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The Drug War

Looking at the background of the drug war, where it began and the effects that it has to the current world, discuss possible ways that can be used to end the drug war.

Ending the Drug War: Finding Lasting Solutions Through Political, Social, and Economic Reforms.

Joseph Ballesteros


INTL 190

Dr. Michael Lettieri

18th March, 2021

Ending the Drug War: Finding Lasting Solutions Through Political, Social, and Economic


Without the many wars, the oil, minerals, energy, rich indigenous lifestyles, and a stable democracy could have put Mexico among the top countries in the world. However, although many political parties have continually taken power with the promise of democracy, only the trappings of democracy did they bring but none if any was serious about giving the country the democratic spine that could have curtailed so much evil and made the nation a choice of not only investors but even immigrants (Graebner, 1980).

Looking at the current image of Mexico, it is nothing but wanting. Every day if not every hour, reports of kidnappings, killings and wars parade themselves on different media avenues. They remain the common cup of everyday life in Mexico but also, like an activist’s voice, tell of the rot in social justice and governance systems in the land. Cartels rule while those in authorities remain unclear on which ground, they stand. Delinquency and the countries authorities seem to have shaken hands and agreed to leave lose ends to principled living and human rights.

However, those ranking higher in authority promise to wage war against the cartels and bring a cessation to the drug kingdom. Nevertheless, history points out to the danger within that kind of strategy, where killing of kingpins has not given any lasting results but has promoted more individuals taking over power, and the formation of branch syndicates which continue to fight over power and turf. These have resulted into dangers within where citizens are forced to make choices about which side to collude with for safety. Even those in county levels of government face the same situations. To make things worse, the current generations are finding this the way of life and are more inclined to choosing such lives than choices that better their future (O’Neil, 2009).

Amid the chaos, drug trafficking fuels the whole processes as it is the source of power for cartels. The more they can control the supply chains, the market and weaken the systems that run the country the more they thrive. Foreign policy and in this case, the united states one could help solve the problem by tracking out the cartel leaders and closing the trafficking routes. That has not worked too. The cartels are finding weak points in the united states system that facilitate a healthy environment to pursue the trade as the United States continues to use means that have proven naught in the fight against the drug war.

Numerous forces both internal and external seem to contribute to the plight of Mexico, making the dream of a peaceful and thriving nation seem unreachable, but nevertheless, a lasting solution is not farfetched. Treating any malady constitutes treating the symptoms and the cause. Although Mexico seems disrupted by the cartels, the solution lies with the people, the government and the international communities coming together. Not for another agreement but to find out how each has participated in fueling the drug war and how each is supposed to respond to provide a wholistic solution to the war than single-sides strategies that have not borne worthy results. With sobber political and social justice reforms, and a healthy approach to economic and international policy formations that will help control the environment the drug war operates in, it will be possible to end the drug war and its atrocities.


The following paper provides a view of what the wholistic solution to the drug war looks like. First, it looks at how democracy, having been denied Mexico contributed to numerous political loopholes that the cartel lords used to manipulate those in power for their own good and thus establish a trafficking web that was beyond reproach. Secondly, it looks at how the resultant feeble economy caused more locals to find solace in promising cartels than better economic gains. Then, it progresses into the drugs best market, the United States, arguing that its north to south combat policy will not help the Mexican case unless it reforms and also takes a south to north approach that will seal the left-out loopholes within it in as much as it wants to seal those in Mexico. Finally, the paper looks at how the current government has failed to put together its systems in support to the community and to stand against the cartels whose power is lesser than what it can wields, and also through meaningful policies that can enable better peaceful and economic environments that can discourage people out of the cartel web and into real progress. The paper concludes that direct warfare against cartels will not bring such lasting solutions like creating environments that do not favor their existence through the people’s initiative, that of the government, and the greatest partner and market, the United states.


The possibility of ending the drug war seems a farfetched idea as some scholars have it. First, claim that the united states market is so large making it difficult to cut the channels, in as much as there is a matching sophistication and spread of cartels in Mexico. With a booming market in the neighbouring and able boarder, the supply of drugs needed cannot be controlled. Secondly, the cartels have become so much branched out that it is almost impossible to clear them out. They have formed such a formidable supply power both locally and internationally that is not easy to control. Also, the much branching continues to fuel both internal violence among cartels and themselves, the authority and the people. Any disturbance would mean more violence. Thirdly, people have continually been disposed to many instances of human rights violations to an extent they have lost trust in the authorities to collude with them. Each day the people’s rights are violated and those of peoples in authority who could help by cartel gangs and most of them work hand in hand with the police and military and top government officials. It is difficult to work reforms while those who should protect you are killing you. They cannot be trusted. Then, the community also participates in bringing up a generation that supports the future growth or cartels as most of the young people in the cartel families are brought up in environments which support that life and they do not see anything wrong with it. Challenging such children and others who grow knowing that is the way of life is difficult. To them it is more of a lifestyle than a wrong culture. Besides, the availability of marijuana and alcohol at local celebrations make it easy for local users to get used to drug use. These in turn support the local market once they get to know of drugs that can be use other than alcohol making the environment supportive of the cartels and drug war (De Gruyter, 2016).

Politically, the cartels have also infiltrated the system of power, controlling most of the local government and the decisions of some major leaders to their advantage. It is thus difficult if not impossible to get the right policies working against them sooner. Also, some members of the police force and military are part of the cartels. Other than become the fighters against crime, they end up liaising with the delinquent making the war more difficult. Although they have the machinery, the training and more, they use it against the rightful objectives.

Cross border issues far much fuel the war as the biggest player the United States continues to pursue military wars which are the genesis of more violence than good. Moreover, their gun policy allows the selling of sophisticated weaponry which is later smuggled into Mexico, where cartels are ready and able to buy. The ease of weapon availability in Mexico making cartels to be armed like military combatants and difficult to deal with. The sophistication of weaponry most cartels are able to buy in the black market due to gun availability makes fighting them difficult as they can match most of what the government has. Besides, the united states have numerous unemployed citizens who find it desirable to work for paying cartels by helping them smuggle drugs and other merchandize. It is thus possible to stop the drug war when even the civilians are part of the network that destroys their country. As such, the drug war will not end.


Having numerous negative forces denying the possibilities of peace in Mexico means there is space for numerous possible solutions for each of the problem that fuels the drug war. Peaceful existence and the development of Mexico are possible. Making sustainable political reforms will bolster the confidence among the people as corruption and illegal cooperation of the police and cartels will be reduced. Creation of better social economic environment will counter the need to participate in cartels and a provide more options of profitably building towards a better and peaceful feature. In this regard, the state will be taking a persuasion stance that they can provide a better life for the Mexicans than that provided by the cartels.

The international initiatives like the Miranda initiative may not seem to have worked but are still feasible. From the formation of better foreign policies that do not respond through militarization alone but includes nonviolence means, gun control to prevent smuggling of unintended public use of military grade weapon can reduce the fire power of cartels, and the possible need for economically challenged individuals in international waters from participating in their networks. The main focus on the idea that it is not possible to rid the drug war is on the active violence, but on the other hand, there are a myriad of non-violent solutions deep seated in the hearts of may individuals, which if they are given, the same individuals would drop out of the cartel business overnight. The focus is not only on what solutions have not solved the drug war, it is also on what has not been done, and what has not been done and managed properly to give the best results, besides considering all workable perspectives.

Relevant Context

It is healthy to think of the drug war as a multifaceted concept that warrants multifaceted approaches. The greatest channel of failure concerning finding a workable solution means looking at the relegated areas in the efforts against the drug war. There has been a lot of areas and misunderstanding that have arose in this war. For instance, utilization of the same efforts over and over has only served to escalate the violence as most of these have been issues raising grievances among cartels. However, what has been greatly overlooked is the environment in which the solutions are being given, the kind of solutions offered, and whether the main players are acting their part accordingly.

It is worth to appreciate that Mexico has been a country that has had a trouble with forming into a reliable and stable democracy, much to its peril than good. Democracy afford a rule of law and an existence that is orderly and growth oriented with the ease of fighting such things that can cause undesirable impacts on a country. Without these, Mexico has been exposed for long to such a rule of authority that has allowed the infiltrations of malignant cartels who defy the possible control.

However, these have not been the only reason the waves of violence remain relentless. It has been thought that the drug war has deep connections to the United States. The United States is a major player in the drug war and it is true that they have not put enough effort for instance in gun control. Moiety of the weapons in the Drug war can be traced to the U.S. Also, their failure to take expeditious and sustainable measures against the then drug suppliers of Bolivia and Colombia which supplied the improperly regulated U.S market placed Mexico as a trade route that later became victim of trafficking. Later prohibition of drugs and anti-drug policies that criminalized drugs only made legal conflicts in Mexico to escalate to vigilante justice and violence.

This being the issue, anothe

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