Journalists targeted in latest Mexico drug violence
A newspaper editor, a columnist, police officers, and bar patrons are among those killed in separate acts of violence this past week.
(Page 2 of 2)
Today, Mexico is the key to the Western Hemisphere's lucrative drug trade, the Atlanta Constitution Journal adds.Skip to next paragraph
Israeli general hints at another Gaza campaign
Unclaimed attack on Islamic school raises tension in Nigeria
See no evil? Activists doubt credibility of Arab League mission to Syria.
Arab League observers head to Syria's war-ravaged Homs
Christmas church bombings put global spotlight on 'Nigerian Taliban' (VIDEO)
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
Mexican distribution rings supply about 90 percent of the cocaine, 80 percent of the methamphetamine and half of the marijuana used in the United States, estimates Rodney G. Benson, the agent in charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration office in Atlanta. A huge proportion of the payload headed for the Atlantic seaboard, the Southeast and the Midwest flows through Atlanta's interstates, a federal report said this year.
Mexico's most-wanted man, Joaquin "Shorty" Guzman, head of the Pacific-coast Sinaloa cartel, has declared war on the local drug baron, Vicente Carrillo Fuentes, and sent his foot soldiers to drive out the Juarez cartel. The Gulf cartel based around the Gulf of Mexico coast has joined the fight.
The Sacramento Bee points out that the wave of violence has "put the country at the top of some of the most infamous lists in the world: the country with the most kidnappings, the most violent crimes, the most journalists killed in the Western Hemisphere."
The Sacramento Bee adds that a widespread crackdown has done little to stop the violence.
When President Felipe Calderón took office two years ago, he declared war on the drug cartels and made the fight against crime his No. 1 priority. He sent the army first to his home state of Michoacán, then to the states of Monterrey, Sinaloa and several cities along the US border. Virtually militarizing the country, however, has not brought about the expected results.
José Reveles, an investigative journalist with the Mexican newspaper El Financiero, claims the Calderón government has lost control of the situation. "The delinquents are organized, and the government is disorganized," he says. "Organized crime is challenging the government, and its only response is to react."
As the body count rises south of the border in the drug cartel war, businesses are also drained of their lifeblood.
Although the weakened economy has had an impact, many say the fear of violence in border cities is to blame. Tourism in cities like Tijuana and Rosarito is about 70 percent down since last year....
[The mayor of Rosarito, Hugo Torres] along with other Mexican mayors say usually the mainstream media does not report that violence in Baja, California is among drug dealers and not against tourists. The mayor said those who were killed in his city were either involved in the drug trade or had a criminal history.