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Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Uncle Academic: "Extent of the crisis in Mexico owing to drug cartels" A News Overview with commentary!
There are many points of interest in these articles. One is the extent of official worry over the precariousness of the Mexican state, and the destabilization of the entire country.
The case could be made that US national security would be better served by legalizing the use of marijuana (and even cocaine), and licensing domestic production and distribution (taking the profit out of drug smuggling, and the concomitant threat to Mexican society as a whole of the drug trade as it is currently constituted). Of course, this would need to be accompanied by a real "drug education" program -- not the myth-riddled concoction we've subjected children to for decades.
Meanwhile, we're seeing a mobilization of the US public for deploying US troops inside the country in the "war on drugs." (The cavalier attitude of Texas Governor Perry towards constitutional concerns [first article below] is pretty chilling.) Also possible is a renewed law-and-order campaign against users.
Since Spring Break is upon us, it's worth noting that the security situation has so deteriorated in Mexico that the State Department is warning US citizens about the risks of traveling there (especially in border areas). See also #9 below.
I've arranged these in reverse order of date of publication. You might want to start with #1 and #8.
--L. (1) In Mexico’s drug wars, fears of a U.S. front Violence that has killed thousands is beginning to cross border, officials say The death toll is spiraling throughout Mexico as a war between the country’s government and the drug cartels intensifies.
Cf. he video clip accessible via this page: "March 1: Secretary of Defense Robert Gates discusses the possibility of the U.S. military helping Mexico fight drug cartels operating near the U.S. border with NBC’s David Gregory on 'Meet the Press'":http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/29452359#29452359.
(4) Source: Mullen offers Obama update on Mexico Head of Joint Chiefs of Staff discusses escalating drug-related violence
"Police have blamed a hike in violence in part on a drug turf war spawned by a Mexican crackdown on drug cartels — local gangs battling over a dwindling supply of smuggled drugs reaching Canada from Mexico."
(7) Mexico under siege amid war on drug cartels More than 5,300 thought to have been killed in 2008, double that in 2007
(11) The Age of Innocents Violence is rising in Mexico's drug war, and the victims include cartel members—and now children. By Michael Miller | NEWSWEEK Published Oct 25, 2008 From the magazine issue dated Nov 3, 2008 http://www.newsweek.com/id/165780