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August 12, 2005

Drug Warfare Hits Acapulco

(originally posted August 12, our blog is experiencing some technical problems due to excessive comment and trackback spam)

DRCNet's "Prohibition in the Media" blog resumes publishing today after a hiatus. We comment on reporting by Reuters AlertNet, Reuters Foundation publication for international humanitarian nonprofits, on an outbreak of drug trade violence in the Mexican Pacific resort town of Acapulco.

According to Reuters, "A fierce fight between Mexican drug cartels that has killed more than 600 people this year has now hit the Pacific beach resort of Acapulco with gangland executions and grenade attacks on sun-kissed streets." Police say that it is a fight between the Gulf Cartel and traffickers from the state of Sinaloa for control of border routes into the United States and over production of marijuana and heroin in the western states of Michoacan, Jalisco and Guerrero, a poor mountainous area where Acapulco is located. Acapulco's mayor, Alberto Lopez Rosas, told Reuters, "This is completely new for us" and "It is an upsetting situation which has surprised all of us in Acapulco." Political leaders at all levels of government have called for "staying the course" in the fight against drug traffickers.

In February 2003, a Mexican congressman from Sinaloa, Gregorio Urias German, attended the DRCNet-organized Latin America conference, "Out from the Shadows, Ending Drug Prohibition in the 21st Century" ("Saliendo de las Sombras: Terminando de le ProhibiciĆ³n de las Drogas en el Sigle XXI" en EspaƱol). Urias argued that "If we can't even discuss the alternatives, if we can't even admit the drug war is a failure, then we will never solve the problem." He said that existing forums, such as the UN and the Organization of American States, are not fruitful places for discussion, "because only the repressive policies of the United States are discussed at these forums." The alternatives Urias were referring to included drug legalization. He is one of many leaders in Mexico who believe that drug prohibition is the root cause of drug trade violence as is now being experienced in Acapulco.

While it is not the job of media outlets like Reuters to take a position favoring legalization in their news reporting, they will be doing a better job when they start to include leaders like Urias in their articles who hold that point of view.

Read the Reuters article at:

http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/N11593386.htm

View footage of Congressman Urias and other Latin American leaders speaking at our conference at:
http://stopthedrugwar.org/shadows/

Send feedback to Reuters AlertNet via the web at http://www.alertnet.org/userfeedback.htm or by e-mail to [email protected]. Keep it polite and positive, at least for now -- there's no reason to assume at this point that they will not be receptive to hearing our ideas.

- David Borden, DRCNet

Posted by dborden725 at August 12, 2005 08:15 PM

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