A new study from UCLA adds further data to illuminate the murderous inferno that is Mexico.
The study revealed that between 2005 and 2010, when president Felipe Calderón launched a war against drug cartels, the savage increase in homicides was reflected by a reduction in the average male’s lifespan from 72.5 years to 72 years in two-thirds of Mexico’s states. Additionally, men aged 15-50 saw their life expectancy plunge by six months across Mexico.
Hiram Beltrán-Sánchez, one of the study’s authors, asserted that in contrast to the decline in life expectancy in recent years, between 1940 to 2000, Mexican men’s life expectancy rose 4-5 years every decade.
Mexico’s homicide rate in the five years between 2005 and 2010, soaring to 22 murders for every 100,000 inhabitants in 2010. In areas where the drug cartels hold the most sway, Chihuahua, Sinaloa and Durango, the study found that homicides reduced male life expectancy by three years.
In July 2015, the Mexican government admitted that between 2007 and 2014, over 164,000 people were victims of homicide. As a comparison, over the same seven year period, slightly more than 103,000 people were killed in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Even when the news of supposed improvement comes, it still shows how dangerous Mexico is; last April USA Today reported, “Murders in Mexico fell for a third straight year in 2014 … There were 15,649 people murdered in Mexico in 2014, a 13.8% reduction from the previous year.”