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Hawkish Stances Needed to Fight Crime in Central America Honduras Weekly

Hawkish Stances Needed to Fight Crime in Central America Honduras Weekly

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The "Sweeping" of Criminal Organizations Pose Increased Security Challenges for Latin America
The "Sweeping" of Criminal Organizations Pose Increased Security Challenges for Latin America

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Published by: Jerry E. Brewer, Sr. on Jan 24, 2012
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01/24/2012

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Hawkish Stances Needed to Fight Crime in Central America
Hawkish Stances Needed to Fight Crime inCentral America
Tuesday, 24 January 2012 07:49
“  
 Part of Central America's failures in preparedness and vigilance stems from a lack of trust in government enforcement measures, both police and military. There is quite ahistory of past abuses and a thought process that any armed force was dangerous toliberty in general. The issue begs the question as to how will these countries providesafety and security for the people? 
’  
 
By Jerry Brewer
The Mexican drug cartels' armed challenges and reign have been and are vicious fights with ever-increasing volatility and escalating death rates. With numbers showing over50,000 killed in this quagmire of reaction versus action, the displacement of thenarcoterrorists was inevitable against Mexico's strong arm of military armed force andUS assistance and support.Collateral damage is now a key area of focus as Mexico's large broom-like sweep forceseven more multifaceted challenges to a seriously bruised and battered northern cone of Central America and points further south.Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador are being hit hard by the expansion of transnational criminal organizations (TCO) into their regions in an attempt to find andhold more permissive operating environments. These northern triangle nations areexperiencing murder rates "two to four times higher than Mexico," with UN statistics asa guide, identifying Honduras as "the most violent country on earth."How did such short range vision and wide spread criminal impunity allow violent crimeto flourish and organize into virtual mobile paramilitary-style armies of assassins?The failure to forecast and act against impending threat and country vulnerability has been an intense failure by government and homeland intelligence services. Proactiveand tactical engagement and containment was thus immediately lost by enforcement
 
officials and military forces. This, much like a tossed match to the ground turning dry land into a raging inferno.Part of Central America's failures in preparedness and vigilance stems from a lack of trust in government enforcement measures, both police and military. There is quite ahistory of past abuses and a thought process that any armed force was dangerous toliberty in general. The issue begs the question as to how will these countries providesafety and security for the people?Costa Rica and Panama are examples of nations that have essentially done away withtheir military. Guatemala's government reduced its military in the 1990s by two-thirds.hese acts of neutering a homeland's security forces and military has obviously allowedstronger forces to seek refuge and strongholds on foreign soil as the heat is turned up onthem from neighboring nations aggressively proactive in seeking to kill or capture them.Former Guatemalan President Álvaro Colom said it best when he announced toreporters, "drug gangs are invading Central America."Panama is a critical choke point and gateway from South America into Central America.Panamanians stand landlocked as the hub from drug source countries and guerrilla-style paramilitary insurgents to the south and smuggling routes to the north. Within thisisthmus nation there are mixed emotions about remilitarization as unwarranted, withsome calling for a neutral stance that addresses better education, rehabilitation,delinquency, and lesser prevention methods.The question that must be asked is, with Panama's vast natural resources and globalposition of importance within the Americas, how can they not have a strong military andpolice presence to strategically defend their homeland? How can this issue evenremotely be described as unwarranted? The slaughter to the north may hold some of thetrue answers and telegraph continued fluidity in movement throughout the region.The differences in enforcement methods by either police or military are obvious enough.But in the case of policing within many of these Central American nations it is fact thatno local, county or state police agency within South or Central America, as well as theUS, was ever created to handle such a strategic and tactical threat by superior military arms and espionage strategies. Moreover, there can be no reasonable expectation of any police force within those circles having or acquiring on its own the resources necessary to effectively fight insurgents and groups such as these that are so well trained andfinanced, short of military assistance.The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, guerrillas are reported to becontinuing to traverse Panama and trudging into Central America. The insurgents havethreatened to abduct high profile Panamanian officials, this in retaliation for theapprehension of rebels by authorities. The guerrilla insurgents continue to move northin support of narcotrafficking, arms sales, and other criminal enterprises. As effective strategic and tactical enforcement interdiction continues to evolve and tosweep through Mexico and most points south, those in the path will fare in directproportion to their homeland's capabilities and preparation to stand successfully. Local

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