Michael Webster
Borderfire Report
April 3, 2008

Hundreds being rounded up by Mexican Federal Police and Mexican soldiers in the violence-plagued city of Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, across the river from El Paso Texas.

According to Mexican authorities they have detained or arrested Juarez police officers, businessmen, bar owners, bartenders, cab drives, city and state employees in a military offensive sweep of the city. It’s also reported that tons of drugs have been found and confiscated. Raul Sanchez a resident of the city said,” he has personally seen 30 Mexican army garrisons located throughout the city. He says you can see the soldiers and the federal police in blue patrolling in all parts of the city.”

A shop owner on Juarez Ave. who wants to remain anonymous said, “This operation will only bring more violence and will keep his and other customers away.” Some people worry the violence will carry over to El Paso and others think it’s just hurting tourism.

A fierce gun battle between some members of the Mexican Army and Juarez police officers exploded in the streets because officers refused to co-operate and take part in the operation to check for illegal arms and drugs.

At least three men who drug cartels believed were co-operating with authorities were hooded and shot in the head by cartel assassins in what is believed retaliation by the cut throat cartel gang enforcers as a warning to others there will be consequences for those who do not remain loyal. According to a caller who said he was connected to the cartels. He also claimed that the cartel bosses are uniting against the Calderon forces and they intend to defeat the federal forces through head to head confrontations and also with gorilla hit and run tactics.

News reports confirm that there are cartel training camps on and near the border where assassins are being trained. The cartels are known to have drug business dealings with terrorist organizations including Al Quata and those terrorist training squads from Afghanistan are being used in these camps as instructors and have even trained in how to build and place explosive devices of the same type used in Iraq and Afghanistan against American soldiers. A Mexican official confided in the El Paso Journal and said that even if the federal authorizes are successful in routing out the criminal elements in Juarez he and others are concerned that the criminals will just run across the open border and infiltrate El Paso and other border cities. He says there is Intel which is indicating that should that happen the drug cartels will strike the Mexican army and the Mexican federal police from the U.S. side of the border. He says he hopes the American army will help keep that from happening.

Its being reported that an anonymous tip lead the Mexican Army to a house where they found drugs, arms and three hostages; one of them an El Paso resident. The men were found handcuffed inside a home in an upscale neighborhood. They said they were asked to give up the names of their drug dealers in exchange for their freedom. The men had been kidnapped at different locations. An investigation continued.

The Mexican Army believes that there are other hostages some American still being held in safe houses throughout the Juarez area. Calls from concerned relatives are being received by the U.S. Consulate offices in Juarez.

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