An article by Al Giordano, publisher of Narco News Bulletin, and another by Bill Conroy, point to the U.S. State Department's recent warning to U.S. citizens about Mexico border kidnappings and murders. The warning appears dubious - misguided at best, politicking at worst, and we see politicking in response coming from Mexico City, as Giordano points out. Apparently every time the U.S. gets too tough on Mexican drugs, the Mexican government responds with hints of legalization, to get the gringos to back off. It's happening again in this case.
Here in Tucson the border is way high on the list of important issues, with good reason. Nogales is only 90 minutes away. It's just fascinating how much spanish is spoken/written here, and how the border influences almost everything. My friend Shawn is having tooth problems and a tucsonian friend, when asked where a cheap dentist is in town, said "in Mexico." To us Northwesterners this seems totally bizarre, driving 90 minutes to go see a cheap Mexican dentist. But tons of folks do that. now are they going to stop because some bureacrat in Washington tells them the narcos are going to grab them for ransom? I doubt it.
Related news is that today, in a few hours, I'm going to go over to the house of Charles Bowden to interview him about narcotrafficking and corruption. He is a longtime resident of Tucson and has written many amazing books about the border and Juarez and the drug war which have been very inspring to me.
Most notably, he wrote the amazing book "Down by the River" (which I thought I had written about here last summer but I guess not) which is a nonfiction account of an El Paso family and how the drug war effected them, when one brother is killed and another, who is a DEA agent, thinks it's a message to him from the Juarez drug cartel. He proceeds to try to investigate the crime on his own time, since the agency forbids him to do it on the job, and his life gradually falls apart.
Anyway, I'm really pleased that Chuck agreed to an interview and am looking forward to meeting him.Posted by steev at Febrero 13, 2005 10:24 AM