ProQuest's Latest Addition to DNSA Chronicles U.S.-Mexico Counternarcotics Efforts

Newly obtained declassified documents allow researchers to evaluate successes and failures of U.S. drug policy in Latin America

Dec 05, 2013, 10:47 ET from ProQuest

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Dec. 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- ProQuest's unique relationship with the National Security Archive (the Archive) – an award-winning research institute, library and publisher of declassified documentation based at The George Washington University – is enabling researchers to explore nearly a half-century of counternarcotics cooperation between the U.S. and Mexico – an issue of persistent U.S. domestic, regional and national security concern. Digital National Security Archive: Mexico-United States Counternarcotics Policy, 1969-2013 encompasses newly declassified records from the Nixon administration through the first term of the Obama presidency, tracing the often-contentious relations between the hemisphere's largest consumer of illegal drugs and a principal producer and transit point for those substances, a topic with implications for U.S. ties to the rest of Latin America.


"The National Security Archive's relationship with ProQuest makes a particularly powerful content set far more accessible to students, researchers, historians, political scientists and international relations specialists," said Archive Director Tom Blanton. "These records provide an essential foundation for understanding how the United States and Mexico relate to one another by showing their common struggle. It's an extraordinary lens through which to view the shared history of these nations."

Comprised of once-secret documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), presidential libraries, and the U.S. National Archives, as well as carefully selected reports and congressional documents, Digital National Security Archive: Mexico-United States Counternarcotics Policy, 1969-2013, enables researchers to study the multi-layered impact of illegal drug smuggling on neighboring nations. Beginning with Operation Intercept -- President Nixon's unilateral attempt to stem marijuana traffic by closing the Mexico-U.S. border -- the collection provides insight into the impact of U.S. drug policy on Mexico-U.S. relations; the infusion of U.S. counternarcotics aid in the form of equipment, training, and joint eradication programs; the transformation of drug control from law enforcement to a national security concern; the increased role of the Mexican military in drug control; the rise of Mexican cartels, drug violence, and official corruption; and efforts, through the Merida Initiative, to support judicial reform, institution-building, and institutionalization of rule-of-law. Researchers can explore specific themes such as the priority of drug policy from the Nixon through Obama administrations, the shift in drug trafficking from Miami to Mexico, the killing of DEA agent Enrique Camarena and the subsequent investigation, efforts to control gun smuggling from the U.S. and money laundering, as well as many others.

Earlier this year, ProQuest published its fortieth collection in partnership with the Archive -- CIA Covert Operations: From Carter to Obama, 1977-2010. Each collection has been carefully curated by an expert in the field and is years in the making. The expert selects the most important documents based on broad archival research; active use of the FOIA, including going to court if necessary; and even the incorporation of documents from other countries, as appropriate. The result is a comprehensive set of declassified materials providing unparalleled coverage of the subject, event, or region. 

ProQuest's expansive digitization program broadens access to unique information that advances research and global knowledge. To learn about ProQuest's mission to make serious research more productive, visit

About the National Security Archive

The National Security Archive is an innovative, award-winning research institute, library and publisher of declassified documentation based at The George Washington University.  Since 1985 the Archive's mission has been to expand public knowledge and debate over critical issues in United States foreign policy by identifying, making available (through the Freedom of Information Act), organizing, indexing and disseminating the primary sources that make up the available historical record. 

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