Violent Corruption and Violent Lobbying: Logics of Cartel-State Conflict in Mexico, Brazil and Colombia

Why have militarized crackdowns on drug cartels had wildly divergent outcomes, sometimes exacerbating cartel-state conflict, as in Mexico and, for decades, in Brazil, but sometimes reducing violence, as with Rio de Janeiro's new 'Pacification' (UPP) strategy?  CDDRL-CISAC Post Doctoral Fellow Benjamin Lessing will distinguish key logics of violence, focusing on violent corruption--cartels' use of coercive force in the negotiation of bribes. Through this channel, crackdowns can lead to increased fighting unless the intensity of state repression is made conditional on cartels' use of violence--a key difference between Mexico and Brazil.