Local Impacts of Regional Integration
Edited By Shirlita Espinosa and Antonella Fazio
This collection is a great contribution to the field of violence and security studies. It presents six comparative, cross-regional analyses of violence and security, with both theoretical contributions and empirical researches conducted in Mexico, Morocco, Colombia, South Africa and Brazil. The book looks at violence and security within the broader contexts of globalization and regionalization as forces that shape the way discourses are understood with very concrete real-life consequences. Articles in the collection also discuss identity politics, indigenous cultures, race and ethnicity, and mass media in relation to violence and security. The book is uniquely tri-lingual with articles written in English, Spanish and French, and it also includes a preface by RISC president Harlan Koff.
Preface: Harlan Koff
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On 8 January 2016, Joaquín Archivaldo Guzmán Loera, known universally as “El Chapo,” was arrested by Mexican authorities during a raid in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. The arrest of one of the world’s most recognized leaders of organized crime was celebrated by state officials in Mexico and the United States, amongst others as an important victory in the “war on drugs.” While the symbolism of this arrest is significant, it is important to maintain perspective. Enrique Peña Nieto, the President of Mexico, has received some criticism amongst the applause for the recapture of El Chapo for celebrating the importance of this arrest too prominently. In an article for CNN, award-winning author Don Winslow wrote:
Anytime a major “kingpin” is captured, we see it as a victory in the war on drugs. We could decorate a long wall with posters of former kingpins: Miguel Angel Gallardo, Carlos Lehder, Griselda Blanco, Frank Lucas, Benjamin Arellano-Felix, Pablo Escobar of recent “Narcos” fame, Amado Carrillo Fuentes, the former “Lord of the Skies”, Osiel Cardenas and now Joaquin Guzman. I indulge in a list because it’s instructive. Each of these captures was supposed to bring victory in the war on drugs and each of these victories has resulted in absolutely nothing. (
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