The Paradox of Unilateralism: Institutionalizing Failure In U.S.-Mexican Drug Strategies
AbstractRealism posits that strong states use compulsory power to influence the behavior of weaker ones. If true, then U.S. policy toward Mexico on a key national security issue such as drugs should illustrate that claim and policy outcomes should reflect U.S. preferences. Yet, in exploring a series of bilateral case studies, this article suggests that unilateral U.S. government initiatives do not achieve their specified goals. Rather, we argue that Mexico effectively employs a series of “strangulation strategies.” These derail U.S. initiatives and –under specific conditions– result in institutional agreements that proscribe certain forms of behavior and reduce future U.S. autonomy.
Copyright (c) 2015 Simon Reich, Mark Aspinwall
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