- That training at Fort Benning really paid off, didn't it? According to the Washington Times, an FBI bulletin says a group of coyotes (immigrant smugglers) is paying protection money to Los Zetas, the US-trained Mexican special forces team that defected to work for one of the major drug cartels. "Los Roqueros reportedly pays smuggling rights or 'a quota' to the Zetas, former Mexican military officers trained in the United States as elite anti-drug specialists who have since deserted and signed on as mercenaries for drug smugglers. About 200 Zetas are thought to be headquartered in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, across the Rio Grande from Laredo, but have expanded their operations all along the Texas border." The bulletin says Los Roqueros have given orders to "shoot to scare" Border Patrol agents.
- All hell breaking loose in Nuevo Laredo. The Tamaulipas state police chief and another officer were assassinated and two more injured in a hail of gunfire yesterday in Nuevo Laredo. "Investigators recovered more than 100 bullet casings from R-15 and Kalashnikov assault rifles from the scene, police said." As of yesterday, 42 people have died in ambush-style shootings in Nuevo Laredo since the beginning of the year.
- Beware 'overt' movements at border traffic stops. A Hudspeth County Sheriff's Deputy shot an unarmed 19-year old marijuana smuggler on Saturday, firing ten shots after the young mule allegedly made an "overt move" toward his waist during a traffic stop. No weapon was found in the vehicle. Something doesn't sound right there - I'd like to see the video from that one. Video from another recent incident in Hudspeth County failed to support deputies' story.
- Because Mexican drug cartels don't have enough money. In a bit of a non-sequitur, the US Senate added anti-meth amendments to the Patriot Act requiring peudoephedrine to be placed behind the counter. As Grits has noted previously, the Honolulu Star-Bulletin pointed out that "States that have placed restrictions on sales of medicines containing pseudoephedrine have experienced a rise in stimulants coming from Mexican cartels."
- Results from immigration crackdown - 1 in 20 US workers illegal residents: The New York Times reported Sunday, "Demographers estimate that six million to seven million illegal immigrants are working in the United States; that is some 5 percent of the nation's work force. ... The current approach hasn't halted illegal immigration: some 400,000 to 500,000 illegal immigrants enter the United States every year, almost double the rate of the 1980's, before the buildup in border enforcement."
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
US policies worsen out-of-control border
This is nuts. We train Mexican anti-drug forces, the drug cartels hire them. We ban meth precursors, the drug cartels get richer. Beefed up Border Patrols result in doubling illegal immigration. Gunplay on both sides of the border has become common as dirt. It's hard to deny the futility of America's failed security strategy on the Texas-Mexico border, as these recent news reports attest: