Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Chapo in the States?

Sylvia Longmire, whose writing I don't know very well but quite like, closes a recent column with the following warning:
Mexican cartels have demonstrated time and time again their uncanny ability to adjust to changes brought on by law enforcement actions and market activity. They are already masters at trafficking drugs, whether by air, land (above and below), or sea. There is no reason to doubt they can become masters at producing them – and doing it well – in any country they choose.
This scenario seems really unlikely to me, at least for a sustained period of time. In terms of the supply chain, a Mexican kingpin has no reason to be involved in the American production of weed for the American market. For those in charge of production in the US, said kingpin brings nothing to the table. He's dead weight. Why would criminals making millions in the US keep answering to (and kicking cash up to) a boss upon whom they don't have to rely for anything? Even if they are initially sponsored by him, they would eventually cut ties and establish themselves in the States and become not Mexican criminals, but American criminals, much the way the Cosa Nostra in the US has little to do with Sicily and everything to do with New York. The basic reasons Mexican kingpins have been able to become so powerful are because they are gatekeepers, ideally situated at the US border, and they are huge marijuana producers. Take the production and that geographic good fortune out of the equation, and they have no role.

No comments: