The Mexican Drug War
By: Blake Cohen
INR2002 – Spring 2013
Word Count: 3800
In 2006, Mexico began to crack down on drug trafficking operations in union with the United States. Why all of the sudden? In regard to that question, my paper will include a history of events leading up to this sudden crack down on drug trafficking, from its start in the 1960’s until today. After the history of the drug war, I will discuss the main states involved like the United States and Mexico itself. Along with their main goal of eliminating drug trafficking all together, although it is a very high expectation. Mexico has sent out 50,000 soldiers that are being paid less than a burrito vendor, in attempt to lessen the drug trafficking. This is very ineffective because they are easily swayed by money to “look the other way”. Once I have given an elaborate history of events of how this all came about. Then it is absolutely necessary to explain why. The way I will go about this is by defining then analyzing these events from the theoretical perspectives: Realism, Liberalism and Constructivism. Arguing that because of its focus on the inherent evils, and the state being the most important actor in international relations. Realism best describes the events of the drug war since 2006. In addition I will explain why Liberalism’s focus on intergovernmental organizations, cooperation and economic complex interdependence and Constructivism’s focus on norms and the fact that people spread ideas; in order to have world peace we must change our current narrative of the world today do not accurately describe these events. Lastly, I will explain what the United States and Mexico have done since 2006 to attempt to stop the drug war, and the current status on the Mexican Drug War. Along with the events that are occurring today, I will provide my prediction as to what the future has in store for the war. To start things off, in 2006 previous Mexican president Felipe Calderón initiated a huge drug trafficking enforcement organization along with the United States. During this time, the United States gave Mexico labor and funding to help aid this drug trafficking problem. The main focus of the United States and Mexico was the trafficking that was crossing into the United States. The late 1980s began the targeting of United States drug users by Mexican drug cartels. This happened because the United States destroyed the Colombian drug cartels and quickly to jump in their place were the Mexican drug lords. During Calderón’s term from 2006 to 2012, he sent over 50,000 soldiers into the streets of Mexico, spent billions of dollars on training and the equipment, very persistently tried to convert the police force and judicial systems and become better partners with the United States. Unfortunately, the Mexican Police are not paid a sufficient amount by the government therefore they are relatively easy to persuade. On the website Insight Crime, Patrick Corcoran states “an underpaid officer could double or triple his salary by simply agreeing to look the other way.” In a ploy to avoid this corruption, Calderon increased the use of military in the fight against drugs. Later to find out, this strategy was flawed and violated some serious human rights abuses. A result from a report from the human rights watch stated more than one hundred and seventy cases of torture, thirty nine disappearances and twenty four extrajudicial killings. Never the less, the bad guys don’t always win and between the United States and Mexico, they ended twenty five of the top thirty seven most wanted drug cartels. In direct relation with ending these cartels, drug related violence became amplified. According to the Mexican government’s numbers, as of September 2012, a total of 47,515 drug users have been killed in drug related crimes since Calderón’s military assault against drug trafficking. Worse yet, more than 3,000 Mexican soldiers and police officers...
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