By Jim Kouri
Newly elected Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto announced on Monday his new security and public safety strategy, which “focuses on the transformation of law enforcement institutions and crime prevention.”
Pena Nieto took office on Dec. 1, 2012, in a tough campaign that candidates had to run while in the midst of economic turmoil and rampant crime, especially homicides committed by the bloodthirsty cartels.
“Not a week goes by without Mexican police or the military discovering yet another mass grave,” said Joseph Listron, a criminologist and crime scene investigator. “Mexico’s crime and violence are detrimental to any desire to become a prosperous nation.”
Pena Nieto promised that he will order 10,000-strong militarized police force known as the national gendarmerie to be created. The military would continue to patrol Mexico’s streets until the gendarmerie is ready to take over, but the Mexican people will soon see an end to soldiers in their neighborhoods.
In addition, Mexican Attorney General position will be elevated and its staff increased to handle national prosecutions, Pena Nieto told the Public Security National Council of Mexico.
The new president also promised that his government would invest $9.17 billion in 2013 for crime prevention programs.
“Pena Nieto’s new strategy is different from the one used by his predecessor Felipe Calderon, who relied on the military in a war with drug cartels,” according to U.S. law enforcement officers assigned to Mexico’s drug war.
“While Calderon’s strategy is seen as a monumental failure with more than 60,000 drug-related killings occurring during his six-year term, I’m not betting on this new president’s Obamanesque transformation of the Mexican law enforcement strategy,” said Iris Aquino, a former undercover narcotics officer.
In his first address to the nation as president, Mexico’s Enrique Pena Nieto said his government would “take inspiration from the past” to “transform Mexico into the power it should be.”
“Mexico is now ready to take off in the 21st century, we have the historic opportunity to transform Mexico into the power it should be,” said Pena Nieto in the capital city’s National Palace, shortly after taking the oath of office earlier in the day.