Inside Opinion

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Tag: Mexico

July
6th

Immigration, drug cartels and a Lakewood murder

This editorial will appear in Sunday’s print edition.

Still need a reason to look kindly on immigration reform? Would a defeat for Mexican drug cartels do the trick?

Some Americans might still have the perception that Mexico’s depraved drug lords are pretty much preoccupied with fighting each other and their government, with some thuggery spilling over into Arizona and other border states.

If only. Cartel operatives and contractors have thoroughly penetrated the United States, and many of them are Mexican criminals who camouflage themselves as ordinary Mexicans who crossed the border for jobs. The fact that so many of the

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June
16th

Heroin: Unintended consequence of meth, Rx drug crackdown

This editorial will appear in Monday’s print edition.

Think of a heroin user and what comes to mind? A gaunt addict in some flophouse with a needle hanging out of his arm?

How about an Oscar winner? Or a billionaire’s grandson? Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman just got out of rehab for a heroin addiction, and the heir to financier T. Boone Pickens died of a heroin overdose earlier this year.

Do an Internet news search of “heroin,” and one fact becomes clear: The opiate — which can be smoked, snorted or injected — is making a comeback. In cities across

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Jan.
3rd

Headlines we’ll read in 2013, for better or worse

Everyone likes predictions (why else do we read horoscopes?). Here are some from David Rothkopf of Foreign Policy. For the most part, he sees positive developments, particularly for the world economy. But he ends on a sad, pessimistic note.

Headlines we’ll be reading in 2013

By David Rothkopf

WASHINGTON — As that great geopolitical theorist Carly Simon once observed, “We can never know about the days to come but we think about them anyway, yay.” She then went on to say, as ketchup lovers everywhere remember, “Anticipation, anticipation, is making me late . . . is keepin’ me waitin’.”

Of course, the tortures of anticipation are well known to observers of the slow-motion train wreck that has been Washington’s management of America’s financial situation, or the recent, interminable U.S. presidential campaign, or the hideously slow path to oblivion followed by the Assad regime in Syria, or the painfully circular Eurofollies, not to mention the gradual but undeniable degradation of the planet’s environment that goes on year in and year out despite our clear knowledge about how to avoid the damage.

The time has come to say “enough.” We live in an age in which the average consumer expects instant gratification. There is no reason those who are interested in the bigger issues taking place in the world shouldn’t have it too. For that reason, we bring to you the top headlines that you will be looking back at when 2013 draws to a close 12 months from now. Think of it as the year in review, before it happens. Read more »

April
20th

Mexico can’t win drug war without U.S.

This editorial will appear in Wednesday’s print edition.

A war is raging south of the U.S.-Mexican border, one that increasingly poses a direct threat to Americans.

The vicious battle for power among Mexican drug cartels claimed another 1,000 lives in March. That’s a record even for Mexico, a country that’s home to the most dangerous city in the world outside a declared war zone: Ciudad Juarez.

That metropolis across the border from El Paso, Texas, averages seven executions a day. Three Americans associated with the U.S. consulate were among the casualties one day last month. People who can afford to leave do; as many as 30,000 houses have been abandoned. Those left behind hunker down, avoiding eye contact with strangers, cell phone calls from unknown numbers and large gatherings.

The growing body count across Mexico puts this year on pace to surpass 2009, when 9,635 people died in violence tied to organized crime. In all, more than 22,700 gang members, police officers, soldiers and bystanders have been killed in drug-related violence since the Mexican government’s crackdown on cartels began more than three years ago.

Mere proximity to so much lawlessness automatically puts Americans at risk. But the root cause of this violence – the relentless race to supply Americans’ insatiable demand for illicit drugs – practically guarantees that carnage won’t stop at the border.

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Dec.
23rd

Mexico’s narco-war is a threat to the United States

This editorial will appear in tomorrow’s print edition.

In the traditional Sicilian mafia, families were normally off limits. You could kill the capo; you couldn’t kill his mother or children.

Leave it to Mexico’s drug-traffickers to make the mafia look humane. On Tuesday, one faction took revenge for the death of a cartel leader in a way shocking even by narco-terror standards. Hours after the funeral of a marine who fell in the raid that left Arturo Beltran Leyva dead, some of Leyva’s allies invaded the marine’s home and gunned down his mother, brother, sister and aunt.

The message couldn’t have been more clear: Touch us, and your family may pay the price.

Most Americans pay little attention to Mexico, but this atrocity should a wake-up call. It exemplifies the drug-fueled wave of criminal violence that has been taking on the dimensions of a civil war in that country.

More than 15,000 Mexicans have been killed since President Felipe Calderón launched a military offensive against the drug cartels and crime syndicates three years ago. The body count – criminals, corrupt and honest police, bystanders, mayors, soldiers, federal officials, even priests – can’t be blamed on Calderón. It reflects the embedded power of the syndicates and how hard it has been for Calderón’s government to challenge that power. The alternative is to stand by and watch crime bosses become the de facto rulers of Mexico – a nightmare for Mexicans and Americans alike.
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