“The Mexican Marines… Oorah!
The Mexican Marine caught on a helmet camera of a fellow Marine was wearing a red sweatshirt for some reason as he went room to room clearing each with a yell. I just saw the video. Being a former U.S. Marine, I am proud that our Mexican cousin Marines are getting well deserved attention.
This was no a game, it was the ultimate room-to-room search for the notorious drug lord, El Chapo Guzman, the former poor campesino (peasant) who started working drugs in Sinaloa state as a child. One might say that the nickname, El Chapo (shorty) is one of distinction in the Mexican underworld of drugs, actually, as another drug lord is called “El Barbie” for a cute Barbie doll, El Chapo actually is more acceptable in “masculine Mexico.”
El Chapo managed to elude the Marines in his safe house when they attacked by crawling through a tunnel to the Los Mochis city sewer system. He crawled through it for a kilometer or more, left it and stole a vehicle. He didn’t get far, the Marines and the police they controlled had the area totally shut down. El Chapo was captured. Against combat dressed and equipped Marines, the short one – El Chapo — looked really short and small.
As described to this writer, most children in the hills and mountains of El Chapo’s home state of Sinaloa (separated from the United States by one Mexican state, Sonora) know about the drug trade. Marijuana farmers are everywhere in the mountains; there are some opium poppy growers as well. For many these efforts are the only way to make a living.
The same Sinaloa source still wonders why it is in the United States that the wealthy, the rich, live on top of hills or mountains when in Sinaloa the poor live in the mountains and the wealthy live in the cities and on the coast.
Copying the Mexican mountain marijuana model is a burgeoning marijuana industry in California. One reads news accounts of marijuana farms being discovered by law enforcement in all parts of mountainous California, especially in national parks and forests and in Northern California where the 1960s Hippie Culture prevails in small rural towns and villages.
All the illegal marijuana agriculture California and of Sinaloa is now in jeopardy because of legal “medical” marijuana in many states and legal recreational marijuana in the states of Colorado and Washington. Every legal sale, of course, comes at the expense of the El Chapos of the illegal market.
The stirrings of a legal recreational marijuana vote are beginning in California that would hit the ballot in 2018. If it makes it to the ballot, odds on it will carry and the nation-state of California will reach a new “high;” just one more world trend- setting California benchmark.
Back to the Mexican Marines…Every breathing human being that can read knows about the invincible United States Marines and their winning battles in the hardest environments anywhere in the world from Arctic Russia to French forests, to Pacific island jungles, to the deserts and mountains of Iraq and Afghanistan, to the “Frozen Chosin” in Korea, to the volcanic sand of Iwo Jima, the “Shores of Tripoli” and the “Halls of Montezuma.”
Our Mexican cousin Marines are in the headlines again with the capture of El Chapo. Why, one asks is the Mexican Marina the force used in drug busts, drug busts everywhere in Mexico.
The answer is simple. The Mexican Army cannot be trusted. They are mostly conscript garrison soldiers located in all parts of Mexico where they are neighbors to drug cartels and local political and law enforcement, honest and corrupt. When a raid is being planned, it is not out of the question for an Army officer to sell the plans to the drug cartel before the raid.
That has not been the case with the Mexican Marines. So far, they have not only been superb in conducting surprise, successful drug lord raids and arrests, but not a single one of their actions has been tipped to their infamous “narcotrafficantes” targets.
These magnificent Mexican Marines are not stationed all over Mexico like the Army. These elite drug raiders are usually based in one or two bases on the Gulf of Mexico or on the Pacific Coast. They don’t have contact with local drug cartels and except at the highest level, at the admiral level, plans are kept secret. When it is time for a raid, Marines are loaded up into planes and or helicopters and taken to the raid. When they load up they have no idea where they are going.
They don’t know where or why they are in flight until they get there, pull on their Balaclavas (ski masks) and go into action.
These Mexican Marines are the elite forces of Mexico. To our cousin Marines, we offer a well-earned — Oorah!