Tonight's U.S. presidential debate will focus on foreign policy with likely topics including political instability in the MIddle East and the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. It remains to be seen if any discussion will be given to issues relating to Latin America and the Caribbean such as Mexico's offensive against drug gangs.
Last week William Brownfield, the US state department's top drug policy officials, claimed that Mexico's violent drug cartels are on the "verge of collapse".
"Four years ago we began a multinational effort led by the Mexican government and what do we see today? In my opinion we're looking at the beginning of the end with a decapitation of the cartels and a decrease in their operations", asserted Brownfield in an interview with Colombian daily El Tiempo.
He added "this is what we had seen in Colombia during the 1980s and beginning of the 1990s when the cartels felt the pressure of the authorities and their response was with violence." Much like Colombia during that period, Brownfield said that the violence by Mexican drug gangs is a "sign that they're on the verge of collapse."
Brownfield's comments come weeks after Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, leader of the Zetas drug cartel, was reportedly killed in a gunfight by members of Mexico's navy.
Officially Mexico's drug violence claimed over 34,000 lives in 2010 alone though some estimates claim that the number could be as high as 47,500.
Online Sources - ABC News, Univision, CNN, The Guardian