Guadalajara, Mexico – One image captures a fierce shoot-out between rival drug cartels, with several lifeless bodies slumped on the street in pools of their own blood. Another shows a gang member hurling a grenade at a police officer. A third features a collection of Kalashnikov and Armalite assault rifles, the weapons of choice for Mexico’s cartel hitmen.
These are not photographs, but children’s drawings depicting the harsh realities of Mexico’s decade-long drug war. They uncover the mental scars borne by a generation exposed to extreme violence, many of whom distrust government forces and admire narco-culture.
Elementary school students produced the drawings as part of an investigation into the effects of the conflict on children in northern Jalisco, an impoverished area plagued by violent crime.
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