Another Mexican anti-cartel blogger by online name “Rascatripas,” (or “Belly Scratcher”), was murdered. His decapitated and tortured body was found in the Mexican border town of Nuevo Laredo this week.
The man was identified in a handwritten sign left by his killers as a manager of the social networking website Nuevo Laredo en Vivo (New Laredo Live). The site is used by residents to denounce drug crime and provide real-time warnings about roadblocks the cartels have set up or gun-battles they wage.
The bloody note with the body warns – ‘This happened to me for not understanding that I shouldn’t report on the social networks.’
Nuevo Laredo Live site managers deny that the victim was one of them. They called him “a scapegoat” who had been killed “to silence the voices of Nuevo Laredo.”
At least one local reporter says there’s “no proof” yet that the decapitated man found Wednesday was actually murdered for his online activity. And administrators for Nuevo Laredo en Vivo now say that “Rascatripas” wasn’t one of theirs. “Negative,” they tweet (thanks to Xeni Jardin for the translation, and for the tip). “He was not our partner, he is confirmed to have been a scapegoat to scare others. The person executed is not a collaborator with our site, but this was without doubt an attempt to silence the voices of Nuevo Laredo.”Source: www.wired.com
This is the fourth death related to anti-cartel bloggers.
- Marisol Macias Castaneda, who wrote on the same site as Rascatripas, was found beheaded in the same location two months ago.
- A couple of weeks earlier, two bodies were found hanging from a pedestrian overpass with a sign that read: ‘This will happen to all the Internet snitches.’
Social media has become an important means for ordinary Mexicans to strike back at the cartels. Civilians have taken to real-time reporting of trouble spots on the country’s dangerous northern highways. Using Twitter, locations of firefights between cartels and government security forces, or risky cartel checkpoints, are broadcast by volunteers to wired motorists.
“Do not be afraid to report,” said Anon4024 at Nuevo Laredo en Vivo earlier today. “This is how we citizens can make a difference in this city.”
Another contributor, Danlaredo, warned against giving out personal information: “No need to worry, no way of knowing our data since WE’RE ALL ANONYMOUS, and the only way to know them, is that we disclose ourselves so PLEASE, follow the rules … and do not give your personal INFORMATION …. please!!!!”
Kudos to the bloggers for their work!