Mexico: The Feds ride out / The Economist

Mexico gets a new police force. It needs a new policing strategy.

SET beside a lake two hours’ drive from Mexico City, Valle de Bravo brands itself a Pueblo Mágico (“Magical Town”). Normally it is a place where the capital’s wealthy residents come to sail, jet ski and show off their SUVs. Now its cobbled streets look as if they had been cursed. It is patrolled by soldiers, marines and federal police bristling with machineguns. Holidaymakers stay away.

Everyone is responding to a spate of kidnappings in the town and the surrounding pine-covered mountains that serves as a reminder of how vulnerable parts of Mexico remain to violent crime—even the playgrounds of the rich. That is an impression President Enrique Peña Nieto has spent more than 18 months trying to dispel in his drive to reform the economy and attract foreign investment. On the rare occasions when he discusses crime, he argues that his security strategy is making the country safer. SEE MORE…

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