Sunday, April 19, 2015

Are Terrorists Hiding Under the Bed?

Over the past few days my inbox has been hit with a barrage of emails claiming that southern Texas (or in some cases, various parts of northern Mexico) were crawling with ISIS members. Some of the articles cites certain "officials" with the US Border Patrol, or ICE agent, a mayor, or best of all, a "unnamed government source". The one I enjoyed the most claimed there was an actual ISIS terrorist training camp in Anapara according to an "undisclosed Mexican official", which is just southwest of Ciudad Juarez in the Mexican State of Chihuahua. This also happens to be just eight miles from the US/Mexican border and ground zero for one of Mexico's most successful drug cartels, the Juarez Cartel (they are estimated to bring in $200 million per week in profit). All of the stories, of course, point to another "9/11" type of terrorist attack, with the US Army base, Ft. Bliss, in El Paso or the Marine bases in Corpus Christi or Yuma Arizona as being the likely targets. Even some political bigwigs, including Congressman Trent Franks (R-AZ), Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Texas Governor Rick Perry (R) got snookered into believing the stories were true.

The fact is, there is no current ISIS or other terrorist threat in Texas or Mexico. However, the stories, and the apparent readily acceptability, seem to go to the point that Americans are afraid. We're not only afraid that the war unleashed by George "Dubya" Bush will find its way to our shores as the 9/11 attack showed were clearly possible. I think Americans are also just as afraid (and angry) that our border with Mexico remains open despite decades of empty promises to the American People that the border would be made secure. Instead, we've seen the ICE and the Border Patrol basically emasculated as any form of deterrent, with their enforcement duties all but stripped. We've seen the current US President blatantly blow off the citizens of this country and move ahead at full steam to find and use every backdoor and non-constitutional means to circumvent our immigration laws so that deporting illegal immigrants is next to impossible to implement and actually rewarding those already here with various forms of "near citizenship". In some states, illegal immigrants can practically do everything an actual citizen can do except vote, and, frankly, I wouldn't be to surprised to see that happen.

Nevertheless, the readily acceptance of the ISIS story on our border, I think, goes to the fact that Mexican criminal gangs routinely cross over into the United States, bringing with them not just drugs which ruins human lives while perpetuating poverty, school dropout rates, and unemployment, but also murder, theft, extortion, kidnapping, and an entire culture which has no respect for the law and most certainly no remorse for any lost and damaged lives in their pursuit of money and power. Therefore, if drug gangs can cross our southern border with near impunity, and illegal immigrants can cross it with a not so subtle wink and nod from this presidential regime, then why not Islamic terrorist groups?

ISIS, Al Qaeda, and the Taliban appear to have the financial wherewithal to acquire the logistics to make the journey and connections once in this hemisphere. They would certainly be able to acquire the weapons and "coyotes" to get them across the largely empty desert and into safe houses on the American side of the border (given their preponderance for explosions, getting back across the border may be a non-issue). While ISIS and these drug cartels share elements in common such as open and public murder of absolutely anyone, I suppose that if there's an upside to this, it's that ISIS and other extremists wouldn't go out of their way to befriend these drug cartels since they, more than anything else, represents everything they oppose---sex, drugs and liquor. Plus, let's not forget that, as surprising as it seems, they are also religious in their own twisted way. In short, they wouldn't betray their Catholicism for a radical interpretation of Islam that would murder them solely because of their religion. So then, does the adage, "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" hold here? Can these two groups who, at least on the surface, cooperate long enough to make something happen?

My personal opinion is yes; yes they can, however, with some provisions. First, as long as the terrorists are paying in cash or willing to make to drug deal (certain parts of the Middle East is known for its opium production), an agreement could be reached. And let's not forget that these gangs have large swaths of the Mexican government (federal and local) in their pockets, not to mention the Mexican police force and military. With Obama's gutting of the Border Patrol, it seems like an easy enough proposition. Any chaos triggered by the terrorists on US soil could play into the cartel's hands since it would allow them a short window of opportunity to expand their influence across the border. However, it would also bring attention to the border area which would quickly become militarized, and that would be bad for business. Even the Mexican government would be forced to act (and let's not forget that there is absolutely no reason these same Moslem terrorist wouldn't attack Mexican targets. After all, Mexico, along with the rest of Latin America, is a very strong Catholic country with close ties to the Vatican---the arch enemy of militant Islam). Secondly, any agreement between the two groups would almost certainly be short term given their ideological differences. The gang bangers and their cohorts are strictly interested in profit while the terrorists are strictly interested in their prophet and imposing Sharia law, which is counter to everything the drug lords espouse.

To sum up, while there are no Islamic terrorist on or near our southern border, the fact that Americans (and Mexicans) are keenly
aware of the potential threat should tell both the Mexican and American governments that there needs to be a way to control and restrict the flow of individuals back and forth. Although the transnational corporations and one percenters who now make up the oligarchy which controls the US government want to create an open border and free trade world whereby the economic serfs...err...I mean employees..can follow the jobs, there are reasons---terrorism being just one of them---to restrict the free flow of populations, at least for the time being, and until these individuals are brought to heel and accept the wisdom of corporate commercialization.

Tijuana Transfer

US State Dept call reports on ISIS training camps in Mexico 'unfounded"

Is ISIS in Mexico and planning to cross the border?

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