U.S. Partners with Mexican Government to Fight Drug Gangs
Two recent events have been named as victories for Mexican President Felipe Calderon. A recent news piece touched on the December killing of Arturo Beltran Leyva, head of one of the country's largest drug trafficking organizations and the later arrest of his brother Carlos.
Calderon has waged a war on drug gangs over the past few years, which has led to a wave of violence throughout the country. The president’s efforts are being applauded by U.S. officials, who are also trying to offer support in his efforts.
This war against narcotics-trafficking cartels in Mexico is being closely watched by federal law enforcement officials in the United States. A multi-agency U.S. effort is being spearheaded by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) at its field office in Houston.
According to chief intelligence at the Houston office, Gary Hale, the sharing of resources and information with the Mexican government has helped President Calderon to disrupt the criminal organizations’ operations on the border.
"To be realistic, we will never get rid of drug trafficking, per se, but we can have an effect on the overall business and the best effect that we have determined we can have is to disrupt and dismantle. And how do you do that? You go after command and control, you go after the leadership," he said.
Hale noted that Mexican authorities are fully aware that the cartels are taking over large parts of Mexico and threatening the nation’s sovereignty. This truth motivates the soldiers and police agents to carry on their mission.
While some in Mexico argue that the changes have not been visible, Hale is quick to point out the reductions in the amount of cocaine and other narcotics from South America that make it across the U.S. border.