Mexico: The Civil War Next Door

Posted Jun 17, 2005

As illegal aliens continue pouring in massive numbers across the U.S.-Mexican border, the region on the Mexican side of the frontier has turned into a war zone. The combatants include rival drug cartels and local and national police forces that battle among themselves.

The casualty count is already high and quickly mounting.

So far this year, says the Dallas Morning News, 600 people have been killed in Mexico in connection with the drug trade. Most have been killed in regions near the border.

The most notorious recent murder was the assassination of Alejandro Dominguez less than seven hours after he was sworn in as the uncorrupt chief of the thoroughly corrupt police force of Nuevo Laredo, a town across the border from Laredo, Tex.

Dominguez lived on the U.S. side of the border, worked as a small businessman and served as president of the Nuevo Laredo Chamber of Commerce. He assumed office at 1:59 p.m., June 8. “My duty is to the citizenry. I think those who should be afraid are those who have been compromised,” he said. At about 8:30 p.m. he was targeted by a fusillade of at least 35 bullets as he left his Mexican office to return to the U.S. for the evening.

That same day, seven masked men entered a hospital in Chihuahua City, Mexico, and murdered a Mexican federal police officer convalescing from a prior assassination attempt. The assassins also murdered two federal officers guarding the wounded man.

When 25 Mexican federal police officers arrived by plane in the Nuevo Laredo that Saturday to try to restore order, they were intercepted on their way from the airfield and fired on by local police in local patrol cars.

The Dallas Morning News reported last Thursday that of about 720 Nuevo Laredo police who had undergone drug and background checks, 290 had been cleared. Another 206 had been taken into custody.

“The sense in Nuevo Laredo is that they’re waiting for something big,” an unnamed U.S. investigator told the Morning News. “Everybody is preparing, buying guns. We’re looking at a bloody summer, and things may get nasty not just here, but in other cities, including Houston and Dallas.”

In Washington, D.C., meanwhile, Congress will be debating competing amnesty plans for illegal aliens.