Dangerous Mexico 1

Dangerous Mexico 1 In this article which is a commentary on a news article from Breitbart.com’s new organization, I comment on the dangers of Mexico from the perspective of an American living in Mexico City for more than 30 years.

Most people don’t really understand just how dangerous Mexico really is. They may go to Mexico as a tourist, and basically not run into any problems, and everything is fine. But the truth of the matter is that Mexico is a dangerous place. In this blog I want to outline some of the dangerous areas of Mexico, and also I want to reflect on why Mexico is dangerous, the cultural elements that attribute to that danger. These things are appearing in the United States, and this is very alarming.

Note that I am not just “talking through my hat”. If you check these articles, you will see that worldwide, Mexico is recognized as being dangerous.

Breitbart News
Mexico Ranked Second Deadliest Country in the World

With 23,000 homicides in 2016, Mexico ranked as the second deadliest country in the world, the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) revealed in their Armed Conflict Survey. The report, published on Tuesday, highlighted the effect that drug cartels are having in Latin America….

2016 marked the second consecutive year that the number of conflict fatalities decreased around the world, CNN noted. Despite the decrease of 10,000 conflict fatalities from 2015 to 2016, Mexico’s homicide rate is accelerating:

As the Armed Conflict Survey shows, intentional homicides (in Mexico) jumped by 22.8% from 2015 to 2016. Violence continues to increase. The first two months of 2017 were the most violent January and February on record, with 3,779 homicide cases registered by the authorities. The following month was even worse: March 2017 saw 2,020 murders. This was the highest monthly tally since June 2011, a bloody moment in the midst of Mexico’s ‘war on drugs’. In December 2006, President Felipe Calderon deployed the armed forces to the streets with the mission of crushing the cartels. But the resulting conflict brought misery to Mexico: 105,000 people lost their lives in intentional homicides between that month and November 2012.

In a second news story on the same issue, the Mexico News Blog website has this article

MX second to Syria for deadly conflict: survey

Mexico recorded 23,000 homicides attributed to the ongoing drug war in 2016, making it the world’s second deadliest conflict zone only behind Syria, according to the annual Armed Conflict Survey released yesterday by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS)… Although the other countries that make up the top four — Syria (50,000 deaths in 2016), Iraq (17,000) and Afghanistan (16,000) — have received prominent coverage by international news media, Mexico has attracted much less attention… the combatants in the conflict — drug cartels — are not fighting for an overtly political purpose. Drug violence in Mexico is largely caused by territorial disputes between opposing cartels fighting to control lucrative smuggling routes into the United States…

Cartels also wage war against state military forces using their own military-grade weapons, paid for with untold riches —US $19-$29 billion annually according to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security — gained through transnational drug trafficking. Antonio Sampaio, research associate for security and development at survey author IISS, argues that the increase in drug-related violence is caused by militarization of cartels, “an arms race of sorts,” coupled with “the institutional weakness and pervasive corruption that have plagued the Mexican state.”  Cartels have become more aggressive in their tactics to intimidate locals, rival cartels and the state, all in the pursuit of one thing — territorial autonomy that gives them the freedom to conduct illicit activities such as cocaine smuggling and production of other illegal substances such as heroin and increasingly methamphetamine.

Where are the dangers in Mexico?

The main dangers in Mexico are the cartels and their activities. “Normal” people not involved in crime and drugs (production, selling, or use) are usually not caught up in this violence except if they are unfortunate enough to be “in the wrong place at the wrong time”. I have lived in Mexico for 30 years, and my old adage of good people go home and go to sleep at 9 or 10 PM, and the cockroaches come out at that time, so if you don’t want to get involved, go home and go to bed. That serves me right well.

But the entire culture is being “bent” by the cartels. This is simply because the Mexican culture is one of “Mañana” (procrastination) and “live and let live”. Mexicans are basically a non-confrontative type of people in general. They prefer to not “take the hard road” if they can put it off or do things some other way. This has condemned their culture to slide into the situation it is now in.

Some Articles from Breitbart.com about Mexico

Editor’s Note: The list of news articles can go on forever, so go to Breitbart.com and search. The point is that the drug lords are very dangerous, and they are very close to the US, operating with the US in actuality. Joe Biden has a really good relationship with the principal political figures in Mexico (Salinas de Gotari, Peña Nieto, etc) that support and get rich off of the drug cartels.

The problem is that when a government or people refuses to “do the hard thing”, and confronting Cartels is always going to be “the hard thing”, then the culture is going to adapt to include the corruption the cartel brings with it.

Let me explain a little about what a cartel really is. A cartel is simply a gang or mob that sets itself up to take advantage of the people, culture, government for its own advantages. Typically this in the generation of illicit money, a form of exploitation that is looked upon as illegal. To rob banks is illegal. This is the kind of thing that they do. Typically they do not use legal business establishments to gain their money, but some kind of unfair and underhanded way of making money. Note that cartels sell drugs, and the people who buy these drugs are people with serious life problems and are seeking ways to escape dealing with them and to forget about them.

This is seen exactly the same way in the casinos and betting establishments that have plagued America and other countries. Mexico has casinos, but they are not as popular as in the United States. No casino has a game that is fair. In the end analysis, those who bet almost always lose, and they lose a tremendous amount of money. This feeds their habit of betting to forget about their problems, and without an exception, betting never solves the lack of money problem but confounds and frustrates it even more. What happens when a fellow has a million-dollar need for his business, and he takes $100,000 and goes to Las Vegas to bet? He loses $70,000, and then wins $100,000. Does he take his winnings and go home? No. He continues to bet until he has lost it all. The lottery is another way unscrupulous people take advantage of the poverty of the poor.

Alcohol is another way unscrupulous people take advantage of people’s weaknesses to make themselves rich. In Mexico, a store will make 1 peso on a sale of 10 pesos bottle of coke. But for a beer, they would make 10 pesos on a sale of 20 pesos. So the margin of profit for alcohol is always much higher than soft drinks.

Cartels are made up of unscrupulous people who use any method they can find in order to squeeze money out of people. This is why the cartels get involved in many things that Americans cannot understand. They think they grow and sell drugs, and that is it. Did you know that in a lot of rural Mexico where regular crops are grown that the trucks carrying produce to market are stopped and they have to pay an amount per truck to get by? They block roads and do extortion on the passage of vehicles. Store trucks like Walmart, Sears, etc. also are attacked and robbed of their merchandise.

Cartels traffick in (smuggle) Humans

In recent years the cartels have gotten into human trafficking, and the people who smuggle illegals over the border are always the cartels. It used to be the “coyotes” (people dedicated to getting illegals across the border) would charge a couple of hundred dollars to show others where to cross and not get caught. A coyote could cross a group of 10 people in a night, charging $200 ahead, and make $2,000 in a night. But the cartels saw this as an opportunity to insert themselves, and now they control all of that. The cartels cross groups of 30-40, usually 2 groups a night, and charge them $2,500-$5,000 per person. So that comes out to $400,000 a night. Unlike smuggling drugs, once you get a half a million dollars of drugs into the US and across the border, you have to move it, distribute it, and eventually sell it. All that is risky, and with illegal smuggling, your money is sealed quickly.

You might be asking yourself, if these illegals are poor and have no money (ergo they are trying to get work in the US), then how do they pay such large amounts of money to the cartels? The typical process is that they make contact with a coyote and the coyote gets their information and puts them in a safe house near the border “waiting for the right time”. During the few days that they are there, the cartel has people that watch “society” for them all over the country. These people look for opportunities for the cartel to make money (and they get paid for information). Many work in the  Mexican post office and different banks in the country. With access to a person’s bank account, you can see how much money they actually have flowing through their fingers every month. Also some work for the government in public records.

But the important thing is that they verify all the family members that the person wanting to get into the US has given the cartel members. The cartels don’t charge them to cross the border. That comes later. Once they are in the US, then they are “free” to look for work anywhere they want to. Once their information is verified, the cartels have US immigration and border patrol agents that they have followed home, and offer them $50,000 if they will simply “look the other way”. The specific coyote gives the agent money and lots of money. He agrees, and they want for when “their guy” is at a border checkpoint (walking or driving through) and then they load up their people from the safe house, and they take them to that point where their guy is working. The coyote goes first, and the border agent knows to accept any ID the next 30 or 40 people that come through. They can show them library cards and they will pass through. The secondary checkpoint 50 miles into the US is more difficult to pass through.

Working in the US, the typical Mexican is not going to pay the cartel. So the cartel goes to his family members back in his hometown and cuts off his nephew’s finger as a warning. His family then gets in touch with him, and tells him to send the coyote his money, please! If not, then the family in Mexico has to sell their house or something to pay for what their family member has incurred as debts with the cartel.

Cartel Drug Smuggling

This is how things work, but also the cartel adds packages to the illegals backpacks when they cross, and these are drugs. Add to all this the fact that younger kids are sent and these end up in child slavery in places like New York and Los Angeles. From what I have seen most good-looking women are raped while in the safe house.

The point is that selling drugs or smuggling drugs is not the point of a cartel really. The point is to do anything that is “easy” or “unscrupulous” to pull in a big profit. They use society to make unfair profits. In the US casino, if it were really a “fair” way of providing a game for recreation, then probably 70% of the bets should win, and the house takes home a reasonable profit of 30%. But that is not how people with this mentality work. They want a 95% win for the house, and 5% for the customer.

Casinos like in Bullshead Arizona and Las Vegas have very cheap hotels and buffet meals. The winnings in the casino sponsor this as an attraction. It is to get people into their establishments, and almost always, people in these places have bet before and seen again a slot machine or roulette table, they will cave in and start betting again.

Cartels and Extortion and Kidnapping

The cartels have gotten into extortion and kidnapping because they are crooks, thugs, and they will take any advantage that they can. We have “express kidnapping” now in Mexico. They watch an outside ATM machine, come up behind some guy in a nice car that stops to get money, and they stick a gun in his back, take out all his daily limits, and leaves him. Most banks have gotten rid of outside ATM machines and they are now inside the bank, and they have security cameras on them from the parking lot. Elsewhere they are placed inside a Walmart or supermarket so that it is uncomfortable for them to do anything.

Businessmen and rich people are most often the targets of kidnapping, and this rarely turns out okay. Since they are murderers and thugs, once they get the ransom, they just kill the victim. He is a witness.

My experience with people who have been kidnapped and a few policemen that have confided in me is that the cartel sets up cells of people, one cell studies who to kidnap and makes sure they appear rich. A second cell actually steals bank and financial institution paper statements from their mail or checks their balances in those institutions. A third cell kidnaps the person, and a fourth one actually holds the person. A fifth one actually picks up the ransom money, and the cell that kidnapped them releases them somewhere. None of these people know who the others are. It is a lock him in a trunk of a car, and leave the car at such-and-such place.

When some friends that have a business had their 10-year-old boy kidnapped, the father said he didn’t have what they were asking for in ransom, and he could not get it. The kidnappers knew his exact balance in each of his bank accounts and his stock market holdings. What they were asking was more than all that, and they told him which of his brothers and sisters had money and told him to force them to give their holdings also or the kid was going to die.

Life under Cartels

To give you some idea, the local government continues to exist, but only to serve the interests of the cartels. In other words, they profess to serve the public, but everybody fears for their life. Any politician foolish enough to come out against the cartels is savagely killed. Those who do the cartels bidding are allowed to skim or gouge from public funds (kicking back part to the cartel of course).

The film “The Untouchables” was a good insight into Al Capone’s mob life (in my estimation). This is how life is under the cartels. Everything that really makes good money is penalized by extortion and eventually taken over by the mob (the cartel). What cartels really deal with is the power to abuse people. This is the only real dynamic that always defines them. Tomorrow they may be involved in making bread if there is a bread shortage, and the few people who still make bread are making good money. They will be there.

The underlying thought then is that the freedom to pursue life, liberty, and happiness is exactly what these people steal from you. What good does it do to work hard and make some money if you cannot spend the money nor even invest the money without these monsters trying to take it away from you? Exactly the point. These people are anti-Americans. They are against the very principles that define America.

We are local church missionaries in Mexico City working to get people saved and serving our Lord. Consider donating something to us to help with our work. See Cox Donations.

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