This article analyses the gang policies of the first years of the Funes administration in El Salvador, from June 2009 until July 2012. Using securitisation theory, it explains why the administration returned to an emphasis on extraordinary measures, most of them repressive, to deal with gangs. It argues that these measures were the product of an ongoing and dynamic process in which the government was but one of the players in a complex field constituted by numerous actors. The return to repressive measures as well as the support and facilitation of a ‘gang truce’ were not the result of a rational design or a predetermined agenda, but should be seen as a series of moves in a political conjuncture, in which the Salvadorean government needed to communicate to different audiences messages of being in control.I appreciated the discussion of the Funes administration's gang policy upon taking office and up through 2011. The Funes administration entered office intending to de-securitise the government's approach to gangs. However, the gangs were too strong, the government did not have adequate policies to effectively deal with gang prevention and rehabilitation, and the media, public and private sector had little little patience for policies that that did not look tough. The government considered negotiating with gangs at this time (2009-2010) but decided not to do so.
I don't think that the article was too strong on what led the administration to support the 2012 gang truce but there we see another two-pronged
The administration had hoped that its continued arrest and prosecution of gang members and reliance on the military would provide them with the political cover to support an unpopular gang truce. It didn't work. The government never did gain the support of the population or the United States for the truce and homicides have increased 70 percent during the first six months of the year.