Mexico requires a cleansing at the political level in order to address corruption and the control wielded by organized crime, says a Columbia University professor.
Edgardo Buscaglia said in an interview with El Universal that crime gangs have infiltrated the different levels of government to the point where no police force operates independently of criminal organizations.
But to clean up the police services it’s necessary to begin at the political level, said the law and economics researcher.
Since 2008, in those areas where drug gangs have established themselves, they are the local authority, not government representatives. Buscaglia claims that some 77% of the country’s municipal governents are now controlled by drug cartels.
The police, he said, are not corrupt on their own, they have their boss and it’s not simply their supervisor or their director but a politician. Furthermore, all police forces are fragmented in that they are working for different criminal groups.
Buscaglia cites confrontations that have occurred between municipal police who work for the Sinaloa cartel and those who work for Los Zetas.
To deal with this situation there has to be a national political accord that brings about a cleansing at the political level followed by a clean-up of police forces at all levels.
During another interview this past week Buscaglia offered an assessment of the situation today in Mexico. Among the points he made:
• State controls at all three levels — municipal, state and federal — collapsed many years ago.
• The president is a coordinator and facilitator of disarray and impunity.
• Where controls collapse, massacres, corruption and crime increase.
• Mexico is an exporter of organized crime and hemispheric insecurity.
• An asset investigation should begin at the top: the president should be subject to such an investigation and have to explain his and his family’s assets and their business relationships. “They should start at the top and work down, as in a serious democracy.”
• Mexico is a simulation of democracy.
• The markets are oligarchic in which a few are given control of different sectors in a politically protected market and the international community does nothing.
• Civil society today is protesting in the streets because the situation today is “despicable.” But before long the protestors will be bought off by the main political parties with payoffs.
• “I am offended. I am disgusted by this situation.”