'Narco-Protests' Paralyze Mexican Border Crossings

Authorities believe anti-military protesters are in the pay of drug cartels
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 19, 2009 10:15 AM CST

(Newser) – Civilian protesters suspected of being in the pay of drug traffickers have blocked Mexican bridges to the US in recent days, demanding that the military leave their cities, the Dallas Morning News reports. Officials see the demonstrations—dubbed "narco-protests"—as a worrying new development amid a wave of violence already being likened to civil war.

Recruiting protesters is an easy task, said a newspaper editor, given growing border unemployment. "These are people without AK-47s, without grenades, who can take control of international bridges, and the government doesn't do anything about it," added one Mexican security expert.