Drug War of the Day: The hacker collective known as Anonymous released a video statement recently, warning Los Zetas — one of Mexico’s most notorious drug cartels — that it would release identities of its collaborators and names of its money-laundering fronts if the syndicate did not return a kidnapped member of the group to his home.
The alleged accomplices are taxi drivers, journalists, and police officers — referred to in the video as “police-zetas” — who Anonymous claims are working with the cartel, or against “honest authorities like the army and the navy.”
“We can´t defend ourselves with a weapon,” the statement goes on to say, “but if we can do this with their cars, houses, bars, brothels and everything else in their possession…It won´t be difficult. We all know who they are and where they are.”
The video appears to set November 4th as the last date for compliance with the ultimatum.
Austin-based global intelligence company Stratfor warns that Anonymous may be in over its head, and any publication of names would “most certainly” result in bloodshed.
The Zetas have a well-documented history of attacking online critics.
However, retired DEA international operations chief Mike Vigil calls the statement “a gutsy move,” and says the Zetas should take Anonymous seriously. “By publishing the names, they identify them to rivals,” he says, “and trust me, they will go after them.”
It would be futile to try and stop Anonymous. They will learn that the hard way.