March 24, 2023
with Chris Hedges
TheRealNews on Mar 24, 2023
More than 150 journalists have been killed in Mexico since 2000. The case of Regina Martinez, an investigative journalist assassinated in her home in the state of Veracruz in 2012, is emblematic of this war being waged against the press. Katherine Corcoran, former Associated Press bureau chief for Mexico and Central America, joins The Chris Hedges Report to discuss her book on the case of Regina Martinez and the wider context of the killings of journalists in Mexico, In the Mouth of the Wolf.
On April 28, 2012 an intruder broke through the metal door leading into the garden patio of the investigative reporter Regina Martínez. He apparently surprised the Mexican journalist in her bathroom, where her body was discovered. The diminutive reporter, barely five feet tall, tried to fight off her attacker – skin was found under her fingernails. Her jaw was broken with brass knuckles. A rag was wrapped around her neck. She was apparently suffocated to death.
She was one of one hundred and fifty journalists murdered in Mexico since 2000, 15 in the first eight months of 2022. These reporters, poorly paid, often working for local online publications, courageously expose the collaboration between government officials, the police and the powerful drug cartels. Martínez, who was killed at age 48, was working on an investigation into the corruption of two successive governors – Fidel Herrera and Javier Duarte – in her home state of Veracruz, considered the most dangerous place in the world to report.
In Veracruz, drug traffickers and their accomplices have executed hundreds of people, including teenage dealers, entire families, farmers and politicians. Even young women who attended their sex parties. Many of these bodies ended up in unmarked mass graves. Martinez refused bribes and ignored threats. Unable to be bought off or intimidated she, like many other Mexican journalists, was murdered. The current Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has asked that the homicide case be reexamined.
Katherine Corcoran, the former Associated Press bureau chief in Mexico, in her book In the Mouth of the Wolf: A Murder, a Coverup, and the True Cost of Silencing the Press, uses the case of Martinez to look at a country where in many towns and cities there is no separation between government, the police, the military and organized crime. She chronicles what happens when the path of “fake news” and obfuscation, something that not only plagues Mexico but the United States, takes its natural course.
Joining me to discuss her book In the Mouth of the Wolf: A Murder, a Coverup, and the True Cost of Silencing the Press is Katherine Corcoran.
From the archives:
“These reporters, poorly paid, often working for local online publications, courageously expose the collaboration between government officials, the police and the powerful drug cartels.” What a contrast between these absurdly brave people and those in the corporate media. My local rag here in the UK, the Northern Echo, has since its founding in 1870 wasted its pages on highlighting the offences of the working class while ignoring the much greater crimes of the powerful whose victims are the working class. Journalists here are held in contempt, and rightly so. There needs to be a socialist revolution in journalism as in wider society.
Thanks, Becky, so agree.