U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Wednesday said that U.S. agents this week arrested 755 people suspected of working with Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel. The latest arrests were in California, Maryland, and Minnesota. Agents also seized $59 million, 13 tons of cocaine, and 8 tons of marijuana in a 21-month operation. Mexican cartels’ distribution networks now reach 230 U.S. cities. (The New York Times)
What the commentators said
The U.S. has pressing crises to deal with in the Middle East, Pakistan, and Russia, said David Rieff in the Houston Chronicle, but the “far closer to home” crisis in Mexico could be just as dangerous—and it isn’t getting near the “attention that its gravity requires.” The Mexican drug cartels, locked in an increasingly bloody power struggle, are trying to “tame and suborn the Mexican state,” with some success.
President Obama shouldn’t follow his predecessor’s mistake of ignoring the threat “virtually under our noses,” said former U.S. immigration agent Michael Cutler in NewsWithViews.com. The “lunacy in Mexico” has already spread to the U.S. “Clearly the only solution is to take on the cartels and win!”—and Mexico can’t, or won’t.
Hey, look, said Andrés Rozental and Stanley Weiss in The Dallas Morning News. “Mexico is fulfilling its responsibility with a war on supply,” and “at great cost, in blood and treasure.” Things won’t get better until the U.S. does its part, with “a real war on demand.” That probably means “the gradual legalization of some drugs,” such as marijuana and methamphetamines.