Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Calling Blackjack Pershing

Based on reports out of Strategypage, I've worried that Mexico could be the first real foreign policy challenge for President Obama in his term of office.

The worries aren't going away (tip to Strategypage email updates):

While the public and media are occupied with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the potential conflict with Iran, the downward spiral in Pakistan, and a global economic meltdown, a new, rapidly-evolving danger — narco-cartels and gangs — has been developing in Mexico and Latin America. And it has the potential to trump global terrorism as a threat to the United States.

Mexico is gripped by a set of inter-locking, networked criminal insurgencies. Daily violence, kidnappings, assassinations of police and government officials, beheadings and shoot-outs are the result of violent combat between drug cartels, gangs, and the police. The cartels vying for domination of the lucrative drug trade are seeking both market dominance and freedom from government interference. Tijuana, Ciudad Juarez, and other border towns are racked with violence. Mexico City itself is not immune. An infusion of police and military remains stymied as corrupt officials chose to side with the cartels.

It has been a while since our military conducted operations in Mexico.

Time to dust off and update intervention plans?