Monday, September 28, 2009

"How to end the slaughter in Juarez?"

The title to this post is the headline to a troubling Houston Chonicle story about how resistant drug violence in Juarez has proven to military and police interference. It's also arguably a much more pressing foreign policy question for the United States than anything happening in Afghanistan. The article opens:
Seemingly impervious to any treatment, murder has settled into the sinews of this border city like a pestilence.

The thousands of federal soldiers and police injected into Ciudad Juarez haven't proved a cure. Neither have the remedies of sociologists, economists, criminologists or psychologists. Nor have the prayers, potions and petitions of its haggard citizens.

Gunmen claim dozens, sometimes scores, of new souls each day, hundreds by the month. There's no end in sight.

Bolstered by U.S. encouragement and money, President Felipe Calderon has made Juarez a laboratory of his strategy to militarily end the bloodshed and the drug trade alike. But rather than a showcase of success, Juarez has become, by many accounts, the poster child of failure.

“We saw the army come in and not finish anything,” Hugo Almada, an economist who's written books on Juarez's haphazard growth, said of this year's military offensive to end the slaughter. “So the question is now what?”

RELATED: From NarcoNews: Merida Initiative Police Screenings "Inefficient" and "Ineffective"

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh boy....Here comes the 'lets legalize drugs argument'. Isn't that what your fishing for??

kaptinemo said...

Anon 11:54, what would you likely suggest? More of the 'same old, same old'? How many more lives and money are we going to throw into this beast's mouth, and have only prisons (that we can't afford to pay for) being shat out the other end to show for that 'investment'?

The DrugWarriors have finally got the chance to 'fight the DrugWar like a real war!', and what's happening? The very same things that's been predicted for years, by Grits and who knows how many others: an insurgency. A guerilla war. And the narcos aren't going to be good sports and in a stand-up/knock-down fight...a fantasy that far too many DrugWarriors have wet dreams about. Sorry, but they won't be so accommodating. They've already proven that.

When you want to put out a fire, you don't throw gasoline on it. Which is just what's happened in Mexico. No, if you're serious about putting out that fire, you starve it of oxygen. In this case, the fire is fueled by illicit drugs sales profits. Return the system to what we had, prior to some so-called progressive's misguided attempt to engage in social engineering, and you starve the narcos of their profits. They'll dry up and blow away.

Of course, if your paycheck is tied up in maintaining the DrugWar, then you have an understandable bias against ending it. But that bias is costing us several score billions of dollars every year, at a time when Joe and Josephine Taxpayer are losing their jobs, can't pay taxes to fund the DrugWar, and need what little money the Gub'mint has left for basic survival like unemployment insurance. When the matter is explained to Joe and Josephine that way, take a guess what they'll want to do with that money being squandered when they need it. You only get one guess, though.

Red Leatherman said...

@11:54
Looks like in your mind, legalization is the only answer. There may be someone that can come up with a better idea but hey, I like the way your thinking.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

I noticed nobody but you raising the subject, 11:54.

Anonymous said...

Don't lie Grits...you know that was your angle all along. I just opened the door..

Legalizing drugs is not the answer. The whole 'if you can't be them, join them approach' is complete nonsense...unless your liberal of course, then that is the solution for everything.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Well, if you know my opinions AND yours, 5:12, then you don't need me here - you can have that conversation on your own. It's certainly easier for me that way.

I've been writing about Mexico and the cartel wars for years; IMO what I've written speaks for itself, but you're welcome to read into it whatever you'd like.

Anonymous said...

It ain't going to matter unless we get a handle on Ahmadinejad and Iran, especially in the wake of the Iranians decision to test fire missiles today.

How many of you out there think Iran is going to bend over and do what they are told? When they don't, that's when another war will start making this thing in Mexico look second rate.

dirty harry said...

I've often thought that one way to "starve" the cartels is to do a better job of catching the traffic as it enters this country. I know that means cutting off most of the funds and resources we send to Mexico, but I think if we used those resources to fight the drugs as they come on to our own soil and specifically STOP the flow of drugs coming across the border, we could do a better job of "starving" them. The cartels would be forced to carry on more of their drug trade south of the border, and that wouldn't be nearly as profitable.

Anonymous said...

"I've often thought that one way to "starve" the cartels is to do a better job of catching the traffic as it enters this country."

I agree with you, the only problem there has never been any political will by either party to do it.

Even after 9-11 where many of the hijackers were here illegally on student visas, we still have illegal aliens here on student visas as witnessed by the arrest of the Jordanian for plotting to blow up a Dallas skyscraper.

Why does government allow this? Lack of political will.

Grits will be posting on this subject for years as long as the status quo in government remains in control. At least it gives him something to continue to blog on.

Pirate Rothbard said...

05:12:00,

Legalizing drugs is not the answer. The whole 'if you can't be them, join them approach' is complete nonsense...unless your liberal of course, then that is the solution for everything.

You don't have to beat addicts, they will beat themselves. We can legalize drugs and fill the pen up with a whole mess of people on other charges. These laws are totally unnecessary.

RAS said...

If we inspect everything that comes across from Juarez and adequately patrol the border for 2 or 3 hundred miles in either direction the combatants will starve out or move to a more profitable business location.