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In response to rampant corruption and extortion at the hands of drug cartels and corrupt policemen, the people of Michoacan formed civilian militias. Armed with hunting rifles and shotguns, these militias (or “autodefensas”) succeeded in expelling the “Knights Templar” drug cartel from their towns. The autodefensas accomplished in one year what the government had been unable to do for decades.
After expelling the cartel, the autodefensas armed themselves with assault weapons from looted narco weapon caches. The Mexican government has demanded they disarm and has sent in the army to collect the weapons. However, disarmament is unlikely as it would expose the townspeople to vicious retaliation from the Knights Templar.
Many of the recovered weapons originated in the U.S. and may be linked to the controversial “Operation Fast & Furious” in which the U.S. government provided assault weapons to the cartels to “track” them.
The autodefensas have rallied around Father Grigorio Lopez, Hipólito Mora and Dr. Jose Manuel Mireles. Dr. Mireles is being “held” in a hospital after surviving an “accidental” plane crash. The situation is still developing.
The Right to Defend Myself: http://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_4015633057&feature=iv&src_vid=xCEWME8egkg&v=r3nIfE0AUys
Journalist reveals Mexican government is linked to drug cartels: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L2xlu2Y_mZQ
Hunting down a drug boss: http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=16f_1389574084
Self-Defense Group Forces Out Most of the Michoacán State Town’s Government, Says It Is Close to Ousting Powerful Drug Cartel
Mexican Citizens Forming Self-defense Groups Against Drug Cartels
Mexican vigilantes clash with soldiers in Michoacan state
In central Mexico’s hills, a battle against a drug cartel
Maps of the conflict and General Info
Gallery: The War for Michoacan
Firefight in Nueva Italia:
The DEA Struck A Deal With Mexico’s Most Notorious Drug Cartel
American government linked to cartels: