Mexican Drug War Thesis

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Mexican Drug War

Mexico is waging a hard battle against the drug cartels. Widespread corruption, threats and intimidation by the drug lords have resulted in a crisis situation. There is every hope that the positive initiatives undertaken by the Mexican president, the anti-corruption task force and the military intervention will help crack down the drug mafias. It is in the interests of the U.S. government that Mexico remains a stable and flourishing democracy and hence a coordinated effort is called for. This shared responsibility is the key to Mexico's success in its battle against the Drug Cartels.Download full Download Microsoft Word File
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TOPIC: Thesis on Mexican Drug War Assignment

Mexico is bogged deep in a drug battle. Mexico, one of the major producers and the largest drug suppliers of cocaine, marijuana and met amphetamines to the United States, is experiencing a crisis situation. As much as 90% of all cocaine entering the U.S. market comes via Mexico. [Colleen W. Cook] the rising number of crimes and drug related criminal activities have created a total chaos in the law and order situation of the country. Also more than 60 U.S. citizens have been kidnapped in Nuevo Laredo, in drug related incidents in the recent years. The increasing power of the drug cartels and the conflict between these gangs has caused severe problems for the citizens. In Dec 2006, the country's president Felipe Calderon launched a war against these drug cartels and part of the initiative was an extradition treaty with the U.S. Since then thousands of Mexican troups are deployed in the battle against the drug cartels. Despite these active operations the violence and death toll is on the rise. Reports indicate that in 2007 alone more than 2500 people were killed in violence perpetuated by these drug cartels and the number rose to more than 4000 for the year 2008 [Stephanie Hanson] and 5800 in 2009, [Bernd Debussman] giving us an indication of the alarming situation and the dangers for Mexican citizens. Corruption in the police force and the judiciary, Arms Trafficking from the U.S. are factors that have aided the uncontrolled growth of the Mexican drug cartels. A brief overview of the problem and the policies that are undertaken by the government to eradicate the drug cartel menace would provide a better insight into this important social issue.

Mexican Drug Cartels

According to the Mexican government there are seven established drug cartels in the country. The most important of them being the Gulf, Juarez and the Sinaloa cartels. The Gulf Cartel has its presence in 13 states including Nuevo Laredo, Miguel Aleman, Reynosa, Matamoros, Nuevo Leon and Michoacan. The Juarez cartel has presence in 21 States within the country including Culiacan, Sinaloa; Chihuahua, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon; Ciudad Juarez, Ojinaga, Chihuahua; Mexico City, etc. The Sinaloa cartel is well established in 17 states including several centers in the Mexico City; Tepic,

Nayarit; Toluca, Cuautitlan and most of the state of Sinaloa. [Colleen W. Cook] Some of these cartels have formed a pact between themselves to have better control of the transit regions. Conflict between the different alliances is one of the main causes of violence. The alliance between Sinaloa, Juarez, and Valencia cartels for instance is now well-known as the 'The Federation' and has excellent cooperation for their drug trafficking operations. The U.S. drug intelligence Center Reports that the Mexican cartels "use their well-established overland transportation networks to transport cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine, and heroin -- Mexican and increasingly South American -- to drug markets throughout the country." [Colleen W. Cook]

According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, Mexican cartels have begun to dominate the illicit U.S. drug market. As the reports states, "[m]any of these groups maintain their affiliation with the larger groups in California and Mexico and maintain some level of coordination and cooperation among their various operating areas, moving labor and materials to the various sites -- even across the country -- as needed." [Colleen W. Cook] . Mexican drug cartels have now begun to outshine the Columbian drug cartels. In fact the Mexican drug cartels have established relationships with street gangs such as Latin Kings and Mara Salvatrucha and prison gangs within the U.S. To distribute their drugs within the United States. As per the recent U.S. Department of Justice report as much as $18 to $38 billion comes back into Mexico from the sales of illegal narcotics in the U.S. [Andre D. Selee] Part of this money is used to buy arms from the U.S. To support their operations back in Mexico. Mexican armed forces have captured several high caliber machine guns, grenades, and rocket launchers from the drug cartels. In fact the drug cartels are engaged in an Arms race to gain the upper hand in the main drug trafficking routes.

Effects on the Public

The sheer nature of the killings, abductions and torture are scarring the Mexican public who do not repose much confidence in their government to protect them. As Mexican cartels also indulge in trafficking people, auto thefts and money laundering it is becoming increasingly dangerous for the public. Mexican women are abducted and smuggled across the border as sex workers. The increase in the number of sex crimes by the drug gangs and the callous attitude of the local police make life dangerous for Mexican women. Also, the increasing number of 'abductions for ransom' clearly indicate the insecure social structure in the country. Drug related crimes have shoot up 300% between 2007 and 2008. On an average 20 drug related murders and around 30 to 50 kidnappings take place in the Mexican city. [Tom Stilson] With the drug cartels employing any means including killing children and beheading people there is an air of panic among the general public.

Police Corruption

Mexican police officers are widely believed to be corrupt and known to accept bribes from the drug organizations. While this certainly cannot be denied it is also to be understood that the money and arms power of these cartels far exceeds that of the police force. Particularly in the border cities the Drug lords reign supreme. An example of the growing dominance of the drug cartels is the storming raid on a police station in the border city of Tijuana in which the station was sprayed with more than 1200 bullets sending out a clear warning message to the officers, "Welcome to Tijuana. Our guns are bigger than your guns.." [Manuel Roig-Franzia] Under these circumstances officers are left with no option but to accept the bribes and survive or face imminent death. According to the Mexican government study as much as 2000 U.S. made weapons make their way into Mexico everyday. As Thomas Mangan, a spokesman for the ATF says, "You're looking at the same firepower here on the border that our soldiers are facing in Iraq and Afghanistan," [Manuel Roig-Franzia]. In 2008, the acting federal police chief was killed by the drug gang. Mexican police force is literally intimidated by the arm power of these drug organizations and this explains the widespread corruption and the general ineffectiveness in their anti-drug operations. "That climate of fear was highlighted this month when the U.S. Border Patrol reported that three Mexican police chiefs serving along the frontier had crossed into the U.S. And asked for political asylum after receiving death threats." [Martha Neil]

While the country's Attorney General Medina Mora is sparring no efforts in the battle against the drug lords, even his office was involved in corruption scandal with 35 officers of his SIEDO (Intelligence Unit of the organized crime division) convicted of accepting bribes from the cartels. The recent arrest of the former anti-drug chief 'Noe Ramirez Mandujano' on accusations of accepting bribes to the tune of $450,000 every month has revealed another ugly face of the Mexican police force. As Mr. Mora disclosed, this amount was paid to Ramirez "in exchange for providing information about investigations and ongoing actions." [Ken Ellingwood] This arrest was part of the 'operation cleanup', which the government had begun to eradicate corruption that is stifling the battle against drug organizations. Certainly Mr. Mora has a daunting task ahead of him in cleaning the rampant corruption in the state police force.

Military Intervention

With the widespread corruption and the inadequacy of the police force in tackling the drug menace the government has pressed the national Military into the battle against the drug cartels. As the president Mr. Calderon said last year, 'The government of Mexico has a firm and determined commitment to fight against organized crime, and not only organized crime, but against the corruption that organized crime generates'. [Ken Ellingwood] for this purpose more than 45, 000 military personnel and over 5000 federal police force were pressed into service against the drug mafia. [Ken Ellingwood] So far, these operations have resulted in the seizure of seventy metric tones of drugs and arrest of around 57, 000 people of which 46,000 are drug related cases. However, the saddening fact is that more than 12,300 Mexican people have succumbed to drug related violence over the last few years. Civilians… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Mexican Drug War" Thesis in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Mexican Drug War.  (2009, October 29).  Retrieved July 30, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Mexican Drug War."  29 October 2009.  Web.  30 July 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Mexican Drug War."  October 29, 2009.  Accessed July 30, 2021.