New Proceso article on General Acosta Chaparro’s role during Mexico’s dirty war

In case you need more evidence of the character of the Mexican General murdered Friday in Mexico City, see this excerpt from an article now appearing in Proceso. I hear a lot of rhetoric about the “incredible brutality” of the drug cartels and a lot of other superlative language… But there is seldom any questioning among US policy-makers and even among most journalists of Calderon’s claims that the Army are the incorruptible good guys fighting the drug traffickers. For many decades, the Mexican Army has been the major power in the country torturing and killing social activists and also enriching themselves and their civilian partners through drug trafficking. Here is a short example of some activities of General Acosta Chaparro in Guerrero during the “dirty war

The general who killed by the sword, a name associated with torture

In Guerrero he will be remembered as one of the most abominable actors in the dirty war of the Mexican state against dissidents. Since then his name, Mario Arturo Acosta Chaparro Escapite-continues to evoke the sensation of burning pain among social activists there, who consider him responsible for the detention and torture of hundreds of political opponents of the PRI regime, as well as the person behind many forced disappearances.

Four days after the Guerrero Congress installed the Truth Commission to investigate the crimes of the dirty war, General Mario Arturo Acosta Chaparro Escapite was executed in Mexico City on Friday, April 20, 2012. His name was inevitably linked to torture, enforced disappearance of hundreds of social activists and to many of the as yet unexplained deaths in the dirty war.

His actions in Guerrero during the administrations of Ruben Figueroa Figueroa (1975-1981) and his son, Ruben Figueroa Alcocer (1993-1999), marked him indelibly. In the Fox administration he was one of the soldiers under investigation by the Special Prosecutor for Social and Political Movements of the Past (FEMOSPP), which incorporated a preliminary investigation against him, General Humberto Quiros Hermosillo and then Captain Francisco Javier Barquin for their participation in the torture and murder of 143 people.

The case was referred to military courts, and during the hearings at least 10 soldiers were summoned to testify as witnesses, including Tarin Gustavo Chavez, who said that between 1975 and 1979 he worked as an aide to Acosta Chaparro.

During this period 1,500 arrests were made at checkpoints set up by the army on Guerrero roads and highways. Some of these detainees were transferred to the Military Air Base “Pie de la Cuesta.” According to witnesses, Barquin was responsible for registering their names in a book of people who would be disappeared [libro de pastas negras].

According to some versions, as part of that process, General Quiros Hermosillo and Acosta picked out detainees and posed them on a chair to take “the souvenir photo.” They then shot them in the neck with a .380 caliber pistol which Quiros named “the avenging sword.” The bodies were put into canvas bags, loaded onto an Arava airplane of what was then known as Squadron 301 and the dead would be to thrown into the sea during unauthorized flights.

According to Tarin Chavez, Acosta Chaparro personally executed some 200 people, “all of this with the permission of General Quiros Hermosillo” (Proceso 1356). Despite the incriminating evidence, he and Quiros Hermosillo were exonerated.
(Excerpt from an article appearing this week in the magazine Proceso 1851, now on the newsstands.)

at least 6 killed this weekend in violenct acts–Ciudad Juarez

Between Saturday and Sunday, there have been at least 6 victims of
homicide. This afternoon a decomposing body was found in El Million, a
village in the Valle de Juarez. Also this afternoon, 2 men were shot and
killed in the Colinas de Juarez neighborhood. A woman died in the hospital
after being shot along with 2 other women on Thursday this week. One woman
died at the scene and another victim was also taken to the hospital and
survived. A man and woman were shot on Saturday night at a party. Armed men
arrived and the man and woman were put against the wall and shot. The man
died at the scene. The woman was taken to hospital and the article says
that her condition is unknown. The body of a man was found in the Colonia
Arroyo Colorado and it appeared that he had been killed by blows to the
head with a rock. Also this morning, the body of a man was found in the
colonia Lino Vargas. the body had stab wounds and bullet wounds and was
wrapped in a black bag.

I will attempt to tally the deaths for April so far tomorrow. Since this is
past the middle of the month, I think that El Diario will produce the
tally.  molly

Two women are arrested, accused of kidnapping and murdering another woman–El Diario

Two women are arrested, accused of kidnapping and murdering another
Two women were detained and accused of kidnapping and murdering
another who, presumably, together with those arrested, had sold small
amounts of marijuana and engaged in prostitution in the Valle de
The suspects, Carolina Martínez Cardona y María Inés Jaramillo Ochoa,
were arrested under an order issued by a judge.
The homicide of Isabel Sosa Robles, 19, occurred in June 2008. The
body was found in the Ejido Loma Blanca, 2 km from the Juarez-Porvenir
highway and had been shot in the head with hands tied behind her back.
Presumably, the killers intended to make the murder appear as a
homicide linked to organized crime.
Official reports indicated that after one year, Sosa Robles had
decided to leave prostitution and to sell drugs and for this, she was
picked up and killed.

3 people killed yesterday in Juarez; 16 so far in April

Three people were killed yesterday in El Paso, two in a multiple shooting
that injured another person.  Earlier in the day, the naked body of a man,
his hands bound and head wrapped in tape, was found inside an abandoned
building. This brings the total for the month of April to about 16.   molly


Juarez Deaths March 2-4 2012

The following are the murders reported in Juarez since March 2-4.  No
homicides were reported on Friday March 2–another period of more than 24
hours without killings. But, on Saturday March 3, there were 5 murders–a
woman was found dead on the Zaragoza bridge early in the morning. A 64 yr
old woman in a beauty supply shop was shot more than 43 times. And an 11 yr
old girl was sexually assaulted and murdered in her home.  A man was killed
and his body hung from an overpass in southeast Juarez and another man was
shot. On Sunday March 4, there were 2 killings reported. A total of 12 so
far in the first 4 days of March.  My best guess for the year is now 216;
and the cumulative death toll since 2008 is 10,301.

*MARCH 4 2012*


El Diario

‘Levantan’ a uno de su vivienda y lo asesinan metros más adelante


*MARCH 3, 2012*



*MARCH 2, 2012*

*No homicides…*



The Deadliest Place In Mexico Who’s killing the people of the Juarez Valley?–Melissa del Bosque in the Texas Observer

To reach the deadliest place in Mexico you take Carretera Federal 2, a well-paved stretch of highway that begins at the outskirts of Juarez, east for 50 miles along the Rio Grande, passing through cotton and alfalfa fields until you reach the rural Juarez Valley, said to have the highest murder rate in the country, if not the world.

The Juarez Valley is a narrow corridor of green farmland carved from the Chihuahuan desert along the Rio Grande. Farmers proudly say it was once known for its cotton, which rivaled Egypt’s. But that was before the booming growth of Juarez’s factories in the 1990s left farmers downstream with nothing but foul-smelling sludge to irrigate their fields. After that, the only industry that thrived was drug smuggling. Because of the valley’s sparse population and location along the Rio Grande’s dried up riverbed, a person can easily drive or walk into Texas loaded down with marijuana and cocaine.

For decades, this lucrative smuggling corridor, or “plaza,” was controlled by the Juarez cartel. In 2008, Mexico’s largest, most powerful syndicate—the Sinaloa cartel, run by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman—declared war on the Juarez cartel and moved in to take over the territory. The federal government sent in the military to quell the violence. Instead the murder rate in the state of Chihuahua exploded. The bloodshed in the city of Juarez made international news. It was dubbed the “deadliest city in the world.”

Click here to read more

Rights Abuses by Mexico Military in Spotlight–Wall Street Journal

MEXICO CITY—Throughout Mexico’s drug war, the country’s military has shrugged off allegations that soldiers have occasionally tortured or even executed suspected members of drug cartels, saying that the majority of the charges were made up by zealous activists or the cartels themselves.

But three high-profile cases this month that are being investigated outside the military’s own secret courts have prompted the army’s top commander to say the military may have committed serious human-rights abuses.

Click here to read more


Bodies tossed on the road in Morelos–La Familia?

At least 6 dismembered bodies were thrown onto the Cuernavaca-Cuautla
highway in the state of Morelos this morning. The article also says
there were 4 bodies and that they were accompanied by a “narco
message” signed by the Familia Michoacana, based in Cuautla. The
bodies were found at about 7 this morning, just as the governor of
Morelos was delivering his Fifth Government Report (like a State of
the State message).

Note that the Familia Michoacana is the group that has been declared
defeated for at least half a year in all the reports from Stratfor and
US and Mexican government agencies. molly

Arrojan a 6 descuartizados en la carretera Cuernavaca-Cuautla
Excélsior | 15-02-2012 | 08:16

Five killed in Juárez on February 4-5

Five people were killed on Saturday and Sunday this weekend in Juarez.
The homicides included a man and woman, apparently tortured. the
bodies appeared with heads wrapped in plastic and tape and one was
displayed with messages scrawled on the body.
This brings the total for Feb 1-5 to 15 and for the year so far, about
137 murder victims. Added to the number of dead in Juarez since 2008,
the total homicide victims is now about 10,222.  molly molloy

To recap the previous numbers:
2008 — 1623
2009 — 2754
2010 — 3622
2011 — 2086
TOTAL = 10,085

El Diario de Juárez, 4 de febrero de 2012:
Tiran cadáver con huellas de tortura; tres homicidios ayer

El Diario de Juárez, 5 de febrero de 2012:
Tiran a mujer torturada; ayer, dos homicidios