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Mexico Sending 5,500 Cops and Military Forces to Area to Fight Violent Drug War

After 12 federal Mexican agents were recently found tortured and dead, what choice was there but to call for a full court press? This drug war in Mexico is only going to get uglier. The U.S. has stepped up its effort to help, but it needs to step it up even more. More people are going to die on both sides of the border.

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By Ken Ellingwood
Los Angeles Times
MEXICO CITY — Mexican authorities announced plans Thursday to send 5,500 police officers and military personnel to the western state of Michoacan to confront a violent crime syndicate offering some of the fiercest resistance President Felipe Calderon’s government has faced since launching its war on drugs 2 1/2 years ago.

About 1,000 extra police officers were deployed Thursday before officials outlined the broader buildup.

The move, which included providing helicopters and other equipment, represented a show of resolve in Calderon’s home state, a major drug-trafficking corridor where 16 police officers have been killed recently in well-coordinated attacks.

Following the assaults, police have patrolled in convoys and curtailed nighttime operations as a way to avoid further casualties.

One Mexican pundit said the recent aggressiveness by the drug-trafficking group La Familia was the equivalent of the surprise 1968 Tet offensive by communist forces in the Vietnam War.

Michoacan is a key front in the drug war.

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