Ixil Mayan Genocide Essay

1049 Words3 Pages

Imagine yourself as an Ixil Mayan at the local marketplace. You wander around the stalls, viewing the hand-crafted goods. As the midday sun beats down on you, the sound of footsteps coming towards you becomes audible among the chatter of your fellow Mayans. Suddenly, the voices stop, and a gunshot echoes in the air. For what seems like an eternity, the marketplace is drowned in the slight whimpers of children as their mothers’ skirts muffle their moaning. You are still frozen in your place in front a stall. Then, a quick moment of common sense drives you to hide behind a wall. Before you know what is happening, the space around the market is filled with screams. A man falls down beside you with his eyes rolled back and a gaping wound in his chest. Blood trickles through the wall. The pleading cries of the women have a chilling effect. As more bodies fall down beside you, you suddenly become aware of an officer standing above you. A gun is pointed at you. Up until now, you didn’t think of running, but once the trigger is pulled, you know you don’t have a chance. Moments later, you are gone. The genocide that occurred in Guatemala tragically cost thousands of Ixil Mayan lives and ruined many others. It all began with Jose Efrain Rios Montt, the president/dictator of the time. Rios Montt was born on June 16, 1926, in the small town of Huehuetenango, Guatemala (The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica). In 1943, Rios Montt joined the Guatemalan army where he rose to the rank of a brigadier general (1). After serving as director of the Inter-American Defense College in Washington, D.C., in 1973, he returned to Guatemala and ran unsuccessfully for president as the candidate of the National Opposition Front (Frente Nacional de Oposición;... ... middle of paper ... ... stand. You give a sideways glance to the balding man in front of you. Jose Efrain Rios Montt. Oh, how you hate that man! After all, the things he has done to you, your brothers, and your sisters are unspeakable! You take a deep breath and begin to speak. You answer all the questions with a complete feeling of appreciation. Appreciation fueled by the fact that people want to hear your story. You tell them about the day the soldiers marched in to your village, murdered your people, and walked away as if nothing had happened. You tell them about the days of fear. People stare at you in amazement. You see their eyes gleaming with tears and—suddenly—you break down too. It’s all too much. The man that caused you pain is going to get punished! In the back of your mind, you are thinking that the Guatemalan genocide was a terrible tragedy that cost many people their lives.

In this essay, the author

  • Describes how the genocide that occurred in guatemala cost thousands of ixil mayan lives and ruined many others.
  • Explains that jose efrain rios montt, the president/dictator of the time, was born in huehuetenango, guatemala, where he rose to the rank of a brigadier general.
Show More

More about Ixil Mayan Genocide Essay

Open Document