U.S. Finally Admits to Infiltration
By Drug Cartels
"The head of the bureau of U.S. Customs and
Border Protection, Alan Bersin, acknowledged that organized crime groups have
co-opted elements under his command. … While some levels of the U.S. government
cooperate with drug traffickers or turn a blind eye to the activities of the
cartels to preserve peace and public safety north of the Rio Grande, in Mexico,
combating this criminal activity has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths."
In an appearance before the U.S. Senate [watch below],
the head of the bureau of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (known
by its English acronym, CBP), Alan Bersin, acknowledged that
organized crime groups have co-opted elements under his command, and acknowledged
that so far, they have uncovered 95 cases of corruption relating to drug
trafficking, undocumented immigrants and money laundering within the ranks of his
The data provided by the official isn't surprising, since
the capacity of the organized crime groups to buy civil servants cannot be
expected to observe borders. But this was the first solid data demonstrating
that corruption is endemic to agencies of the neighboring country, a phenomena
that as a whole, Washington authorities have up to now been unable or unwilling
to recognize, much less attack.
Moreover, the number of corruption cases admitted to
by Bersin lack veracity when viewed alongside the unending flow of illegal
drugs that enter U.S. territory across the Mexican border every day. Indeed,
it's hard to believe that criminal gangs could have supplied the largest narcotics
market on the planet, with the collusion of less than a hundred customs
officials. On the contrary, the rise of organized crime - and drug trafficking
in particular - both in Mexico and the United States, reflect a breakdown on a
huge scale in the institutional spheres of both countries, which translates into
corruption and impunity. And since the authorities in our neighboring country don't
admit or confront these challenges in a convincing and comprehensive manner, the
public has no reason to see in the foregoing statements anything more than an exercise
in damage control on the part of the Obama Administration.
With regard to Mexico, in light of these considerations,
the Calderón government's persistently superficial, incendiary and superficial way
of understanding criminal activity is doubly concerning.
Yesterday, in the context of the 25th National
Conference on Law Enforcement, Interior Minister José Francisco Blake Mora admitted
that the country would close out the year with a total of over 7,000 kidnapping,
and presented the figure as a demonstration that "we still owe Mexican
society a lot if we are to fulfill our responsibilities and commitments."
Such an acknowledgement should be made not only
because of the rising number of abductions, but principally due to the
government's decision toyoke the
country to the logic of Washington in battling drug trafficking and organized
crime. While some levels of the U.S. government cooperate with drug traffickers
or turn a blind eye to the activities of the cartels to preserve peace and
public safety north of the Rio Grande, in Mexico, combating this criminal
activity has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths, a rise in crimes like kidnapping,
extortion, and human trafficking; an unprecedented institutional breakdown; the
loss of territorial control over various regions by the state, and the
disintegration of the social fabric over large areas.
With episodes like Operation Fast and Furious, in which
authorities of our neighboring country set themselves up as weapons suppliers
to the Mexican cartels; with statements like those of Comandante Gomecindo
López - member of the Special Operations Unit of the El Paso police - that
various Mexican drug traffickers have their usual residence on U.S. soil; and with
the indisputable fact that violence in Mexico offers, however appalling it may
be, excellent business opportunities for our neighboring country's weapons
industry, and its financial, banking, and currency exchange systems, this
desolate situation inevitably contrasts sharply with the prepared statements of
Commissioner Bersin on the narco-infiltration of the CBP.
Confronted with the U.S. government's double standard when
it comes to the war on drugs, and above all, in the face of the exasperating
daily bloodbath now taking place in Mexico, the federal authorities should
inevitably question the relevance - and even the truthfulness - of the public
safety strategy imposed by Washington on several nations, and in the case of
our own, comes in the context of the Merida Initiative.
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