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May 25, 2009 [LINK / comment]
Major jail break in Mexico
The war on narcotics gangs in Mexico seemed to be making progress over the past two months, as the violence in places like Ciudad Juarez has subsided somewhat, but a mass escape from a prison in Zacatecas has raised security fears once again. A total of 53 prisoners from Cieneguillas prison are now at large. The prison break was carried out with 20 armed men, reportedly organized by the Gulf Cartel, which operates in northern Mexico. In response, the top security official for that state has resigned. See CNN.com.
Coincidentally, Mexico's former President Vicente Fox recently called for the legalization of marijuana, as the only way to deal with the problem which has overwhelmed Mexican police authorities. He thus joins his predecessor Ernesto Zedillo and former presidents Cesar Gaviria of Colombia and Fernando Henrique Cardoso of Brazil in taking this controversial stand. See CNN.com. I think it's clear that the status quo anti-drug policy in the U.S. and Latin America is failing, but I'm not sure that full legalization would do much good. Reform of criminal statutes that turn mischievous teenagers into hard-core felons would be the logical place to begin. In the end, however, it is a problem that can only be solved by cultural means, including education as Fox stressed. Laws can only do so much to tackle a problem of this magnitude.
Tensions in rural Peru
The Peruvian Army recently dispatched units to help local police quell recent disturbances in the Amazon region. On May 8 the government declared a two-month state of emergency in that region. Indigenous people are protesting government decrees over the past two years that ease restrictions over oil exploration and development in the wilderness areas of the Amazon rain forest. Activist leader Alberto Pizango said that negotiations with the government have broken down. See BBC. Their concerns should be respected, and their way of life should be protected to some degree, but if it turns out that these protests are being instigated by Evo Morales or Hugo Chavez, that is a different matter.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 26 May 2009, 12: 28 AM
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January 5, 2009 Illegal immigration: no problem
January 10, 2009 Bush's fiscal profligacy: a recap
January 20, 2009 Inauguration Day 2009
March 13, 2009 Tax revolt in Augusta County!
March 14, 2009 Mexican Army counterattacks
March 27, 2009 Facebook: resistance is futile
April 5, 2009 RPV chair Frederick is removed
April 8, 2009 Fujimori is convicted, again
May 3, 2009 (Very) Big Spring Day, 2009
June 12, 2009 Tiger Stadium memorial update
June 16, 2009 Home runs in New Yankee Stadium
June 28, 2009 Obama's health care proposals
June 29, 2009 House votes to regulate climate
July 7, 2009 R.I.P. Michael Jackson, Superstar
July 9, 2009 Conservative defeat in Mexico
August 16, 2009 Great Baseball Road Trip 2009
August 23, 2009 Road Trip 2009: The Birds of August
August 27, 2009 R.I.P. Edward M. Kennedy
September 7, 2009 Two clutch homers end Nats' skid
October 10, 2009 Republicans reunite in Verona
October 16, 2009 Health care polemics heat up
November 4, 2009 Republicans sweep Virginia races
November 5, 2009 Yankees are the 2009 champions
November 21, 2009 Senate votes on health care
December 23, 2009 Musings on health care "reform"
December 30, 2009 Decade of creation, and destruction
December 30, 2009 Whither the Republican soul?
December 31, 2009 A (half) decade of baseball in D.C.
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