Today's The Washington Post has a lengthy report from Juárez by William Booth and Steve Fainaru, who have together delivered some good reporting from the country in recent weeks. It offers lots of tidbits about the militarization of the city (for itstance, I didn't know that soldiers are now writing traffic tickets) and the benefits the recent deployment has brought, and also offers a more complete picture of the human rights abuses that have resulted. The latter is certainly worrying, and I expect many more similar stories to come trickling out of Juárez in the coming months. (There's also been some of that here in the Laguna in the last couple of weeks.) For Juárez residents, I guess the question is whether the increased risk of abuse at the hands of a soldiers a reasonable price to pay for such a significant drop in drug violence? I suspect that for most the answer is yes. I hasten to add that I am not excusing incidents like those mentioned in the story, which are truly horrible. A certain spike of such complaints is inevitable in a situation like Juárez, and it's incumbent upon the army to address the complaints publicly and openly, rather than just sweeping it under the rug.
The article also mentions the panel of anonymous judges tasked with processing criminals arrested for drug crimes, which has always struck me as one of the more interesting recent innovations in Mexico's criminal justice system.