NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF FORMER BORDER PATROL OFFICERS
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Foreign News Report
The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO) extracts and condenses the material that follows from Mexican and Central and South American on-line media sources on a daily basis. You are free to disseminate this information, but we request that you credit NAFBPO as being the provider.
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El Informador (Guadalajara, Jalisco) 2/9/10
Ciudad Juarez: the naked truth about Mexico
[Portions of an op/col. by Norberto Alvarez Romo, titled as above]
Due to the last tragedies in Ciudad Juarez, its mayor asks that “the grave situation be faced with the same urgency as if a hurricane had gone through there.” It’s not about a sudden crisis brought about by an unexpected tornado. The recent events are only the drop that overflows the glass that has been “filling” for 30 years or more. Other cities can see themselves in the mirror of Juarez, as a window to the real future that awaits them if they ignore it.
More than 60% of Juarez residents weren’t born there. They came from the whole country searching for a life that they didn’t have at home, be it to cross to “the other side” [read: the U.S.] or to work in border assembly plants (“maquilas”), offering cheap labor costs for a globalized economy. Juarez grew with the apogee of the “maquilas” in the 80’s, especially with single, young female workers, manually dexterous and willing to accept lower salaries with extensive work hours.
Today, Juarez shows the country’s failed migration, and dreams turned into nightmares. There are tens of thousands of young people without work, without schooling, looking for something to do; thousands of abandoned houses, closed commercial establishments, vandalized properties.
Those that do work pay extortion money. Illegality reigns, vehicles without license plates, robberies, assaults, kidnappings. Even flirtatious street comments are moans from the devil. When they rob you in the street, they tell you that it’s a welcome to the city. On the other side of the river is one of the most peaceful and calm cities of the United States. It’s for good reason that any Juarez resident who is able to sleep there does so, including the Mayor.
Civil society tries to save itself by organizing, without being prepared to face its destiny. The city government abdicated on the issue of public security, and the situation has worsened from the time the national army came to be the city’s intermittent police (now yes, now no.) There is no joint command and direction among the city, state, federal and national forces. There’s talk about imposing martial law. Juarez is the naked truth about Mexico. A weak link that breaks the chain that we are.
El Sol de Mexico (Mexico City) 2/9/10
Mexican youth emigrates to the U.S.
In Mexico, 3.5 million youths don’t work in their profession due to the great unemployment index taking place in the country, and for that reason they are forced to emigrate to the United States to add to the numbers of informal commerce. So said Alberto Jimenez Merino, coordinator of federal deputies (congressmen) of the National Farmers Confederation, who underscored that those students who are able to find employment do not earn more than 150 pesos a day (One U.S. dollar = 13 Mex. pesos). Jimenez, ex-chancellor of the Univ. of Chapingo, added that teachers and researchers are the worst paid in the country.
Officialdom “forgets” people trafficking
In acknowledging that the “Law to Prevent and Sanction People Trafficking” has become a “dead letter,” Mexican Senator Irma Martinez Manriquez said that this “is painful to acknowledge.” She asserted that people trafficking is considered to be the third highest source of profit for organized crime, after drug traffic and weapons sales, netting an estimated 9.5 billion dollars. The senator said that Mexico is among the countries that send more people trafficking victims to the United States. The law cited was passed in 2007 and was published (read: became effective) in February of 2009. She also added that the worst feature surrounding this issue is impunity.
Diario de Yucatan (Merida, Yucatan) 2/9/10
Three human heads were found at Palmillas, near Escuinapa, in the southern part of the state of Sinaloa. The remains were left in front of a grade school and a restaurant. The bodies, however, have not been located. And in Ciudad Altamirano, state of Guerrero, someone left a human head inside an ice chest on a main street. Whoever did it also removed the facial flesh from the rest of this victim’s head.
According to the Mexico City newspaper “Reforma,” the state of Sinaloa (on the east side of the Gulf of Baja Calif.) had 767 homicides last year, while the state of Guerrero (where Acapulco is located) had 638, and the entire nation, 6,587.
El Heraldo (Tegucigalpa, Honduras) 2/9/10
More re “TPS”
The Honduran government is optimistic about obtaining an 18 month extension of the TPS (Temporary Protection Status; see M3 Report of 2/4/10) for the 75 thousand Hondurans presently in the U.S. and who are covered by that program. On Friday, the Honduran Chancellor, Mario Canahuati, said that a formal request will be made to the U.S. government this week, for what would be the ninth time extension of the TPS. The TPS to Hondurans was granted in 1999. The current coverage expires July 5.
La Prensa Grafica (San Salvador, El Salvador) 2/9/10
Violence in El Salvador
The death threats by gangsters against local and inter-city bus drivers in El Salvador has now caused the indefinite stoppage of bus service in some areas of the country. (Prior related reports have indicated that passenger busses are favorite and frequent targets of thugs, who rob passengers and extort payments of money from drivers and helpers, under penalty of death for refusing to comply.) Violence continues unabated in the country as a whole. During the first eight days of February, 123 Salvadorans were murdered.
El Diario (Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua), Excelsior (Mexico City) 2/9/10
Unavoidable Ciudad Juarez
This year’s latest account of homicides in Juarez brings the current total of victims there up to 266. Among them, a man who had disappeared on Jan. 11; his tortured, beaten and frozen body was found inside a refrigerator.
Critica (Hermosillo, Sonora) 2/9/10
Violence by the U.S. border and in Mexico’s interior
An “official source” reported that three soldiers and three civilians died on Feb. 8 in Reynosa, Tamaulipas, as a result of an armed confrontation. (Reynosa is just up from Matamoros, and across the lower Rio Grande River valley from McAllen, TX.) Four other soldiers were wounded and around a dozen individuals were arrested. The source added that a vehicle loaded with marihuana was seized, though no amount was mentioned. The Gulf Cartel, one of the most powerful and violent, operates in this area. It and other groups dominate the drug market in the country and clash for control of routes to send the drugs to the U.S.
In Acambaro, Guanajuato, two police commanders were shot to death with assault rifles during a highway ambush. This raises to four the number of police killed this week in that locale.
El Sur (Acapulco, Guerrero) 2/9/10
Almost routine item headlines in Guerrero
The first five items listed in the state of Guerrero news section all deal with assassinations, shootings, or finding victims of violence. (This, unfortunately, becomes routine and need not be detailed further.)
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