Tags: mexico cartels calderon

Calderon Says Mexico Won't Stop Fighting Cartels

Friday, 06 Aug 2010 08:02 AM


Mexican President Felipe Calderon earlier this week delivered an uncommonly blunt and dispiriting assessment of the broad sway held by violent drug traffickers throughout the besieged country.

From the "most modest little towns" to major cities, Calderon said, traffickers attack, intimidate and blackmail Mexican citizens as part of an illegal business that goes far beyond the simple transport of narcotics.

"Their business is no longer just the traffic of drugs. Their business is to dominate everyone else," Calderon said. "This criminal behavior is what has changed and become a defiance to the state, an attempt to replace the state" by exacting war taxes and taking up arms more powerful than those used by outgunned government forces.

Calderon was speaking in what appeared to be unscripted remarks during the last day of a three-day conference on national security held in Mexico City that has included the participation of church leaders, academics, security officials, business and civic groups and journalists.

He said the government would press ahead in its military-led battle against drug cartels. But in the unusually bleak portrait that he offered, he acknowledged the need to significantly alter the drug war strategy to include education as well as addiction and jobs programs and to involve greater segments of society, including religious groups.


Read the entire story at latimes.com

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