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Mexico denied military providing drug smuggling

by John Robie / January 25, 2006 9:59 AM PST

protection for Monday's marijuana operations into Texas.

''If it rattles like a snake and looks like a snake, it's probably a damn snake,'' Hudspeth County Sheriff Arvin West said. ''There's no doubt it's Mexican military.''

''Mexico issues border ban

Web Posted: 01/25/2006 12:00 AM CST

Mariano Castillo
Express-News Border Bureau

A day after as many as 20 armed men in military fatigues crossed the Rio Grande into Texas before being chased back by U.S. authorities, the Mexican government ordered its troops not to come within 2 kilometers of the border.

While the Mexican Foreign Affairs Ministry and Defense Ministry denied their military had a role in providing protection for Monday's marijuana smuggling operation into Hudspeth County, the government said its military wouldn't be permitted in the border zone without authorization.

The face-off along the Rio Grande between the drug smugglers and U.S. law enforcement officials came just days after Mexican and U.S. officials downplayed news reports that U.S. Border Patrol agents have occasionally seen what appear to be Mexican army units in the United States

The encounter happened at about 2 p.m. east of the town of Fort Hancock.

Sheriff's deputies, later joined by DPS troopers and Border Patrol agents, spotted and tried to stop three sport utility vehicles, which fled toward the border.

A Cadillac Escalade in the convoy blew a tire and its driver fled, West said. Authorities found 1,475 pounds of marijuana inside the vehicle.

The two remaining SUVs made it to a spot known as Neely's Crossing, about 15 downstream from Fort Hancock, West said.

There they met a military-style Humvee on the U.S. side, armed with a heavy machine gun, which quickly crossed the shallow water into Mexico, deputies reported.

A Toyota 4Runner made it across the river, but a Ford Expedition that followed it got stuck.

''It was on their side of the river, so we just sat there and watched them,'' West said.

What they saw was uniformed men guarding the vehicles with automatic weapons.

After three failed tries to tow the stuck Expedition with the Humvee, men in civilian clothing unloaded what looked like bundles of marijuana and set the SUV ablaze, West said.

All the U.S. authorities could do was take photos, which West said was evidence that military or pseudo-military crossings do occur.

''The government of Mexico denies entirely that this incident involved the Mexican military,'' said the Foreign Ministry statement, issued Tuesday. ''It was done by organized crime, including drug traffickers who are known to use military clothing and equipment.''

The Mexican Defense Ministry said it has begun an investigation but ''there were no Humvees assigned to the fort at Ciudad Ju

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I think they should send some antitank, shoulder fired
by Kiddpeat / January 25, 2006 10:08 AM PST

missles down there. That should allow us to inspect these vehicles before they get back into Mexico.

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Yep, 1 Tx Ranger + 1 missle launcher = solved convoy
by John Robie / January 26, 2006 1:40 AM PST

Our Governor should ask the Texas National Guard to loan missle or machine gun firepower to the Texas Rangers and Department of Public Safety Officers (State Police), since the Feds & Pres Bush apparently don't want to upset Pres Fox by properly arming the Border Patrol.

Our morning newspaper continues with front page news of this incident. Note photo in below link of men unloaded bundles Monday from an SUV that became stuck in the Rio Grande. Also see military type vehicle in background.

"Basically, if we tried to do anything, it would've been suicide for us," said Tammen, noting the U.S side of the border was wide open, with no cover. "We were outgunned and outmanned."

"Web Posted: 01/26/2006 12:00 AM CST

Mariano Castillo, Dane Schiller and Hern

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There was a news story on CNN
by TONI H / January 26, 2006 2:03 AM PST
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Maybe we should collapse the tunnel but
by Steven Haninger / January 26, 2006 7:28 AM PST

wait until it's fully occupied first. Devil

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Steven, I think
by Glenda / January 26, 2006 8:06 AM PST

SE is getting to you!!! Devil LOL

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And you keep telling me
by Diana Forum moderator / January 26, 2006 5:04 AM PST

that legalizing and regulating these drugs is worse than this.

Very interesting.


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(NT) (NT) Who me? Never have, wrong person.
by John Robie / January 26, 2006 5:18 AM PST
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(NT) (NT) It is if we take the necessary steps to curb the violen
by dirtyrich / January 26, 2006 5:28 AM PST
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It is much worse. I don't know what you see as being so bad
by Kiddpeat / January 26, 2006 5:45 AM PST

in this situation.

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Texan friend of mine says the Rangers
by drpruner / January 26, 2006 7:17 AM PST

wanted to handle Vernon Little/Waco but were overruled by the Feds. He says the outcome would have been different.

BTW I thought Rangers were part of Dept. Pub. Safety.

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by John Robie / January 26, 2006 8:11 AM PST

in 1935 the Texas Rangers were incorporated with the DPS. The Rangers are a seperate division from the DPS Highway Patrol (Troopers). To apply for the Rangers an
applicant must be currently employed with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) in the position of a commissioned officer with the rank of at least Trooper II. Eight years police experience is required in order to be eligible to compete for the position of Texas Ranger.
Little recruiting has ever been necessary. It is not unusual for more than 200 officers to apply for only a handful of openings.

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They still need to own a horse?
by drpruner / January 26, 2006 8:23 AM PST
In reply to: Yes,

My son and I used to listen to ''Tales of the Texas Rangers'' radio shows rebroadcast on KNX in LA. We thought they were very good because of the realism, like the old ''Dragnet.''
First time we went to Amarillo we tried to find the Ranger barracks, but a local told us it had been closed. The Rangers in many regions now work out of their homes.

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Not sure if horse still required.
by John Robie / January 26, 2006 8:53 AM PST

Our Sheriff's department does have a mounted division they use for searches/tracking.

The Tx Rangers have a very good lab and criminal investigation division that is called on quite frequently. They have investigated crimes ranging from murder to political corruption, have kept the peace during riots, acted as detectives, protected the Texas governor, and tracked down fugitives.

Another of the things the Rangers do is suppress all criminal activity in any given area, when it is apparent that the local officials are unwilling or unable to maintain law and order.

There also is/was a TV program called Walker, Texas Ranger with Chuck Norris which I have only watched a few times.

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Ranger, Texas Walker
by drpruner / January 26, 2006 10:44 PM PST

not likely to have been too accurate. Happy

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"rank of at least Trooper II. Eight years police experience"
by drpruner / January 26, 2006 10:43 PM PST
In reply to: Yes,

IOW each Ranger no doubt qualified to act independently as required. Good system.

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Hmm...Vernon (David Koresh)/Waco..
by John Robie / January 26, 2006 8:38 AM PST

Well, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) raided Mount Carmel resulting in four agents and five Davidians killed, then the FBI took over for almost the next 2 months.

Yes, I personally believe that the Texas Rangers could have handled it with better final results if they were the initial ones before the ATF. I doubt they asked to handle it after the ATF raided, as the wheels were already in motion by the Feds.

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(NT) (NT) That's what I meant, thanks.
by drpruner / January 26, 2006 10:40 PM PST
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And Clinton denied his affair with Lewinski too.
by C1ay / January 26, 2006 7:56 AM PST

If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck it's probably a duck....

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Makes me wonder
by Glenda / January 26, 2006 8:10 AM PST

how much of a kickback Fox gets?? And ya know the Military help they are getting is receiving big bucks for the protection!

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However, since Mexico insists they were drug runners, they
by Kiddpeat / January 26, 2006 10:28 AM PST

won't object to some heavier artillery taking them out. We would be doing the Mexican government a favor.

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Hard to believe latest development....
by John Robie / January 27, 2006 10:13 AM PST

This is still a front page article in our newspaper today:
"Mexican official hints GI's behind border incident"

Mexico foreign secretary Luis Ernesto Derbez suggesting U.S. troops might have dressed as Mexican soldiers in a botched mission to smuggle marijuana across the border. A U.S. official dismissed as baseless his claim...."Those comments do not merit a response," the official said.


Mexico-U.S. relations deteriorating

What is also interesting was plans by a Mexican governmental commission to distribute maps showing highways, water tanks and rescue beacons in the Arizona desert to aid illegals migrants in crossing over to the U.S.
On Wednesday, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff condemned in "the strongest terms" those plans saying, "This effort will entice more people to cross, leading to more migrant deaths and the further enrichment of the criminal human trafficking rings that prey on the suffering of others,"


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We have friends who live in Mexico. They tell us that no
by Kiddpeat / January 27, 2006 12:08 PM PST

one trusts either the police or the army. Their main interaction with the Mexican people consists of shake downs. It is a farce to claim that the Mexican army is not involved.

What I have trouble understanding is why President Bush does not act to end this behaviour. It seems like the feds are trying to cover it up.

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