By: Diego Enrique Osorno
Chapters 1:On the morning of February 22, 2010, when Ciudad Mier was preparing for their annual festival, fifteen SUV's with the initials of the Gulf cartel (CDG) entered the city from the access road to Reynosa like some wild horses. The gunmen headed directly to the headquarters of the Municipal Police, got out of their vehicles and suddenly, the loud sound from the rattle of machine guns was heard hitting the old building. People all around hit ground and took refuge as best as they could.
After a few minutes the sound of gunfire subsided. Six scared municipal police officers were beaten and while gasping with their mouth open, cover in blood and with fear in their eyes, they were taken out of the police headquarters by the gunmen, who shouted insults against Los Zetas. That was the last time the six police officers were seen and it was also the last time there were municipal police officers in Ciudad Mier.
The criminal group set up gunmen in the three main entrances to the heart of Ciudad Mier and thus set up a wall so that four SUV's full of gunmen could safely travel the streets to search inside the homes and businesses in order to locate specific people. During that time at the main plaza across from the police headquarters, the wall was used to execute people. Bleeding to death, two men that had been found by the gunmen were taken to the plaza. There they were shot and then beheaded. Their heads ended up being placed in a corner of the plaza for everyone to see. Over time, because of the frequent executions on that corner, a name was given to it, that corner became known as "The Corner of the Decapitated."
A couple of hours after the gunmen left the village, the Army made a quick appearance and left before dark. All of following weeks the people of Cd Mier lived in a state of somnolence. The silence of the night was cut by distant voices and isolated shots. The streets were dirty and dilapidated, there was simply no way the people would celebrate their annual fiesta of March 6, which was cancelled that year in 2010, something that has not happened since the time of the Revolution.
Chapter 2:Although you don't see anyone, you know there is someone watching you. You feel it as you walk to try not to step on the small metal casings that have been spit by the mouths of the rifles, which are mixed and sctattered next to the broken glass, it is better to practice caution, it is inevitable that they will make a squeaky sound with the bottom of your boots.
You must hurry and finish looking at the thick dried pools of bood and thousands of bullet holes remaining in the walls of houses. You can not let nightfall find you as you seek to recover more testimony of what happened these last few months here. The darkness of a war zone is not the same as the darkness from a dry well, in fact, there are no hotels or places to which you can get to spend the night.
For now, this is not the magical village "Pueblo Mágico" that that is advertised at the entrance to the town: Judging by the visible signs of destruction, is the first line of the war in Tamaulipas.
It is assumed that the warring factions retreated a few weeks ago to set up camps in nearby ranches, and you, although you don't come embedded with an Army unit, who carry helmets and a flak jackets that are both hot and heavy, you can walk these streets where buildings are covered with ash, charred debris on the ground and no apparent sign of life inside. But you know you're in a ghost town and it is possible that the ghosts are watching.
Chapter 3Of what happened to Ciudad Mier was not an outburst of irrational violence. The raid on February 22, 2010 was part of a more ambitious plan to take control of the important median strip between Tamaulipas and Texas, known on the Mexican side as the "Frontera Chica." This is a key area for trafficking any type of illegal contraband to the U.S., and here you also find Cuenca de Burgos, the largest natural gas field in the whole Mexico.
The headquarters of towns like Miguel Alemán, Camargo, Valle Hermoso and Nueva Ciudad Guerrero were also attacked in the same way it happened to Ciudad Mier. The beginning of this offensive that the government failed to recognize has several names: those who initiated it, the members of the Gulf Cartel or C.D.G. - claimed that their surprise attack was "La Vuelta" or "The Return," while the target of their offensive, Los Zetas, placed a mark of that date on the calendar with the title of "La Traición" or "The Betrayal." While the people simply called it "El Alzamiento" or "The Rising."
The attacks coincided with the release in Mexico of some words of repentance from Osiel Cardenas Guillen, who led both groups before being extradited to the United States, where in exchange for a reduced sentence of 25 years of imprisonment to a medium-security prison, he provided key information against the Zetas, a group that he founded a decade ago.
When war broke out in Tamaulipas, a state whose size is four times bigger than that of El Salvador, and whose costs comprises much of the Gulf of Mexico, there was no particular reference or positioning from the state or the federal police to give an account of what was happening.
Before the questions posed by journalists on the reports of shootings and clashes in the region, the then Governor Eugenio Hernandez said it was pure psychosis. In the public log of activities from the Commander of the Eighth Army Military Zone he only references three clashes, in which a soldier was killed and eleven others were wounded.
Finally, based on a report from the DEA, it was reported that the federal government officials managed to infiltrate columnist in Mexico City that had knowledge of an alliance between the Gulf cartel, the Sinaloa Federation and La Familia Michoacana, under a slogan - that said - it benefits all: "México unido contra los Zetas" or "Mexico united against Los Zetas."