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Rony

Michoacan for dummies .... and I am one of them

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One thing I know for certain about the people of Mexico is that they elected Mr. Peña president to a large extent based upon the fact that he actually had a plan to fight crime when none of the other candidates even had a clue.

What % of the people who actually voted selected EPN for President? Does that % sound like a ringing endorsement for his "plan" to fight crime?

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So, now there are non -corrupt police that will protect them and it is 100% safe for them to return to their homes and normal lives?

I'm not sure, but I believe the new elite police force will take over and fill in as needed as the existing cops are reevaluated and replaced.

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What % of the people who actually voted selected EPN for President? Does that % sound like a ringing endorsement for his "plan" to fight crime?

If you have a point to make...make it.

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If you have a point to make...make it.

You giving the % might make a point. Problem with doing that? You seem to have all the pertinent stats. ;)

I'm not sure, but I believe the new elite police force will take over and fill in as needed as the existing cops are reevaluated and replaced.

Maybe they think they aren't sure either and are afraid that no one will protect them. What do you think? Would you go back not knowing 100% that you would be safe?

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I've been monitoring this thread for a while and have bitten my tongue to avoid getting into this discussion. But now I have to comment.

My husband and I live in Pátzcuaro and often travel to the Pur'ephecha Sierra, the country northwest of the lake, to visit artisans. There is such incredible skill and art in those village that it would be a crime against humanity to let the people who have inherited their craft from their fathers and mothers and abuelitos die because we are too afraid to go there and buy their products. I have heard that their children, and they themselves, feel that they can no longer make their traditional crafts because no one comes to buy it. Art is one thing, but people have to eat.

The news media has made people afraid to go out to the craft villages to meet the artisans in their homes and buy their crafts. (Shoot--people are afraid to go to the butterfly preserves, which are nowhere near the conflct.) When the last old people die, and their children have gone to the US to pick effing tomatoes, how many of us will be ashamed that we let that happen? I will, for one. Bishop Vasco de Quiroga created this creative environment because he realized that by fostering traditional crafts we would maintain traditional cultures that would sustain communities. He was inspired by Thomas More's Utopia and because of him we have the rich cultural heritage of Pátzcuaro and the lake villages.

Those places aren't where the conflict is. Yes, the auto-defensas have existed in Cheran for a while, but that's because they are trying to protect their forest from illegal logging (probably cartel-driven). What's going on in Tierra Caliente is very different. I'm sorry that the government hasn't identified the real problem--the power of the cartels--and is instead trying to disarm the auto-defensas. I saw on my cellphone tonight that the government asked the auto-defensas to become de facto police and that they declined. My fear is that the people have lost confidence in the government's ability to govern and have been forced to protect themselves. It's a sad thing to see happening.

However, I would urge everyone to remember how much the local people need us--to visit them, to buy their incredibly beautiful products, to remind them that we want them to continue making their work. If we shy away we let the bad guys win. Hotels in Pátzcuaro also need us if they intend to stay in business. As I walk around town I see plenty of people who obviously aren't locals, and I applaud them.

So don't let the scaremongers put you off from a trip to see the Monarchs or to visit Pátzcuaro and the lake region. Because the Monarchs are in such danger from loss of habitat in the US (thank you, Monsanto) you'd better do it sooner than later. That's the real danger, not from cartel violence. The experience is worth it.

Bad things happen everywhere, including Indiana where 3 people died in a massive pile up yesterday. No one is always safe all the time.

My dos pesos.

Nancy in Pátzcuaro

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I've been monitoring this thread for a while and have bitten my tongue to avoid getting into this discussion. But now I have to comment.

My husband and I live in Pátzcuaro and often travel to the Pur'ephecha Sierra, the country northwest of the lake, to visit artisans. There is such incredible skill and art in those village that it would be a crime against humanity to let the people who have inherited their craft from their fathers and mothers and abuelitos die because we are too afraid to go there and buy their products. I have heard that their children, and they themselves, feel that they can no longer make their traditional crafts because no one comes to buy it. Art is one thing, but people have to eat.

The news media has made people afraid to go out to the craft villages to meet the artisans in their homes and buy their crafts. (Shoot--people are afraid to go to the butterfly preserves, which are nowhere near the conflct.) When the last old people die, and their children have gone to the US to pick effing tomatoes, how many of us will be ashamed that we let that happen? I will, for one. Bishop Vasco de Quiroga created this creative environment because he realized that by fostering traditional crafts we would maintain traditional cultures that would sustain communities. He was inspired by Thomas More's Utopia and because of him we have the rich cultural heritage of Pátzcuaro and the lake villages.

Those places aren't where the conflict is. Yes, the auto-defensas have existed in Cheran for a while, but that's because they are trying to protect their forest from illegal logging (probably cartel-driven). What's going on in Tierra Caliente is very different. I'm sorry that the government hasn't identified the real problem--the power of the cartels--and is instead trying to disarm the auto-defensas. I saw on my cellphone tonight that the government asked the auto-defensas to become de facto police and that they declined. My fear is that the people have lost confidence in the government's ability to govern and have been forced to protect themselves. It's a sad thing to see happening.

However, I would urge everyone to remember how much the local people need us--to visit them, to buy their incredibly beautiful products, to remind them that we want them to continue making their work. If we shy away we let the bad guys win. Hotels in Pátzcuaro also need us if they intend to stay in business. As I walk around town I see plenty of people who obviously aren't locals, and I applaud them.

So don't let the scaremongers put you off from a trip to see the Monarchs or to visit Pátzcuaro and the lake region. Because the Monarchs are in such danger from loss of habitat in the US (thank you, Monsanto) you'd better do it sooner than later. That's the real danger, not from cartel violence. The experience is worth it.

Bad things happen everywhere, including Indiana where 3 people died in a massive pile up yesterday. No one is always safe all the time.

My dos pesos.

Nancy in Pátzcuaro

Nancy, thak you for your positive post; my body is in Jalisco but my heart is in Michoacan. I have travelleld to many of the artisan villages around the lake and it was truly a magical experience. VIVA MICHOACAN!

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I feel for the innocents in Michoacan - as I am sure every one else here does.

Meanwhile - the Jalisco Attorney General has issued an alert to be on the lookout for Michoacan narcos migrating to Jalisco -http://www.informador.com.mx/jalisco/2014/509417/6/la-fiscalia-pide-denunciar-mudanzas-sospechosas.htm

GUADALAJARA, JALISCO (25/ENE/2014) -.Jalisco The Attorney General recognizes that the conflict in Michoacán insecurity could lead to the migration of criminal groups to our state. So ask the cooperation of the public to report any "suspicious" the phone number 066. Moving "The 'cockroach' effect can occur (affecting Jalisco)...................to include being on the alert when homeowners prepay fo a year etc.

And CNN Mexico an article/timeline on how Michoacan lost course today - http://mexico.cnn.com/infografias/2014/01/15/michoacan-la-entidad-que-perdio-la-brujula

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How many municipal police, mayors, and state police, who have links to organized crime were arrested during this time? If you were to stand in Costco, how many people do you think would be linked to organized crime in that group? To me, that number is insignificant and the report is meant to weaken support for the citizens involved in this movement.

Anyway....it looks like we are all reading the same reports, from the same sources. My Spanish is not good enough, even with 3 classes a week. I appreciate the time many volunteers are putting into interpreting for we English speakers. That is why I am a BB fan. I will check out your face book page, if you send a link. I am assuming you are Mexican, and its in Spanish? Don't know you but glad to read a different opinion, always.

ValGal...Sorry I just noticed your post in reviewing this thread. Here are some sample links to the material I've been receiving on my FB page. I can't verify the validity of the any of the claims. Early in this thread we established the fact that there are no truths here. A word of caution: some of the images are quite graphic.

https://www.facebook.com/ValorPorMichoacan2

http://revoluciontrespuntocero.com/pulsociudadano/fotogaleria-la-guerra-por-michoacan/

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=1446763575538302

http://aristeguinoticias.com/1808/mexico/autodefensas-michoacanos-anuncian-revolucion-nacional/

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Let me throw in this question and let us think a bit ahead in time here.

I see the autodefensas growing by the day (even today, with the army presence, more towns have been taken by them, in Michoacan).

Could (in the long run) the autodefensas turn into a significant political power in this country ? Maybe movimiento 132 could join them (if there still is someone left of them) ?

After all, they seem to have a respected leadership.

I understand that a lot of Mexicans are so very fed up with the corruption, the lawlessness, the completely broken education system, .... and all the existing rotten political parties, that this just could be the only way out ?

Could the dispair of a country lead to this ?

And..... why isn't someone like AMLO jumping on this wagon ?

All the right ingredients seem to be on the table.

Or.... are some other countries already seeing this and therefore getting worried (like they showed this week) ???

Rony

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Yes. The movement is growing, and spreading to other states. Two major fundraisers in California this week. This is nothing a government wants to see. Could race across Mexico like a Forrest fire..... The next round of elections will be interesting. I guess only time will tell.

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Yes. The movement is growing, and spreading to other states. Two major fundraisers in California this week. This is nothing a government wants to see. Could race across Mexico like a Forrest fire..... The next round of elections will be interesting. I guess only time will tell.

I read that authorities in Jalisco are getting worried.

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Nancy, thak you for your positive post; my body is in Jalisco but my heart is in Michoacan. I have travelleld to many of the artisan villages around the lake and it was truly a magical experience. VIVA MICHOACAN!

I'm with you, Sandrita, as you well know. I prefer to trust the judgment of those who live in Michoacán than people speculating on this forum who sometimes don't even understand the difference between Tierra Caliente and la Sierra de los Purepecha. I just shake my head when someone tells me something like they don't want to go with me to the concurso in Ocumicho because it's in Michoacán and Michoacán is dangerous.

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From reading the posts on this thread I would have to say that the title of it is very appropriate.

Don't hold your breath waiting for the revolution...

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I read that authorities in Jalisco are getting worried.

I think they are justified in their concern. I look at Michoacán every time I sit on my terrace and look across the lake. I drive through Michoacán on my way to and from Mazamitla. Michoacán is our neighbor.

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I'm with you, Sandrita, as you well know. I prefer to trust the judgment of those who live in Michoacán than people speculating on this forum who sometimes don't even understand the difference between Tierra Caliente and la Sierra de los Purepecha. I just shake my head when someone tells me something like they don't want to go with me to the concurso in Ocumicho because it's in Michoacán and Michoacán is dangerous.

Shooting at the messenger(s) will not help anybody. Acting as if all is fine, will not solve the problems,.... quite the opposite.

The business people that are suffering should put pressure on people in power to really do something about the situation.

In a lawless state, within hours, troubles can spread fast, also into the so called safe areas. Therefore, it is still wise for people before travelling there, to first check with objective sources before they go.

If I would have to go there, I would,..... if not,.... I can wait a little.

Telling people that it is all safe could be criminal and if something does happen to a few tourists, in the long run, businesses will be hurt a lot more.

Like other people on this Forum, I personally know of tourists who got into trouble there, even in the so called safe zones.

Therefore, your kind of reaction (although probably well meant) could do a lot more harm to everybody (tourists and business people.

In the end, it is a decision that every person has to make for him/herself. But don't try to stop people from talking about it. There is enough of that already (in terms of media control).

I for one, am very greatful that we have this platform, where we can freely discuss and share ALL kinds of sources, so that we, and the rest of the world, can try to understand what is going on.

Security and safety is a serious matter. Having been a flight attendant for 15 years... I can say, even if there is only a little doubt, the plane will not take off, even if it is costing money,.. or jobs, for that matter.

And finally, let us not overestimate our influence, when expressing our opinions. It is not that tomorrow, all Michoacan tourism will completely disappear because they were reading what we share here.

Rony

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I'm with you, Sandrita, as you well know. I prefer to trust the judgment of those who live in Michoacán than people speculating on this forum who sometimes don't even understand the difference between Tierra Caliente and la Sierra de los Purepecha. I just shake my head when someone tells me something like they don't want to go with me to the concurso in Ocumicho because it's in Michoacán and Michoacán is dangerous.

Respect that people are different, and some people have the attitude that they want to avoid problems if they can help it. For me, I trust the tour companies here. They are not going to put themselves or their clients in harms way.

My favorite taxi driver will not drive to Michoacán, but he thinks it is safe to go with organized tours, from here, on the big busses.

I asked some friends, born and raised in Guadalajara, if they would drive to Morelia next weekend with me. They thought I was crazy. When I go to Mexico City, by myself, they get all worried for my safety. So don't zero in on the gringos, on this forum, for being ignorant and fearful. Talk to your Mexican friends, who live here or in the US, and ask them what they think.

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And here is what Dr. John M. Ackerman ( * about Dr. John Ackerman) said, as part of a recent opinion piece in La Jornada (http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2014/01/20/opinion/022a1pol ) :

"La posibilidad de un levantamiento social general en Michoacán, que también contagie a otras regiones del país, es real."

That is why the situation in Michoacan is getting the world's attention, a lot more than any other big narco related event in the rest of Mexico.

In the same article he also says that the present government has been taken by surprise by the effect ot the autodefensas and has enough reason to be worried.

He blames all political parties of "working together" with the narcos (the opposite of what happened in Colombia) and says that this also explains the success of the autodefensas,.... the same autodefensas that have started giving back property to the former owners, property that had been taken by the narcos.

It only remains to be seen how well the different groups of autodefensas can work together.

(my own free and shortened translation of his article).

* Dr. John Mill Ackerman Rose is an author as well as a professor at the Institute of Legal Research of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and vice president of the International Association of Administrative Law. He received his MA and PhD in Political Sociology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, while he earned his undergraduate degree from Swarthmore College. He has contributed to international newspapers

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Here's a very well written article (in English) from the Latino Times that touches on many of the issues we have discussed in this thread...and a few we haven't discussed. For instance, the article points out that the Templarios are deeply interwoven into the social fabric of Michoacan and actually enjoy a measure of support and respect among the general population. As someone pointed out earlier in this thread, the Templarios handbook is even passed out in some churches. Here's a link to the article.

http://latinotimes.com/latinos/1111297-cooling-down-mexico-s-troubled-hot-land.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

Also mentioned in this article is Mexican pop star Melissa. Her daddy is Enrique Plancarte, one the leaders of the Templarios. So here's a taste of her musical stylings. (If you watch the video on Youtube, you can read the comentarios...very interesting.)

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Here's a very well written article (in English) from the Latino Times that touches on many of the issues we have discussed in this thread...and a few we haven't discussed. For instance, the article points out that the Templarios are deeply interwoven into the social fabric of Michoacan and actually enjoy a measure of support and respect among the general population. As someone pointed out earlier in this thread, the Templarios handbook is even passed out in some churches. Here's a link to the article.

http://latinotimes.com/latinos/1111297-cooling-down-mexico-s-troubled-hot-land.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

Also mentioned in this article is Mexican pop star Melissa. Her daddy is Enrique Plancarte, one the leaders of the Templarios. So here's a taste of her musical stylings. (If you watch the video on Youtube, you can read the comentarios...very interesting.)

That was interesting. The comments on Youtube were very revealing. Thanks for posting.

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Alex, is papa El Tio, just captured by the Government?

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Thanks for the tip. According to the news, "El Tio" is Dionisio Loya Plancarte, probably related to Papa Enrique Plancarte. I'll look for more info on this.

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Dionisio Loya Plancarte is Enrique Plancarte's uncle and second in command of the Templarios. Here's the Borderland Beat story on his arrest:

El Tío Apprehended: Caballeros Templarios Leader 2nd in Command
date.pngMonday, January 27, 2014 | user.png Borderland Beat Reporter Chivis

Borderland Beat also posted on BB Forum by Itzli

EL Tío was found hiding in the closet-a 16 year old child was with him
tio+new+2.jpg
Dionisio Loya Plancarte was captured at a safe house in Morelia by the Army and the PGR , Federal Government officials have confirmed He was found hiding in a closet and was taken without a single shot being fired.
Dionisio Loya Plancarte, alias “El Tío”, is one of the premier leaders of Caballeros Templarios.
Loya Plancarte, for whom the PGR offered a reward of 30 million pesos, was arrested at dawn, federal government officials confirmed.
The detainee was taken to the premises of the Deputy Attorney Specialized Investigation of Organized Crime in Guerrero awaiting transfer to Mexico City..

Dionisio Loya Plancarte, is considered the second in command of the cartel, and is accused, along with Servando Gómez Martínez, La Tuta , for the execution of 12 officers of the Federal Police in July 2009.

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Respect that people are different, and some people have the attitude that they want to avoid problems if they can help it. For me, I trust the tour companies here. They are not going to put themselves or their clients in harms way.

My favorite taxi driver will not drive to Michoacán, but he thinks it is safe to go with organized tours, from here, on the big busses.

I asked some friends, born and raised in Guadalajara, if they would drive to Morelia next weekend with me. They thought I was crazy. When I go to Mexico City, by myself, they get all worried for my safety. So don't zero in on the gringos, on this forum, for being ignorant and fearful. Talk to your Mexican friends, who live here or in the US, and ask them what they think.

I ask the people who live in Michoacán, both Mexican and foreign, who are better informed of the situation than someone who lives in Jalisco or in the US. Interestingly Mexican my vet asks me if it's safe to go to Michoacán.

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A very dangerous move...

It is actually showing that the government admits that it can not handle the situation on its own. Over and over again, this government shows how it lacks a decent plan, continues to improvise and acts like a rat backed up in a corner.

And in meanwhile, the president (unlike former Mexican presidents) is playing "good buddies" with (of all people) Raoul Castro.

And this can have so many consequences.... what if a group of autodefensas would refuse to hand over prisoners to the army or federal police. Is it all in line with the Mexican constitution ?

What happened with the wonderful plan to disarm the autodefensas ? Not that I am in favour of it, but it all shows how chaotically Peña Nieto handles this.

I am also very much surprised of how, "all of a sudden and overnight" they discover the hiding places of leaders of the Templarios. Great that they finally do so, but makes one think, no ?? Just proves, as I said earlier, that they knew all along who, where and what. Dirty business.

And to conclude.... those who claim that this approach is so very different from the former government..... I don't see the difference (federales, army come in, make high profile arrest and send out the pictures all over the media,.... like El Tio), do you ?

Rony

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