MEXICO: The incorruptible journalist Carmen Aristegui is one of the few voices in Mexico with the courage to consistently speak the truth
Dieter Wieczorek
Wieczorek is a film critic and regular contributor to Modern Times Review.
Published date: November 22, 2019

In the last years, we have learned to not have too many illusions about the state of Mexico and its future. Documentaries like Gianfranco Rossi’s El Sicario, Room 164 (2010) and, more recently, Dark Suns by Julien Elie (2018) have informed us on what happens within a society that is deeply infiltrated by criminal activities on all levels, including the high government, judiciary, police, and military. Of course, we are not simply speaking about corruption, but about systematical torture, murder, and kidnapping, especially women, activists, and political opponents. Prostitution, torture, and murder take place even in official governmental buildings, police stations and military camps. The victims are often buried on private or military grounds never to be found. Where there is no evidence there is no crime is the simple rule. Even parents, friends, neighbours, who ask many questions, or even start to investigate, risk their lives, sometimes even warned by the officials in charge to stop their activities.

No illusions

Gianfranco Rossi documented the perfect crime strategy by a system; working with different groups, each specialized on a special task from kidnapping, torturing, killing, and burying the bodies. Julien Elie brought light to the historical background and the development of cartels as a different kind of criminal group and their interaction with the political, administrative, and executing authorities.

Juliana Fanjul’s Radio Silence is focused on the role of the press and media in this violently perverse context. Indeed a kind of «amnesty» for journalism came to an end around the year 2008. From this date, every year a rising number of disappeared or killed journalists could be observed. One of the sequences shows a very quickly proceeded head shooting in the street, recorded by a control camera. Her film starts with the commemoration of the just murdered influential critical journalist Javier Valdez in May 2017. But the leading line of her …

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