“Redlogarythm” for BorderlandBeat

Disclaimer: the following article reflects just my personal opinion about a topic, the use of counterinsurgency and intelligence, that is highly subjected to different schools of though. Thus, readers shouldn´t try to refute undisputable truth but extract their own conclusions

A shot from the film The Battle of Algiers (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966) The use of counterinsurgency taken to the celluloid

current conflict cannot be labelled but as an armed conflict. Nevertheless it´s not a conflict fought in a formal way. Contrary to what happens in most armed conflicts, amid
the Mexican tragedy we can´t see two differentiated sides but rather a very
unstable network of armed actors that are constantly fighting between
themselves as well as forging weak alliances of convenience that last just moths
or a few years.

special characteristic of the Mexican conflict is the purpose or existential
meaning of most of the armed criminal groups. While the Mexican State can act in
the name of the classical monopoly of violence and with the scope of pacifying
the country and defeating criminality, organized crime groups confronting the
Federal Government and waging war one against the other do not conduct their
violent activities for seeking some kind of political/social cause but mere
profit. And although it´s true that certain criminal groups such as the original
Familia Michoacana and the Knight Templars Cartel liked to act under the false
assumptions of loosely social purposes, portraying themselves as some kind of popular
the truth is that these profiles where nothing more than mere alibis
used for disguising their criminal actions.

Thus, we can
conclude that the only objective that organized crime groups in Mexico seek
when conducting their violent and non-violent actions is the obtention of
profit. This profit can represent different assets such as money (when selling
a ton of cocaine to US retailers), territory (when a group invades another´s
area such as is happening right now in the State of Guanajuato with the turf
between the CJNG and the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel), sources of revenue (when a
group targets a certain business owned by another entity such as oil-theft,
drug retail distribution, etc)…

characteristic of the Mexican conflict is the use of violence by organized
crime against the State. Contrary to the violence seen in countries such as
Colombia or Perú, where the actions of armed groups against the State had the
simple objective of challenging the Government´s monopoly of force presenting
them as legitimate sources of political power, in Mexico violence against the
State is reserved for occasions in which shows of strength must be showed in
order to demonstrate that a certain group is powerful enough to challenge and
beat the official Government. And because Mexican organized crime groups cannot
act openly against the State fighting the SEDENA, SEMAR or different law
enforcement corporations in open field, acting as formal armies, they must resort
to insurgency tactics.

At the left, members of the Colombian Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia-Ejército Popular (FARC-EP) guerrillas crossing a river. A the right, members of one of the factions of the Sinaloa Federation crossing a river. The only difference between both groups is the insignias in the berets.

An example
of this would be the attack against Mexico City´s Secretary of Public Security,
Oma García Harfuch, when he was ambushed in the heart of Lomas de Chapultepec
on June 26th 2020 by a squad of CJNG enforcers using high caliber
weapons. Why did CJNG target one of Mexico highest public security strategists?
Obviously to spread a message: the tackling of CJNG´s operations in the States
of Jalisco, Michoacán and Colima has its consequences. 

Aftermath of the 2020 ambush against Mexico City´s Public Security Secretary Omar García Harfuch. The event was interpreted as a direct message from CJNG to the Federal Government

Very high profile attacks
have traditionally been used by organized crime to perform indirect statements
aimed at national Governments: the killing of Colombian Justice Minister
Rodrigo Lara Bonilla in 1984 as a protest against extradition, the murdering of
Pio La Torre by Cosa Nostra in 1982 was a consequence of passing the Rognoni-La
Torre law making a crime to be a Mafia associate, the murder of Monsignor
Gerardi in Guatemala City in 1998 was a message issued by Guatemalan criminal
structures known as CIACS for the publishing of the Nunca Más Truth Commission
Report, etc.

The case of
Mexico isn´t different. When attacking a high-profile Government official or
answering at a Federal-led offensive such as the Culiacanazo organized crime tries
at the same time to defend itself from what it sees as attacks against its
hegemony and issue a message for all to hear.

The body of Rodolfo Torre Cantú lays in the pavement of the road of Ciudad Victoria-Matamoros. The PRI Candidate for the State of Tamaulipas was killed on June 2010 by elements of the Gulf Cartel in what was interpreted as a message issued to the PRI leadership
Defining insurgency and counterinsurgency:

It´s not
easy defining insurgency since it has been performed almost since the birth of
modern cultures in multiple ways by thousands of actors. A good approach would
be the definition used by R. Scott Moore when he states that an insurgency is
a protracted violent conflict in which one or more groups seek to overthrow or
fundamentally change the political or social order in a state or region through
the use of sustained violence, subversion, social disruption, and political
The paradox of applying this definition to the Mexican panorama is
that Mexican criminal organizations do not seek to overthrow the political
institutions but to co-opt them, making them their accomplices in the unlawful
obtention of criminal rents.

This has
differentiated the Mexican conflict from other similar tragedies such as the
conflict between Colombian criminal organizations and the local Government
during the 80s and 90s. During those years the Medellin Cartel and its
affiliates chose to conduct selective terrorist actions such as the placement
of car bombs or the murder of significant State representatives in order to
stress its dominion over the whole country and modify the set of laws that
enabled the extradition of its top leaders to US jails. In contrast, Mexican
criminal groups have confronted the State forces by using a whole set of
tactics and methods that cannot categorized but as insurgency actions. The
carefully planned ambushes against SEMAR convoys in the hills of Michoacan, the
training courses being taught at ranches in Nuevo Leon or Jalisco, the public
relations campaigns waged by powerful cartels through the deployment of narco
mantas and the distribution of toys among childres, etc. These events indicate
that Mexican powerful organized criminal groups have adopted a purely insurgent
strategy for expanding their influence and for their daily activity, a model
radically different to the one used until the beginning of the XXIst century
when Mexican criminal organizations acted violently but in a much more
selective way.  Thus, we could easily
label Mexican cartels as entities conducting a very violent kind of criminal

singularity of the Mexican 
conflict is that contrary to most insurgencies
Mexican criminal groups are not interested in fighting the State continuously
but rather are constantly fighting among them. This means that a certain group
which fights using tactics inherent to insurgency is going to fight another
group which uses the same tactics. This leads to violent and direct clashes
which can resemble sometimes real combats like those happening in full scale
conflicts (such as the case of several African or Middle East countries)
Nevertheless at the end of the day most of the clashes between Mexican criminal
groups happen in the form of ambushes or sneak attacks performed selectively
(machine gun attacks against drug retail businesses, bars, restaurants, car
repair shops, massacres conducted in rural communities at night, etc) This
leads us to the main assumption of this article: Mexican criminal organizations,
when confronting rival groups must asses the conflict in a way that enables them
to combat and defeat an irregular enemy. Thus, counterinsurgency becomes the
most viable option since close combat can be most of the times
counterproductive, noisy, and highly costly.

    Again, counterinsurgency
as the method used for combatting an insurgency (either rural or urban) has
been used since the origins of the great civilizations and cannot be easily
defined. And again the definition of R. Scott Moore is paradigmatic: counterinsurgency
is an integrated set of political, economic, social, and security measures
intended to end and prevent the recurrence of armed violence, create and
maintain stable political, economic, and social structures, and resolve the
underlying causes of an insurgency in order to establish and sustain the
conditions necessary for lasting stability

conflicts don´t resemble the form old wars used to take. Large armies fighting
in extremely vast fronts are nothing more than images and texts reflected in
history books. Modern conflicts are waged most of the times between formal and
official armies and insurgent groups that use mostly religious or political
goals as a legitimate cause for which resort to armed violence. Thus, conflicts
such as those happening in Sudan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria or Burma have
modelled the way conflicts are currently being fought. In other words, counterinsurgency
has become a crucial discipline in military academies. It´s an extraordinarily
complex subject which is in constant evolution so my intention is not to make a
deep analysis of the matter but just to identify and analyze those aspects of counterinsurgency
that appear to be used in the Mexican conflict.

A basic
characteristic of counterinsurgency tactics is its division between strictly
military operations and more subtle ways of action which include the gathering
of intelligence, psychological warfare or social/economic actions undertaken
for influencing the social basis on which insurgency finds its supporters.

it´s not easy to apply a strictly militaristic strategy such as counterinsurgency
to the Mexican landscape, a country which is not fighting an officially
declared war, it should be noted that Mexico´s case is very interesting because
of the level of intelligence data managed by all the actors involved in the
infighting. Thus, intelligence becomes the main element around which Criminal
is applied. In my opinion this can be explained by the
way criminal organizations do operate in Mexico.

A criminal
organization, like any strictly political/religious insurgent group, must
manage its affairs in the utmost secrecy. The identities of its membership,
sources of supplies, infrastructure or political contacts must remain unknown
for everyone since anonymity is the only way for grating the group´s survival.
Thus, the obtention of that information is a priority for the organization´s
rivals since that´s the only way they´ll be able to defeat it. For example, if
the local CJNG cells located in the State of Guanajuato are able to discover CSRL´s
financial operators in Celaya they would be able to eliminate them creating a
revenue shortage for the surrounding CSRL´s operatives. Similarly, if a Los
Aztecas cell is able to identify a business in Ciudad Juarez used as a meth
retail distribution center by a rival organization, attacking the place and
killing the people found in the spot would be a way for denying future clients
to their rivals, who wouldn´t be able to sell meth locally due to the death
threats against their buyers. The examples of intelligence data collected
through counterinsurgency tactics and being used for attacking and damaging
rival criminal organizations are almost endless and in my opinion are the cause
for most of the daily violence that is destroying Mexico.

Thus, we can
say that besides the pure militaristic actions undertaken by criminal groups in
Mexico, the gathering of intelligence could easily be the most useful counterinsurgency
tool used by organized crime. How does counterinsurgency intelligence work? How
is it collected, analyzed, and used? Again, the answers are multiple and may
vary depending on who we ask to, but an analysis of the classic American counterinsurgency
manual will give us a great insight.

The pyramidal structure of Mexican criminal organizations:

In my
opinion Mexican criminal networks are compartmentalized and pyramidal in their
structure. Certainly, there are organizations resembling a more horizontal
structure, but at the end of the day most Mexican criminal groups present quite
similar structures: on the top we have one, two, or several leaders. These top
bosses designate several lieutenants, their most trusted men, who oversee the creation
of regional subsidiaries and the designation of regional leaders. These
regional leaders create local criminal cells across all their area composed by
trusted men being used as the organization´s violent spearhead. These local
enforcement cells might recruit local petty criminals or street gangs as well
as law abiding citizens for using them as halcones (watchers),
informants, drug distributors, etc. Of course, we can enlarge this structural
model by adding financial operators, corrupt law enforcement, affiliated
politicians, etc. But in the end, this corpus has a pyramidal shape
headed at the top by a few bunch of very powerful individuals and composed at
the bottom by innumerable hundreds (sometimes thousands) of negligible and
expendable employees.


Fractional approximation to what a Mexican medium-size criminal organization seems like. Note the natural pyramidal shape

If we want
to tackle such an organization we cannot do so by attacking any person who
enters in our radar as member of such entity because one of the characteristics
of pyramidal organizations is the easiness with which a member is substituted
without causing too much harm to the whole structure. Neither can we attack powerful
members (local or regional leaders) because most of the times their identities
are unknown even by their own associates. For example, we might know that a
certain plaza has a boss but we ignore who this person is and so do the people
buying meth or cocaine in the streets (they might know that they´re working for
this or that organization, but do ignore who are the men directing it or know
them just by an uncertain alias or nickname)

Thus, if we
want to conduct a useful complete identification of the individuals managing a
certain criminal group (either at a local, regional, or national level) we must
start by identifying those at the bottom of the pyramid.

What we
would have at our favor is that individuals at the bottom of the pyramid don´t
act alone. They usually belong to a small cell or group of people directed by a
leader/superior individual, conducting daily duties for the organization:
street surveillance, selling drugs in a certain street/neighborhood, collecting
extortion quotas, etc. If one of these individuals is captured, a properly
performed interrogation session could provide the names of the people who
he/she knows inside the street cell, including its leader. If the street leader
is captured, he will reveal the identities of the people he gives money to, or
the names of the people who give him instructions. We then center on capturing
the members of this second layer of the group who will lead us to other people which
will lead us to an even higher level. This process can be repeated several
times, each time making the future objectives bigger in numbers and importance,
until reaching a certain point at which we might be able to identify or capture
a certain leader of the whole structure.

Of course,
the obtention of information from captured rivals can be tricky and the use of
physical force/pain or the threat of provoking them is a very useful tool. In
other words, the use of torture is essential in most of the cases for the
obtention of sensible information. In Mexico torture has been common since the
times of the Aztecs (as in much of the world we must say) but it´s true that criminal
organizations have carried it to another level by performing incredibly
gruesome and savage practices against their captives. The presence of bruises,
abrasions, skinning or amputated limbs in most of the cadavers that are found
executed or in mass graves might reflect not the practice of brutal torture
indiscriminately but the fact that most disappeared in Mexico, after being
kidnapped, are taken to certain locations (safe houses, bodegas or abandoned
facilities) where formal interrogations through the use of terrible torture are
conducted in order to obtain information from the victims.

Members of CJNG´s Grupo Élite interrogating two alleged members of Guerreros Unidos working of Guerreros Unidos in the municipality of Silao, Guanajuato, June 2019. The use of extensive interrogation tactics to obtain information from rival prisoners is widespread

bottom-assessment of a pyramidal organization was used extensively for the
first time during the Algerian Independence war. During the 1950´s the nationalist
FLN stablished several cells in the city of Algiers that started conducting
widespread terrorist actions against policemen, public officials and French
citizens. Thus, several Parachute divisions were deployed and started tackling
the FLN urban structure following the same path. They first targeted the bottom
of the pyramid, identifying street guerrilla collaborators, the people who
smuggled weapons into the Kasbah or the individuals who could know something
about the whereabouts of a certain insurgent. The brutal interrogation tactics
used by the French parachutists enabled them to make a path through the FLN
pyramidal structure destroying most of its urban infrastructure and cells and
by the end of the Algerian War of Independence (that the FLN won in the
countryside, not in the urban scenario) ended up with nearly 90% of the FLN´s
urban cadres erased from the theatre of operations. The success of this counterinsurgency
method was so great that it was used exactly in the same brutal and efficient way
by the Argentinean and Guatemalan secret services during the 60s, 70s and 80s
for destroying the local insurgent groups operating in urban areas. In both
cases the insurgents were totally wiped out.

For a better
understanding of this kind of counterinsurgency pyramidal method a review of the
Italian-Algerian 1966 film The Battle of Algiers by Gillo Pontecorvo,
which depicts extremely well how the pyramidal method was used by French paratroopers,
is strongly recommended.

Until now we
have analyzed the general framework of a generic method (the pyramid
assessment) which can be used for attacking a rival group amid a direct
confrontation. Nevertheless, this is not the only counterinsurgency tactic that
might be used for tackling a rival criminal organization. Thus, it´s necessary
to venture alternative counterinsurgency methods used by Mexican organized
crime groups.

The three-steppes intelligence approach: 

suppose that a criminal organization decides to invade the territory of a rival
group. This decision implies that the aggressor is going to enter into a
possibly unknown territory on which its rival has been stablished for a while,
developing support networks, businesses, and affiliates all across the area.
For example, although it had a local presence at least since 2013, in 2017 the Cartel
de Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG) started an aggressive offensive against the
local criminal cells acting in the State of Guanajuato. This offensive quickly
escalated into a full penetration of CJNG´s units into the territory which by
the time had developed its own local organization, the Santa Rosa de Lima
Cartel lead by Jose Antonio Yepez Ortiz aka El Marro. In the last six
years the CJNG has advanced into Guanajuato coopting territories and businesses
previously owned by Marro´s organization. This has been possible only
through the development of a sophisticated intelligence network.

We could
divide the gathering of intelligence by an invasive organization into three
phases of study: Basic, Estimative and Operational.

First, when
arriving at a new location, the foreign organization might want to conduct a basic
estimation of the local situation. Although this phase is optional since much
of the time conflicts between Mexican criminal groups don´t happen abruptly and
might be caused by events largely prolonged in time it´s a fact that criminal
groups send outpost in the form of suburban columns or even travelling in incognito
mode through commercial bus lines. Thus, this basic phase implies the gathering
of general and crucial data such as main plazas, road networks, current state
of affairs, main previous events, location of the most populated and anarchic
areas where the rival organization might concentrate resources, etc. It can be
conducted even before deploying troops. Google maps and other satellite GPS locators,
for example, offer an excellent platform for conducting basic estimations about
roads, towns and streets.

The second phase
is called estimative and is conducted once the rival has been fully targeted.
It implies an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the rival forces to
start determining what the combat strategy will be. Thus, following our
Guanajuato example we can conclude that when arriving at the State CJNG´s cells
could have determine that CSRL´s main weakness was its dependency on oil-theft
activities since they didn´t have the necessary contacts/infrastructure for
conducting major drug smuggling activities. Also, they could have recalled that
one of El Marro´s main advantages was the development of a deep and
reliable network of supporters who would give him shelter and protection. Thus,
a quick estimative analysis of the available data could have forced CJNG cells
in Guanajuato to tackle key individuals in charge of extracting oil from Pemex
pipelines and laundering El Marro´s money killing them through selective
hits using mobile units like the so-called Grupo Elite (which might be several
units acting under the same name)

The third
step in the gathering of intelligence is called operational strategy. Once a
certain course of action has been selected it´s time to take direct actions
against specific individuals who have already been identified. Thus, the operational
phase is the ultimate goal of a counterinsurgency intelligence campaign and can
be divided into four different types of actions/measures: preventive, reactive,
aggressive and remedial.

Types of operation actions:

    Preventive actions are undertaken
to avoid future rival organizations activities in the area dominated by the
group. For example, the recruitment of unemployed or young crooks by a criminal
cell, providing them with a few pesos and a mobile phone is the way used for
the creation of networks of halcones (watchers) A good surveillance
network is one of the ways by which local groups can avoid foreign invasions by
detecting and reporting almost instantly strangers around the area.

actions are a direct consequence of rival attacks on controlled areas. For
example, if a group managing the theft of hydrocarbons in a certain area of
Guanajuato detects rival clandestine intakes in the area, they might ambush the
assailants for avoiding further rival activities.

actions are specially aimed at the core of the rival organization. In other
words, the purpose of aggressive actions is the decapitation of the rival
organization leadership as well as the destruction of the rival´s morale. These
are specific operations that require of great planning and that are designed
for causing a great commotion in rival ranks. For example, on January 2020 a
CJNG enforcement cell attacked a wedding ceremony at the town of Celaya in
Guanajuato. During the gunfight the bride and the groom were both killed. A few
hours later a CJNG text was published claiming that the objective had been Marro
himself, which managed to escape letting his own sister (the bride) in the
hands of the enforcers. This action wasn´t very damaging in terms of personnel
for the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel and it is still unknown if the bride was Marro´s
sister, but if it is so the impact of such an action against El Marro´s
family core has been enormous. Attacking the relatives of Guanajuato´s private
lord in his own stronghold would mean that the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel cannot
even protect his own top members from CJNG´s retaliation.

example of aggresive action, although not militaristic, would be the placing of
narcomantas in strategic locations as well as the diffusion of a
statement recorded on video, which are called narcocomunicados. Most of
the times narcomantas are designed carefully, reflecting names, photos
and data stressed in vivid colors. In most occasions the narcomantas or narcocomunicados
are used as warning labels, indicating that the territory/area belongs to a
certain group (so they may be classified as preventive rather than aggressive
actions) But sometimes they are used for explaining the setting of a rivals´
corruption network among a local law enforcement group. On other occasions, for
example, the narcomanta/narcocomunicado tries to stress who is
the boss of a local unit and his lieutenants. The information being provided
through these means is partial and can be false, but its purpose is to
demonstrate that the issuer knows who their rivals are and how are they
organized. It´s a clear sign of weakness that a criminal group cannot avoid
rival penetration by keeping its structure anonymous. Thus, a narcomanta/narcocomunicado
can be very effective causing a decrease in the rival´s morale, just like
Psy-Ops do in real military scenarios (For a better understaing of the use of narcomantas in the context of the Guanajuato case I highly recommend the Small Wars Journal article Why tire repair workshops are the target of a wave of violence in Guanajuato)

Ultimately, remedial
actions are aimed at changing the environment and conditions which cause the
rival organization to take roots in a certain area. These remedial actions are
very popular in the military counterinsurgency scenario and imply the use of social
. For example, the US army personnel deployed in Afghanistan used organize
gatherings with local elder councils or Jirgas when conducting
operations in certain locations. They gathered the leaders of a town, interview
them, and sometimes provide them with pamphlets, food, technology such as
radios or mobile phones and medical supplies. It´s difficult to allocate these remedial
actions in the context of Mexican organized crime because Mexican criminal
groups do not seek any kind of social welfare. But what they do seek is social
support. Thus, complicity, silence and impunity can be obtained by criminal
groups through the use of social campaigns

 In my opinion the best real example of remedial
actions in the context of Mexico´s drug war would be the distribution of
pantries which has become extremely popular due to the current Covid 19
situation. For example, during the first weeks of confinement we could see
videos from several drug trafficking groups such as the CJNG, factions of the
CDG or the Nueva Familia Michoacana delivering hundreds of bags filled with
basic goods to dozens of people from poor urban and rural areas. When
distributing the pantries, the masked men stressed very clearly who they were
and why were they providing the people with basic goods: for the seek of social

A real life example of counterinsurgency intelligence applied to the Mexican                  scenario:

On the 23rd
September 2019, a video appeared on social media. It depicted 26 heavily armed
men wearing balaclavas and dark clothes. A hard and metallic voice could be heard
behind the camera stating that they were people belonging to an individual
identified as Comandante R10 who had already arrived to the State of
Mexico and were going to initiate a social cleansing operation by killing
extortionists, thieves kidnappers and the public officials supporting them. The
voice in a very rude and clear tone goes on identifying five zones of the State
of Mexico and designating the individuals in charge of the kidnapping, robbing
and extortion rings operating in the areas. The translations of the narcocomunicado
would be similar to this:

This message is for the
people from the State of Mexico. We are Comandante R10´s people. We come here
for cleaning the State of kidnappers, extortionists, thieves and the people
from the Government who support them. We´ll start with Nicolas Romero Zone with
the faggot of David, the Reyes Roa, El Mirra´s people, El Toche and the

Atizapan Zone: with the
faggot of Fernando, El Pelas, el 20, Kevin and Trompas

Tlane (Tlalnepantla) Zone:
la Vibora, el Chopped, and the Serranos from Tenayo.

Frente Nacional
Zone: Javier, el Ciro, Hector el Pollo, Ivan el Terrible, el Gordo, el Pato and
the faggot of Omar.

Tutitlan Zone:
el Araña and Mario.

Tultepec Zone: el
Licenciado and the fucking kidnapper of Pancho.


I´m Comandante R10 and
I´m gonna screw you all´´


What does
this statement reveal? We still don´t know who Comandante R10 is. There are
rumors about him being a member of the CJNG or the Nueva Familia Michoacana,
but the truth is that he didn´t identified himself as member of a certain
organization. The State of Mexico is a highly populated urban area where the
main illicit businesses are kidnappings, armed robbery, extortion and retail
drug distribution. Whoever Comandante R10 is he states that he has
arrived to the State and has already identified the main criminal cells
operating in the territory. This indicates that Comandante R10 and his people
had already conducted some sort of intelligence gathering before confronting
their rivals. In fact, the information is provided in a very analytical way:
first the Zone and then the names and nicknames of the people managing illicit
businesses there. 

Map of the State of Mexico. In red, the area affected by R10´s operational threath

Map of R10´s operational area with the rival criminal leaders and their zones of influence

The way the data is provided might suggest that the editing
organization might have obtained intelligence information from law enforcement
who at the end of the day spend 24 hours a day conducting surveillance and
interrogatories and know better than anyone how the general panorama in a
certain area is.

In fact, the
flow of intelligence data between Mexican law enforcement (including the SEDENA
and the SEMAR) has been a great problem and is behind the greatest failures and
scandals of the conflict (remember the Garcia Luna case. Mexico´s top police
officer busted for providing Sinaloa and the Beltran Leyvas with classified

It´s true
that the people Comandante R10 threats to attack are mostly common thugs who
run kidnapping and robbing operations in urban areas, not highly capacitated
members of other big rival organizations. But still I think it´s worth noting
how an enforcement cell has been able to gather and expose intelligence data
with the intention intimidating its rivals and showing itself as a capable and
powerful group.

We should ask ourselves
how Mexican criminal organizations gather, manage and use intelligence through counterinsurgency
tactics in their daily operations. It´s hard to believe that they use counterinsurgency
tactics in the rationalized way being explained here. This text is just theory,
but it seems realistic to assume that criminal cells do spend a lot of time
gathering info and intelligence before acting in a certain way.

It would be
interesting also to analyze how and when counterinsurgency tactics started
being used by Mexican criminal organizations. Of course, it´s obvious that
early criminal organizations such as the Guadalajara cartel, or the
organizations of the 1990s did manage counterinsurgency and intelligence
tactics, but not with the same degree of capacity and success. I think that the
recruitment of professional military personnel during the late 90s and early
2000s is the reason behind the professionalization of Mexican organized
crime, which adopted the means and methods used by their new employees. For
example, we all know that the GAFES were specialized at counterinsurgency and
in fact they were used for crushing the Zapatista uprising in 1994. The
incorporation of Guatemalan, Colombian and Central American enforcers with military
records might also have had something to do with it, but I think that´s

It would be
interesting to ask ourselves if a good and deep analysis about counterinsurgency
tactics being used by Mexican organized crime would help to prevent part of the
violence since it would be easier to identify where and when a criminal group
is going to hit next time. Who knows, maybe counterinsurgency is the future of
the battle against Mexican cartels.