El Centro

Written and directed by Matthew Heineman, “Cartel Land”, also available in Spanish as “Tierra de carteles,” is a timely and graphic documentary.

"A sophisticated farm-to-arm supply chain is fueling America’s surging heroin appetite, causing heroin to surpass cocaine and meth to become the nation’s No. 1 drug threat."

Blog post | September 16, 2015 10:08 AM | Comments(1)

Millions of Central Americans live outside their countries, with 80 percent living in the US, according to research into the connections between food insecurity, violence, and migration.

This SWJ report assesses the nature of U.S. assistance to the Mexican government's recent efforts to combat organized crime.

The rise of vigilante citizen militias in the western Mexican state of Michoacán has been a key component in the narrative of the government’s failure to secure its citizenry.

There is no one panacea to counter the violence and instability in Jalisco, and it will take time for the Operation to make an impact.

Despite criticism from pundits, President Santos has pragmatically led Colombia through a difficult era, and currently has it poised to reach a lasting internal peace.

Journal Article | August 30, 2015 11:59 AM | Comments(4)

Our team has spent the last four months studying ungoverned spaces and the unique characteristics that will impact potential future operations and has initiated a network modeling technique.

This article examines the current and emerging security situation faced by Mexico’s petro-energy sector.

Small Wars Journal and Small Wars Journal-El Centro are pleased to announce an updated line up for the Small Wars Journal-El Centro Fellows for 2015.

In the 21st century, there has been an apparent shift in the operations of Mexican criminal organizations since the onset of democratization.

Cameron H. Holmes, Organized Crime in Mexico: Assessing the Threat to North American Economies. Lincoln, NE: Potomac Books, 2014, 200 Pages.

Blog post | August 6, 2015 06:57 AM | Comments(1)

"U.S. officials worry that a confluence of powerful drug-trafficking cartels, terrorist groups and an insecure southern border poses a strategic threat."

Tony M. Kail, Narco-Cults: Understanding the Use of Afro-Caribbean and Mexican Religious Cultures in the Drug Wars. Boca Raton: CRC Press, 2015. 345 Pages. $59.95.

Journal Article | July 16, 2015 10:44 PM | Comments(1)

Fifteen police officers were killed in a ‘military-style’ ambush in Jalisco on 6 April 2015. The attack resulted in the highest death toll in a single attack since 2010.

Journal Article | July 15, 2015 04:41 PM | Comments(1)

Emili J. Blasco, a Washington correspondent for ABC Spain, authored a groundbreaking new book focusing on the corruption in Venezuelan politics.

The real issue is whether the Mexican public and authorities can tolerate such a setback.

Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman broke out of a high security prison on Saturday night for the second time.

They hid in plain sight, the homebrew gun club for a powerful new gang, the Jalisco New Generation Cartel.

The US Army can expect a future of potential or protracted confrontation among state, nonstate, and individual actors who will use violence to achieve political, religious, and other ideological ends.

This paper sheds light on the relocation of power and control over security from state to non-state armed actors.

Drug Trafficking, Corruption and States: How Illicit Networks Shaped Institutions in Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico A Small Wars Journal--El Centro and Vortex Foundation Book

Mexican Cartel Tactical Note #24: Gendarmerie Ambushed in Ocotlan, Jalisco State by Narco Commando—5 Killed, 8 Wounded

“Splinter Gulf Cartel drug groups fight for control of Matamoros/Reynosa.”Mexico DailyReview. 14 February 2015,

Journal Article | March 15, 2015 08:23 PM | Comments(6)

Many in the academic and policy communities share the notion that organized crime groups operate similarly to legitimate businesses.