Monday, July 30, 2012

Mexico's Soriana grocery chain targeted by bombers

A harbinger of coming urban unrest?

*Video clip added*
No, this man is not an obscure Mexican politician. He is Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov (1890-1986), a Russian diplomat and Soviet minister of foreign affairs during the long reign of Joseph Stalin. He supposedly disliked the term intensely, but homemade incendiary devices known as Molotov cocktails (typically just a bottle or can filled with gasoline) were named after him during World War II. They've been popular with insurrectionists and terrorists ever since.

Today Mexico's largest grocery chain, Soriana, which has 600 stores nationwide, got a taste of the famous cocktail. In Guadalupe, part of the Monterrey metropolitan area in northern Nuevo León state, three men in a car tossed the bombs into a neighborhood store about 7:00 a.m. today. No one was injured, but damage was extensive.

Soriana has been much in the news this month. Like supermarkets everywhere, the store encourages its customers to carry a free shopper's card. Every time a purchase is made the customer earns points which can be saved or used to reduce the bill at check out. Defeated leftist presidential candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador of the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) claims that PRI bought the election by passing out tens of thousands of Soriana cards carrying prepaid credits, allegedly ranging from 100 to 1,000 pesos ($7.50-$75.00 US). PRI has flatly denied the claim, which the Washington Post referred to earlier this month as "Soriana-gate." Rising protests against Enrique Peña Nieto, amid charges of "Soriana-gate." That issue, as well as other PRD/López Obrador allegations of election fraud, are pending before a federal court, which is expected to rule on the claims in early September. Manuel López Obrador fires in all directions, demanding a new election; López Obrador will take his case to Inter-American tribunal if vote challenge fails.

Authorities have not identified suspects in this morning's attack. Many will be watching and wondering if it might have been the brainchild of PRD operatives, or of some who have called for violence to stop Mexico's president-elect from being sworn in on Dec. 1. YoSoy 132 discusses civil disobedience to stop Enrique Peña Nieto from taking office. Molotov cocktails are synonymous with rioting and urban violence, and neither can be good for Soriana or Mexico in the four months just ahead.

Aug. 1 - Soriana blasts Manuel López Obrador, accusing him of inciting violence
July 21 - Mexico facing greater political crisis this year than in 2006, says commentator
July 11 - Memo to Andrés Manuel López Obrador: "Ya basta, señor"

"Where are the 38% who voted for Enrique Peña Nieto? They're lining up at Soriana."

Images Copyright 2011-2012 Edward V. Byrne d/b/a Mexico Gulf Region Reporter (MGRR).

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