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In October 2021, the United States and Mexico put an end to the Mérida Initiative—a thirteen-year, $3 billion security assistance package central to a new “war on drugs.” Despite years of weapons sales, military training, and intelligence sharing, the initiative failed to reduce crime and drug trafficking. Instead, violence and homicides increased throughout Mexico. Why? Our guests this week, Mexican movie star Diego Luna and scholar Ernesto López Portillo, argue America’s and Mexico’s militarized approach to security is to blame.
Recently back from Mexico where she explores the consequences of the Mérida Initiative, Eurasia Group Foundation senior researcher and producer Caroline Gray speaks with Diego and Ernesto about the US-Mexico drug war, the accountability problems that plague both countries, and what non-military solutions to insecurity in Mexico might look like.