Amid the horrific violence seen in Mexico over the course of President Felipe Calderon’s drug war, the nation’s capital had become a safe refuge for Mexicans fleeing drug war violence in the country’s extremities. But according to the LA Times, the Mexican military has increased its presence in Mexico City recently, raiding a hotel and a house in middle-class districts and arresting one suspected member of the Zetas cartel.
The Mexican government has vowed not to back down in the fight against La Familia drug cartel despite the criminal organization claiming to have dissolved itself, the Associated Press reported Wednesday. Mexican officials remain skeptical on the mysterious banners making the claim, believing it could be a plot to divert focus from the cartel. Mexico’s security spokesman, Alejandro Poire, said “there would be no truce” with La Familia, however he did not comment on the banners in the state of Michoacan.
A group of middle-class Mexican women on pink motorcycles has begun handing out food and medicine to the poor in Ciudad Juarez, Reuters reported Monday. The motorcycle club that calls itself “Las Guerreras” (The Female Warriors) rides out on their hogs every Sunday to dangerous neighborhoods, handing out cash, medicines, food, clothing and even birthday cakes, all paid for out of their own pockets.
During her visit to Mexico this week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton commended Calderon’s fight in the drug war, calling it “courageous” and adding that there is “no alternative,” LA Times reported Tuesday.
Avelardo Valdez of The Houston Chronicle argues otherwise: “Failure to curb drug war exposes Mexico’s weakness.”
Surveillance video from last Friday at the U.S./Mexico border near Naco, Ariz., shows drug smugglers employing a catapult to launch small bales of marijuana across the border, ABC News reported. National Guard troops monitoring the surveillance cameras contacted Mexican authorities who arrived to find approximately 45 pounds of marijuana, the catapult and the SUV belonging to the smugglers who fled the scene before police arrived.
Federal officials said Tuesday they have busted a network of gun buyers and smugglers responsible for arming Mexican drug cartels, arresting 17 people named in a 53-count indictment, The Wall Street Journal reports. Authorities in Phoenix have busted gun-smuggling rings in the past—including last year’s seizure of 1,300 weapons that were heading south from Arizona and New Mexico. Dennis Burke, U.S. attorney for the District of Arizona called the smuggling and straw purchasing of weapons “a huge problem” for the state. “The drug cartels go shopping for their war weapons in Arizona,” Burke said. “One of Arizona’s top exports is weapons for drug cartels.”
During Thursday’s YouTube Q-and-A session, President Obama found out that a burning question on the mind of Americans is his stance on legalizing marijuana. Although he said he is not in favor of legalizing pot, he thinks that drug use should be looked at more as a public health problem than a legal issue.
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne believes medical marijuana in the is subject to the state sales tax. One proposal would tax marijuana at a stunning 300 percent. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Steve Farley, said the tax could reduce the amount that people who use medical marijuana: “We all know that not all this will necessarily go to sick people,” he told the Arizona Republic. Andrew Myers, executive director of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Association said the tax would push medical marijuana out of reach of those who need it.
So you think you know all the various conditions that people say can be treated with marijuana? Try this fun pot quiz.