The most revolutionary act a person can perform is to tell the truth.

Blinded by rage and impotence, the president of Guatemala and his troops in power have abandoned dissimulation to launch themselves – with all the legal arsenal in their hands – against the press in that country. There are no longer any loopholes in which to hide the fear that dominates them every time a denunciation of their brazen acts of corruption and abuse appears in the media. Protected by a business elite incapable of measuring the extent of their crimes, they persecute and harass members of the press just as they persecute dignified and courageous judges, magistrates and prosecutors who, despite intimidation and threats, have been able to investigate their crimes thoroughly.

The installation of a dictatorship in Guatemala is not a conspiracy theory. It is “a fait accompli”. The president, his allies in Congress, his acolytes in the Public Prosecutor’s Office and his accomplices in the courts and the Supreme Electoral Tribunal have put a stamp on the civil liberties and civil rights of a population that is paralysed and incapable of reacting. In the midst of this panorama, there are not many courageous people whose lucidity impels them to act head on, and among them, women and men dedicated to spreading the truth of the facts through their different communication platforms.

In his attempt to emulate the dictatorial fury of his Nicaraguan colleague, the Guatemalan president has stepped over the constitutional text, transforming the state into a den of thieves where money flows freely to ensure the strengthening of a corrupt pact that has the country heading towards becoming a living example of the moral bankruptcy of a nation. The manipulation of laws, the threat to those who try to tell the truth and the outright bribery of congressmen and judges do not speak of power, but of such cowardice as to lead them to swoop down – and without measuring the consequences – on anyone brave enough to oppose them.

All the rottenness of the public administration – with its crass submissiveness to the organised crime that caresses their pockets with its immense fortunes – is replicated on the streets and roads of this punished country, where thugs shoot their way into the hands of a population condemned to silence. The levels of impunity in the face of the criminality unleashed throughout Guatemala respond to a kind of pact whose goal is to place in office the person who will continue to toe the line and who, of course, avoids any attempt to bring the guilty before a justice system capable of acting transparently.

The persecution of the press – including the editorial work of columnists from different sectors and ideologies – demonstrates the weakness of these criminal structures anchored in the public authorities, but above all the contempt for the right of the population to be informed – in detail and truthfully – about the actions of their rulers. The violation of this right is clearly typified in the laws and in the Political Constitution of the Republic, the pages of which guarantee that which is being trampled on today: freedom of the press.

Taking away constitutional rights is a shot in the foot. Sooner or later, they will pay for it.