Tuesday, August 31, 2010

California governor hopeful Nightingale will embark on a walk about of sorts

California gubernatorial candidate, Chelene Nightingale, an American Constitution Independent, will walk from Fresno to Sacramento in an effort to bring attention to the unemployment and water crisis in the Central Valley region, as well as meet the people of California along the way who are enduring difficult times.

The Nightingale campaign will also be joined by supporters during the walk and will attend a kick-off rally on September 3rd at Koligian Park, in Fresno. The rally will begin at noon on Friday.

“I am looking forward to hearing from Californian’s and learn what they are worried about as we endure a long recession,” Nightingale said. “It’s going to be a long eight days, but the voters are worth it.”
The 189.2 mile walk to the State Capitol will continue for 8 days ending on Friday, September 10th in Sacramento at 2:00p.m.

The Nightingale for Governor Campaign intends to collect and deliver hardship letters from California voters to the state legislatures when the walk finishes.

The California walking destinations include Madera, Chowchilla, Merced, Turlock, Ripon, Lodi, and Elk Grove. The culmination of the 8-day walk will end every day with a rally. The expected arrival times for the daily rallies will be 7:00 p.m. Nightingale says she would like to meet as many Californians as possible during the meet and greet walk.

The walk will allow the third- party candidate to talk with voters and get them involved in California’s voting process. Currently, the state is not too friendly or inclusive of third-party candidates.

According to the California Secretary of State website, Mrs. Nightingale won a little over 58 percent of the American Independent party vote securing her place on the November midterm election ballot.

Nightingale also captured the most votes by parties voting outside the quasi-traditional Democrat or Republican organizations.

Nightingale knows that she capable of attracting a crowd with her Conservative message, and is disappointed that she hasn’t been invited to any of the debates that GOP Gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman and Democrat Jerry Brown have agreed to attend, specifically the one on September 28 at U.C. Davis.

“All candidates are supposed to be created free and equal at state institutions which University of California at Davis is, but my campaign is not giving up hope and we remain optimistic the debate organizers will change their minds and include us,” Nightingale explained.

When asked about the constant battle with establishment candidates, Nightingale laughs and says “the voters of California are the ones who should be outraged.”

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/guns-fuel-drug-cartels-mexico

Illicit guns from other countries- not America- fuel drug cartels in Mexico

The battle for Mexico’s heart and soul has risen to the highest levels- not only is the country suffering from an explosive drug cartel battle, but Mexico’s very existence is embroiled in a narco-state clash.

The soul of a country lies within its citizenry and right now Mexico is losing the mêlée to the drug cartels. President Felipe Calderon has embarked on a noble quest and has promised to dethrone the powerful drug cartels from Mexico, yet in the past three years it’s the citizens who have lost 28,000 lives (and counting) to earth-shattering barbaric violence, like beheadings, perpetrated by mafia-type drug gangs.

Gone are the days of Poncho Villa as these thugs in Mexico are gaining the upper hand. They are replacing cartel leaders who have been killed or captured by the government with a more treacherous, vicious brand of brutality. The new drug cartel leaders must prove they mean business by exacting atrocious acts to garner fear and loyalty within Mexico’s borders.

The root of this evil is money – billions are made each year in Mexico from the drug trade. In an effort to capture those billions merciless drug cartels fight (with a plethora of military-grade weapons) to establish the shrinking smuggling routes into the heart of America.

The end result is a happy American drug consumer. Currently, America is home to more than Disneyland, it provides somewhere between 75 to 80 percent of the world’s drug consumption. Something Walt would not be proud of.

As with any national epidemic a message of propaganda must circulate to reveal the hero and villain. In this case the American politician and main stream media outlets have chosen guns as the villain. By spinning the web that guns are the root and American gun manufactures supply 90 percent of the weaponry to Mexican cartels; the U.S. is hit with a double whammy- a consumer and blame for the never-ending violence.

The media got it halfway right, America is the largest consumer of drugs and the cartels wouldn’t be in business if there wasn’t a demand for narcotics, but the guns are not coming from America.

In fact, a new paper out (Spring 2010) from George Mason’s School of Public Policy dispels this myth once and for all.

According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) only 17 percent of the guns recovered by Mexican authorities are traceable to the United States a far cry from the 90 percent perpetuated by the MSM. It is worth pointing out that the Mexican government does a good job photographing the drugs, money and weapons it seizes and releases them to the public.

Below is a recent seizure slideshow, (about a month old) near the Mexico/Arizona border and the pictures speak volumes about the arsenal drug cartels are using.

“The guns are from China, South America, Russia and the USA. However the firearms from the USA were sent via operation 'Blue Lantern' under the Clinton administration. If I recall correctly America gave Mexico about $6 billion worth of guns, ammo, night vision, grenades, and (my favorite) training,” said Marc Halcon a leading gun industry proprietor and federally-recognized advanced law-enforcement training expert.

“The rifles shown in the slideshow are from China (most likely) or eastern block nations. They have never been manufactured in the USA. The pistols ‘may’ have been manufactured in the USA, but I must point out that many countries make a clone of the same pistol so it is hard to say for sure,” he explained.

In Halcon’s opinion the Mexican government should be more cooperative with the BATF and U.S. officials. “As we pursue the true source of the firearms in question and since we apparently can't stop the flow of illegals into our country; how are we expected to stop the flow of firearms without the assistance from the Mexican government?”

Mexico’s President lashes out at America

Last week Mexican President Calderon took a direct shot at the U.S. for providing the guns that fuel the drug war.

“The American weapons industry is a voracious and vicious industry they create. It’s clear to me that they create a conflict in a poor country in Africa just to sell weapons. In the same way they are making money on the situation in Mexico.” He goes on to say America has not changed its yearly budget in its own battle with drug consumption.

Upon closer look at this statement it appears Mexico’s president is continuing the government propaganda that America is providing the majority of the weapons the cartels are using- again a falsehood that is repeated until many believe it to be fact.

“To fully understand what he is saying you only need to listen to one sentence where he states ‘the budget for the war on drugs has not changed,’” Halcon explains. “Essentially he is asking for the U.S. to give Mexico (him) money. This is a typical third-world shakedown in my opinion.”

Halcon continues to add that “the U.S. government has supplied billions of dollars in firearms, ammunition, training, etc to the Mexico. The real issue facing Americans is that between 120 and 150 of the Mexican military troops defect to the dark side every month. When they leave they are taking their equipment, guns and training with them.”

So far under President Calderon’s watch the government has confiscated more than 70,000 weapons from the drug cartels.

Propaganda spoken by U.S politicians and main stream media

Chris Cox, a spokesman for the National Rifle Association, blames the main stream media and uninformed politicians in the U.S. for misrepresenting where Mexican drug cartel weapons originate. “Reporter after politician after news anchor just disregards the truth on this,” Cox contends. “The numbers are intentionally used to weaken the Second Amendment.”

American talking heads are not the only members spouting incorrect numbers. Auturo Sarukhan, the Mexican ambassador to the U.S., claims Mexico seizes about 2,000 guns a day from America. However that number adds up to 730,000 a year. The ambassador misses the real number by 700,000. The real number is 30,000 for all of 2007/08, according to the Mexican attorney general's office.

Here is what the political leaders, federal agency heads and main stream media spokespeople are saying about the war next door. The following is a list of those who repeated that 90 percent of drug cartel guns come from America;

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton repeated it to reporters on a flight to Mexico City; CBS anchorman Bob Schieffer referred to the falsehood while interviewing President Obama; Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) said 90 percent of the guns are used to kill judges, police officers and mayors at a Senate hearing; William Hoover, assistant director for field operations of ATF, testified to Congress that "there is more than enough evidence to indicate that over 90 percent of the firearms that have either been recovered in, or interdicted in transport to Mexico, originated from various sources within the United States."

Apparently the ATF did not send out an intra-agency memo articulating that the 90 percent of traced weapons from America and that the majority of the firearms seized are clearly not even made or sold in the United States.

"Not every weapon seized in Mexico has a serial number on it that would make it traceable, and the U.S. effort to trace weapons really only extends to weapons that have been in the U.S. market," Matt Allen, special agent of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) reported.

Furthermore Mexican officials seized more than 30,000 guns in 2007/2008, but only submitted about 11,000 to ATF for tracing. Of the 6,000 of those traced, only 5,114 were traced to US sources. That number represents 90 percent of the 6,000 traced, but represents only 17 percent of all seizures, so again, the 90 percent number is supported by empirical evidence, but is not representative of the truth that only 5,115 of the 30,000 weapons seized were traced to US sources.” The true percentage of 17 percent does not present such a compelling argument for clamping down on American gun manufacturing as does the distorted 90 percent number does.

Some weapons, firearm dealers say, are legitimately shipped to Mexico, by Colt, from the United States. These sales are approved by the U.S. government for use by the Mexican military. Clearly these guns end up in Mexico and are not smuggled in across the river.

Firearm experts contend the remainder of the weapons that find their way into the ruthless cartels come from a variety of places

The black market in Mexico is a virtual arms variety store, with grenades from South Korea, AK-47s from China, and shoulder-fired rocket launchers from Spain, Israel and former Soviet bloc manufacturers.

Another large source is the Russian crime syndicates. In fact, Interpol claims Russian Mafia are actively trafficking drugs and arms into Mexico.

And don’t forget South America. The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) established a clandestine arms smuggling and drug trafficking partnership with Mexican cartels after Pablo Escobar’s demise left a vacuum of weapons and drug addiction.

According to a 2006 Amnesty International Report, China provided arms to countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Of these weapons Chinese assault firearms and Korean explosives have been recovered in Mexico’s war on cartels.

Another major contributor is the Mexican military itself as more than 150,000 soldiers have deserted to the cartels in the last six years, according to Mexican Congressman Robert Badillo. Most deserters take their uniforms and weapons with them, including the standard issue M-16 assault rifles.

The Mexican government reports that it has seized 2,239 grenades in the last two years, but the grenades and the rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) confiscated are not available in U.S. gun shops. The grenades used in an attack on the U.S. Consulate in Monterrey and a TV station in January came from South Korea.

Hilary Clinton accepts responsibility for Americans

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, on a recent visit to Mexico, said that America's inability to prevent weapons being smuggled across the border is causing the deaths of Mexican police officers, soldiers and civilians.

"I feel very strongly we have a co-responsibility," Clinton told reporters on her Mexico City trip a day after the Obama administration implied it would send more money, technology and manpower to secure the border and assist Mexico battle the drug cartels.

"Our insatiable demand for illegal drugs fuels the drug trade," she said. "Our inability to prevent weapons from being illegally smuggled across the border to arm these criminals causes the deaths of police officers, soldiers and civilians."

Mexico appreciated Clinton’s admission of U.S. responsibility regarding the war on drugs.

"We want to address together the challenges that we are facing," Foreign Minister for Mexico Patricia Espinosa said.

That being said, Mexico says it will never allow U.S. troops to operate inside the country and the fact that U.S. is deploying National Guard troops to the border is causing anxiety.

"It is seen as a very delicate issue," said Espinosa.

Under former President Bill Clinton’s administration, an effort was also made to fight the drug cartels. It was called “Operation Blue Lantern.” In the mid 1990s, Clinton spent millions of dollars a year to curb the cartels.

In February of 1997, the Clinton Administration announced the Mexican government was a “full ally” in the war on drugs. In doing so Clinton’s Drug Czar, Army General Barry McCaffrey, described Mexican General Jesus Gutierrez Rebollo, who led the Mexican National Institute to Combat Drugs (INCD) as a “man of absolute unquestioned character.”

Shortly after McCaffrey’s announcement, Rebollo was arrested for taking bribes from one of the largest drug cartels in Mexico and he had been present at numerous secret meetings involving the White House, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

The blame game continues in Mexico

Taking exception to President Calderon’s direct shot at the U.S. government and U.S. gun manufactures for promoting the drug war in Mexico is recently retired ICE agent John Sakelarides.

"In a transparent attempt to shift the blame from Mexico to the United States for cross border incursions to include the flow of drugs, weapons, humans and money, President Felipe Calderon is claiming the guns being used by the cartels are coming from the United States. As such, he is accusing the United States of interfering in Mexican internal affairs by accusing the U.S. is somehow allowing the cartels to send guns from the U.S. to Mexico arming the cartels.”

“Excuse me? Let me get this straight- President Calderon. Your countrymen are smuggling not only narcotics, but human beings into this country at an alarming rate, in violation of America’s territorial sovereignty, and your countrymen who run the cartels, are smuggling guns into your country, and somehow this is our fault? Your government, and those before yours, have repeatedly, knowingly, intentionally and maliciously, interfered in the internal affairs of the United States. So much so, Mexican citizens, both legal and illegal alike, who are not U.S. citizens are voting in American elections- violating U.S. laws.”

“You support the flow of illegal aliens and narcotics into the United States, either tacitly or openly. You deny us our sovereign right to control our borders and to enforce our laws, claiming that doing so is somehow racist. However, you certainly support the flow of American dollars into Mexico in the form or remittances. Please, have the decency to not lecture America about how to run our country given the fact that Mexico is now a defacto narco-state.”

“Perhaps this behavior is acceptable in Mexico. But this kind of anarchy will not be tolerated in America. Mexico is like the neighbor who complains about his neighbor's children playing in their yard, while he allows his children to run amok in the neighborhood. You sir, are a hypocrite."

The mounting problems the Mexican government and President Calderon are having in controlling the drug cartels, lawlessness, and escalating violence is forcing Mexico to look elsewhere for blame, but little of the blame rests with the U.S. government, but more directly with the insatiable appetite Americans seem to have for Mexico’s “recreational drugs.”

“Recreational drugs” are killing thousands (more than 28,000 in three years) of Mexicans, destroying the Mexican economy, and inhibiting the government’s ability to govern has forced President Calderon’s hand to explore the legalization of illegal drugs as a distinct possibly. This concept was immediately acclaimed by former Mexican President Vicente Fox as a good solution to the drug cartel lawlessness.
The collapse of the Mexican government would have disastrous effects on the US, including the unabated flow of drugs through Mexico to the US and an influx of illegal immigrants in numbers never even imagined.

As this reporter has previously written, what happens in Mexico matters.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/obama-administration-penalizes-employer-gives-illegal-workers-a-pass
Slideshow: An example of weapons captured along the Arizona/Mexico border

Monday, August 30, 2010

Pressure mounts for DHS as “no confidence” votes continue and border violence grows

Mounting pressure from rank-and-file agents at ICE and Border Patrol has led to another “no confidence’ vote over the weekend from the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO).

Recently the unions that represent Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Border Patrol agents took part in a vote that placed “no confidence” in management leaders of Department of Homeland Security.

The new vote from NAFBPO gives a strong case against DHS and their continued inadequacies in border enforcement. “We strongly believe that with illegal aliens entrenched in every single state of our nation, interior enforcement of our immigration laws is woefully lacking,” said G. Alan Ferguson, Executive Assistant to the Chairman of NAFBPO.

NAFBPO believes the hardworking men and women within ICE and Border Patrol are doing their level best to enforce illegal immigration laws, but it is management’s unwillingness to put forth policies that will slow or deter illegals from crossing the United States border looking for work.

“NAFBPO is adamant there are two primary tasks that must be accomplished to improve our system for legal immigration while eliminating the blight of illegal immigration. These are a secured border and strong interior enforcement,” Ferguson said. “NAFBPO’s collective experience in dealing with border and immigration matters as well as an institutional knowledge dating back over a half century leads us to emphatically state that without these two tasks being implemented successfully, immigration control will never be possible.”

Buck Brandemuehl, retired Chief of the Border Patrol and a founder of NAFBPO said, “The U.S. has reached a critical crossroads in dealing with the illegal alien problem. This problem must be addressed now, as it is strangling our democracy and threatening our national security.”

America needs to realize the importance of addressing the illegal immigration issue and as such NAFBPO says they will put forth a plan for DHS management to review when they finally begin the arduous task of tackling comprehensive immigration reform.

“We will provide a common sense solution to illegal immigration and return to the rule of law,” Ferguson said.

NAFBPO was founded in 2006 by a group of retired Border Patrol Chiefs and agents in order to use their collective knowledge and experience to educate America to the realities of border and immigration issues, while actively working towards eliminating amnesty and provide effective immigration reform solutions.

“We are an organization advocating for increased homeland security through a controlled border and effective immigration enforcement policies,” Ferguson concluded.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/ice-skirts-congress-by-changing-policy-and-halting-deportations

Friday, August 27, 2010

ICE skirts Congress by changing policy and halting deportations

ICE skirts immigration law and begins to release illegal immigrants who have already been arrested and are waiting to be deported.

A memo from released yesterday by John Morton of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), included a new policy change that could affect thousands awaiting deportation. Morton signed a memo that went out to agencies across the country stating any illegal immigrants who have been charged with deportation have their cases reviewed and be released or absolved of any legal issues with the federal government if they have not committed any serious crime.

However, there is a catch. The suspected illegal immigrants must be able to prove they are taking care of necessary paperwork with ICE and have not committed a felony crime.

The memo read in part; “This memorandum establishes ICE policy for the handling of removal proceedings before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) involving applications or petitions filed by, or on behalf of, aliens in removal proceedings. This policy outlines a framework for ICE to request expedited adjudication of an application or petition for an alien in removal proceedings that is pending before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services if the approval of such an application or petition would provide and immediate basis for relief to the alien. The policy will allow ICE and EOIR to address a major inefficiency in present practice and thereby avoid unnecessary delay and expenditure of resources.” Read the entire memo; http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/pdf/us/27immig_memo.pdf

This new policy at ICE comes as a major blow to agents who have already given ICE’s leader, Morton a vote of no confidence.

“It’s dispiriting for federal agents,” says Mark Krikorian of Center for Immigration Studies a Washington D.C. think tank.

While the majority of American’s don’t want amnesty given to those who entered the country illegally and have committed crimes just by crossing the border or overstaying visas the proverbial golden ticket.

Many contend management at ICE and the Obama White House has already begun a back-door amnesty process bypassing Congress.

“Is it an end run around Congress?” Krikorian asked. “In an informal sense, yes. This is a policy decision that is trying to make an end run around Congress. They are saying lets abuse our existing authority to create a defacto amnesty.”

Lamar Smith of Texas, ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee and a member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, told The Washington Times that the Obama administration is "simply not serious about enforcing all of our immigration laws."

However, ICE management officials claim the new policy outlined in the memo will reduce a burgeoning court- case backlog and free up agents to focus on those in the country illegally who are involved with serious criminal matters.

Whichever way you look at it, the new ICE policy will grant thousands of illegal immigrants slated for deportation a stay- or in layman terms a chance for amnesty.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/no-confidence-votes-become-a-pattern-at-ice-and-border-patrol

Thursday, August 26, 2010

California Governor hopeful Brown slams Whitman in San Diego

California Governor hopeful Jerry Brown slammed his GOP opponent Meg Whitman at a Local UFCW Union 135 member meeting in San Diego. Brown is vying for the state’s top post as a retread. (He served as California’s governor from 1975 to 1983)

Showing up 15 minutes late, Brown received a standing ovation from union employees looking to generate some excitement for the upcoming November election. Brown spoke with his teleprompter in place and took to bashing GOP candidate Whitman right off the bat.

“Whitman’s plans are B.S. and she’ll double the deficit with tax cuts,” Brown said about Whitman’s plan to give Californians $17 billion in tax credits. “California is a rich state…. We need to pull together and make the state great again.”

During the 10- minute pep rally Brown added some levity by reminding the all-union audience that he has already run for president three times and “I’ve got it out of my system. I can level with you this time,” he said about his intentions and age.

Brown pointed out that Whitman plays a great blame game and can offer California no experience, while Democratic candidates still have the ability to pull together and beat Whitman who is spending record amounts of cash to become California’s first female governor.

“This (running for governor) is like collective bargaining, we pull together,” Brown said about running against a candidate who has endless amounts of money.

The 30-year career politician clearly took aim at Whitman’s tremendous wealth. As one of the founders of eBay, Whitman secured large stock options while building the internet-resale business from the bottom up.

While Brown offered no specific plans on how he would close the state’s $20 billion shortfall he did acknowledge he would continue to push for 500,000 new “green jobs” and hold the schools to a higher standard.

California’s current Attorney General, Brown animatedly stated that “some people aren’t 10,000 times better than other people.” He went on to explain that as union workers, they worked just as hard as the so-called rich people and deserved to make a fair wage for their time.

Looking forward Brown said things could still get much worse and “they will if the other side (Republicans) get into office.”

However, in California the state is managed heavily by Democrats as they control both assembly and senate with large majorities. The current Governor, Schwarzenegger, ran as a Republican, but governed like a Democrat.

Brown finished the speech by explaining the evils of capitalism. “We have to protect California from the ravages of predatory capitalism. That’s what it is, they’re (GOP) going to rip you off if you don’t hit back and vote Democrat for the governor.”

Brown received a standing ovation as he left the room.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/mexico-a-narco-state-drugs-guns-and-cash-fuel-economy

72 immigrants murdered by cartels just south of U.S. border

Ruthless Zeta cartel henchmen are allegedly the perpetrators of murdering 72 migrants trying to find work inside the United States; sadly the immigrants fell 100 miles short of their goal and became the latest victims of the warring Mexican drug cartels.

There were 58 men and 14 women murdered by the Zetas. Somehow one migrant managed to live and was able to warn Mexican authorities after the vicious attack.

This incident appears to be the worst killing in the notorious cartel world and creates another perilous obstacle for migrants to consider as they make the long trek into America.

The Associated Press reported, “The Ecuadorean migrant staggered to the checkpoint on Tuesday, with a bullet wound in his neck. He told the marines he had just escaped from gunmen at a ranch in San Fernando, a town in the northern state of Tamaulipas about 100 miles from Brownsville, Texas.”

The migrant also told Mexican authorities the murderers identified themselves as Zetas, and said the other migrants were from Brazil, Ecuador, El Salvador and Honduras.

At the gruesome scene authorities found 21 assault rifles, shotguns and detained a minor, who may have been a part of the Zeta cartel.

Authorities said the victims were most likely part of a ransom gone wrong scheme as warring cartels continue to expand their money making possibilities in Mexico. Recently these cartel gangs began to recruit migrants as foot soldiers to enter the U.S. with a passel of drugs in tow.

The National Human Rights Commission reported in a recent study that 1,600 migrants are being kidnapped in Mexico every month. However, the number is feared much higher as this report took statistics from September 2008 to February 2009.

The brutal violence along the U.S./Mexico has exploded this year when the Zetas broke with their ex-Gulf cartel employer emerging as the most violent cartel to date.

This is the third time Mexican officials have found mass graves. However, in the other to cases, authorities believe the victims were dumped at different times rather than just one mass killing spree.
In May of this year 55 bodies were found in an abandoned mine near Taxco, near a popular tourist spot in the outskirts of Mexico City.

As a result of this growing violence the U.S. Department of State has issued a stern travel warning to American citizens wanting to visit Mexico.

“U.S. citizens traveling to and living in Mexico are warned about the security situation in Mexico. The authorized departure of family members of U.S. government personnel from U.S. Consulates in the northern Mexico border cities of Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez, Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey and Matamoros remains in place. This Travel Warning supersedes the Travel Warning for Mexico dated May 6, 2010 to note the extension of authorized departure and to update guidance on security conditions and crime. The situation in northern Mexico remains fluid; the location and timing of future armed engagements cannot be predicted. U.S. citizens are urged to exercise extreme caution when traveling throughout the region, particularly in those areas specifically mentioned in this Travel Warning,” the statement read.

The statement from the U.S. government does not come as good news for Mexico as they have seen a sharp decline in tourist dollars. Residents in Mexico believe the decline in visitors has fueled more crime.

Mexico’s brush with drugs is nothing new, online news website Politico posted a blog about the history of the drug violence and America’s attempt to assist Mexico in its ongoing drug cartel hostility. “President George W. Bush and Mexico’s President Felipe Calderon agreed, in 2007, to a three-year, $1.6-billion security cooperation program known as the Mérida Initiative. It was Washington’s biggest security agreement with Mexico, and created a framework through which both the U.S. and Mexican governments could show their commitment — through dollars and actions — to defeat the cartel threat,” the blog read.

Nevertheless, Mexican President Calderon has criticized American’s commitment to the war on drugs and challenged the U.S. to increase their spending under the Mérida Initiative. In fact a U.S. report shows that less than 20 percent of the Mérida Initiative $1.6 billion has been dispersed to assist Mexico in their fight against the drug cartels.

With the bodies piling up south of the border, America’s lack of interest in curtailing the drug cartels and bitter partisan politics in the U.S., it doesn’t appear Mexico will see any relief from the violence and brutality the cartels have levied against Mexican government and citizens. It appears a narco-state status is on the horizon for Mexico and unless a centralized government is able to root out the corruption and provide a viable economic job market America’s southern neighbor will provide more heartache and more violence.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/warlords-and-taliban-fighters-earn-money-from-u-s-the-form-of-protection

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mexico - a narco-state - drugs, gun and cash fuel economy

The lack of main stream media curiosity about the narco-state war being waged in Mexico is unbelievable. More people are dying in Mexico than the war in Afghanistan as the Mexican government wages a daily battle with drug cartels for its sovereignty.

Mexico’s state of lawlessness should be of particular concern to Americans because it’s painfully clear that the porous border is supplanting free trade with drugs, money and weapons for both countries.

Recently America has stepped up its security measures on some fronts but clearly there is still much more work to be done. Much of the billion-dollar drug profits are funding corruption as well as the murders of politicians, judges, lawyers, police, soldiers and thousands of Mexican nationals.

Mexico is on the verge of a serious inflection point and clearly they are under siege from the drug cartels. There is a rapid disintegration of security even in upscale neighborhoods once thought to be secure. Kidnappings and murders are commonplace and the Mexican leadership still has no answer. Since Mexican President Felipe Calderon began his “war on drugs” more than 28,000 people have lost their lives.

And the brutal nature of the violence is spilling into the U.S. at alarming rates. On top of that the majority of the Mexican drug cartels operate freely in every major city within the United States. In the border cities of Juarez, Laredo, and Brownsville, residents complain about gunfire on a regular basis. The drug cartel’s motto of "silver or lead" is a major factor of intimidation that has become an everyday reality. The ability to induce a legitimate government to either accept the silver or risk the bullets leaves Mexico’s citizens powerless in the fight to rid the country of a multi-billion dollar drug industry.

The drug cartels should not to be tolerated; they are intent on the exploitation of drugs, human trafficking and ultimately state control. The American public must understand that the instability in Mexico directly impacts the U.S. and the lack of national security along the southern border presents a larger threat than anything happening in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Speaking of the Middle East wars, the cartels have now introduced Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) to their weapons package and have began to target police as well as federal troops with these terrorist tools of the trade.

At a recent roundtable discussion President Calderon discussed the possibility of legalizing illegal drugs in Mexico and it wasn’t long before former Mexican President Vicente Fox jumped on the bandwagon and called for the legalization of all drugs as a method to end the escalating violence. The impact on the U.S. would be the free and uninhibited movement of illegal drugs across Mexico through the U.S. ports of entry.

What’s more amazing is the President Calderon released a statement today admitting there will be more violence in the coming months. “I don’t rule out that there might be more bouts of violence we’re witnessing and what’s more, the victory we are seeking and will gain is unthinkable without more violence,” he said in a statement.

So far the Mexican government has been slow or unable to freeze cartel bank accounts or even seize the banks that "launder" billions in drug money. Many acknowledge it should be relatively easy to identify the banks providing cover for the murderous cartels as Mexico only has a GDP worth $1.465 trillion.

Bribing federal officials remains a key to the cartel’s success. All levels of government including mayors, political candidates, police, military, and high ranking politicians are extorted or bribed by the drug cartels.

The rule of law in any country is dependent upon the integrity of the system. When the integrity is compromised the entire foundation of the republic begins its inexorable decay until it collapses. Such is the case with Mexico.

The drug war is not fiction; it’s a reality that Mexico is sliding toward a Narco-State and the legalization of illicit drugs will only push that country into further civil unrest. One only needs to look at the drug war waged by the Columbian cartels under the rule of Pablo Escobar in the early 1990s for proof narco-states exist.

Mexico is not alone in the drug frenzy, American’s insatiable appetite for "harmless, recreational" illegal drugs ensures that billions of dollars exchange hands and cement violence in both countries.

Think about the tens of thousands of people who have been tortured, murdered, enslaved, or trafficked so American drug users can get high. Think of the people in Mexico who live in constant fear everyday from bombings, beheadings, kidnappings and brutality the cartel-business plan provides. The attitude or argument that many liberal-minded people invoke that "recreational" drugs are not hurting anybody need only look at the 28,000 deaths our neighbor to the south has suffered in the last four years.

Mexican citizens face gruesome headlines everyday like; “Disappearance of Mayor confirmed (a few days later he was found tortured and murdered); Cuidad Juarez records new violence record (1,852 people murdered in first half of 2010).

Nuevo Leon, is a northern state where both Monterrey and Santiago upscale communities are located, unfortunately they have seen a sharp increase in crime due to the fact that the most violent drug cartel, Los Zetas, moved into the region. For Mexico the safe zones are rapidly disappearing.

As a result, transnational citizens are purchasing U.S. property along the southern border to insure safe passage of drugs into the American market, making billions and sending satchels of money back to Mexico where the country continues to teeter on the brink of poverty and all out war.

During this time of incredible violence President Calderon is blaming America for not increasing its drug interdiction budget-this amounts to a typical third world shake down for U.S. money.

Mexico exports millions of tons of cocaine, marijuana and meth across, under and around its border with the U.S. and then Mexican citizens send billions of dollars per year in illegal currency via wire transfers from the U.S. to Mexico to further exploit its citizens.

Now leadership in Mexico wants America to stop the flow of weapons and money that flows south. Currently the average wait to enter the U.S. via car from Mexico is well over an hour and for those heading south into Mexico it’s 5 minutes at best. Mexico doesn’t provide much border security at the ports of entry as well as the fence structures are provided and maintained by the U.S.

There is no question our neighbor to the south is literally fighting for its life, but it’s up to Mexico to control its drug cartel problem. Equally important is the U.S. federal government’s responsibility to secure the nation’s borders and stop the northward flow of illegal drugs.

In order to move forward the Mexican government needs to offer more economic security to its citizens so they can turn their backs on the drug pushers and move towards a strong trade partnership similar to the one America enjoys with Canada our neighbor to the north.

The Mexican cartel wars cannot be won without a concerted effort by both Mexico and the U.S. The myth that these illegal drugs are “recreational” and harmless must be confronted as forcefully as possible by America through awareness and enforcement.

The U.S. must close the border and force individuals and cargoes to pass through inspection sites at ports-of-entry. Mexico must guard its own ports-of-entry to reduce the flow of weapons and cash into Mexico.

Cash is king for a reason, it provides access and enforcement. Mexico must seize laundered money being sanitized for entry back into the legitimate marketplace. Without cash the cartels cannot operate, but conversely, with the volumes of cash being generated, it is impossible to hide the hundreds of billions moving through Mexican banks each year.

Perhaps Mexico could declare martial law for a few years to root-out the cartels and destroy them. The alternative of legalizing these drugs by Mexico would result in catastrophic results for America and would immediately expand the reach of the cartels into the U.S. A failure to act and to act in a rigorous effort will merely force the cartels into new sanctuaries in Central and South America and continue to expand the lure of human traffickers into the North.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/obama-administration-penalizes-employer-gives-illegal-workers-a-pass

Monday, August 23, 2010

Obama administration penalizes employer, gives illegal workers a pass

New illegal immigration numbers reveal that the Obama administration is targeting employers who hire illegal immigrants with substantial fines while letting the illegal employees walk out the door, free to get a job elsewhere.

Opponents contend that many of these illegal immigrants use fraudulent or stolen identification to procure jobs that could be going to legal residents or U.S. citizens.

New numbers from the Department of Homeland Security indicates in FY2007 former President George W. Bush arrested 4,077 illegals during a raid of 863 employers and in FY2008 the Bush White House arrested 5,184 illegal immigrants while targeting 1,103 businesses.

Compare those numbers to President Obama and there is a big difference. In FY 2009 410 businesses were successfully raided and 1,644 illegal immigrants arrested and so far FY 2010 has seen 181 businesses raided and only 603 illegal immigrants taken into custody.

Critics say many of these illegal immigrants commit a couple of crimes by illegally entering the country as well as obtaining a job using fraudulent identification and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) should be arresting all parties involved or face another magnet for illegal immigrants to obtain employment.

John Morton, ICE’s top dog has already come under fire for implementing a "catch and release" policy, where ICE agents catch removable illegal immigrants through local arrests, and then releases all except the serious offenders from custody.

“Making matters worse, ICE agents are now defaulting to the most time-consuming deportation process – even obviously removable aliens are routinely dumped on the overloaded immigration court dockets to await hearings before an immigration judge – instead of using the perfectly legal and more efficient administrative procedures available to them to remove an illegal alien,” according to Center for Immigration Studies.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/national-guard-begins-to-arrive-along-southern-border

Friday, August 20, 2010

National Guard begins to arrive along southern border

The troops have arrived. The Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger announced 224 National Guard troops have reported for duty along the California/Mexico border and will assist Border Patrol in the San Diego region.

Many critics say the 1,200 National Guard troops sent to four southern states' 2,000 miles zigzagging U.S./Mexico border is completely inadequate for a number of reasons. First, the National Guard will not be making any arrests and will be slotted with Border Patrol agents off the front lines acting more like “spotters,” operate as a visible deterrent and assist with additional eyes and ears in the field, a National Guard spokeswoman said.

Not only will the Guard members be hanging in the background, but many will be taken from their families and real-world jobs. This isn’t the first time a president has sent troops to protect the porous borders. President Bush sent troops to the border in 2006-2008 during the country’s last attempt to fix the immigration laws.

The California Governator cautioned lawmakers that this temporary fix should not be seen as an alternative to comprehensive immigration reform.

“We must find a permanent solution to our broken immigration system,” Schwarzenegger said. “We need the federal government to step up with even more manpower and funding, and I will continue to push President Obama and Congress for action.”

"Our soldiers and airmen are true action heroes who respond to disasters at home and overseas. Today, our National Guard has been called to help secure the border and protect the safety of the American people, and I am proud that we are the first state to have our troops trained and operational for this mission," Schwarzenegger said.

In an effort to appear tough on border issues for the upcoming midterms the Obama administration has stepped up its commitment to border security, something Republicans fiercely want in order to cooperate with any comprehensive immigration reform plans.

A $600 million border security bill passed through Congress last week and politicians are hoping this money will be enough to address the country’s burgeoning illegal immigration problem and secure the borders from the war on drugs that Mexico is fighting that has led to more than 28,000 deaths in the past couple years.

But so far Republicans are complaining that much more needs to be done at the border before any talks of immigration reform begin. The mood in the country also seems to be on the side of securing the borders, deporting all criminal aliens and adding many provisions before illegal immigrants are put on a pathway to citizenship.

There hasn’t been any timetable for withdrawal of National Guard along the border and the governor told reporters that they will stay as long as necessary and are trained to take a more active role if need be.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/warlords-and-taliban-fighters-earn-money-from-u-s-the-form-of-protection

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Warlords and Taliban fighters earn money from U.S. in the form of protection

A new report titled “Warlord, Inc., Extortion and Corruption along the U.S. Supply Chain in Afghanistan” was published by Congressman John Tierney (D-MA) in June. The report details the millions of dollars spent to protect U.S. military supply convoys in Afghanistan- the majority of the money is paid out from the Department of Defense through the use of defense contractors and often finds its way into the hands of shady characters.

The eye-opening report comes at a time when Afghan President Hamid Karzi is making a stink about U.S. private contractors operating in the warzone and has now set a four-month timetable for their withdrawal.

The dilemma for the private contractors is that U.S. and NATO members operating in Afghanistan, as well as civilian organizations and news media, use private contractors to get around a country with little infrastructure.

But according to the Congressional report, there are only 114 U.S. citizens (Department of Defense Private Contractors) inside Afghanistan - the remaining private contractor personnel is 13,916 from local or host country and 409 are various third country nationals.

If the Karzi government really wants the U.S. contractors out of the country they could load them up on a single plane in a couple of hours, says a former DoD contractor. Karzi complains that private contractors travel throughout the country with guns prominently displayed and disrupting traffic, yet the majority of the security detail comes from Afghanis the president is complaining about.

One must also look to the reason why U.S. and NATO allies require protection in the first place. Taliban fighters and tribal leaders look to the supply line convoys as a source of income; however outsourcing to these contractors has significant unintended consequences.

The Host Nation Trucking (HNT) contract fuels warlordism, extortion, and corruption, and it may be a significant source of funding for insurgents. In other words, the logistics contract has an outsized strategic impact on U.S. objectives in Afghanistan, according to the Congressional report.

The report also contends that the “Department of Defense has been blind to the potential strategic consequences of its supply chain contingency contracting. U.S. military logisticians have little visibility into what happens to their trucks on the road and virtually no understanding of how security is actually provided. When HNT contractors self-reported to the military that they were being extorted by warlords for protection payments for safe passage and that these payments were ‘funding the insurgency,’ they were largely met with indifference and inaction.”

Even Secretary of State Hilary Clinton acknowledged the supply line corruption activity during a December, 2009 Senate Foreign Relations Committee meeting and said, “One of the major sources of funding for the Taliban is the protection money.”

According to the report, the principal private security subcontractors on the HNT contract are warlords, strongmen, commanders, and militia leaders who compete with the Afghan central government for power and authority.

“Providing ‘protection’ services for the U.S. supply chain empowers these warlords with money, legitimacy, and a raison d’etre for their private armies. Although many of these warlords nominally operate under private security companies licensed by the Afghan Ministry of Interior, they thrive in a vacuum of government authority and their interests are in fundamental conflict with U.S. aims to build a strong Afghan government,” the Congressional inquiry explains.

Currently the HNT contracts are a $2.16 billion dollar boondoggle that provides indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contracts to provide ground transportation in Afghanistan for over 70 percent of Department of Defense goods and materiel, including food, water, fuel, equipment, and ammunition.

The large infusion of U.S. cash into Afghanistan should raise eyebrows because a good number of these warlords and Taliban fighters are also connected to the production of poppies (the illicit opium trade). And according to recently leaked documents from WikiLeaks there are billions of dollars flowing out of Afghanistan that remains unaccounted for due the country's rudimentary banking practices.

This reporter will begin a series of stories delving into the black-ops, shady bookkeeping and misused money the war in Afghanistan is guilty of and hopes to shed some light on a very unpopular war.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Summer of recovery falls flat in America

This week, President Barack Obama visited the ZBB Energy battery factory in Wisconsin. The 30-employee company manufactures high-tech devices that stores renewable energy and ZBB Energy was also a benefactor of U.S. stimulus dollars.

“Companies like this are showing us how manufacturing can come back right here in the United States of America, right back here to Wisconsin,” Obama explained. “We've been fighting on all fronts - inch by inch, foot by foot, mile by mile - to get this country moving forward again, and going after every single job we can create right here in the United States of America.”

Many restless Americans couldn’t disagree more with the president on the job front as the unemployment rate hovers around 10 percent. The Wisconsin energy company hosted the Obama Energy Department in January when they invested $14 million in the business; the President was present to claim credit for every employee.

However the Wall Street Journal decided to do their homework and found a very different story than the one the Obama Administration was portraying. ZBB Energy went public in June of 2007, and for the past three years ZBB has been hemorrhaging money.

The firm lost $4.9 million in fiscal year 2008, $5.5 million in fiscal year 2009, and has a "cumulative deficit" of $44.1 million, according to the Wall Street Journal. They also admitted that its ability to continue was a growing concern and would be directly tied to an infusion of more cash.

Economists argue that in a free market economy, private investors would invest the money, and either reap the rewards or suffer the losses if ZBB Energy failed. Under President Obama's “new” capitalist economy, ZBB Energy wins while the taxpayer is left holding the bag.

Not one to let the fundamental money making practice to get in the way Obama has decided to move full steam ahead with the Cap and Trade energy push.

“There are folks in Washington right now who think we should abandon our efforts to support clean energy," Obama said.

"They've made the political calculation that it's better to stand on the sidelines than work as a team to help American businesses and American workers. And my answer to people who have been playing politics the past year and a half is, they should come to this plant. They should go to any of the dozen new battery factories, or the new electrical vehicle manufacturers, or the new wind turbine makers, or the solar plants that are popping up all over this country, and they should have to explain why they think these clean energy jobs are better off being made in Germany or China or Spain, instead of right here in the United States."

If that statement was true, these companies would be running cash surpluses and not in the red and wouldn’t require bailout after bailout like ZBB Energy’s $44.1 million deficit shows.

Moving forward it is clear President Obama will stick to his agenda a push for an unproven clean energy market.

"The worst mistake we could make is to go back to doing what we were doing that got us into the mess that we were in," Obama said. "We can't turn back."

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A judge extends the deadline for a class-action lawsuit for veterans who suffered PTSD

A lawsuit was established to get much-needed care and monetary compensation for veterans who suffered Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the Middle East Wars has extended the deadline allowing more veterans to sign on to the pending ligation.

The lawsuit was brought on behalf of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF) veterans by the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) and pro-bono counsel Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP. Military veterans who were discharged between December 17, 2002 and October 14, 2008 are eligible to join the class-action lawsuit if they think they were short-changed with their military separation benefits.

Judge George W. Miller of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims signed an order giving eligible veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan until November 10, 2010 to join (or “opt-in to”) Sabo v. United States.

The agreement reached with the military services could establish veterans who join the lawsuit a disability rating upgrade and expedited records review which could result in improved health care for veterans and their families.

There are approximately, 42 percent, or 1,835 veterans, who signed and sent in “Opt-in Forms” before the extension. At least 2,623 other veterans are eligible to join the lawsuit and become class members, according to NVLSP.

While the extension was welcome news for the law firm that brought class-action lawsuit against the government, other veterans questioned the need for any deadlines when it comes to treatment and care combat veterans.

Since the Veteran Affairs has relaxed its rules on PTSD/TBI, this case should be held in abeyance until Department of Defense and VA get their act together and then use it to force compliance if long delays continue to plague veterans, one Marine said.

“More than a third of the eligible veterans are severely disabled, with VA disability ratings for PTSD of 70 to 100 percent,” said Bart Stichman, co-executive director of the NVLSP. “It’s not easy for them to understand the legal notice and what are the advantages of joining the lawsuit, even though they stand to potentially gain significant lifetime financial and health care benefits for themselves and their families.”

Stichman also said NVLSP plans to continue calling eligible veterans for the next three months, and is encouraging families and friends of eligible veterans to get involved on behalf of OIF/OEF veterans.

“Anyone who knows an Iraq or Afghanistan veteran discharged between December 17, 2002 and October 14, 2008 because of PTSD should ask if he or she has received a legal notice and opted into this lawsuit,” said Stichman. “These veterans and their families were treated unjustly and denied the benefits to which they were entitled. This is about getting them the lifetime military benefits that they have earned and deserve. More information is available at www.ptsdlawsuit.com.”

Eligible veterans who join the lawsuit are entitled to review of their PTSD disability rating by the military on a priority basis, a guaranteed correction of military records to show a higher military disability rating for PTSD for the six-month period following the date of release from military service, as well as a determination of whether the new rating should be permanently increased, decreased, or remain the same after the six-month period, a NVLSP statement read.

As a result of an increase in their military rating for PTSD, class members could receive back pay of disability benefits, reimbursement for healthcare expenses the military should have covered, as well as a higher amount of future benefits to which they and their families are entitled –the judgment could potentially provide millions of dollars in additional benefits over time.

“The disability ratings which are the subject of the lawsuit are critically important to ensuring veterans receive the benefits which they have earned and deserve,” NVLSP explains. “For years, the law has required the military to assign a disability rating of at least 50 percent to all veterans discharged for PTSD. A permanent disability rating of 30 percent or more entitles a veteran to monthly disability benefits for the rest of the veteran’s life, to free lifetime health care for the veteran and his or her spouse, and to free health care for their minor children.”

Requirements veterans must meet to join the class-action lawsuit include;

1. Veterans who served on active duty in the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, or Air Force.
2. Veterans who were found by a Physical Evaluation Board to be unfit for continued service due to or at least in part, to PTSD.
3. Veterans who were assigned a disability rating for PTSD of less than 50 percent.
4. Veterans who were released, separated, retired, or discharged from active duty after December 17, 2002, and prior to October 14, 2008 (regardless of whether such release, separation, retirement, or discharge resulted in the individual’s placement on the Temporary Disability Retirement List).

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego

Friday, August 13, 2010

Laredo Police Dept. finally confirms Zeta incident

After nearly three weeks of denials, the Laredo Police Department has confirmed there was a Zeta cartel incident and that the police blotter is authentic. Naturally this begs the question as to why law enforcement continued to deny the event.

There are still many questions left to be answered and more details will be forthcoming from this reporter. (Not Blogger).

The problem with this new story out of Laredo is it still doesn't match confidential law enforcement sources in the area who witnessed the incident first hand near Minerales Annex Rd. They say there was a surveillance at the ranch and it lasted more than one day.

There is much more to the story and that the Laredo Mayor and local law enforcement still haven’t released to the public. Hopefully investigative journalists in the area will keep digging for the full truth about the Zeta incident and why it was covered up and is still being covered up, according to sources in Laredo.

For now here are excerpts from Laredo news station KRGV ABC who confirmed additional details;

“NORTH OF LAREDO - FM 1472 in Webb County, known as Mines Road, is at the center of an Internet firestorm. Bloggers are posting articles claiming members of the Mexican drug cartel Los Zetas seized at least one ranch in an area northwest of Laredo last month.

"It was just one of many unconfirmed rumors and threats that we get here on a daily basis," said Laredo Police Department spokesman Joe Baeza. "A rumor that spun out of control."

Baeza said it began with a law enforcement bulletin dated July 24 that was leaked to a blogger. It reads as follows:

"On Friday 7-23-10 Laredo Webb informed that their county SWAT Team is conducting an operation in the Mines Rd. area. According to LT. Garcia with LSO (Laredo Sheriff Office) received a call from a ranch owner stating that the Zetas had taken over his ranch. As per the 17 (reporting person) he informed them that they stated La Compania (Zetas) was taking the ranch and no one was permitted on the ranch without permission. SO (Sheriff Office) will have an unmarked green Ford Taurus with two officers stationed at Los Compadres and a white Chevy Tahoe with two officers stationed at Mineral Rd. The LSO (Laredo Sheriff Office) will maintain surveillance in the area and advise if action is taken. Susp (suspect) Veh (vehicle) are described as a gray or silver Audi, a BLK (black) Escalade or Navigator and a van truck with a logo of a car wash spot free on the side. Border Patrol also has their response team on scene. Also known info of BMW's and Corvettes entering and leaving the area. Auth LT Lichtenberger if assistance is requested LPD (Laredo Police Department) will secure the outer perimeter. (07/24/10 07:42:10 NR1873)"

Read more; http://www.krgv.com/news/local/story/Police-Zeta-Ranch-Invasion-Rumors-False/A7xenNc7d0aDMy2H0v6D_g.cspx

Stay tune for further updates along the southern border.

* drug cartels

No confidence votes plague ICE and Border Patrol

The recent 259-0 disapproval of ICE’s point man John Morton by his fellow coworkers lends itself to an unwanted pattern in federal law enforcement agencies. Just last year the U.S. Border Patrol’s union, National Border Patrol Council put forth a similar vote and declared “no confidence” in their leader, David V. Aguilar.

The unanimous “no confidence vote” from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) rank-and-file union came about because the perception that management is abandoning its mission of protecting the public in order to support a political agenda including amnesty unnerves ICE agents.

The National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council of the American Federation of Government Employees, includes at least 7,000 ICE agents and employees, voted a resounding 259-0 for a resolution telling management of their "growing dissatisfaction and concern" of Assistant Secretary John Morton, who now heads ICE. The vote of no confidence also reached to Phyllis Coven, assistant director for the ICE agency's office of detention policy and planning as well.

The resolution implied that ICE management had "abandoned the agency's core mission of enforcing U.S. immigration laws and providing for public safety," the voting body thought they (ICE leadership) were more likely "to campaign for programs and policies related to amnesty and the creation of a special detention system for foreign nationals that exceeds the care and services provided to most U.S. citizens similarly incarcerated.”

Due to the increasing friction between rank-and-file and management, the union decided, “to publicly separate themselves from the actions of Director Morton and Assistant Director Coven and publicly state that ICE officers and employees do not support Morton or Coven or their misguided and reckless initiatives, which could ultimately put many in America at risk."

The ICE union statement strongly implied that the integrity of ICE "as well as the public safety" would be "better provided for in the absence of Director Morton and Assistant Director Coven."

Other key points included in the statement were; “The majority of ICE's enforcement and removal officers are prohibited from making street arrests or enforcing U.S. immigration laws outside of the jail setting. Hundreds of ICE officers nationwide perform no law enforcement duties whatsoever because of resource mismanagement within the agency.”

The statement also said; “ICE detention reforms have transformed into a detention system aimed at providing resort like living conditions to criminal aliens based on recommendations not from ICE officers and field managers, but from ‘special-interest groups.’ The lack of technical expertise and field experience has resulted in a priority of providing bingo nights, dance lessons and hanging plants to criminals, instead of addressing safe and responsible detention reforms for noncriminal individuals and families.”

Other plans from leadership include preventing ICE agents searching detainees housed in ICE facilities, therefore, allowing weapons, drugs and other contraband into detention centers — putting detainees, ICE officers and contract guards at risk.

Another aspect that rank-and-file that has complained about is the fact that senior leadership ignores reports about ICE internal investigations by the office of professional responsibility conceal agency and supervisor misconduct that use incidents to retaliate against employees who are whistleblowers or question improper activities.

“ICE senior leadership is aware that the system is broken, yet refuses to alert Congress to the severity of the situation and request additional resources to provide better enforcement and support of local agencies," the statement concluded.

Lamar Smith of Texas, ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee and a member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, told The Washington Times that the Obama administration is "simply not serious about enforcing all of our immigration laws."

New ICE guidelines say they "only have resources to remove approximately 400,000 aliens per year, less than 4 percent of the estimated illegal-alien population in the United States." This hard budget number forces ICE to prioritize what is most important to enforce on the limited money Congress has earmarked for ICE.

Rep. Smith shot back and ICE didn’t have the resources because they haven’t asked for more, "the Obama administration did not request a single new detention bed in their most recent budget request."

Heading out on a public relations trip to the Arizona border, Morton hoped to iron out the wrinkles the Obama administration placed when it decided to sue the Grand Canyon State rather than assist them with a growing illegal immigration problem that is breaking the state financially.

The two most out-spoken sheriffs along the Arizona/Mexico border said the planned visit by ICE’s Morton a "political stunt" and described the Obama administration attempts to "cover up its inaction in protecting our borders as pathetic."

"The administration blew past their promised Aug. 1 deadline to send 524 National Guard troops to Arizona, and now they are trying to appear concerned by sending the ICE director, who recently received a vote of 'no confidence' by ICE's union," Paul Babeu Sheriff of Pinal County and Larry Dever Sheriff of Cochise County said in a statement.

"While he may be on vacation or fundraising, we in Cochise and Pinal counties cannot take a vacation from the hundreds of thousands of illegals that continue to break our laws each day and threaten the safety and security of our residents," Sheriff Babeu frankly explained.

U.S. Border Patrol’s vote of “no confidence”

David V. Aguilar, Border Patrol’s chief, hails from rank-and-file and has moved up the ranks where he served under Congressmen Silvestre Reyes (D-TX) and has followed the coattails of ‘friends in high places’ all the way to the CBP Acting Deputy Commissioner slot.

However, Aguilar’s record is rife with controversy, power consolidation, and failures.

First, in February 2007, delegates to the National Border Patrol Council’s biennial convention unanimously endorsed a vote of “no confidence” in Chief Aguilar.

“The vote was the result of increasing frustration by front line Border Patrol Agents in the decisions of their senior leadership,” T.J. Bonner, NBPC National President, said in a statement. “This lack of leadership has caused morale to plummet, which in turn has accelerated the attrition rate among experienced agents. Unless drastic changes are made soon, the goal of securing our borders will remain as elusive as ever.”

Aguilar again received a “no confidence” vote from his rank and file agents on February 25, 2009 (the next meeting will be early 2011).

According to the representatives of the National Border Patrol Council they unanimously supported a vote of "no confidence" for Chief Aguilar due to his lack of leadership abilities. This is hardly the glowing recommendation CBP headquarters described and another example of the ‘screw up and move up’ policies plaguing the CBP and Department of Homeland Security.

“We at the NPBC are very concerned about this ‘acting appointment’ becoming permanent,” says Shawn Moran, Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council. “Chief Aguilar is the first chief in the history of Border Patrol to ever receive the vote of ‘no confidence’ and he has received it twice.”

The NBPC contends his agenda has resulted in bad management by SES level managers, compromising security for trade, commerce, pro-open border and protect the illegal alien agenda of corporate America which has led to diminished security at the U.S./Mexico borders.

One of the reasons Aguilar has created tension within his rank-and-file coworkers is the shortening of the training time required to complete the Border Patrol training Academy. “Lack of training coupled with late back ground checks” is yet another example of Aguilar’s inexperience or worse negligence with what Border Patrol agents require to perform at the best of their abilities, says Moran.

The mission of Border Patrol is to control immigration and secure our borders, yet Aguilar supports amnesty and couches it with the responsibility of catching terrorists. “Our goal is to stop drug cartels and illegal aliens. Terrorist apprehension is secondary and we do that once we’ve done our primary job,” Moran explains. “How can we have a leader that doesn’t even know the mission of Border Patrol?”

“Chief Aguilar has done more damage to moral than anyone. To reward him is ridiculous,” Moran finished.

Moran’s statements are echoed by a number of sources who say that agent morale is the lowest ever and how agents used to talk about how they’d take a bullet for this agent or that agent.

It is clear that under the tutelage of Department of Homeland Security’s Janet Napolitano, the country’s security is spiraling into disarray. Two of the leading agencies charged with protecting Americans from all forms of terrorism- foreign and domestic are at risk of letting something slip by due to negligence or worse politics.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner~y2009m12d16-Screw-up-move-up-in-play-again-in-Customs-and-Border-Protection

* ice

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

America’s toughest Sheriff Joe Arpaio draws a crowd in San Diego

Leave it to Arizona’s top Sheriff Joe Arpaio to attract a crowd at a conservative luncheon held in San Diego yesterday.

Not one to shy away from his critics, Sheriff Joe was more than happy to say a few words to the 100 anti-Arpaio protesters from a north county group called Escondido Human Rights Committee.

Before Sheriff Joe gave his speech he took the time to address the protesters in front of the Country Club of Rancho Bernardo. The protesters were waving "Stop the hate,” "Down with Arpaio," and "Why do you hate Mexicans?" signs.

When Arpaio, who was protected by law enforcement, tried to talk to his adversaries chants of "Racist go home" drowned out his words. But in true Sheriff Joe fashion he smiled at the protesters and went inside the country club to address the folks who invited him to San Diego in the first place.

The Sheriff is a staunch supporter of Arizona’s tough illegal immigration bill SB1070. While some of the provisions were set aside by the federal judge, the end of sanctuary cities in the state remained in tact causing plenty of concern for open-border activists.

“A lot of (illegal) immigrants are heading to California that we arrest, and I would hope that your governor would at least send me a little note saying thank you for grabbing these guys," Arpaio said during a speech before a conservative organization.

It's the kind of heated reactions he gets all over the country, he told the audience.

"It's crazy. They're all telling me to go home. I have a right to be in San Diego. If you want to see my papers, I'll show them to all of you," Arpaio said while joking.

The event was sponsored by North County chapter of Conservative Order for Good Government, and there wasn’t a seat to be had as the luncheon was completely sold-out.

In the past Sheriff Arpaio has garnered national attention for his illegal immigration sweeps and requiring his prisoners in jail wear pink underwear. Even NBA basketball great, Charles Barkley made an appearance in an Arpaio’s jail due to an intoxication charge in Arizona. He was given the infamous “pink underwear,” but the Sheriff didn’t make Barkley wear the shocking pink under garments.

There were also a handful of Sheriff Joe supporters that attended the rally at the country club. "Joe Arpaio is my hero. I wish there were a million more like him," said Dom who didn’t want to use his last name.

The San Diego Police Department said there were no arrests and the demonstration went off without a hitch.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner~y2010m8d10-Mexican-cartels-takeover-Texas-ranch--NOT-A-HOAX-Police-blotter-confirms-story#

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Rancher claims Mexican cartels takeover Texas ranch -Police blotter confirms story is not a hoax

After 16 days of denials by Laredo law enforcement and local officials regarding a Mexican drug cartel takeover of a Laredo area ranch, a Texas police blotter proves the alleged incident did in fact happen and that multiple agencies responded to the scene of a seized U.S. ranch.

Think about it for a moment.

One of the most brutal drug cartels operating in Mexico crossed the U.S. border and took a ranch from its lawful owner.

Intimidation has arrived along the southern border.

The police blotter tells the story of the events that unfolded on July 23rd;

“On Friday 7-23-10 Laredo Webb informed that their county SWAT Team is conducting an operation in the Mines Rd. area. According to LT. Garcia with LSO (Laredo Sheriff Office) received a call from a ranch owner stating that the Zetas had taken over his ranch. As per the 17 (reporting person) he informed them that they stated La Compania (area business) was taking the ranch and no one was permitted on the ranch without permission. SO (Sheriff Office) will have an unmarked green Ford Taurus with two officers stationed at Los Compadres and a white Chevy Tahoe with two officers stationed at Mineral Rd. The LSO (Laredo Sheriff Office) will maintain surveillance in the area and advise if action is taken. Susp (suspect) Veh (vehicle) are described as a gray or silver Audi, a BLK (black) Escalade or Navigator and a van truck with a logo of a car wash spot free on the side. Border Patrol also has their response team on scene. Also known info of BMW’s and Corvettes entering and leaving the area. Auth LT Lichtenberger if assistance is requested LPD (Laredo Police Department) will secure the outer perimeter. (07/24/10 07:42:10 NR1873)”

Cartels have crossed the sovereign borders of the United States causing multiple agencies to respond and the end result was a media blackout. It’s well documented that media blackouts in Mexico are happening because the cartels are threatening reporters and news outlets with bodily harm. The question is why American law enforcement agencies are giving reporters the “We can neither confirm nor deny the incident happened line?”

It was a law enforcement officer on the scene that also confirmed the incident in fact happened and officers on the ground said they “considered this an act of war.”

The cover-up surrounding this story has reverberated throughout other federal law enforcement agencies. A recently retired ICE veteran, John Sakelarides had plenty to say about the latest U.S. incursion.

“What do you call an invasion by foreign nationals who are armed and occupy territory belonging to a sovereign nation? An act of war. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it's a duck. Anyone who is denying this is what has occurred and that it constitutes an act of war is either an idiot or is somehow involved in this act of war.”

He continues to say, “If they (those covering-up the story) are elected representatives or government officials and they are aware that an act of war has been perpetrated against the United States, and refuse to admit it has occurred, much less do anything about it, is violating their oath of office.”

The approximate location of the U.S. ranch taken by the Zetas was 10 miles northwest of I-35 off Mines Road and Minerales Annex Road.

The Los Zetas drug cartel is an offshoot of the elite Mexican military trained in special ops, many of whom were trained by the U.S. military. The mercenary organization is said to include members of corrupt Mexican Federales, politicians as well as drug traffickers. The group was once part of the Gulf cartel, but has splintered and now directly competes with the Gulf cartel for premium drug smuggling routes in the Texas region.

The leader of Los Zetas cartel is Heriberto “El Lazca” Lazcano and the Zetas are considered the most violent paramilitary group in Mexico by the DEA. These drug cartels routinely kidnap tourists, infiltrate local municipalities and smuggle large quantities of narcotics into the U.S. marketplace.

A media firestorm ensued after this reporter posted a story on Saturday July 24, 2010. Now that the story is corroborated, it will be up to local media to track down what events took place after the Zetas seized a U.S ranch.

Stay tuned for updates reports throughout the week.

For original story; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner~y2010m7d24-Los-Zetas-drug-cartel-takes-control-2-US-ranches-in-Texas
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Monday, August 9, 2010

Labor unions and Latino leaders begin a statewide voter registration in California

With less than 90 days until the November midterm elections, California labor unions and Latino community leaders are ratcheting up their voter registration teams in an effort to minimize Democratic losses.

“For Latinos, the 2010 election is more than merely electing one candidate or another, it is about taking an active role, now more than ever, in the decisions that will affect our families and creating a brighter future for our children and grandchildren,'' said Eliseo Medina, international executive vice president for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). “We have the potential to swing elections and the time for our voices to be heard is now.”

SEIU along with the California Teachers Union and Latino leaders started a new nine-city registration campaign called Por Nuestras Familias – Todos a Votar. For those who don’t read Spanish the English translation is “For Our Families – All Vote.”

By contrast, California is also home to the largest network of Tea Party organizations in the country and they too are looking to sway voters to consider the financial consequences of illegal immigration to Californians.

However, the labor and Latino leaders are looking to have their voices well represented in November. Latino groups are trying to educate their constituency about the importance of voting especially in light of Arizona’s SB1070, a law that sets out to enforce immigration laws more strictly in Arizona.

“With jobs and immigration being the two most important issues in November's elections, participating in the political process gives Latinos an opportunity to demand respect for our contributions to the economy and civic life of our communities,” said Angelica Salas, executive director of Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA).

CHIRLA was formed in 1986 to advance the human and civil rights of immigrants and refugees in Los Angeles; promote harmonious multi-ethnic and multi-racial human relations; and through coalition-building, advocacy, community education and organizing, empower immigrants and their allies to build a more just society, according to their website.

The CHIRLA organization has been accused of openly meeting with high-ranking Mexican government officials during the California proposition 187 debate that rocked California during the 1990s.

The unions and Latino leaders say the new voter registration campaign will encourage the Latinos, “who make up 32 percent of the adult population eligible to vote but only represent 20 percent of the California’s registered voters,” to head to the ballot box for the midterm election.

The bus tour is set to begin on August 14 and plans to visit San Diego, Riverside, Santa Ana, Los Angeles and San Fernando in southern California before heading north to Bakersfield, Fresno, San Jose and Sacramento.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Doctors against Obamacare say no to a government takeover

A sea of white coats filled Spanish Landing in downtown San Diego to present a united front against government-controlled health care. A group of physicians formed the National Doctors Tea Party and have begun their cross country trek; however these doctors are on a mission to educate Americans about the perils of Obamacare.

A bevy of speakers spoke about the dangers patients will face if the government is successful in monopolizing treatment options. Sharon Angle, a Tea Party candidate running against Senate leader Harry Reid, assured the fresh faces that attending a tea party may be uncomfortable at first, but the American cause is “well worth the extra work.”

Typical complaints speakers addressed was the need for choices, choices in doctors, choices in insurance and choices in politicians. Approximately 1,000 attendees cheered when Angle boasted about ousting incumbents, expanding liberty and limiting government’s reach into every aspect of daily life.

Three events compelled folks to spend a few hours of their weekend listening to doctors, radio talk show hosts and political hopefuls- President Obama suing Arizona for enforcing immigration laws; White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs’s comment that Missouri’s 71 percent approval of proposition ‘C’ (protecting residents from being forced to buy Obamacare) means “nothing” to the White House; and one California judge telling seven million residents their votes meant nothing and overturned proposition 8 (the right for gays to marry).

Conversation amongst rally attendees had a common theme- American was being run like a dictatorship and the legislating from the bench had to stop. The Tea Party movement has been gaining popularity during the past 18 months and plenty of first-timers came out trying to determine what they can do to change the track America is heading down.

Even the younger generation knows the economic path the country is currently on is unsustainable.

“This is my first tea party and I came out because of what President Obama did to Arizona. It was the last straw for me,” says Ted a San Diego native. “My dad fought in Vietnam and was a prisoner of war, I know what freedom is and large government and deficit spending is not freedom.”

Author of “The truth about Obamacare,” Sally Pipes also spoke to San Diegans about the devastation Obamacare will bring to the world’s leader in health care. It was only three years ago that Pipes earned her American citizenship, she emigrated from Canada, and she has been a leading voice in warning Americans about the dangers of national health care.

She explained that since Canada implemented National health care in 1984, Canadians lost immediate access to doctors, have been subject to less than state-of-the-art technology and subjected to health care rationing.

“The average waiting list to see a primary care doctor is 16 weeks,” Pipes said. “We have more than 250 doctors leave Canada each year, not because they want to make more money, but because they want to be doctors without all the restrictions.”

Many Americans do not realize the Canadian system includes rationing care and that their spending is strictly enforced by the government’s fixed budget each year regardless of circumstances. Pipes also informed the attendees that Canada has made it illegal to purchase private health care.

She also said there are some easy fixes to bring American health care costs down – “stop forcing doctors to practice defensive medicine. This cost the U.S. $210 billion last year alone.”

The country’s continued unhappiness with the state of the economy has encouraged many to get involved in politics for the first time. Many of these folks have put in all on the line to run against well-established candidates in an attempt to represent the silent majority in the upcoming midterm election.

Chelene Nightingale, California gubernatorial candidate concurred with other Tea Party speakers, “Nothing from the government is free.” She went on to say, “One of my favorite Ronald Reagan quotes is ‘freedom is one generation away from extinction.”

The message from relative unknown politicians clearly resonated with San Diegans.

Crowd favorite, Congressional hopeful and Iraq War veteran, Nick Popaditch had plenty to say about the 2,500-page health care law. “When I was injured in 2004, in Fallujah, Iraq, it was the doctors who took off their protective gear to save my life during a firefight.”

Popaditch commended America’s ability to provide him with the best medical treatment in the world. “Doctors were able to take a blind man (me) to a sighted man. It doesn’t get any better than that,” he said.

Like many would-be politicians, Popaditch promised the rally attendees he would repeal Obamacare if he was lucky enough to represent California’s 51st district. “I’ll defund Obamacare and the czars.” That statement earned the Iraq War hero a standing ovation.

Looking forward, doctors across America have drawn up a relatively simple plan to aid the skyrocketing costs of health care.

Start with issuing tax credit vouchers to insure 20 million without health insurance; Let insurance companies compete for customers; Expand high-risk pools (this includes pre-existing condition rules); Make insurance portable; Let patients shop around and encourage health savings accounts; Stop the lawsuit lottery by monitoring frivolous lawsuits; Reject government control; and Don’t allow bureaucrat health boards of unelected persons from making clinical decisions best left to doctors, is the plan from Docs 4 Patient Care.

The San Diego event organizer Doctor Adam Dorin of Physicians Against Obamacare said he began this journey because too many doctors were not being heard. In essence he said, “This movement is to awaken the American physician’s silent majority against Obamacare.”

The National Doctors Tea Party will continue to travel across the country educating doctors and patients with the hope that the White House will stop dictating and start listening to those who have a stake in providing the best health care to all Americans.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Mexico increases their drug war death toll to 28,000

In the past four years Mexico has lost more than 28,000 lives in Felipe Calderon’s war on drug. The new number adds approximately 3,000 murders to the drug cartel violence tally, according to the Mexican Center of Investigation and National Security (Cisen).

While the murder rate is closing in on the 30,000 mark, National Intelligence Chief Guillermo Valdes says the high number of deaths is a small victory in the war on drugs and the fact remains that cartels are losing many high -ranking members.

During an “anti-drug strategy” speech with President Calderon, Valdes spoke with other senior officials hoping to discover new methods that can break the stranglehold cartels have inside Mexico.

The meeting also produced one idea that many in America found shocking – the possibility of legalizing drugs as a way to curtail the violent industry. President Calderon said personally he was opposed to legalizing drugs, but indicated his administration was open to a debate on the topic.

“You have to analyze carefully the pros and cons and the key arguments on both sides,” Calderon explained.

Since the drug war began under President Calderon, the National Intelligence Chief, Valdes, said there was at least one major clash a day (963) between security forces and drug cartels. So far the Mexican police have confiscated about 85,000 weapons, 34,000 vehicles and more than $400 million in cash.
Even though these numbers are impressive, Valdes knows there is a lot of work left before the government can take control of the organized crime issue.

“With regard to the aim of establishing conditions for peace and recovering control of regions affected by organized crime, we have not achieved what we wanted. Violence is growing,” he states.

One new priority Valdes explained they would focus on was the money laundering problem. He admitted the government needed to ensure that local institutions (banks) did not give into the corruption that comes with the drug cartel money.

Currently the Mexican government does not have control of the local and state police forces, as many of these officials have been paid off by cartel members under the threat that they or their families will be killed if they do not comply with the cartel leaders.

And the corruption does not stop with the government, this past July, Federal Police arrested five employees of Pemex (Mexico’s main gasoline provider) who were working with the Los Zetas to steal petroleum products clandestinely in the State of Veracruz. Early reports estimate the cartels managed to skim approximately 45 percent of the production.

“It was obvious from the first moment that these criminal organizations were involved in a very lucrative enterprise with little risk,” said Samuel Villa, an analyst with the Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana, “Any other activity would have been more dangerous.”

One thing to keep in mind is the more threatened the cartel leaders feel the more desperate they react.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Astro Turf provided by SEIU hijacks Arizona 1070 rally

Not so long ago the Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) played schoolyard games and called the Tea Party movement Astro Turf. It’s been more than a year and the grassroots Tea Party movement is still going strong. In fact many political candidates backed by the movement are poised to win Congressional seats and it appears the opposition SEIU unions are the ones providing the “fake crowds.”

Case in point, last week Arizona’s capital, Phoenix recorded triple-digit heat and heated protesters. “I was waiting around for something to happen all morning. There were 50-60 peaceful protestors and media folks. Then 11 buses drove up from Los Angeles and out came SEIU employees,” said Rhonda Deniston of Stop Taxing Us, a Tea Party group.

Deniston explains that the rally goers were instructed to get rowdy and get arrested- hardly a grassroots movement by Arizonians against SB1070 illegal immigration law.

Despite the bussed-in, rent -a -crowd, Arizonans are committed to restoring law and order in their state and say they will not be deterred by Obama’s lawsuit.

Many Arizona residents said the law isn’t about Republican or Democrat- it’s about right and wrong. This may explain the 70 percent approval rating of SB1070 by its citizens.

“I wish everyone would stop picking on Arizona, we have real problems and we have to fix them,” says Ruth Burke a longtime Arizona resident who happens to be a Democrat.

Many of the folks bussed in from California were from the SEIU 660 in Los Angeles. The union's presence came as no surprise Tea Party members considering the hot-button immigration issue.

Plenty of video was taken in Arizona and one group provided interesting fodder for the camera. Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (A.N.S.W.E.R.) trotted out impressionable college age kids openly talking about how good Communism would be for America. These kids were sporting bright green stickers advertising the National Conference on Socialism in Los Angeles, CA. November 13 and 14, 2010, according to Deniston.

The A.N.S.W.E.R web site PSLWEB.org has a lot of information about socialism workshops and it is quite alarming. “The two kids in the video were freely talking to me until and older man in a red shirt (their handler) noticed they were talking to me and drew them away.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Who knows how much video clips are worth – perhaps immigration reform.

Video of Che supporters; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXW0Rrf_pYM&feature=player_embedded#

More video of SB1070 rally; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeVYaDuUGWs&feature=email

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner
American flag being defaced at an anti-Arizona 1070 rally

Arizona SB1070 rally photos
Arizona SB1070 rally photos
Photos taken at rally in Arizona.
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More About: Immigration

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Drug cartels, media blackouts and more are commonplace along border

A virtual media blackout is taking place along Mexico’s borders, and nowhere is the need to get the stories out more important than the U.S./Mexican border- a place where more than 25,000 have lost their lives because of cartel violence.

“After years of relative calm, the gangland nightmare is back-and yet, barely a single mention of the clashes here has been made by local radio and television or newspapers. The city's journalists, having lost some of their own and seen their colleagues across the country killed or kidnapped, have been silenced for fear of their lives,” according to the Houston Chronicle report. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/world/7131506.html

One brave Mexican reporter spoke out about the virtual warzone that is his country is embroiled in.

"Nowhere is the media controlled more than it is here," said the journalist who says he would face serious danger if identified. "There is total control."

American Thinker, an online news website goes on to say that, “In border towns like Nuevo Laredo, Matamoros, Reynosa and numerous others, gun battles between the military and the powerful Zetas and the Gulf Cartel have been fought around the clock during the past week. Officials at all levels of the government have offered little if any information to a frightened citizenry amid the media blackout. One local businessman remarked that ‘before the news was alarmist; now there's no information at all.’”

Journalists in Mexico have no choice but to comply with the drug cartels or face the murderous consequences.

Last week four journalists were kidnapped in Gomez Palacios, a northern border city ravaged by gang violence. “Gangsters demanded that television stations broadcast videos favorable to them in exchange for the journalists' lives. The station complied, and the men were released,” according to American Thinker.

The uptick of violence along the U.S./Mexico border is directly related to the Zetas and the Gulf Cartels who are fighting for control of smuggling routes into the U.S. The tightening of the border by authorities and as many as six major cartels have pushed the violence to barbaric levels in order to control routes and snag the top spot in the world of organized crime in Mexico.

Meanwhile on the American side of the border, the Obama administration and a subservient main stream media appear to control the border violence news leaving anyone not living in the region uninformed about the dangerous living conditions along both sides of the border.

More evidence of this comes from a story by the BBC about the small border town of Ft. Hancock, Texas; http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-10825403 “On a tour of Ft Hancock's streets, most of which are unpaved, Jose Sierra points to two smarter homes, one sporting security cameras, another with a shiny 18-wheeler truck parked outside. ‘The element moves freely in the community, but they're keeping it low key,’" says Jose Sierra, Ft Hancock's law enforcement officer.

The border crossing in Ft. Hancock is outfitted with a brand new customs and border post containing a new Border Patrol headquarters complete with state-of-the-art fencing. But like most border outposts the stretch of the fence runs a few miles east and west of the border office before it ends leaving miles and miles of open desert for cartels to operate freely east and west of Ft Hancock.

“As if to emphasize its absurdity, a metal footbridge, narrow but unguarded spans the Rio Grande River a few miles to the west. Local farmers do not tend to speak of personal danger, despite being warned to "arm yourselves" by Hudspeth County Sheriff Arvin West, at a meeting earlier this year,” the BBC reports.
However, Officer Sierra worries the violence will spread to Ft Hancock sooner rather than later. "It's just a matter of time," he says.

As for other border towns the violence is very real

Fighting was especially heavy in Nuevo Laredo on the U.S. border 120 miles north of Monterrey on Friday and early Saturday morning the last weekend in July, according to Border Land Beat http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2010/08/urban-combat.html.

“A massive firefight lasting almost an hour was reported in southern Nuevo Laredo Friday afternoon in the Colonia Concordia area close to the Wal-Mart and Home Depot stores on Avenida Reforma between army troops supported by a helicopter and a group of gunmen. Civilians rushed out of the area, fleeing into stores for safety from the intense gunfire. Grenade detonations were reported on the Avenida Reforma,” the report read.

The fighting continued and the gunmen were pursued by soldiers. However, there were no deaths or arrests reported.

There was also a grenade attack reported on Friday night that hit a local Televisa network building. Residents said the attack happened before the nightly newscast. According to witnesses the grenade was thrown from a vehicle and exploded outside the television studios.

More incursions into the U.S.

The U.S. Department of Defense said it was looking into a second helicopter sighting in the past three weeks by a Mexican military helicopter crossing into U.S. airspace near rural Zapata County, Texas.

According to a Houston Chronicle story, “The incident did occur and it’s still under investigation,” department spokeswoman Maj. Tanya Bradsher said, confirming that the copter, believed to belong to the Mexican navy, was seen Sunday.

Rick Pauza, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman, earlier in March confirmed a Mexican military helicopter hovered as long as 20 minutes on March 9 (2009) over a residential area near Falcon Lake, a reservoir on the Rio Grande. He said CBP officials who lived in the neighborhood were among those who saw it.

Pauza said the helicopter crossed back without incident and that once the sighting was reported up the chain of the command “that was the extent of it.”

Zapata County Sheriff Sigifredo Gonzalez said Sunday’s sighting was the second one confirmed, but several others were reported to him during the past two weeks that he couldn’t be sure enough about to forward to the federal government.

Gonzalez said the unconfirmed incursions occurred on March 20 and on Monday and Tuesday and were reported to him by a deputy, a local news reporter, and a federal officer who the sheriff said has since been muzzled by higher-ups.

“I don’t want to get him involved because it sounds like they’re going to fire him for saying the truth,” Gonzalez said of the officer.

According to Gonzalez, he was “initially rebuffed” by federal officials at the Joint Operations Intelligence Center until Gonzalez showed them photos from witnesses and that Gonzalez had a “pretty good idea they were Mexican military operations."

According to Gonzalez, when he produced the photos, federal officials blamed “faulty radars”. What’s important to note, local authorities being “muzzled by higher-ups” which might be occurring today, in South Texas,” the Texas newspaper said.

It’s not the first time

This reporter wrote a story in December of last year about the Mexican military blurring the international border lines. The Story titled “Screw up move up in play again in Customs and Border Protections,” http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner~y2009m12d16-Screw-up-move-up-in-play-again-in-Customs-and-Border-Protection. The story details military incursions under the section “Aguilar Denies Military Incursions by Mexico’s Soldiers.”

“Another problem plaguing the Border States is the increased border incursions,” the story reads.

According to Ramirez, “Over the past 10 years (through Spring 2006), the Border Patrol has reported more than 250 incursions by Mexican military and police units into the U.S., including incidents where U.S. civilians, Border Patrol agents, and other law enforcement came under fire from the uniformed Mexicans.

While Sheriff’s in Hudspeth County continue to fight on the front lines along the U.S./Mexico border region, aggressive incidents have continually been downplayed by Aguilar and Congressman Reyes; even when these incursions are documented with video.

In 2006 the Hudspeth County Texas Sheriff’s deputies and Texas state troopers ran into a convoy of Mexican vehicles transporting drugs on the U.S. side of the border. “As you know, our law enforcement chased them back to the border where they were met by heavily-armed Mexican military units in Humvees, with machine guns, who escorted the drug smugglers back into Mexico. Again, our government covers up for Mexico’s involvement and plays down the incident,” Ramirez said.

In Congressional testimony, Congressman Reyes stated there were no Mexican military incursions and the Hudspeth County Sheriff’s deputy was mistaken. Reyes concluded that because he served in the U.S. military and resided in the border region most his life there was no Mexican military crossing the international border. This echoed the statements by the Mexican government later parroted by representatives of the Bush Administration including Aguilar.

However, in sworn testimony from Kelly Legarreta, Deputy Sheriff in Hudspeth County and first on the scene when the alleged incursion took place stated, he too had served in the U.S. Marines and he knew what he saw –Mexican military illegally crossing the U.S. border assisting two vehicles loaded with contraband back into Mexico.”

Drug cartels place a million dollar price tag on Sheriff Joe Arpaio

According to a news report filed by a local Fox affiliate in Phoenix when Arizona's immigration law, SB 1070, went into effect, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio was targeted by the Mexican drug cartels: they allegedly put a million dollar price on his head.

In an audio message in Spanish the cartel sends a garbled message, but the text was crystal clear. "It's offering a million dollars for Sheriff Joe Arpaio's head and offering a thousand dollars for anyone who wants to join the Mexican cartel."

An Arizona man who wants to remain anonymous says it was his wife who received the text message on Tuesday evening. The text message included an international phone number and instructions to pass the message along.

The Maricopa County Sheriff Department is taking the latest death threat very seriously and Lisa Allen of the Sheriff's office says the message originated somewhere in Mexico.

From January to June this year, more than 7,000 people have been killed, according to Mexican Attorney General Arturo Chavez. About 50,000 troops and federal police are actively involved in Mexico's war on drugs and the government says record amounts of drugs have been seized. Mexican authorities said they have either arrested or killed many cartel leaders this year.

A little more

The Los Zetas story that was written over a week ago is still being investigated and will be updated as details and facts are released. Stay tuned…

I want to give the troops at Death by a 1000 Papercuts a shout out for sticking with the story and continuing their research, you can find them at; http://deathby1000papercuts.com/ and I can’t leave out the guys at Diggers Realm; http://www.diggersrealm.com/mt/ powering through the blogosphere one story at a time.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner