Soldiers Wounded in Drug Gang Grenade Attack
A Google News report highlighted the activities of two suspected cartel gunman as they wounded two soldiers in a grenade attack on army housing in northern Mexico. The move is considered to be the latest sign that drug gangs are increasingly using open warfare tactics against the military.
The grenade was fired from a rifle at a camp where soldiers live with their families, wounding two soldiers, leaving relatives unharmed. The camp is located outside the Gulf Coast city of Tampico, according to the Defense Department, which claims such moves are the result of cartels acting out of desperation in the face of army successes in the drug war.
"Members of organized crime staged a cowardly attack with a rifle-fired grenade," the department said. "These types of aggressions demonstrate that the structure of organized crime has been eroded, provoking desperate acts like attacking families of the armed forces."
Army positions continue to come under attack, with instances escalating in recent weeks in the northwestern states of Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon, both bordering Texas. Cartel gunmen have reportedly ambushed military patrols on highways and thrown up street blockades in front of army garrisons.
The increased fighting has occurred as a result of the split between the Gulf cartel and its former ally – the Zetas drug gang. According to industry experts, the gangs may be trying to get the army out of the way of their fight over control of drug trafficking routes in the region.
Up to this point in the latest wave of confrontations, there has not been a soldier killed. Drug gangs continue to suffer heavy losses, including 18 assailants killed in seven different shootouts in one day last week.