Patt Morrison for January 16, 2009

What Happens if the Mexican Government Collapses?

Even with the repeated stories of increasing violence, the growing influence of the drug cartels and the rampant corruption and dysfunction of the state security forces, Mexico still seemed to be a relatively stable country. That perception might change somewhat now that Mexico was listed, along with Pakistan, in a U.S. Military Joint Forces Command report as the two leading candidates for "rapid and sudden collapse." The report says that Mexico's government and civil society are under sustained assault by criminals gangs and drug cartels. What kind of reverberations would we feel if Mexico became a failed state?

* Rear Admiral John Richardson, director of strategy & policy for the U.S. Joint Forces Command
* Jorge Castaneda, former Foreign Minister of Mexico from 2000 - 2003; professor of Latin American studies at New York University


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