Mexico

luka

Moderator
You get the same thing in drill with the juju men. The baths that confer invulnerability. The magical rings.
 

luka

Moderator
People who live in a world of violence and death and crime often turn to the Occult for protection. The standard gods don't really do the job.
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
re: the altar of skulls - is there genuine religious/spiritual/mystical sentiment behind stuff like that or is it just intimidation tactics?
both, depending on context, tho in this case probably just the former, given the occult overtones and that it wasn't publicly displayed

in general there's almost definitely an element of genuine belief in narco folk Catholicism, Santa Muerte etc

luke is pretty on the money as to the psychology of it, I think

reminds me of a line in a William Gibson book in re voodoo (paraphrasing) "you know this works man, it's street religion: you go to the gods who get job done"
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
not only do the standard gods not get the job done, neither do the authorities

it explains why people don't just suffer the rule, but actually romanticize and in some cases worship narcos

i.e. there is in a cartel named after the Knights Templar (really), who's dead founder Nazario is worshipped as a saint in Michoacan where he was from
 

DannyL

Wild Horses
Reminds me of that scene in City of God (weirdly unconnected with the rest of the film) where Lil Ze goes to a candomble guy and is given a protective necklace.
 

muser

Member
Not like we haven't got a pretty grim fairly recent history, heads on spikes, people being drawn and quartered etc..

I have a Mexican housemate in my new place on our first conversation didn't take long for her to end up on the cartels. She said she grew up in a pretty quiet port town that over the course of her childhood got taken over by cartels resulting in her seeing heads left in shopping malls, body parts left around on the street for people to see etc. And described how people got completely numbed to it eventually. I get the feeling most of it is purely fear and intimidation especially considering how much money is made from extortion.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
Not like we haven't got a pretty grim fairly recent history, heads on spikes, people being drawn and quartered etc..
Oh of course, that goes without saying. And yes we've got kids stabbing each other over drug deals but nothing that's within a million miles of what goes on in Mexico (not that you were saying that).
 

version

Who loves ya, baby?
Trump to designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorists

The US will legally designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorist groups, President Donald Trump says. The move would enable a wider scope of US action. Mr Trump also said he had told Mexico the US was ready to "go in and clear out" the cartels.

In response Mexico's foreign minister said his country would not allow any "violation of national sovereignty".

Earlier this month Mr Trump vowed to "wage war on the drug cartels" after a deadly attack on US citizens in Mexico.
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-50568812
 

version

Who loves ya, baby?
Anyone have any thoughts on stretching the definition of terrorism in order to include the cartels?
 

luka

Moderator
A world in which America grants itself the right to kill anyone in the world anywhere at any time and not just muslims in muslim countries.

Might other states unilaterally grant themselves the same leeway?
 

version

Who loves ya, baby?
I'm trying to work out what the definition is if the cartels now fall under it. Obviously they've threatened, kidnapped and killed public officials, but they aren't a political organisation with specific political aims.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
I thought terrorism was politically or ideologically motivated, by definition?

I get that the Mexican cartels are unbelievably rich and well organised, to the point of effectively forming armies in their own right, but they're still 'just' crime gangs, which have existed since forever. I bet there were cartels and Mafia-type gangs in Republican Rome.
 

version

Who loves ya, baby?
I guess they could stretch the definition in this case exclusively, but I think once the argument's been made, the language redefined, there's a good chance it becomes the norm. They don't tend to cede power once they attain it; the Patriot Act was more or less completely renewed this year.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
I guess narco-terrorism is a thing, but that's still the use of money derived from the drug trade to further political aims. So the gangsterism is, at least in theory, a means and not an end.

AFAIK the term is applied mainly in South America, too - dunno if Mexico has 'narco-terrorism' as such.
 
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