The military as a hindrance in Mexico's consolidation of democracy
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The argument in this thesis is that the Mexican military stands as a hindrance in Mexico's consolidation because of the lack of executive and legislative controls over the armed forces, and military prerogatives. The loss of power by the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) left a void of control overt the military and no other mechanisms exists to control the military. The military's prerogatives include a unique relationship to the chief executive, active-duty military participation in the cabinet, a role in intelligence and police functions and others. These prerogatives make them autonomous, intrusive in society, and are turning the country into a militarized zone, and when coupled with the lack of controls over the military, equates to a volatile mixture needing only a spark to set off an explosion of military contestation of authority. A threat to their prerogatives by politicians or the president could in the future be the spark that ignites that dangerous mixture into a contestation of authority that hinders the democratic process. Finally, the problems with insurgency, drugs, and crimes have caused the government to leave the affairs of internal security to the military, giving them more prerogatives. As a result, the military has expanded its presence throughout Mexico and fulfills many functions in society, and when coupled with a lack of executive and legislative controls over the military, hinders the consolidation of democracy.
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