Patterico's Pontifications


Violence Continues in Mexico

Filed under: International — DRJ @ 5:28 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

StrategyPage notes that violence in Mexico is now worse than in Iraq. I agree with Glenn Reynolds that this is bad news for Mexico and its neighbors. Sadly, it’s also bad news for its neighbor’s anti-kidnapping experts, one of whom has been abducted in Mexico:

“A U.S. anti-kidnapping expert was abducted by gunmen in northern Mexico last week, a sign of just how bold this nation’s kidnapping gangs have become.

U.S. security consultant Felix Batista was in Saltillo in Coahuila state to offer advice on how to confront abductions for ransom when he was snatched by unknown assailants on Dec. 10, said Charlie LeBlanc, the president of the Houston, Texas-based security firm ASI Global LLC., where Batista is a consultant.
LeBlanc said Batista had his own security business and that “he was in Mexico for business that wasn’t associated with our company.” Batista’s work involved crisis management consulting, LeBlanc said. “Part of that could be or may involve negotiations with kidnappers.” ASI Global’s Web site advertises “kidnap and ransom response” and says the company has worked for major insurance companies.”

You know things are bad when real life starts imitating the movies:

“Kidnapping has become a rising problem in Mexico, but attacks on U.S. anti-crime consultants have largely been the stuff of movies. The seizure seems to echo the plot of a 2004 movie, “Man on Fire,” in which Denzel Washington played a U.S. security consultant who takes on Mexican kidnappers and is abducted himself.

A series of high-profile kidnappings in which the victims were later found dead has sparked outrage in Mexico. In the past year, the bodies of daughter of the country’s former sports commissioner and the son of a prominent businessman have been found.”

Out-of-control kidnapping is one reason some Mexican leaders now support reinstatement of the death penalty where a hostage is killed.

UPDATE — The violence continues: Four separate and possibly coordinated attacks killed 4 police officers in Juarez Sunday night. Many more officers have been intimated into quitting:

“Dozens of Ciudad Juárez police have been killed this year in attacks blamed on drug gangs trying to consolidate territory. Many officers have quit out of fear for their lives, often after their names have appeared on hit lists left in public.

Another such list naming 26 officers was found early Monday at a dog racing track, Torres said. It was found above the bodies of four civilian men gunned down at the track – one of them wearing a Santa Claus hat. A fifth man who survived was left bound and gagged next to the bodies.”

This report says more than 5,300 people have been killed in Mexico this year, more than twice as many as last year.


7 Responses to “Violence Continues in Mexico”

  1. I updated the post with a report on this weekend’s violence in Juarez, where 1,300 people have been killed this year in a city of 1.3 million.

    DRJ (b4db3a)

  2. Patterico wonders if it’s worth the time to do original reporting, considering the lack of interest from people far from the scene. (in the Pellicano case)

    This news is even further from home for most of us, and yet it ought to strike home. This outrageous expansion of injustice, the groundswell of corruption and violence cannot be contained in Mexico. It will quickly spill over the border. After all, our border with Mexico is only a line on a map and little more.

    It calls to mind the scenes in Gotham City in the Batman movies, as “each man does what is right in his own eyes.”


    Gesundheit (9ca635)

  3. Out-of-control kidnapping is one reason some Mexican leaders now support reinstatement of the death penalty where a hostage is killed.

    The people of Mexico (or at least a large majority of them), when trying to find the major culprit behind the debacle that is their nation, have to look no farther than the mirror. After all, they’ve allowed the politics of their society to be mired in primarily leftist sentiment for a few generations, symbolized by the foolishness of their Supreme Court’s decision several years ago that deemed life in prison without parole (not capital punishment, mind you) was inhumane and against Mexico’s constitution.

    Mexico is merely a bigger version of the politics and culture — if not also interminably stunted economics — that’s pervasive in much of inner-city America.

    Mark (411533)

  4. When you take into account Mexico’s state, the level of corruption and loss of coherency, the short term assessments are woefully inadequate to say the least. Downright wrong to be more honest.

    Mexico is in the middle of a civil war. A low intensity civil war now, but one that will intensify. And one that will drag the United States in. Only this time there will be no one in charge in Mexico to call back the hounds, as happened in the Mexican Revolution in response to Pershing’s Expedition.

    There will be a few years of low level attacks on American scum; much as there are now low level attacks on Mexican scum. But as such things so often do, the fighting will escalate to the point innocents are caught up in it, and civilians start to do. Warlords will rise, and government authority will crumble.

    When American authorities, law enforcement and military personnel, come under attack and casualties are taken, that is when it becomes a matter of war. This, very likely, at a time when the U.S. is engaged in war with Putinist Russia and heavily involved with rebuilding occupied Syria, Iran, and Pakistan.

    To go way out on a limb, the Second Mexican War may see (Asian) Indian and Iraqi troops serving in Mexico as our allies.

    The pus is seeping through the cracks in the crown. So long as no one in Mexico City or Washington D.C. takes the initiative to drain the boil, it will burst and the infection will spread. That means more will die than need to, and the long range consequences will be very bad.

    We will it or no war is coming, and the true birth of the 21st century will be a bloody one.

    Alan Kellogg (e4d258)

  5. Comment by Alan Kellogg — 12/15/2008 @ 10:59 pm

    A dark, and not entirely implausible, future.
    But, the question that arises is, what will we do about Mexico upon a victory there (again)?
    Will we allow the Mexicans to inaugurate another series of failed governments as happened in 1848,
    and 1911, and 1928?
    Or, will we do what probably should have been done then, and absorb Mexico into the United States?
    Since “exit strategies” seem to be the hot topic on almost every National Security issue,
    now would be the time to start to discuss the ramifications of the several possible scenarios that might be presented to us.

    Another Drew (64fe9d)

  6. Strange: no comments yet about the “drug war” causing all the violence.

    Aaron (80bd67)

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