Who Can One Believe In?

Posted on December 17, 2015


In Hidden Dangers published two years ago I described United States-Mexico relations as incoherent and asked Who then does one believe in?  The governments of both countries have relied on propaganda rather than factual analysis of what their programs have failed to achieve. The so-called war on drugs is a prime example. Simultaneously the government of the United States fortifies its borders while individual states decriminalize marijuana use. In Mexico President Peña Nieto’s federal government has strengthened alliances with drug producers and exporters rather than pursue and persecute them and has refused to acknowledge or investigate heroin commerce as the key to the Ayotzinapa massacre.

Spurred by the political bravado of conservative political candidates the United States has arrested and deported hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants while encouraging the presence of a labor force that in the past year remitted over 24 billion dollars to families in Mexico. At the same time Mexico’s government has criminally repressed—in collaboration with criminal gangs—immigrants from Central America and drastically cut expenditures on health, education and welfare, leaving the remittances from the United States to cover those costs.

As privatations have increased so has political and social protest. Tens of thousands of Mexican soldiers and federal police supposedly actively combatting organized crime instead reprimand, arrest, torture and kill protesting teachers union members, human rights advocates and self-defense groups organized to combat organized crime takeovers of their land. If the governments of Venezuela or Iran or Bolivia were to commit these violations the U.S. government would be pounding tables at the U.N. and assembling troops and warplanes to curtail such atrocities. But crime is not crime if committed by a collaborator. The drug war killings, the immigrant bashing, the takeovers of agriculture and industry continue as protests grow stronger.

Where will they lead? The situation could get much worse before it gets any better.