Protesters burn capital building in Mexico state seat


So… let me get this all straight.

Drug cartel uses corrupt cops to kidnap dozens of student teachers, presumably as a form of terrorism and silencing of dissent, although the article isn’t clear on details.

So in response, other student teachers acting in solidarity tried to enter into the state congress, but were “repelled” by riot police? Okay… uhh… the article isn’t clear on details, but it sounds like the response by the citizenry here was to form a mob and try to storm the local legislature by force?

…although I’m curious how the riot police deployed so quickly, unless they were already deployed for some reason, be it to crack down on either peaceful protesting or violent rioting (again, the article lacks details, so not sure which)…

Having been “repelled”, the mob instead descends on the capital building and proceeds to hurl rocks and molotovs at it, smashing windows and starting fires.

This despite the facts that 1) neither the state legislature of the congress nor the officials of the capital building have any clear connection to the corrupt police officers working for the drug cartels, and 2) the government had already detained twenty-six police officers in the course of investigating the corruption and kidnapping, so they appeared to be doing their job.

Did I miss anything?

What is a 'battle bar"?


A snack full of rage, blood, sweat, tears and calories?


When cops are corrupt, it usually involves complicity from the rest of government. The fact that the government is “conducting an investigation” means nothing - it’s what even the most corrupt governments do when people get this angry. And unsurprisingly, the federal government tends to ignore local corruption unless it becomes like internationally noticed. Torching government buildings may be the best shot at that notice, if you live in Chilpancingo, Mexico.

Your preoccupation with mobs and violent rioting vs. peaceful protesting is especially naive in a situation where dissidents are being kidnapped, murdered and possibly buried in mass graves. This is not an MLK re-enactment, this is civil war.


Corrupt police involved with drug gangs… nothing particularly Mexican about that situation! (Waiting in line to go see Kill_the_Messenger)

I do think you’re missing a lot.

  1. The teachers college in Guerrero is not a typical college. In a lot of ways, it’s a political organization. They engage in some very questionable practices, like commandeering public transportation to use in their demonstrations. They sometimes fight against education changes, and sometimes for the rights of local communities. They are of course citizens, but they are very organized and politicized citizens. You seem to be thinking they are an “angry mob” and I don’t think this applies here.

  2. By saying “drug cartels uses corrupt cops” you are implying that only a handful of cops participated. This doesn’t seem to be the case. There is a strong relationship between local government, state government, the army and criminal groups. In this case, the mayor appears to be directly involved. He is being sought by state and federal authorities. As for the state legislature, representatives in Mexico are much more close to their parties, and to local government, than in other countries. I don’t know why the protesters would have decided to target it, but a state legislature in a particularly corrupt state with ties to organized crime is certainly not an unrelated party.

  3. You are being very generous if you think someone is “doing their job” and everyone should just sit tight and wait for the results. This is not the first instance of violence linked to the government in Mexico. It’s not even the first instance of mass murder linked to government this year. (See this for a case involving the army and attempted to be covered up by the Estado de México government and likely the federal government as well: It’s also not the first time a member of that teachers’ college gets killed. (See this for something that happened in 2011. In this case the Federal Police was involved:


I merely said that “they appeared to be doing their job”. I admit to having very little sense of context for Mexican law and politics. Working off a single article and a citation of dozens of arrests having been made, surely you could understand how that would appear as if the government is doing their job to some extent?

Now, obviously, as this case shows, appearances can be deceiving - particularly to those outside of the situation in question. I don’t believe I was being “very generous”, I believe I was making reasonable basic assumptions without deeper context - which is why I was asking if I had everything straight in the first place.

On that note, I appreciate the rest of your post and the infomation you share within it.

I didn’t mean to be patronizing.

I do see how dozens of police officers being arrested could appear as if the government is doing their job. They could very well be. Or they could just be containing the situation by finding a few scapegoats. I think it’s early to tell.

I tried to explain why a lot of people in Mexico, and in particular the students of the teachers’ college, would be skeptical of any level of government providing an appropriate response without major outcries in the media and through protests.


Good to know. Thanks for being cool about it all, and for having some good info and insights. :smile:

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It’s regretful that Cory didn’t add links to previous BB postings about the depth and breadth of corruption in Mexico as it pertains to the War on Some Drugs. Xeni, in particular has posted multiple times about the, well, @zikzak nailed it, defacto civil war in Mexico. It’s ordinary people vs. drug cartels and/or the government, but not all the government sides with one cartel, so there’s sometimes the appearance that the police/military are doing something to counter the terrors perpetrated by the cartels. It’s complicated, it’s horrible, and it would be difficult to bring to a total end tomorrow.

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