In Mexico City, a memorial wall for the missing and the dead.
La Glorieta de los Insurgentes is a fantastically large roundabout in the dead center of the Mexico City conurbation, containing within itself a major-thoroughfare intersection, underground shops, a large bus station, a subway station, a variety of pedestrian paths, and a rather heartbreaking memorial wall. The wall commemorates the desaparecidos — the disappeared — of whom present-day Mexico possesses over one hundred thousand, mostly in the past decade. When you look up the causalities of the post-2006 violence in the Mexican polity’s inexorable breakdown, this figure tends to get conflated with the known dead. It causes some confusion. Make no mistake, the desaparecidos are all dead too: but there is no body to confirm it, no corpse, no remains to bury, to visit, to mourn. There is only a loved one, or a friend, or a neighbor, who was here — and then not.
The number of the desaparecidos is much larger than the number of the confirmed dead. It speaks to the weird quality of Mexico’s agony. Nearly everywhere else in the world wracked with ultra-violence can point to a corpse-strewn landscape. In Mexico there is this sort of vanishing, as if the most morally debased criminals imaginable are also fastidious. Leave no trace.
So we have this.
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