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Old 01-09-2007   #21
pcmfr
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I was in Tiujuana/Baja over the weekend and Calderon's crackdown against the drug cartel was readily apparent. There were several military and Federales checkpoints along the main arteries out of the city and numerous trucks full of infantry moving throughout.
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Old 01-09-2007   #22
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Default It gets better

The drug smugglers dress like the Mexican Army. "231" documented incursions into US territory by Mexican army and law enforcement.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11226144/
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Old 01-11-2007   #23
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El Universal, 11 Jan 07: Army troops prepare for crackdown

ACAPULCO, Mexico – More than 1,000 Mexican army troops amassed in this Pacific resort community and two other cities in the western state of Guerrero on Wednesday in preparation for the third widespread federal crackdown on drugs and crime ordered by President Felipe Calderon in less than two months in office.

The troops, on loan from three states in northern, southern and central Mexico, began arriving Tuesday night and were on standby in Acapulco; the state capital, Chilpancino; and the city of Iguala while military commanders were briefed on drug cartel and other criminal operations in the area, said a state official who confirmed the operation.

In contrast to a similar operation in the northern border city of Tijuana, however, military officials as yet have no plans to strip local police officers of their weapons during the upcoming offensive in Acapulco and other violence-plagued cities including the resort city of Zihuatanejo, the official said.
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Old 01-12-2007   #24
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http://www.lmtonline.com/site/news.c...d=569392&rfi=6

NUEVO LAREDO – Unknown attackers ambushed two officers in the Mexican Army Intelligence Service in the southwest part of the city, killing a captain and injuring a colonel, officials said Thursday.The attack occurred near 7 p.m. Wednesday night as the two Army officers were driving on the highway to the airport near its intersection with Avenida Dr. Mier.
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Old 04-18-2007   #25
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Default Small wars make youtube, how uber-trendy

Mexican Drug Cartels Leave a Bloody Trail on YouTube
Quote:
Bloody bodies -- slumped at steering wheels, stacked in pickup trucks, crumpled on sidewalks -- clog nearly every frame of the music video that shook Mexico's criminal underworld.

Posted on YouTube and countless Mexican Web sites last year, the video opens with blaring horns and accordions. Valentín Elizalde, a singer known as the "Golden Rooster," croons over images of an open-mouthed shooting victim. "I'm singing this song to all my enemies," he belts out.

Elizalde's narcocorrido, or drug trafficker's ballad, sparked what is believed to be an unprecedented cyberspace drug war. Chat rooms filled with accusations that he was promoting the Sinaloa cartel and mocking its rival, the Gulf cartel. Drug lords flooded the Internet with images of beheadings, execution-style shootings and torture.......

Last edited by Jedburgh; 01-29-2008 at 06:27 PM. Reason: Added link, edited content.
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Old 05-18-2007   #26
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Mexico confronts surging violence
Quote:
.....Officials said Thursday that Mexican army troops had joined the fight Wednesday after a powerful drug cartel sent the assailants into town.

Armed with assault rifles and riding in 10 to 15 vehicles, they pulled four lightly armed city police officers out of police cars and executed them in a roadside park.

The invasion of Cananea — a town that helped spark the 1910 Mexican Revolution when U.S. forces crossed the border to help put down a miners' strike — showed the brashness and power of Mexico's ruthless organized crime gangs.....

Last edited by Jedburgh; 01-29-2008 at 06:23 PM. Reason: Added link, edited content.
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Old 05-18-2007   #27
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Q: The situation in Mexico's border regions continues to get worse. What is currently happening inside Mexico's border regions looks like fourth generation warfare to me. Your thoughts? Where do you this going?

A: It’s going the same way as the rest of the world. Groups like the Zetas are fighting a war to make Mexico ungovernable. They are taking stuff right out of the Al Qaeda in Iraq handbook. Video Executions. Beheadings. Assassination. Weakening the state. It’s the same as Iraq but in Mexico.

Today, everyone is thinking about global platforms and the global economy. Nobody is beholden to a nation state anymore. The mindset has changed. Our needs-for cheap labor, cheap imports, illegal drugs--those needs will be met by the global marketplace. And its driving lawlessness. Things we do locally are having consequences globally.

http://blog.wired.com/defense/2007/0..._me_a_lit.html
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Old 05-18-2007   #28
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AdamG great posts. We (the US) haven't seen anything yet compared to what this could turn into. But it will be interesting.
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Old 05-21-2007   #29
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Default via email

Quote:
A Mexican cartel army's war within
Hit men known as the Zetas are aiming at their own as a power struggle spreads.
By Héctor Tobar,
LA Times
May 20, 2007


VERACRUZ, MEXICO — The two thoroughbreds sprinted down a country track, a few million dollars in the bettors' kitty and an old-fashioned camera waiting at the finish line.

When the race was over, as veterinarians guided the expensive equines back to their air-conditioned trailers, gamblers at the private track began to argue over the nose-to-nose conclusion. Among them were members of a band of hit men known as the Zetas, employees of the Gulf cartel of drug traffickers.

Let's just wait for the film to be developed, someone said.

Then, above the din, another voice rang out. "I've come to kill you!"

A new chapter was being added to the violent saga of Mexico's most notorious drug ring. More than a dozen people may have been killed in the gunfire that followed, an ambush in which the hit men appear to have attacked one another.
The whole article can be found here

Last edited by Steve Blair; 05-21-2007 at 09:01 PM. Reason: Copyright issue. Link added to online article.
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Old 07-11-2007   #30
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Default Attack on Mexico's Pipeline

Robb posted a comment about this attack on his website today. This is a very traditional insurgent attack, and behold, they're not Islamists, but good ole leftists. I have no idea what the return on investment was from this attack yet, and we probably never will get accurate figures, but it should be a few million dollars worth of bang for the buck. Not only is there lost production, damage to the pipeline that needs repaired, but a huge investment in deploying security forces in an attempt to secure the pipeline(s).

http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/americ...tml#cnnSTCText

Quote:
Mexico vows to increase pipeline security after blasts
Story Highlights
There were explosions at a natural gas pipeline early Tuesday

A leftist rebel group has claimed responsibility

No oil exports were affected by the blast, officials said
MEXICO CITY, Mexico (Reuters)-- Mexico said on Tuesday it would tighten security at strategic installations after a shadowy leftist rebel group claimed responsibility for a rash of fuel pipeline explosions.

The four blasts shut down pipelines supplying natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas, crude oil and gasoline to the domestic market.

But none of the blasts affected oil exports and no injuries were reported, according to state oil monopoly Pemex.
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Old 07-11-2007   #31
Merv Benson
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Default The Mexico pipeline blast

This could well be a leftest group, but I think they may have some new friends. When you consider Chavez's hostility toward Mexico and the US and his "strategic partnership" with Iran as well as bringing in the new central American leftists into that partnership, it is very possible that this is an indirect attack on the US energy supply by two countries who want to drive up the cost of oil. Iran has certainly used proxies in the past to achieve its objectives and I would not rule out its involvement at this time. Since the US is Pemex's best customer, I think it would be a mistake to rule out the involvement of Iran and Venezuela, especially on the funding end.
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Old 07-11-2007   #32
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Hi Merv,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merv Benson View Post
This could well be a leftest group, but I think they may have some new friends. .... Since the US is Pemex's best customer, I think it would be a mistake to rule out the involvement of Iran and Venezuela, especially on the funding end.
Hmmm, possible, but there is also the interesting note that there were no casualties. That is a little closer to the other types of popular leftist uprisings, eg the Zapatistas. The money may be filtering in, but I suspect that it is purely a marriage of convenience if it exists.

Marc
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Old 07-11-2007   #33
Bill Moore
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Default Possible but highly doubtful

Merv,

In today's world it is easy for numerous groups with different agendas to network and support each other where there are common points of interest, or a profit to be made. Unfortunately with our current myopic view of strategic threats to the U.S., if you're not an Islamist you just don't make the list, no matter how hard you try (sorry North Korea). So what do we do, we automatically draw illogical links to Islamists, so we can draw attention to a problem. I think our nation's leaders have led much of America into a dangerous group think dynamic, where we're all extremely paranoid, thus we see the evil hand of Al Qaeda or Iran everywhere. What makes it worse is in most cases it "could" always be true to some degree, so it is hard to disprove. Sort of like WMD in Iraq, or AQ ties to Iraq, prior to our 2003 launch of OIF. I remain amused why educated men (and women) cannot collectively think rationally.

I think a communist insurgency in Mexico (without any Islamist influence) is a threat to our national interests on a number of levels. If it spreads (others were relatively easily defeated/suppressed) it could lead to increased legal and illegal migration, humanitarian issues, a hostile, or least not friendly gov on our southern border, etc. It is way to soon to make any claims like this, because this movement could be a flash in the pan, but the point is we have to look at all potential threats to U.S. interests, not just Islamists (which I know wasn't your point).

Bill
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Old 07-12-2007   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Moore
...I have no idea what the return on investment was from this attack yet, and we probably never will get accurate figures, but it should be a few million dollars worth of bang for the buck. Not only is there lost production, damage to the pipeline that needs repaired, but a huge investment in deploying security forces in an attempt to secure the pipeline.....
Gas pipeline attack in Mexico forces factories to shut down
Quote:
....At least a dozen companies including Honda Motor Co., Kellogg Co.'s, The Hershey Co., Nissan Motor Co., and Grupo Modelo SA were forced to suspend or scale back operations because of the lack of natural gas, the daily newspaper Excelsior reported. They said they faced millions of dollars in losses.

Vitro SAB, a Mexican company that makes glass containers, said the shutdown of two plants would cost it about $800,000 a day. Vitro said in a statement that it was increasing production at other plants in Mexico to minimize effects on customers.

Total business losses were being estimated at more than 70 million pesos ($6.4 million) a day, Excelsior reported, citing unidentified sources. The association representing Mexican industry said Wednesday it was looking into the extent of the explosions' financial impact....
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Old 07-25-2007   #35
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Additional details in the 25 Jul 07 Miami Herald:

Mexican bombers also hit crude oil pipeline
Quote:
Saboteurs who blew up natural gas pipelines that shut down one of Mexico's main industrial regions earlier this month also crippled an important crude oil pipeline in an operation that indicated extensive knowledge of Mexico's energy infrastructure, U.S. officials said Tuesday.

Not only were oil and natural gas pipelines targeted, but the bombers also knew enough about energy installations to destroy the shutoff valves along several pipelines that allow for the wide national distribution of oil and natural gas....

...And the bombers knew which side of the valve they should strike, ensuring that crude oil didn't flow to a nearby refinery and that natural gas didn't flow to foreign and Mexican manufacturers in the central Bajio region....
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Old 07-26-2007   #36
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Here is the full-text translation of the bad guys' communique issued after the attack:
Quote:
To whom it may concern:

With this communiqué, our party is able to communicate with the media and our people in the state of Guanajuato regarding our political position concerning the PEMEX pipeline explosions.

We express our appreciation in advance for your attention.

To the people of Mexico.

To the people of Guanajuato.

To the national and international media.

To the non-governmental groups who defend human rights.

Brothers, sisters, comrades!

In the northern part of the country, nature has been very benevolent with us; in Cadereyta a lightning bolt struck a deposit belonging to PEMEX; here in Guanajuato, the old pipe lines have not been maintained; this compounding with a “puncture” made to extract gas caused a loss of pressure resulting in several explosions; 7 these events could be left alone, we could remain quiet, and continue listening to the absurdities offered by the authorities but, the people deserve to know the truth. This is the truth and our motives.

In compliance with the central committee of our party and with the commanders of our army, we put into play the following military action: The orders for a national campaign to scourge the interests of the oligarchy and of this illegitimate government have been put into motion.

Three squads (platoons) comprised of urban and rural units from the Francisco Javier Mina detachment counting on support from people’s militias from all over the state have carried out attacks with surgical precision by placing eight explosive charges into the PEMEX lines located in Celaya, Salamanca, Valle de Santiago, Guanajuato and into the cross section valve of Coroneo (Queretaro) all done simultaneously at one o’clock on the mornings of July 5 and 10.

We are letting our people know that the attacks/harassments will not cease until the governments of Felipe Calderon and Ulises Ruiz release our companions Edmundo Reyes Amaya, Raymundo Rivera Bravo, and Gabriel Alberto Cruz Sanchez, held – disappeared since May 25 in Oaxaca.

We are informing our central committee and our commanding general that all who follow this leadership are able and in combat position and awaiting your orders. We await orders!

For the immediate release of our companions!

For the release of all our detained – disappeared!
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Old 09-13-2007   #37
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ISN Security Watch, 13 Sep 07: Mexican Bombings Highlight Poor Intel
Quote:
Eleven bombs exploded in the early morning hours of 10 September, destroying gas pipelines operated by Mexican state-run energy company Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) in the state of Veracruz. Operations of hundreds of companies in at least 10 Mexican states are still offline, collectively costing the Mexican economy over US$200 million and leaving idle some 10,000 Mexican workers.

It is the third bomb attack in as many months orchestrated by the Popular Revolutionary Army (EPR), a guerrilla group many believed until 10 September to be little more than an under-funded gathering of peasants from Oaxaca.

Some facts have solidified. The EPR has the sophistication to cause significant damage to selected targets and will continue its campaign until demands are met. After the second bombing, which shut down Pemex operations in Guanajuato and Queretaro in July, this first theory was forwarded as a strong one. It is now considered a fact. Second, the Mexican intelligence system is not prepared to deal with this domestic threat.....
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Old 09-14-2007   #38
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...this 13 Sep 07 EIU Briefing talks to Bill's point about "return on investment" for those who carried out this most recent attack:

Pipeline Bombs: Mexico's Gas Infrastructure Comes Under Attack
Quote:
....The blasts forced some 20,000 people to flee their homes, and the disruption in domestic oil and gas supplies (exports reportedly were not affected) caused numerous businesses to shut down or reduce their operations. Business groups estimate losses of at least US$90m. Some 60% of the country’s steel industry production has been halted, and two major automotive plants are crippled. As many as 2,500 companies in 10 states are reported to have been affected.

Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) will millions of dollars per day in lost gas sales and will have to spend millions more to repair the damaged infrastructure. This comes at a time when Pemex is already under strain because of a decline in revenue and output from its aging oil fields. Pemex officials are aiming to repair the pipelines and get production back on line by September 17th. Yet Pemex’s financial constraints could prevent it from making the necessary investments in security at its installations. In fact, officials admit that they cannot fully protect the country’s extensive pipeline network and other infrastructure from future attacks.

Future losses for Pemex would not only hit domestic supplies, but also potentially export revenue as well as fiscal income. Tax payments made by Pemex account for some 40% of the federal government’s tax take.....
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Old 09-26-2007   #39
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NYT, 26 Sep 07: With Bombings, Mexican Rebels Escalate Their Fight
Quote:
....In all three attacks, the bombers filled fire extinguishers with a mixture of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil, then detonated them with plastic explosives wired to digital watches and batteries.

The power of the bombs and the logistical skill in setting them off at the same time took many top officials here by surprise. Before the blasts, the Popular Revolutionary Army was considered a moribund group that had peaked in 1996 and then splintered into several smaller groups....

....The Popular Revolutionary Army has deep roots in Oaxaca, having been founded there in 1994 when 14 small insurgent groups banded together. The core leadership came from an extremist Marxist organization known by the acronym Procup, the Spanish initials for the Clandestine Revolutionary Workers’ Party-Union of the People.....
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Old 09-26-2007   #40
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Obviously no way of knowing who - if anyone - gave them support or training but were I to guess I would go for FARC. A good geographical and ideological match. The quote below is an extract from an interview with a former UC-ELN fighter taken from the linked Human Rights Watch report.

Quote:
We had lessons in the use of explosives, and they gave us a manual on how to use them. Any type of cylinder can be used for the bombs........ we put in anfo [ammonium nitrate and fuel oil] explosive.
http://www.hrw.org/reports/2003/colombia0903/11.htm
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