Mexico’s drug war has claimed more than 18,000 lives in the past three years. Two weeks ago, the wave of violence took a new turn, as gunmen in Ciudad Juárez carried out deadly attacks on American consular employees and their families for the first time. Nonetheless, argues Shooting Up author and Brookings fellow Vanda Felbab-Brown, “a more effective Mexican anti-drug strategy, supported by U.S. assistance, is finally underway.” Writing in The Daily Beast, Felbab-Brown notes that the Mexican government has moved from focusing on decapitating drug cartels to a multifaceted response that seeks to dismantle entire networks while increasing investment in public goods and social services. “Such bonds between the community and the state are what at the end of the day will allow the state to prevail over the cartels,” she concludes.
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