Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Susana Chavez had led protests through Ciudad Juarez against the unsolved killings of women in the border city. Her struggle and that of other activists was against the ‘femicides” of over 400 local female residents from 1993 to 2005 – most of the killings remain unsolved and were not related to the surging drug violence. Now she is one more of those brutally murdered in Mexico's drug wars. WHEN DOES IT END?


Mexico Drug War Update

by Bernd Debusmann, Jr.

Mexican drug trafficking organizations make billions each year smuggling drugs into the United States, profiting enormously from the prohibitionist drug policies of the US government. Since Mexican president Felipe Calderon took office in December 2006 and called the armed forces into the fight against the so-called cartels, prohibition-related violence has killed more than 30,000 people, including more than 13,000 last year. The increasing militarization of the drug war and the arrest of dozens of high-profile drug traffickers have failed to stem the flow of drugs -- or the violence -- whatsoever. The Merida initiative, which provides $1.4 billion over three years for the US to assist the Mexican government with training, equipment and intelligence, has so far failed to make a difference. Here are a few of the latest developments in Mexico's drug war:
Thursday,  January 6

In Ciudad Juarez, 
ten people were murdered across the city. At least two houses were burned down by heavily armed gunmen, including at least one in which they shot and killed a victim just before. In another incident, three people were shot dead.

In the nearby town of Guadalupe, at least one person was executed and several houses were burned down. The town has been without any sort of law enforcement or firefighters since the last police officer-a female-was kidnapped in December. She remains missing.
Friday,  January 7

In Coahuila, 
the body of the missing Zaragoza mayor was foundin neighboring Nuevo Leon. Mayor Saul Vera Ribera had been missing since Wednesday after taking a trip to the state capitol of Saltillo. He had apparently been shot in the head.
Saturday, January 8

In Acapulco, 
15 decapitated bodies were found on a sidewalk outside a shopping center. Two of the victims were 17 years old. A note left with the bodies suggests they were killed by members of the Sinaloa Cartel led by “El Chapo” Guzman.  Handwritten posters left at the scene suggested that those killed had been extortionists in the employ of another cartel.

In another part of the city, six bodies were found stuffed in a taxicab. At least two other people were killed in separate incidents in the city. Additionally, ten people were kidnapped from a nightclub, three of whom were found dead the next day.

In Mexico City, four men were killed in a drive-by shooting. It is unclear whether this incident is related to narcotics trafficking.

In Ciudad Juarez, 
at least ten people were killed. In one incident, police found three bound and gagged men executed in a vehicle near the highway. In another incident, two men were gunned down by gunmen wielding assault rifles.
Monday, January 10

In the Monterrey suburb of Guadalupe, 
the local police department ordered it’s officers to remain in their stations. A similar order was issued by the Transit Police. This comes in the wake of violence on Friday which claimed the lives of four police officers and wounded three others. Police in the neighboring towns of San Nicolas, Apodaca and San Pedro are continuing patrols, but only in heavily armed convoys.

In Nuevo Leon, 
a well-known Zeta commander was killed after being stabbed over 20 times in prison. Gabriel Ayala Romero was well-known for his involvement in distributing pirated goods, as well as drug trafficking and violence. He had been in prison since being captured by the army in June 2009.
Tuesday, January 11

In Ciudad Juarez,
it was revealed that the body of a woman found a few days previously was that of poet and social activist Susana Chavez. Susana had been outspoken in calling for justice in the countless unexplained femicides that have occurred in the city. Three men are in custody for the murder.
Total Body Count for the Year: 136

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