Mexico: The Drug War Widens and Intensifies


February19, 2007: Mexico has increased military pay a whopping 46 percent, and made it retroactive to January 1. Mexican President Felipe Calderon said that the Mexican military is doing an outstanding job in the war against organized crime. The pay raise is meant to encourage the troops to keep it up.

February 18, 2007: Mexico has sent 2,600 soldiers and police to the states of Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon, two states that border Texas. These forces will conduct anti-drug operations. The navy will increase patrols off-shore. The "Gulf Cartel" (drug gang) is headquartered in Tamaulipas. The city of Matamoros is a key "node" in the cartel's operations. The move by the government is another signal that President Calderon intends to continue the "counter-drug and counter-terror" war. Mexican forces have attacked drug gangs in interior Mexican states, and have had some initial success. The next target was northwestern Mexico, including the border state of Baja California Norte and the city of Tijuana. Now the government is going after the "northern gang" (really, north-eastern gang). The government is telling the drug lords that no area is "off limits." At the moment Mexican troops and federal police are operating in the state of Durango, Michoacan, Guerrero, Sinaloa, Coahuila and Baja California Norte. Some analysts regard the Sinaloa cartel as the "toughest gang." The Sinaloa cartel (also known as the "Sinaloa consortium") is thought to be behind the worst violence in Acapulco and Mazatlan (western Mexico).


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