Saturday, February 28, 2009

Mexican drug war coming to your city? It might already be there.

National Drug Intelligence Center: U.S. cities reporting presence of Mexican drug gangs -- Click on image to enlarge

In the past few days, colleges across American have warned students not to travel to Mexico over spring break, due to this travel alert issued by the U.S. State Department, which describes the dangers stemming from Mexico's rapidly escalating drug related violence, much of it along the U.S. border. According to an extensive, detailed report by the Los Angeles Times, 7,337 people have been killed in Mexico's drug wars just since January 2007. The Mexican government has committed 45,000 troops and 5,000 federal police to this open warfare with heavily armed drug gangs.

These gangs are engaged in highly lucrative drug trafficking into the U.S., so the violence may spill over into American territory -- not only in the communities along the U.S. side of the southwest border.

The above map shows the American towns and cities where authorities have reported the presence of Mexican drug gangs. These gangs are active almost everywhere -- even in Idaho Falls and Pocatello, Idaho (lots of druggies up there in the mountains, I guess). Only three states -- Maine, Vermont and North Dakota -- reported no activity, so far.

You can see an even more interesting interactive map of affected towns and cities by clicking here.

In the 1970s and 1980s, as American demand for cocaine skyrocketed, the Colombian drug cartels dominated trafficking of that drug into the U.S. One result was an epidemic of competitive gang violence that plagued American cities from Miami to New York. Given the comparative ease of travel between the U.S. and Mexico, the "Miami Vice" of two decades ago may wind up looking like kindergarten stuff.

What should be done? Got an opinion? Post a comment.

1 comment:

  1. I saw this video where they talk about the issue more in-depth :
    Mexican law-enforcement officials are kind of known for being corrupt but I don't think the issue should involve U.S. military intervention like some people are claiming. It is up to the Mexican government to secure its borders. Though they have been notoriously bad at that.