It’s Thursday?

It’s been a busy week. Electioneering and the election earlier this week seemed to just soak up the time. The aftermath yesterday…checking the winners and losers, was busy as well. Some of my favorites won, some lost. It’s been a whirlwind and time has leaped in passing.

I woke up this morning thinking it was Wednesday. I had lain in bed thinking over the election results and some impacts when it occurred to me that I was repeating yesterday. 

That’s when I woke up.

***

In the run-up to the election, current events has been pushed aside.  Imagine my surprise to learn that Mexico has surrendered to the drug cartels!  Mexico’s PRI party regained control in the last election. Once in office, they promptly surrendered to the de facto government that rules large portions of the country.

Mexico Dissolves Its FBI, Moves to Legalize Drugs

by Chriss W. Street 1 Aug 2012

In a stunning development, President-elect Enrique Peña and his Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), who won control of Mexico’s government on July 1st, moved to dissolve the Agencia Federal de Investigación (AFI).  

Modeled after the United States FBI, the AFI was founded in 2001 to crack down on Mexico’s pervasive government corruption and drug trafficking. With rival drug cartels murdering between 47,500 to 67,000 Mexicans over the last six years, the move by the PRI represents the total surrender of Mexico’s sovereignty back to the money and violence of Mexico’s two main drug cartels, the Sinaloa Federation and Los Zetas. Coupled with the Obama Administration’s “Dreamer” Executive Order curtailing deportations of illegal aliens, a hands-off policy on both sides of the border foreshadows a huge increase in “narco-trafficking” violence and corruption flooding into the United States.    

The PRI ruled Mexico with an iron fist for 71 years between 1929 and 2000.  Although the PRI claimed they were the socialist peasant’s party, they operated as a corrupt political organization that siphoned off wealth from Mexico’s nationalized oil industry with bribes for protecting the drug cartels that trafficked in marijuana and narcotics into the United States. As a glaring example of the level of official PRI corruption, in 1982 the oil workers’ union donated a $2 million house as a “gift” to President López Portillo. Mexicans often joke: “Our Presidents are elected as millionaires, but they leave office as billionaires.” 

But on December 1, 2000, Vicente Fox, the former Chief Executive of Coca-Cola in Mexico and founder of the Partido Acción Nacional (PAN), was elected President of Mexico. Mr. Fox ran on a platform of reforming Mexico’s pervasive police corruption, and his first move as President was to form the AFI. Under the leadership of President Fox and his party’s successor, President Felipe Calderón, the AFI grew over the next 11 years into a 5,000-member force with an international reputation as a premier drug enforcement agency.  The U.S. provided extensive equipment and training to the AFI. The AFI reciprocated by capturing numerous drug kingpins and extraditing them to face criminal prosecution for murder and drug distribution in the U.S. 

Over the first six months of 2012, the Sinaloa Federation and Los Zetas carried out a vicious war across Mexico to expand their areas of operations and intimidate the local population. Both cartels engaged in “information operations campaigns” by displaying large numbers of dismembered bodies in public places. The shock value of body dumps was designed to broadcast that the cartels are the dominant authority in Mexico. 

The AFI under President Felipe Calderón retaliated against the major drug cartel kingpins’ horrific bloodshed by partnering with the U.S. and Guatemala to capture Horst Walther Overdick in Guatemala, followed by the capture of Francisco Treviño and Carlos Alejandro “El Fabiruchis” Gutierrez Escobedo and the killing of Gerardo “El Guerra” Guerra Valdez in Mexico, along with the capture of José Treviño in the U.S.

Two days after the election, President-elect Peña came to the U.S. to announce that he would “welcome debate on the issue of drug legalization and regulation in Mexico.”  In an interview by PBS News Hour, President-elect Pena clearly stated:

I’m in favor of opening a new debate in the strategy in the way we fight drug trafficking. It is quite clear that after several years of this fight against drug trafficking, we have more drug consumption, drug use and drug trafficking. That means we are not moving in the right direction. Things are not working.

These are “code words” to signal the PRI intends to cut a profitable deal with the cartels to legalize drugs in exchange for collecting tax revenue on drug sales. The month before, Congressman James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) called a Congressional hearing to accuse Peña Nieto of advocating “a reversion” back to the old PRI policies of “turning a blind eye to the cartels” as long as they weren’t perpetrating grisly violence.   

President-elect Peña’s announcement of the PRI’s new cozy relationship with the drug cartels directly followed President Obama’s announcement of his “Dreamer” Executive Order curtailing deportations of “undocumented” aliens. These actions have caused major alarm among rank-and-file border agents that the Sinaloa Federation and Los Zetas are now unrestrained to flood into the United States with drugs and violence. In a joint union press conference by the customs agents and the border patrol unions, Chris Crane, President of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council (ICE) warned:  

It‘s impossible to understand the full scope of the administration’s changes, but what we are seeing so far concerns us greatly… There is no burden for the alien to prove anything.

No good will come from this. The security of our southern border has just become more critical than ever before.

***

Claire McCaskill ran an ad prior to the Missouri primary declaring Todd Akin to be, “a dangerous Tea Party extremist,” and, “outside the mainstream.” Various pundits believe she ran the ads because she, McCaskill, believed Akin was the easiest ‘Pub opponent to beat for the Senate.  Whatever her logic, it appears to have helped Akin win some votes in the primary. A quick scan of grassroots websites across the state appeared to confirm the opinions of those pundits.

Personally, I think Ol’ Claire made a strategic mistake.  Breitbart TV has this report.

Claire McCaskill Says Conservatives Are ‘Dangerous,’ ‘Outside of Mainstream’

by Dana Loesch 9 Aug 2012, 2:53 AM PDT

Claire McCaskill’s campaign wasted no time in attacking Todd Akin after his senate primary win. This evening McCaskill sent an email to supporters claiming that Akin is a “dangerous” tea party extremist:

Akin’s Rap Sheet Makes It Clear: Tea Party Congressman’s Outside Of The Mainstream Views, Dangerous Policies Are Wrong for Missouri, From his record to his rhetoric, everything about Todd Akin’s Tea Party policies are outside of the mainstream and dangerous for Missouri families.  

When Missouri Republicans nominated him last night,  they pinned their Senate hopes on a far right,  Tea Party Congressman whose candidacy diminishes the party’s prospects for November.

This coming from McCaskill, a Senator so far removed from the will of her people that after she championed for Obamacare in Missouri, 76% of voters voted to repudiate it via Proposition C. Prop C, or the Health Care Freedom Act, was the first legislative challenge to Obamacare. 

McCaskill again rubber-stamped the Obama agenda when she sided with him against Missouri jobs and coal by voting in favor of the MACT rule and effectively shutting the doors of numerous coal plants. McCaskill once claimed she hated coal, odd considering she represents a big coal state, the industry of which employs thousands. McCaskill has rubber-stamped the Obama agenda on most every policy that would adversely affect Missouri coal and jobs. 

McCaskill cheerleads for an administration that has quadrupled the deficit, run women from the job pool, and devalued the dollar, while trying to persuade seniors that the government knows best how handle their social security. McCaskill has never addressed why government-run social security is the best when that very same government spent it all. The idea that individuals should have a choice between their own responsibility or government irresponsibility is “extremist” to the incumbent. 

McCaskill also attacked Akin over oil subsidies while keeping mum on her support for green tech subsidies. (Akin, in fact, has before said on my show that such subsidies should cease.)

The Democrat incumbent is desperate to cast this race as Harry Reid v Sharon Angle except McCaskill has been trailing in the polls for the past several states, her state repudiated her efforts to cheerlead for Obama, and unlike Reid, McCaskill is attempting to legislate Missouri into the poorhouse with job-killing regulations. Dangerous and “outside of the mainstream?” That sounds like McCaskill.

One way or another, McCaskill will get what she asked for.

***

The Washington Times has a piece about illegal aliens that is putting to bed the excuse they are all productive and here only for jobs.  Truth be told, almost half are on the welfare rolls.  Just think of the savings that could be made if we just cleaned the rolls and limited welfare to US citizens?  Our parasite class is big enough as it is without importing more.

Slow path to progress for U.S. immigrants

43% on welfare after 20 years

By Stephen Dinan – The Washington Times, Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Immigrants lag behind native-born Americans on most measures of economic well-being — even those who have been in the U.S. the longest, according to a report from the Center for Immigration Studies, which argues that full assimilation is a more complex task than overcoming language or cultural differences.

The study, which covers all immigrants, legal and illegal, and their U.S.-born children younger than 18, found that immigrants tend to make economic progress by most measures the longer they live in the U.S. but lag well behind native-born Americans on factors such as poverty, health insurance coverage and homeownership.

The study, based on 2010 and 2011 census data, found that 43 percent of immigrants who have been in the U.S. at least 20 years were using welfare benefits, a rate that is nearly twice as high as native-born Americans and nearly 50 percent higher than recent immigrants.

The report was released at a time when both major presidential candidates have backed policies that would make it easier to immigrate legally and would boost the numbers of people coming to the U.S.

Federal law requires that the government deny immigrant visas to potential immigrants who are likely to be unable to support themselves and thereby become public charges.

On Tuesday, a handful of Republican senators wrote to the Homeland Security and State departments asking them to explain why they don’t consider whether potential immigrants would use many of the nearly 80 federal welfare programs when they evaluate visa applications.

Neither department responded to messages Tuesday seeking a response to the senators’ letter.

There is more in the complete article. I urge you to read it for yourself.

***

I read some reports today that Citibank, AT&T, and GE are shifting the majority of their contributions to the GOP.  In addition, so are their employees. Usually these corporations suck up to whomever they think will be the winner. They’ve made cozening an art form. Now, they’re abandoning Obama in the hope to gain favor when Romney is in charge.

Corporations are not the only ones. Unions see the writing on the wall, too. The United Mine Workers Association (UMWA), the coal miners union is sitting this election out.

In politics as well as the inevitable sycophants, self-interest is always the top priority.

Mike Medsker liked this post

The War on our Southern Border

I’ve written, from time to time, about the ongoing civil war in Mexico.  Our state media consistently fails to report that war south of the border and rarely when it spills over into the US.  When humans heads were found recently near a school, and bodies were dumped in Vera Cruz, I didn’t see it mentioned anywhere outside of the internet.

Now, it is becoming apparent that the drug cartels have moved troops across the border into the US.  Some speculate it is to allow them a chance to regroup and refit.  Others believe they are here to establish a beachhead in the US.

Last year, General Barry McCaffrey and General Bob Scales, issued a report about the danger on the border.


Mexico’s Narco-cartels Represent ‘Strategic Level’ of War Against US

By: Anthony Kimery
09/27/11 
On Monday, Staples backed up his claims with the release of a comprehensive 182-page report that asserted it’s the first report “to conclude that [Mexican crime] cartels are following a twofold strategic plan” that is the equivalent of strategic-level war against the US.
Commissioned by Staples last June, the report was prepared by retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey, a former US drug czar and Southern Command commander of US troops in Latin America, and Gen. Robert Scales, former commandant of the United States Army War College.
McCaffrey and Scales concluded that “the bottom line” is “Mexican cartels seek to create a ‘sanitary zone’ inside the Texas border – one county deep – that will provide sanctuary from Mexican law enforcement and, at the same time, enable the cartels to transform Texas’ border counties into narcotics transshipment points for continued transport and distribution into the continental United States.”
And this, McCaffrey and Scales emphasized, represents “narco-terrorism at the strategic-level of war” and directly threatens US national and hemispheric security.
The report, Texas Border Security: A Strategic Military Assessment, further concluded that “Texas is the state most vulnerable to the spread of instability and violence in Mexico.”
Staples said the “report is the culmination of  many efforts that started with rural farmers and ranchers bringing pleas for a secure border to me.”
The 82nd  Texas Legislature “recognized this critical issue and the numerous accounts of cross-border violence and tasked the Texas Department of Agriculture via House Bill 4, to conduct ‘an assessment of the impact of illegal activity along the Texas-Mexico border on rural landowners and the agriculture industry and working in conjunction with other appropriate entities to develop recommendations to enhance border security,’” Staples said in announcing the report.
In response, Staples requested that McCaffrey and Scales “develop and recommend a military-style strategy and operational and tactical requirements to secure the Texas portion of the US-Mexico border,” and “requested specific information related to the financial, manpower, technology and other resources needed to secure the Texas-Mexico border; and ways in which the roles and resources of US federal agencies could be optimally deployed to facilitate implementation of these recommendations.”

 I wouldn’t hold my breath.  The dems and liberals in Washington have been quite successful ignoring the issue.  First they fought any measure to secure the border.  Then, under pressure, they agreed to an ineffectual “border fence” and finally, when Obama gained office, cut off funds to build that fence.

The story continues.  In an interview with Greta Van Susteren on FOX News, Major General Bob Scales, the co-author of the report provided more information.

The interview turned to Cartel activity in the US and a report from the El Paso Medical Center documenting the treatment of 150 trauma cases from Mexico for treatment in the medical center.  Greta Van Susteren stated, referring the cartel acitivty on the US side of the border…

VAN SUSTEREN: It’s even bleeding over that (to the US) way.
SCALES: It absolutely is. And it’s not just in the cities along the border. It’s in these border counties that are very thinly populated, where the cartels have established routes of egress into Texas and transshipment points and houses. Ranchers and farmers are having their ranches violated, breaking into their homes, shooting at them. Ranchers are selling their property. Ranch hands are quitting out of fear or from being threatened by the cartels. It’s really becoming increasingly out of hand.
VAN SUSTEREN: It’s my impression that’s United States isn’t taking this seriously, maybe Texas is, maybe Arizona, but the United States is not taking as a country what’s going on in Mexico with the level of intensity I think it should. I know Secretary of State Hillary Clinton described it as Colombia 20 years ago and got rebuked by the president. Am I exaggerating this?
SCALES: I don’t think you are at all. I think part of the problem is we haven’t done a good job of telling the rest of America how Arizona and Texas affects them directly. Remember now, there are 18,000 cartel members operating in Texas, but their –
VAN SUSTEREN: There are 18,000 cartel members operating in Texas?
SCALES: A full army division of gang members, the foot soldiers for cartel –
VAN SUSTEREN: In Texas?
SCALES: In Texas, and thousands more in American cities, all in this scheme to distribute drugs throughout the United States. This is not just a Texas problem. This is a national problem. And we need to make the rest of the nation aware of it.
VAN SUSTEREN: I guess I’ve always been intrigued by the fact that one of the worst cartels are the Zetas. They are ex-military, essentially the special forces who have gone rogue.
SCALES: It’s very sad, and they’re increasingly violent. Two years ago this was a criminal enterprise that was done for profit. Increasingly today it’s just sheer, raw violence inflicted on the citizens of Texas, and that’s why they’re worried.
VAN SUSTEREN: I don’t like to overstate it, but your description, the 18,000 in Texas, the number of people around the city, that it doesn’t differ that much in our mind to our thoughts and fears of Al Qaeda originally, having cells around. I mean, this is not flying a plane into a building or a dirty bomb, but this is drugs, which are killing people, and there’s violence associated with it.

The cartels have the equivalent of a full division of troops in Texas!  If that doesn’t scare you, what will?

Washington’s neglect in protecting our borders is near criminal.  If we cannot be secure within our borders from external threats, we have no national security.  As I’ve said before, the survival of our country is to precious to remain in the hands of democrats and liberals.  They, their party, and their agenda have failed miserably. Their incompetence cannot be allowed to continue.                    

The Continuing Civil war in Mexico, Pt II

I’ve posted a number of times, here, here and here, about the Civil War next door. Our FedGov continues to turn a blind eye to that conflict and in some cases by omission, has aided the drug cartels. The dems refusal to protect our borders—specifically the southern one, is a planned action in the blind attempt to gain more illegal votes and to gain support by our legal Hispanic residents.

The dems are unconcerned that trading security for votes is a direct threat to our country.        

Anyone Notice The War Next Door?

Border: Remember when al-Qaida targeted tribal leaders and local officials to assert power in the Iraq War? Today, the story repeats itself on our own doorstep. But incredibly, the Beltway crowd doesn’t seem to care.
Mexico’s war against drug and alien-smuggling cartels grows ever more similar to the horrors of Afghanistan and Iraq. Beheadings, stonings, car bombs and terrorist attacks speak to a lust for power every bit as implacable as that of the Afghanistan’s Taliban or the insurgents of Iraq.
The cartels may seem to be just a police problem, but Mexico’s own officials know better: President Felipe Calderon warns that everything about their actions says they mean to take over.
But even with such a nearby threat, there are no U.S. crisis task forces or special envoys. The Northern Command hasn’t been bolstered. The unbuilt border fence is one excuse after another, hostage to domestic and electoral politics.
President Obama can’t even be bothered to visit the borderlands in Arizona, where, for the first time in history, U.S. control and sovereignty over our own territory is being ceded to foreign cartels.
Does anyone care that a cartel has threatened to destroy a dam in Texas? Oregon officials report huge new cartel marijuana fields on a scale never seen earlier.
The Los Angeles Police Department even warns that five cartels have set up logistics operations in America’s second-largest city.
It should be a national security crisis of the highest priority, right?
To Washington, it’s little more than a secondary back-burner issue. Our commitment to help is minuscule — about $400 million a year, way less than the estimated $8 billion to $25 billion that Latin American cartels make in U.S. drug profits each year.
As Mexico’s house burns, Washington interest is more attuned to whether Mexico’s military follows Marquess of Queensberry rules than actually winning the war.
This month, the State Department withheld $26 million in U.S. war aid for Mexico based on its assessment of Mexico’s human rights “progress,” apparently completely oblivious to the crisis.
Meanwhile, as Mexicans fight and die to keep drugs out of the U.S., Washington turns a blind eye to increasingly brazen transgressions of federal marijuana laws in U.S. states, even as it prosecutes Arizona for undercutting immigrant-smuggling cartels.

There’s more information at the IBD website here.

And don’t forget—an open border also allows Islamic and other terrorists free access to the interior of our country. This is an indictment against the democrat party and the Ruling Class.

Mexico’s Civil War Continues

 More evidence of Mexico’s civil war came to light this week with the discovery of 72 bodies of non-Mexicans just 90 miles south of the US border.  There was one survivor who, though wounded, managed to find help and lead elements of the Mexican Marines to the massacre site.

There are two crucial elements in the last sentence.  “Managed to find help” and “Mexican Marines.”  In the first example, the survivor was turned away a number of times by local residents who feared retaliation from the Zeta Cartel.  He finally found help at a military checkpoint. It was reported that the Zetas were the ones responsible for the murders.  In the second example, it is the Mexican Navy and Marines who lead the fight against the drug cartels.  The Army has been infiltrated and cannot be trusted.  

In fact, the Army supplies most of the cartels weapons and ammunition, not American gun shows and firearms dealers.  It’s relevant to note that the US government is the prime supplier of arms and ammunition to the Mexican Army so indirectly, the US government is the arms supplier to the drug cartels. 

As usual, the international leftist, like Amnesty International, blames the Mexican government rather than the Cartels.

The case “will turn into an emblem of the capacity or incapacity of Mexican officials to face up” to migrant abuses, Alberto Herrera, director of Amnesty International Mexico, told AFP on Wednesday.

Around half a million clandestine migrants cross Mexico each year, mostly from Central America, according to Mexico’s Human Rights Commission.
Some 10,000 undocumented migrants were abducted in Mexico over six months from September 2008 to February 2009, the commission reported last year. — Yahoo News.

The Investor’s Business Daily editorial on August 26, 2010, opined on this continuing situation.

Unfortunately, Amnesty International is busy blaming Mexico, not the cartels, for the killings. It absurdly claims Mexico should have done more to protect the illegals — we suppose by providing armed escorts across the Texas border.

 Indeed, Mexico’s now in roughly the same spot as Arizona. Illegal immigration, after all, is illegal in Mexico, too. Even as Mexico encourages its own citizens to head north because of the remittances they send home, it discourages other nations’ citizens from doing the same, apprehending 43,000 illegals last year alone.
This massacre should make Mexico rethink its claim that Arizona is somehow an enemy, or that legalizing drugs will stop horrors like this. Mexico is a sovereign state, and if it wants to win this war — which it’s now losing — then any state that fights cartels is an ally.
Fact is, illegal immigrant smuggling is done by the same evil people who traffic drugs and want to topple the Mexican state.
The same monsters who hang bodies from Mexican bridges, set off car bombs in Juarez, hurl grenades into tourist bars (as happened in Puerto Vallarta Thursday), kill mayors, servicemen and policemen, and roll human heads onto dance floors, are the criminals with a monopoly smuggling illegal immigrants into the U.S.
So to encourage illegal immigration is about as smart as encouraging drug consumption.

Obama and Janet Reno are failing in their first responsibility—safeguarding the nation.  If that isn’t grounds for impeachment and removal from office, what do we have to do?  Wait for a nuke to be smuggled over the border and detonated in some US city?  Any president who fails to safeguard this country should be removed from office regardless to party affiliation.  Any political party to supports “open borders” is a clear and present danger to our national welfare.

U.S. Bureau of Land Management cedes Arizona border to drug lords.

While Obama appears on television and shed crocodile tears over the Gulf oil spill, the US Government has, for all practical purposes, ceded an 80-mile, three county deep strip of our Arizona border to Mexico and the drug lords. (H/T to Rick Shay.)

It’s a prime example of Obama’s and the democrat’s incompetency and apply demonstrates they are intentionally ignoring the invasion of illegals and drug-runners through Mexico. The photo below is of a Bureau of Land Management sign 80 miles from the border.


Fox News interviewed Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu who spoke about the federal government’s abandonment of the border and his county.


For those of you who may have difficulty with YouTube, here’s an abridged transcript of the interview.

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu: Quite frankly I’m telling you as a sheriff that we don’t control that part of the county. My county is larger than the state of Connecticut and we need support from the federal government. It’s their job to secure the border and they haven’t done it. In fact President Obama suspended the construction of the fence.


FOX News reporter:
Would you like to see some of the president’s outrage about the oil spill and some of the butt-kicking that he’s talked about doing applied there on the border as well?


Sheriff Paul Babeu:
Even with that, you say one thing and then you’re out at a fundraiser in California and you don’t go to the funeral of the people who died in the explosion. You know its one thing to say something slick on television in a ten second sound bite but we need action. And, it’s shameful that we as the most powerful nation on earth can win wars and liberate countries throughout history yet we can’t even secure our own border.

This territory is land the United States purchased from Mexico known as the Gadsen Purchase. Contrary to the belief of some, we did not seize this territory from Mexico by force of arms. We paid for it. It is ours and we mean to keep it!

U.S. Bureau of Land Management cedes Arizona border to drug lords.

While Obama appears on television and shed crocodile tears over the Gulf oil spill, the US Government has, for all practical purposes, ceded an 80-mile, three county deep strip of our Arizona border to Mexico and the drug lords. (H/T to Rick Shay.)

It’s a prime example of Obama’s and the democrat’s incompetency and apply demonstrates they are intentionally ignoring the invasion of illegals and drug-runners through Mexico. The photo below is of a Bureau of Land Management sign 80 miles from the border.


Fox News interviewed Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu who spoke about the federal government’s abandonment of the border and his county.


For those of you who may have difficulty with YouTube, here’s an abridged transcript of the interview.

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu: Quite frankly I’m telling you as a sheriff that we don’t control that part of the county. My county is larger than the state of Connecticut and we need support from the federal government. It’s their job to secure the border and they haven’t done it. In fact President Obama suspended the construction of the fence.


FOX News reporter:
Would you like to see some of the president’s outrage about the oil spill and some of the butt-kicking that he’s talked about doing applied there on the border as well?


Sheriff Paul Babeu:
Even with that, you say one thing and then you’re out at a fundraiser in California and you don’t go to the funeral of the people who died in the explosion. You know its one thing to say something slick on television in a ten second sound bite but we need action. And, it’s shameful that we as the most powerful nation on earth can win wars and liberate countries throughout history yet we can’t even secure our own border.

This territory is land the United States purchased from Mexico known as the Gadsen Purchase. Contrary to the belief of some, we did not seize this territory from Mexico by force of arms. We paid for it. It is ours and we mean to keep it!

The Continuing Civil War in Mexico

I don’t know how many of you monitor the Strategy Page website. I do frequently looking for info about the civil war in Mexico. My main purpose is to enlighten local churches who think that sending their kids to Mexico on “summer mission” trip is perfectly safe. On the contrary, the cartels in Mexico would like nothing more than to grab a much of juvenile gringos and hold them for ransom.


April 26, 2010: The U.S. government continues to be dismayed with the progress on the so-called virtual fence, the array of radar, image sensors, and acoustic sensors that was originally touted as the 21st century solution to border security. In March the Department of Homeland Security cut back on funding the virtual fence. Now a number of senior legislators want the project halted or scrapped, arguing regular, low-tech fencing is not only budget-friendly but more reliable. Two U.S. senators want to add another 3,000 Customs and Border Patrol agents to the border by 2015. The one thing everyone seem to agree is useful, including Mexican authorities, is Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). There are other UAVs besides Predator, but Predator has become the generic term for surveillance UAVs. UAVs are a psychological weapon. Smugglers (both dope and people smugglers) never know when they are being watched if there are UAVs operation in the area.

April 25, 2010: Mexican officials acknowledge that there is more Cartel War-related violence in the interior than there was last year. In other words, it has crept south from the border. The city of Monterrey and Mexico City have had their share of drug gang violence, but Monterrey has been the scene recently of some spectacular cartel slayings and shoot-outs. The government argues the cartels are launching the attacks in an attempt to shake-up the army and police, and damage the government’s credibility. Security officials say some of the violence amounts to battles between cartel lieutenants to fill senior leadership positions. A number of senior cartel leaders have been arrested or slain in the last eight months. The army has made life in the border trafficking zones very tough for the cartelistas. Police say they have pressurized the border and the pressure is going to increase over the next few months. Critics, however, argue the drug gangs are demonstrating that they can strike anywhere in the country. President Felipe Calderon has countered that argument by saying recently that the government is “not ceding any space to the criminals.”

April 24, 2010: Cartel gunmen used automatic rifles and grenades to ambush a convoy carrying a senior state security officer. Police said the gunmen also employed a .50 caliber (12.7mm) sniper rifle to shoot at the official’s armored SUV. The attack took place in Michoacan state. Four people were killed and ten wounded in the attack. Heavy .50 caliber sniper rifles are used as anti-vehicle weapons. The .50 caliber bullet has a great deal of stopping power. Originally, the U.S. .50 caliber M2 (“Ma Deuce”) heavy machine gun was designed as an anti-armored vehicle weapon.

April 23, 2010: Seven people were slain when cartel gunmen ambushed two police vehicles in Ciudad Juarez (Chihuahua state). Five of those killed were federal police officers and one was a city policeman. The other person was a civilian. There are around 5,000 federal police deployed in the Juarez region.

April 22, 2010: Approximately 50 cartel gunmen attacked a hotel in Monterrey (Nuevo Leon state) and kidnapped three people. The attack took place around three a.m. The gunmen drove up to the hotel in a convoy of stolen cars.

April 19, 2010: Government officials and diplomats are asking the U.S. to continue to improve cooperation with Mexican security agencies. Intelligence fusion centers with U.S. and Mexican agents and analysts are key to breaking up cartel operations, especially in the border regions. The Mexican government has come a long way from the days it rejected any overt cooperation with the U.S., calling the offer an attempt to undermine Mexican sovereignty. Mexican diplomats repeatedly point out that their government seeks international cooperation. However, the government riles at what it considers unfair criticism regarding corruption. Responding to charges from the U.S. that corruption in Mexico was hindering counter-drug efforts, Mexican officials argued that the U.S. is not doing enough to stem American demand for illegal narcotics.

April 17, 2010: U.S. Border Patrol agents fired at a vehicle that tried to run through a border checkpoint from Tijuana. The driver was later arrested.

April 15, 2010: U.S. and Mexican authorities confirm that cartel gunmen continue to launch attacks continue in the Juarez Valley area (east of Ciudad Juarez). Several hundred Mexican families have fled the area. Local authorities estimate at least 50 people from the area are now seeking asylum in the U.S.. Many family members have reported the drug gangs threaten to kill them if they stay in their homes. The valley is a major smuggling corridor from Mexico into Texas. At the moment most of the violence appears to be committed by the Sinaloa drug cartel. The Sinaloa cartel is fighting the Juarez cartel for control of smuggling routes in and around Juarez. It appears that the Sinaloa cartel is winning that fight. Most of the drug shipments now passing through the Juarez area are controlled by the Sinaloa cartel. The Sinaloa cartel works with two smaller enforcer gangs in the area, the Killer Artists and the Mexicles. Juarez has its own subsidiary enforcers, La Linea and Azteca.

April 9, 2010: U.S. congressional representatives told the Mexican government that they would try to speed up disbursement of Merida initiative funds. The Mexican government wants more helicopters and aircraft to fight the Cartel War.

April 1, 2010: Drug cartel gunmen attacked seven different targets in what authorities described as a coordinated series of assaults. The attacks took place in Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon states. Two of the attacks targeted Mexican Army garrisons, one in the city of Reynosa. Eighteen of the gunmen were slain by Mexican Army soldiers during those two attacks. A Mexican Army position near a major state highway in Nuevo Leon state was one of the other five sites assaulted. A firefight also occurred between soldiers manning a control point and cartel gunmen along the highway between Reynosa and Monterrey. The gunmen attacked the two garrisons using vehicles with bullet-proof armor, hand grenades, and automatic rifles.