Tijuana: “No, it really is a great success!”

October 14, 2010

Mexican President Felipe Calderon visited Tijuana last week to proclaim a great victory in cleaning the city of drug cartel-related violence as brutal as that seen in any northern Mexican city.

Less than a week later, the hanged corpses and severed heads have returned:

A rash of decapitations and other gruesome killings have hit Tijuana since Mexican President Felipe Calderon visited the border city last week and called it a success in his drug war.

The most recent killing occurred just before midnight Tuesday when motorists found a decapitated body underneath a bridge on a road leading to the beachside neighborhood of Playas de Tijuana, according to a police report Wednesday.

Reporters at the scene saw a rope hanging from the bridge, suggesting the man had been hung from his feet but was too heavy and plunged into oncoming traffic.

The discovery came a day after two other beheaded bodies were found hanging from their feet in Tijuana.

Police said they were still conducting forensic tests on the body found Tuesday and had no immediate comment on the identity of the man or the circumstances of his death.

Earlier Tuesday, police found a human head inside a bag in another Tijuana neighborhood, but it did not belong to the body found underneath the bridge.

According to police reports, at least 16 people have been killed in the city since Sunday — a surge from the normal rate of about two homicides a day.

Calderon had come to Tijuana as part of a promotion for a two-week convention promoting the city as a place to do business. So, as part of their convention fun, the guests get to play “guess where the next corpse will be found.”

Helluva success story, there, Felipe.

To be fair, the Mexicans have made some progress in TJ, and the current round may be remnants of a smashed cartel striking back, or a new group moving in. Either way, the message to the Mexican government is clear: “We rule here. Not you.”

This is only going to get worse before it gets better.

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Falcon Lake killing: Ooops! Our bad!

October 14, 2010

David Hartley and his wife Tiffany were sightseeing on Falcon Lake on the Mexican Border near McAllen, Texas, taking photos of the abandoned, flooded town of Old Guerrero. The young couple was enjoying a happy day on the lake, as allowed under Article 18 of the Water Treaty of 1944.

Then the happy day turned into a nightmare.

David and Tiffany were ambushed at Old Guerrero by members of the Zeta cartel. They fled on their jet skis, pursued by “pirates” firing automatic weapons at them. David was hit in the head and killed. Tiffany tried to recover his body, but the Zetas kept shooting and she had to leave him to save her own life. To this day, David’s body has not been recovered, the killers have not been arrested, and the lead Mexican investigator into the case was beheaded.

But, let’s not get too upset. You see, the head of the Zetas, Miguel Treviño, feels really bad about what happened, because it was all a case of mistaken identity:

A global intelligence company Wednesday said the death of U.S. citizen David Michael Hartley on Falcon Lake was a case of mistaken identity in a turf war between rival drug cartels.

Hartley, who was shot during a Sept. 30 sightseeing trip to the Mexican side of the binational reservoir, was shot by Zeta cartel enforcers because he was mistaken for a spy of the rival Gulf Cartel, according to the report by STRATFOR, and Austin-based think tank specializing in intelligence and international issues.

The report goes on to say Hartley’s body likely was destroyed as Los Zetas went into “damage control” mode and that the lower-level operatives responsible for the unauthorized strike against him now are on the Zetas’ hit list.

“The cartel boss — Miguel Treviño — is highly upset over the fact that these individuals shot and killed Mr. Hartley and it’s our understanding that the cartel boss is hunting for the killers of Mr. Hartley so he can take care of them himself,” said Fred Burton, STRATFOR’s vice president of intelligence.

Oh, well, that makes all the difference in the world, doesn’t it? It was just a couple of mooks who screwed up the Zeta’s criminal and terrorist business; the Hartley’s were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Miguel himself will put things right. Don’t worry, he’ll handle it.

Except David Hartley is still dead and his wife has no body to bury.

Screw you, Treviño. Screw you and all the Zetas. If it weren’t for you and your evil, this would never have happened; you are just as responsible as the idiots you hired. You are ruining lives on both sides of the border and you are no better than the barbarians we’re fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

And just like them, you deserve to die.

Addendum: An Open Letter To President Barack Obama

Dear Mr. President,

Under Article 18 of the Water Treaty of 1944 between Mexico and the United States, American citizens have the right to use both shores of the lake freely:

Public use of the water surface of lakes formed by international dams shall, when not harmful to the services rendered by such dams, be free and common to both countries, subject to the police regulations of each country in its territory, to such general regulations as may appropriately be prescribed and enforced by the Commission with the approval of the two Governments for the purpose of the application of the provisions of this Treaty, and to such regulations as may appropriately be prescribed and enforced for the same purpose by each Section of the Commission with respect to the areas and borders of such parts of those lakes as lie within its territory.  Neither Government shall use for military purposes such water surface situated within the territory of the other country except by express agreement between the two Governments.

I submit to you, sir, that, either through complicity or impotence, the Mexican government is unable or unwilling guarantee “free and common” use of its side of Falcon Lake, as it is obliged to do under the cited article. It is therefore your obligation as President of the United States to guarantee the safety of American citizens enjoying lawful use of the lake. This is not Texas’ responsibility; this is an international treaty entered into by the United States as a whole, and it your responsibility to see that its terms are met.

With respect, I request that you take steps to establish a Coast Guard station on Falcon Lake with sufficient personnel and arms to patrol the American side of the lake and come to the aid of anyone in distress who is enjoying its lawful use.

Thank you.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)