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    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Reports Of Mexican Special Forces Serving As 'Death Squads' In The Drug War

    Reports Of Mexican Special Forces Serving As 'Death Squads' In The Drug War

    Michael Kelley|Oct. 2, 2012,

    Ciudad Juárez, right across the border from El Paso, Texas, was perhaps the most dangerous place in the world between 2008 and 2011 as a “cartel turf war" led to more than 10,000 murders.But U.S. and Mexican officials told Stratfor that the surge of killings can be partly attributed to Mexican special forces and hitmen who were acting as U.S. informants.

    One email from a Mexican diplomat—identified by Narco News as Fernando de la Mora Salcedo—to Stratfor describes special-operations and intelligence units, embedded within the larger Mexican military force being sent to Ciudad Juárez in 2008 and 2009, that would carry out “surgical strikes” against low-level criminals.

    The major groups of killers have left the city, scared shitless, to take refuge elsewhere for an indeterminate amount of time...The military will surgically remove cells that had been previously identified, but for whatever reason were not taken down yet. Periods of adjustment will ensue, but the military will fill any void left in terms of territorial control, ultimately causing the competing [drug trafficking organizations] to wait/give up.

    The aim of the special forces, according to the Mexican diplomat, was to "give some breathing room to the [cartel] bosses so that they can issue orders to calm things down" and continue to traffic massive amounts of drugs across the border into the U.S. with less social violence..

    Narco News' Bill Conroy notes, in the definitive piece about the units he calls "death squads," that the "military cartel" was present in 2008 based on an analysis of murder cases in Ciudad Juárez.

    Conroy noticed that "the murders in Juárez are, in almost all cases, not the result of random violence or shootouts between rival drug gangs. In most cases, they are cold-blooded assassinations, often involving coordinated teams of armed, sometimes masked, men who are making use of intelligence, surveillance and paramilitary-like tactics to take out their victims."

    Hitmen from Ciudad Juárez were also given the ability to cross borders and kill due to their relationship with U.S. officials, according an email with the subject "Re: INSIGHT-MEXICO/US-Mishandling of ICE informants-US714."

    The email cites a "U.S. Law enforcement Officer with direct oversight of border investigations" who says that the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was "handling big hitmen from Juárez and letting them kill in the U.S."

    An analyst then notes that Stratfor previously covered the subject of cartel hitmen who were also ICE informants.

    Read more: Mexican 'Death Squads' In The Drug War - Business Insider
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    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Drug Cartels In Mexico And Colombia Allegedly Supplied With Weapons From Honduran Military

    APRIL 27, 2011 4:15 PM

    Gun stores on the U.S.-Mexico border have recently been criticized for their firearms ending up in the hands of drug cartels. However, a 2008 diplomatic cable obtained by Wikileaks draws light on another source for the cartels by claiming that theHonduran military at that time “lost” several U.S.-supplied military weapons.

    “The [United States Government] has become aware that light antitank weapons (LAWs) and grenades supplied to Honduras under the Foreign Military Sales program were recovered in Mexico and Colombia,” the cable said.

    “According to the [Defense Intelligence Agency] report, three light anti-tank weapons (LAWs) were recovered in Mexico City in January 2008, and one was recovered in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico in April 2008. ”

    These revelations, paired with other recent allegations of Honduran government officials involvment in the drug trade, created a debate over who is the main weapon supplier of Mexico’s drug cartels and lead U.S. military personnel to imply that some of Central America’s armed forces are responsible for many of the weapons in Mexico.

    “Over 50 percent of the military-type weapons that are flowing throughout the region have a large source between Central American stockpiles, if you will, left over from wars and conflicts in the past,”said General Douglas Fraser, the head of the U.S. Southern Command.

    Guatemala has also drawn criticism for weapons from the country landing in the hands of drug traffickers. Guatemalan Vice Minister of Security Mario Castañada recently said that there are three known cases of drug traffickers stealing weapons from military arsenals.

    One case that received considerable press was in March 2009 when Guatemalan authorities found military weapons stashed at a Zetas drug cartel training camp in the northern Quiche department. In April of that year, authorities found more weapons from the same source in a Zetas warehouse outside Guatemala City.

    These weapons were allegedly obtained through sales or theft from the Mariscal Zavala military base.

    The weapon’s black market in Guatemala is suspected to be controlled by a criminal organizations that evolved from the Cold War-era security forces and has retired and present military officers as well as government officials in its ranks. These members work together in counter-insurgency, intelligence, special forces, and death squads.

    “Sometimes compared to a clandestine security apparatus or a parallel state, these operatives are described as the “hidden forces” running the country’s criminal networks: extortion, kidnapping, money laundering, smuggling migrants, drug trafficking, and the illicit arms trade,” wrote Elyssa Pachico for InSight.

    Drug Cartels In Mexico And Colombia Allegedly Supplied With Weapons From Honduran Military

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