MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
This summer, Truthout concluded a 10-installment series called Truthout on the Border. It is a paradigm shifting analysis of the squalid underside of the so-called US war on drugs in Mexico and Latin America.
Tens of thousands have died in Mexico (recent estimates, which will be discussed in a forthcoming Truthout article, indicate that the homicide total under the six year rule of Felipe Calderon may reach 120,000) and in other Latin American nations. As far as stopping drug flow goes, the war on drugs in Latin America is a dismal failure.
But what perhaps are the real goals of the war on drugs -- US militarization south of the border and opening markets for global corporations under free trade agreements -- have been achieved. The flow of illegal narcotics continues unabated into the United States as the price of the drugs fall and the purity improves. Meanwhile, there is virtually no large scale domestic effort to decrease consumption in the United States, except for incarcerating minorities for non-violent drug offenses at record rates.
Recently, Mark Karlin, editor of BuzzFlash at Truthout and author of the Truthout on the Border series, talked with Paul Jay of the Real News about what are the real US intentions behind the Mexican and Latin American (DEA agents and marines are in Guatemala, for example) alleged war on drugs. Since that taping, the death toll in Mexico alone during the Calderon years (which will end on November 30, 2012) has, as noted earlier, been revised dramatically upwards.