Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

The compass in our hand

Tuesday, February 15, 2011 |













This past week was another very tragic week for Mexico.

Several more massacres, several children killed and dozens of women's lives were taken.

I've turned on the news or read the latest daily edition of this once secure, friendly and welcoming country we call Mexico, that we call home.

Who's only certainty is yet another day for an extortion, kidnapping or funeral. 

Sadly we only watch TV or read the newspaper just to make sure our loved ones have lived to survive another day.

Hoping that yesterdays tragic events have not touched another one of our loved ones, our friends or neighbor. 

Viktor Frankl wrote about how we must "hold" all humans even those who contribute to violence, fear and anger.

Because fundamentally everyone is seeking meaning and purpose.

At our core we all have a need both biologically and spiritually to be loved.

Somehow these people of the cartels never get the message.

They continue to tear at the very fiber of our essence as human beings.

I understand that we all have a varying degree of childhood experiences - some good and others not as good.

I understand that we are born with different capacities both mental and physiological.

Yet we all are born with an innate ability to care.

God given abilities that are amplified in one direction or the other by the experiences we were born to.

No one can undo the past or our sorrows.

Yet together we must impose a collaborative ideal as a member of society, family, community, a city and a country to work for a peaceful change and move forward.

It is vital for Mexico as a people - to invest in our highest potential.

We must widen our circles of concern as a community.

History tells us that if people are not embraced by conditions that support their best interest they are vulnerable to drift away..

If people are not encouraged to achieve their highest potential, they are vulnerable and will lose their way.

The on going fear, resentment and anger, ever present in Cd. Juarez and many cities across Mexico, has created a tempest like storm.

One that is unyielding and tears against everyone’s true nature, their best potential and purpose in life.

If we are ever regain our beloved country we must begin to act as one.

I believe that it begins immediately with securing our country.

Safe guarding our children.

Improving our educational opportunities.

Creating employment.

Working together with passion towards building the best Mexico we know how.

Our government and its leadership must begin to shift the prevailing trajectory of the violence, fear and desperation.

Together we hold the compass that can still direct us to a safe harbor.

A harbor within sight, though distant but one of hope and change and a brighter day.  

Hoping that all those lives that have been extinguished will not have lived in vain.

In due time their lessons will lead the way and open other doors for transformation for good.

Their voices now silent, will echo the directions to us and tell us what we need to do.

How to best invest in the highest potential in our fellow man, and our precious youth.

In the decaying communities they left behind.

Moreover, how best to widen our circles of concern.

We can each make a difference.

Today I thank the journalist, for it is through their blood that history is being allowed to seep out for others to know and understand.

I thank the incorruptible man and women on the street - the very core of our society.

I also thank the honest crime fighters, who put their lives on the line every moment of the day - many for less than $18.00 US a day.

I thank those dedicated men in Military attire, proud and patriotic, we know that there are thousands of you that want to see a different Mexico. 

I thank God, for giving us a new day and that our loved ones lived to see it as well.

I pray and hope that President Calderon leverages this new day and seizes its new opportunity to dismantle, imprison and eliminates each one of those cartels.

We all have the compass in our hands.

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27 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

WOW! At first I stopped reading this because it sounded a little too bleeding heart, on second read, I occurs to me that this passage applies way beyond Mexico's borders if not on a global scale. Thank you for making me THINK! and hopefully others will do the same, WELL DONE!

Pancho said...

A very poignant post Tomas - there is a spiritual dearth among the cartels that needs some serious explanation. Rarely has such frank brutality surfaced in contemporary times. What enables these men to so easily slaughter and mercilessly torture the innocent (see: http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=2b0_1294374689)??

These are the questions we should be asking but routinely avoid. I think its because the answers would illuminate a lot of ugly things about our society - uncomfortable truths about our priorities, goals, and values.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful. I think about Mexico constantly and hope for a brighter future not only because I am concerned about border issues but because the people of Mexico don't deserve to be forgotten.

Buela said...

Excellent reflection...Thank you so much. I admit to doing the same as the first poster I began reading and stopped, then went back after seeing his/hers comment.

this is my favorite part:

"Yet together we must impose a collaborative ideal as a member of society, family, community, a city and a country to work for a peaceful change and move forward.

It is vital for Mexico as a people - to invest in our highest potential.

We must widen our circles of concern as a community"

I will go one further...our concern for children should have no city limit, no state line, and no country border...

Anonymous said...

[QUOTE] I pray and hope that President Calderon leverages this new day and seizes its new opportunity to dismantle, imprison and eliminates each one of those cartels. [QUOTE]
this is probably utopistic...no government in the world can stop the "business". (it's anyway an individual issue and education about drug consumption). The question is, at my opinion, how will Mexico find out of this desaster of violence and disrespect of its own population.
let's hope and be optimists that they'll find a good compromise! Mexico is a great country and deserves better times!

Anonymous said...

I guess I'm more pissed off than you and the other respondees here are. As much as I enjoyed reading the hopeful piece you wrote and the message you're trying to convey here, I find myself asking the question whether compassionate words and abrazos del amor are what's really missing in the equation for a peaceful, productive society in Mexico?

The fabric of Mexico is family, and I don't know another society on earth where the bonds are tighter. There is love and compassion in abundance in Mexico. And it's not that hard to find.

I'm probably different from most people perhaps because I don't love my enemies. I hate those who are trying to destroy Mexican society both inside and out, killing children, mothers and fathers indiscriminately and leaving behind a generation of orphans. These scumbags and their bribed protectors in the Mexican govt are not wanting for for love, respect and compassion. They have made themselves rich and have blood on their hands directly or indirectly.

Every day I'm scared to death something awful is going to happen to people I love very much. How much longer do Mexicans have to wait for something as basic as law and order and equitable justice to be established in their country? Another decade? Two? I'm normally an optimist (living in the US), but the situation in Mexico looks hopeless from every angle right now. Even the guy with the biggest balls on the face of the planet, the guy prosecuting this war for Mexico's future, is a well-intentioned, closet alcoholic who woefully underestimated the power and pervasive structure of these cartels within the Mexican government and civil society. Calderon is asking for patience and for tolerance of more violence to come, but he has no conceivable strategy or tactics in force to win this thing. He needs more help.

EarniesWorld said...

Why haven't you guys posted the new video La Resistencia released?

Ernest1 said...

Tomas, that was a very personal and heart felt message but I think that when you wrap yourself in the Mexican flag alongside with you also hugging Calderon and the gringo-made, supposedly all Mexican National Security State so close and tightly to your body, that you're way off in the wrong direction with where you'll actually be hauled in. They're marching you down a dead end alley, Tomas.

'I pray and hope that President Calderon leverages this new day and seizes its new opportunity to dismantle, imprison and eliminates each one of those cartels.'

In a couple of years you will probably be praying FOR whom then??? the new PRI 'Prez' to run things 'successfully' supposedly for Mexico's people? You're simply not going to get either security or freedom from a government of PRI/PAN read Cartel de Golfo/ ZETA people... ALL allied with us imperial top dog thugs here in their US Empire DC/ North Virginia offices. That way lies more Mexican National Insecurity and not national independence and freedom.

The US government wanted you to have PAN in for these years, and look what Mexico actually got/// Not so nice...

Anonymous said...

Same ol' ernest. Do you ever have anything to post that is not negative, critical and/or CONDESCENDING? EVER?

Rhetorical questions are the weapon of a weak mind. They are useless and so are you. Not wise not analytical DEFINITELY NOT A PROBLEM-SOLVER and not friendly - useless. And to make sure it's boring you use the same cute phrases - "wrap yourself in the US/Mexican flag", "gringo-made", "marching you down a dead end/wrong path". You are the one who is most often way off.

If there is a point to this post please state it. You can't and won't but you will attack me for being too stupid to understand your pointless, 1950s rantings.

ernibot said...

yeah i thing ernest1 is some kind of spam bot or something,it is always the same old thing
talk about pavlov's dog yapyapyap

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% with Ernest.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Ernie is completely right. I'll be honest, I didnt like this article. All the love in the world isnt going to save mexico. How about some justice.

Anonymous said...

There is nothing mysterious going on here. We (humans) have been doing this (killing) forever and we always will. Where there is poverty, ignorance, and uneducated people there is this third world style violence and killing. A type of blood shed we (Americans) always associate with Africa and the middle east. This time it just happens to be closer to home. Yes it is sad. But this is a trivial human characteristic. It is also in part related to mexican culture. Chingones, Trocotas, Armas grandes, Mujeres exoticas, Dinero, huevos, Sangre, just listen to the narco corridos.

"me gusta la carne asada con sangre humana"

Anonymous said...

Callousness comes from ignorance. If you had experienced the loss (in our family's case we had two relatives near and dear to our hearts, in the past seven months, one for being unable to pay his weekly business quota and the other the dean of a university who was kidnapped, and his ransom paid.. MURDERED) - you might have a very different opinion. Still I am grateful that you will never feel the impotence, the anger, the despair and loss that thousands of us have these past three years. Dr. Tomas

Layla2 said...

I love your prose. Very poetic. I think that it reaches out to whatever left that is human in the bad guys as well as to those who still have a heart and mind to reject this violence and the reasons for it.

"Because fundamentally everyone is seeking meaning and purpose...At our core we all have a need both biologically and spiritually to be loved..."

I so wish this were true. But I don't believe it. If everyone sought meaning and purpose in life, they would be incapable of cutting someone's head off or chopping them into pieces while still alive. If there was an innate need to be loved they would be incapable of shooting and killing a child.

"Somehow these people of the cartels never get the message. They continue to tear at the very fiber of our essence as human beings."

I do agree with these lines, however. To destroy the essence of what it means to be human is their goal whether they realize it or not.

And "To invest in our highest potential" should be the goal of everyone who still wants to be human.

Your purpose is to inspire us. It has.

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/user/thepenrev#p/u/7/e6fA5kCkGes

Anonymous said...

Thank you Tomas, it was good to read this and I am glad I did. If we lose hope, we lost everyhting!

Anonymous said...

The violence in Mexico will cease, but slowly. Things have to change at the community level. This change will take place on a generational time scale (10-30yrs). However things will only change if the federal government steps up and funds projects to re build infrastructure, community centers, out reach programs, bring running water and electricity to communities that do not have these luxuries, and most importantly put a lot of money into education. The class rooms have to become environments in which kids at all grade levels are motivated to learn , challenge themselves and explore. If the people of mexico cant have these things then this monster which has devastated Mexico in the last three years will continue to grow.

Anonymous said...

@ 4:50 and 5:50
what is it that you agree with?

Ernest1 said...

And Anonymous of 10:35, what is it that I said about Tomas's commentary that you seem to disagree with me about?

ajulio said...

very well written poem...uh article.

i agree with you. protect the children. improve education. create employment. and respect for acknowledging the good people who valiantly fight and die for the good citizens of mexico.

when i first got on BB, i was an optimistic dreamer who believed that somehow if the people got together, they could bring peace to mexico but unfortunately, i agree with 5:50 pm and 12:38 pm. what mexico needs first is justice.

a country without any justice, is a country that does'nt care. mexico should but unfortunately won't work on creating a democratic legal system. without any democracy, mexico is just another incompetent and corrupt government.

protection and justice should come first...until this happens, to me, mexico is in a hopeless situation. mexico needs better leadership.

@ 12:38 pm

i feel your anger too. its frustrating to see how mexico has become a slave country. i see how the citizens of egypt have shown their strength by taking on their government, and then i see how passive the mexican citizens are, easily accepting any abuse that their government allows or forces on them.

i agree, mexico needs more help. maybe from the U.S. but calderon will never ask for it.

Ernest1 said...

When things look most desperate, that is when Mexico will rise up once again and rejoin the international community, rather than merely continuously playing puppet Spanish speaking 'country' totally underneath US government's thumb and direction.

Anonymous said...

Socialism does not work, I repeat,govt can not fix it.

Ernest1 said...

Whether 'socialism' works or not is another question. Capitalism is not exactly working either. That's why we should all be so lucky to even have a planet left in another 100 years of capitalism.

And most government doesn't fix anything for the people because it is government run by rich robber elites.

What definitely doesn't work for people under the thumb of a group of foreigners is US Imperialism. It sinks them into poverty, disease, and dictatorship. This is something that Tomas doesn't seem to understand too well...

thursday said...

irregardless of outside influences including colombian drug dealers and US drug addicts

the heart of the problem is the ingrained greed and corruption existing deep in the character of the mexican people

any position other than this is either purposeful denial or entrenched ignorance

Ernest1 said...

Thursday, just how does an entire nation's people supposedly have ingrained greed and corruption in them per your most learned opinion?

Talk about painting with way too broad a brush???? I think that your statement was about as broad a brush as one can imagine anybody ever possibly carrying.

And what do think us US citizens have supposedly all ingrained inside of us? Since we have less indigenous blood inside us than Mexico's population, our elites having mainly murdered off the indigenous peoples, are we supposedly a nation with ingrained sharing and lack of corruption according to you? Makes me laugh to think that anybody might think that...

rose said...

Unfortunately as much as i hate to say it, ernie is right.! The human heart is diseased (with lies, greed, lust, hate,) People are crying out for a savior in government,in society, in decent people, but no one will come, but it's just like the 'devil', to stir up people with pain and suffering, so he can make his GRAND ENTRANCE INTO THE WORLD...!! Only the one savior will come, and his name anti-christ. Rev. 9:20. And the rest of men which were not killed by these plagues, yet repented of their work of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood, which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk, [santo muerte} 21;. Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, [drug dealings], nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts...EVERYTHING IS HEADED TO A CATACYSMIC EVENT IN THE WORLD, and people will be screaming for a savior, and he will come; Daniel-8;25.And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by PEACE SHALL DESTROY MANY...wHAt i see today, and yesterday, and tomorrow, is that MAN is incapable to rule in a manner that's civilized. Give someone POWER, AND TEST HIM, and unfortunately they can't help themselves to the cookie jar when no-ones looking.!!!

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