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The Obama Administration record in Mexico

19 January 2017

From Latino Rebels:

The Merida Initiative is a diplomatic and military aid package designed to “disrupt organized criminal groups, institutionalize reforms to sustain the rule of law and support for human rights,” and has shaped the most significant financial aspects of our shared relationship with México. In 2009, the 111th Congress approved significant aid that helped the Obama administration continue counter-narcotics policies of administrations past.

Felipe Calderón (2006-2012), whose hands remain stained with the blood of tens of thousands of innocent Mexicans, obliged, accepted the assistance, and continued a self-initiated conflict. México has amassed a treacherous human rights record, where increased instances of torture, disappearances and extrajudicial killings, have defined México’s international image. The Obama administration accepted the human rights abuses, the State Department pushed for the extension of the Mérida Initiative, despite the obvious human rights violations.

The Clinton State Department had a sordid legacy in México, as depicted in a piece from Foreign Policy in Focus (FPIF). Multiple cables from officials provide examples of official corruption, even as officials boasted of sophisticated intelligence cooperation (Cables from 2009 and 2010, as cited in FPIF). State officials were aware of the rampant violence. Tt was communicated by officials, yet, the State Department refused to confront the abuses committed by Calderón.

The Obama administration ignored human rights abuses committed as the New York Times reported in 2011, by Mexico’s armed forces. Human rights groups openly criticized the involvement of the Mexican military in drug cases, a valid criticism, the Obama administration has done nothing, but cut $5 million dollars in aid to México. The government of Mexico has defended these actions, and has continued to use the military force, even under the administration of Enrique Peña Nieto.

Under Peña Nieto, the extrajudicial killings committed by the Mexican army continued, as overall violence has increased alongside it. The United States (and by obvious extension, the Obama administration) reacted in a minimal fashion, providing nothing but security assistance. Human rights organizations in July 2016 wrote a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry (2013-2017) asking for the State Department to assess the human rights requirements of the Merida Initiative, citing numerous examples of violations for consideration.

The United States has funded, and contributed through association, to the rise in corruption and violence. The Obama administration has, in effect, propped up Mexico’s corrupt drug war. It has forced Peña Nieto to govern México as a servile U.S. client state. It has frustrated countless people, the needless violence and corruption, created from a blank check from Washington, to appeal to the interests of the United States. As was written in Foreign Policy, “the blank check that top Mexican officials receive from the U.S. government against the scrutiny of civil society on both sides of the border has allowed the situation to spin entirely out of control.”

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