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Gangland: The Rise of the Mexican Drug Cartels from El Paso to Vancouver Paperback – Nov 1 2011

2.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley (Nov. 1 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118008057
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118008058
  • Product Dimensions: 15 x 1.5 x 22.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #447,984 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Back Cover

A STARTLING LOOK AT MEXICO'S NEW POWER ELITE—THE MEXICAN DRUG CARTELS

Mexico's war against narcotics and the criminal syndicates that traffic in them not only looks bad on the surface, but compared to Colombia in the '80s and '90s, the situation is even more desperate and terrifying. Since mirroring the policies that Nixon and successive US presidents pioneered, and enacting its own War on Drugs, Mexico's rates of rape, torture, murder and assassination have skyrocketed, as has the business of illegal narcotics. Juárez, what used to be a rollicking party town for Americans and Mexicans alike, now has a murder rate that exceeds both Baghdad and Kandahar—combined.

Gangland is a first-hand examination of the rise of the Mexican drug cartels, and traces their origins, evolution, and how they've grown in lock-step with the failed narcotics policies of North America. Warring amongst themselves as much as with the authorities, the cartels have earned their reputation for violence and intimidation with daylight gun battles, corpses hung from overpasses and coolers full of severed heads. Their power has escalated thanks to a police force that's often seen to be corrupt or incompetent, a government barely in control of itself, and military personnel serving within their own borders who must cover their faces to keep their families safe from the long, ultraviolent arm of the cartels. Stuck in the center of this maelstrom are the vast majority of Mexican citizens seeking only peace, prosperity and security, and finding little to none in their homeland.

Two questions dominate Mexico's drug war: Who's in charge, the government or the cartels? And how deeply have the cartels infiltrated the United States and Canada? One thing is clear: the War on Drugs has failed, and soon, so may Mexico.

About the Author

Jerry Langton is a journalist and the author of several books, including the national bestsellers Fallen Angel: The Unlikely Rise of Walter Stadnick in the Canadian Hells Angels and Biker: Inside the Nefarious World of an Outlaw Motorcycle Gang. Over the past two decades, Langton's work has appeared in The Toronto Star; The Globe & Mail; National Post; Maclean's; The Daily News of New York City; The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J.; American Banker and dozens of other publications.


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Customer Reviews

2.4 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Histrionics stitched together in an acceptable overview:
drug lords don't give interviews and don't do so here either:
innocent people losing their lives, or dedicating/losing their
lives fighting an internal war of public terrorism is the
central theme carefully dissected here over a period of time,
the extremely poor get hurt the most.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I didn't enjoy the first two chapters, Skipped thru them then enjoyed the book
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Format: Kindle Edition
Unfortunately, this author seems to be under the impression that all that is necessary to sell a book is to add the "word cartel to the title. This author is ill informed and knows virtually nothing about the drug wars in Mexico. In fact, there is almost no mention of cartels or Mexico until page 60. Readers would be much better looking for Iona Grillo's book on the Last Capo or Malcolm Beith's book on the same topic. Better still, the English Translastion of Anabel Hernandez's book (Los Señores del Narco) is now available in English (Narcoland). Get those instead.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
but no lessons were imparted. Some of the stories are quite spooky. The book reads like a very long magazine article.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Please ' save yourself some money and avoid this book at all costs. It is misnamed, full of errors, and has no documentation to support some of the claims made by the author. I wish there was a way of giving Zero stars to the review

I am not finished and may find something positive to say before I reach the end, but the greatest predictor of the future is the past and the present and the first 100 pages are simply awful.

I suspected that there would be trouble when the author mispelled (and continued to mispell) the term for the mexican popular music style name the corrido. He refers to narcocorridA and uses this term throughout the book. That's not the only spelling or misidentification of terms found in this book. Mestizo becomes Mezito, knicknames of people become mangled and switched around to unrecognizable forms. The review of Mexican history is simplistic and looks like it might have been cribbed directly from Wikipedia. Doesn't Wiley have editors who do fact checking?

And the title is very strange. There is NO mention of Cartels until page 56 ' a quarter of the way into the book, and then there are another 5 pages before he begins to lay out some of his understanding of the history of the cartels. And he immediately makes two errors of fact ' the most egregious being completely incorrect information about one of the first generation narcotraffickers Pedro Aviles Perez. He goes from bad to worse by page 65 when he attempts to describe the emergence of the Guadalajara Cartel and its leaders.

It seems to me that this author is simply trying to cash in on a hot topic even though he is highly unqualified and misinformed about what is happening in Mexico.
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