9/11 plus 15
Fifteen years ago today, 19 al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four American planes, used them as guided missiles, brought down the World Trade Towers, severely damaged the Pentagon, and four terrorists were overpowered by Americans over a field in Pennsylvania. The suicide terrorist attacks killed 2,996, caused more than $100 billion in damages and stole America’s innocence.
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According to a new Pew Research Center poll, the 9/11 attacks continue to be a powerful memory for Americans: 91 percent of adults remember exactly where they were or what they were doing when they heard about the terrorist attacks.
So how has the 15–year “war on terror” changed America? Looking back and forward, can Americans really believe they are safer?
First a bit of history, the “war on terror” rightly started in the tribal nation of Afghanistan. Brand-new President George W. Bush summoned his top advisors to the Oval Office and chose Cofer Black, former CIA whiz, to implement a devastating retaliation for the nearly three thousand deaths. Black offered no mercy and told the rookie president that this effort required a few hundred specially trained military forces, 110 CIA officers, direct firepower, a bunch of money and his plan would end with what Black called – using an old Angola War expression – “when this is all over, the bad guys are going to have flies walking across their eyeballs.”
After 10 weeks, Black and his stealth-fighting machine proclaimed victory. All the Taliban cities, as well as their government, had been toppled.
In a 2013 Men’s Journal interview Black was asked if he briefed the Russians about the impending attack and how the Ruskies responded to his plan. They said, “You’re really going to get the hell kicked out of you.” Black replied, “We’re going to kill them – we’re going to put their heads on sticks… and you know what, the Russians loved it! After the meeting was over, two senior Russian officials, whom I will not name, said to me, ‘Mr. Black, finally America is acting like a superpower!’”
The follow through earned Black and the US the respect that had been sorely lacking.
The success should have ended there. But as we know, it didn’t. Bush ensnared the country into an ill-defined and ill-conceived “war on terror” that continues today.
Whether you agree with the “war on terror” or not, the consequences are very real and very alarming. With the advent of comprehensive counterinsurgency, COIN or nation-building, thanks General Petraeus, the taxpayers have spent trillions of dollars in a region made up of tribal nations.
Case in point, in a recent interview, Commander of Afghanistan US and NATO Forces, General John Nicholson told PBS the war’s progress is tedious. “We’re trying to build an airplane while in flight, OK? So they’re fighting a war while we’re trying to build an army. This is very hard,” he explained.
It must be said that the “war on terror” falls under the asymmetrical category. The sneaky “stateless” armies must be defeated with clear goals and end-state solutions. It’s here where the most powerful armed forces on the planet have stumbled.
In his book the Field of Fight, retired Army three-star General Mike Flynn describes the best way to defeat marauding radical Islamic terrorists. Flynn says to win the battle against radical Islam we must destroy the jihadi armies, kill or capture their leaders, discredit their ideology, create a 21st-century alliance and must hold countries, like Saudi Arabia, accountable for supporting terrorism.
“The best plan gives you the most options at the last possible minute. Right now we don’t have the best plan. A real strategic discussion about what it is that we are trying to achieve. Is it the defeat of radical Islam? It has to be beyond that and that’s where an alliance of nations has to get it together,” Flynn said.
It cost Osama bin-Laden roughly $500,000 to bring down the Twin Towers and Pentagon. In return, the US has suffered tens of thousands of casualties and flushed away trillions of dollars into the Middle East black hole. Plus, hundreds of thousands of Middle Easterners have died and more than 12 million of refugees are now stateless. Newt Gingrich said this week the US has failed so badly in the Middle East that we are giving the number one state sponsor of terrorism, Iran, $1.7 billion in cash, just like a drug cartel.
“So 15 years after 9/11, we’re not winning. We’re not winning in Afghanistan. We’re not winning in Iraq. We’re not winning in Syria. We’re not winning in Libya. We’re not winning in Yemen,” Gingrich emphasized (mimicking Donald Trump). He’s right.
One reason for the protracted war may be the US Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. American arms and technology companies export, firearms, fighter jets, tanks, as well as Patriot Missile batteries.
The big winner in the Department of State’s 2017 budget includes $5.7 billion for Foreign Military Financing. The main recipients of the proposed budget will be Israel ($3.1 billion), Egypt ($1.3 billion), Jordan ($350 million), Pakistan ($265 million), and Iraq ($150 million).
While the Middle East tops the list, funding for Africa in 2017 will double from last year. Due to ISIS’ expansion into Africa, countries like Mali, Somalia, and Nigeria will see an influx of American weaponry. But why do American leaders want to militarize the African continent? Of course, the prominent argument is; “if the US doesn’t do something then other countries will do it.” However, no other country on the planet finances military sales like the US.
The US and its band of misfit coalition partners have implemented a massive military build-up on the Arabian Peninsula and Israel. Let’s take a look at the military arsenal provided to a few coalition partners, most of which are also classified as human rights violators according to the State Department (link to other FMS article).
For the last three years, the US has provided tens of billions of dollars in military weaponry through Foreign Military Sales (FMS) to the United Arab Emirates (UAE); population 5.6 million, Qatar; population 2.1 million, Kuwait; population 2.7 million and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA); population 27.3 million.
The US has also provided both offensive and defensive weapon systems – some are designed to protect against airborne missile retaliation and air attacks. For example, the US supplied Qatar ($9.9B), Kuwait ($4.2 billion), and UAE ($1.1B) with Patriot anti-missile systems and UAE also acquired a $6.5B theater anti-air defense (THAAD) system. This type of weaponry typically protects against missile attacks from such weapons as SCUDs and the MLRS (Multiple Launch Rocket Systems) like the 880 launchers the Islamic Republic of Iran operates. The MLRS has a range of approximately 300 kilometers, making it easily capable of reaching any of the Gulf States of Kuwait, Qatar, UAE, and even KSA.
America also sold KSA $6.7 billion worth of KC-130 aerial refueling tankers, the UAE $4 billion and KSA $6.8 billion of munitions including “bunker buster bombs,” (typically used to attack harden targets like nuclear facilities); Qatar a $1.2 billion early warning radar suite; KSA $1.3 billion for 30 patrol boats for use in the Gulf of Hormuz; KSA $4 billion to upgrade its national guard; Qatar spent $3 billion on Apache Longbow attack helicopters used for special operations insertions. The list also includes the Globemaster long-range air transport planes, Javelin missiles, F-18’s and F-16’s, and Sidewinder anti-air missiles.
Also for last few years, the US has been quietly aiding the rebel insurgency in Syria trying to overthrow the Iranian-backed government of Bashir al-Assad. There have been multiple news reports, (including this report) that the US provided weapons collected from deposed Libyan Dictator Qaddafi and moved them through its CIA clearinghouse in Turkey to supply al-Qaeda-linked extremist groups opposing the Assad regime. It’s worth pointing out that both Qatar and KSA have been major supporters of the anti-Assad insurgency that evolved from a national rebellion and morphed into a major jihadi operation.
Details of this massive military build-up can be found on the Department of State (DoS) website. The DoS oversees Government-to-Government defense transfers through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program and is implemented through DoD’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency.
Interestingly, “(I)n addition to FMS, the Department of State also issues export licenses to US companies providing defense articles and services through our Direct Commercial Sales (DCS) efforts, usually after an intensive interagency review to ensure that exports further US foreign policy and national security interests,” a State Department official said. However, “Export license information is not disclosed by the Department due to restrictions under the Arms Export Control Act and International Traffic in Arms Regulations, but general information is released from DCS.”
According to the State Department, in the case of either FMS or DCS, the United States takes into account political, military, economic, arms control, and human rights conditions in making decisions on the provision of military equipment and the licensing of direct commercial sales to any country, in accordance with the Conventional Arms Transfer Policy, the Arms Export Control Act, and relevant international agreements
“Review and monitoring are an integral component of the process for US- origin defense articles delivered to any recipient nation. This is to make sure that those articles are being used in the manner intended and are consistent with our legal obligations, foreign policy goals, and values,” a Senior State Department official said.
And both State and Defense argue that Middle Eastern countries have agreed to work toward US security interests and abide by President Obama’s foreign policy doctrine.
However, looking at the current Middle East conflicts finds every country focused on sectarian protectionism, especially since the Obama administration has seemingly checked out. It is essential that this high-tech arsenal provided to foreign nations by US defense contractors be carefully monitored. The consequences of equipment falling into the wrong hands can be deadly, as it was for flight MH17 in Ukraine.
As the impact of ISIS’ offensive continues to sink in, US intelligence officials contend ISIS did not just randomly explode on the scene in 2014, they claim to have been reporting to high-level government officials the rise as well as the expansion of ISIS since 2012. This murderous organization is largely fueled by Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Brett McGurk testified before a Committee claiming, “The ISIS’ operations are calculated, coordinated and part of a strategic campaign led by its Syria-based leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.”
“This was a very clear case in which the US knew what was going on but followed a policy of deliberate neglect,” said Vali Nasr, the Dean of Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies and a former State Department adviser for the Middle East. During its assault in the region, ISIS received protection from KSA and Qatar. Both nations warned the US not to interfere with ISIS’s march to conquer northwestern Iraq and its turn west toward Syria and Jordan. America obeyed and ISIS gobbled up the region and spoils of war that included American tanks, helicopters, and artillery.
Many military experts said the opportunity to strike ISIS came and went when the 7,500-man Islamic Army crossed the wide-open Damascus-Baghdad Highway.
Military generals said the terror group was vulnerable to air attack with minimal collateral damage concerns. In the end, ISIS got its free passage from Mosul to eastern Syria with US inaction, which was tantamount to acquiescence.
“We oppose all foreign intervention and interference. There must be no meddling in Iraq’s internal affairs, not by us or by the US, the UK or by any other government. This is Iraq’s problem and they must sort it out themselves,” Saudi Prince Mohammed told the UK Telegraph. Just in case that bad intel was on the horizon, the Saudis immediately moved 30,000 combat troops to protect its border with Iraq.
Many Middle East policy experts say the Sunni’s view of ISIS as an Iraqi Sunni revolution against their Shiite oppressors is myopic and portends a broader Islamic war between Sunnis and Shiites.
From the US perspective, the ISIS campaign presents a myriad of conflicts. Qatar and KSA are major recipients of billions of dollars worth of US weapons through FMS, yet their direct support of ISIS, a terrorist group, means Qatar and KSA meet the definition of state sponsors of terrorism and should be banned from participation in the military program. Nevertheless, the end user certificates and export licenses are routinely approved by the State and Defense Departments, including an $11 billion sale to Qatar. (The Pentagon has refused multiple efforts to release the end-user agreements to this reporter as requested under FOIA.)
Furthermore, Qatar, KSA, and Kuwait are listed as Tier 2WL (Watch List) and Tier 3 under U.S. anti-trafficking in humans reports, which require a waiver by President Obama stating the sale is in national security interests. To the outside world, the US ostensibly appears to be violating its own anti-terrorism and anti-trafficking laws to provide sophisticated weapons systems to these human rights violators.
The infusion of military-grade weapons in the region only portends much more war. The war between the Sunnis and Shiites has grown more contentious due to the dysfunction of the Sykes-Picot Agreement of May 1916. Essentially the Agreement drew a twentieth-century map that granted control of Syria, Lebanon and Turkish Cilicia to the French and Palestine, Jordan and areas around the Persian Gulf, Baghdad to the British. That was followed by the 1919 Paris Peace Conference that outlined a “Kurdistan” as an entity by Şerif Pasha, who represented the Society for the Ascension of Kurdistan (Kürdistan Teali Cemiyeti). That promise was never kept and it’s doubtful the Kurds, who are Caucasian or Indo-European and not Arab, will wait another 100 years to establish their own country, one that will control its destiny through its own oil and revenues from oil pipelines from the Caspian Sea.
The complexity of the middle east today reflects Winston Churchill’s description of Russia in October 1939: “I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest.” Perhaps Russia is the key to the Middle East today.
Neither agreement ever took into account the tribal nature of the region that will continue to dog the Middle East until new maps emerge, or complete Armageddon is achieved. Until that day, America will continue to find itself under the threat of attack from a region that really doesn’t offer the US much. So are we safer after 15 years of war? Stay tuned!
© Copyright 2016 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved
Obama’s mishandling of the oil spill sinks his popularity
Back in February a billboard was placed along side a freeway in Minnesota displaying a picture of former President George W. Bush stating; “Do you miss me yet?” The billboard created an instant internet buzz something President Obama could use right about now.
It’s no secret that Obama’s poll numbers are sliding south to 40 percent and his continued inaction with America’s worst environmental disaster to date has even ardent Obama supporters running for cover. A new poll out today in Louisiana uncovered voters in the state think former President Bush handled Hurricane Katrina better than President Obama is handling the oil spill.
Approximately 50 percent of voters in the state of Louisiana, including 31 percent of Democrats, gave former President Bush higher grades (50 percent) on handling of Katrina compared to 35 percent for President Obama, according to the Public Policy Poll.
Overall only 32 percent of Louisianans approve of how Obama handled the spill while 62 percent disapprove. In contrast 34 percent of those questioned say they approved of how Bush dealt with Katrina and 58 percent disapproved.
There is some good news for President Obama; the folks in Louisiana blame BP the most when it comes to the massive oil spill. About 53 percent of voters say they’re mad at BP Oil Company while 29 percent place their anger with the federal government.
The overwhelming majority, 78 percent believe BP has the greatest responsibility for the clean up and a measly 11 percent think the federal government needs to mop up the oil.
One thing the nation’s largest oil spill has not accomplished is large opposition to off shore drilling. In Louisiana the oil industry is directly tied to the largest number of jobs and revenue stream. As such, 77 percent of Louisianans still support off shore drilling.
If there’s anybody who comes out a winner in this environmental nightmare it’s Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal. More than 63 percent of the voters approve of his job performance.
He even has a higher level of support at 65 percent for how he has handled the aftermath of the BP oil spill. It is well known that the Governor hasn’t gone back to his capitol office or home, but has remained in the affected regions listening to the fisherman, collecting ideas on how to solve the oil spill clean up and pitching in with manual labor when it is necessary.
“People are always concerned with their economic livelihood,” said Dean Debnam president of Public Policy Polling. “In Louisiana the economy and jobs are clearly tied to the oil and gas industry. Louisianans seem more concerned about the closure of oil rigs than of beaches.”
President Obama would do well to take his cue from Louisiana’s Governor Jindal and put his heart and soul into cleaning up the nation’s worst environmental disaster.
For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner
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Amnesty is back – White House prompts Senate to take up issue
The White House is reporting that close door discussions have begun in anticipation of the pro-amnesty March 21 rally to be held in Washington D.C.
The President sought to bring together Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) to breathe new life into the immigration issue. The House bill has lost steam in recent months as the economy continues to stall, raising jobless numbers across the country.
According to Nick Shapiro, a White House spokesman, support for an immigration bill must also include improved border security, but the president’s commitment remains “unwavering.”
This news comes to the delight of Latino groups who were promised amnesty during the 2008 presidential campaign. However, the health care debate still faces uncertainty and most Democrats are squeamish about jumping into another political quagmire so close to the midterm elections.
Setting the political partisanship aside seems unlikely since Obama signaled his intent to push health care through in a reconciliation process unnerving most Republicans.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano defended the 2011 border budget at a meeting in Washington D.C., saying the cuts do not put national security at risk.
The Border Patrol is set to cut just under 200 jobs along the nation’s borders underscoring the President’s statement that his administration would strengthen the U.S. borders before proceeding with immigration reform. Senate hearings also placed the virtual fence in the spotlight.
“This border fence issue has been a waste of billions of dollars,” said Senator John McCain (R-AZ), who asked Napolitano the reason for the yet to be completed project.
“Every major deadline has not been satisfied and I am not satisfied with SBInet,” Napolitano replied.
Democrats face a ton of border-protection activists if they pursue amnesty for more than 10 million illegal immigrants in a time of recession. Many Congressmen who serve near the border regions have made it clear amnesty will only add the job frustration Americans’ face.
It has been estimated by Congressman Lamar Smith of Texas that as many as seven million jobs are currently taken by illegal immigrants.
A new Rasmussen poll released found 67 percent of American voters think illegal aliens are a significant strain on the overall U.S. budget. It also pointed out that 66 percent of voters feel government benefits and services are a magnet for illegal aliens.
Once again the poll confirmed voters’ strong penchant for border control by 68 percent over legalizing illegal aliens that claims only 26 percent of Americans desire.
For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner
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U.S gives Mexico keys to open borders and amnesty
Congressman calls for investigation on Sutton and House of Death
Mexico’s culture of corruption is synonymous with the drug dealers, Federales as well as the government. It is no secret business south of the border is handled with a greasy handshake full of money, but what’s surprising to most Americans are the major trade deals cut to benefit our neighbor to the south.
Why has America bent over backwards to create free trade and open borders with such an uncooperative neighbor? What has Mexico given up for the sake of our benefit? Still thinking? It could take awhile.
Mexico is a country filled with natural resources. There is plenty of fertile land for crops, it lays claim to a massive amount of oil and contains thousands of miles of sandy beaches for tourists to frolic on. So why does this country, so close to the successes of its North American neighbor continue to stagnate in corruption and remain an oligarchy?
For the meantime America is the sole superpower. But unlike the past, American administrations have made mistakes and those blunders translated into some bad deals for the American people.
So where did it begin to go wrong?
Beginning in 2002/03 the American government was in the business of trying to catch the bad guys in Juarez and in the midst of catching the murderous cartel members, ICE found itself involved in a dozen murders.
The murders took place in Juarez, Mexico at the now infamous ‘House of Death.’ Twelve murders should have shook Mexico awake and dealt a blow to the American law enforcement community. Strangely it did not. Mexico would hold on to that huge mistake and smartly use it to their advantage at a later date.
This would now become the first major law enforcement cover-up in the Bush “W” White House.
While 12 murders are taking place under the watchful eye of ICE, a mistake is made and it nearly cost the lives of several DEA agents assigned to the Juarez office. This would forever be known as the catalyst point. Once a senior DEA agent Sandalio Gonzalez learns of ICE’s shenanigans, he writes a letter and begins a paper trail.
When Gonzalez learned about the House of Death details he rightly knows something is afoul. He then writes his ICE counterpart and the office of U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton formally demanding accountability for the missteps that led to the U.S. knowing and allegedly participating in 12 murders.
It is worth pointing out that there is no statute of limitations for murder.
“Over the past five and a half years I found a trail that didn’t make sense regarding economic disparities and the undermining of national security. All paths led right back to the El Paso Region because everyone understood Mexico was holding something over us. The pattern was easily documented and verifiable. Ultimately it all led back to the House of Death,” says Andy Ramirez, president of the California based nonprofit Law Enforcement Officers Advocates Council, who documented a pattern of prosecutorial abuse by Justice, and misrepresentations of fact by Homeland Security.
With an internal cover-up in play, Mexico was in position to play the House of Death card in 2004 and thereafter due to the failure of the U.S. government to clean house. This would eventually somewhat play out in federal court in December 2006 where sworn testimony of Michelle Leonhart, then DEA Deputy Administrator places responsibility for the House of Death squarely on ICE.
When Leonhart was asked if ICE was responsible, she responded, “ICE was responsible, yes…ICE caused the incident.”
At this point, former U.S. Attorney Pete Nunez said, “heads should have rolled in this case.” Yet no high-ranking U.S. officials lost their jobs, nor were they prosecuted.
This simple fact, coupled with a massive cover-up and Mexico’s silence would allow Mexico to gain favorable economic and immigration related concessions while restructuring U.S. border security- with a very complicit Bush White House.
Uncovering the favors for the Mexican Government
Now that the cover-up is in full swing a pair of meetings would take place in Crawford, TX with Mexico’s President Vicente Fox and U.S. President Bush. During the first meeting in March of 2004, Mexico and the U.S. reached a critical agreement that allowed Mexicans with short-term visas to cross the border without being fingerprinted and photographed by U.S. authorities. The respective leaders also began a discussion of a “Guest Worker Plan” or amnesty.
In April of 2004 a plea agreement was reached regarding the murders in the House of Death case. The cartel leader, Heriberto Santillan pled guilty to drug trafficking while the murder charges were dropped. He accepted 25 years in a U.S. prison courtesy of Sutton. This plea deal ensured that Johnny Boy and the Bush Administration would not have to go into court where the gruesome tortures and murders, as well as the case mismanagement by Sutton’s office and ICE (the very things being covered-up) would be exposed in the light of day.
One can conclude that Sutton was placed all along in the position of gatekeeper to protect the White House. Along with his partner in crime Alberto Gonzales, who went from Special Counsel to the President to Attorney General, both would be able to protect all the Bush Administration’s policies regarding Mexico.
It was also during this time that Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean, El Paso Border Patrol Agents, found themselves in a heap of trouble regarding shots fired at a known drug dealer. Sutton was the prosecuting attorney in this case, and in another case involving illegal aliens, that being Edwards County Deputy Sheriff Gilmer Hernandez.
“This case (Ramos-Compean) was a skunk. It had a terrible odor,” explains Congressman Walter B. Jones-R NC. “I always wondered why there was no investigation in this matter and why the Mexican Government had so much sway in this American case involving Border Patrol Agents.”
For Jones and a few other Senior Congressional members the story is becoming increasingly clear, referring to the House of Death. “This conspiracy, corruption and cover-up screams for immediate Congressional investigation,” Jones said matter of factly.
“Wrong is wrong, and after reading more about this case it was expected that Sutton would have shut down the House of Death case after the first murder. He did not. We need to remember we are a nation of laws,” Jones finished.
However, these favors for Mexico did not just involve the questionable prosecutions of law enforcement officers.
Marginalizing the Border Patrol
Soon after in June 2004, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge releases an internal memorandum, which prohibited race profiling as an enforcement method.
U.S. Border Patrol agents from the Temecula Border Patrol Sector were conducting interior enforcement operations in Ontario, CA, which resulted in condemnation by the Mexican government and Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus claiming race profiling. Such actions have continued to this day when it comes to immigration enforcement.
June would prove to be a busy month for the Mexican government.
A Social Security Totalization Agreement was signed with Mexico. This agreement would put millions of illegal Mexican workers into the U.S. Social Security system. It is alleged that they would collect U.S. benefits based on their U.S earnings under false or stolen Social Security numbers plus earnings in Mexico. Opponents claimed this pact would further lure illegal immigration, and remain a key component for the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America.
On July 1, 2004 David V. Aguilar became Chief of the Border Patrol after being named to the position in May 2004. The appointment of Aguilar, Chief Patrol Agent of Tucson Sector, was key as he immediately began restructuring the patrol from which many controversial internal events began to inexplicably shape.
This brings us back to Andy Ramirez who stated, “It was the appointment of David Aguilar where the Border Patrol was destroyed from within. Very quickly, I had sources consisting of active duty and retired agents telling me that Mexico was running all the sectors and stations along the southwest border. In a very short time an agency who’s motto was ‘Honor First’ became one of ‘no confidence’ where their own employees would be filled with mistrust and fear of the very government they were willing to die for defending our front lines.”
By the end of summer 2004 a “gag” order was put in place by the Department of Homeland Security ending any unauthorized discussion or statements by its’ employees with the public and media. This was needed to stop any whistle blowing within the department or comments by agents to the media regarding the outrageous policies of the Bush Administration.
It is also worth pointing out that the formation of the Department of Homeland Security in 2003 was critical in bringing immigration and customs law enforcement agencies together under one umbrella and squelch any stray employees’ opposition to these types of matters.
DHS now had the Border Patrol, Customs, and ICE all within one roof. No one could step out of line under the Bush White House’s watchful eyes. Secretary Ridge and Attorney General Ashcroft would have a direct pipeline to the president, both of whom had full knowledge of the House of Death case as documented in Sandy Gonzalez’ civil suit.
Taking a cue from the 9/11 Commission Report, the Bush Administration released a new National Border Patrol Strategy, which made stopping the terrorists the top priority.
The reality was that such a strategy sounded good on paper, but accomplished very little other than giving Congress and the public a façade of smoke and mirrors to give a sense of “wow they’re doing something to control the borders.”
However, local Border Patrol sector chiefs were stripped of command and control over their kingdoms. All operations were subsequently centralized and placed under the control of headquarters and Chief Aguilar in Washington, DC. In effect, headquarters no longer served the field.
On November 16, 2004, a memorandum of understanding was completed between CBP and ICE in which ICE’ Office of Investigations was given control of key investigative responsibilities while ultimately neutering the Border Patrol by limiting enforcement to cross border traffic in “routine areas of patrol”.
Moving forward into 2005 the Congress was making a full-court press for immigration reform or amnesty.
In early spring another Bush Administration meeting took place in Texas with President Fox, and Canadian Prime Minister Martin to outline the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America.
This deal would further weaken border security and interior enforcement as well as denounce U.S. civilian border observers or Minutemen groups as vigilantes, and proposed Republican Congressional legislation calling for construction of a border fence. Discussions about a new “guest worker” plan for Mexican illegal aliens that experts have called a second amnesty also began to take shape at this tri-country pow-wow.
Throughout the summer the country would begin its grumblings about the McCain/Kennedy/Bush immigration reform bill.
Curiously the Mexican Secretary of Foreign Relations Official Website outlines all the activities by U.S. civilian groups including the Minutemen groups, and official investigations by Congressmen regarding border security and interior enforcement.
During this same time period numerous Chief Patrol Agents and other high-ranking officials in the Border Patrol suddenly began to retire early before their mandatory age-57 retirement requirement.
New Mexican President, Same Interference
In the interim, Mexican violence continued to spin out of control with the election of new President Felipe Calderon.
Meanwhile as word of the border fence made its way into the 2006 legislation it was becoming increasingly clear a fence would not be built as many Americans wanted.
“The Bush Administration was constantly dragging their feet. They wanted no part in clear language that put a mandated double fence in high traffic zones and they didn’t want a time certain for completion,” said retired Congressman Duncan L. Hunter, R-CA. “I finally just pushed for the double and triple fence in the San Diego region and left Arizona and Texas out.”
The Bush White House along with other Texas legislators would water down the required fencing in the 2006 immigration reform bill and to this day the fence has been plagued by delays, cost overruns, and bureaucratic obstruction due to immense pressure from Mexico.
However, Americans were having no part in the new amnesty talk and it would be the radio talk shows leading the charge to stop the final McCain/Kennedy/Bush legislation in its tracks.
A defeated White House and an empowered Mexican government wouldn’t end on that note.
The outgoing President Bush would get the Merida Initiative signed into law by June 30 of 2008. It provided $1.4 billion ($400 million immediately) financed through Congressional Appropriations (from U.S. taxpayers) to assist Mexico in combating transnational organized crime; Ambassador Garza and counterpart in Mexico City sign implementation agreement Dec. 3, 2008
Considering the mishandling and subsequent cover-up of the House of Death murder spree that began in El Paso and found its way to Washington, local Congressman Silvestre Reyes (D-TX) oddly has never issued any statement regarding this entire mess.
When asked to comment, Vincent Perez, Reyes’ press secretary responded with, “I don’t know what this had to do with us.”
When pressed with the fact that the agencies involved were working in his district, Perez responded, “I still don’t understand what this has to do with our office.”
However, in a different matter Reyes’ office contacted ICE on June 19, 2008 regarding the kidnapping of a relative in Juarez though ICE had no jurisdiction. As a result, Reyes is now under investigation by the House Ethics Committee as a complaint was filed in July 2008 questioning the improper usage of a U.S. law enforcement agency.
Betting the House
The only way this type of political play could have been pulled off was by Mexico having a chip; keeping in mind they want open borders – amnesty at minimum. They had the political chip, or blackmail, courtesy of the mishandling and cover-up of the House of Death case. But to pull it off, law enforcement starting with the Border Patrol had to be undermined and destroyed from within; the very thing Mexico has always wanted. ICE is corrupt, overwhelmed, and melting anyhow so they would be an ineffective replacement.
The long-standing relationship between Reyes and Aguilar within management at Border Patrol is equally important. Reyes was Chief Patrol Agent of McAllen Sector while Aguilar was a high-ranking subordinate under him.
Given this relationship it would be easy to communicate and restructure the Border Patrol to the agency’s detriment with Reyes shepherding it through Congress without much notice. Many Members of Congress have deferred to Reyes due to his experience as a Border Patrol high-ranking agent.
Given DHS and the Justice Department’s roles in the House of Death case, with the ‘rule of law’ eliminated, and their failure to hold people accountable in this matter, amnesty could be pushed. The American people have been left standing alone against these overwhelming odds.
For part one; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner~y2009m11d2-House-of-Death-in-Juarez-prelude-to-a-massive-murder-coverup
For part two; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner~y2009m11d4-House-of-Death–US-Government-coverup-unveiled
For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/x-10317-San-Diego-County-Political-Buzz-Examiner
More About: Immigration · 2009 · Border security · Amnesty · Mexico violence · House of Death · La Raza
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