Mexican Gang-Bangers Fighting in Syria? Not Quite

Danny Benavides
Traces of Reality
March 2, 2014

 

I caught an interesting link in my Twitter feed yesterday that I wanted to share on this blog and ruminate upon. Those of you that are reading this may already be familiar with some of the subjects Guillermo and I have discussed on previous Traces of Reality radio shows and podcasts: the U.S.-Mexico drug war, cartels and organized crime along the border, the police state “solution” that emerges, the military-industrial cryptocracy, national security statolatry, and more recently the faux revolution-cum-proxy war in Syria.

Shit is getting so deranged across the grand chessboard, the border cartel wars are spilling into Syria’s battlefields:

 

First, I believe the title of this video is misleading — and it’s not really a stretch to say so. If the content of this video is to be believed, and we take the cholos at their word, then they’re not really Mexican gang bangers.

The first of the pair that speaks briefly (the shorter guy) identifies himself as “Wino” (sounds like “Winer” or “Whiner” to me, though) and it appears this gangsta has a Facebook profile as well. “Wino” goes on to announce his gang affiliation as the West Side Armenian Power gang (observe the tattoos in the photos), which is based in and around the Little Armenia neighborhood in Los Angeles, California.

The second homie in the video (the taller and louder of the two homies) calls himself “Creeper” and flashes a few gang signs which I’m too ignorant to decipher. He claims allegiance to what I understand as the “G’z Up Trece” gang or “Valley Gang,” neither of which I’m familiar with. I do know, however, that “trece” — Spanish for the number 13 — is used to identify with the Mexican Mafia (being the 13th letter of the alphabet, and also called “La Eme”), a fellow California gang and ally of Armenian Power.

“Creeper” and “Wino” go on to describe themselves: “Puro Sureños putting it down in the Middle East,” “gang-banging in Syria” and generally “not giving a fuck.”  “Sureños” (“Southerners”) and “Sur 13″ gang members affiliate with the Mexican Mafia.  They proceed to haphazardly fire their weapons and offer shout-outs to “Capone,” “Mr. Criminal from Silverlake” (an area in central L.A.), “Crazy Loco” in Pasadena, and “Pink Lady.”

So despite the affiliation with Mexican organized crime, these two cholos are Americans from southern California of all places. After the arrest and trial of an Arizona native and U.S. Army private-turned-opposition fighter in Syria named Eric Harroun, it makes you wonder what the hell’s going on along the border to motivate violent thugs to take their craft to faraway lands.

 

 

Although observers of the Syrian conflict would be wise to note that Brown Moses, a/k/a Elliot Higgins has misled his followers with claims about Assad’s responsibility for chemical attacks, I do agree that the photos from “Wino”‘s Facebook profile demonstrate that these thugs traveled to Syria to fight alongside the Syrian Armed Forces and Hezbollah.

Although less a case of the borderland’s organized crime drug-trade, and more about “war tourism,” this LiveLeak video clearly exhibits the extent to which foreign fighters are pouring into the Syrian war to join both sides of this worsening conflict.