- Puerto Rican Independence Party
Infobox Political party
party_name = Partido Independentista Puertorriqueño
"PIP - Puerto Rican Independence Party "
colorcode = Green
Rubén Berríos Martínez(PIP President, Social Democrat and Honorary President of the Socialist International)
María De Lourdes Santiago, (PIP Vice-President and Senator at the Senate of Puerto Rico)
Juan Dalmau(General Secretary)
Manuel Rodríguez Orellana(Secretary of Relations with North America)
leader4_name = Fernando Martín (Executive President)
leader5_name = Víctor García San Inocencio (Representative at the House of Representatives of Puerto Rico).
October 20, 1946
ideology = National Liberation Movement,
Social liberalism, Social democracy, Pan-Latin Americanism
headquarters = San Juan,
website = Official Website: "www.independencia.net/ingles/welcome.html"
The Puerto Rican Independence Party (Spanish: "Partido Independentista Puertorriqueño", PIP) is a Puerto Rican political party that campaigns for the
independenceof Puerto Ricofrom the United States. [Berrios-Martinez, Ruben; “Puerto rico—Lithuania in Reverse?”; The Washington Post, Pg. A23; May 23, 1990.] It is one of the three main Political Parties in Puerto Rico and second oldest among all registered parties. [ The New York Times; Mar 18, 1949, pg. 13.] [ [http://www.ceepur.org/sobreCee/comisionados/PIP/index.htm Puerto Rico State Electoral Commission (CEE)] ]
Those who follow the PIP ideology are usually called "independentistas", "pipiolos", or sometimes just "pro-independence activists" in the
anglosphere. [Wallace, Carol J.; “Translating Laughter: Humor as a Special Challenge in Translating the Stories of Ana Lydia Vega”; The Journal of the Midwest Modern Language Association(MLA), Vol. 35, No. 2, Translating in and across Cultures (Autumn, 2002), pp. 75-87]
The party began as the electoral wing of the Puerto Rican pro-independence movement. It is the largest of the independence parties, and the only one that is on the ballot during elections (other candidates must be added in by hand).
The party was founded on
October 20, 1946by Gilberto Concepción de Gracia(deceased in 1968). He felt the independence movement had been "betrayed" by the Partido Popular Democrático, whose ultimate goal had originally been independence.
"Tremendous Destruction: Decades of FBI Surveillance and Persecution of Puerto Rican Groups"
In 2003, "The New York Times" reported the following about the
Federal Bureau of Investigation's public recognition of a directing "tremendously destructive" efforts against various organizatiosn, including the Puerto Rican Independence Party:
:"They include a 1961 directive from Mr. Hoover to seek information on 12 independence movement leaders, six of them operating in New York, "concerning their weaknesses, morals, criminal records, spouses, children, family life, educational qualifications and personal activities other than independence activities." The instructions were given under the domestic surveillance program known as Cointelpro, which aimed at aggressively monitoring antiwar, leftist and other groups in the United States and disrupting them.
:In the case of Puerto Rican independence groups, Mr. Hoover's 1961 memo refers to 'our efforts to disrupt their activities and compromise their effectiveness." Scholars say the papers provide invaluable additions to the recorded history of Puerto Rico. "I expect that this will alter somewhat the analysis of why independence hasn't made it,' said Felix V. Matos Rodriguez, director of the center at Hunter. 'In the 1940's, independence was the second-largest political movement in the island, (after support for commonwealth status), and a real alternative. But it was criminalized.'
:The existence of the F.B.I. papers came to light during a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing in 2000, when Representative Jose E. Serrano of New York questioned Louis J. Freeh, then F.B.I. director, on the issue. Mr. Freeh gave the first public acknowledgment of the federal government's Puerto Rican surveillance and offered a mea culpa.
:'Your question goes back to a period, particularly in the 1960's, when the F.B.I. did operate a program that did tremendous destruction to many people, to the country and certainly to the F.B.I.,' Mr. Freeh said, according to transcripts of the hearing. Mr. Freeh said that he would make the files available 'and see if we can redress some of the egregious illegal action, maybe criminal action, that occurred in the past'." [ [http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Caribbean/FBI_PuertoRicanGroups.html The New York Times; "Decades of FBI Surveillance of Puerto Rican Groups", by Mireya Navarro; November 23, 2003] ] .
The United States
Federal Bureau of Investigation's surveillance of any person or organization advocating Puerto Rico’s independence has been recognized by the FBI's top leadership. [ [http://www.eldiariony.com/noticias/detail.aspx?section=25&desc=Editorial&id=1794932 El Diario La Prensa; Editorial: "Constructing an Enemy"; January 17, 2008] ] .
The FBI’s past surveillance of the pro-independence movement is detailed in 1.8 million documents, a fraction of which were released in 2000. [ [http://www.pr-secretfiles.net/organizations_info.html?detail=8 FBI Files on the Puerto Rican Independence Party - case # SJ-100-4014 - Center for Puerto Rican Studies, Hunter College, City University of New York (CUNY)] ] [http://www.pr-secretfiles.net/index.html FBI Files on Organizations: Formerly secret, classifed files produced by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) from the 1930s to the 1990s documenting FBI surveillance and persecution activities targeting Puerto Rican organizations and individuals; CUNY.] ]
Then FBI Director
Louis Freehmade an unprecedented admission to the effects that the FBI had engaged in egregious and illegal action from the 1930s to the 1990s, quite possibly involving the FBI in widespread crimes and violation of constitutional rights against Puerto Ricans. [ [http://www.eldiariony.com/noticias/detail.aspx?section=25&desc=Editorial&id=1794932 El Diario La Prensa; Editorial: "Constructing an Enemy"; January 17, 2008] ]
In 1971, the PIP gubernatorial candidate,
Rubén Berríosled a protest against the U.S. Navyin Culebra. [ The New York Times, “Protesters on Culebra Scuffle With Marines”; pg. 13, January 19, 1971. At that time, he was found guilty of trespassing federal lands and incarcerated for three months at Fox River State Penitentiary ("see also:" Navy-Culebra protests).] [ Berrios Martinez, Ruben; “From a Puerto Rican Prison”; The New York Times, pg. 47, April 28, 1971.] During the 1972 elections the PIP showed the largest growth in its history while running a socialist, pro-worker, pro-poor campaign. One year later during a delegate assembly Rubén Berríos declared that the party was not presenting a Leninist-Marxist platform and took the matter to a the PIP’s assembly which voted in favor of the party’s current stance in favor of Social Democracy. The Marxist-leninist faction called the "terceristas" split into several groups the biggest of them went into the Movimiento Socialista Popular, while the rest went into the PSP.
In 1999, PIP leaders, especially
Rubén Berríos, became involved in the Navy-Vieques protestsstarted by many citizens of Vieques against the presence of the U.S. military in the island-municipality ("see also:" Cause of Vieques). [ [http://abcnews.go.com/International/story?id=83278&page=1 ABC News: "Dozens of Puerto Rican Protesters Arrested - Marshals Raid Activists’ Homes"; by Vilma Perez, July 3, 2000.] ]
During the 2004 elections, the PIP was in serious danger of losing official recognition, obtaining 2.4% of the gubernatorial vote and 10.5-25.5% of the legislative vote.
The party's historic leader,
Rubén Berríos, announced that if that happened, party leaders and its wide-periphery constituency would make sure that it would be quickly re-instated. True to his commitment, in less than two weeks after the election, the PIP's leadership and its membership obtained more than one-hundred and five thousand notarized signatures (105,000) from Puerto Rico's able voters. Popular island-wide support for the PIP’s legislative candidates hovered around 10%-25% and the PIP elected one Senator and one Representative (at the island-wide level) who are the respective spokepersons for the Puerto Rican Independence Party at the Puerto Rico Senateand the Puerto Rico House of Representatives. On a positive note, María De Lourdes Santiagomade history that year by becoming the first woman of the PIP to be elected to the Puerto Rico Senate. Victor Garcia San Inocencio, for his part, was re-elected for a third term at the Puerto Rico House of Representatives where he has served as a Representative and PIP Spokesperson since January 1997.
International support -
Gabriel García Márquezand others
The PIP cause receives ample moral support by international organizations and world-renowned figures. Examples of these are the
Socialist International(the largest organization of political parties in the world), including fifteen political parties which are in power in Latin America, and, also Cubaas well as the President of Panama, Martín Torrijos, as well as a wide group of world-recognized writers and artists. [ “Panama requests Latin America to support Puerto Rican independence”; Dominican Today; November 19, 2006 ] [ “Prominentes figuras de América Latina apoyan la independencia de Puerto Rico - Escritores y artistas declaran su adhesión a la Proclama de Panamá” www.independencia.net/topicos/panama/cpi_panama_nov06.html ]
On January 26, 2007,
Nobel Prizelaureate Gabriel García Márquezjoined other internationally renowned figures such as Mario Benedetti, Ernesto Sábato, Thiago de Mello, Eduardo Galeano, Carlos Monsiváis, Pablo Armando Fernández, Jorge Enrique Adoum, Pablo Milanés, Luis Rafael Sánchez, Mayra Monteroand Ana Lydia Vega, in supporting independence for Puerto Ricoand joining the Latin American and Caribbean Congress in Solidarity with Puerto Rico’s Independence, which approved a resolution favoring the island-nation's right to assert its independence, as ratified unanimously by political parties hailing from 22 countries in November 2006; García Márquez's push for the recognition of Puerto Rico's independence was obtained at the behest of the Puerto Rican Independence Party. His pledge for support to the Puerto Rican Independence Movementwas part of a wider effort that emerged from the Latin American and Caribbean Congress in Solidarity with Puerto Rico’s Independence.
PIP anti-war mobilization and protests
As reported in the
Canadianpress, for the past half-decade, the PIP's leadership and active members have participated in anti-war protests and mobilization to resist the war in Iraq and oppose the U.S. government's efforts to encourage Puerto Ricans to enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces: "The Puerto Rican Independence Party five years ago began distributing leaflets encouraging high school students to prevent military recruiters from obtaining their personal information. Last year, 57 per cent of this Caribbean island's high-school sophomores, junior and seniors signed the forms to keep their information from recruiters. [ [http://canadianpress.google.com/article/ALeqM5g-uy6z1XCHKtkNgF0BLjjVZ2KA4A "Anti-war activists target military recruiters in Puerto Rico"; September 29, 2007 - The Canadian Press] ]
PIP stance on Puerto Rico’s economic crisis and taxation system
During the 2005-2007 Puerto Rico economic crisis, the Puerto Rican Independence Party submitted various bills that would have taxed corporations making $1 million or more in annual net profits an extra ten percent, above from the actual taxation average these corporations pay, which hovers around 5%. Cruz, José A.; “Puerto Rico's crisis highlights its colonial status”; People's Weekly World. (National Edition). New York: Jun 17-Jun 23, 2006. Vol. 21, Iss. 3; pg. 7.] The PNP and the PPD parties amended the bill, taxing the corporations the traditional lower rate, while the general population was taxed at a ceiling of about 33.3% for income tax plus a 7.5% sales tax. Despite objections presented by the PIP, the PNP and PPD also allowed the companies to claim the additional tax as a credit on next year's bill, making the "tax," in effect, a one-year loan. Puerto Rico has been said "There is no place in the territorial limits of the United States that provides such an advantageous base for exporters. " because of this many US companies moved their headquarters and manufacturing facilities there this is why the PNP and PPD believed the tax increase would exacerbate the problems [ [http://www.offshore-manual.com/taxhavens/PuertoRico.html || Offshore Manual - We walk the walk, and talk the talk! || ] ]
To the PIP, the green color signifies hope of becoming free, and the white cross, the sacrifice and commitment of the party with democracy.
Nordic Cross" flag, or " Latin cross" flags are a common design in Scandinaviaand other parts of the world, and in theory, the PIP's emblem belongs to this family of flags. The PIP's flag is based on the first national flag ever flown by Puerto Ricans, and the current flag of the municipality of Lares. Lares hosted the first relatively successful attempt of revolutionary insurgency in Puerto Rico, the Grito de Lares, on Wednesday, September 23, 1868. The Lares flag is, on the other hand, similar to that of the Dominican Republic, since the Grito's mastermind, Ramon Emeterio Betances, not only admired the Dominican pro-independence struggle, but was also a descendant of Dominicans where he was admired as throughout most of Latin America. This nationalist uprising was the foundation for other uprisings to come in the future, such as the Grito de Yarain Cuba, the March 1st Movement/3·1 운동 in Korea.
Disfranchisement due to residence in Puerto Rico
United States citizens residing in the U.S. commonwealth of Puerto Rico are not counted in the U.S. Census and do not hold the right to vote in U.S. presidential elections. Although Puerto Rican residents elect a Resident Commissioner to the
United States House of Representatives, that official may not participate in votes determining the final passage of legislation. Furthermore, Puerto Rico holds no representation of any kind in the United States Senate.
Both the Puerto Rican Independence Party and the
New Progressive Partyofficially oppose the island's political status quo and consider Puerto Rico's lack of federal representation to be disfranchisement. The remaining political organization, the Popular Democratic Party, is less active in its opposition of this case of disfranchisement but has officially stated that it favors fixing the remaining "deficits of democracy" that the Bill Clintonand George W. BushAdministrations have publicly recognized in writing through Presidential Task Force Reports.
Many among the general public have associated the Independence parties, including the Partido Socialista Puertorriqueno with violent acts of terrorism such as those committed by "
Los Macheteros". However, the party has never acknowledged links to any attacks, insisting that it pursues independence through peaceful means. No proof has ever been found to corroborate these sporadic allegations. The PIP has participated in frequent congresses of international non-Marxist socialist parties corresponding to its supranational-affiliation, the Socialist International(SI). [ [http://www.pr-secretfiles.net/organizations_info.html?detail=8 City University of New York (CUNY): "This FBI file is case # SJ-100-4014 and is one the largest received so far. It contains 57 volumes and over 9,645 pages."] ]
Important party leaders
Rubén Berríos, Esq. - President, former Senator and Honorary President of the Socialist International(SI)
Manuel Rodríguez Orellana, Esq. - Secretary of Relations with North America
Fernando Martín, Esq. - Executive President, former Senator
María De Lourdes Santiago, Esq. - Vice-President and PIP Senator at the Senate of Puerto Rico
Juan Dalmau Ramírez, Esq. - Secretary General & Electoral Commissioner
Edwin Irizarry Mora, Ph.D. - Secretary of Economic Affairs
Roberto Iván Aponte- Secretary of Municipal Organization
Dr. Luis Roberto Piñero- President of the Pro-Independence Advocates' Campaign in favor of unifying both Houses of the Legislature into a single, unicameral Parliament
Victor García San Inocencio, Esq. - PIP Representative at the House of Representatives of Puerto Rico
* Jorge Fernandez Porto, M.S., Adviser on Environmental Sciences and Public Policy Affairs
* Jessica Martínez, Esq. - Member of Pro-Independence Advocates' Campaign in Favor of a single, unicameral colonial Parliament
Gilberto Concepción de Gracia- Founding President and respected Latin American Leader
Latin American and Caribbean Congress in Solidarity with Puerto Rico’s Independence
Puerto Rico political parties
Cause of Vieques
Maravilla Hill case
Politics of Puerto Rico
* Puerto Rican Independence Party (1998). Retrieved January 6, 2004 from "www.independencia.net/ingles/welcome.html"
* Official Website of the Puerto Rican Independence Party - www.independencia.net/ingles/welcome.html
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