Skip to comments.Police face Mexican military, smugglers
Posted on 01/24/2006 6:24:51 AM PST by jackbenimble
Armed standoff along U.S. border By Sara A. Carter and Kenneth Todd Ruiz, Staff Writers
Mexican soldiers and civilian smugglers had an armed standoff with nearly 30 U.S. law enforcement officials on the Rio Grande in Texas on Monday afternoon, according to Texas police and the FBI. Mexican military Humvees were towing what appeared to be thousands of pounds of marijuana across the border into the United States, said Chief Deputy Mike Doyal, of the Hudspeth County Sheriff's Department.
Mexican Army troops had several mounted machine guns on the ground more than 200 yards inside the U.S. border -- near Neely's Crossing, about 50 miles east of El Paso -- when Border Patrol agents called for backup. Hudspeth County deputies and Texas Highway patrol officers arrived shortly afterward, Doyal said.
"It's been so bred into everyone not to start an international incident with Mexico that it's been going on for years," Doyal said. "When you're up against mounted machine guns, what can you do? Who wants to pull the trigger first? Certainly not us."
An FBI spokeswoman confirmed the incident happened at 2:15 p.m. Pacific Time.
"Bad guys in three vehicles ended up on the border," said Andrea Simmons, a spokeswoman with the FBI's El Paso office. "People with Humvees, who appeared to be with the Mexican Army, were involved with the three vehicles in getting them back across."
Simmons said the FBI was not involved and referred inquiries to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
ICE did not return calls seeking comment.
Doyal said deputies captured one vehicle in the incident, a Cadillac Escalade reportedly stolen from El Paso, and found 1,477 pounds of marijuana inside. The Mexican soldiers set fire to one of the Humvees stuck in the river, he said.
Doyal's deputies faced a similar incident on Nov. 17, when agents from the Fort Hancock border patrol station in Texas called the sheriff's department for backup after confronting more than six fully armed men dressed in Mexican military uniforms. The men -- who were carrying machine guns and driving military vehicles -- were trying to bring more than three tons of marijuana across the Rio Grande, Doyal said.
Doyal said such incidents are common at Neely's Crossing, which is near Fort Hancock, Texas, and across from the Mexican state of Chihuahua.
"It happens quite often here," he said.
Deputies and border patrol agents are not equipped for combat, he added.
"Our government has to do something," he said. "It's not the immigrants coming over for jobs we're worried about. It's the smugglers, Mexican military and the national threat to our borders that we're worried about."
Citing a Jan. 15 story in the Daily Bulletin, Reps. David Dreier, R-Glendora, and Duncan Hunter, R-San Diego, last week asked the House Judiciary Committee, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, the House Homeland Security Committee and the House International Relations Committee to investigate the incursions. The story focused on a Department of Homeland Security document reporting 216 incursions by Mexican soldiers during the past 10 years and a map with the seal of the president's Office of National Drug Control Policy, both of which were given to the newspaper.
Requests by Dreier, chairman of the House Rules Committee, and Hunter were made in jointly signed letters.
On Wednesday, Chertoff played down the reports of border incursions by the Mexican military. He suggested many of the incursions could have been mistakes, blaming bad navigation by military personnel or attributing the incursions to criminals dressed in military garb.
Mexican officials last week denied any incursions made by their military.
But border agents interviewed over the past year have discussed confrontations those they believe to be Mexican military personnel.
"We're sitting ducks," said a border agent speaking on condition of anonymity. "The government has our hands tied."
Sara A. Carter can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (909) 483-8552.
Kenneth Todd Ruiz can be reached by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at (909) 483-8555.
Re your #27 -
"...Why does Chertoff remind me so much of Baghdad Bob?"
Say, now there's an interesting mission for a competent Photoshopper out there in FR Land!!!
Uhhhh, the libertarians on FR that I know of are the strongest proponents of border security and organizations like the Minutemen. It is your authoritarian buddies like the late great Cultural Jihad who are open-border lobbyists.
Re your #26 - "The pharmacist needs to cowboy up and send some of texas's finest to the border."
That'd be nice... dream on.
Since when do the Rangers have Strykers, M-1 Abrams, or Helo gunships?
Most LEOs are not even trusted with select fire weapons, much less anything "tactical", other than the occasional SWAT unit.
And if they dispatch one of those, they will be promptly spanked by Washington and probably have their funding cut forthwith.
The Branch Davidians at Waco got a lot more government attention than these Mexican invaders ever will.
Are we going to sit on our hands until we are conquered by the banana republic of Mexico?
"Rush has had his wings clipped too. "
Really? I just heard him give a pretty good rant about it about a half hour ago. (1420 or thereabouts, EST)
In my opinion Chertoff is both an incompetent moron and a liar. One is not exclusive of the other.
"The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government,
1. The act of invading; the act of encroaching upon the rights or possessions of another; encroachment; trespass.
As I posted on the other thread of this matter, Chertoff's lack of action or interest is understandable. They were all Mexicans, therefore it would be racist and/or profiling to defend our border. (sarcasm)
Oh don't say that .... someone here on FR might turn you into the Republican Thought Police for not thinking like a good little Republican who always supports the President.
You lived in Alpine? I heard it can get rough out there in Brewster County.
One the prettiest spots in Texas. Cost of living is a little high.
I spent many a night out with my BP friends or on surveillance watching the flood cross the river. We used to go into places like down Chispa Road or Loma Linda Crossing where if your radio worked or cell phone signal let you call for help it would take over an hour to get there by car.
Beautiful, but very rugged country.
He read my post and wanted to try and salvage some dignity.
He'll do as he's told.
If they are on an orbit assignment only seconds to minutes if they are coming from an airport farther "inland" it could take 10-15 minutes depending on distance and scramble time.
Infrared works good out there due to lack of tall vegetation.
There are two problems we are dealing with. One is the illegal immigration/invasion. That can be easily delt with using current law by prosecuting employers and bankers. The second is the drug smuggling. That will require strict border control.
They didn't know that river they were crossing was the Rio Grand. That's a sizable navigation error. That's also sizable "stonewalling" by the administration.
It's looking more and more as though Mexico has forgotten the lessons of 1836 and 1850 and is seeking a memory refresher.
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