'Hugs not bullets' is getting people killed in Mexico
Frankly, nothing surprises me anymore in Mexico. First, the homicide rates are setting new records. Second, El Chapo's son is released when cartels overwhelm a military platoon. Third, and this is vicious, women and children are killed. Did I tell you they are Americans?
At least six children and three women living in a faith-based community of U.S. citizens in Mexico were shot to death Monday in the northern part of the country, and six more children were wounded and one missing after their convoy came under fire during a brazen daylight ambush believed to have been carried out by gunmen affiliated with the cartels.
Alfonso Durazo, Mexico's top security official, confirmed the six deaths, adding that six more children were wounded in the attack, with five transferred to hospitals in Phoenix, Ariz. One child is still missing.
How does this happen? I guess the cartels confused the compound for a rival gang. At least, that's what they are saying in Mexico.
The other reason is a bit more complicated.
President Andrés López-Obrador decided that you fight criminals with "hugs not bullets."
Like President Obama promising but never closing Guantanamo, President López-Obrador is learning that some criminal elements do not want to be hugged. Instead, they want to kill you.
As a Mexican friend told me on the phone, nothing in the strategy addresses the deadly use of high-powered guns by criminal elements. We saw a bit of that in Culiacán, when cartels demanded and got a prisoner released.
My sympathies are with the families of these innocents caught up in this murder. Unfortunately, it happens a lot in Mexico, especially in the rural areas, where criminal elements seem to be running the roads.
It may be time for joint military operations with Mexico!
PS: You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.