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  1. #1
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    Default Compulsory reading for DR politicians

    To all DR politicians reading the board, please read and take due note (or better yet, act upon)

    Foreign Policy: State of War

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    Yes that is indeed a sobering read & thank you for posting it. Can I pose a question? Is it possible that the situation is different in the DR because the Government and military are so involved in this business? The article suggests that Mexican authorities have lost the battle which now rages between rival gangs. Could a state-sponsored 'gang' actually act as an agent for keeping the excesses under control? And is that what we have here in the DR?

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    I have no idea! I am not even in the country at the moment.

    My uninformed opinion is that the situation is somewhere in the middle, i.e. there is some sort of silent consent, or tolerance if you would, of merchandise going through the country.

    It is also true that. as the article says, trafficking in Mexico has surged because it has become more difficult in the Caribbean.

    Personally, I see one resemblance between the two realities, that is, drugs are exacerbating violent behaviors of marginal actors, which in the case of Mexico, were a few "bronco" villages in the mountains, and in the case of DR, are (yet unorganized) "tigueres" in the barrios.

    How long will they stay unorganized?

    For reference, the Italian Calabria mafia, once unorganized, got into trafficking, and nowadays it grosses 44 BILLION euros per year. It has so much cash that it owns substantial parts of the Eastern European economies, and oftentimes just acts as a bank for drug purchases of the Sicilian mafia. It is deeply interwoven in the civil society, and you can safely says that Calabria has been lost for Italy.

    Or, as another example, in Phoenix there have been 300 kidnappings last year.

    So, I wonder if it's not a better strategy to nip it in the bud instead of losing a whole country to the narcos.

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    Yes I would agree it is better to nip it in the bud but if the country has gone beyond that point because of institutionalised involvement? Unfortunately I don't think it is just 'silent consent' by Government and military - that used to be the case about 20 years ago. What I suspect we have now is deep involvement, the sort of things Senator Wilton Guerrero has been talking about. And while that is scary it is not as scary as what is going on in Mexico. In other words the very involvement of governmental and military personnel ensures control of the worst excesses of violence (as Mexico can't and doesn't). My guess is that everyone plays the game that tourism is the great moneymaker and therefore security issues pertaining to this are addressed, whilst underneath it all greater profits are being made from the narco industry. In a sense what I think we have here is the lesser of two evils. I don't see us going the way of Mexico whilst there is institutional involvement. If that institutional involvement was to stop, or be stopped, who knows? We do know that something always rushes in to fill a vacuum.

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    Thank you Pierods for the link. Fascinating article. Very disturbing.

    Lambada, I believe the Mexican government is heavily infiltrated also, however the 2,000 mile US Mexican border with 250 million legal crossing and an estimated 50 million illegal crossing per year makes smuggling into the US far easier from Mexico than the route from the DR by boat or airplane over the Mona passage crossing to Puerto Rico, or north to the Bahamas and Florida. A recent US intelligence threat assessment identified Mexico (and Pakistan) as dangerously unstable.

    Of course Mexico's drug violence results from "prohibition" in the USA and Europe. Decriminalization followed by massive efforts at education and treatment would address the problem and remove the profits for narcotraffickers, but that is easier said than done and creates another set of problems.

    Unfortunately, the evidence suggests that the DR has also become a narco-democracy heavily dependent on billions of dollars in revenues from the business of transiting drugs, and now exacerbated by growing distribution and use within the country. In 1983 when crack cocaine arrived in NYC the results were horrendous with entire neighborhoods decimated and a generation of youth badly damaged. A similar process appears to be at work in the DR.

    I think drug trafficking and associated problems are beginning to spiral out of control in the DR to the point that the government, if it wanted to, may be unable to put the genie back in the bottle!

    The night of Valentine's day in formerly peaceful Cabarete saw stabbings on the beach followed by a raging gun battle in the very center of town (at least a dozen shots) that moved on to Callejon de la Loma where the battle continued for over an hour. Grapevine rumor has it that the precipitating cause was a turf struggle over drug distribution points and that young gangeros from several different towns were involved. A gringo tourist friend of mine who was caught in the cross-fire in the center of Cabarete on the night of the Dia del Amor reported to me that he was "terrified". This incident does not portend well for our future here. Of course, at the same time the Dutch man was killed in ProCab and the Puerto Plata National police were arrested for their involvement in drug distribution.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Islander777 View Post
    Of course Mexico's drug violence results from "prohibition" in the USA and Europe. Decriminalization followed by massive efforts at education and treatment would address the problem and remove the profits for narcotraffickers...
    I doubt said prohibition will be lifted, as there's probably more money to be made in keeping these drugs illegal. Too many palms are being greased in this industry, on the Mexican and US sides.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FernieBee View Post
    This is the reason the war on drugs will not be won...

    There's too much money to be made in feeding people's voracious appetites for recreational pharmaceuticals.

    That's one of several pictures, from a raid in Mexico City, which netted over 200 million US$, almost two years ago...

    LINK
    link


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    Same difference - 44 billion euros is the GDP of Estonia or what Microsoft grossed in 2005, for ONE mafia organization only.

    The photo is very compelling though.

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    If the DR ever gets around to manufacturing and/or importing large quantities of methamphetamines: God help us, all!

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