Drugs, Murder and Mexico

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i got in a big argt once with a friend about drug legalization, my points being basically that making something illegal doesn't erase demand, so the "business model" of suppliers necessarily involves violence; and that our strategy for the past 50-odd years has to be considered a failure, so why not try something else that seems to have worked ok in other places.

the counter-argument was basically "you watch the wire"

goole, Friday, 27 August 2010 20:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

GBX just asked me to post this link. I actually had it open already in another tab. It's insane:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Female_homicides_in_Ciudad_Ju%C3%A1rez

o sh!t a ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ (ENBB), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:54 (4 years ago) Permalink

In September 2009, 18 patients at a drug rehabilitation clinic called El Aliviane were massacred in a turf battle.

What does this even mean? OOH it makes it sound like the turf battle just happened to take place on the property of the clinic, OTOH "massacre" suggests deliberately killing the patients but doesn't sound like a "turf battle".

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:54 (4 years ago) Permalink

yeah that particular aspect of this is nuts, E.

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

i have several particularly sharp and otherwise decent friends who indulge in the odd bit of cocaine use, and what can you really say? saying stuff like this comes off as preachy and playing right into the hands of those who want to keep drugs illegal, one could argue. and yet...no.

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:56 (4 years ago) Permalink

The situation in Juarez nuts and ridiculous that more attention hasn't been paid to it. I think Jennifer Lopez made a movie about it a couple years ago called "Boderlands" iirc but I don't ever remember seeing it in theaters and suspect it went straight to video.

o sh!t a ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ (ENBB), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:57 (4 years ago) Permalink

what proportion of american drug consumption is "the odd bit of cocaine use" vs. crack addicts, who i don't feel comfortable blaming for any of this

the girl with the butt tattoo (harbl), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:58 (4 years ago) Permalink

have you read 2666 by roberto bolano? it takes place in a fictional version of juarez and this is one of the main threads the novel focuses on. it's really grim.

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 20:58 (4 years ago) Permalink

How does what's going on now compare to what went on in Colombia/Miami in the 80s? Because I seem to remember that what happened then was the result of a price spike which in turn was the result of an enforcement crackdown.

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:00 (4 years ago) Permalink

Omar - I have not but I will do. The whole thing fascinates me because it's just so unbelievable.

o sh!t a ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ (ENBB), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:01 (4 years ago) Permalink

This is all worth reading: http://www.theawl.com/author/john-murray

C0L1N B..., Friday, 27 August 2010 21:03 (4 years ago) Permalink

Last week in Ciudad Juarez, the Federal Police received an emergency call from a payphone explaining that a police officer had been shot and was lying wounded on the Avenue 16 de Septiembre, a street named for the day of Mexican independence from the Spanish. Several federal police officers and an emergency team of paramedics arrived to tend to the injured officer. A TV crew arrived on the scene around the same time. As the officers and doctors gathered around the body to assess the damage, nearby members of the Juarez cartel used a cell phone to detonate a bomb hidden in a parked car at the intersection. The blast killed two Federales, a doctor and an emergency technician, and left 9 other people wounded from shrapnel.

sheesh

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:06 (4 years ago) Permalink

has anyone read the charles bowden ciudad juarez books? they're on my list, as i've read all of his other books (down by the river is esp. good) but i haven't read them yet. i think he has two?

i've had many (too many to count) students whose lives have been affected by this shit.

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:07 (4 years ago) Permalink

No! Amanda can you email me some book recs? Or put them here? I'll get the one you mentioned. I've only read news articles on it but never any full books.

o sh!t a ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ (ENBB), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:09 (4 years ago) Permalink

have you read 2666 by roberto bolano? it takes place in a fictional version of juarez and this is one of the main threads the novel focuses on. it's really grim.

― ('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:58 (2 minutes ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

Those 200odd pages of detailed descriptions of murder victims was the most intense thing i've ever read.

Unfortunately I know little-to-nothing about the situation going on, so I don't really know what to say other than f this world

a hoy hoy, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:09 (4 years ago) Permalink

one woman did an entire semester's worth of speeches about growing up in a town where drug lords bought the bridges, paved the roads, rebuilt the schools, and imposed a strict 9pm curfew on everyone who lived there. violators of the curfew were all shot and killed.

here's one

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:10 (4 years ago) Permalink

one woman did an entire semester's worth of speeches about growing up in a town where drug lords bought the bridges, paved the roads, rebuilt the schools, and imposed a strict 9pm curfew on everyone who lived there. violators of the curfew were all shot and killed.

wow, Amanda

horseshoe, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:10 (4 years ago) Permalink

gonna go seek that book out, thanks LL

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:11 (4 years ago) Permalink

yeah, it was intense.

not about ciudad juarez, and a little dated, but really well written and interesting

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:13 (4 years ago) Permalink

glad this is finally a thread. it's astounding how little public attention this gets.

the counter-argument was basically "you watch the wire"

I felt like the wire could have done this better...haven't seen the episodes recently but I remember the drug-zone experienment worked *so* perfectly, was *so* successful that it was just sorta absurd.

iatee, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:14 (4 years ago) Permalink

How does what's going on now compare to what went on in Colombia/Miami in the 80s? Because I seem to remember that what happened then was the result of a price spike which in turn was the result of an enforcement crackdown.

I don't think the death tolls were anywhere in today's range

iatee, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:17 (4 years ago) Permalink

http://www.nybooks.com/blogs/nyrblog/2010/aug/12/quiet-shift-mexicos-drug-war/

It all started with something that is by now horrifyingly routine: a YouTube video of the gory execution of a Mexican policeman by a gang of narcotraficantes. Posted on July 22, it begins with the interrogation of the policeman, who was from the northern state of Durango, by masked gangsters employed, in this case, by one of Mexico’s most powerful trafficking groups, the Zetas. Such interrogations have been circulated on the Internet before, and, as here, they often end in death. However, in the course of this particular video the policeman stated that the director of a federal prison in Durango was in the habit of releasing and arming certain prisoners at night, so that they could commit murders aimed, broadly speaking, at the Zetas. The recent massacre of seventeen people attending a birthday party in the neighboring state of Coahuila was the work of these temporarily sprung assassins, the policeman said, as were two other mass killings earlier this year.

goole, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:17 (4 years ago) Permalink

eh, i think the scenes of hamsterdam at night were p horrific, also there was still murder and death (rip johnny). the open prostitution freaked me out more than the drugs though.

a hoy hoy, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:17 (4 years ago) Permalink

another student actually taught me about the zetas a few years ago. i had never heard of them, and she was from nuevo laredo, so she grew up around a LOT of drug-fueled violence.

this is a book bowden coauthored with an artist/architect? i would rather read the other one, but would like to see this one

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:18 (4 years ago) Permalink

my first experiences with learning about how the drug trade affects people beyond the users and sellers were when i was in colombia (bogota) in 1996, which is also the year that colombia was 'decertified' by the us in their cooperation in the "war on drugs"

what a farce that was

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:19 (4 years ago) Permalink

to answer harbl's q, i imagine casual, semi-regular, or recreational cocaine use makes up most of the use in this country, more than the use by addicts? i could be vv wrong. who knows about crack, though...

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

This was talked about all the time in the Las Cruces/El Paso area...I forget it's not on everyone else's radar. My brother who lived in Juarez for a couple years says this stuff is "overblown" but I think he was referring to some of the more seemingly hyperbolic ideas that were around like "and they will always make a necklace out of your dried nipples" and not the situation in general. Actually, I should ask what he meant by that at all, he was on a mission at the time & not even allowed to read the news.

sharkless dick stick (Abbbottt), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

gonna go seek that book out, thanks LL

― ('_') (omar little), Friday, August 27, 2010 5:11 PM (9 minutes ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

same - thank you

o sh!t a ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ (ENBB), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

it is hard to understand how anyone could read any of these stories and think this is 'overblown'. I mean, jeez, imagine if we found 72 bodies somewhere in america.

iatee, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:23 (4 years ago) Permalink

well it's just like this situation didn't really hit the national news heavy until those people from the embassy were killed

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:24 (4 years ago) Permalink

A lot of the violence in the city has been characterized by this kind of symbolism. Bodies have been dumped on many occasions in lots and playgrounds near schools, with children gathering around the crime scene to watch as police bag and remove the dead. Drug rehab clinics have been the scenes of mass murders. People are shot down in broad daylight during the normal hubub of everyday life, on main streets and in restaurants. Considering this, it's clear that what's happening isn't just a war between rival cartels, but a campaign of terror against the local population. The murdered groom's father conveyed perfectly the effect of this kind of violence to the El Paso Times: "I'm confused, frustrated and in despair. My wife, she is devastated." There really aren't any better emotions you could hope to inspire in a population you're trying to control.

[...]

A week before Easter, typewritten messages spread around Porvenir that anyone who hadn't left the area by Easter Sunday would be killed. Citizens packed up and left in droves. While no such large scale attack ever came, the assault on the social climate of the community was enough. Residents were threatened with death on the most holy day of the Catholic calendar. Like this week's wedding murders, the sanctuary of religion was directly challenged when the main church in town was burned to the ground on Good Friday.

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:25 (4 years ago) Permalink

I felt like the wire could have done this better...haven't seen the episodes recently but I remember the drug-zone experienment worked *so* perfectly, was *so* successful that it was just sorta absurd.

― iatee, Friday, August 27, 2010 5:14 PM Bookmark

Wait what? This is not what happened at all.

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:26 (4 years ago) Permalink

i was searching for a picture of Renssellaer Lee's White Labyrinth: Cocaine and Political Power, but all I found was this:

Surely things have been written since these books about cocaine and the Andean region in the 80s/90s, but those are the ones I'm most familiar with.

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:29 (4 years ago) Permalink

okay I remember it being a grimey area but basically just turning into some nice market economy where people didn't shoot each other

xp

iatee, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:31 (4 years ago) Permalink

smoke local pot. and leave everything else alone.

^^^this is how I roll. thankfully in the Bay Area local weed is abundant. always thought cocaine was morally indefensible for all kinds of reasons, the trade being one of them.

I drink your milksteak (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:34 (4 years ago) Permalink

One thing that fascinates me is how the cocaine industry, the heroin industry, and the meth industry are so different from each other. Marijuana is another story because it is a plant and doesn't require the heavy processing or chemical component that the other drugs require in order to be put onto the market. I agree wholeheartedly with Scott and Shakey in the "buy local weed, avoid everything else" philosophy.

No one asked, but Methland is a very readable book about how greedy companies, declining farmtowns, waning industry, and an influx of immigrant workers took its toll on the people (and law enforcement) of one Iowa town.

The writing is VERY annoying at times, but the book's content is interesting.

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:38 (4 years ago) Permalink

perhaps i'm incredibly naive but i would like to believe that IRL friends or ilxors i've seen who have bragged about using coke (and other drugs with morally indefensible industries producing them) on other threads might read stuff like this and decide to back off for those reasons.

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:39 (4 years ago) Permalink

yeah, don't do coke, ppl

goole, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:40 (4 years ago) Permalink

and listen i've seen people i *like* here who have mentioned it, like they do it occasionally, and it kinda breaks my heart y'all.

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:42 (4 years ago) Permalink

i feel more strongly about this than i do about meat, produce, diamonds, sweatshops, pretty much anything
i dumped a bf once for doing coke at a party in front of me and to this day i feel good about it
f u dude, knowing what you know
hope you had fun

by nature i am not a tyrant, but this stuff is so violent and pervasive and affects the lives of so many innocent people. it's just super fucked up.

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:45 (4 years ago) Permalink

otms

iatee, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:49 (4 years ago) Permalink

The friends I have who are most likely to use cocaine also seem most likely to be amoral about these kinds of things.

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:49 (4 years ago) Permalink

funny how that works

I drink your milksteak (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:51 (4 years ago) Permalink

there's no complexity here, like it's not 'should I boycott israeli companies because I think the government is evil?' - I mean you are literally funneling money to mass murderers

iatee, Friday, 27 August 2010 21:51 (4 years ago) Permalink

Exactly, you are directly paying terrible people to kill other people so that they can bring you the very thing for which you are paying.

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:52 (4 years ago) Permalink

this "hand-wringing" may elicit some eye-rolls but w/e

('_') (omar little), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

"Hi, I'd like a large pizza with anchovies, pepperoni, mushrooms, and please brutally kill any other pizza deliverymen you see, and their families, along the way"

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:56 (4 years ago) Permalink

"Well don't get all MORALISTIC with me!"

Ground Zero Mostel (Hurting 2), Friday, 27 August 2010 21:57 (4 years ago) Permalink

i have a lot of sympathy for addicts too, i get it, i just wish people would know how far the tentacles of the product they're buying/selling reach. it always goes further than most people think.

The Great Jumanji, (La Lechera), Friday, 27 August 2010 22:06 (4 years ago) Permalink

this has been all over the news lately. seems like people are finally starting to sort of understand/care about how the international drug trade has operated for the last bazumpteen years?

we slowly invented brains (La Lechera), Saturday, 1 March 2014 17:42 (7 months ago) Permalink

For a good primer, try this radio series. The text that accompanies the segment pretty much says it all
http://revealradio.org/tracing-chicagos-heroin-supply-chain/

Tracing Chicago’s heroin supply chain

Ever wondered how heavy narcotics such as heroin make it to America’s streets? Where it comes from, how it’s distributed and who it hurts?

That was the focus of a yearlong investigation by WBEZ and the Chicago Reader, which tracked the heroin supply chain from Mexico to Chicago and across the Midwest.

In our feature segment on “Reveal,” reporters Chip Mitchell and Natalie Moore explain the economics behind the heroin resurgence and paint a detailed picture of how the drugs end up in American communities.

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Sinaloa cartel is responsible for 70 to 80 percent of the narcotics moving through Chicago. On Feb. 22, its leader, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, was arrested in Mexico.

Explore the full series from WBEZ and the Chicago Reader here.

we slowly invented brains (La Lechera), Saturday, 1 March 2014 21:19 (7 months ago) Permalink

4 weeks pass...
5 months pass...

I don't know what to say about this other than it's awful and upsetting

https://news.vice.com/article/how-a-mexican-cartel-demolished-a-town-incinerated-hundreds-of-victims-and-got-away-with-it?utm_source=vicenewsfb

everyday sheeple (Michael B), Friday, 19 September 2014 17:29 (1 month ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/10/missing-mexico-students-mass-graves

Mass graves of protesting students, 26 police officers now in custody on suspicion of murder.

Wristy Hurlington (ShariVari), Friday, 10 October 2014 10:58 (1 week ago) Permalink

yeah i heard about that on the radio on my way to class, where i handed back a beautifully written student paper about her family ranch in guerrero.
horrible

cross over the mushroom circle (La Lechera), Friday, 10 October 2014 13:44 (1 week ago) Permalink


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