Saturday, June 7, 2008

Yanqui arrogance

Few slights irk Mexican politicians so much as when Washington treats Mexico like a backward country in need of outside guidance, and that anger raged full throttle this week as top Mexican officials threatened to walk away from a major United States aid package to help defeat drug traffickers.

The US is good at lecturing others on how to comport themselves properly. Witness Bush lecturing the world about freedom and democracy, the same democracy that gave Hamas the chance to be elected to govern.

A chorus of similar protests went up this week from Mexican lawmakers, prosecutors and law enforcement officials, who called the bills insulting and reeking of Yankee arrogance. Some pointed out the United States had no room to talk, given the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. Others said Mexico had not asked for unilateral aid from America, but a partnership in fighting crime.

Some politicians complained that drug consumption in the United States, along with the sale of arms to Mexican drug dealers by American arms merchants, were driving the violence here. “The only thing we need is for them to stop selling arms to narcotics traffickers,” said Javier González Garza, the leader of the left-wing opposition party in the Chamber of Deputies.

Some of those millions should be used to decrease demand for drugs, in inner cities and in suburbs, on Wall Street and on Main Street. (Ach, the cliches!)

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