Small Wars Journal

The Propaganda War of the CJNG and AMLO

Thu, 04/22/2021 - 11:34pm

The Propaganda War of the CJNG and AMLO

Daniel Weisz

Edward Bernays describes modern propaganda as a “consistent, enduring effort to create or shape events to influence the relations of the public to an enterprise, idea or group.”[1] Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) bases his campaign and political strategy on the idea of a “fourth transformation.” The first three transformations are the independence, the reform, and the revolution. AMLO promises a new transformation that will stay in the historical memory of Mexicans, and his goal is to end corruption and to have a government with republican austerity.[2] AMLO also promised a new strategy based on human rights to combat drug trafficking to guarantee peace and tranquility when he entered office in 2018. AMLO referred directly to a propaganda video created by the Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG) that shows a column of armed men with paramilitary uniforms cheering for the leader of their cartel Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes “El Mencho,” avowing he refused to fall into provocations and declare war on DTOs (Drug Trafficking Organizations).[3] AMLO blamed the violence and these types of videos on the past government’s abandonment of the population and repeated his now-famous slogan of “hugs and not bullets.”[4]

The concept of DTOs building hospitals and schools to win the hearts and minds of citizens is not new as cartel leaders from Pablo Escobar to Joaquin Guzmán “El Chapo” have engaged in these tactics. Howard Campbell studies how DTOs have generated systems of ideas and have transformed narco-propaganda into a central element of the Mexican cartel culture. Campbell asserts that narco-propaganda is part of a strategy designed to capture parts of the Mexican state and society and reinforce control over security forces and territory and legitimate their actions.[5] Campbell describes the primary forms of narco-propaganda as spectacles of symbolic violence, narco-messages, narco-videos, narco-music, and censorship and control of the media. He describes this type of propaganda as a form of “psychological warfare and terrorism, designed to intimidate, dehumanize and dominate.”[6]

The CJNG has taken a unique approach to this scheme and has published several carefully crafted videos showing off its military might. For the first time in Mexican history, it directly challenges the government. America Guevara examined how videos from DTOs posted online used to be aimed mainly at rival cartels.[7] The challenge is not simply against the Mexican security forces, but it is a challenge against the idea of the fourth transformation and a new strategy to combat DTOs. Eduardo Guerrero is an expert in public security that heads an agency on violence, organized crime, and security politics called Lantia Consulting. Guerrero explains that these challenges are unique as the CJNG exposes the damage they can cause if they so choose to.[8] The damage, in this case, is both physical and political. Campbell notes how cartels like CJNG should be understood as political entities and their propaganda as a form of political discourse.[9]

The slogan of “hugs and not bullets” is propaganda designed to convince a population exhausted with violence that there is a new and better way to deal with DTOs in Mexico. All governments engage in propaganda, as do other political or quasi-political entities.[10] The failed capture of Ovidio Guzmán López in 2019 and the subsequent shootout in Sinaloa show the failure to develop a unique strategy by the new administration and is a severe blow to the image of a peaceful strategy. The CJNG seems to be taking advantage of this image AMLO presents by showing their military power and directly challenging the government as it states one thing and does another. Guerrero has carefully studied how the new administration has operated its strategy against the major DTOs in Mexico that of the Sinaloa cartel and CJNG. He reports that while 245 members of the Sinaloa cartel were detained during this administration, 629 members of the CJNG cartel have been detained.[11] Even the percentage of captures in which the government used federal forces informs that 36% were used for captures related to the Sinaloa cartel versus 47% used for captures against the CJNG.[12] The CJNG was reportedly angered as Rúben Oseguera González (the son of “El Mencho”) was extradited to the USA after a long legal battle in February 2020 while Ovidio Guzmán was let go by Mexican security forces.[13].

The CJNG is the top priority for both Mexican and American authorities. In Mexico, at the beginning of 2020, the authorities arrested three leaders of the CJNG in the capital and another in Zapoapan, Jalisco. Omar García Harfuch (Mexico City’s secretary of public security) was a central figure for these arrests. The CJNG responded with a very public assassination attempt against García in the capital.[14] The assassination attempt is a clear message to the government that retaliation will be met with violence and expose the government's supposed new peaceful strategy. Guevara explains how scare tactics are a way DTOs can use the threat of violence to reach a desired outcome.[15] Guevara also describes the use of new weapons to cause a high degree of psychological impact.[16]

The use of drones with explosives attached to them in Michoacán, as detailed by Robert J. Bunker, John P. Sullivan, David A. Kuhn, and Alma Keshavarz can thus be understood as another piece of scare tactics and propaganda.[17] A specific example of propaganda through fear tactics with these new weapons is the attack the CJNG launched with explosive drones against state police officers in El Aguaje (a town in Aguililla, Michoacán) that left two officers injured on the twentieth of April 2021.[18] This attack was in response to the policemen’s and state’s efforts to reopen highways into Aguililla that have been under siege by the CJNG for over a month. Narco-blockades are another form of narco-propaganda employed by cartels seeking to gain impunity and influence people's perceptions of events.[19]

Campbell explains how brutality is a calculation to get the most propagandistic impact possible in areas of cartel struggle.[20] Guevara provides insight into how these brutal tactics used by cartels try and end favoritism and intimidate their opponents.[21] A white-collar broker that provides services to the CJNG explains how there are several pacts between the state and crime, but only at the local and regional level.[22] He continues to detail how these pacts explain the brutal attacks on security forces as they seek to disrupt enemies’ arrangements at the local and regional levels. An example of this occurred in El Aguaje in October 2019 as the CJNG ambushed and killed 13 state police officers.[23] The US government also targets the CJNG cartel responsible for producing new deadly drugs like fentanyl that has killed 70,000 people in 2019 due to overdoses.[24] Project Python targets the CJNG within the USA and is responsible for 700 detentions and the seizure of over 20,000 kilos of drugs and 22 million dollars. Operation Agave Azul targets CJNG bank accounts. As a result, they froze over 2,000 bank accounts and arrested several CJNG leaders.[25]

Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes understands that the most effective strategy against a government that desperately tries to create an image of peace is to create a propaganda campaign showing a cartel that is ready for war. “El Mencho” seeks to disillusion the citizens of Mexico by showing that the new strategy to battle DTO’s and bring peace to Mexico is just another failed promise. In July 2020, a few weeks after the public assassination attempt against Omar García and the supposed birthday of their leader, the CJNG published a video that went viral on social media.[26] The video follows the format of a military parade as dozens of cartel soldiers wear bullet-proof vests and tactical uniforms that carry the colors of the Mexican flag over the letters CJNG displayed on the front of their uniforms.[27] Campbell explains the use of these uniforms, insignias, and logos as a form of “criminal brand name” that effectively convinces the populace and enemies of their formidable force.[28]

CJNG

CJNG ‘Narco Commando’ (Column of Cartel Armored Vehicles)

July 2020. Source: CJNG Social Media.

The cartel soldiers are armed with high caliber guns, including but not limited to anti-aircraft machine guns, .50 Caliber machine guns mounted on their vehicles, as well as RPGs. They stand next to bullet-proof hummers and jeeps wrapped in military camouflage and have decals that say CJNG special forces, elite group. We can hear the cartel soldiers in a rehearsed manner repeating in unison “Pura gente del señor Mencho” (We are all people of mister Mencho).[29] These propaganda videos serve as a warning to other cartels, but more importantly to the government, by showing them that any effort to damage their cartel will be met with violence and thus be politically costly. DTO’s have embraced “new media” technologies (such as YouTube videos) and how they have also become central in the search for power.[30][31] Sullivan details how these new forms of media allow DTOs to communicate in real-time, show their intentions, and dodge narco-censorship.[32] Guevara provides the context for narco-censorship as she illustrates how the Mexican government has created guiding principles for media organizations reporting on organized crime.[33] She describes how the media in Mexico is banned from reporting on cartel propaganda, so DTOs have circumvented this censorship by using blogs and YouTube.[34]

Michoacán is a key state for the trafficking of drugs and is the birthplace of the leader of the CJNG and many of its members. Falko Ernst notes that the CJNG has engaged in a decade-long attempt to take over the region as it sees it as a key region for international drug trafficking and extorsion markets.[35] Sullivanexplains how “narratives of violence and power are key elements in the battle to secure the political and social panorama in the narco-war zone.”[36] The narco-war zone is a “transnational and cultural space where competitors engage in a physical and information war to control territories, markets, and spheres of influence.”[37] The state of Michoacán, in particular its coastal areas and Aguililla, are in a narco-war zone.

The town of Aguililla is explicitly a strategic spot for the trafficking of drugs and allegedly the birthplace of “El Mencho.”[38] The town of Aguililla is isolated and historically marginated from development programs in the region that led its citizens to either migrate or enter the drug business.[39] Most of the municipality of Aguililla has been placed under siege by the CJNG for months limiting food, supplies, medicine, and people from entering.[40] To understand the violence that has transpired in Michoacán this year and the curious denial of violence by Israel Patrón Reyes (Michoacán’s Secretary of Security), it is essential to understand these events under the context of a propaganda war. The National Regeneration Movement (Movimiento Regeneración Nacional) or MORENA—the political party of president AMLO—assumed power, promising the fourth great transformation of Mexico. They built their campaign on getting rid of corruption in the government, ending the war against DTOs, and restoring peace. Michoacán presents an inconvenient reality to the ideal of MORENA. Its citizens denounce the government in the state of corruption and of having a close relation to the self-defense groups in the region responsible for drug trafficking.[41]

In February of 2021, the CJNG distributes a propaganda video stating that they were from Michoacán, unlike the people from the Cártles Unidos. Cártles Unidos (United Cartels) is an alliance of local auto defense groups linked with working with the army and national guard and having strong political connections.[42] The CJNG wants to portray this group as outsiders and themselves as locals as part of what are often referred to as information wars, which are crucial for any conflict.[43] Cartel propaganda is frequently used to cast themselves as the true protectors of a community to control the territory and political processes to operate with impunity.[44]

The video exposes the self-defense groups in this area as drug lords. They direct their attention to the government, commanding them to stop protecting the United cartel on the coast. The video charges the MORENA senator in the state of Colima, Gricelda Valencia de la Mora, of protecting the leaders of the United Cartels, Héctor Zepeda Navarrete and German Ramírez Sánchez.[45] The video directly calls on AMLO to pay attention to the electoral process in the coast as they blame self-defense leaders “Teto” (Héctor Zepeda Navarrete) and “El Toro” (German Ramírez Sánchez) for influencing who will become municipal presidents as a means to protect their interests.[46]

At the beginning of April of 2021, videos started circulating online showing a convoy of bullet-proof vehicles entering the town of la Aguililla, Michoacán, and videos of CJNG cartel members celebrating victories against the United Cartel in the region.[47] Local authorities were quick to deny the violence. Ivan Patrón Reyes declared that “this is not occurring in Michoacán, this is not an incursion into Aguililla it is happening in Teocaltiche Jalisco.”[48] Parish priest Gregorio López Gerónimo exposes how since January, 1,500 people from Aguililla have sought refuge. The priest believes the uptick in violence is due to the elections this year and the necessity to show who has the power in the region.[49] Gilberto Vergara is the parish priest in Aguililla who exposes the state authorities as he accuses them of lying by stating that nothing is happening in Aguililla.[50] Silvano Aureoles, head of the administration in Michoacán, minimizes the violence, but Vergara confirms the violence in Aguililla.

New video footage shows a helicopter giving supplies to the army since the CJNG cartel is blamed for deploying a human shield blocking the entrance to the military headquarters in the region.[51] The CJNG is strategically showing off its military might as it tries to characterize itself as the true protectors of its home state and embarrass the local and federal government by exposing its inability to control the region. As Sullivan explains, propaganda constructs counterpower narratives that take legitimacy and solvency from the state.[52] Simultaneously, the cartel knows it can take these territories because the threat of escalation with the army would be exceptionally politically costly in an election year. Israel Pátron Reyes after a week of reports of violence in Aguililla would finally accept there had been gunfights in Aguililla as well as in Tecaltepec, Buenavista.[53]

The CJNG understands the importance of propaganda and has managed to wield it as a weapon to hurt the government's image and expose the government’s new peaceful strategy as propaganda. Mexico’s cartels are increasingly utilizing “information operations” to further their economic and political goals and to battle each other and the Mexican state.[54] These “info ops” are currently at play in Michoacán as DTOs try to make gains during this electoral cycle. A political consultant in Michoacán with first-hand knowledge of how arrangements are brokered between DTOs and political candidates states that “only those who have the protection of the state can grow.”[55] He goes on to explain how “greater territorial control allows criminal groups to move blocks of votes, giving them leverage to negotiate deals with current and future officeholders.”[56] As Sullivan points out, “info ops” are not there to just silence adversaries and critics but are a tool to extend their political reach and construct a political structure that promotes their objectives.[57]

The CJNG knows that the Mexican and American governments prioritize it, so it seeks to make any attack against it politically costly for the government. It brazenly takes over territory in Michoacán during an election year as it knows retaliation by the Mexican armed forces would go directly against AMLO’s and MORENA’s promise of peace. Salvador Maldonado, an anthropologist, specialized in security in Michoacán, believes the inaction by security forces in the region reflects a political calculation by AMLO. Maldonado explains that AMLO wants to protect his image of hugs and not bullets and avoid the political cost past administrations have had to pay after declaring war on the cartels.[58] The local government is also interested in minimizing reports of violence as the seat for governor in Michoacán is up for grabs. The CJNG uses propaganda to win the hearts and minds of citizens as they hand out supplies and food, with the CJNG acronym labeling the supply boxes at the beginning of the pandemic.[59] The CJNG also engages in propaganda to protect itself as it warns of the high political cost the government will pay if it attacks them. The cartel’s willingness to militarily engage a government desperately trying to portray itself as the purveyor of a new peaceful strategy is costly, as seen in the brazen attacks of Aguililla.

The significance of the CJNG engaging in “info ops” against its rivals and the government through propaganda that span from YouTube videos to brutal displays of violence has committed itself to violent tactics to achieve its goals. To control territory in Michoacán, it uses brutal displays of force through ambushes and drone attacks of state police it sees as collaborating with their enemy in the region (Cárteles Unidos). We can expect attacks against state security forces to increase in number and brutality as they become part of the propaganda machine the CJNG wishes to deploy. The state elections only exacerbate these attacks as the CJNG blames the state’s security forces and politicians for collaborating with the United Cartels. Violence also serves as a deterrent to federal forces to engage in the region as they don’t want to contradict the “hugs not bullets” image the new administration presents during an election year. This image strategically leaves the federal government and security forces with their hands tied as the CJNG takes advantage of its fears of confrontation and directly attacks state forces that are overwhelmed with the military might of the CJNG. All this suggests that it is a matter of time before the CJNG can control and take over coastal regions of Michoacán, helping them further expand their already deadly drug operations overseas and gain hegemony over central Mexico.

Elections in Mexico are already turning violent. As Falko Ernst reports, since the beginning of the campaign season officially began on the seventh of September 2020, 69 politicians, including 22 candidates, have been assassinated across the country.[60] We can expect electoral violence in Michoacán to rise over this electoral period as the CJNG seeks hegemony and state collaboration in the region. The damage and danger to Mexican sovereignty and democracy are growing as narco-induced violence in politics becomes the norm and preferred strategy of the CJNG. Corruption at the state and regional levels needs to be addressed by the federal government to protect its citizens and its democracy. Suppose federal forces are committed to not engaging the CJNG directly. In that case, they need to set up refugee camps in the short term for those escaping the violence in the region and provide them with security and resources to rebuild their lives. Most importantly, the United States’ government and Mexico’s government need to collaborate to make gains against these powerful DTOs. They need to continue to freeze bank accounts of DTOs, trace and halt the importation of military-grade weapons and vehicles into Mexico and identify and punish state and security officials collaborating with DTOs.

Endnotes

[1] Edward L. Bernays, and Mark Crispin Miller, Propaganda. 2018, p. 52.

[2] Jannet López. “12 Puntos, “Suficientes” Para Cuarta Transformación.” [“12 Points are Enough for the Fourth Transformation.”] Milenio. 7 December 2018, https://www.milenio.com/politica/12-puntos-suficientes-para-4a-transformacion.

[3] “López Obrador Descarta ‘Guerra’ Contra el Narco en México.” [“López Obrador Discards War Against DTOs in México.”] Chicago Tribune. 11 January 2021, https://www.chicagotribune.com/espanol/sns-es-amlo-descarta-guerra-contra-narco-mexico-20210111-ivjijfe5yrapncq6chdwr7vwcm-story.html.

[4] ibid. 

[5] Howard Campbell, “Narco-Propaganda in the Mexican ‘Drug War’: An Anthropological Perspective.” Latin American Perspectives. Vol. 41, no. 2, 2012: pp. 60-77, https://doi.org/10.1177/0094582X12443519.

[6] Ibid, p. 64.

[7] America Y. Guevara, “Propaganda in Mexico's Drug War.” Journal of Strategic Security. Vol. 6, no. 3, Fall 2013: pp. 131-151, https://jstor.org/stable/10.2307/26485065.

[8] "Un Mensaje Desafiante: El Cartel De Jalisco no Tiene Miedo de Mostrar su Poder." [“A Defiant Message: the CJNG Cartel is not Afraid of Showing off its Power.”] Semana. 24 July 2020, https://www.semana.com/mundo/articulo/el-cartel-de-jalisco-muestra-su-milicia-contra-amlo-noticias-mundo/688806/.

[9] Op. Cit. Campbell, “Narco-Propaganda in the Mexican ‘Drug War’: An Anthropological Perspective.”

[10] Ibid.

[11] "¿AMLO va Contra Mencho? Caen Más Narcos del CJNG Que del Cártel Sinaloa." [“AMLO goes against Mencho? More Cartel Members are Detained From the CJNG Cartel Than the Sinaloa Cartel.”] La Silla Rota. 1 March 2021, https://lasillarota.com/nacion/amlo-va-contra-mencho-caen-mas-narcos-del-cjng-que-del-cartel-sinaloa/491459.

[12] Ibid.

[13] Ibid.

[14] Op. Cit. “Un Mensaje Desafiante: El Cartel De Jalisco no Tiene Miedo de Mostrar su Poder.”

[15] Op. Cit. Guevara, “Propaganda in Mexico's Drug War.”

[16] Ibid.

[17] Robert J. Bunker, John P. Sullivan, David A. Kuhn, and Alma Keshavarz, “Mexican Cartel Tactical Note #46: Weaponized Drones (Aerial Improvised Explosive Devices) Deployed by CJNG in Tecalcatepec, Michoacán.” Small Wars Journal. 5 October 2020, https://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/mexican-cartel-tactical-note-46-weaponized-drones-aerial-improvised-explosive-devices.

[18] Jorge Monroy, “CJNG Ataca a Policías en Aguililla, Michoacán con Drones Cargados de Explosivos.” [“CJNG Attacks Police in Aguililla, Michoacan with Drones Filled with Explosives.”] El Economista. 20 April 2021, https://www.eleconomista.com.mx/politica/CJNG-ataca-a-policias-en-Aguililla-Michoacan-con-drones-cargados-de-explosivos--20210420-0066.html.

[19] John P. Sullivan, “Cartel Info Ops: Power and Counter-power in Mexico’s Drug War.” Mountain Runner. 10 April 2010, https://mountainrunner.us/2010/11/cartel_info_ops_power_and_counter-power_in_mexico_drug_war/.

[20] Op. Cit. Campbell, “Narco-Propaganda in the Mexican ‘Drug War’: An Anthropological Perspective.”

[21] Op. Cit. Guevara, “Propaganda in Mexico’s Drug War.”

[22] Falko Ernst, “Violence Erupts as Mexico’s Deadly Gangs Aim to Cement Power in Largest Ever Elections.” The Guardian. 20 April 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2021/apr/20/mexico-violence-gangs-cartels-criminal-elections.

[23] Ibid.

[24] “Un Mensaje Desafiante: El Cartel De Jalisco no Tiene Miedo de Mostrar su Poder.” [“A Defiant Message: the CJNG Cartel is not Afraid of Showing off its Power.”] Semana. 24 July 2020, https://www.semana.com/mundo/articulo/el-cartel-de-jalisco-muestra-su-milicia-contra-amlo-noticias-mundo/688806/.

[25] Ibid.

[26] Ibid.

[27] “El Video Que Muestra el Poder Militar del Capo Mexicano ‘El Mencho’.” [“The Video that Shows off the Military Power of the Mexican Drug Lord ‘El Mencho’.”] El Tiempo. 18 July 2020, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OyVGiJacQqI.

[28] Op. Cit. Campbell, “Narco-Propaganda in the Mexican ‘Drug War’: An Anthropological Perspective.”

[29] Op. Cit. “El Video Que Muestra el Poder Militar del Capo Mexicano ‘El Mencho’.” 

[30] Op. Cit.  Sullivan, “Cartel Info Ops: Power and Counter-power in Mexico’s Drug War.” 

[31] Op. Cit. Sullivan, “Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información.” 

[32] Ibid.

[33] Op.Cit. Guevara, “Propaganda in Mexico’s Drug War.”

[34] Ibid.

[35] Op. Cit. Ernst, “Violence Erupts as Mexico’s Deadly Gangs Aim to Cement Power in Largest Ever Elections.”

[36] Op. Cit. Sullivan, “Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información.”

[37] Ibid.

[38] Ernesto Martínez Elorriaga, “Habrá Vigilancia Para Frenar Violencia en Aguililla, Michoacán.” [“There will be Surveillance to Stop the Violence in Aguililla.”] La Jornada. 11 April 2021, https://www.jornada.com.mx/notas/2021/04/11/estados/habra-vigilancia-para-frenar-la-violencia-en-aguililla-michoacan/.

[39] Romain Le Cour Granmaison, “Aguililla: la Guerra es Política Por Otros Medios.” [ “Aguililla: the War is Politics by Other Mediums.”] Nexos. 19 April 2021, https://seguridad.nexos.com.mx/aguililla-la-guerra-es-politica-por-otros-medios/.

[40] Ibid.

[41] “Se Registraron Nuevos Enfrentamientos en Aguililla entre Cárteles Unidos y el CJNG; Párrocos Aseguran su Veracidad.” [“New Clashes are Registered in Aguililla Between United Cartels and the CJNG; Parish Priests Assure of Their Veracity.”] Infobae. 10 April 2021, https://www.infobae.com/america/mexico/2021/04/10/se-registraron-nuevos-enfrentamientos-en-aguililla-entre-carteles-unidos-y-el-cjng-parrocos-aseguran-su-veracidad/.

[42] Op. Cit. Ernst, “Violence Erupts as Mexico's Deadly Gangs Aim to Cement Power in Largest Ever Elections.”

[43] Op. Cit. Sullivan, “Cartel Info Ops: Power and Counter-power in Mexico’s Drug War.” Mountain Runner.

[44] Ibid.

[45] “Video: CJNG Manda Mensaje a Amlo y Amenaza de Muerte a Rivales.” [ “Video: CJNG Sends a Message to AMLO and Threaten Their Rivals with Death.”] La Opinión. 14 February 2021, https://laopinion.com/2021/02/14/video-cjng-manda-mensaje-a-amlo-y-amenaza-de-muerte-a-rivales/.

[46] Ibid.

[47] “Circulan Videos de la Irrupción del CJNG en Aguililla, Michoacán.” [“Videos Circulate of the Irruption of the CJNG in Aguililla, Michoacán.”] Aristegui Noticias. 8 April 2021, https://aristeguinoticias.com/0804/mexico/circulan-videos-de-la-irrupcion-del-cjng-en-aguililla-michoacan-video/.

[48] Jorge Monroy, “CJNG Ataca a Policías en Aguililla, Michoacán con Drones Cargados de Explosivos.” [“CJNG Attacks Police in Aguililla, Michoacán with Drones Filled with Explosives.”] El Economista. 20 April 2021, https://www.eleconomista.com.mx/politica/CJNG-ataca-a-policias-en-Aguililla-Michoacan-con-drones-cargados-de-explosivos--20210420-0066.html.

[49] Ibid.

[50] “Se Registraron Nuevos Enfrentamientos en Aguililla Entre Cárteles Unidos y el CJNG; Párrocos Aseguran su Veracidad.” [“New Clashes are Registered in Aguililla Between United Cartels and the CJNG; Parish Priests Assure of Their Veracity.”] Infobae. 10 April 10 2021, https://www.infobae.com/america/mexico/2021/04/10/se-registraron-nuevos-enfrentamientos-en-aguililla-entre-carteles-unidos-y-el-cjng-parrocos-aseguran-su-veracidad/.

[51] Ibid.

[52] Op. Cit. Sullivan, “Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información.”

[53] Op. Cit. Martínez Elorriaga, “Habrá Vigilancia Para Frenar Violencia en Aguililla, Michoacán.” [“There will be Surveillance to Stop the Violence in Aguililla.”] La Jornada

[54] Op. Cit. Sullivan, “Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información.”

[55] Op. Cit. Ernst, “Violence Erupts as Mexico’s Deadly Gangs Aim to Cement Power in Largest Ever Elections.”

[56] Ibid.

[57] Op. Cit. Sullivan, “Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información.”

[58] Op. Cit. Ernst, “Violence Erupts as Mexico’s Deadly Gangs Aim to Cement Power in Largest Ever Elections.

[59] “Un Mensaje Desafiante: El Cartel De Jalisco no Tiene Miedo de Mostrar su Poder.” [“A Defiant Message: the CJNG Cartel is not Afraid of Showing off its Power.”] Semana. 24 July 2020, https://www.semana.com/mundo/articulo/el-cartel-de-jalisco-muestra-su-milicia-contra-amlo-noticias-mundo/688806/.

[60] Op. Cit. Ernst, “Violence Erupts as Mexico’s Deadly Gangs Aim to Cement Power in Largest Ever Elections.”

This article is available in Spanish as "La Guerra de Propaganda del CJNG y AMLO."

Additional Reading

Howard Campbell, "Narco-Propaganda in the Mexican “Drug War”: An Anthropological Perspective." Latin American Perspectives. Vol. 41, no. 2, 2012: pp. 60-77.  

America Y. Guevara, "Propaganda in Mexico's Drug War." Journal of Strategic Security. Vol. 6, no. 3, Fall 2013: pp. 131-151

John P. Sullivan, "Cartel Info Ops: Power and Counter-power in Mexico’s Drug War." MountainRunner. 10 April 2010. 

John P. Sullivan, "Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información." Small Wars Journal. 4 November 2013.

 

Categories: El Centro

About the Author(s)

Daniel Weisz Argomedo is a PhD candidate in Political Science at the University of California Irvine with a focus on International Relations and Comparative Studies. He is currently writing his dissertation on the war on drugs and its impact on women’s security in Mexico. He holds an M.A. in Political Science from San Diego State University where he wrote a dissertation on ‘Hacktivism’and social movements; and earned a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Alberta where he wrote a thesis on the Mexican war on drugs. He wrote "Climate Change, Drug Traffickers and La Sierra Tarahumara" for the special issue on climate change and global security at the Journal of Strategic Security. He is a founder and secretary of the Leonora Carrington Foundation. He is fluent in Spanish and his research interests include cyberwarfare, the war on drugs and contemporary Latin American politics and history.  He can be reached at dweiszar@uci.edu