September 24, 2007

All Quiet on the Southern Front

... gangland-style executions have surged, with the report counting 1,588 in the first half of 2007. For the full year of 2001, there were 1,080 such crimes, the report said.

Mexico's violence is often spectacular and lurid, with tales of street shootouts, decapitations and bomb blasts filling Mexico's news pages and airwaves. No place is immune, including the buildings of the country's news outlets.

In May a severed head wrapped in newspaper was left in a cooler outside the office of Tabasco Hoy in Villahermosa, where drug violence is on the rise. Grenades have been tossed into newsrooms from Cancun to Nuevo Laredo in the past 18 months. The Paris-based organization Reporters Without Borders reported that Mexico was the most dangerous country for journalists in 2006, after Iraq.

On May 14, suspected drug traffickers on motorcycles gunned down Jose Nemesio Lugo, a senior federal investigator in charge of gathering intelligence on drug traffickers, in Mexico City's upscale Coyoacan neighborhood. Two days later in Sonora state, about 20 miles south of Arizona, a five-hour shootout between heavily armed commandos and police left 20 people dead.

The bloodbath continued unabated this month, with the assassinations of two state police chiefs. The first was Jaime Flores of San Luis Potosi state, shot in the head multiple times in front of his wife on Sept. 13. Then on Wednesday came news that Marcos Manuel Souberville, the state police chief in Hidalgo, had fallen in a hail of bullets during an afternoon drive-by shooting.

Many prominent Mexicans have sought refuge in the United States, but that is no guarantee of safety. Mario Espinoza Lobato, a businessman and city councilman from Ciudad Acuna, was gunned down Wednesday at his home in neighboring Del Rio, Texas, authorities said. He was an outspoken critic of the criminal gangs that he said had tried to kidnap him.

Kidnapping is a multi-million dollar industry in Mexico. The report from Congress indicates there are about 4,500 kidnappings a year, about a third of which are reported. Greg Bangs, head of the kidnapping and ransom unit at the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies, said Mexico has rocketed past Colombia to become the world's ransom capital.

"Mexico is now very definitely No. 1 in the world in terms of the numbers of kidnappings,'' Bangs said. "Kidnappers are indicating how serous they are by sending parts of ears and noses and fingers and various bodily parts ... they didn't used to do that so much, but that seems to be more prevalent.''

Top officials here continue to insist their efforts are paying off even if the numbers don't show it. At a news conference last week, Medina, the attorney general, told reporters "there is a decrease" in organized crime murders.

But then Medina provided figures for "violent executions" in January and February — 175 and 208, respectively.

"They're going down?'' one reporter asked.

"I wish they were lower than last year,'' Medina responded. "But in the first months of this year there were more than in the same period last year.''

Congressman Juan Francisco Rivera, chairman of the Chamber of Deputies Committee on Security, expressed confidence in the government's crime-fighting campaign. He said pointedly that Americans should not be so quick to judge Mexico.

He described the country's violent crime wave as temporary, while in "cities like Detroit, Houston or Dallas, it has become a permanent thing.'' Rivera also called on U.S. authorities to do more to stop illicit firearms exports.

"That's what is killing us,'' Rivera said. "I think if look at the number of arrests, the number of drug seizures, the number of policemen who have risked their lives and who have been killed, I think it shows that our Army and local police forces are engaged in a frontal battle.'

My fellow Americans: One way you can help the good people of Mexico out is by not buying drugs. (It will also help the good people of American out, and yourself as well.)

By the way, Mexico also is being plagued by a Marxist terrorist-revolutionary group that has been blowing up petrochemical pipelines.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sailer writes:
"My fellow Americans: One way you can help the good people of Mexico out is by not buying drugs. (It will also help the good people of American out, and yourself as well.)"
Point taken. But what would help Mexicans (and American taxpayers) even more is if the U.S. government stopped its absurd "war on drugs" in Mexico, which helps create a black market which encourages gang activity. And while were at it, we could think about ending our anti-drug operations in Colombia too. And Peru. And the United States for that matter.

Φ said...

[Congressman Juan Francisco] Rivera also called on U.S. authorities to do more to stop illicit firearms exports.

Ironically, this is the flip side of those American politicians who, with no doubt the best of intentions, pretend that it is somehow Mexico's job to stem the tide of illegal aliens heading North.

Sorry, but I'm inclined to think that every nation is responsible for its own security: Mexico's to keep out guns, America's to keep out criminals.

And while we're at it, from Free Republic:

Gun control in Mexico is a fascinating case study. Mexican gun laws are simply draconian. No civilian may own a gun larger than .22 caliber, and a permit is required to buy one. All guns in Mexico are registered with the Ministry Of Defense. Guns may not be carried in public, either openly or concealed.

Mexico's murder rate is an eye-popping 17.5. Mexican authorities are fond of blaming the high murder rate on firearms smuggled across the border from the United States. Nonsense. The U.S. has many more personal guns than Mexico, yet our murder rate is far lower than Mexico's. It is Mexico's absurd gun laws that prevent law-abiding citizens from protecting themselves against illegally armed criminals.

Anonymous said...

Steve- that's the best anti-drug argument I've ever heard....I've done some drugs occasionally but no longer. Dan R

Anonymous said...

If family values don't stop at the boarder, does that mean drug gang violence and government corruption also won't stop at the boarder?

Anonymous said...

"By the way, Mexico also is being plagued by a Marxist terrorist-revolutionary group that has been blowing up petrochemical pipelines."

The term "Marxist" is your own characterization. The American media doesn't often use that term. A CNN web site search yields zero relevant results for the term.

I need to hear a good-looking TV host say it. Then I will believe it. You're getting ahead of yourself.

dave in boca said...

Heather Mac Donald says:
"To be sure, black incarceration rates are off the charts. Black men were 41 percent of the more than 2 million men in federal, state, and local prisons at midyear 2006. At the end of 2005, there were 3,145 prison inmates per 100,000 black males in the United States, compared with 1,244 inmates per 100,000 Hispanic males and 471 inmates per 100,000 white males."

I wonder if the IQ correlation would fit roughly along those lines. 85 for blacks... 90...Hispanics 100 for whites. There was a very good ABC Evening News piece about how the Black/White divide looks fifty years later in Little Rock Central high. Sort of what you expect... blacks predominate remedial, whites in AP courses and grades. Yet the principal, a white female, was weeping over society's being at fault...and, oh yeah, she mentioned something about reading not being promoted in black families.

tommy said...

Phi (or is that a Cyrillic 'f?'),

Ironically, this is the flip side of those American politicians who, with no doubt the best of intentions, pretend that it is somehow Mexico's job to stem the tide of illegal aliens heading North.

I think one difference is that the United States doesn't actively facilitate the smuggling of guns to Mexico. The same cannot be said about the Mexican government's aiding and abetting of illegals. Still, I get your point.

Anonymous said...

I am quite sure the mandarins of the North American Union will be able to solve the real problem plaguing Mexico, namely the gringo.

Got a problem with that? Press 1 for Spanish, 2 for French, 3 for Chinese.

Anonymous said...

"By the way, Mexico also is being plagued by a Marxist terrorist-revolutionary group that has been blowing up petrochemical pipelines."
You've got me curious now. What is this Mexican "Marxist terrorist-revolutionary group?" What do they call themselves? In what part of Mexico are they based? Why haven't you provided any more details?

Anonymous said...

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/homepage/story/19879.html
(...)
But the new findings come at a politically charged time for the Calderon administration, which is also confronting a new threat from an old foe — the shadowy Popular Revolutionary Army or EPR, its Spanish acronym.

EPR's coordinated bombings of natural gas pipelines, first in July and then in September, have exposed government intelligence failures and the vulnerability of the petroleum infrastructure in Mexico, the second largest oil exporter to the United States.

"The reality is the government has been pursuing the top EPR leaders for at least five years, and they haven't been able to catch them,'' said Mexican political commentator Raymundo Riva Palacio.

The attacks have been unexpectedly sophisticated. The September blasts caused millions of dollars in economic losses when the state-owned oil company, Pemex, had to cut off gas supplies to thousands of businesses, including major multi-national companies such as Grupo Modelo, the makers of Corona beer, and Vitro, the largest glassmaker in the world.

"These people that are placing these devices know something about the flow of the oil and gas,'' said one American official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to comment publicly. "They didn't just place it randomly in the middle of the valve system.''

Experts believe the EPR, a Marxist group that traces its origins to the armed guerilla movements of the 1970s, finances its activities with ransom from kidnapped businessmen. The guerillas say the attacks will continue until authorities release two comrades who disappeared in Oaxaca in May; state and federal officials say they're not in government custody.

The group's reach appears to be countrywide. The first blasts struck multiple locations in central Mexico. The second set hit coastal Veracruz. On Wednesday, security was beefed up around pipelines in northern Chihuahua state after EPR graffiti was discovered on installations there.
(...)

StephenT said...

Mexico's gun control laws are like all other Mexican laws. They are extensive, highly bureaucratic ... and totally ignored by the overwhelming mestizo population. The Spanish have tried for centuries to inculcate the concept of respect for written law in the Indo-Mexican culture and it has never taken. Mestizos don't "get" the whole idea of obedience to some law just because it's written in a book on a shelf somewhere. Now, a Federale in mirrored sunglasses with a sawed-off shotgun on his hip - THAT they understand as real law and defer and submit it to quite agreeably. But fancy 500-page ordinances replete with conditional enforcement and a threat of consequences in the dim, indefinite future if and only if the violator has the bad luck to get caught, well, those just don't register in the common mentality down there. Which, I contend, is a major factor in why Mexico persists in such a state of continual chaos and disorder.

I recall once coming upon a mestizo yard man preparing to tip over a 25-gallon drum of used motor oil and pour it down a storm drain on our block. In spanish, we pointed out to him the notice that the sewer drained directly to the ocean, incl. the ordinance number of the law prohibiting pouring waste down it, all of which was stenciled on top of the storm drain. He was quite cordial, but TOTALLY unable to understand why -- if there were no police in the immediate vicinity observing him -- there was any obligation whatsoever to comply with that law, merely because it was put in writing and posted there. As we attempted to reason with him, he kept gesturing around at our quiet, un-policed street and shrugging cheerfully as if to say, "What's the problem? Nobody's watching! Who cares?."

You can get Scandinavians to dutifully download and obey fifty-page .pdf documents that lay down the latest law about public dogwalking. But it won't work with mestizo Mexicans.

Anonymous said...

"The Spanish have tried for centuries to inculcate the concept of respect for written law in the Indo-Mexican culture and it has never taken."
"You can get Scandinavians to dutifully download and obey fifty-page .pdf documents that lay down the latest law about public dogwalking. But it won't work with mestizo Mexicans."
You think white Mexicans have respect for law? Tell that to the people ripped off by Carlos Salinas, Ernesto Zedillo, and Vicente Fox and their neo-capitalist cronies, the vast majority of them lily-white. Tell that to the bronze-skinned peasants of Chiapas and Oaxaca, who have been murdered by roving death squads in the command of white ranchers and white government officials (backed of course, by the predominantly white U.S. government, which is of course, controlled by predominantly white U.S. corporations). Who was it exactly, that rewrote the Mexican constitution after NAFTA was passed (by mostly white politicians in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico), without any pretense of legality, to allow the ejidos (communal farms, a staple of indigenous Mexican life, which had been protected on paper since the Mexican Revolution, and in practice to some extent since the land reforms of President Lazaro Cardenas in the 1930's), to be privatized and sold to wealthy (white) Mexican landowners and U.S.. (white) agribusiness corporations, forcing impoverished campesinos with beautiful bronze skin from their land and sending them up to el Norte to find jobs that your (white) ass complains they are "taking" from you? Who did that? Mestizos???

The worst thing about this is that the white, conquistador-descended ruling class of mexico MADE these laws, for their own benefit. Which means that the white Mexican bourgeoisie can't even follow its OWN laws. No one has less respect for law than Mexico's white bourgeois rulers, contrary to your racist assumptions.

Anonymous said...

Stephent said:
I recall once coming upon a mestizo yard man preparing to tip over a 25-gallon drum of used motor oil and pour it down a storm drain on our block. In spanish, we pointed out to him the notice that the sewer drained directly to the ocean, incl. the ordinance number of the law prohibiting pouring waste down it, all of which was stenciled on top of the storm drain. He was quite cordial, but TOTALLY unable to understand why -- if there were no police in the immediate vicinity observing him -- there was any obligation whatsoever to comply with that law, merely because it was put in writing and posted there. As we attempted to reason with him, he kept gesturing around at our quiet, un-policed street and shrugging cheerfully as if to say, "What's the problem? Nobody's watching! Who cares?."

And what do you think about the white-owned corporations that violate environmental laws more often and on a much grander scale than any poor Mestizo has? Is their behavior indicative of a general lack of respect for the rule of law among whites?

Anonymous said...

Absent foreign invasion every country gets the government it deserves. Spain conquered Mexico, but that was 500 years ago.

The white elite gets away with its crap because the mestizo majority allows it. In contrast, Spain today is a successful modern economy that takes in masses of Latin American immigrants.

Anonymous said...

"Absent foreign invasion every country gets the government it deserves. Spain conquered Mexico, but that was 500 years ago."
Yes, and not much has changed since then.
"The white elite gets away with its crap because the mestizo majority allows it."
You seem to be under the misconception that Mexico is a democracy. It isn't, and any fair look at the last presidential election will show that. And in any case, I guarantee you that the bronze masses won't be putting up with it for very much longer.

tommy said...

You seem to be under the misconception that Mexico is a democracy. It isn't, and any fair look at the last presidential election will show that.

You seem to be under the misconception that the natural form of government for mestizos is democracy. I see little evidence that mestizos are big on democracy. Like vast swaths of the Third World, mestizos love to talk about democracy. But like most other people in the Third World, democracy just means they expect their guy to win the next time around. They don't respect democracy's institutions but rather the outcome they predict it will produce. If their guy loses, they claim the democratic process has failed or has been subverted in some manner. Mestizos are big on populism and they tend to conflate populism with democracy. Huey Long would have been right at home in modern Latin America.

And in any case, I guarantee you that the bronze masses won't be putting up with it for very much longer.

I wouldn't make that guarantee if I were you. Most of the bronze masses seem only dimly aware that their white rulers aren't like them. The few who seem to really understand it are the whites themselves and they aren't telling. These same whites ensure that mestizos don't distinguish white Spaniards from mestizos but instead divide the world between La Raza and the gringos.