Cali Cartel Vs. Tijuana Cartel
Sample - 953 words essay topic, essay writing: Cali Cartel Vs. Tijuana Cartel
The drug trade is a very large and complex system. There are many different organizations involved at different levels. There are groups that operate only in growing and selling the product, and only groups that buy and distribute the drugs. In this essay I will
discuss the similarities and differences of two of the largest growers and sellers in the drug trade: The Cali Cartel of Columbia and the Tijuana Cartel of Mexico. The Cali Cartel is the largest, richest, and most complex producers and distributors of cocaine. The cartel concentrates almost entirely in cocaine. Over time they have developed an extremely large and sophisticated distribution system and have generated an extraordinary amount of wealth. Because of their financial stability, they are able to buy planes, ships and warehouses as well as bribe government officials and pay the top lawyers and strongest mercenary groups for protection.
The Tijuana Cartel, also known as the AFO, or Arellano-Felix Organization, runs out of Mexico and is known as one of the most violent drug organizations in the world. The group is headed by Benjamin Arellano-Felix and his brothers Ramon, Eduardo and Javier. Ramon Arellano-Felix is a frequent member of the FBI's Top 10 Most Wanted List. He is known as the most violent brother and is in charge of the group's security. This group's competitive edge is not in their distribution system or exorbitant riches but in their ruthless tactics
Because the group is conveniently located near the 2,000 mile border between the US and Mexico, they do not have to spend as much money or have as sophisticated distribution systems as The Cali Cartel does. This border consists largely of rugged terrain that is difficult to patrol. Mexican traffickers have mastered transportation methods over this border. What the Cali Cartel lacks in location for transportation, they make up in location for raw materials. The Cali Cartel gets the cocoa leaves they need to make cocaine for extremely cheap and then sell it exponentially higher prices. At this rate, they are able to afford expensive transportation methods.
The AFO makes up for this in diversity of product. While the Cali Cartel operates exclusively in cocaine, the AFO distributes heroin, marijuana and methamphetamines along with cocaine. Heroin is much more readily available for production in Mexico. The opium poppies that are used to create heroin are grown in Mexico and the AFO is able to produce heroin cheaply. Most of the marijuana used in the United States in grown in Mexico.
From the 1930's to the 1970's it is estimated that 95% of the marijuana in the United States originated in Mexico. In the 1970's, the Mexican government sprayed the majority of its marijuana fields with a herbicide. After this, Columbian distributors took control for a time, but Mexican producers regained control because the bulky product was difficult for Columbians to transport. Ever since, Mexicans have dominated the marijuana trade. However, more than product diversity, the AFO's biggest strength is in their violent, ruthless tactics. IN Tijuana, over 300 people were murdered in 1998 alone.
75% of these deaths have been linked to drug related activities. Also, from 1996 to 1999 the DEA recorded 141 threats against US law enforcement officials, their Mexican counterparts, or Mexican informants. Members of the AFO are notorious for not being afraid to confront law enforcement officers. Because of their tactics, they have managed to control much of the distribution in the Midwest and West United States. Distribution in the Eastern United States in controlled mostly by the Cali cartel.
Their sophisticated transportation methods make it easier for them to set up distribution centers in this area. The cartel has set up "cells" all over the US. These cells usually consist of no more than 10 employees and have no knowledge of the activities of other cells. Because of this, if one cell is caught, the others will not be in danger. The cartel has a very strict hierarchical system. The head of each cell reports to a regional director who is responsible for the overall management of several cells. The regional director reports directly to one of the top drug lords, based in Colombia.
This structure has worked very well and it is because of the cartels complex system that they have been so successful. However, these organizations would cease to exist if they didn't reside within the governments that they do. The Cali Cartels operations are made much easy because of warring paramilitary groups in Columbia. These groups protect the growers in their specific areas. If there were to be peace in Columbia and the two groups agree to a ceasefire, the growers would then be vulnerable to government intervention. In Mexico, the AFO thrives on the large number of corrupt Mexican officials.
The cartel makes it a very smart choice for a government official or law enforcer to help them. Not only are they bribed, but they are also threatened with violence. Everyone in Mexico knows from the history of this group that they mean business and any threat is very legitimate. Because of the large amount of corruption in the Mexican government, the Tijuana cartel flourishes. Both of these cartels are custom made for the area they are located in. If the systems were to switch geographic locations, they would not be nearly as successful. Over the years, the groups have molded to form the perfect fit for a drug cartel to operate in their specific area. As things change, the group changes, it is because of their flexible nature that they have lasted so long.
Because of all of these factors, the war on drugs has proven to be an extremely difficult one to win. Information gathered from the DEA website at http://www. usdoj. gov/dea.
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