Trends in Organized Crime

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 271–289

The logic of cartel car bombings in México


DOI: 10.1007/s12117-014-9230-z

Cite this article as:
Dulin, A.L. & Patiño, J. Trends Organ Crim (2014) 17: 271. doi:10.1007/s12117-014-9230-z


The war on drugs in México has seen an unprecedented level of violence committed against civilians, the government and rival groups. The bulk of this violence has occurred since 2006, including mass killings and the adoption of new tactics such as car bombings. The aim of this article is to place car bombings within a strategic logic. A total of 16 car bombs between July 15, 2010 and July 3, 2012 were examined, following the extant literature on strategies behind violence and terrorism. The authors affirm that the use of car bombings in México’s context followed various strategic pathways associated with the strength of the group and the government. These group characteristics were applied to both the cartels and the government followed by an example to illustrate support for the assertion.


Mexico Cartel Car bombing Strategic theory 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.US Department of StateWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.University of New HavenWest HavenUSA

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