December 11, 2013
Mexico's Troubling Vigilantism
Ted Galen Carpenter, The National Interest
The Associated Press
Mexico’s infamous drug cartels have terrorized the country for years. Since 2006, at least 60,000 people have perished in armed conflicts between the cartels and the Mexican government and, to an even greater extent, in turf fights among the rival drug gangs themselves. Public attitudes toward the traffickers have varied dramatically. In some portions of the country, people have treated them as modern-day folk heroes, and have been willing to look the other way while prominent drug lords provide money for schools, hospitals, and churches. Other Mexicans, though, have become increasingly angry at people they regard as thugs and terrorists. For that segment of the population, the belief has grown that the authorities are unable (or in many cases, unwilling) to confront the drug...