Mexico

Close the books on Felipe Calderon's sexenio

Thumbnail image for mexico-bodies-hanging.jpgEnrique Peña Nieto was sworn in Saturday as the new president of Mexico. How did the six-year term of Felipe Calderon go? Daniel Hernandez in the LA Times:

For average Mexicans, the extreme violence seen during this sexenio -- as a six-year presidential term is called -- was psychologically and emotionally grueling, particularly for children, experts say. In many parts of Mexico, a culture of fear settled over the population.

Overall, more than 100,000 people were violently killed in Mexico during this term, government figures show. The number of those killed directly tied to the drug war may never be known, as the lines blurred between drug-trafficking violence and violence spurred by the general impunity enjoyed by the drug lords.

The national human rights commission says more than 20,000 people are missing in Mexico. Torture is also believed to be widespread nationally.

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Dozens of journalists have died during the Calderon term. Although counts differ because the professional ties of the journalists at the times of their death have varied (see this map), Mexico is now considered one of the most dangerous places in the world to report the news.

Hernandez, the former LA Weekly staff writer, lists off the toll of the Calderon years. It's almost unbelievable.

Photo: Execution victims hang from a bridge in Nuevo Laredo in May.


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