When is enough enough?
Today’s Washington Times Insider (registration required) carries a new story of incursions by Mexican soldiers into U.S. territory:
|The U.S. Border Patrol has warned agents in Arizona of incursions into the United States by Mexican soldiers “trained to escape, evade and counterambush” if detected — a scenario Mexico denied yesterday.|
|The warning to Border Patrol agents in Tucson, Ariz., comes after increased sightings of what authorities described as heavily armed Mexican military units on the U.S. side of the border. The warning asks the agents to report the size, activity, location, time and equipment of any units observed.|
Of course, the Mexican government was quick to deny anything of the sort:
|…Rafael Laveaga, spokesman for the Mexican Embassy in Washington, denied that Mexican military personnel are crossing into the United States.|
|“I strongly deny any incursions by the Mexican military as inaccurate allegations,” Mr. Laveaga said. “The Mexican military is a well-respected institution with strict rules on how to control Northern Mexico. It maintains a protocol of not going within a mile of the border, and those who would trespass would be severely punished.”|
|Mr. Laveaga said some drug smugglers headed “both north and south” wear uniforms and drive military-type vehicles, and might have “confused” U.S. authorities.|
However, the Border Patrol was skeptical of this “explanation” by the Mexican Embassy:
|“Give me a break,” said T.J. Bonner, a 27-year Border Patrol veteran who heads the National Border Patrol Council. “Intrusions by the Mexican military to protect drug loads happen all the time and represent a significant threat to the agents.|
|“Why else would they be in the area, firing at federal agents in the United States? There is no other explanation,” said Mr. Bonner, whose organization represents all 10,000 of the nonsupervisory Border Patrol agents.|
|He also challenged reports that Mexican military units had crossed mistakenly into the United States, saying, “Every country’s military has a [global positioning system] nowadays, including the Mexicans.|
|“If the border is so poorly marked, why don’t the thousands of Border Patrol agents working 24/7 along it ever seem to get lost, and none of us have been issued a GPS,” he said.|
Meanwhile, The Pentagon claims that it knows nothing, but the Department of Homeland Security has records of Mexican military incursions dating back to 1996.
In addition, there are outright attacks on Border Patrol agents. The assailants are suspected to be current or former Mexican military personnel:
|U.S. law-enforcement officials have long thought that current and former Mexican soldiers are being paid to protect drug shipments bound for the United States.|
|Several agents said the attacks have escalated in the past two years as U.S. security efforts on the border have increased — including the July shooting of two agents in an ambush near Nogales, Ariz., by assailants in black commando-type clothing, who fired more than 50 rounds. Authorities said the gunmen used military-style cover-and-concealment tactics to escape back into Mexico. No one has been arrested.|
This action is congruent with the Mexican government’s push to send illegal aliens across our borders. Not only does their economy need the remittances, it’s obvious they need the drug money, too:
|Several former Mexican soldiers trained in the U.S. as anti-drug commandos are now part of a well-armed gang known as the “Zetas,” which has been linked to hundreds of killings and kidnappings on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border in southeastern Texas.|
|Many of the gang members have been identified as ex-members of an elite, anti-drug paratroop and intelligence battalion called the Special Air Mobile Force Group, who deserted in 1991.|
The corruption in Mexico is so flagrant that it has become dangerous for Americans to visit there. Back in March, 2005, Gates of Vienna posted a warning put out by the State Department:
|At least 27 U.S. citizens have been abducted or have vanished along Mexico’s border with Texas over the past six months, caught in what U.S. officials have described as an escalating turf war between competing drug lords. Fourteen have been released; two have been found dead. The fate of the others is unknown. By contrast, three or four such abductions were reported each year since 2000.|
Now why do you suppose this fertile and oil-producing (and increasingly unfriendly) neighbor to our south is such a mess?
Hat tip: commenter, Wally Ballou