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|“||Raul and his father started over, sold drugs for easy money. They became rich, powerful legends of Managua. The Menendez cartel was all but untouchable.||„|
|~ Javier Salazar indicating Menendez's power.|
The Menendez Cartel is a criminal organization and antagonistic faction in Call of Duty: Black Ops II and Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified. The cartel was created by Jose Luiz Menendez, and later lead by his son, Raul, to gather money via drug and arms trafficking in the 1980s. The cartel was later dissolved by the CIA, and was merged with Raul's global terrorist organization, Cordis Die.
The cartel was founded by Jose Luiz Menendez, who was once an ordinary man until he and his family lost everything due to a earthquake in 1972. As a result of losing everything, Jose and his family resorted to drug trade to make money, and eventually created the Menendez cartel to continue to collect money. The family became prominent in Nicaragua by their drug game and other activities, leading to them to become rich and powerful. According to Javier Salazar, the cartel became legends of Managua, and were "all but untouchable".
The cartel's infamy gained the attention of the Central Intelligence Agency in the 1980s, and authorized an assassination order on Jose. The assassination took place on May 21, 1982 and the CIA succeeded in assassinating Jose in front of Raul, who survived due to the CIA not considering him a target. Raul escaped from the area via a pick up truck, and became the leader of the cartel after his father's death. Despite the assassination, the cartel kept its high reputation in the 1980s, and Raul managed to obtain connections to the Soviet Colonel Lev Kravchenko and Panama's dictator, Manuel Noriega.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II
Raul's dealing and connections with the Soviets caused him to gain attention from the CIA just like his father, the agency sent Alex Mason, Frank Woods, and Jason Hudson to capture him. The CIA were assisted by the Panamanian Defense Forces, which were led by Noriega. Despite the successful capture, Noriega decided to let Menendez go, before the latter went to save his sister from the PDF. The CIA managed to combat the cartel's members, and searched the house before Woods threw a grenade that killed Raul' sister, Josefina. The lost of his sister gave Raul a new hatred for the United States, and the cartel was dissolved and merged with Cordis Die before 2025.