The US-Mexico relationship is again in the news, specially after the release of Caro-Quintero:
"Mr. Caro Quintero's release with 12 years left on his 40-year sentence "drove a spike in the heart of Mexican-American bilateral drug enforcement efforts," the nine previous D.E.A. administrators wrote in a letter last week.
"This incident -- the early release of the drug cartel leader responsible for the kidnapping, torture and murder of a federal D.E.A. agent -- was particularly outrageous," it continued, "because it represented a repudiation of the sacrifices that agents on both sides of the border have made for the last four decades."
They have also begun talking to members of Congress about possible hearings and other steps to keep up pressure on the case, which at the time of Mr. Camarena's killing, sent United States-Mexico relations into a nosedive that it took years to recover from.
Aside from the death of Mr. Camarena, Mr. Caro Quintero was convicted of killing a Mexican pilot who worked with the agent and two other Americans a few months before Mr. Camarena was abducted on Feb. 7, 1985 -- John Walker and Albert Radelat, whom he falsely accused of being drug agents after they stumbled into a cantina where he was holding a party. Mr. Caro Quintero was also implicated, but not charged, in the killings of four other Americans."
The Mexicans had to know that an "early release" would shock the government north of the border. You just don't release a prisoner of this importance over a "legal technicality".
Remember the shock when Scotland released that Libyan prisoner convicted of the 1988 PAN AM bombing? This is similar. There are DEA agents working undercover in Mexico who had to wonder about the seriousness of the Mexican government after releasing such a prisoner over "a technicality."
Legal technicalities are for other prisoners not a man like Caro-Quintero.
Beyond that, It's hard to believe that President Pena-Nieto did not know that the release was in the works; and, why didn't President Pena-Nieto call President Obama and explain it?
It does not smell good. It's hard to believe that all of these events just happened without Mexico trying to send the US a message.
As my Mexican friend said: "We know you spy on us but please don't put it on our front pages".
I think that's what the sudden release of Caro-Quintero is all about.