Wednesday, August 16, 2006

South of Da Border...

While politically preoccupied with Iraq, the Middle East, and with our own approaching elections, it would do no harm to keep a weather eye on our neighbor to the south.

Supporters of unsuccessful leftist presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador have kept Mexico City tied up in knots since the Mexican presidential elections last month. The Federal Electoral Tribunal is supposed to announce the findings of its partial recount on 31 August.

We have half the month left till results are announced, and already matters are turning violent. Yesterday, Mexican Federal Police, using tear-gas and truncheons, drove pro Lopez Obrador protesters away from the meeting place of the lower house of the Mexican congress, the Chamber of Deputies.

All this trouble doesn’t look like ending peacefully. Supporters of Mr. Lopez Obrador are vowing to place the putative winner of the presidential election, Mr. Felipe Calderon, “under siege” if the Federal Electoral Tribunal decides Mr. Calderon actually did win.

Remember that Mr. Lopez Obrador is the former mayor of Mexico City, and that all of this agitation, as summer drags on, has been going on for quite a while in Mexico City. An important thing to keep an eye on will be the reliability of the Federal Police, and whether they began, after a time, to show a certain reluctance to use tear-gas, or their truncheons, and to otherwise confront the crowds.

Street protests and agitation have been going on in Mexico City, and elsewhere in Mexico, since Don Felipe’s victory was announced. How is this possible ? Don’t the protesters have jobs ? If not, who is paying the freight – that is, organizing food, lodging, the signs, and the marches ? Worth looking into, and presumably the Mexican police and intelligence agencies have this covered.

The Mexican authorities would probably be well advised to bring in some police and military units recruited in other parts of the country, perhaps, say, from northern Mexico, and to spend some time seeing that units exposed to the rioters are properly indoctrinated and purged of the dubiously obedient.

Finally, Concise World Armies, 2006 lists three Military Police brigades as being stationed near Mexico City. Hopefully, the Mexican authorities have seen to their care and feeding. They may need them, because it looks like a long summer in the City of Mexico.


louielouie said...

uh, this isn't the same calderon, or relation to, that gave crockett and tubbs so much trouble down in miami back in the mid '80s is it?
cue jan hammer.........

El Jefe Maximo said...

Maybe Calderon will be looking for a new Miami address if Lopez Obrador has anything to say about it.