He is the self-described spokesperson for the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), but considered by many one of its main leaders, since he is so prominent a figure. Famed for his black mask and surreal sense of humor, he arrived in the Chiapas in Mexico in 1984, white skinned, university educated and determined to lead a guerilla movement. On New Year’s Day 1994(the same day NAFTA was enacted) the EZLN launched a rebellion to demand indigenous rights and greater democracy, liberty, and justice. Though fighting gave way to negotiation within a week, and remains at this stage today, Marcos has won one victory after another over his foes in Mexico City. Marcos’ use of the Internet made him a global Robin Hood. The ski-masked Zapatista leader has appeared on such programs as “Sixty Minutes”, getting his message across in accented but highly articulate English.
Hidden in the smoke coming out of Marcos’ pipe are the letters “EZLN” which stands for “Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional” which translates to Zapatista Army of National Liberation. It’s a little tricky to see, but it’s there.