How did the Los Angeles Cartels develop their military strategies?
The brain drain of Mexican Special Forces into cartel activities began in the 1990s when a drug cartel required a cadre of ex-Gafe troops to form its Los Zetas paramilitary enforcement unit. Former Special Forces commander turned kingpin Osiel Cárdenas Guillén envisioned sicarios with the discipline of a soldier. According to the Mexican Ministry of Defense, at least 3,383 skilled troops fled the country between 1994 and 2015. The cartels’ lethal leaking of methods and knowledge is a thorn in U.S. Latin American security strategy. Any official training for Mexico’s professional military will fall into the cartel’s hands. The inability of the Mexican government to safeguard its soldiers from poverty is a cautionary story on military welfare.