Rule of Law

Why Did Homicides Increase So Much in 2017? What Should the Mexican Government Do About It?

The wave of violence and insecurity that Mexican citizens experienced and suffered in 2017, and the deaths that it has produced cannot be understood in a vacuum. This is not a phenomenon that occurs inexplicably and from one day to the next.   The fact that over 25,000 people lost their lives in one year is the by-product of a series of events and policies that began ten years ago with the so called “war” against organized crime and drug cartels headed by President Felipe Calderón.

Mexican Security Diagnosis and a Proposal to Eradicate Violence

Eleven years ago, Mexican President Felipe Calderón Hinojosa declared a “war against drugs,” a strategy that essentially consisted of full frontal assault on organized crime, as well as the implementation of an unconventional security strategy that incorporates the armed forces and the Federal Police in public security tasks outside of their area of competence.

Why are Homicides on the Rise Again in Mexico? What Can Be Done About It?

Summary by Eric L. Olson, Senior Advisor, Mexico Institute & Deputy Director, Latin American Program

The tragic news that Mexico set another record for homicides in 2017 is not only disheartening but puzzling. After a peak of 22,409 homicides in 2011, Mexico’s homicide rate began to trend downward and bottomed out at 15,520 in 2014.  Some of the cities with the highest homicide rates, like Ciudad Juarez and Tijuana, saw significant reductions as well.

Taking Stock of Mexico's Security Landscape

The Wilson Center's Mexico Institute invites you to attend its fifth annual Mexican security review. The forum will provide a careful examination of security challenges in Mexico, featuring presentations from leading policy analysts, including David Shirk, Viridiana Rios, Matthew Ingram, and others. Of particular interest will be a review of 2017 and a discussion of trends in 2018, including establishing new bonds in U.S.-Mexico military-to-military relations and strengthening the rule of law in Mexico.

Is Brazil’s Electronic Voting System Safe from Fraud and Manipulation?

A Conversation with Justice Gilmar Mendes, President of Brazil’s Superior Electoral Court

About the Police and the Internal Security Law

I wrote about this a year ago, but the current situation forces reiteration:

1.      I am opposed to the internal security law in the terms discussed by the Chamber of Deputies because it generates risks (described profusely by Mexico’s National Commission on Human Rights—CNDH) and it does not particularly solve any specific issue. It fails even its central objective: it does not provide legal security to the elements of the armed forces. Quickly, it will face numerous challenges in the courts prolonging the uncertainty in which military personnel operate.

Update on the State of Human Rights in Mexico with Luis Raúl González Pérez, President of Mexico's National Commission on Human Rights

The Mexico Institute of the Woodrow Wilson Center is pleased to host Mr. Luis Raúl González Pérez, President of Mexico’s National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH) for a conversation on the current state of human rights in Mexico. Please note that the conversation will be in Spanish.

The War on Drugs: The Narco States of North America

Too many Americans are dying from trafficked illegal drugs, and too many Mexicans are dying from violence related to the criminal gangs that traffic drugs. That is the unfortunate summary of a shared problem: Mexican organized crime groups help feed U.S. demand for illegal drugs, and in turn, many billions of U.S. dollars feed the violence and corruption which the criminal groups spawn in Mexico.