Chaos in Culiacán, Sinaloa

There was chaos in Culiacán after Ovidio Guzmán, El Chapo's son, was arrested

Chaos in Culiacán, Sinaloa
There were clashes between cartel gunmen and federal forces following the detention of Ovidio Guzman, son of drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, in Culiacan, Sinaloa on October 17 - Photo: Alfredo Estrella/AFP
English 20/10/2019 09:28 Mexico City Editorial Actualizada 09:35
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The Mexican government tried to explain the failed operation to arrest Ovidio Guzmán, El Chapo Guzmán's son, which sparked a pandemonium in Culiacán, Sinaloa, by arguing that his release was a decision made to protect the inhabitants of Sinaloa in case the criminal had been extradited to the U.S.

Andrés Manuel López Obrador's administration celebrated the decision as the triumph of reason because the physical integrity of hundreds or perhaps thousands of innocents could have been at risk after the arrest of one person; during wars, the loss of civilian lives is coldly defined as collateral damage.

Although it is true that the reasons behind the release of Ovidio Guzmán sound logical, to protect the lives and assets of innocent people through the prevention of a clash with criminals who were willing to hurt civilians to pressure the government, the truth is that this incident sets the precedent that it is possible to bend the government if criminals take civilians hostage, which will have a high price for the lives that were being preserved.

This incident reminds us of the existence of a policy not to negotiate with terrorists since the same experience in other parts of the world shows that although innocent lives are saved during a crisis, the decision will condemn even more innocents in the future because negotiating will set a precedent: governments give in. It's been reported that criminals, driven by their ego and arrogance, increase the use of violence, which worsens the situation.

An example of this also took place in Culiacán, when several inmates escaped from prison as a way to generate more chaos because the escape of each of these people represents a potential danger for society as they could harm innocents who shouldn't have been in danger if authorities were in control. For this reason, it can be said that it is an illusion to save lives during a crisis because hundreds more are condemned, perhaps even thousands more, by being put at risk again.


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