Criminal Insurgencies in Mexico and the Americas

The Gangs and Cartels Wage War

Edited by Robert J. Bunker

© 2013 – Routledge

210 pages

Purchasing Options:
New in Paperback: 9780415533751
pub: 2013-07-03
US Dollars$56.95
Hardback: 9780415533447
pub: 2012-09-04
US Dollars$160.00

About the Book

In recent years, the south-western border of the United States has come under increasing pressure from the activities of Mexican narco-insurgents. These insurgents have developed rapidly from beginnings as nebulous gangs into networked cartels that have exposed the porosity of the border. These cartels declare no allegiance to any nation and are engaging in asymmetrical warfare against sovereign states throughout Mexico and in Central America. Within such states, de facto political control is shifting to the cartels in the ‘areas of impunity’ that have emerged.

This book addresses these concerns and focuses on the criminal insurgencies being waged by the gangs and cartels. It is divided into sections on theory, Mexico, and the Americas and contains a number of introductory essays pertaining to this premier security threat to the United States and her allies in the region. Topics covered include criminal and spiritual insurgency, cartel weapons, corruption, feral cities, Los Zetas, politicized gangs, and threat analysis in Central America.

This book will be a valuable resource to scholars in the fields of regional security, criminal justice and American Studies. It will be of great benefit to military and civil policymakers and practitioners in the areas of law enforcement and counternarcotics.

This book was published as a special issue of Small Wars and Insurgencies.


''Criminal Insurgencies' covers many diverse aspects of the Mexican drug cartels and associated organized crime and gang activity. The book's strength is its opening of our eyes to many facts about the cartels and their rise that are not commonly known. I recommend this informative collection of essays to scholars and students interested in Mexico, the U.S.-Mexico bilateral relationship, and the criminal justice system generally.' - Robert Bonner, e-IR, May 2013

'The book’s overall goal is to provide academics, policymakers and laypersons with information on the security threat this new form of narco-insurgency poses to the United States and the Americas. Although it is limited to the topics selected by the contributors and the editor, the book is a valuable addition to the literature on the development of insurgent warfare.' - Russell Crandall and Liam Miner, Survival, June 2013

"Criminal Insurgencies in Mexico and the Americas is worth the read; it provides a rich, case-based description of the breadth and depth to which transnational criminal organizations have penetrated societies in the Americas." Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Books

Table of Contents

Editor’s note Robert J. Bunker Foreword Paul Rich and Thomas Durell-Young Preface: Los Zetas and a new barbarism Samuel Logan 1. Grand strategic overview: epochal change and new realities for the United States Robert J. Bunker Part 1: Theory 2. Rethinking insurgency: criminality, spirituality and societal warfare in the Americas John P. Sullivan and Robert J. Bunker 3. Integrating feral cities and 3rd phase cartels/3rd generation gangs research: the rise of criminal (narco) city networks and BlackFor Robert J. Bunker and John P. Sullivan Part 2: Mexico 4. A broken Mexico: allegations of collusion between the Sinaloa cartel and Mexican political parties Malcolm Beith 5. Just where do Mexican cartel weapons come from? David A. Kuhn and Robert J. Bunker 6. Silver over the border: US law enforcement corruption on the Southwest Border Graham H. Turbiville, Jr. Part 3: The Americas 7. Security, stability, and sovereignty challenges of politicized gangs and insurgents in the Americas Max G. Manwaring 8. Central America besieged: cartel and maras country threat analysis Steven S. Dudley

About the Editor

Robert J. Bunker is an epochal warfare studies scholar and security consultant. Past associations include the Counter-OPFOR Corporation, University of Southern California, FBI Academy (as Futurist in Residence), National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center –West, and the Los Angeles Terrorism Early Warning Group.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Military / General