While the world-and especially the United States-remains fixated on the brutal actions and conquests of the Islamic State, few are looking closer to home to see such brutality, sometimes on a larger and more horrifying scale.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) – The United Nations reports that in Iraq, 9,000 civilians have been killed and 17,386 wounded since the Islamic State sprung into the scene of that nation, and the actions of that group in Syria have been just as bad.
However, no one seems to acknowledge the damage that the drug cartels in Mexico do. In 2013, cartels murdered more than 16,000 people in Mexico, and another 60,000 were killed between 2006 and 2012, but these reports are from the Mexican government, which is known to deflate the actual numbers.
Those who speak out against the Mexican drug cartels often find themselves attacked, abused, or even murdered.
Mexican cartels often use car bombings as a weapon and tool of terror
International commentators have called the crimes of the Islamic State unique and barbaric. Beheadings, sex slavery and mass executions are crimes that are unheard of in this modern era they say.
These cartels decapitate hundreds every year and then mutilate the corpses of their victims. They display piles of bodies around towns in order to force compliance from locals. These groups systematically target women and children to intimidate communities, engage intensely in the sex trade, use rape as a tool of war and terror, and post images of their crimes for all the world to see on social media.
These groups recruit child soldiers-some as young as 10 or 11-and train them to be assassins or suicide fighters. They kidnap thousands of children every year to use as drug mules or prostitutes. Some they just kill and harvest for organs to sell illegally.
Often those who call for reforms are brutally targeted. Officials, police, even students who dare challenge cartel rule, none are safe.
The Islamic State’s murder of captured journalists is also appalling, but cartels have murdered almost 60 since 2006.
Even Mexico’s media is silent, bribed or intimidated into complacency.
Right now, the Islamic State is the sexy new threat for the American media. Two Americans have been beheaded, and the group threatens to do so to a third.
But the cartels have killed 293 Americans between 2007 and 2010. They have also repeatedly attacked U.S. consulates in Mexico.