Various organized crime entities throughout Latin America, Europe, and Africa—including gangs, cartels, and mafias—are increasingly responding to the global COVID-19 pandemic in a number of ways. These include accounting for a shift in their illicit revenue streams and exploring new economic opportunities that are emerging. In the area of humanitarian response, a large number of the Mexican cartels are now actively engaging in these activities for their public relations and propaganda value in supporting their ‘protector of the community narratives’ targeted at the local citizenry under their control. These cartel activities are not without precedent and have taken place in Mexico in the past—though not as widespread and pronounced as they are now—and further reinforce ongoing criminal insurgency analysis related to this phenomena linked to Eric Hobsbawm’s ‘social banditry’ construct.
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Considering Cross-Border Cartel Corruption Potentials in the United States
Thu, 01/16/2020 - 8:40am
Criminal cartels and Transnational Criminal Organizations (TCOs) rely on corruption to enable their pursuit of criminal profit and power. Indeed, Mexico’s cartels emerged from the seeds of corrupt police profiting from the narcotics trade. While violence is the public face of criminal cartels and transnational gangs, corruption is the core threat to public trust and state legitimacy and capacity.
The Cartel’s Colour
Fri, 09/06/2019 - 1:39am
Corruption, money laundering and alliances with national and Brazilians’ drug dealers and with the Russian mafia. Mexico’s “El Chapo” Guzmán’s Sinaloa Cartel is in Portugal and has set up a cocaine transhipment base for central and northern Europe. The Mexican drug dealer sons control the cocaine shipment to Portugal. This article was originally published as “A cor do cartel” at the Portuguese magazine Expresso (Lisbon) on 17 August 2019.
Tamaulipas: Between the State, Crime and the Border
Wed, 01/16/2019 - 12:39am
All criminal organizations in the world share similarities, but, at the same time exhibit particularities related to the places, times and cultures that gives rise to and surround them. Consequentially, organized crime in Mexico has a sui generis composition—the result of historical factors that have allowed the formation of criminal structures linked to high levels of violence, a cultural acceptance of criminal life and links with high political figures, causing the collapse of governability in certain territories, some of them near the northern border.
Corruption in Mexico 2019: SWJ Interview with Dr. Jose Ivan Rodriguez Sanchez
Tue, 01/15/2019 - 12:29am
During my investigative journalism series regarding public health and environmental hazards in Jalisco, Mexico, one question that continued to rise to the top was corruption. In my research, I identified a superb expert: Dr. Jose Ivan Rodriguez-Sanchez. He is currently in residence at Rice University’s James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy – Mexico Center.
Are Mexico, El Salvador, and Honduras Under Insurgent Attack?
Mon, 12/31/2018 - 5:15am
Failure of national authorities in Mexico, El Salvador, and Honduras pose risks to the well-being of the United States. First, state failure in El Salvador and Honduras creates migrant flows seeking refuge in the United States as a safe-haven for families. Second, state failure in each of these countries could grow into complete collapse of state authority and the rise to power of authoritarian regimes such as in Cuba and Venezuela which will collaborate with geo-political rivals of the United States in contravention of the Monroe Doctrine. Third, instability of social orders, economics, and politics in the countries immediately to our south will decrease regional progress towards higher living standards, undermining quality of life in our part of the world
Mexico’s Man of the People Turns to the Military
Fri, 12/28/2018 - 12:17am
Contrary to his campaign pledges, Lopez Obrador appears to be planning to use the military and the new national guard in much the same way as his predecessors. The day after his inauguration, he oversaw a ceremony at the national military HQ, the Campo Marte in Mexico City, and praised the troops. “Together, we’ll make history!” he said, repeating his campaign slogan, before emphasizing the need for both a national guard and the armed forces to bring peace to the Mexican people.
Are Armed Drones the Weapon of the Future for Mexico’s Cartels?
Thu, 08/16/2018 - 12:22am
Mexico’s powerful drug cartels could be using armed drones to attack those impeding their criminal operations, marking the potential expansion of the use of this technology from just transporting drugs or carrying out surveillance.
The social contract has been breached in many Mexican states. Instead of rule of law, impunity reigns. Crimes go unreported, uninvestigated, and unpunished.
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The sniper rifle has become a preferred weapon for cartels since a round can penetrate walls, steel, and the sides of unarmored and even moderately armored vehicles.
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