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Former President Carlos Salinas de Gortari said Friday in Mexicali that the military needs to stay involved in the fight against organized crime until police forces can be strengthened enough to take on the battle on their own.
Salinas spoke as part of 50th anniversary celebrations for CETYS University in Mexicali and to promote his latest book,
"¿Qué hacer, la Alternativa Ciudadana?" (What to do? The Citizens' Alternative)
He told Frontera that he is involved in politics in the sense that he is involved in the debate of ideas. The magazine Proceso, however, says he has influence in the Mexican Congress and was, at least for a time, an adviser to Institutional Revolutionary Party presidential frontrunner Enrique Peña Nieto.
Previous mention of Salinas connection to Peña Nieto.
He said the nation is not at risk from narcoterrorism or from being a failed state, but that the battle against drug traffickers is of utmost importance and requires international cooperation. He also apparently referred to himself and to populist politician Andrés Manuel López Obrador as "innombrables," he who shall not be named, perhaps a la Voldemort in Harry Potter. Antonio Heras column (PDF).
It certainly appears that Salinas has been rehabilitated, at least within the PRI. Four of the state's five mayors, all from the PRI, attended, as did Baja California Sen. Fernando Castro Trenti and a host of other top PRI officials. Tijuana Mayor Carlos Bustamante, also of the PRI, did not attend as he was in Mexico City for the 43rd National Chemical Industry conference.