Mexico threat more serious than Iraq and Afghanistan?
Could America finally be getting serious about our southern border?
On March 6, Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was in Mexico to offer military assistance in their escalating war against the drug lords. This after several U.S. intelligence reports found that Mexico now presented as worse threat to our national security than Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan or Pakistan. Now President Obama says he’s considering putting troops on the border.
According to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Mexico now appears ready to accept the kind of help they shunned only months ago. Last week on NBC’s “Meet The Press,” Gates said, “ I think we are beginning to be in a position to help the Mexicans more than we have in the past…..I think some of the old biases against cooperation between militaries and so on, I think, are being satisfied.”
Let me translate.
President Calderon and his government are down for the count, and without a U.S. rescue operation, Mexico will soon be a narco-state. One defense official, according to The Washington Times, explained that Mexican President Felipe Calderon was “fighting for the life of Mexico” and the situation could take a turn for the worse in coming months.
The Times reported that the two largest and most violent cartels, the Sinaloa Cartel also known as the “Federation,” and “Los Zetas,” the enforcement arm of the Gulf Cartel, are negotiating a merger of sorts. Together these vicious rivals have 100,000 heavily-equipped ground troops, a force that would be better armed and nearly as large as the Mexican military. In addition, the Sinaloa Cartel has successfully infiltrated most levels of Mexico’s federal government.
Mullen acknowledged the sense of urgency. After meeting with his Mexican counterparts, he told the media he would be expediting the delivery of sophisticated military equipment, including helicopters, to Mexico as part of the three year 1.4 billion dollar initiative approved last November. In addition, Mullen spoke of the Pentagon’s willingness to provide Mexico with new surveillance and reconnaissance support, such as unmanned drones to spy on armed drug gangs, especially along the US border.
Sophisticated aerial surveillance on the border! This is outstanding news -- for Mexico and the U.S. if both countries are serious about stopping the flow of all illegal traffic.
But that’s not the case.
Two weeks ago, President Calderon blamed America for the drug war, noting that the primary cause was having the “the world’s biggest consumer’ of illegal drugs” as his neighbor. “Drug trafficking in the United States,” he said, “is fueled by the phenomenon of corruption on the part of the American authorities.” Which raises the question of his confusion of the concepts of humor and irony.
Here is what he wants done: “I think that weapons and cash cross from there to here, and that both countries should strive to make their borders safe and open to trade and workers, but closed to illegal drugs, weapons, and money trafficking.”
There you have it -- Mexico wants our border “safe and open to…workers” and, of course, their families and friends. But alongside these folks come the gangbangers, the drug runners, the criminals -- and the drugs. The openness of our border is precisely why the drug cartels set up shop in Mexico.
Law enforcement officials have told us that cartel thugs disguise themselves by hiding among the migrant communities. It is how they get here; it is how they hide in plain sight and safely operate in our communities. And they are here.
Just last week, the Houston Chronicle ran a story titled “Mexican Cartels Infiltrate Houston,” while USA Today ran “Mexican Cartels Plague Atlanta.” “The same folks who are rolling heads in the streets of Ciudad Juarez are operating in Atlanta,” says Jack Killorin, the head of Atlanta Office of National Drug Control Policy’s Task Force, “Here they are just better behaved.”
The only way we have a chance to stop the drug industry from thriving in this country is to stop the illegal invasion.
Calderon is correct that the cartels’ sophisticated equipment and the billions in drug money fueling the war originate in the U.S. and travels south across the border. But again, the only way to stop its flow is to tighten control of the border. While not a sufficient step, it is a necessary one.
So what kind of deal have our bold leaders made with the Mexico? We know Calderon would never allow surveillance designed to help him be used to disrupt the flow of illegal aliens he is sending north. If aerial surveillance detects, as it surely will, hordes of illegals making their way north, do we simply hope no drug runners are hiding in their midst?
The question needs to be asked. If the U.S. military’s surveillance detects crimes occurring on the border -- including illegal entry into our country -- will they share the information with our border agents? And will the agents be instructed to apprehend the violators? Put another way: Now that open borders have exposed us to an increasingly grave and imminent national security threat, are we ready to secure our borders?
Don’t count on it.