What Do You Have To Be Thankful For? Don Alejo Garza

Cross of DeathNot to be too gloomy on a day such as this, but take a gander at this cross of death, first published in Reforma, and copied on the site Borderland Beat (HT Hotair). These are the total deaths, for just this year, due to Mexico’s drug wars. As of the 4th of November, the number slain was 6,587. Simple extrapolation suggests the grand total for 2010 will top 7,000.

Or 7,001 after they reckon Don Alejo Garza. Have you heard about this hero? Last week, a Mexican gang came and told him to leave his ranch, they were taking over. The thinking behind the narcotraficantes‘ request was simplicity itself: they wanted his land, thus it belonged to them. Raw numbers argued that they were more than he, and that was sufficient reason. They would return the next day to claim what they believed to be theirs by virtue of marshal superiority.

Don Alejo, 77, a self-made man “known for keeping his word”, gave the next day off to his staff. He wanted to be alone when the murderers came.

The trucks entered the ranch and took up positions surrounding the house. The gunmen got out of their trucks, fired shots in the air, and announced they came to take possession of the ranch. They were expecting the terrified occupants to run out, begging for mercy with their hands in the air.

But things didn’t go as expected. Don Alejo welcomed them with bullets; the entire army of gunmen returned fire. Don Alejo seemed to multiply, he seemed to be everywhere. The minutes would have seemed endless to those who had seen him as easy prey. Various gunmen were killed on sight. The others, in rage and frustration, intensified the attack by swapping out their assault rifles for grenades.

The artillery wasn’t enough. Don Alejo killed four and wounded two more, may they die soon, before succumbing himself to the attack. The few remaining gunmen ran off, scared that the sounds of their prolonged attack had awoken the interest of the Mexican marines, which it had.

When the marines arrived they discovered Don Alejo had spent the night fortifying his home, placing weapons near each potential entry point so that they would be readily accessible. He wouldn’t run, he wouldn’t cower, he would fight for what was his. He fought for what was his, for what was right. He died like a man.

It shouldn’t have happened, but it did. I am thankful for men such as Don Alejo and the example he set. May he rest in peace.


  1. Juan

    The Mexicans would solve a lot of problems if their people had the right to keep and bear arms.

    It’s a disgrace that we allow such a socialist hell-hole at our border.

  2. dearieme

    The hellhole is surely largely created by the disjunction of US citizens having a huge appetite for drugs whereas their government favours Prohibition. If, for instance, US citizens were suddenly to become law-abiding, these Mexican difficulties would largely evaporate and Mexicans could return to worrying about problems of their own making.

  3. Of course, Dearie, it’s all the bad Americans’ fault. Mexicans cannot and should not be held accountable for their own actions. Canadians yes, Mexicans no. The latter are little and brown and hence innocent in the eyes of the superior race.

  4. commieBob

    Amen Mr. Briggs, amen.

    The situation reminds me of ‘High Noon’. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Noon

    I feel a rant coming on so I’ll leave it at that. God bless Don Alejo Garza, may he rest in peace.


    @Briggs — Thanks

    @dearieme — Oh dear!

  6. @Briggs: Great comments re: Don Garza. A tragedy.

    @Juan: Don’t think we have anything to say about it. It’s their country.

    @dearieme: Thank you for the latest opinion from the crown. We here in the colonies would be lost without your wisdom and counsel.

    Ron Number: Spot on.

  7. Francisco

    The situation in Mexico has become unreal. In some states things have deteriorated to the point where the security forces are completely unable to offer any protection. You are on your own. Extortions, kidnappings, robbery, assassination of politicians, widespread murder, is the suff of common daily life. The entire system is corrupt from top to bottom. Groups of people are found murdered pretty much every day. Many go unreported. Others are never found. The official figures are almost certainly too low. Back in August 72 people, including many minors and pregnant women, were executed en masse in a ranch in the same State where Alejo Garza died. An 18 year old from El Salvador was wounded in that massacre, then played dead, and somehow did not get the finishing shot. He was the only survivor. After a prudent wait keeping still among corpses, he got up and walked about 14 miles, wounded, until he found some soldiers, who at first did not believe his story until they decided to go check it out.
    In the capital, things are not so bad on the murder front because there is a high concentration of security forces. Still, kidnappings and robbery are extremely common, often performed by fake policemen. It is a very GOOD idea to carry at least a couple hundred dollars worth of pesos with you, if you can. They may save you if you are robbed. You may be robbed pretty much anywhere, including being stopped on the road by a police car that turns out not to be a police car, and asked to hand over your cash. If you don’t carry any cash with you, or very little, they can easily get angry and kill you on the spot. Life is cheap. It is not a “socialist” country as somebody mentioned. It is a country with many millions of pretty desperate people who have little or nothing to lose, and therefore no fear of losing it. Law and order has practically disappeared in some parts. There is something called “blog del narco” where people (including the narcos themselves) contribute all kinds of lurid written and visual evidence of what is going on. No wonder so many try to get out of there at any cost.

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