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

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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