Fourteen unarmed soccer players and fans were gunned down at a soccer field in Honduras early October 31, 2010; most likely murdered by overzealous fan of rival team.
Summery of Events of the Halloween Day Massacre
The modern sports of this modern era are often called the pent-up barbarianism of society being let out. Sometimes that barbarianism strikes out in different ways, such as the massacre in San Pedro Sula, Honduras early on October 31, 2010. Halloween has a particularly sinister edge this year.
A vehicle drove on to the field, startling the soccer players. Gunners opened fire on the soccer players at short range, some of the bullets were directed at those watching the practice. Some victims may have been initially shot, then run over. The vehicle drove off before authorities could arrive.
Reports are still coming in, but initial announcements say that ten men were killed on the scene, with gruesome gunshot wounds, and an additional four were severely wounded, dying between leaving the soccer field and arriving at the hospital. There are numerous other casualties, most of whom are in critical condition. The Maras Cartel, an illegal drug transporting cartel that numbers in the tens of thousands, is suspected.
The motive for this killing is unclear; there are two major possibilities:
1) Soccer players discover drug cartel members, most likely of the local Maras Cartel, transporting cocaine or other illegal substances north destined for America. The cartel members promptly shot all the soccer players, to silence any possible witnesses
2) Maras Cartel members kill for revenge,fun, or simply to make a point.
3) Rival soccer team/fan kills soccer team
Most people would dismiss the #3, the silly Americans, but I believe it is the more likely option.
The Cartel Discovery Theory
If the hypothetical cartel members, most likely from the Maras Cartel, were shipping drugs, they would choose back roads or go through safe territory. Driving past a soccer field, full of soccer players and their cheering fans and family, is the exact opposite of this. The cartel members would know better than to transport in such a public area, more importantly they would know not to go around shooting people unless it is absolutely necessary. Killings on the scale of the Halloween Day Massacre tend to gain international attention.
Eliminating the Cartel theory leaves the much more plausible Revenge and Rival Fan Theories.
The Maras Theory
There have been massacres on this scale in San Pedro Sula before the Halloween Day Massacre. There was a four man attack on a local shoe factory on September 8, 2010, which left eighteen men dead. Honduras’s weak army and semi corrupt police force have been unable to contain the violence. The Maras Cartel is suspected in this previous attack, it is quite plausible they carried out this second attack on Halloween for similar reasons.
Those reasons remain unclear, until there is further information this theory cannot be accepted or dismissed until evidence surfaces to validate it.
The Rival Fan Theory
To analyse this theory we cannot just look at the football team, but the country of Honduras, where e the killings took place, and how football, what they call soccer, is embedded in the culture. Football initially gained popularity in Honduras, and in Latin America, roughly the same time it did in Europe. That is right after the Second World War, troops had played the gain as they had fought around the world and as they dispersed the game immigrated with them. This is why football is so popular internationally.
Football took such a firm grip in Honduras that they went to war over a football game. This who read that right, they called it The Football War, fought in 1969 over a World Cup match between the two countries. It lasted for four bloody days,three thousand people were died and the economy of Honduras collapsed. That is how serious this country is about football.
I imagine an overzealous, and most likely psychotic, fan wanted to prove his loyalty to his soccer team, pick up an assault rifle, and went over to the football field. Then he painted the grass red. The majority of the football team was eliminated, along with a few pesky fans.
Reflection and Condolences
It darkens my thoughts to think that anyone is capable of such cruelty. The problem that resulted in these killings is that far too many people have guns and the lack of brains to use them liberally. There is no solution to this problem, short of recalling weaponry all together, which would be as pointless and futile as Prohibition was, and much more lethal. These killings are a tragedy, a black swan that could not have been predicted. Our hearts go out to the families of the deceased, our prayers to the fallen.