“I would say Mexico is a state with a parallel power in its drug cartels. It’s not a narco state yet; we still have a government. But they have true power, beginning with the right to tax (protection money). I would say we are in great danger (of becoming a narco state.)”–Victor Clark Alfaro, narcotraficante expert at San Diego State University, June 3 2009
Alfaro was speaking to Linda Diebel, reporter at the Toronto Star. She has a commendable piece out today–one that cuts through the bullshit bodycounting and fear-thumping generalizations the major US media coughs up on a daily basis. Read Diebel’s piece here. Note the happy horsehit the Mexican ambassador to Canada shovels out at the end of the article….like doing deep kneebends in the void.
Two weeks ago I posted on the parallel state model that Alfaro refers to–new readers can find that here. For further reading I suggest venturing to Ivan Briscoe’s The Proliferation of the Parallel State.
Based on a close study of Pakistan and Guatemala, as well as a number of other cases ranging from Fujimori’s Peru to contemporary Guinea-Bissau, this Working Paper sets out to define the novel concept of the “parallel state”. It explains the emergence of these states in contexts where democracy and open markets have recently been installed, and analyses the ways in which political leaders and the public connect with entrenched criminal groups.
Briscoe’s timely analysis can be downloaded as a pdf (English or Spanish) at FRIDE, Fundación para las Relaciones Internacionales y el Diálogo Exterior
* That’s Los Zetas bandera at top.