violence rises as drug wars escalate - 5/11/09
-- Obama Fines Mexican Cartels - 4/16/09
-- US to name Border Czar to watch Mexican border - Posted 5/11/09
-- Minuteman Project president, Jim Gilchrist, to President Obama: "Send in the Airborne Rangers" - 3/11/2009
-- Border Violence: Drug Cartel's Tentacles Stretch Across U.S. - Posted 2/26/2009
-- Escalating violence on our Southern Border - Posted 1/27/2009
-- Where's the fence - Posted 1/26/2009
-- Texas taxpayers spent $678 million on healthcare for illegal immigrants - 12/14/08
-- Signs - posted 10/24/2008 at bottom of page
violence rises as drug wars escalate
PATROL: Groups watch for illegal activity on the U.S. southern boundary.
By: Amy Ellison
While asleep in his bed, Ron Hoebeck awoke with a gun pressed against his head and heard a voice say, “Get up.” He was abducted into Mexico to meet with the drug lord whose men Hoebeck repeatedly stopped while they tried to smuggle drugs into the United States through his property. “He could have killed me just to set an example,” Hoebeck said.
During the last fiscal year, violence at the border rose by 11 percent; however, there has been no net increase of people trying to cross the border illegally, according to a report from the Department of Homeland Security.
The issue of illegal immigration is taking a deadly turn because of the drug wars claiming the streets in Mexico and violence is spilling over to America. Civilians are getting involved, and grass roots organizations like the Minutemen Civil Defense Corps and the Border Patrol Auxiliary are working to strengthen the U.S. border.
In 2008, the U.S. Border Patrol caught about 705,000 illegals trying to cross the border, and California alone spent $14 billion in social services for illegal immigrants. But with the current drug war raging in Mexico, the Border Patrol is finding more than just men, women and children trying to cross into the United States — in particular, criminals.
Six U.S. Border Patrol Agents have lost their lives due to conflicts, and thousands have been injured since 2000. Night poses the greatest risk for agents because of a higher rate of violence after dark, when a majority of the ranch burglaries, assaults, and murders take place along the border.
MS-13, a gang from El Salvador, is considered the most dangerous violent gang in the U.S. It has been known to smuggle drugs and guns across the border, but more recently they are being linked with drug cartel leaders. Some say they’ve been working with Hamas and Al Qaeda.
Reportedly, prayer rugs, the Koran, and terrorist-linked documents have been left behind on land south of the American border. The Department of Homeland Security is briefing Border Patrol agents on anti-terrorism tactics, and the private Minutemen Civil Defense Corps and Border Patrol Auxiliary have brought in a terrorist expert to lecture members on how to identify a possible terrorist threat.
“We do what our government won’t. We believe in our country and the United States Constitution,” said Minuteman Kate Hilton.
Organizations like the Minutemen and BPA work hand-in-hand with the United States Border Patrol and focus on visual monitoring of the border. They aim to make themselves a deterrent to those who cross the border.
The groups are comprised of concerned citizens who volunteer their time. Politicians like Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger have called them heroes, while others have labeled them as reckless vigilantes. They often camp out in recreational vehicles at areas know for border crossing.
“We take safety very seriously out there. We have never had any casualties or serious injuries on either side and have never fired a gun at an illegal,” Carl Braun of the Border Patrol Auxiliary said.
The Minutemen and BPA frequently encounter “red herrings” or tricks used by the cartels to traffic drugs.
“They will send a large group of people straight to the border patrol to tie up officers and then run the drugs right past them.
“The border patrol will be so inundated with people, they won’t even notice the drugs being run behind them,” Hoebeck said.
Mexican drug cartels smuggle in about $30 billion in narcotics every year, and there have been about 8,000 drug-related murders in Mexico since January 2008. The disorder in Mexico is a result of the corruption of officials by the cartels and no end to the conflict is in sight, many say, until Mexico’s government and law enforcement can be restructured.
“We cannot stop the cartels as long as they keep bribing large amounts of police and soldiers. We have to deal with the issue of corruption by a major change in our political culture. This is our problem,” said Victor Clark Alfaro, director of the Fresno based Binational Center for the Development of Oaxaca Indigenous Communities.
The U.S. Border Patrol continues to increase manpower at the border and credits the reduction in numbers of people illegally crossing the border to the increase in security.
Another view holds that the U.S. economic downturn is also a factor.
“We are working very diligently in protecting our borders, but there are always new obstacles we need to address. The current drug war in Mexico is a new problem, and we are working towards adjusting our protocol to accommodate these issues,” Border Patrol agent Craig Staton said.
Although Ron Hoebeck survived a close call with Mexican drug lords, he still continues his battle. “They can try to scare me, but these colors don’t run,” Hoebeck said.
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| Obama Fines Mexican Cartels
Sanctions Imposed; U.S. Firms Warned
April 16, 2009 Washington Post By Spencer S. Hsu
President Obama yesterday ratcheted up efforts to curb the flow of drugs and guns across the southern border, imposing financial sanctions against three of the most violent Mexican drug cartels and threatening to prosecute Americans who do business with them.
On the eve of his summit with Mexican President Felipe Calderón today, Obama added the cartels to the list of banned foreign "drug kingpins," a move that empowers the federal government to seize their assets, estimated to be in the billions of dollars. It also allows the government to seek criminal penalties against U.S. firms or individuals who provide weapons, launder money or transport drugs or cash for the organizations.
By targeting the cartels -- Sinaloa, Los Zetas and La Familia Michoacana -- the administration expanded its support for Calderón's crackdown on the narco-traffickers, an effort that has provoked a violent backlash and led to thousands of deaths in the past two years.
The Obama administration accelerated what is normally a year-long effort to add names to the banned list. The government did not identify assets held by the three cartels, but authorities have estimated that $19 billion to $39 billion in drug proceeds flows south each year from the United States.
The financial sanctions provide an additional tool against the organizations, whose drug and gun trafficking has proved exceedingly difficult to curtail. Mexico, for example, has seized more than 35,000 firearms from narco-traffickers since December 2006, and both governments say 90 percent of the weapons originated in the United States.
The effort to curb the southbound flow of what some have called an "iron river of guns" has faced heavy obstacles, including limited resources, relatively open access to firearms and political opposition to tighter gun regulation.
Even if the supply of U.S. guns were cut off, as long as the flow of money to the cartels continues, they could rearm by buying from other countries, including those in Eastern Europe or Central America, where surplus weapons from conflicts in the 1980s remain, analysts said.
"It's convenient for the cartels to be able to shop in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and elsewhere," said George W. Grayson, a Mexico scholar at the College of William and Mary and author of the monograph "Mexico's Struggle With 'Drugs and Thugs.' " But stopping the U.S. trade, he said, would merely place "a thorn in the side of the cartels, rather than an AK-47 in the heart."
Since 2000, 78 drug kingpin groups and individuals have been blacklisted by the U.S. government, along with nearly 500 others who have supported them. The law has been used most extensively against Colombian drug traffickers, particularly the Cali cartel.
A Treasury Department official said its office of foreign assets control is working with other agencies to identify cartel assets, but the official described a much broader net of potential liability. Anyone who knowingly deals with a cartel representative or provides goods, services or other support can face penalties, the official said, including money launderers, front companies and other facilitators. That could include banks and other financial institutions, gun dealers, money-transfer companies and transportation firms.
"If you are a Mexican company buying or receiving weapons for a cartel, you can be designated," the official said. "If you are the U.S. person selling or transporting those weapons to the cartel or any [other] designated targets, you can be fined civilly and criminally prosecuted, or both."
Julie L. Myers, a former Justice Department official who led Immigration and Customs Enforcement until last fall, said kingpin designations have been powerful tools against Colombian drug cartels, in some cases persuading defendants to agree to plea deals to protect family assets.
However, Myers said, the tactic works only if specific assets owned by the cartels, such as property, are pinpointed.
"If there's no assets [identified], it's an important symbolic gesture, but it's kind of an empty threat," she said.
Dennis Lormel, former chief of the FBI's financial crimes and terrorist financing sections, and now an executive with the consulting firm Ipsa International, said the move creates a significant deterrent for U.S. companies, which will "really have to look over their shoulders" if they do business with a cartel.
In the administration's ongoing display of attention to border issues, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and deputy national security adviser John O. Brennan traveled yesterday to Texas, New Mexico and Arizona.
Obama has committed to speeding up a three-year, $1.4 billion counter trafficking aid program for Mexico; announced plans last month to send 450 more federal agents, equipment and other resources to the border; and last week asked for $350 million as part of a supplemental war-funding bill to support border efforts.
Under U.S. prodding, Mexico is submitting more seized guns for tracing to determine where they were purchased. Also, the United States and Mexico have agreed to share a database of ballistics information that will help track weapons.
But Calderón has pressed for more action, specifically citing weaknesses in U.S. gun laws and enforcement.
His government sees a "direct correlation" between a surge in the seizures of U.S. guns in Mexico and the 2004 expiration of a U.S. ban on assault weapons, said Arturo Sarukhan, the Mexican ambassador to the United States.
Sarukhan has urged the U.S. government to enforce laws against selling guns to individuals who intend to export them to Mexico, particularly military-style assault rifles and high-caliber weapons that have fueled drug-related violence.
He has also proposed that the Obama administration reinstitute a ban on importing assault weapons that was lifted by President George W. Bush in 2001, tighten restrictions on .50-caliber rifles and give "a more prominent role along the border" to law enforcement agencies such as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Immigration and Customs Enforcement; and Customs and Border Protection.
"Most of the assault weapons are coming from the United States," Sarukhan told CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday. "The key issue right now is, how can the United States help to shut down those guns and shut down that bulk cash that is providing the drug syndicates in Mexico with the wherewithal to corrupt, to bribe, to kill?"
Staff writer Karl Vick contributed to this report.
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to name Border Czar to watch Mexican border
By EILEEN SULLIVAN, Associated Press
WASHINGTON – Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is naming a former federal prosecutor to the new post of "border czar" to oversee efforts to end drug-cartel violence along the U.S.-Mexico border and slow the tide of people crossing illegally into the United States.
An Obama administration official says Napolitano on Wednesday will name Alan Bersin, a former Justice Department official who was charged with cracking down on illegal immigration in the 1990s, to fill the post at the Homeland Security Department. The official would speak only on condition of anonymity ahead of the expected announcement in El Paso.
The Obama administration has promised to target border violence and work with Mexican authorities to curb drugs and arms trafficking. Hundreds of federal agents, along with high-tech surveillance gear and drug-sniffing dogs, are being deployed to the Southwest.
Two weeks ago, Napolitano traveled to San Diego, Mexico and Laredo, Texas, to meet with officials about border enforcement and curbing violence spurred by warring Mexican drug cartels. Last year, customs officials apprehended 792,321 people who tried to get into the U.S. through the Southwest border, and immigration officials removed more than 369,000, according to Homeland Security statistics.
Napolitano was scheduled to fly to El Paso and Columbus, N.M., on Wednesday to tour ports of entry. She then was to head to the Mariposa port in Nogales, Ariz. While there, she was to meet with local officials and discuss coordinating efforts to disrupt illegal smuggling and reduce illegal immigration.
Later, she was set to join President Barack Obama in Mexico City to meet with Mexican President Felipe Calderon.
In his new capacity at Homeland Security, Bersin will work with international officials and their counterparts in the U.S. and border states.
From 1993 to 1998, Bersin was the federal prosecutor who led the government's crackdown on illegal immigrants at the California-Mexico border. Bersin and Napolitano were both U.S. attorneys during the Clinton administration.
During his final three years, Bersin doubled as the Southwest border representative for the attorney general. Under his watch, the U.S. rolled out Operation Gatekeeper, a massive increase in border enforcement in the San Diego area.
Most recently, Bersin was chairman of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority. He also served under California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger as education secretary.
"President Obama could not have selected a more qualified, more experienced person to join his administration — especially when it comes to issues along our southwest border," Schwarzenegger said Tuesday night in a statement.
Earlier, Bersin was the superintendent of San Diego public schools. At the time, Hispanic groups decried the appointment and said Operation Gatekeeper caused a steep increase in deaths by forcing immigrants to attempt treacherous mountain and desert crossings into the United States.
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Minuteman Project president, Jim Gilchrist, to President
Obama: "Send in the Airborne Rangers"
U.S. Military Intervention in Mexico Necessary to Protect Security Interests?
By Stephen Eichler, JD, Legal Analyst and Ex. Dir., MMP, Inc.
Minuteman Project founder and president, Jim Gilchrist, again has suggested that the United States seriously consider the deployment of U.S. Army Airborne brigades into Mexico to battle what outgoing CIA Director Michael Hayden says is a threat equivalent to Al Qaeda terrorists.
Speaking on a dozen talk radio shows over the past week, Gilchrist urged that the Obama Administration give Mexico until July, 2009 to thoroughly clean out the criminal cartels that maintain a widespread influence in that country. The cartels, according to Gilchrist, represent a clear and present danger to the United States.
Citing the increasing bloodshed, and the rampant political and law enforcement corruption that seems to dominate Mexico's infrastructure, Gilchrist said "It is time to give Mexico an ultimatum: Either terminate the criminal empires that influence your nation, and threaten to cripple the United States, or risk the incursion of U.S. soldiers to do the job for you."
U.S. Taxpayers Help Foot Mexico's Cost of Law Enforcement
The U.S. Government has committed $1.4 billion in foreign aid, and Mexican President Felipe Calderone's administration has spent over $6 billion in the past two years, to combat Mexico-based drug and slave-trading cartels, some of which have been operating with impunity for decades.
"I am very skeptical about where and how that U.S. money is being used," Gilchrist continued. "It is all too common for U.S. taxpayer money sent to foreign countries under the guise of foreign "aid" to end up aiding only corrupt foreign officials and their cronies. While that kind of money will get the attention and temporary pro-American allegiance of the foreign political governors, it may do little for Mexican law enforcement and military personnel in their battle to eliminate the influential financial powerhouses created by the criminal cartels themselves."
Deployment of Airborne Rangers
Gilchrist, who addressed Harvard Law School last week on the risks inherent in un-enforced US immigration laws, suggests certain elements from the Army's three major Airborne divisions be deployed into Mexico. Any incursions, however, should be swift and decisive, with surgical precision aimed directly at the geographic locations of the drug cartels and the persons running them.
"Mexican and American law enforcement officials know where most of the cartels are located and who most of the key criminal players are," Gilchrist claims.
"These criminal cartels," he said, "are well armed with military-grade weapons like .50 caliber sniper rifles, machine guns, automatic rifles, grenades, rocket launchers, and other lethal ordnance, including their favorite, an automatic weapon called the ‘metapolicias', or, ‘cop killers'. They are also well-funded by billions of dollars of income generated by both the drug and illegal alien trans-national exportation businesses the cartels operate."
Estimates of the amount of U.S. dollars going south into the coffers of Mexican criminal cartels vary. They range from a low of $10 billion to a high of $60 billion annually.
"Fighting the lawlessness in Mexico, which is ratably moving throughout the United States, is no longer a job for out-gunned, pistol-toting Mexican police officers," Gilchrist added. "That's like bringing a feather to a sword fight. The criminal environment in Mexico may soon demand the participation of U.S. troops who can effectively eliminate this ongoing, and growing, threat."
"I'm not talking about just any soldiers" Gilchrist added. "I'm talking about some tough U.S. Army Airborne brigades."
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| Border Violence:
Drug Cartels Tentacles Stretch Across U.S.
February 26, 2009 CNSNews.com
Washington (AP) - Mexican drug cartels are shipping more than massive quantities of drugs north of the border. Increasingly, they're also exporting bloody mayhem.
Seeking to stem the growing influence of the Sinaloa cartel within the United States, federal agents arrested more than 50 suspects in raids Tuesday night and Wednesday morning at different ends of the country. The raids capped a 21-month operation by the Drug Enforcement Administration that rounded up 755 suspects and seized more than $59 million in criminal proceeds.
"These cartels will be destroyed," Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday at a press conference announcing the arrests.
The overnight roundup by DEA and state and local police included arrests in California, Minnesota and the Maryland suburbs of Washington.
Holder called the cartels a threat to national security, adding, "They are lucrative, they are violent, and they are operated with stunning planning and precision."
The attorney general also suggested that re-instituting a U.S. ban on the sale of assault weapons would help reduce the bloodshed in Mexico, where last year 6,000 people were killed in drug-related violence.
Increasingly, U.S. law enforcement officials see cartel violence spill into the United States, often as far away as Phoenix and Atlanta.
As he discussed the problem, Holder spoke briefly in Spanish, pledging continued cooperation with Mexican authorities who have increasingly come under direct fire from the heavily armed drug gangs.
U.S. officials have a responsibility to make sure Mexican police "are not fighting substantial numbers of weapons, or fighting against AK-47s or other similar kinds of weapons that have been flowing to Mexico," Holder said.
DEA Acting Administrator Michele Leonhart said the raid showed the tentacles of the crime syndicate had spread far across the U.S. -- not just to major cities like Washington and Los Angeles, but to quiet, smaller communities like Stowe, Iowa, which the cartel allegedly used as a conduit to funnel drugs around the country.
Leonhart said the Sinaloa cartel has become one of the largest organized crime operations in the world.
"They've been hit hard, and their ability to spread death and destruction has been diminished" by the arrests, Leonhart said.
Last year, a sweeping corruption probe led to the arrest of a dozen high-ranking Mexican officials accused of collaborating with the Sinaloa group or its one-time ally, the Beltran Leyva gang. Those arrested include former drug czar Noe Ramirez, who is accused of taking $450,000 from Sinaloa.
The U.S. government has praised President Felipe Calderon's government for rooting out corruption at the top.
Yet over the many months the DEA's investigation proceeded, cartel violence on both sides of the border increased substantially.
The State Department issued a travel warning Friday, urging U.S. citizens traveling to Mexico to be aware of the increased threat of violence and kidnapping, especially along the border. The situation in Ciudad Juarez, which lies across the border from El Paso, is of special concern, the State Department cautioned.
It also issued an advisory on Spring Break in Mexico, where more than 100,000 U.S. citizens visit each year. The department warns of the increased violence along the border and advises revelers in Matamoros and Nuevo Progresso, popular destinations for spring breakers on South Padre Island, Texas, to "exercise common-sense precautions such as visiting only the well-traveled business and tourism areas of border towns during daylight and early-evening hours."
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Escalating violence on our Southern Border
Recent reports of the escalating violence on our Southern Border are terrifying, and the conditions are deteriorating by the day. Mexico's drug war claimed over 6,616 lives last year and these weren't all bad guys. Last week Police Commander Martin Castro was decapitated and his head was found in a cooler outside the police station. A calling card of the local drug cartel was enclosed.
Decapitation is now commonplace in Mexico-just last month a police chief and eight soldiers were found decapitated in the state of Guerrero. And to assure the young people know who is in charge these narco-terrorists are web casting the beheadings.
"There is a new and different violence in this war," said Victor Clark Alfaro, the founder of the Binational Center for Human Rights. "Each method is now more brutal, more extreme than the last. To cut off heads? That is now what they like. They are going to the edge of what is a possible for human being to do."
The situation is so severe that the U.S. Joint Forces Command in Norfolk, VA, has warned that the Mexican government could fail and that an unstable Mexico "could represent a homeland security problem of immense proportions to the Untied States." The report goes on, Mexico's "government, its politicians, police, and judicial infrastructure are all under sustained assault and pressure by criminal gangs and drug cartels."
According to the National Drug Threat Assessment for 2009 Mexican drug cartels now "control most of the U.S. Drug market" and they do so with an unimaginably sophisticated communication systems used to reach organizations in some 230 American cities.
General Barry McCaffrey, former drug Czar, describes the situation: "The outgunned Mexican law enforcement authorities face armed criminal attacks from platoon-sized units employing night vision goggles, electronic intercept collection, encrypted communications, fairly sophisticated information operations, sea-going submersibles, helicopters and modern transport aviation, automatic weapons, RPG's, Anti-Tank 66 mm rockets, mines and booby traps, heavy machine guns, 50 cal sniper rifles, massive use of military hand grenades, and the most modern models of 40mm grenade machine guns."
Heaven help us if they move their attention north and our military isn't there to meet them.
Our government admits the threat is eminent, but they are doing nothing. Our border must be secured now. Otherwise hordes of Mexican refugees-looking for homes, services and jobs are going to come pouring over our border in larger numbers than ever before. And along with them will be the violent enforcers of the drug cartels.
This is deadly serious. But you would never know that from the response of new Administration to the border.
Yesterday DHS announced they were going to allocate 50 million dollars to "mitigate the environmental impact of the U.S.-Mexico border fence." Are they joking? This is nothing but an old left wing stall tactic. Narco-terror is on our border and the best they can do is another environmental impact study! (This is how they held up the fence in California all those years.) These guys are no more serious than the crowd just tossed out.
I could spend pages condemning those whose job it was to secure our border anytime during the last 20 years but that won't keep America safe. It is our responsibility as citizens to do everything in our power to get the job done now.
We simply must turn up the heat on Congress and this Administration. Let them know Americans want the border secured NOW! Already Obama is expressing concern for getting re-elected and keeping his Congress Democratic. We must begin the calling and the writing again and we must find opportunities to personally confront our congressman and Senators.
In the meantime Tom Tancredo and I will be doing radio and TV to encourage others to join our team and so that our Army of Americans grows so large that Washington will be forced to act.
We need your help now. First get on the pones and begin calling the We need your help now. First get on the phones and begin calling the White House at (202)456-1111 and the Senate [Click Here for a list of phone numbers or you can call the capital switchboard toll free at 1 (866) 220-0044 and ask for your Congressman or Senator]
Secondly I must ask if you would please send a generous contribution to Team America!
Your best gift, for $35, $50, $100 or even more, is critically needed if Team America is to again lead the secure border/anti-amnesty coalition here in Washington. As a Team we stopped amnesty against all odds twice. Team America continues the amnesty watch even today but we must get our border secure before it is too late.
Thank you for all your help and support. I deeply hope I can count on
you to help us today! America is at risk and unless we act now we could lose her.
God bless you for all you do to keep this country strong.
Bay Buchanan - Team America PAC
501 Church Street | Suite 315 | Vienna | VA | 22180
(703) 255-9119| http://www.teamamericapac.org
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'Where's the fence?' Says only 200 miles of border barrier
January 24, 2009 By Jerome R. Corsi © 2009 WorldNetDaily
Construction on Mexican border (Courtesy American Border Patrol)
The Department of Homeland Security has built fewer than 200 miles of fence along the U.S. border with Mexico, not the 526 miles claimed by DHS and the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, according to Glenn Spencer, founder of the watchdog group American Border Patrol.
Spencer claims DHS is including in its 526 miles of fence – supposedly constructed according to the mandates of the Secure Fence Act – some 248 miles of "vehicle fence" that "isn't a fence at all and doesn't even stop vehicles."
"Deducting useless vehicle barriers and very old 10-foot fencing, not constructed under the Secure Border Initiative, from the 526-mile claim, we are left with about 200 miles that the Department of Homeland Security/Customs and Border Protection Secure Border Initiative actually constructed in accordance with the congressional mandate originally set forth in the Secure Fence Act of 2006," he said.
Customs and Border Patrol spokesman Lloyd Easterling disagrees.
"With the border fence, it isn't a question of 'one size fits all,'" Easterling told WND. "Double-layer fencing has been very effective, but equally effective is the vehicle and pedestrian fencing that we have installed in the more remote areas."
The Secure Fence Act of 2006, enacted Oct. 26, 2006, calls for 700 miles of double-reinforced fence to be built along the southern border with Mexico, from California to Texas.
WND reported that former Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., the original sponsor of the Secure Fence Act of 2006, opposed in January 2008 an amendment inserted by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, into the Fiscal Year 2008 DHS funding bill that left building any fence at all to the discretion of DHS, after consultation with local residents along the border.
Spencer has called for Congress to pass legislation reenacting the Secure Fence Act of 2006.
"The law should be modified to increase fence miles to 1,000 from 700 and include a provision for an independent agency to monitor the progress of the fence and the degree to which border security has been achieved," he told WND.
Easterling conceded that people can cut through the vehicular and pedestrian fences being constructed by DHS.
"Still, you've got to look hard at some of these remote areas," he argued. "We have a better chance of catching people in some parts of the desert. In some places, depending on the destination they choose, it's anywhere from 60 to 100 miles to walk out of that desert."
"Besides, with CBP air patrols and the Border Patrol agents along the border, we have vehicle fence that is effective," he stressed.
"Do people driving vehicles try to compromise the vehicle fences out there? Absolutely, they do. They try to cut, go over, go under – whatever they can do," he said. "But the fact is that even the vehicle fences we have constructed around Yuma have cut what was more than 2,700 drive-throughs in 2005, to today where drive-throughs are almost non-existent."
Spencer agrees that the fencing around Yuma, Ariz., is among the best on the border.
At the Jan. 15 press conference, Spencer presented evidence that double-layer fencing, placed along the border in places including Yuma can reduce apprehensions of illegal aliens by more than 97 percent.
Spencer also claims building a double-layer fence along the border would do much to stop drug-smuggling.
"The surge in the drug war in Mexico was precipitated by the construction of the border fencing and borders," he said, arguing that the inability to get drugs into the U.S. caused in-fighting among the Mexican drug cartels.
"There is a strong correlations between the miles of fencing installed between 2005 and 2009 and 1) drug-related deaths in Mexico; 2) eradication of cannabis plants north of the border; and 3) increases in the price of cocaine," he said. "We can stop drug smuggling if we want to."
Easterling told WND that DHS, as of this month, has constructed 601 miles of new fence, including vehicle and pedestrian fences, since the passage of the Secure Fence Act of 2006.
The DHS goal under the legislation is to build 670 miles of new fence.
Easterling conceded that two-thirds of the 1,993-mile U.S. border with Mexico has no fence whatsoever.
He told WND that resource limitations were a factor in determining how best to use available funds.
He also argued that some areas along the border do not necessarily require a fence, largely because natural barriers make the terrain difficult to pass.
"The type of fence we build depends on the area," he said. "In urban areas, we may place double-layer fences. In other areas we place vehicle fences or even pedestrian fences. But in remote areas, we also take into consideration that natural terrain, such as mountain ranges, may form natural barriers that prevent people from crossing into the United States easily.
"With the new Obama administration now in place, our goal is to finish the 670 miles and then to step back and evaluate what that fencing is doing for us," he said. "Then, of course, we'll make some new decisions from there, with the new administration. But so far, the 670 miles of completed fence remains our goal."
Spencer was concerned his press conference Jan. 15 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., received no mainstream media coverage despite press releases and phone calls to reporters.
"We rented the expensive Holeman Lounge at the Press Club and had a 60" plasma TV to show videos of the December 10 and January 6 aerial surveillance missions along the border, but no one came," Spencer told WND. "Not one member of the mainstream press or media showed up, not even the Washington Post, despite calls to reporters there who had previously covered us."
In an article entitled "Anatomy of a Blackout", published on his group's website, Spencer claims the story was blacked out because it was "probably too important to be told to the public."
Spencer agreed the press conference was held at a time prior to the Obama inauguration when the mainstream media attention was largely consumed with favorable coverage anticipating the in-coming administration.
In the presidential campaign of 2008, neither Obama nor Republican candidate John McCain made border security a major issue.
Obama has not yet specified the extent to which his administration plans to advance the Security and Prosperity of North America agenda articulated by President Bush with Mexico's then-President Vicente Fox and Canada's then-Prime Minister Paul Martin in 2005.
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Texas taxpayers spent $678 million on healthcare for illegal immigrants
Dec 14, 2008 By ANDREW CHAVEZ
Special to the Star-Telegram Healthcare for illegal immigrants cost the Texas government and local hospital districts $678 million in a year, according to a new study that state lawmakers hope will show the federal government how much Texas is spending in uncompensated care for illegal aliens.
The study, by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, estimates that $597 million of the total was spent by 94 public hospitals during fiscal 2005-06.
The remainder, about $81 million, went to the state’s contribution to emergency Medicaid, which pays for emergency medical care for things such as childbirth, and to the Texas Family Violence Program, which funds shelters, 24-hour hot lines, counseling and other related services. That figure is from fiscal 2006-07.
The figures are intended to lend support to future state requests for more federal funding to offset the costs.
All figures were estimates because of the limited information available. However, a bill proposed for the upcoming state legislative session would require agencies to report the cost of services provided to illegal immigrants.
The report, generated by the House’s 2007 appropriations bill, was criticized by a Fort Worth legislator as "immigrant bashing."
Rep. Lon Burnam, D-Fort Worth, said looking just at the cost of illegal immigrants doesn’t take into account the money they pump into the state.
"If you tell somebody to design a study and discover half the facts, you’ll get half the facts," Burnam said. "All you’ve done is look at one side of the ledger. People cost money no matter what their legal status is."
Burnam pointed to a 2006 report from the state comptroller’s office indicating that illegal immigrants produced $1.58 billion in state revenues and received $1.16 billion in state services.
But state Rep. Warren Chisum, R-Pampa, chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, said the new report puts a number on healthcare costs that the state cannot do anything about.
And an outspoken critic of illegal immigration, Rep. Leo Berman, R-Tyler, said he was glad that Congress is getting the report.
"I’d like to bill the United States government," he said, "and have them pay Texas for the cost of the benefits that they require us to provide to illegal aliens."
Tarrant County’s JPS Health Network wasn’t compensated for $133 million in care for illegal immigrants, according to the study.
A JPS spokeswoman said administrators plan to evaluate the report, which was provided by a reporter late Friday afternoon.
"We are reviewing the information and will begin work next week on evaluating the numbers," said Jamie Brown, a JPS spokeswoman.
Immigrant care at JPS has been hotly debated in past years. The hospital provides emergency care because federal law requires it to. But in 2004, the district moved to bar illegal immigrants from receiving discounted or free care at the health network’s nonemergency clinics, an option available to qualified Tarrant County residents.
The board revisited the issue in 2007 but has not voted on it.
This report includes material from the Houston Chronicle and from the Star-Telegram archives.
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1. At the current rate of legal & illegal Aliens entering this
country, Aug 2013 will be designated white history month.
2. One nation under God, that's the way it is and that's the way it should be, if you don't like it tough shit.
3. What's the difference between highway robbery or high gas prices. Answer: not a damn thing just government approved.
4. Bring back the rotary phone so we don't have to push one to proceed in English.
5. Before: made in America with pride. Now: made in China with poison and any other shit they can dump in the USA. Piss on China - Buy American.
6. The seat belt law is a giant money machine for townships. Ask lawmakers why 40 million kids can ride a school bus twice a day without seatbelts.
7. Mexican government telling us how to build our wall - bullshit. maybe Bush should hire John Wayne's grandson and round up all the wetbacks and send them south of the Rio Grande.
8. America, land of the free means: Welfare for illegals, free food, transportation, medical, housing, etc. US taxpayers pay for it all and get no benefits if needed.
9 The next reality show from grid irons - to leg irons, featuring: O J Simpson and Michael Vick doing time in the same cell sponsored by KY Jelly.
10. Michael Vick's sentence: A-should be in dog years or B-since he can't play anymore he should be just put down.
11. US Constitution in English, Bill of Rights in English, If you don't want to speak English please feel free to return to the shit hole of a country you left behind.
12. At a high rate of insanity this government is giving our country away, in spite of the generations and generations of Americans that fought for what we have.
13. Two presidential candidates each will blow over 125 million for a job that pays $400,000 a year. Must have a great dental plan.
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