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November 21, 2010

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I hate Perry as much as the next left-thinking American, but since Perry makes it clear he's only thinking bout it if the Mexican government invites America in, is this really an invasion?

In fact, Mexico is deploying troops to the very regions Perry's discussing.

"The Mexican government announced Wednesday it is ordering a significant boost in military troops and federal police in the northeastern border state of Tamaulipas and neighboring Nuevo Leon, home to Monterrey."
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/27/monterrey-mexicos-wealthi_n_788745.html

Are they making a mistake doing so?

You're strangely contrarian at times, Scott! I like that. My impression is that Perry added the “only with their permission” as an afterthought, being smart enough to realize that he had just said something that could cause a diplomatic incident and that making a forced entry into Mexico was a stupid idea. Of course, even with Mexican permission, sending the U.S. military into the country would be unwise at best.

This post gives some indication about my thoughts about the wisdom of using the military to fight organized crime. Without a detailed operational plan, excellent intelligence, and scrupulous attention to human rights --- in other words, without turning them into a police force --- troops are pretty damn close to useless, as Ciudad Juarez has discovered.

I do think that allowing American federal police to operate in Mexico, outsourcing the operation of Mexican jails to American public authorities, and inserting U.S. officials into the Mexican chain of command might all be helpful. But such actions are also politically impossible, and not just from the Mexican side. After all, since the U.S. faces little threat from the criminality south of the border, it would be hard to sell American voters on the need for greater involvement.

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