The Mexican Drug War

Guillermo Arias/AP
Army soldiers stand guard by US citizen Eduardo Morquecho, aka "El Lalo," as he is shown to the
press, along with items seized from him during his arrest in Tijuana, Mexico, July 10, 2009.

The Mexican Drug War

For decades, Mexican police and public officials, enticed by bribes or simply intimidated by cartels, ignored the country’s illegal drug trade. After Mexico’s President Felipe Calderon publicly declared war on drugs, a wave of grisly murders, kidnappings and shootouts followed.

President Calderon has seen some success, capturing several cartel bosses, and breaking up various alliances, but his success comes at a price. A greater number of people have died in Mexico’s drug war than have been killed in Iraq or Afghanistan, and the toll continues to rise.

In addition to smuggling marijuana and methamphetamine, Mexico is now responsible for 90 percent of the cocaine smuggled into the U.S.

Origins of the Mexican Drug Conflict

In the mid-1980s, the South Florida Drug Task Force frightened off Colombia’s major Drug ... read more »

The Drug Conflict Today

President Calderon now has 40,000 soldiers fighting the war on drugs, but kidnappings, beheadings, ... read more »

The Impact of the Conflict and Proposed Solutions

In 2007, President George W. Bush and President Felipe Calderon signed the Merida Initiative, in ... read more »

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