According to Mexican authorities, the Zetas have become the biggest drug trafficking organization in Mexico. A recent report from Stratfor, based on data from Mexico's attorney general's office, says the group now operates in 17 states, surpassing the geographical sway of the once-dominant Sinaloa Federation.
One announcement from Obama's Mexico trip was a bilateral forum on higher education. Educational exchanges between the US and Mexico have stagnated or fallen over the past decade.
While Mexico's President Peña Nieto hasn't backed away from using the military to fight crime entirely, he's promised a more multifaceted approach. That includes a newly launched crime prevention plan.
The Zetas have many sides, but how and why the gang settled in Monterrey explains a lot about who they are and how they operate.
A weakening of the Zetas in the northeast may discourage the drug gang's forays into other parts of Mexico, but internal strife often leads to more murders, writes InSight Crime.
Mexican drug trafficking organizations are already operating in an estimated 1,000 US cities, but according to a recent investigation by The New York Times, they are on the racetracks too.