In Santiago Chile, Barack Obama focused his attention on the problems arising due to narcotics wars, gun trafficking, and illegal immigration (funded by revenues from drug trafficking).
During a series of pivotal stops in Central and South America, Barack kept re-emphasizing that the entire world needs to make the fight against drug trafficking from Central and South America into the U.S. a top concern. Barack made it a global issue by pointing out the revenues that are being funneled from drug trafficking into terrorist training camps abroad.
Guatemala Drug Arrests
The security situation in northern Guatemala, not unlike most of Central America, is deteriorating as Mexican based drug cartels extend their reach into neighboring countries. This reduces the effectiveness of local police and adds more violence and crime to a region that “boasts” one of the highest murder rates in all of North, South and Central America.
In December of 2010 the Guatemalan authorities mandated a sixty day state of siege in the regions of Alta Verapaz in an attempt to make a dent into the Los Zetas. Los Zetas have been known to drive their own fully armored caravan of tanks through police check points up and down the Yucatan with loud speakers attached to their tanks loudly proclaiming…”We are Los Zeta..we are coming through your check point…no one needs to die…let us through.” Oddly enough, this, more than not, is exactly what happens when a handful of Yucatan police check point guards are overtaken by the excessive force of these “above the law” drug cartel tank caravans. In other nearby regions, the government’s obvious absence allows Los Zetas to exploit these areas where no power structure is in place.
Another huge concern is the fact that the weapons seized in a recent bust in Alta Verapaz were geater than the stockpiles of most regional army brigades. In the struggle for land and power, the potential for more and more of these terror training camps to sprout up in areas where the law has been rendered virtually ineffective/effectual?
Daily gunfire and human kidnapping trafficking with seemingly no remedy gives citizens the sense that these cartels are not only above the law…they are the law.
South American drug cartels traffic in more than sixty percent of the cocaine that enters into US borders. Guatemala’s newly-appointed attorney general Claudia Paz recently stated that “Guatemala’s state is a very weak state and doesn’t have the resources to face the the problems as grave as that of narco-trafficking. For traffickers move down here was very easy” where there is practically no presence of state or law.
As Mexico and the U.S. strengthening its boarder control policy these routes through Guatemala and other neighboring countries in central America become even more of a viable option and the cycle continues…more drugs, less police enforcement, more human trafficking, more potential for terror camps and plots against the U.S.