In an interview by Carmen Aristegui, the security specialist Edgardo Buscaglia says that “The violence is like a perfect storm in which many factors are interacting to lead Mexico into a civil war scenario”
Will we see acting governors and even current cabinet members of Felipe Calderon’s administration in prison before the end of this presidential term? Could a full scale civil war erupt before 2012?
For as preposterous as this sounds, it could happen in the short term in Mexico, says Edgardo Buscaglia, a consultant to UNITAR, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research and faculty member at the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de Mexico and the University of Virginia.
Faced with the violent events this week in various parts of the country and how they occurred, some commentators caution that we face a new escalation of violence in Mexico: the stage of terrorism.
The car bomb explosion in Ciudad Juarez opened a debate about whether this could be classified as a terrorist act.
"It's important not to create the perception that it was an act indiscriminately aimed against civilians. It was not placed at a public market. It was clearly aimed at the police, "said Mexican Ambassador to the United States, Arturo Sarukhan, speaking at a forum in the U.S. Congress.
That terrorism does not exist has been the official view of the Felipe Calderon administration.
However, the ambassador did not mention what happened last Friday in Nuevo Laredo, where 12 people were killed and 21 wounded during armed clashes on the streets in broad daylight.
Neither did he speak of the slaughter of 18 innocent civilians at a birthday party that occurred in Torreon.
Perhaps because, as the PRI congressman Jorge Carlos Ramírez Marín stated, "Everybody knows that the explosion of car bombs are terrorist acts, and the government knows how serious it is to recognize an organized criminal group as a terrorist organization."
However, regardless of opinion, the fact is that the wave of violence increased last weekend, causing terror in Los Pinos, the official residence and offices of the Mexican presidency.
Maybe that's why the President Calderon, or his counsel, is seeking to change the perception of reality. The perception that his administration is overwhelmed by current events and that his strategy to gain the support required to turn his National Security Strategy into an official state policy that goes beyond his term has also failed.
Many see his National Security Strategy as a set of reforms and laws that limit civil liberties under the pretext of the urgency to create permanent anti-terrorism and anti-organized crime legislation.
Jalisco, Colima, Morelos, Sinaloa, Nuevo Leon, Nayarit, Sonora, Guerrero and above all Chihuahua and Tamaulipas have had to learn to live with the reality of daily terror.
And then there is the global murder capitol of Ciudad Juárez, where for some inexplicably lucky reason only 2 federal policemen and a civilian doctor died.
Where once the United States had been particularly attentive to what was happening in Ciudad Juarez, now it is also deeply concerned about what is happening in Nuevo Laredo.
Nuevo Laredo happens to be the largest inland port for commerce between Mexico and the U.S. where at least 12,000 tractor trailers full of industrial, agricultural and consumer goods pass daily. A permanent state of chaos in Nuevo Laredo would seriously impact trade between both nations.
Today it is assumed that the Mexican government is unable to control the violence that affects it’s innocent citizens. And if this is happening on the border with the U.S. then the national security of the U.S is also affected.
For some, the forecasts of Edgardo Buscaglia may seem exaggerated.
This may not come to fruition because, as Mexico was described in 2006 before the current drug war began, it is a country of stable institutions capable of surviving despite the inept and corrupt rule of government officials.
Unfortunately this point of view is sounding increasingly hollow with each passing day as the terror and the deaths increase.
However, if the facts of what has occurred the last four years of the Calderon administration has convinced this security expert of the apocalypse that is approaching, is there not someone close to the president to suggest and advise on a different plan before it is too late?
To continue along the same path, the tsunami of violence will eventually drown a lot of innocent people in blood.
This tsunami will leave an apocalyptic land in it’s wake, so dangerous that other foreign powers will have to intervene to contain the growing strength of the Mexican monster of violence. This is not only a danger to Mexico, but also for the rest of the world.
More Blood Coming
On Wednesday, Dr. Buscaglia and Carmen Aristegui spoke on her radio show:
"Violence will be increasingly bloody, unfortunately, because violence is a social disease that requires ever larger doses to achieve the same effect.
"This is one of the unfortunate consequences of the negligence of the current executive branch, which has continued in power with cabinet ministers who have been involved in corruption that has been ravaging this country for the last 10 years or more.”
"We must begin to see that these acts of terrorism, unfortunately, and I say this with sadness, they may become more frequent if the Mexican government does not take the steps that you and I have talked about since four years ago on air by radio and television.”
"We have to start taking these steps. Afghanistan has already outlined a major political agreement. It is time for Mexico to take the lead and begin to delineate certain policies as did Colombia, which has achieved results in the last four or five years.”
"Mexico can do it, but not with characters you have in President Calderon's cabinet. In today’s political arena such measures will not be implemented.”.
"We have to start legal criminal proceedings within the rule of law against state governors, presidents of municipal assemblies, even cabinet ministers that surround the president.”
"These measures are so unthinkable that today they seem like science fiction. It seems preposterous, but that is what it is going to have to take. What has to be done, has to be done now. Whether President Calderon likes it or not, these measures must be taken.”
"This can’t wait for the elections of 2012 and a change in the government. "What should normally happen is for the president to call for a change in policy and a restructuring of his cabinet. A renewal of the political arena with the involvement of the country's political forces and parties.
"They must be brought together with actions not with a pitch as President Calderon likes to do but with concrete actions. Call the other parties to support, but with actions, with cabinet ministers chosen from other parties, for example. With concrete actions you assign responsibility for implementing these new measures. "
Regarding the current situation in Mexico and the future ahead, Buscaglia said: "It's like a perfect storm in which many factors are interacting to lead Mexico into a civil war scenario in a very short time if no appropriate measures are taken such as to prosecute governors and even cabinet ministers in Felipe Calderón’s administration”