Two American Teens Shot to Death Across the Border in Mexico

February 11, 2011 06:00

There is much more violence and death right at our border than  there is in Egypt. It is so commonplace it rarely even makes the news. Yet the Obama administration assures us that the border is under control.

The Americano

For many people in the United States the border between the United States is little more than a line drawn on a map. For those who live near the border it is often a matter of life and death.

Authorities in Texas confirmed that three teenage boys were shot to death in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez over the weekend. At least two of them were U.S. citizens and one was a high school student in Texas.

Carlos Mario Gonzalez Bermudez, 16, was a sophomore at Cathedral High School in El Paso, said Nick Gonzalez, the Roman Catholic brother who is the principal. Another victim, Juan Carlos Echeverri, 15, had been a freshman at the private all-boys Catholic school last year but left to study in Ciudad Juarez, Gonzalez said. Both were U.S. citizens, he said.

The third teenager was identified as Cesar Yalin Miramontes Jimenez, 17.

According to the Associated Press, the school principal said Gonzalez Bermudez lived in Ciudad Juarez and commuted each day across the border. He said 20 percent of the 485 students enrolled at Cathedral are from Ciudad Juarez.

“It’s a lot of pain, a lot of sorrow, a lot of tears, a lot of coming together as a community to try to hold each other up and to try and make sense today,” Gonzalez said. “How do you make sense of this meaningless tragedy? Hopefully this can really empower us to make a positive change in the border community because their deaths will have no meaning otherwise.”

Many Ciudad Juarez residents travel across the border on a daily basis for work or study. Some Mexicans live in El Paso for safety reasons and commute to Ciudad Juarez.

For them the violence in Mexico is not across the border. It is part of their daily life. A reality they have to accept.

Ciudad Juarez city has become one of the world’s most dangerous cities amid a fierce turf war between the Sinaloa and Juarez drug cartels. More than 3,000 people were killed last year in the city of 1.3 million residents. More than 34,000 people have been killed in Mexico since 2006 when the government declared war on the drug cartels.

The Americano/Agencies

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