Documentary Reportero Showcases The Struggles Of Journalists

Yesterday (Sunday July 1) Mexico held elections with the apparent winner being Enrique Peña Nieto of the Institutional Revolutionary Party or IPR, the former ruling party of Mexico.

According to Fox News Latino, Repeating a popular belief of many Peña Nieto supporters, Martha Trejo, 37, of Tampico said, “He’ll stabilize the cartels. He’ll negotiate so they don’t hurt innocents.”

Peña Nieto in his victory speech vowed he won’t make pacts with organized crime, but rather will focus on curbing violence.

But how will a new administration handle the escalating rise in crime and murder by drug cartels who have murdered tens of thousands including Mexican journalists who dare cover Mexican organized crime ?

On June 14 Víctor Báez Chino became the latest journalist to be killed in Mexico where 85 have been killed and another 16 have disappeared over the last decade according to Reporters Without Borders.

A note was found near Chino’s body, as often has when other journalist have been found murdered giving fair warning to the Mexican media, if you cover us you will die.

This time the note from the criminal syndicate Los Zetas read “This is what happens to those who betray us and try to be clever.”

In light of the killing of so many journalists over the years a documentary titled Reportero has been made according to the website CPJ which focuses on the story of the Tijuana-based weekly magazine Zeta, one of the only publications to regularly publish investigations on organized crime, drug trafficking, and corruption in Mexico’s northern states since its founding in 1980.

Zeta’s staff has born a particularly bloody toll for its reporting over the decades: Héctor Félix Miranda, co-founder of the magazine, was assassinated in 1988, and co-editor Francisco Ortiz Franco was murdered in 2004. The magazine’s other founder, J. Jesús Blancornelas, survived an assassination attempt in 1997. The attempt failed only because the lead assassin was killed by one of his own gunmen when a bullet ricocheted and struck him in the eye.

The documentary will be featured this fall as part of PBS-TV’s POV series.