The truce declared in 2012 may have been imperfect and controversial but positive lessons must be learned amid the country’s current crisis of violence.
As activists around the world participate in a Global Day of Action against criminalisation of drug use, evidence from the multi-billion dollar War on Drugs in Colombia suggests that militarized suppression of production and supply has displaced millions of people as well as the problem, not least to Mexico. The wrong lessons are being exported to Central America and beyond, but a groundswell of expert and popular opinion internationally is calling for alternative approaches to regulating the use and trade in drugs.
A new alliance between the Mexican security forces and citizen ‘self-defence’ groups in Michoacán state has brought some short term success in the fight against the Knights Templar cartel. But what will be the long-term consequences of legitimizing heavily armed vigilante groups in Mexico?
Writing exclusively for SustainableSsecurity.org, Elizabeth Wilke argues that a new conceptualization of insecurity and instability is needed in a world with greater and freer movement of goods, services and people – both legal and illicit – greater demands on weakening governments and the internationalization of local conflicts. The new insecurity is fundamentally derived from the responses of people and groups to greater uncertainty in an increasingly volatile world. Governments, and increasingly other actors need to recognize this in order to promote sustained stability in the long-term, locally and internationally.