Skip to comments.Sinking to new lows
Posted on 06/26/2010 9:17:51 PM PDT by ErnstStavroBlofeld
Drug traffickers are spending $1 million a pop to build boats that look like submarines and can carry 4 tons of cocaine for 2,000 miles without refueling.
Nicknamed "narco subs," they're made to sneak loads up from South America to Mexico, where the drugs are offloaded and taken overland into the United States.
"It is a semi-submersible coffin," said Jay Bergman, Andean regional director for the Drug Enforcement Administration. "You batten down the hatches and you are doing everything to not be detected sailing in the middle of the ocean."
At least 13 of the craft have been stopped and their crews prosecuted in U.S. courts since October 2008, according to the Justice Department. The first was intercepted in 2006.
The use of narco subs underscores how drug cartels have sought to go over, under or around borders, and have prompted worries that the craft could be used to smuggle weapons or people.
The latest craft was captured last month when a Houston Chronicle journalist was aboard a Customs and Border Protection plane flying from Corpus Christi.
The P-3 turboprop was 500 miles off Colombia's coast, coordinating with the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Dallas.
"This will go down quickly," advised a helicopter shadowing two speedboats.
Flanked by armed Coast Guard boarding teams, three underwear-clad traffickers waved a white flag, climbed out of a hatch and into the American justice system.
The boat carried more than 2 tons of cocaine, but most carry 4 to 8 tons, law enforcement official say.
About 3,000 pounds was offloaded by the Coast Guard before the narco sub lost stability and sank, according to court papers filed in Florida.
(Excerpt) Read more at chron.com ...
“At least 13 of the craft have been stopped and their crews prosecuted in U.S. courts since October 2008, according to the Justice Department. The first was intercepted in 2006.”
I have never heard of this...and I REALLY follow the news...WTF? How is THAT possible? Oh man, there is so much BS we don’t hear about...this is an assault, in my opinion, an act of war...why has this not been in the news at all? I mean isn’t this in FOX’s wheelhouse, at least?
“........ “A little bit of courage; little bit of stupidity; little bit of desperation; a lot of criminality - interesting mix.”
The really scary part about this, is if these guys can obtain them and operate them. So can terrorists.
Imagine one packed to the gills with explosives, drive right up underneath a cruise ship or the real nightmare is one carrying a crude nuke.
Some of them don’t even have human crews. Just a long range on a small diesel, and a GPS connected to an autopilot. Steering from waypoint to waypoint, it will travel thousands of miles and finally run itself onto a beach when it arrives to be unloaded. Lots of unwatched beaches in the Bahamas.
“Imagine one packed to the gills with explosives, drive right up underneath a cruise ship or the real nightmare is one carrying a crude nuke.”
Or diving on oil rigs...do we have no border security BELOW the boreder, either...cripes, this is becoming a nightmare...MORE of a nightmare...
The reporters are stupid and lazy. These are not “subs” that dive. They are “semi-submersibles” that are always positively bouyant. IOW, they are nearly awash, and hence invisible in choppy water. But they can’t dive under anything. If they dive, they are sinking.
Sounds like an interesting thing for Dan Kilmer to run across.
The existence of these semi-submersibles can present a national security hazard. Instead of cocaine it could be a nuclear weapon.
It almost writes itself.
This technique is almost 10 years old —only the additional use of GPS and most lately new techniques to diminish the thermal signature of the exhaust is new —they run it past cold ocean water before it is vented.
I don’t know what % are totally automated, but probably the figure is still low, something that will probably change. The terminal leg of the journey features very low speeds for better stealth.
Traditionally crews were kidnapped fisherman with an enforcer aboard, and the trip was one-way for the vessel, supposedly with the crew flying back home, although you can imagine if they were troublesome enough then the journey for many could also be one-way.
A dirty rumor is that logistics for the construction of some of these vessels comes from Middle-Eastern non-state actors.
Most cocaine imported into the USA is done using this technique now.
How long will it be until one of these things loaded with a few tons of explosive sneaks into an American harbor?
Take it one step further.A Weapon of Mass Destruction(Nuclear Device).
Park it next to an NG carrier and they won’t need a nuke.
These are no doubt being build with Plan Columbia money.
I do not think so. This is strictly a drug cartel financed. They have plenty of cash for these types of projects. Now, its whether the government knows about these subs being built.
“Family values don’t stop at the Rio Grande”
Park it next to an NG carrier and they won’t need a nuke.
It was 100 feet long. The naval architects were apparently imported from the former Evil Empire.
Those Russians are getting paid very well for what they are doing.
Or an Oil rig. Easy non moving target.
Just what did they think those SWAT teams were capable of doing? Protecting us from high pressure blowouts? Hardly!
Estimated value per load: 4 X $25 milion = $100 Million.
Therefore, a $1 M investment (approx 1%, and a great ROI no matter how you cut it) in each sub is minuscule, compared to the possible profits.
As an aside, with the type of profits involved in the drug trade, I doubt we will ever see any substantial victory in the ridiculous "War on Drugs!"
Interesting to note that it is apparently easier for the Narcos to infiltrate their product over the Mexican border than to use subs to smuggle it into the U.S.
I predicted this ploy more than 10 years ago as US countermeasures against surface boats became more effective.
My next prediction was the use of gliders. Gliders have minimal metal parts, are made of fiberglass and fly slow, and therefor have negligible radar signature so they are almost invisible to our countermeasures based on radar.
Gliders can soar or be towed to over 10,000 ft near the border and with an enhanced glide ratio (many gliders have 50 to 1 or better) can go cross country on one descent into our interior for at least 100 miles—far ourstripping our border coverage which is predicated on stopping smuggling near the actual border.
If the pilot can use thermals to regain height, the glide can be extended almost indefinitely as long as the Sun can heat the land below. Glider flights of hundreds of miles are common.
Another advantage is they don’t have to use roads or obvious trails, so they can land ‘em where we ain’t near predesignated GPS rendezvous points for off-road vehicles.
It’s only a coincidence, but one motto of glider pilots is:
“Get high and stay high.”
Imperial Beach Ca., lots of washed up stuff.
Send a fleet of them packed with boom boom to Iran.