U.S. military involvement in Mexico is becoming increasingly imaginable as the civil war there continues unabated. Edward Schumacher-Matos, a thoughtful but solidly establishment guy, has a piece in the Washington Post calling for U.S. military personnel to be sent to Mexico to assist with training and intelligence. The Nixon Center plans a roundtable discussion Thursday on “Mexico and the Colombia Analogy.” Robert Bunker wrote last month in Small Wars Journal:
The drug cartels and narco-gangs of the Americas, with those in Mexico of highest priority, must now be elevated to the #1 strategic threat to the United States. …
To call what is taking place in Mexico the actions of organized crime is delusional and as relevant to contemporary thinking as viewing the present-day world through the prism of the Cold War. The Mexican government made a strategic mistake and is paying for it on a daily basis with a domestic war that is far from over. The intensity of the conflict is increasingly more difficult to gauge with the ability to engage in free speech (reporting) across much of Mexico now disappearing, given the ongoing suppression and cooption of its news media. If the US government significantly delays in doing the right thing and does not shift its strategic imperative to addressing the rampant problems of Mexico and the Americas, including in the border regions of our own homeland and in enclaves within our major metropolitan zones, along with ongoing stabilization of Europe against the radical Islamic threat, we too as a nation will pay for it dearly in the years to come.
The increasingly political role of the cartels was underlined for me by something in a Sunday WaPo piece on the meth business:
Rodriquez said the local mafia – La Familia de Michoacan – blocked all street sales in the city a few years ago. The cartel said it was protecting the people from a scourge. Mexican law enforcement agents confirm that La Familia ordered a halt in local use, though they say it was a cynical ploy, a bit of propaganda.
“Now if you use it, they’ll kill you,” Rodriguez said. “Now it is just for the foreigners.”
And, in the most explicit call for military action, retired Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely has outlined a proposal to create a 20-mile-deep security zone in northern Mexico, similar to the former Israeli security zone in south Lebanon, but instead of patrolling it, he suggests special forces units be based in Texas, Arizona, and California to conduct operations within the buffer zone as needed. His article on this does not seem to be published yet, but he describes it in this video presentation, from David Horowitz’s recent Restoration Weekend (Vallely is the second speaker, after me).
We ended up intervening, not very successfully, in Mexico’s previous civil war, which began 100 years ago this fall. Let’s hope we can avoid it this time, and if we can’t, that at least it turns out better than the Wilson administration’s lackluster efforts.