A Mexican Town Under Siege As Police and Army Stand by.

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A Mexican town under siege, as police and army stand by - LA Times

A Mexican town under siege: 'Then ... they started to take people'
Residents say police, army stood by as gang took over Mexican town

They arrived carrying rifles, machetes and sticks, their faces covered with ski masks and scarves.

About 300 armed civilians poured into the small town of Chilapa, in the troubled state of Guerrero, on the afternoon of May 9, a Saturday, hitting people and breaking into their houses in a seemingly systematic rampage.

Behind them came white pickup trucks loaded with young men sporting high-caliber weapons. Cellphone video taken by residents shows armed people in civilian clothing threatening people on the streets.

“At first we thought that they might be community police,” said Felipe Nava Reyes, 24, a truck driver who was in the center of town when they arrived. Community police and self-defense teams are common in Guerrero and the neighboring state of Michoacan.

“But then on Sunday, they started to take people.”

The armed men and women who rode into town that Saturday were members of a criminal gang known as Los Ardillos, or the Squirrels. What unfolded over the next five days was a narco standoff between them and a rival drug gang, Los Rojos, or the Reds, that usually controls Chilapa, according to witnesses, social media and local news reports.

As so often happens in Mexico, the ordinary residents of the town were caught in the middle.

“The last time he was on WhatsApp was at 8:15 that evening. I called and called but haven’t been able to reach him,” Nava said.

By the time the outsiders left on Thursday, at least 16 people, all of them male and aged 14 to 30, were taken from the streets of Chilapa, according to families of the missing.

But residents believe that nearly twice that number may have disappeared and that their families have been too fearful to report them missing. The state attorney’s office in Guerrero said it was looking into at least 11 cases and considering four more.

Chilapa was locked down for five days by its occupiers despite the presence of the Mexican army, the gendarmerie (a national elite police force) and municipal and state forces, none of which intervened. Cellphone video shows residents admonishing soldiers for just standing around, and residents said that when they asked soldiers and police to act, they were told that the forces were under orders to just observe.

Schools and businesses were closed, and the town’s famous Sunday market didn’t open. The mayor fled.

The standoff in Chilapa eventually ended when the occupiers came to an agreement with the state authorities that the leader of Los Rojos would be arrested. The outside gang has threatened to return this week if the authorities don’t honor their promise.
 
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Well there was a bloodbath in Mexico in the last 24 hours as the police and drug cartels clashed resulting in the death of 43 cartels and one police officer. There were some 35 assault rifles seized and a 50 cal sniper rifle. Mexico is a very dangerous place and these drug traffickers are not afraid to engage the police.
 
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Our world is turning into one big Charles Bronson movie. It's scary that the gang, or anyone else for that matter, can get away with something like this. 10 years ago something like this would have never happened
 
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I checked the link, but didn't see an update on this story. I honestly think this issue has gone beyond anything the police can manage. I'm all for sovereignty, but even the Mexican military doesn't seem to be able to get a grip on the violence of these types of gangs/cartels. I don't see the situation changing unless drastic action is taken, but I don't see Mexico handling this on their own, unfortunately. As Jose Diaz Navarro mentioned, the police and military are afraid. I think it's going to have to be a joint effort from the Mexican government and others if this is ever going to be resolved, and meanwhile, the citizens are held hostage. The press is often afraid to report on these situations as well, because members of the media have been murdered.
 
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From what I have been reading about Mexico, I get an impression that the government has no control over the country. There was this drug lord they call El Chapo who recently escaped from jail thru an underground tunnel a kilometer long. The government immediately sent out a statement offering a reward in millions for the re-capture of the drug lord. And you know what the public said? They are glad that El Chapo had escaped. At least their place will have a semblance of peace and order again - the drug lord is feared by other criminals. See that?
 
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From what I have been reading about Mexico, I get an impression that the government has no control over the country. There was this drug lord they call El Chapo who recently escaped from jail thru an underground tunnel a kilometer long. The government immediately sent out a statement offering a reward in millions for the re-capture of the drug lord. And you know what the public said? They are glad that El Chapo had escaped. At least their place will have a semblance of peace and order again - the drug lord is feared by other criminals. See that?
Many who live in the areas controlled by the cartels and criminals such as El Chapo appreciate that they have done and continue to do what the government can't/won't do, which is bring some stability and jobs to the areas. They often are the ones who build infrastructure, since roads, shops, utilities, etc., are needed to produce, transport, and distribute their products. The standard of living is usually better in those areas, and apparently they look upon some of these people as folk heroes. Songs called corridos are written and sung, lauding their stories and lifestyles. LISTEN: El Chapo's Second Escape, As Told Through Mexican 'Corridos' : The Two-Way : NPR
 
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It kind of makes sense. The rules are pretty simple and easy to remember when dealing with someone like El Chapo... Don't steal, snitch, try to compete, etc. When you're dealing with the law there's always so much grey area. So many loopholes and corruption.
 
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It kind of makes sense. The rules are pretty simple and easy to remember when dealing with someone like El Chapo... Don't steal, snitch, try to compete, etc. When you're dealing with the law there's always so much grey area. So many loopholes and corruption.
Yes, and sometimes simple is better. I understand why they would support him and those like him, because these people have nothing, and he and some others like him have greatly improved their lives. The same thing has happened in Colombia and other places where drugs and drug money are prevalent. People will do what they can to make life better for those they love, and if they can't afford to feed or clothe their children, and someone like El Chapo comes along and offers food, water, clothing, electricity, roads, etc., it would be difficult (not to mention probably deadly) to turn away, so they often accept the largesse, along with whatever strings are attached.
 
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When it comes to feeding and clothing your children, you don't always have the option of taking the moral high ground.
 
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