Has Mexico Raided A Jihadi Camp?

Over the weekend media reports surfaced that Christopher Ashcraft, a U.S. State Department “consular officer” posted to Guadalajara, Mexico had been shot and wounded by Zafar Zia. Zia was described in news reports as a 31-year old American citizen who was born in India.  

A Mexican police source told The (UK) Guardian that Ashcraft was shot in his car as he exited a parking garage and that he suspected the shooter was a professional killer. “That’s not an easy shot,” said the unnamed Mexican official. “He was probably aiming for the head but he missed as he (Ashcraft) leaned over to put his ticket in the machine.” 

The purported motive for the shooting was a “visa dispute,” but that is at this point speculation. A “visa dispute” is an odd motive, given that an American citizen, even a naturalized one, would not need a visa to return to his own country, nor would he obtain a visa for Mexico at the U.S. consulate. 

What is more interesting, and has not been widely reported is that Zafar Zia, although of Indian heritage, is a Muslim. What’s more Zafar is an Arabic Muslim given name meaning “victory” and Zia is a Muslim surname associated with Pakistan, Bangladesh and the Muslim regions of India. 

Reports conflict as to whether Zia is a recent convert or was raised a Muslim, however, as our friend Patrick Poole observed, India has the second largest Muslim population in the world after Indonesia.
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