Ciudad Juarez fact of the day

In 2010, the peak, there were at least 3,115 aggravated homicides, with many months posting more than 300 deaths, according to the newspaper El Diario.

But the fever seems to have broken.

In July, there were just 48 homicides — 33 by gun, seven by beatings, six by strangulation and two by knife. Of these, 40 are considered by authorities to be related to the drug trade or criminal rivalries.

And why?:

Authorities attribute the decrease in homicides to their own efforts — patrols by the army, arrests by police, new schools to keep young men out of gangs and in the classroom.

Yet ordinary Mexicans suspect there is another, more credible reason for the decrease in extreme violence: The most-wanted drug lord in the world, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, and his Sinaloa cartel have won control of the local drug trade and smuggling routes north.

The full story is here.

Comments

"The most-wanted drug lord in the world, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman": don't US drones work over Mexico?

First Mexico would never allow US controlled drone strikes, second the n Supreme Court would never allow formal assassination as it is against the Mexican Constitution, third if we did this without permission any Medican government that government would stop all cooperation with the US and the border would turn into actual anarchy that you would not imagine.

Also if we started drone strikes and screwed up we would very likely kill someone's, ie an American citizen's, Abuela or Tia, or even an American citizen, and even the lowliest Mexican peasant could figure out how to find an American lawyer to charge the US with murder. I can't even imagine where it would go from there.

Basically you are callng for an invasion of Mexico.

Hey Roy,
Be careful, apparently it is being considered .

Apparently the US Navy Seals may have green lighted to help in the effort!
http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/08/el-chapo/

Which would probably cause instability in the region.

Aren't a lot of @Roy's concerns obviated if we technically "loan" the drone to Mexico for purpose of said operation?

The Mexican constitution forbids assassination. Resisting arrest is one thing but outright assassination is forbidden, there is an ugly history, remember Mexico has no death penalty and la ley de fuga (shot while trying to escape) is very different. The Mexican Supreme Court would never allow it.

You might as well ask why we don't have summary executions in the US.

The days when the US can invade Mexico at will are long gone. Special Ops troops are another matter, they are far more precise and unlike drones they can clean up after themselves as long as the local authorities cooperate. Like Mexican police and army they can also claim to be attempting to arrest, something a drone with missles on it can't do.

Since we do deliberate drone strikes on US citizens in foreign countries, why would accidentally killing a tourist be a big deal? The President of the US has the authority to murder any person anywhere in the world at any time for any reason, after all.

There would be blowback. It isn't easy for a Taliban militant in Pakistan to take the fight to US soil: travel, entry, language, blending in, etc. But it would be far easier for cartel operatives to move invisibly within a very large Mexican community. Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world, goes the possibly apocryphal Margaret Mead quote.

> don’t US drones work over Mexico?

Why, do they "work" elsewhere?

I remember my dad telling me back in the 70s that strategic bombing is all well and good, but you can't control territory without boots on the ground.

Sure you can. You won't of course, but you could.
Have a look at this gem: http://www.harpers.org/archive/2007/02/0081384
Interesting throughout, but the most relevant part starts at "THE EASY AND RELIABLE WAY OF DEFEATING ALL INSURGENCIES EVERYWHERE".

I'm positive that "strategic bombing" would work just as well as more traditional methods. No boots, hearts and minds required.

I don't think "controlling territory" is the operating goal here.

We and Mexico have lost this round against the cartels. Nieto's election was the marker of this loss. If we don't legalize there will be another round, but on the bright side maybe Mexico can have a breathing space. I hope we are generous in offering those Mexicans who tried to fight the Sinaloa cartel asylum.

Deus misereatur!

Coming of age in Florida in the 1980's I remember something similar in Miami with the "Cocaine Cowboys". Although not nearly as violent as Mexico, for a while Miami was the murder capital of the U.S. and by some claims the world. After a while a sort of equilibrium was reached between various organizations and the murder rate dropped.

I'm sure this has been thought of before; but what's the feasibility of some sort of crop vector that cripples cultivation? Too risky or too difficult?

It has been considered. From the 1960s to the 1980s, the Agricultural Research Service of the USDA conducted experiments in growing coca on Kauai (for the purpose of replacing imported decocanized coca leaf flavor extracts in cola beverages!) and they couldn't make it work. The plants were devastated by native Hawaiian plant pathogens. In the 1990s and 2000s, consideration was given to using these pathogens against coca plants in South America, but the press learned of the story and made a big stink about it, so the plan was shelved. It was a bad plan, because we have no idea what the unintended consequences of releasing these pathogens in the Americas would be. The pathogens are not in any sense specific to the coca plant.

I once read a very interesting ARS report on the Kauai experiments, but after the press got ahold of this story the report was removed from the net. I wish I'd saved a copy. I could hardly believe anybody would try to grow coca in a major pot-growing region for the trivial purpose of flavoring soft drinks. They must have been smoking crack or something.

Something along these lines? http://www.apsnet.org/edcenter/advanced/topics/PopGenetics/Documents/Nelson.pdf

That's a much later document from the time when developing a pathogen for coca was the objective. The report I read was an internal ARS document summarizing the project to develop a domestic source of soft-drink flavoring. That earlier document mentioned cooperation with the Coca-Cola company.

Erik Holder tied up in court?

Are women in Ciudad Juarez still being murdered in relatively large numbers?

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