The United States is currently engaged in its own war on drugs. As a country that shares frontier land containing thousands miles of unsecured border, illegal immigration and the smuggling of illegal drugs and arms into and out of the US has been a concern for decades. The biggest ongoing war is Americas War on Drugs, particularly the trafficking operations of cartels along US borders. In 2007 the Gulf, Sinaloa and Juarez cartels were considered the top three by the US Congressional Research Service. Over the last 15 years, Mexican drug cartels have smuggled millions of dollars’ worth of drugs and weapons across American boarders. While many smaller cartels and drug gangs have been taken out of commission the Sinaloa cartel has thrived. Its leader, 54 year old Joaquin Guzman-Loera also known as “El Chapo or Shorty,” was recognized in 2011 as #55 in Forbes Magazine’s most powerful people, with a net worth of $1 Billion. El Chapo is noted as having “…more power than Pablo Escobar did during his 1980s heyday.”
Dozens of interviews with current and former law enforcement agents, organized crime experts, elected representatives, and victims of violence suggest that the Sinaloans depend on bribes to top government officials to help their leader, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, elude capture, expand his empire and keep his operatives out of jail.
As a family of agricultural farmers in the 1980s Sinaloans shipped their poppy yield to the United States along the Pacific Railroad, a route previously used to transport agricultural goods
“Understanding the adversaries thought process is half the battle in any type of warfare. The opportunity to secure ourselves against defeat lies in our own hands, but the opportunity of defeating the enemy is provided by the enemy himself.” -Sun Tzu
Knowing what these cartels need in order to operate and crushing it is what the Drug War has needed to succeed.
A part of bringing the issue of drug and human trafficking to an end is understanding how these cartels are benefiting from them. The act of smuggling humans across the boarders at high prices only to murder them and place them in mass graves shows that as long as there is a need to cross American boarders illegally, drug cartels will continuously use that to exploit other human beings. When weapons that are sold in America are recovered across US boarders and are being used to murder US and Mexican intelligence agents and law enforcement officials this is considered a failure of epic proportions. More than 70% of 29,284 firearms submitted to the U.S. Department of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for tracing by the Mexican government during 2009 and 2010 originated in the United States. All of these issues are factors in the drug trade.
A report produced in July 2011 indicates there have been long standing suspicions that the government is focusing on pursuing members of other drug-trafficking organizations at the expense of targeting the Sinaloa Cartel. An investigation by the US radio station NPR in 2010found that the number of Sinaloa members captured is disproportionately low, relative to those arrested from other criminal groups.
The Sinaloa Cartel in Mexico has risen to the top of the drug trade since the early 1980s and with the possible assistance from the US there seems to be a possible explanation of why they have survived for so long. The latest developments in a Chicago trial reveal that defendant Mr. Zambada, 36 years old, is no ordinary accuser: He is the son of Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, the co-head of the Sinaloa cartel alongside Mexico’s most famous trafficker, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán.
As the number of Mexican drug cartels has decreased over time, the power of the remaining ones has increased. The increase in the power of the remaining cartels creates deadly competition for territory and supply routes. The rise of the Sinaloa cartel is significant amidst the accusations of helping US law enforcement officials. Ironically what goes up must come down. It is possible that this revelation brought forth in Zambada’s trial may mark the beginning of the end of the Sinaloa Cartel.