Here is an excerpt from this story in The Monitor:
"Hundreds of families have fled thisPueblo Magico amid reported death threats from drug cartel thugs. About 300 people are seeking shelter in nearby Miguel Alemán, the nearest city to this town across the border from western Starr County. Sources said after [Antonio Ezequiel 'Tony Tormenta] Cárdenas’ slaying Friday, members of Los Zetas, the drug cartel controlling Mier, were yelling in the streets that they were going to kill everybody who remained in the town, sparking the exodus from town. Mexican Army officials in Reynosa and Nuevo Laredo denied knowing of any recent violence in Ciudad Mier. The military sources denied any knowledge about the threats. And today, authorities said they will need to open another shelter... Authorities in Miguel Aleman are helping the people, but nothing is being done to solve the situation in Ciudad Mier." Link to Full Article
And here is an excerpt from a separate but related story by Melissa Del Bosque in The Texas Observer:
"Residents in Mexican border cities including Ciudad Mier and Nuevo Guerrero have been living unde siege-like conditions for the past year. They are living without electricity, water. Their gas stations have been incinerated in a scorched earth campaign to take over the area as a prime drug smuggling route. One resident of Ciudad Mier, said cartel members have threatened to dynamite her town of 6,000 inhabitants, which neighbors Roma, Texas. With the death of Gulf Cartel capo Tony Tormenta in Matamoros last week, the bloody fighting over territory with the Zeta cartel has escalated to the point that Ciudad Mier residents started fleeing their town last Friday to take refuge in the neighboring city of Miguel Aleman... A resident of Ciudad Mier in the Monitor article described his city as a ghost town: 'The authorities do not go there. There are no soldiers there. There is nobody,' the former Mier resident said. 'The mayor is not there anymore, there is no police, no traffic authority — nobody. It’s a ghost town. All the businesses are closed. If you want an aspirin, you have to travel to Miguel Alemán, and by bus, because if you drive they take away your car.'" Link to Full Article
Analysis: I'll be the first to admit that I've never heard of Ciudad Mier prior to reading these stories, let alone know about the extent of the violence going on there. This isn't the first time something this extreme has happened there, either. Hundreds of people have reportedly been killed there this year, although there's no official body count. In nearby Nueva Ciudad Guerrero, the town's only gas station has been blown up by narcos, food is in short supply, and federal police forces have moved out - essentially ceding control to the DTOs. On the other side of Ciudad Mier in Ciudad Miguel Alemán, the commander of the state police there had his severed head recently delivered to a nearby military post.
Here's a map image of the area so you can get a better idea of where this is going on. Also, I need to show you something interesting:
You see that large lake in the northwest corner of the map? That's Falcon Lake, where David Hartley was reportedly shot and killed by junior members of Los Zetas last month in a possible case of mistaken identity. So the violent activity in these towns comes as no surprise because we know it's a hotbed of DTO activity.
What does blow my mind is the threats by Los Zetas to kill everyone in the town of Ciudad Mier. The immediate, dramatic, and desperate response by the town tells me these threats were not overestimated, misunderstood, or mistranslated. The threats to kill hundreds of innocent men, women, and children also goes well beyond any traditional definition of activity carried out by mere organized crime.
Here's some raw video of what Ciudad Mier looks like now (i.e. a ghost town), and how its residents are waiting things out in Ciudad Miguel Alemán:
I welcome any civil, logical, and intelligent attempts to convince me that this is just criminal activity and not some form of terrorism. And before you respond, do a little bit of research on the history of the AUC (United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia) and their methods. Just a hint: The AUC had no ideology and no desire to take over the government; they were paramilitaries acting as enforcers for Colombian drug lords. They were also designated a terrorist group by the US government in 2001.