Thursday, July 12, 2007

Mexico Collapse?

My article on the Decline of the Mexican Nation-State is now up at The Oil Drum. This comes, as promised, as an update to my New Years prediction that 2007 would see the collapse of the Mexican economy. This article comes on the heels of a very significant--and largely ignored by the MSM--event: a string of rebel attacks on oil infrastructure in Mexico. Significantly, these attacks shut down production at several "just-in-time" production facilities of major international companies such as Honda, Kellogg's, Hershey's, and Nissan. It is not yet clear whether this was the goal of a highly advanced, effects-based targeting plan by these guerrillas, or just luck on their part. However, as the effects from these shut-downs ripple through the logistics chains of these multinationals, the ultimate economic impact of this attack will likely be enormous. The greatest danger is that the rebel group's own evaluation of this new targeting focus drives them to continue a campaign of attacks against oil infrastructure--the significant, if partially unintended, impact of these first attacks will strongly support exactly that conclusion.

The discussion on my article at The Oil Drum is already proving quite interesting, with some particularly important graphs courtesy of Khebab:

From the looks of things, unless something miraculous happens with production out of Chincopec and Ku-Maloob-Zaap fields in the next two years to offset decline in Cantarell, the situation is about to get much worse...


bryant said...


Did you see Barnett Rubin's essay on Juan Cole's Informed Comment Global Affairs?

It underlines the newness and fragility of the nation-state, especially in places where the Westphalian system was imposed without regard to demography and the natural sympathies of people. Rubin Barnett had several interesting insights.

Jeff Vail said...

Looks like is also picking up on this notion. See this link to a pirated version of one of their recent reports:

whaler said...

You may have seen this article already (courtesy of, but it looks like definite confirmation of trouble for Mexico (and the rest of the oil-dependent world). How long until other oil providers start giving out this kind of info, and how will the public react?
-Ben S.

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