Jan 3, 2012

Mexican View on the Drug War: The bellicose discourse is going under

This editorial picks up one of a number of recent statements by President Calderon and members of his administration that allude to proposing that the U.S. legalize marijuana and, possibly, other drugs in order to take money and power away from the cartels. It also points to contradictions in Calderon's statements that declare success in the drug war while implicitely acknowledging its failure. CUPIHD is a Mexican civil society organization led by sociologists, physicians and psychologists that does research on drugs and seeks to change drug policy. Translated by MexicoBlog

Colectivo por una política integral hacia las drogas (CUPIHD) (Collective for an Integrated Policy towards Drugs), Dec. 10, 2011:

"Almost lost in the press statement made recently by Genaro Garcia Luna, Federal Public Security Secretary, was his allusion to the opening up of marijuana policy alternatives that is occurring in the U.S. as a reference point for reevaluating the position of Mexico over this plant (09/12/11 Reforma).

This statement is a clear sign that war is not the only alternative that is beginning to be looked at in the government of Felipe Calderon. The president, for his part, on a highly rated television program, made ​​a display of misinformation and prejudice, claiming that his war strategy is based on the increase in violence that is due to increased drug use. This is a patently false statement, since there is no research that demonstrates such a relationship between the two.

The president's strategy of making desperate declarations has led to countradictions regarding the effectiveness of the drug war (now interpreted as the struggle against 'organized crime'). Calderon said that the elections in Michoacan, carried out ​​on November 13, were affected by the drug traffickers. Beyond the incongruity of attempting to disqualify an election 'in retrospect' (which would also bring him into a direct confrontation with the Institutional Revolutionary Party), such a statement is a tacit admission of failure. It would mean that the army cannot guarantee the exercise of democracy, as it was in Morelia, Michoacan, that he unearthed his hatchet of war five years ago  ." Spanish original

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