Thursday, March 31, 2011

Spilling Over?

As federal officials talk tough, local officers express concern about cartel violence We have a mess on the Arizona-Mexico border, and the people of Arizona can't make an honest assessment of it without pondering the concept of spillover. The word has become a mantra that appears in just about every pronouncement by the feds, and it gets repeated by a compliant mainstream media. "I don't know how people are defining spillover, but it's here now and ongoing," says Nogales Police Chief Jeff Kirkham. "The fingers of the cartels reach all the way to the Tucson and the Phoenix metropolitan areas, and other states." The conflict in Southern Arizona is a fight to control American land. We're experiencing constant incursions by armed cartel soldiers. In a Washington Post story last May, Robert Boatright, deputy chief of Border Patrol's Tucson Sector, said border agents here have "close to daily" encounters with armed smugglers. These are hardened men—mostly "prior deports," as Border Patrol calls them—who know Arizona's borderlands as well as their own faces. They're motivated enough to use our remotest lands as contraband highways, and athletic enough to vanish into the canyons when agents give chase. And if challenged on the hugely profitable routes they've fought and shed blood to "own" for their particular gang, they will shoot. This became clear with the murder of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, part of an elite BORTAC team sent into the Peck Canyon Corridor outside of Nogales on Dec. 14. "Certainly, most Americans don't know these incursions go on all the time, but they do," says Kirkham. "It's sad that conditions on our border have gotten to where we have to send in special interdiction teams. But these incursions are a significant threat that needs to be solved."...more

No comments: