The Fight to Save Juárez: Life in the Heart of Mexico's Drug War [NOOK Book]

Overview

The city of Juárez is ground zero for the drug war that is raging across Mexico and has claimed close to 60,000 lives since 2007. Almost a quarter of the federal forces that former President Felipe Calderón deployed in the war were sent to Juárez, and nearly 20 percent of the country’s drug-related executions have taken place in the city, a city that can be as unforgiving as the hardest places on earth. It is here that the Mexican government came to turn the tide. Whatever happens in Juárez will have lasting ...
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The Fight to Save Juárez: Life in the Heart of Mexico's Drug War

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Overview

The city of Juárez is ground zero for the drug war that is raging across Mexico and has claimed close to 60,000 lives since 2007. Almost a quarter of the federal forces that former President Felipe Calderón deployed in the war were sent to Juárez, and nearly 20 percent of the country’s drug-related executions have taken place in the city, a city that can be as unforgiving as the hardest places on earth. It is here that the Mexican government came to turn the tide. Whatever happens in Juárez will have lasting repercussions for both Mexico and the United States. Ricardo Ainslie went to Juárez to try to understand what was taking place behind the headlines of cartel executions and other acts of horrific brutality. In The Fight to Save Juárez, he takes us into the heart of Mexico’s bloodiest city through the lives of four people who experienced the drug war from very different perspectives—Mayor José Reyes Ferriz, a mid-level cartel player’s mistress, a human rights activist, and a photojournalist. Ainslie also interviewed top Mexican government strategists, including members of Calderón’s security cabinet, as well as individuals within U.S. law enforcement. The dual perspective of life on the ground in the drug war and the “big picture” views of officials who are responsible for the war’s strategy, creates a powerful, intimate portrait of an embattled city, its people, and the efforts to rescue Juárez from the abyss.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Psychologist and U.T.-Austin instructor Ainslie (Long Dark Road) presents an unrelenting look at the drug cartel battles of Ciudad Juarez, just over the Rio Grande from El Paso, Tex. Juarez’s mayor, José Reyes Ferriz, first learned of the coming war between the established Juarez cartel and the Sinaloa cartel shortly after he was elected in late 2007 and he spent his entire three-year term trying to curtail the killings, which in some months “surpassed those in war-torn cities like Baghdad.” Corruption was so endemic in the municipal police force that Reyes invited in the army, with 5,000 federal troops arriving in March 2009. The municipal police force was officially disbanded, then re-formed later that year as the “new police.” Two facts stand out among the continual descriptions of assassinations. The first, often repeated, is that the violence is driven by American drug consumption, and the second is that the vast majority of assault weapons used by the cartels are from the U.S. Despite a wide-ranging intervention ordered by the Mexican president, following a massacre of innocent youths in the Villas de Salvárcar neighborhood in January 2010, there is no Hollywood ending to this report—only a continuation of the violence. Although not easy to read, this is an important work for any reader concerned about Mexico. Agent: James D. Hornfischer, Hornfischer Literary Management. (Apr.)
Kirkus Reviews
One of the clearest accounts yet of the causes for the violence in Ciudad Juárez and the convoluted politics behind Mexico's attempts to keep it from dragging the whole nation down. Ainslie (Education/Univ. of Texas; Long Dark Road: Bill King and Murder in Jasper, Texas, 2004, etc.), a psychologist and filmmaker with dual Mexican and American citizenship, interviewed scores of Juárenses over some of the worst years for violence (2007-2010). By chance, they coincided with the mayoral term of José Reyes Ferriz, who is effectively the central figure of the narrative. A member of Mexico's deeply entrenched Institutional Revolutionary Party (known by its Spanish initials PRI), Reyes Ferriz was at odds with the party's old regime leadership as represented by the governor of Juárez's state of Chihuahua, José Reyes Baeza. This political rift stemmed as much from Mexico's decade-old experiment in democracy, which allowed parties other than PRI to win elections, as it did from the increasingly violent wars for control of the drug traffic to the United States by rival cartels based in Juarez and Sinaloa, which Mexican President Felipe Calderón has tried to fight with the national military. It's a complicated story with tangles of threads leading all over the place--from PRI's repression of student and leftist dissent in the 1960s and '70s to the expiration of the U.S. assault weapons ban in 2004 that led to a radical spike in the appearance of deadly AR-15 automatic rifles in the hands of cartel operatives. Though occasionally miring the story in repetitious regurgitation of news clips, Ainslie does best when focusing on the often heartbreaking stories of the long-suffering people of Juárez. A hard-nosed, cleareyed analysis of a legacy of institutionalized corruption and its dire consequences for human lives.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780292748712
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 589,171
  • File size: 5 MB

Meet the Author

A native of Mexico City, Ricardo C. Ainslie is an award-winning psychologist-psychoanalyst who uses books, documentary films, and photographic exhibits to capture and depict subjects of social and cultural interest. His books include Long Dark Road: Bill King and Murder In Jasper, Texas; The Psychology of Twinship; and No Dancin’ in Anson: An American Story of Race and Social Change. His films include The Mystery of Consciousness; Ya Basta! Kidnapped in Mexico; Looking North: Mexican Images of Immigration; and Crossover: A Story of Desegregation. Ainslie teaches at the University of Texas at Austin and also has a private practice with adult patients.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Prologue

1. Christmas in Juárez
2. The Saulo Reyes Affair
3. A Meeting in Chihuahua
4. The Strategist
5. Public Relations
6. Patiño
7. La Cima
8. The Mistress
9. The General
10. Twenty-Five Hundred Soldiers
11. La Línea
12. The Human Rights Activist
13. Román
14. The Pajama Chief
15. The Journos
16. Forty-Eight Hours
17. Martial Law Undeclared
18. Civics Lessons
19. The Other War
20. Addicts
21. Los NiNi
22. The Eagle’s Hill
23. Villas de Salvárcar
24. All the President’s Men
25. The Visit
26. Cibeles
27. No Accidents
28. The Federal Police
29. The Election

Epilogue
List of Interviews
Index

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