Mark in Mexico is just back from a visit to Nuestra Señora de los Pobres church where I went in search of Flavio Sosa. I didn't see hide nor hair of him. I stood below the church's annex where the Fat Man and his cohorts are supposedly holed up and he didn't bother to even come to a window and give me a wave. All of the curtains are pulled tight, that's for sure.
I'm not sure why he and the rest of the APPO leadership chose this particular spot to seek refuge. The church sits at the corner of two busy boulevards. What's more, sitting directly diagonal to the church is a federal courts building. I'm sure that after this past Saturday evening's APPO rampage which targeted both federal and state courts buildings, the federal judges wouldn't mind a few PFP detectives underfoot, watching the church. Beside the federal court building is another empty building currently for rent. I would imagine there are a few dozen PFP types in there, also watching the church 24/7.
I cruised around the streets checking parked cars and only spotted one guy in an SUV that might have been PFP, but he was parked directly in front of the annex and he was alone, so that's doubtful.
There have been some strange occurrences in the past couple of days, all very close to my office. Either yesterday or Tuesday, the date is unclear, a full busload of passengers (35-50 people) was stopped just 3 blocks from my office in broad daylight, at 10:30 am. A car with 6-8 men inside pulled over in front of the bus and blocked it. Three or four of them got out and forced their way onto the bus. The driver pulled a revolver, a very rare event. In fact, I have never seen nor heard of an armed bus driver before.
He failed to get off a shot however, and was dragged out of his seat and thrown to the floor. Then, in full view of the horrified passengers, he was shot twice in the back. Some passengers forced the rear door of the bus open and fled. Others crouched down in their seats and hoped for the best. One lady said that she witnessed the first shot, then just covered her face with her hands and prayed.
The men then dragged the wounded and bleeding driver out of the bus, threw him in the car, and off they sped. Passengers reported that a woman with a cellphone and riding a motorcycle was also involved. When the men fled with the wounded driver, one of them hopped on the motorcycle with the woman and they rode off together.
Then, just a few minutes later, at the medical school at San Felipe Hospital at the Fountain of the 7 Regions, just 5 blocks from my office in another direction, a "student" was beaten and then snatched right in front of the school's main entrance. The "student", aka "El Gato", is a known APPO thug. When other students tried to come to his aid, the three men who were doing the beating and snatching fired a few rounds in the air to scare off the would-be rescuers, and then they made their getaway, accompanied by the bleeding "El Gato".
Minutes later, the commander of the Policía Ministerial himself, Manuel Moreno, arrived at the school to lead the investigation. Very strange. Minutes after that, the State Attorney General, Lizbeth Caña, arrived at the school. Stranger still.
Then, the next day when the virulent anti- Governor Ruiz newspaper Noticias de Oaxaca reported this incident, it spelled the Attorney General's name thusly: Lizbeht Cañada. What's with that? The "Lizbeht was an obvious typo but what's with the "Cañada"? And Noticias, in a more usual and typical fashion, described Manuel Moreno's presence as "supposedly to investigate" the incident and Caña/Cañada's presence as "very curious".
The dirty war has begun.
Several people in a group today told me that one person very high on the list of those to fall is the rector of Juarez University. Because he is a non-violent type, he won't be "disappeared" or beaten and kidnapped. But every action, decision, purchase order and work contract that Francisco Martínez Neri has made or authorized to be made in the past, present and future will be examined with a fine toothed comb to find some reason, real or imagined, to bring him down. And you know how these things go (think Patrick Fitzgerald / Scooter Libby). If they try hard enough they'll come up with something, even if it's pure fiction.
I would imagine that El Gato and an APPOite bus driver both wish a fine toothed comb was all they had to worry about right now.
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TAGS: Oaxaca, Mexico, Oaxaca teachers strike, Flavio Sosa, APPO, El Gato