February 21, 2013
Fox News Latino, 2/20/2013
Former Mexican President Felipe Calderón’s first month at Harvard was marked by strong opposition, both home and abroad, to his strategy in combating his country’s drug cartels while in office. The former Mexican leader has remained relatively quiet as he begins his one-year teaching appointment at the Kennedy School of Government, but he recently defended himself in a commentary published in the Kennedy School’s Latin American Policy Journal.
Calling the border city of Ciudad Juárez a “place of progress,” Calderón said that his government’s tactics helped reduce the bloodshed in a town once dubbed the world’s most violent.
February 15, 2013
In Sight Crime, 2/13/2013
The following is an excerpt from Steven Dudley’s latest report for In Sight Crime: Organized Crime in the Americas, titled Juarez After the War.
For many crime watchers, the fighting in Juarez that cost nearly 10,000 people their lives over a four year stretch was a battle of the titans: the Juarez Cartel versus the Sinaloa Cartel. But beneath that analysis is the deeper question of who pushes the levers of power in Mexico.
The question is even more complicated in Juarez, a border city where several layers of power brokers are still seeking to impose their will on one another and control this lucrative plaza. These include large criminal groups, local and federal police, the army, the state Attorney General’s Office, politicians, and street gangs.
Read full report here…
January 14, 2013
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 1/14/2013
A new surge of killing, kidnapping and extortion is the latest sign that the violent crime wave in Mexico has not subsided since President Enrique Pena Nieto took office and could grow further in the weeks to come, U.S. law enforcement officials say. Fresh intelligence indicates that the paramilitary group known as the Zetas is pushing farther into northern Coahuila and Chihuahua states, threatening to reignite deadly violence in areas bordering Texas, including Ciudad Juárez.
November 30, 2012
Much has been written in recent months about this border city’s comeback. Businesses are reopening in Ciudad Juárez; the city’s vibrant nightlife is returning. Juan Gabriel’s concert celebrated the opening of a brand new baseball stadium named “Juárez Vive”: Juárez Lives. His homecoming was for many the clearest sign yet that Juárez is indeed moving forward, that Juárez has bounced back.
However tenuous, the improved security conditions in Juárez offer some hope for a country uneasily awaiting the swearing-in of Enrique Peña Nieto as president this Saturday. Just how much has Juárez really changed—and for that matter, Mexico? What does it mean that Peña Nieto’s Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, will come back to govern the country it imperiously ruled throughout much of the 20th century? Has the PRI changed? Will Peña Nieto continue the Drug War with the same zeal as outgoing President Felipe Calderón? And would that be good or bad?
November 29, 2012
Chicago Tribune/Reuters, 11/28/2012
Inside a notorious Mexican prison where armed convicts used to roam freely, selling drugs and deciding who was allowed in, the state is in control again. Prisoners are back in their cells and the once overcrowded complex sparkles with cleanliness.
Once best known as a party town for Americans hopping across the border for cheap thrills, Ciudad Juarez fell into chaos with about one in every six of the 60,000 victims of Mexico’s bloody drug war over the last six years dying here.
October 19, 2012
US News, 10/19/2012
Violence and poverty harm the mental health of children living near the Texas-Mexico border, a new study shows.
Researchers looked at the mental health of children and teens living in El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, in 2007 and again in 2010. All of the children were Mexican or Mexican-American and lived in homes below the poverty level. None had a history of diagnosed mental illness.
October 18, 2012
The Washington Post, 10/18/2012
In high times and low, Mexicans turn to their music. To love, to lament, there’s Mexican music for every occasion: poetic ballads, bouncy polkas, rodeo rancheras, plus goth rock, marimba, Mexican metal, you name it.
And then there’s opera.
Mexico boasts a dozen resident opera companies, but lately the art form has also taken hold in cities more associated with mayhem than mezzo-sopranos, like Ciudad Juarez, which hosts four major productions a year, rivaling Mexico City’s schedule.
October 16, 2012
The New York Times, 10/15/2012
Alejandro Hernández Cárdenas took a scorched-looking, decomposed head and five stiff, bloated hands and gently submerged them in his secret solution. After they soak for three days, he said, any scars, lesions or birthmarks the victim might have had will reappear.
The newly revealed details may never lead to a conviction, or even an arrest, but Dr. Hernández Cárdenas, a forensic odontologist who works in the Ciudad Juárez Forensic Science Lab, has attained the kind of star status that could be produced only in a city like this, with its semidesert climate, exorbitant murder rate and can-do frontier creativity.
October 11, 2012
Southern Pulse, October 2010
Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano is dead, according to the Mexican Navy. If true, his death will precipitate a rise in criminal action across the country as Los Zetas rights itself from this crippling event. Cities such as Monterrey, Nuevo Laredo, Zacatecas, and perhaps even Guadalajara will all feel the fallout of one man’s removal from the Mexican criminal system. But Ciudad Juárez, once the most violent city in Mexico, will remain calm…
To read the rest of the new Southern Pulse report on Ciudad Juarez click here