enough, a state policeman who asked not to be identified said that investigators foundnumerous photographs of municipal police officers at the residence involved, an apparenthit list of officials sentenced to death. Further intelligence revealed that each of thephotographs listed the officer's name and assigned location, along with maps to theirhomes.The Mexican presidential spokesman at the time, Ruben Aguilar, said federal efforts to
stop the violence in Nuevo Laredo “had been successful.” A week later another city official
of Nuevo Laredo, City Councilman Leopoldo Ramos Ortega, was shot dead as heinnocently sat in his truck. Ramos also chaired the council's security committee.A false complacency began as a man named Omar Pimentel was then selected as Nuevo
e chief, replacing Alejandro Dominguez who was killed in a hail of gunfire on
his first day on the job. Pimentel stated that he himself was “not looking for bad guys tofight, nights on patrol, (or) raids” –
and no crime scenes for him. “I have simply come
here as a political figure for the Mayor.”
In Nuevo Laredo nearly 200 people were murdered in 2005, and other victims simplyvanished. What was just as appalling is that nearly 20 police officers, including the chief of police and city councilman, had been gunned down.
President Calderon’s administration inherited an existing “drug war.” The sophisticated
armaments, tactics and the aggressive nature of a previously, practically, untouched drugcartel hierarchy began to diabolically confront local police, political officials, and themilitary head-on with superior firepower. Local police became useless as many of theirrank and file simply fled. Local Mexican law enforcement was no match for this powerdirected against them.
Under President Calderon’s direction the Mexican military and federal police became
increasingly successful in carrying out operations to remove top cartel leaders. Mexico'sarmed forces number about 225,000, and some of their military roles include not onlynational defense, but narcotics control. The Mexican Congress passed legislation in 2009expanding the investigative and intelligence capabilities of the Federal Police, which itself has expanded from 20,000 personnel to approximately 34,000.
Mexico’s political apparatus must work to achieve common ground on understanding the
real threats to the Mexican homeland. Failure to do so and act strategically could certainlyresult in a failed state.This century, transnational organized crime groups have flourished throughout the world,copying legitimate business practices, forming strategic alliances and pursuing jointventures. They are threatening the autonomy of states. The infiltration and forging of alliances with corrupt government officials remains a critical component.With corruption and organized crime as close allies for success, the Mexican governmentmust continue its efforts to reorganize local police forces to effectively coordinate with thetactical power and expertise of the military and federal police. The welfare and safety of Mexico is at stake, and dependent on elected officials to do the right thing.
erry Brewer is C.E.O. of Criminal Justice International Associates, a global threat mitigation firm headquartered in northern Virginia. His website is located at www.cjiausa.org.TWITTER: