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I confess to being puzzled. In a post on this forum I read that getting hit in crossfire between narcos and their opponents “can happen anywhere” (Can it? Not where I live). From reading this forum it appears that life in Mexico is pretty normal bar the odd mishap. Yet in the Guanajuato press this week I read of threats by organized crime to attack the Cervantino, further threats against Guanajuato fiesta celebrations, death threats against members of the Guanajuato state government, the rescue of a kidnap victim from a house in Jardines del Oriente in Guanajuato capital. Organized crime is active in Silao, Irapuato, Celaya, Salamanca, Leon, etc. I read, (and Guanajuato capital). In San Miguel the army is or was on the streets. In Celaya and Irapuato burned and tortured bodies are turning up, as of this week In Celaya there are an average of five telephoned extortion demands a day. In a small city in Guanajuato state (I’d have to look up the name, maybe Acambaro), two women were lifted from the street (kidnapped) in broad daylight last week. The citizenry is saying that nothing is being done, and the forces of "law and order", the police,are -to what extent I wouldn't try to say- corrupt and cowed.

A safe retirement haven for wife and self or .......................................?????????

And I forgot to say that las "instalaciones" de la Universidad de Guanajato were also specifically threatened. So, all very good for one's peace of mind.
 

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The power struggles between rival cartels for the US drug market continues while the Mexican government uses the military and federal police to increase the pressure. Corrupt officials and law enforcement authorities are often in the mix. Sadly, little is being done north of the border to stem the demand and the current economic crisis adds more desperate people to the fray on both sides of the border. The news from Phoenix, and other cities, rivals your stories.
Where is that "hand basket?"
 

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Perhaps I could have expressed better the ideas in my post, replied to by RVGRINGO. My point was, missed I think, that with violent crime raging and all that stuff going on in Guanajuato capital, how can a safe and fairly "normal" life be possible.
 

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It is "safe and normal" because we are not involved in the consumption or trade in drugs. We go about our lives and never see 'shoot outs' or 'decapitations'. They occur, genereally in the dark of night, in the drug cartel's hot spots and between rival cartels and/or authorities. Normal people simply read about it in the papers or on the TV news reports.
Sadly, the US media generalizes by referring to 'Mexico' in its over sensationalized news reports. If they were to recognize the size of Mexico and its 31 states, or the unique border zones and a few other 'hot spots', the real situation would be much clearer. As you've stated, "Getting hit in the crossfire doesn't happen where I live." That is true most everywhere.
 

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I second what RV ****** says. The most dangerous thing I have seen in my time in Mexico are those towers of fireworks they set up at all the fiestas. Other than that I have felt totally safe.
 

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Hahah! Those firework towers are pretty scary!

Very well said RV ******.
and i lived in Nueva Italia, Mich for 6 or so months and that's like drug lord city. i never saw any voilence.
 

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Hahah! .......Very well said RV ******. and i lived in Nueva Italia, Mich for 6 or so months and that's like drug lord city. i never saw any voilence.
I think we can assume that Nueva Italia, a small community far from any border, in the middle of nowhere, ( no offense intended), is not one of the drug cartel's major centres of operation. Maybe it's just a summer cottage place for the thugs. But if it's really "drug lord city", it sounds like Mexico's problems are more widespread than even the press NOB are telling us.

I'm not trolling, nor am I attempting to beat a dead horse about this issue of personal safety, but POPOTLA is a ******/gringa who lives in Mexico, and he/she is concerned. Although my wife and I still fully intend to move full-time to Mexico within the next year, (if and when we can sell our house in Canada in this depressed real estate market), we too continue to be concerned about reports of increasing lawlessness.

Of course anyone who dabbles in drugs in Mexico or who hangs around tough bars at 2 in the morning is asking for trouble. And yes, anyone living in a country with tens of millions living at or below the poverty line has to expect a certain level of property crime, and take appropriate measures to protect themselves from that kind of activity. That's not the concern, for the same situation applies in much of the world.

The concern is that the apparent breakdown of any semblance of law and order that already exists in some parts of Mexico will spread. In fact, there are plenty of signs suggesting that's exactly what is happening. The killings, robberies and kidnappings to date may well have been attributable to the drug trade, but there now exists a huge (I don't think that's an exaggeration) group of individuals who exist totally outside the law. Increased efforts and some successes by the police and army may force these criminal gangs to look for other sources of revenue. If things get too hot in the drug trade, these characters aren't just going to go back to being unemployed, or work in low-paying menial jobs. The fear is that gringos, most of whom stick out like sore thumbs, will become targets because of the perception that all of them have lots of money. That isn't true, of course, but it's perceptions that count. Wealthy Mexicans have, for decades, taken precautions against kidnappers. Now, the threat of kidnap has spread to middle class Mexicans, not only in DF but in most other cities in Mexico. To ascribe all such serious crime in Mexico to "the drug trade" is, in my opinion, very wishful thinking. And to keep blaming US, Canadian or European drug consumption as the source of the problem is absolutely no consolation.

I appreciate those expats who continue to insist that none of the problems have arisen in their areas. I can understand their impatience that this issue just won't go away.

Although the issues are not at all the same, I'm reading a book now that includes anecdotes about ethnic east Indians living in east and central Africa during the 1950's and 60's, (Uganda, Kenya, Ruanda, Tanzania, etc), many of whom were
2nd, 3rd, 4th or even 5th generation African-born. An ethnic east Indian from the West Indies, visiting in Africa at that time, regularly asks his hosts: "What will you do when the crunch comes?" Very few knew what he was talking about or, if they did, denied there were any problems.

I don't mean to suggest that gringos in Mexico will ever be discriminated against for ethnic or linguistic reasons. (I wish the same could be said for Mexicans living in the US and, to a lesser extent, in Canada). To my knowledge, gringos have generally been welcomed and treated with respect in Mexico. But if spreading lawlessness in Mexico starts to be felt in the ****** community, it will be a lot less attractive place to retire.

And, no, I don't think discussing these issues is alarmist. It's the lawlessness and violence that doesn't seem to want to go away, not the discussion of it.
 

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Then, why do we all feel safer in Mexico than elsewhere. We're certainly not a crop of dummies; in fact, most of the expats living here permanently are experienced world travelers, many having worked abroad for years before retiring to Mexico. Those who haven't traveled as much and/or lack facility with other languages may feel more threatened, simply because they can't communicate as well or have not developed a sense of 'situational awareness' that comes from years of foreign experience.
That said, the entire developed world is experiencing difficult economic times and many folks don't seem to see the writing on the wall; it isn't good and most of us are too old to expect any real improvement in our lifetimes. In the USA, it has taken some 50 years to dig this hole and there are those who say it has been dug too deep.
Now, the forum does not permit us to delve into the politics of the situation, so we'll have to refrain from that.
The point is simple: Mexico is quite safe for tourists and expats residents. End of discussion.
 
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