A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from April 07, 2010
Murder City (Ciudad Juárez nickname)

Ciudad Juárez (across the Rio Grande from the Texas city of El Paso) achieved the nickname “murder city” in 2010, with the publication of the book Murder City: Ciudad Juárez and the global economy’s new killing fields. Ciudad Juárez’s murder rate steadily increased in the 2000s, mostly from drug gangs.

An article in the April 6, 2010 Miami (FL) Herald was titled: “Ciudad Juárez: Life in ‘Murder City.’”


Wikipedia: Ciudad Juárez
Ciudad Juárez, also known as Juárez and formerly known as El Paso del Norte, is a city and seat of the municipality of Juárez in the Mexican state of Chihuahua. Juárez have an estimated population of 1.5 million people. The city lays on the Rio Grande (Río Bravo del Norte), across from El Paso, Texas. El Paso and Ciudad Juárez comprise one of the largest bi-national metropolitan areas in the world with a combined population of 2.4 million people. In fact, Ciudad Juárez is one of the fastest growing cities in the world in spite of the fact that it is “the most violent zone in the world outside of declared war zones.” For instance, a few years ago the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas published that in Ciudad Juárez “the average annual growth over the 10-year period 1990-2000 was 5.3 percent. Juárez experienced much higher population growth than the state of Chihuahua and than Mexico as a whole.”

More than 60,000 people cross the Juárez-El Paso border every day, which makes it a major point of entry and transportation for all of central northern Mexico. The city has a growing industrial center which is made up in large part by the more than 300 maquiladoras (assembly plants) located in and around the city. According to a 2007 The New York Times article, Ciudad Juárez “is now absorbing more new industrial real estate space than any other North American city.” In 2008, FDi Magazine designated Ciudad Juárez “The City of the Future”. However, the city is also the site of widespread poverty and violence, including an infamous series of unsolved murders of female factory workers. The violence generated by the narco-insurgency translated into some 6,000 killings in 2008. More than 1,600 of them occurred in Juárez, three times more than the most murderous city in the United States. In response, business groups in Juárez have called for UN intervention.

OCLC WorldCat record
Murder city : Ciudad Juárez and the global economy’s new killing fields
Author: Charles Bowden; Julián Cardona
Publisher: New York : Nation Books, ©2010.
Edition/Format: Book : English

Miami (FL) Herald
Posted on Tuesday, 04.06.10
CIUDAD JUAREZ
Life in ‘Murder City’
By GLENN GARVIN

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico—He was happy to see shoppers, the Ciudad Juárez tourist official made it clear, and yet the fact that he had time to sit down for a beer with us in the middle of the day made him morose. It was the week between Christmas and New Year’s, and in happier times, his city would have been swarming with tourists from El Paso. These days, the sight of two lone gringos walking across the bridge had brought him scurrying, waving his ID card like a flag of peace.

“Hardly any Americans come anymore,’’ he sighed. “They’re afraid. And I suppose they should be. Yesterday, a bus driver was shot in front of his passengers. The mayor of Juárez, they’ve tried to kill him three times. Or maybe it’s five. He sleeps in El Paso at night. We’re more dangerous than Baghdad. Can you believe that?’’

Welcome to Ground Zero of the collateral damage of the American war on drugs. Since Mexican President Felipe Calderón obliged his friend George Bush three years ago by vowing to shut down the drug pipeline into the United States, Juárez has turned from a festive tourist magnet into a killing field.

Murders—mostly committed by drug cartels clashing with police and one another—jumped from 300 in 2007 to 1,600 in 2008 to 2,600 last year. Though its streets teem with rifle-toting soldiers—the despairing government long ago turned law enforcement over to the army—Juárez’s homicide rate is 33 times as high as that of New York City.

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Wednesday, April 07, 2010 • Permalink