Sunday, November 8, 2009

Clinton on Zedillo and Mexican Politics

Excélsior reports that the new Taylor Branch book based on his interviews with Bill Clinton included some laudatory portions about Ernesto Zedillo. The latter president also had some less laudatory things to say about the Mexican political climate:
...Clinton considered ex-president Ernesto Zedillo "the most astute economic manager in Latin America", but "his problem was that the drug cartels had so much money compared to the government...the income from drugs generated corruption on a spectacular scale.

The visit

In one part related to his visit to Mexico of February 1999, Clinton commented to Branch that the scandal surrounding ex-president Carlos Salinas and his family provoked criticism in Mexico of Zedillo, that according to the account, "he was criticized for allowing a persecution [of Raúl Salinas] that exposed so many intrigues among the most powerful families in the nation, with witnesses and prosecutors disappearing for murder or with enormous fortunes".

According to the book, Zedillo always told Clinton "that he had no alternative but to allow the persecution of Salinas to proceed. Otherwise, everyone would have believed that the case involved the worst elements of Mexican culture, such as homosexual blackmail".
I can't quite muster a response beyond, How about that.

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