Monday, November 26, 2012

México: Why Did Federal Police Fire 152 Rounds at US Embassy Vehicle?

According to The Associated Press, on August 24, south of Mexico City, a ballistic-resistant US Embassy vehicle with diplomatic plates was the target of an unprovoked armed attack by Mexican federal police who fired some 152 rounds at the vehicle.

Although this attack on a diplomatically protected vehicle occurred nearly three months ago, the reason for such a massive police attack on a friendly nation remain elusive. Five police commanders reportedly ordered the fourteen officers involved in the attack to lie about what occurred that day.

At the time of the attack, two Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officers and a Mexican Navy captain were traveling in the embassy vehicle. The two CIA officers were wounded in the attack. The naval officer was uninjured. The result is that the Mexican federal officers involved face attempted murder charges.

COMMENT: Now, here is the interesting part: The accused police officers contend that they were in uniform, working in marked police vehicles and responded to small arms fire from the embassy vehicle.

Yet, details of the Attorney General's investigation, released yesterday (November 25) confirm that the officers were in plainclothes, in unmarked vehicles, including two personally owned vehicles and under orders of their commanders.
The fourteen officers have been held over for trial. One commander was charged last week with giving false information and released on bail. The other four are legally contesting their arrest warrants.
Federal police insist they were investigating the kidnapping of a government official the morning of the shooting, even though assistant federal prosecutor Victoria Pacheco Jimenéz said kidnapping is a state crime. Moreover, there is no evidence that federal police were asked to help in the case.
All of the gunfire came from federal police weapons, discounting police statements that the embassy vehicle fired first.

Admittedly, both México and the US have enormous economic interests at stake, yet in a country where police corruption is fully institutionalized, it is embarrassing that both countries have not pushed for the truth much earlier than now.

Of course, the lingering question is: What if the two CIA officers had been killed? Would the Mexican response be any different?

Given my suspicious nature, it is entirely possible that the federal cops that fired some 152 rounds at the embassy vehicle without provocation may well have known in advance that the SUV transporting the CIA officers and the Navy captain was fully armored.

With such information, particularly in light of the fact that drug cartels in México wield incredible power, it is entirely possible that the embassy vehicle was attacked, knowing that the occupants would likely survive a formidable armed attack.

The end result of the attack was the likely confirmation that some federal cops are being paid by the cartels with the intent of sending a strong message to the US Government as to the influence they wield.

One can only hope that the AG's investigation, in the course of three months, would have connected the dots. Then again, perhaps they are afraid to.