MEXICO CITY – The diplomatic crisis generated by Pope Francis using the term “Mexicanization” shows, according to experts, that the Mexican government is more concerned over semantics than the horror expressed by the bishops of Mexico to the Pope.
“More than Mexicanization, I think what is important is what the Mexican bishops communicate to him,” political scientist Javier Oliva told Efe in an interview.
Through a letter to the Argentine legislator Gustavo Vera, the Pontiff expressed his concern this week about the increase of drug trafficking in Argentina and that the “Mexicanization” of the country must be avoided.
In the letter, Pope Francis said that he was talking with some Mexican bishops and that the horror of violence in Mexico is the real issue.
Far from worrying about the context of Pope’s words, the Mexican government showed its displeasure at the term “Mexicanization” and on Monday sent a diplomatic note to the Vatican saying that the Pontiff stigmatized the country by using the word.
The Vatican clarified Tuesday that. “The Pope did not in any way intend to offend the Mexican population, for whom he holds special affection, nor to underestimate the commitment of the Mexican government in its fight against narco-trafficking.”
Although Mexican Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Meade on Wednesday said that the issue was resolved, the statement has raised the fear that the pejorative word will end up generalizing the country, as was the case years ago with Colombia and “Colombianization” and the Balkans with “Balkanization.”
According to Oliva, there is something that has escaped comment: a few weeks ago Pope Francis nominated a cardinal of the diocese of Morelia, in the violent state of Michoacan, implying that the Pontiff seeks to give more visibility to what happens in Mexico.
“I think that a much more elegant and refined policy would have fixed this by private means. To do so by official letter does nothing more than expose to Mexico the truth of what the Pope said. I think it is a bad political strategy,” he added.