The "black market" accounts for a quarter of Mexico's GDP and employs more than half its workforce. The numbers illustrate a failure of public policy and raise a red flag for the future.
SWJ El Centro, or "downtown" in Spanish, is our town square for analysis and discussion of Latin America's guerilla wars and criminal insurgencies. More about El Centro here.
Recent El Centro Journal Articles and SWJ Blog Posts:
Gov. Rick Perry said Wednesday that sending National Guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border will defend not just his home state but the entire nation.
The lessons of counterinsurgency and nation-building in Colombia can also apply to the Arab world.
Mexican Cartel Tactical Note #21: Cartel Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)
"This monograph demonstrates that a combination of high quantity and high quality USSOF engagement bolstered Colombian capacity."
The Transnational Gang Threat - Part 1: Joining Forces to Meet the Challenge - FBI
This work marks the 3rd Small Wars Journal-El Centro anthology.
A top United States general in charge of protecting the southern border says he’s been unable to combat the steady flow of illegal drugs, weapons and people from Central America.
How Government Structure Encourages Criminal Violence: The Causes of Mexico’s Drug War by Viridiana Rios Contreras
"Mexico's apparent unabated rates of homicide, kidnappings and assassinations, with targets that include public figures and journalists, continue."
The Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) has released a new, comprehensive report, titled Mexico’s Police: Many Reforms, Little Progress.
Mexico Is Not Colombia: Alternative Historical Analogies for Responding to the Challenge of Violent Drug-Trafficking Organizations - RAND Corporation
"Three enforcers hired by Mexico’s biggest drug cartel flew from Los Angeles to Minnesota last month, kidnapped two local teenagers, and then tortured them for hours."
The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment spent 12 days in Mexico, and confirms that almost “every Mexican police force” abuses detainees.
Beyond Cocaine Cowboys: Looking at Security in Latin America from a Different Perspective
“The problem is that today’s ‘bad guys’ have learned to operate in this gap between cops and soldiers.”