REPORTING FROM MEXICO: In the United States there is lack of information about "The Drug War in Mexico" and about crime in general in this country. So we are going to start with this map. I ask my readers to observe it and then google each of the cartels that are mentioned in the picture above.
I have been living here in Mexico for about a decade and it the country was somewhat calm when I arrived. However when President Felipe Calderon arrived in power his top agenda was to rid Mexico from the power of the cartels.
The population is split right down the middle on the need for this war.
The first 50% say this war was necessary because the cartels got so big that the government could not govern effectively. The second 50% say that things were going well until Felipe Calderon stirred the bee's nest.
What is my opinion as an American living in Mexico?
We went through the same process in our history: the Mafia. After the Prohibition Era, the crime families got so powerful in New York, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, etc that FBI Director Hoover made it priority number one to go to war with organized crime.
Well the Italian Mafias don't have a thing on these Mexican cartels. The U.S. Government could rely on the FBI to fight this war, but President Felipe Calderon could not rely on his police to do the same - he needed the Military.
That is how strong the cartels are that it requires military force to cut them down to size.
But I still have not answered the question. Was this war necessary?
Yes, it was about time. Actually it should have been waged right after DEA Agent Camarena was killed by Mega Drug Lord Caro Quintero in the mid 80's, but those were other times as the government and the cartels were basically the same organization.
What I do critize is the way this war has been fought, but I also understand that Mexico had not had an insurgency of this magnitude since 1910 - during the revolution. Also, fighting this form of war is totally unconventional and not many nations have experience in this form of combat except Colombia.
Intelligence is the key to winning this war and mega cooperation from the United States in various areas.
I have to leave right now as during the writing of this article the Mexican Army in a convoy of the trucks and a Humvee have been circling my neighborhood for about an hour.
I will keep you guys posted.