions of those who had fought with Zapata in recent months to be sanctioned as legitimate.

    Madero, perhaps fearing his authority would be undermined by giving in to a man most people in the country considered a bandit, had changed his mind and now refused to sanction, publicly at least, any agreement. In this case I will pardon his soldiers for the crime of rebellion and he will be given passports so that he can go and settle temporarily outside the state. Inform him that his rebellious attitude is damaging my government greatly and that I cannot tolerate that it continue under any circumstances, that if he truly wants to serve me, to obey me is the only way he can do it.

    Let him know that he need fear nothing for his life if he lays down his arms immediately. Then he ordered most of his men, no match for the superior weapons of the federal army, to retreat. The first of these sections proclaims that land appropriated from the villages will be returned to those who hold the original titles.

    The next states that a third of the land held by large landowners will be confiscated and distributed among the villages, or pueblos, and ordinary citizens so that impoverished Mexicans will have the opportunity to improve their conditions. The last concerns those landowners who oppose the Zapatista reform; their entire estates will be confiscated. At this point, the Zapatistas were held together— though not always—by the perception of a common cause.

    They lacked a steady source of income and weapons, relying on donations from supporters or on what could be captured in raids. Furthermore, the movement was disorganized in some ways: Zapata had no secure center of operations; he moved from temporary camp to temporary camp to avoid being captured or killed, and each chief, or general, was left to operate in his own area of Morelos in a semi-independent fashion.

    Despite the limited reach of its soldiers, the threat of Zapatismo was recognized in Mexico City. Madero has betrayed me as well as my army, the people of Morelos, and the whole nation. The support Zapata would get was not unconditional and was threatened by the activity of bandits, some of whom were Zapatistas, whereas others were simply operating under the guise of being revolutionaries. Quoted in Samuel Brunk, Emiliano Zapata! Stanley Robert Ross, Francisco I. Many sources date the issuance of the plan as November 28, See, for example, Anita Brenner and George R.

    Plan de Ayala, trans. One of the first things they did was to make their forces more professional. Zapata introduced, at the end of —probably at the same time the Plan de Ayala was drafted—a command structure that brought a sense of cohesion to his army. He was now styled generaland-chief, while his brother Eufemio served as the chief of seven generals, who were, in turn, in command of 27 colonels, as well as a number of captains, other officers, and soldiers.

    The commands were not military in nature. He also sought to counteract the damage that banditry could cause his movement. They maintained a firm hold on the towns in which their troops were stationed, but the Zapatistas were, if not in control of the areas outside those towns, able to operate freely in the countryside.

    Rebels, under the direct command of Genovevo de la O, were even threatening Cuernavaca, and they came close to taking the city in January They were slowed down, but not defeated, at the end of the month. Figueroa resigned as governor, pleasing even Madero loyalists, who had been unhappy with his governorship and hoped a local would be named to take his place.

    Two days later, on January 19, martial law was declared for four months. All the small villages are on the side of Emiliano Zapata. Major centers like Tepalcingo support his forces and greet them with abundant supplies, whereas they display a hostile attitude to government troops and refuse them everything. And it had more than enough latifundias, taverns and bosses. Such brutality hardened the resistance, and Naranjo had little power to stop it.

    That policy involved relocating people who might prove allies to Zapata from their homes to concentration camps close to large towns, where they could be more easily monitored. The practice was a standard method of fighting guerrillas for the Mexican army, but Robles went beyond simply forcing people from their homes. The first village to suffer such a fate was Nexpa.

    Women and children, for the most part, were the only ones remaining within the village on the day it was attacked; all were arrested and moved to housing outside of Jojutla, where they were forced to remain even after being released from custody. Houses in Villa de Ayala were also burned, and more villages were soon added to the list of those destroyed, all before the end of February.

    During this same period, peones or campesinos could be and were shot simply for being suspected of supporting or belonging to the Zapatistas, that is, for being in the open countryside rather than in a concentration camp. A political means to suppress the uprising was not entirely abandoned, however. General Leyva came to Cuernavaca on February 20 to negotiate with certain rebels, particularly de la O, but not, significantly, Zapata.

    The option of negotiating a peace, an idea Madero also explored through forming a commission that was studying the underlying cause of unrest in Morelos, became increasingly less likely. The willingness of the Zapatistas to accept government offers was perhaps best summed up in a letter Zapata sent to de la O and Pedro Celestino on March By the time that report was released, Zapata was even less likely to negotiate. At the end of March, the Zapatistas went on the offensive again, forcing Robles to confine his forces, some of which had been redeployed to the north where Orozco had launched his rebellion, to the larger towns.

    Despite establishing de facto control over the countryside, Zapata could not wrest control of the entire state from the government. The Zapatistas were constantly obliged to take strategic withdrawals.


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    By early May, the Zapatistas were suffering from shortages of ammunition. They had, at one point, unsuccessfully appealed to Orozco for arms, hoping they could be smuggled into the region over water and through Guerrero. The cost of success, in short, damaged the chances of achieving a complete victory. Another problem that led to a slackening of attacks was the need for recruits to return to their homes for the planting season.

    The result was a virtual stalemate between Zapatistas in the countryside and the federales in the towns. Naranjo saw in the lull of attacks an opportunity. Telling Madero, with unwarranted optimism, that the federales would soon take control of the south, Naranjo pushed the president to remove Robles from Morelos and worked to guarantee that martial law would come to an end on May 19, as it was scheduled to do. On that day, an election having already been arranged by Naranjo, most places voted in an electoral college, which, the following week, elected reformers who had sought legal means to end the injustices in Morelos.

    He thus put an end to the resettlement policy and did all he could to rebuild the life of the villages. He even refused to reintroduce harsh methods of suppression, despite his being urged to do so, after soldiers and civilians were killed during Zapatista attacks on trains near the end of July and at the beginning of August, a period in which the Zapatistas were able to stage almost daily attacks on either army outposts or trains. President Madero is doing his best for them, but he needs cooperation.

    The conservatives, using all the tricks of politics, fight him at every step, and how can he force through his reforms if the people he wants to help will not back him? The rebellion in Morelos was in the process of being put to an end. They eventually threatened to put to death the messengers that Madero kept sending to push Zapata to agree to unacceptable peace terms. In the meantime, the state legislature, which was composed primarily of ordinary, if respected, locals who accepted the principles of the revolution as Zapata understood them, was doing all it could to challenge the notion that rebellion was necessary, proposing legislation that would aid small landowners and small merchants.

    Its efforts would be halted by the truncated nature of its legislative session. The next election was to take place in August: those sworn into office in July had taken their seats at the end of the official term of the 22nd legislature, which had begun late because of the rebellion. Soon afterward, things became so bad for the Zapatistas that many villages stopped offering them safe havens.

    Zapata spent much of the fall of traveling from one safe house to another in Guerrero, Puebla, and eastern Morelos, the area of his home state that had served as his base of operations for most of the year. The new legislature contained almost no members of the 22nd one, most of them having chosen not to run for reelection on the principle that reform meant an end to allowing the same group of men to hold continual power. It moved slowly on reform, failing to vote and undermining the progress that its predecessor had made. Rather than voting on the legislation proposed over the summer, the new legislature spent its time in debate about the possibility of reform, and the few times that reform measures did come to a vote, they were defeated.

    Quickly passing reforms into law would prevent their consequences from being properly studied, it was argued, and it was decided that social problems needed to be resolved over time or that chaos would result. The legislature then turned to what its members felt was the more pressing matter of suppressing rebellion, even though the Zapatista movement was in decline before it refused to enact any kind of reform.

    In October and November, it began pushing the central government to strengthen the garrisons in the region. Of course, the alarms were not completely inaccurate, especially during November and afterwards. As the push toward reform stopped, some of the peasantry again looked to Zapata for solutions, and recruits slowly returned to his army.

    The issue under discussion was financing, and Zapata and his chiefs arrived at a solution to the problem that would enable them to pay for their activities without relying on the villages, a practice that risked alienating their primary supporters. They would levy a tax on the hacendados; those who refused to pay would have their sugarcane fields burned. Many haciendas did refuse to pay the tax, and their fields were burned. Others paid it, providing much needed funds to the Zapatistas, and putting themselves under threat from government reprisals. Recruitment for the rebel forces continued to rise, in part because the haciendas on which fields had been burned could provide no work.

    Full-scale rebellion, however, would not resume immediately. The harvest, after all, had been good in , and many in the villages seemed content to wait and see whether their politicians would work out the issues that were slowing down land reform. Two political events suggested that such a wait-and-see attitude was appropriate. First, the swearing in of Patricio Leyva as the first post- Full-length formal portrait of Emiliano Zapata in military regalia.

    Leyva, after all, had been elected, not appointed, and had been, at least according to his campaign rhetoric, on the side of the peasants in Leyva, however, vetoed the bill, arguing that the legislature had overstepped its constitutional power, having no right to pass legislation that concerned communal property. A few days later, on December 13, a bill was introduced to reduce the taxes of those who had suffered financially, in other words the hacendados, during the Maderista uprising in That measure passed and was signed into law. The campesinos now lost any faith they had in the government, and they again turned to Zapata, the only figure willing to fight for their interests, and the rate of recruitment for the Zapatistas rapidly increased.

    That city was protected by the power of the central government, which despite its own problems in imposing itself on Mexico as a whole, was concerned enough with the problem of Zapatismo to defend its allies in Morelos. Some sources—for example, Philip S. John H. McNeely, by contrast, suggests the command structure was in place for the signing of the Plan de Ayala, though the number of colonels was 17 when that happened. Quoted Womack, Zapata and the Mexican Revolution, Quoted in McLynn, Villa and Zapata, Quoted in Rosa E. Despite the increase in recruitment, Harry H. McBride, , Rebellion also broke out in the north, particularly in Chihuahua.

    That revolt forced Orozco to break fully with Madero, who was at that stage offering Orozco the governorship of Chihuahua. They gave him the option of joining them or losing their trust, which would have hindered his ability to rebel later on. He was wounded on the battlefield almost as soon as he arrived in Chihuahua and ordered to retreat by Madero. Shortly thereafter, he committed suicide. Madero, much against his better judgment but at the insistence of his cabinet, was obliged to recall General Huerta from retirement, who returned to duty on March 12, The bigger issue for Madero, although he could not completely know it at the time, was Huerta.

    In the summer of , the general was an asset to the government. On September 12, he fled to the United States, where he tried unsuccessfully to keep his forces together from afar. But there were problems with putting so much faith in Huerta. He and Madero disliked each other. Madero had good reason to be concerned. Indeed, Madero treated the news as a fiction, particularly because Huerta was described as a possible participant rather than as the leader. Madero did not believe Huerta would take any role other than the principal one.

    Huerta held back his support because the position that he was offered was below that of the president, which Reyes was to become on an interim basis. Huerta only got on board once the shooting began, although exactly when he altered his position is a matter of speculation.

    He was met by gunfire and killed. But it soon became apparent to close observers that the opposing forces were avoiding engaging one another as much as possible, firing only at less strategic enemy targets—although Huerta is said to have order those most loyal to Madero to go on suicide missions.

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    Over the next 24 hours, Huerta had both Madero and his brother arrested. Gustavo was killed soon afterward. Huerta was sworn into office on February When the automobiles had traversed about two-thirds of the way to the penitentiary, however, they were attacked by an armed group, and the escorts descended from the machines to offer resistance. Suddenly the group grew larger, and the prisoners tried to escape. An exchange of shots then took place, in which two of the attacking party were killed and two wounded.

    Both prisoners were killed. The automobiles were badly damaged. The Government promises that society shall be fully satisfied as to the facts in the case. The commanders of the escort are now under arrest, and the facts above recorded have been ascertained so as to clear up this unhappy event, however incomprehensible it may be under the present sad circumstances. Historians assume that Huerta had Madero killed, as the new president had the most to gain from getting rid of the man he overthrew.

    Unity was what the new government set out to achieve. Zapata was intent on seizing on the opportunity that had been handed to him. He was approached by a number of envoys, the most significant of which seems to have been the father of Orozco. Orozco, Sr. The demand was a trick, and Zapata ordered his troops to attack the federales as they withdrew. Leyva, for example, resigned as governor, taking a safer position as a member of the state legislature. Instead of shooting him, Zapata held him prisoner until someone was needed for a diplomatic mission in San Antonio.

    His service as a prosecutor would consolidate his importance to Zapata.

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    The treason trials had served, in part, as hype. Zapata also condemned Orozco for surrendering the principles for which the peasantry had fought and died. Through these months, the fighting continued, and the now typical stalemate in which the federales controlled the major towns and the Zapatistas controlled the countryside was reestablished.

    The Zapatistas went on attacking the railways, but the federales slackened the pressure it put on them. Robles quickly reestablished a campaign along the lines of his previous one, but this time he took control not just of the military in the region but of the civil government as well. Hamilton Fyfe observed. Aguilar not only kept that promise but joined the Zapatistas, providing them with military expertise and useful contacts that enabled them to buy weapons from federales more concerned with turning a profit than with who won the war. Zapata went on to lay siege to Cuautla before April ended, and his forces subjected the Cuernavaca area to continual attacks in the first weeks of May.

    If they resist me, I shall hang them like earrings to the trees. The rural people, who were better acquainted with the region, were often able to hide when the federales showed up in their villages and return later on, when it was safe to do so. Left with no other option, they would then join the Zapatistas. He and his mother fled, hiding in the fields and woods, anywhere for safety, until they could find Emiliano Zapata, the protector and avenger.

    The boy was only fifteen at the time, but his father lay dead and his home was in ruins.

    The Zapatistas gave him a gun. Robles, they feared, would destroy them in the process of crushing the Zapatistas. Rebel leaders throughout the country, most importantly Pancho Villa, declared their allegiance to the Plan de Ayala. The support, while welcomed, raised the problem of managing a loose confederation of forces, the leaders of which were not in contact with each other or with Zapata.

    To alleviate the difficulty, Zapata issued a revised Plan de Ayala on May It declared Huerta a usurper, denounced Orozco as unworthy of the honor the previous version of the plan had bestowed upon him, and made Zapata the official chief of the movement. The revision was followed in June with instructions about the treatment of troops, who were to be paid or helped in other ways, and occupied villages. These instructions were not followed uniformly, and violence was committed against pacificos in villages, something Zapata had always denounced, even by Zapatistas in Morelos.

    He would soon assert that rebellion would be completely crushed by an attack on Huautla, where Zapata had set up a temporary headquarters, in August. Having advanced notice of the plans, which Robles had bragged about to the press, Zapata evacuated his forces from the area before the battle began. Robles, nonetheless, declared victory and was promoted to divisional general.

    The whole episode was a farce. The Zapatistas continued to control the countryside, and the federales were unable to do anything but hold onto the large towns that had been recaptured back in March, before Robles arrived. In June, Huerta was obliged to withdraw troops from the south to fight rebels in the north. Although Zapata was unable to defeat the federales where they were garrisoned, he did not sit still. In September, he moved his headquarters into northern Guerrero and began preparations for a major offensive in the hope of forcing Huerta to postpone the elections that he had promised to hold in October, elections that might risk giving legitimacy to the new government, which Huerta had promised not to lead.

    The position the rebels might attain if they could defeat a federal government that had been accepted by world leaders would be weakened.



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