trump

Cartels in the Crosshairs: Potential Trump Victory Signals Major Reckoning

EDITOR'S NOTES

As the fentanyl crisis continues to ravage the U.S., killing more Americans every six months than the Vietnam War, the debate over how to tackle drug cartels intensifies. With former President Trump considering a return to power, his proposed strategy includes deploying Special Forces to target cartel leaders directly and sanctioning Mexican banks laundering cartel cash. This aggressive approach, likened to tactics used against Pablo Escobar, aims to dismantle the powerful cartels that thrive under the current administration’s policies. However, such moves risk violent retaliation, endangering both Americans abroad and at home.

Every six months, the US drug death catastrophe eclipses the Vietnam War. The vast majority of deaths are derived from fentanyl-laced narcotics, which come from Mexico (and chemicals sourced initially from China), via open southern borders pushed by radical leftists in the White House. More recently, the House Select Committee on China revealed that the Chinese Communist Party used tax rebates to subsidize the manufacturing and exporting of fentanyl chemicals abroad.  

About a year and a half ago, the conservative think tank Center for Renewing America penned a note titled “It’s time to wage war on transnational drug cartels.” In recent weeks, a Rolling Stone report said former President Trump is seriously considering deploying America’s Special Forces operators to combat cartel leaders if he wins in November.

The conversations are growing louder that if Trump clinches victory in November, the drug cartels behind the fentanyl overdose crisis are in for a reckoning. The first strike? It is likely the US Treasury Department is zeroing in on Mexican banks that launder cartel cash. Today’s sanctioning of cartel members has yet to crush these drug empires. 

As David Asher, a senior fellow at Hudson Institute and former senior advisor to the State Department on China, recently described:

“There needs to be a top-down targeting approach against the Mexican cartels and their Chinese partners with military force being part of the strategy ala Pablo Escobar. 

“As we approach 100,000 American deaths yearly from fentanyl, we must truly go to war against drug traffickers and designate them as the terrorists that they are. 

“The Treasury Department should sanction and DOJ indict Mexican banks holding cartel cash — it’s hard to believe that a major Mexican bank has never been taken down before. No more “too big to fail, too big to jail.””

If Trump wins, there’s an increasing likelihood that the era of defense against cartels will be over, and counter-offenses will begin. Strike Mexican banks with sanctions, then as the Rolling Stone report laid out, Use Tier 1 operators to take out cartel leaders surgically. 

The problem with this offensive move is spillovers. This would likely include cartel members targeting US tourists and expatriates across Mexico. Then, cartel leaders could activate sleeper cells in major US cities and spark chaos. 

A new cartel activity map of Mexico, published by the research firm Bismarck Analysis, shows that “cartels have regional strongholds where they originate, but only the Sinaloa Cartel and the CJNG have regular national reach.” 

Biden’s sanctioning of cartel members and affiliated companies has proven ineffective so far as open borders still permit the flow of fentanyl across the southern border to American neighborhoods. The weak, leftist administration is doing very little while out-of-control drug trafficking in the Western Hemisphere, driven by China and Mexican cartels, is killing a record number of Americans. 

This article originally appeared on Zero Hedge

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