- Rider(s):Salazar, Emiliano Zapata
(1879 –1919) was another leading figure in the Mexican Revolution, the main leader of the peasant revolution in the state of Morelos, and the founder of the agrarian movement called Zapatismo. Zapata participated early on in political movements against Diaz and the landowners, and when the Revolution broke out in 1910, he was positioned as a central leader of the peasant revolt in Morelos. Together with a number of other peasant leaders he formed the Liberation Army of the South of which he soon became the undisputed leader. Zapata’s forces contributed to the fall of Díaz, but when the revolutionary leader Madero became president he disavowed the role of the Zapatistas, denouncing them as simple bandits. Zapata called for substantial land reforms by redistribution of land to the peasants. Madero sent forces to root out the Zapatistas in Morelos, but Zapata defeated the forces of Madero and Huerta. When Huerta executed Madero and took control of the capital, a coalition of constitutionalist forces led by Carranza, Obregón and Villa ousted him with the support of Zapata’s troops. Carranza, also hostile to Zapata, constituted himself as the leader of Mexico, but Villa allied with Zapata against Carranza and Obregón. Zapata focused his energies on rebuilding society in Morelos, which he now controlled, instituting the land reforms. As Carranza consolidated his power and won over Villa, Zapata initiated guerrilla warfare against the ‘carrancistas’, who in turn invaded Morelos, employing once again scorched earth tactics to oust the Zapatista rebels. Zapata once again retook Morelos in 1917 and held most of the state against Carranza’s troops until he was killed in an ambush in 1919. After his death Zapatista generals aligned with Obregón against Carranza. They instituted many of the land reforms planned by Zapata in the state of Morelos.
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