- The Mexican government has actively combating the drug cartels over a three year period, including stationing 80.000 soldiers around the country. You frequently see pick up trucks full of masked and heavily armed soldiers on the highways here in Monterrey
- In the beginning of January of this year some 15 or 16 people were killed at a party in Ciudad Juarez by members of a 'mercenary army' called Los Zetas. The wiki page states that they are considered by the DEA to be the most heavily armed and advanced criminal organization in Mexico.
- This act has prompted the Cartel Del Golfo, La Familia Michoacana and the Cartel Sinaloa, the most powerful cartel in the country, to gang up to exterminate the Zetas. They believe that the acts of the Zetas, being more prone to violence against non-drug traffickers (or 'citizens', as Omar in The Wire would put it) is what has made the government crack down on the drug trade in they way that they have.
- The troubles are the worst in the border states of Chihuahua and Tamaulipas, in cities like Ciudad Juarez, Nuevo Laredo and Reynosa. However, hardly any news aside from Twitter sources are available. The violence is both between army and cartels, and different cartels fighting each other.
- This morning there was a shoot out on the big highway right outside my university campus at around 1am, between members of the Zetas and Mexican army soldiers. Two 'assassins' made their way inside the campus before being gunned down right by the gym. There were cleaning crews there this morning taking away the blood.
Just thought I would share that with you. There is a general lack of information over here, but I just thought I'd ask your opinions on the matter. Is the general media black out in Mexico (at least, that is how I perceive it) a deliberate attempt at calming the population, or just to evade showing the failures of government measures to curb cartel influence in the country? Woah, this turned out to be a long one.