Mex­i­can drug wars threaten United States

‘Deadly force’ spills over bor­der

The Washington Times Weekly - - Politics -

An es­ca­lat­ing turf fight be­tween war­ring drug car­tels in Mex­ico is spread­ing into the United States with fed­eral of­fi­cials warn­ing that deadly shootouts and am­bushes along the south­west­ern bor­der pose a se­ri­ous threat to both U.S. law en­force­ment and Amer­i­can cit­i­zens, ac­cord­ing to a con­fi­den­tial multi-agency gov­ern­ment re­port.

The Aug. 29 re­port pre­dicts a rise in the use of “deadly force” against U.S. po­lice of­fi­cials, first re­spon­ders and res­i­dents along the bor­der, and fur­ther spillage of drug-gang vi­o­lence deeper into the United States.

Writ­ten by the Ari­zona Counter Ter­ror­ism In­for­ma­tion Cen­ter (Ac­TIC) and the High-In­ten­sity Drug Traf­fick­ing Area (HIDTA) In­ves­tiga­tive Sup­port Cen­ter, the re­port also said the drug car­tels are ex­pected to hire mem­bers of deadly street gangs now in this coun­try, in­clud­ing Mara Sal­va­trucha (MS-13), to “carry out acts of vi­o­lence against car­tel mem­bers in the U.S.”

“U.S. law en­force­ment and first re­spon­ders need to main­tain a height­ened aware­ness at all times,” the re­port said.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, a copy of which was ob­tained by The Wash­ing­ton Times, car­tel mem­bers and po­lice of­fi­cials in Mex­ico, in a bid to spare their fam­i­lies from the vi­o­lence that has over­whelmed many Mex­i­can bor­der towns, could be­gin re­lo­cat­ing them to the United States, re­sult- ing in more homi­cides and home in­va­sions along the south­west­ern bor­der, in­creased avail­abil­ity of high-pow­ered weapons to Mex­i­can drug smug­glers al­ready in the U.S., and the po­ten­tial for the fam­ily mem­bers to con­tinue drug op­er­a­tions in the U.S.

The re­port also pre­dicted an in­crease in as­saults against il­le­gal im­mi­grants and ri­val car­tel mem­bers in this coun­try, sug­gested that the pres­ence of car­tel mem­bers in the U.S. would al­low them to gather in­tel­li­gence on po­lice en­force­ment ac­tiv­i­ties, and would fa­cil­i­tate their “trans­por t of weapons and cur­rency south­bound in trac­tor trail­ers.”

While not widely re­ported through­out most of the U.S., the in­creased bor­der vi­o­lence is not new to the fed­eral, state and lo­cal law en­force­ment au­thor­i­ties as­signed along the 1,951-mile U.S.-Mex­ico bor­der.

Thou­sands more U.S. Bor­der Pa­trol agents have been as­signed to the re­gion as part of a Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity strat­egy to gain “op­er­a­tional con­trol” of the bor­der. As a re­sult of the in­creased pres­sure, the car­tels have re­sorted to more vi­o­lent means of guar­an­tee­ing their drug loads into the United States.

Shawn P. Mo­ran, a 10-year U.S. Bor­der Pa­trol vet­eran who serves as vice pres­i­dent of the Na­tional Bor­der Pa­trol Coun­cil Lo­cal 1613, added that the drug gangs are heav­ily armed and well-equipped, and can eas­ily out­man and out­gun U.S. au­thor­i­ties.

“They’ve got weapons, high­tech ra­dios, com­put­ers, cell

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