by Shawn Gupta
On November 5th, nine people were killed in Sonora, a province in northern Mexico. Among the victims were six children and three women, all of whom were Mormons and American citizens. Eight children were found alive, but only a few of them were left unscathed. Seven of the children were flown to a hospital in Arizona to be treated. It is believed that members of a local drug cartel were responsible for the attack. The Mexican government believes that a drug cartel mistook the victim’s vehicles as those of a rival cartel’s.
This incident highlights a growing problem in some parts of Mexico: rampant crime, gang-controlled areas, and a low amount of security. The attack started at around 9:40 am, but Mexican authorities arrived at the scene at around 6:15 pm. The nearest army base was 160 km away, leaving the surviving children to fend for themselves. At the same time, this attack is making many Mexicans wary of how effective President Obrador will be in tackling crime. Despite the numerous campaign promises he made about lowering crime and lowering the power of cartels, it seems as if crime is growing, and cartels are growing.
Many people offered their condolences on the internet including President Trump. Trump also offered to deploy US troops in Mexico, but this proposal drew sharp criticism from both the Mexican government and some members of Mexico’s Mormon community. Some Mexican officials lashed out at Trump, saying that these cartels are powerful partially because of the American made weapons that are being smuggled across the border into Mexico in massive quantities. Events such as this attack may become more common if the drug cartels continue to gain power in parts of Mexico.