As a Mexican citizen living abroad I often get asked if the media is exaggerating the amount of violence in my home country. Most people can’t conceive that so much violence can be real and it saddens me to have to confirm that what they have read is true. The situation is even worse than what most of the world realizes. Be-headings, mass graves, kidnappings, drive-by shootings, car jacking incidents, bodies dumped and found with signs of torture are an everyday ordeal in some parts of Mexico.
According to one of the most read and highly regarded newspapers in Mexico, El Norte/Reforma, up until July 9th of 2011 there had been 6,924 assasinations linked to organized crime in 2011. That puts the death toll around 30,000 in the last five years.
I’m afraid the country where I grew up in is turning into a graveyard and the world has been, in my opinion, slow in their reaction to this tragedy.
Millions of Mexicans are united in a shout of protest but their voices seem to be drowned out by noise and gone unheard. Countless numbers of families have been touched by this outpour of violence and plenty of damage is being left behind.
As the population desperately screams for justice and dignity by blogging, tweeting, commenting, marching for peace; it seems that the world turns a blind eye and continues about their business as usual.
Why isn’t there more attention given to the matter?
How many more deaths will it take to get the world’s attention?
Why isn’t it being called what it is; continuous mass murder?
Why isn’t Mexico on the list of countries considered for the UN Peacebuilding fund?
Where are you NATO? Aren’t peace and security your mission? Isn’t one of your strengths to undertake crisis management through military operation?
It worries me that the embedded social problematic stemming from these extremely unstable years in Mexico might take generations to recover from. The physical scars will heal way before the social issues are resolved, the sooner the healing process starts, the sooner Mexico can return to be the country it was meant to be.
It is clear that many things must be fixed from within the country. I do believe that t is the responsibility of the government to continue to build strong institutions so to avoid a fertile soil for a violent climate. The underlying causes of these conflicts must be addressed and eliminated, BUT that shouldn’t discard international involvement.
Whatever progress is being made is not being quick enough. It seems to me like a stronger leadership is needed. The upcoming political campaign to elect a new President in 2012 will surely be full of passion about the subject.
Stay safe and please spread the word – Mexico needs help!