Mexican forces seize control of entire Acapulco police department


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/09/26/guerrero-coordination-group.html


#2

Dismantling the police. What a nice idea. :thinking:

ETA: Teh pedants have failed to notice my reply was extremely succinct.

And off we march into a mile-long thread about military aspects that have no relation to the story…


#3

… and replacing them with the army?


#4

On the one hand that’s a horrible idea for obvious reasons.
On the other hand, I believe you’ll find that the US army actually does much better at not murdering civilians than most US police forces.


#5

True, I always interpret these things from a UK perspective where the police are possibly somewhat less terrible.


#6

It sounds like that department had pretty much already been dismantled and replaced with a drug cartel. Unless the federal government made that up as a pretext?


#7

Oh yeah, I’m a Briton too. And yeah, our police force are (despite their many failings) not very murderous. And when they do kill someone they shouldn’t, it is actually a scandal rather than business as usual.

But the US is a different ballgame.


#8

In how many US cities would this be an improvement?


#9

My guess is that most standing armies don’t have the basic problem of careerism. I don’t know the average enlistment period of a Mexican solider, but if it’s a relatively short stint as with the US or western Europe, there’s less structural incentive for go-along, get-along to last your career. You are going to do something else, eventually, and might not see the need to invest in your long-term ability to siphon off a font of corruption, which certainly has to be a strong one there in Mexico.


#10

I mean…


#11

I was told that the feds are the “good” force in Mexico.


#12

All%20bad


#13

U.S. Civilians anyways. And they also use contractors for those killings some of the time.


#14

Nope, I wouldn’t doubt that’s what happened.


#15

Sure, but the US military is managed by an officer corps, which is internally notorious for careerism and which has a policy of promote or perish. The venality of many a chairborne commander and corruption within the military bureaucracy and its Congressionally doled out neigh-unlimited budget is legendary. In fact a lot of Founding Fathers and their contemporaries regarded a standing army as an existential threat to the republic, and would likely be appalled by our modern military-industrial complex.

But all that said, I’m not sure comparing the USM to US law enforcement agencies is apples to apples. For one thing, it’s a lot harder to be on the take or engage in organized crime within the military (which is not to say it doesn’t still occur), but for cops is a constant temptation with predictable results. For another, soldiers largely surrender their freedom for the duration of their service, whereas cops are supercitizens effectively immune to many of the laws of the land.

There is one comparison I’d make though, and that’s that one of the major driving factor in US police corruption is the militarization of law enforcement who are functionally not that different from an army occupying their own country and at war with its populace.


#16

I guess the question is which do you think is more likely to be hopelessly corrupt in this case—the police or the Feds?


#17

It sounds like they’re… going loco down in Southwestern Mexico


#18

General consensus here is both, but the police are more closely tied to the cartels, while the feds are generally bad actors on their own. That’s the impression I get from talking to people in TJ.

ETA: My guess is that because they’re helping the US with its “drug war”, of course the feds are opposed to cartel interests.


#19

British police are less likely to kill you, but they are also even more likely that US police to get away with it when they do. Infinitely more likely, in fact, because I believe I am right in saying that no police officer has ever been convicted for a line-of-duty killing in the UK (and thousands of people have been killed by police). The last time it came close was 50 years ago, when two filths were convicted of assault after beating a black man to death for fun. The judge ordered the jury not to find them guilty of manslaughter.

Part of the reason we hear more of this from the US is that American police really are more violent and tyrannical (and carry guns, obviously). But part of it is that the UK has a much more widespread culture of deference to authority, which means that mainstream media report abuses less, and with a more uniform pro-police bias.

It is also possible that, because police killings in the US tend to involve guns, the details are harder to fudge. Like, it’s harder to pretend a bullet wound is the result of falling down stairs.


#20

Fucking War on Drugs. we must be coming up on the “Fifty Years of Abject Failure” anniversary. Though, with a budget of £51 Billion, I guess it is all gravy for someone, and certainly helps the Drug Cartels.