Latin America and the Caribbean is considered to be the most violent region in the world. Despite widespread gains in education, poverty reduction, and living standards, Latin American countries continue to have disproportionately high rates of violent crime. Some may find this puzzling, since many of these countries have particularly powerful military and police forces. This then raises the question: Why haven't new policing strategies in the region had any impact? Is Latin America in a 'Security Trap'?
After years of mainstream media silence El Salvador is back in the news. Heralded as a success story in the early 1990s, El Salvador was celebrated as a model of a “negotiated revolution” (Karl 1992) with the signing of United Nations brokered Peace Accords on January 16, 1992 between the right wing Salvadoran government and the insurgent Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN). More than twenty years later, a different story erupted. By the summer of 2014, U.S.