News From the Border

Providing the news from a different front but from a war that we must win as well! I recognize the poverty and desperate conditions that many Latinos live in. We, as the USA, have a responsibility to do as much as we can to reach out to aid and assist spiritually with the Gospel and naturally with training, technology and resources. But poverty gives no one the right to break the laws of another sovereign nation.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Cintas warned against firing immigrant force

By Jerry Seper

Published November 28, 2006

A Mississippi Democrat in line to become chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee has warned the nation's largest uniform supplier it faces criminal charges if it follows a White House proposal to recheck workers with mismatched Social Security numbers and fire those who cannot resolve the discrepancy in 60 days.
Rep. Bennie Thompson said in a letter to Cintas Corp. it could be charged with "illegal activities in violation of state and federal law" if any of its 32,000 employees are terminated because they gave incorrect Social Security numbers to be hired.

Calderón's 1st test is his inauguration

Mexican lawmakers threaten swearing-in ceremony
By S. Lynne Walker
Photo TOMAS BRAVO / Reuters
November 30, 2006

MEXICO CITY – With the clock ticking down to Mexico's presidential inauguration tomorrow, the country faces a new political crisis that threatens to undermine Felipe Calderón's administration.

The solemn congressional chamber where Calderón is scheduled to take the oath of office has been a battleground since Tuesday, when members of the president-elect's conservative party exchanged blows with lawmakers from the defeated leftist party who are trying to block the inauguration.

Kidnappers release one American, one Texan in Mexican border state


1:18 p.m. November 29, 2006

PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Mexico – A Texan man and a Mexican man kidnapped by 30 to 40 gunmen at a hunting ranch were released Wednesday unharmed, but three others remained missing, authorities said.

Coahuila state prosecutor Jesus Torres gave no further details about the release of David Mueller, 45, of the Sweetwater, Texas area, and Fidel Rodriguez Cerdan, of Monterrey. The men were on a hunting trip when they were abducted from a ranch near the U.S. border over the weekend.

Librado Pina Jr., 49, and his son Librado Pina III, 25, both of Laredo, Texas; and the hunting ranch's cook, Marco Ortiz, remain missing, Torres said.

Witnesses told police that 30 to 40 armed men entered the La Barranca ranch late Sunday and took the five men away.

GAO audits find files on immigrants go missing

By Kelly Thornton

November 30, 2006

Immigration officials have misplaced or lost tens of thousands of immigration files in 14 of the nation's busiest districts, and the San Diego office is among the worst offenders, according to congressional investigators.

In a report released yesterday, the Government Accountability Office found those districts processed as many as 30,000 citizenship applications last year without the necessary files.

The GAO report cited internal audits in 2005 that found 21 percent of files were not where they were supposed to be in the Citizenship and Immigration Services' San Diego office.

A summary of the San Diego audit described the number of misplaced or lost “alien files,” or A-files, as “staggering.” Most of those files – 11,731 of the local office's 56,092 – are missing because they were not adequately tracked when received or transferred to other offices, according to the report.

Immigration officials gird for rush to altar

By Brian Donohue

Published November 29, 2006

Some people marry for love. Others for companionship. Some for money.

And for a growing number of undocumented immigrants, marriage is for something else: a green card.

Federal immigration officials call it marriage fraud--the crime committed when foreign nationals marry U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents solely so their new spouses can sponsor them for legal permanent residency.

As the United States cracks down on illegal immigrants and tightens restrictions on other routes toward legal residency, federal immigration agencies are bracing for a wave of people marrying for a path to citizenship.

Mexican Lawmakers Seek End to Standoff

Nov 30, 3:50 AM EST

Associated Press Writer

MEXICO CITY (AP) -- A strange standoff continued in Mexico's Congress as rival legislators refused to stop blocking the platform where conservative President-elect Felipe Calderon wants to be sworn in Friday in front of foreign dignitaries including former President Bush.

Lawmakers sprawled across the chamber's green leather seats Wednesday, many with their feet up and newspapers across their laps. They munched on snacks, drank endless cups of coffee and chatted or sent cell-phone text messages amid sleeping bags and empty food and beverage containers.

Competing banners stretched across the front of the elegant wooden speaker's platform.

"We are defending Democracy," read the conservatives' sign. "Mexico does not deserve a traitor to democracy as president," read the leftists'

Tijuana Police Official, 2 Others Slain

Nov 30, 12:44 AM EST

TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) -- Gunmen attacked a police car in the border city of Tijuana, killing a police chief, his bodyguard and a secretary, authorities reported on Wednesday.

The shooting late Tuesday killed the head of police in the Mesa de Otay sector. Gerardo Santiago Prado was the fourth sector police chief killed so far this year in the Tijuana area. About a dozen Tijuana policemen have been killed so far in 2006.

Also killed in Tuesday's attack were Officer Hector Javier Inzunza, and Nancy Gomez Teran, who worked as a secretary in the Mesa de Otay police sector offices, the city's Public Safety Department said.

Witnesses said the gunmen in three vehicles cut off the police car, forced it to stop, opened fire and then fled.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Assimilation of immigrants, illegal as well as legal, has mostly not occurred

Testing for Citizenship
By Henry Mark Holzer | November 29, 2006

On August 9, 1994, former Texas Congresswoman Barbara Jordan, then Chair of the United States Commission on Immigration Reform, told the House Committee on Ways and Means, Subcommittee on Human Resources, that “[t]he Commission believes that legal immigration has been and can continue to be a strength of this country. Most legal immigrants are the spouses, children, parents, or siblings of a

U.S. citizen or long-term permanent resident. A smaller number are sponsored by businesses that need their skills and talents. We take an affirmative decision to admit these individuals. It is with the expectation and desire that they will be integrated immediately into our social community and, eventually, through naturalization, into the political community as well. (Emphasis added.)

Regrettably, the Commission’s optimistic, even noble, expectation and desire has been unfulfilled.

As Victor Davis Hansen in Mexifornia, Patrick J. Buchanan in State of Emergency, and countless others in books, articles, blogs, and speeches have conclusively documented, assimilation of immigrants, illegal as well as legal, has mostly not occurred.

Census Bureau finds 47 million speak a foreign language


WASHINGTON — In 14 million U.S. households, people speak a language other than English, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday.

Three million of those homes are "linguistically isolated," where all members 14 years and older have at least some difficulty with English, the report said.

The Census Bureau data, which was based on information from the 2000 census, also showed that one in five people over the age of 5 in the United States spoke a language other than English that year and that 21 million spoke English less than "very well."

Nationally, 47 million people speak a foreign language. Of those, 28 million speak Spanish, 10 million speak other Indo-European languages, nearly 7 million speak Asian and Pacific Island languages and 1.8 million speak other languages, according to the census.

Of the 3 million "linguistically isolated" households nationwide, 857,000 of the primary renters or homeowners did not finish high school and 685,000 had a bachelor's degree or more education.

1,100-lb. pot find has a new wrinkle


Finding more than 1,100 pounds of marijuana Tuesday on the Tohono O'odham Reservation wasn't unusual for Border Patrol agents.

Discovering it in 50 bundles tied to the front and backs of three ATVs covered in camouflage blankets, however, wasn't normal, said Border Patrol Tucson Sector spokesman Gustavo Soto. ATVs are most often used to smuggle small amounts — 20 to 30 pounds — of drugs in quick dropoffs near the border, Soto said.

"This is extremely unusual," Soto said. "It just shows how much success we are having out in the Ajo area."

Agents found the ATVs Tuesday morning near the village of Gu Vo, northeast of Lukeville near Federal Route 1, Soto said. Agents followed tracks from southeast of Lukeville near Menager's Dam until they found one ATV concealed in the brush. They found the other two about a mile north, Soto said.

The 1,100 pounds of marijuana has an estimated street value of $550,000, using figures from the Arizona High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, the federal anti-drug analysis and intelligence center.

Tuesday's seizure is the latest bust in a busy start to fiscal 2007 for the Tucson Sector. Since Oct. 1, agents have seized more than 107,000 pounds of marijuana, a 27 percent increase from the same period during the record-setting fiscal 2006, Soto said.

Background files missing; immigrants OK'd anyway


WASHINGTON — About 30,000 applications from immigrants seeking citizenship were processed by the government even though thousands of background files used to determine eligibility were missing, congressional investigators found.

Details of the investigation by the Government Accountability Office were released by Republican Sens. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Susan Collins of Maine Tuesday.

According to the GAO, 14 Citizenship and Immigration Services offices were missing 110,000 alien files, or A-files. Such files contain applications and other documents of some noncitizens and serve as the primary file for the immigrant and help determine eligibility.

45,000 terror-threat illegals released into U.S. population

Guatemalans migrating to Phoenix

The Arizona Republic
Published: 11.29.2006

Metropolitan Phoenix is becoming a new destination for Guatemalans who are often escaping civil and political instability, looking for better-paying jobs and joining family living in the United States.

Mexicans are still dominant in the state's immigrant community, but thousands of Latin Americans are moving to metropolitan Phoenix from home countries and other parts of the United States, lured by jobs, affordability and safety.

The Guatemalan government, which recently opened a consulate in Phoenix, estimates that 30,000 to 35,000 Guatemalans live in Arizona, mostly in metro Phoenix.

5 kidnapped at Mexico ranch

From the Associated Press
November 29, 2006

PIEDRAS NEGRAS, MEXICO — U.S. and Mexican authorities are searching for three Americans and two Mexicans kidnapped by dozens of armed men who swarmed a Mexican hunting ranch near the Texas border.

Witnesses told police that 30 to 40 armed men entered the La Barranca ranch late Sunday and took the five men. The ranch is near the Mexican town of Hidalgo, about 30 miles northwest of Nuevo Laredo.

Brawl, standoff in Mexican Congress days before inauguration

By Mark Stevenson
Associated Press
Nov. 29, 2006
07:37 AM
AP Photo

MEXICO CITY - Lawmakers wrestled, slapped each other and tumbled across the floor of Mexico's Congress after opposition legislators threatened to block the inauguration of the incoming president, whom they accuse of stealing the election.

By late Tuesday, the brawl had turned into a tense standoff between congressmen of President-elect Felipe Calderon's conservative party - who want him to take the oath of office in Congress - and opposition leftists who have vowed to block the swearing-in ceremony.

The battle showed how hard it could be for Calderon to unite a nation divided since he narrowly defeated opposition candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in the disputed July 2 election.

Congress has seen plenty of degrading behavior, but Tuesday's brawl came as Mexico faces central questions on the effectiveness of its government, with escalating turf wars between drug gangs and bloody street battles in the southern city of Oaxaca, which was seized for five months by leftist protesters.

Mexican Lawmakers Get Physical on Congress Floor

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Illegal aliens murder 12 Americans daily

Death toll in 2006 far overshadows total U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq, Afghanistan
Posted: November 28, 2006 1:00 a.m. Eastern
By Joseph Farah © 2006

WASHINGTON – While the military "quagmire" in Iraq was said to tip the scales of power in the U.S. midterm elections, most Americans have no idea more of their fellow citizens – men, women and children – were murdered this year by illegal aliens than the combined death toll of U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan since those military campaigns began.

Though no federal statistics are kept on murders or any other crimes committed by illegal aliens, a number of groups have produced estimates based on data collected from prisons, news reports and independent research.

Twelve Americans are murdered every day by illegal aliens, according to statistics released by Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa. If those numbers are correct, it translates to 4,380 Americans murdered annually by illegal aliens. That's 21,900 since Sept. 11, 2001.

Total U.S. troop deaths in Iraq as of last week were reported at 2,863. Total U.S. troop deaths in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Uzbekistan during the five years of the Afghan campaign are currently at 289, according to the Department of Defense.

But the carnage wrought by illegal alien murderers represents only a fraction of the pool of blood spilled by American citizens as a result of an open border and un-enforced immigration laws.

While King reports 12 Americans are murdered daily by illegal aliens, he says 13 are killed by drunk illegal alien drivers – for another annual death toll of 4,745. That's 23,725 since Sept. 11, 2001.

Poll Finds Most Mexicans Oppose Protest

Nov 27, 10:17 PM EST

MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Most Mexicans disapprove of plans by Mexico's main leftist party to disrupt Friday's swearing-in ceremony of President-elect Felipe Calderon, according to a poll released Monday.

The poll, published in the El Universal newspaper, found 64 percent of those surveyed disapproved of a blockade by the leftist Democratic Revolution Party of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador while 26 percent favored the protest.

The figure indicated that even many of those who voted for Lopez Obrador disapprove of the action. Lopez Obrador is protesting official results showing him with 35 percent of the vote on July 2, just behind Calderon.

Burned bodies in Juarez

Burned body of man discovered near farm

Article Launched:11/22/2006 12:00:00 AM MST
Louie Gilot

The charred body of a man was found Tuesday on a dirt road leading to a south Juárez farm called "El Quemado," the burned one, Juárez police said.

The body, which was 200 meters from the Casas Grandes highway, was completely burned and officials could not tell the victim's age.

Burned tires found nearby could have provided the fuel for the fire, officials said. Some wounds on the body suggested that animals had dragged it, police said.


Another charred body is found in an arroyo

By Louie Gilot / El Paso Times

Article Launched:11/28/2006 12:00:00 AM MST

A second burned body found in Juárez in less than a week belonged to a man who died of a gunshot wound to the head, Juárez police officials said Sunday.

The body -- almost completely charred -- was found Saturday in an arroyo. The victim was 25 to 30, had red hair and a goatee and was wearing a black ski mask, police said.

Another charred man was found Nov. 21 on a dirt road leading to a south Juárez farm called "El Quemado," the burned one. He, too, had been shot in the head. Neither man has been identified.

CBP Border Patrol Seizes More Than $3.5 Million Worth of Cocaine

Texas National Guardsmen Assist Agents

Kingsville, Texas — U.S. Customs and Border Protection Border Patrol agents and Texas National Guardsmen discovered 110 pounds of cocaine hidden in a sports utility vehicle at the Sarita Border Patrol checkpoint on November 24. The contraband is valued at over $3.5 million.

The seizure occurred when agents assigned to the Sarita Border Patrol checkpoint observed the SUV enter the primary inspection area. While the primary agent performed an immigration inspection on the driver, a CBP Border Patrol canine team conducted a non-intrusive, free-air sniff around the vehicle. The canine alerted on the vehicle and the driver was directed to the secondary inspection area for a closer inspection.

A search of the vehicle revealed 42 bundles of cocaine weighing 110 pounds, valued at over $3.5 million. The United States citizen driver was arrested and the case was turned over to Drug Enforcement Administration.

Entrants hurt low- skill men, study says

The Providence (R.I) Journal
, Arizona
| Published: 11.28.2006

The workers who have been most affected by the massive influx of illegal immigrants into the United States over the past five years are low-skilled, young and native-born, according to a recent study.

"It appears that employers are substituting new immigrant workers for young, native-born workers," economists Andrew Sum, Paul Harrington and Ishwar Khatiwada wrote. "The negative impacts tended to be larger for in-school youth compared to out-of-school youth, and for native-born black and Hispanic males compared to their white counterparts."

The study was conducted by the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University.

Resolution on migrants draws support, alarm

The Associated Press
Published: 11.28.2006

The Prescott City Council is expected to resume discussions today on a proposed resolution urging stricter state and federal enforcement on illegal immigration matters.

The resolution says that "illegal immigration is creating a dangerous and intolerable situation in which terrorists are given easy access to all parts of our country."

Several council members expressed support for the resolution during a study session last week, but the council also heard from a number of people who urged the city to use less inflammatory language.

Illegal Students reprise

On July 7, I posted a number of articles entitled "Illegal Students" relating to students crossing the border and illegally attending school in the US. It must be understood that these students are crossing legally, many having been anchor babies with dual US - Mexican citizenship. However, because they are not resident in the US, and in particular in the county in which they are attending school, they are in violation of the law, taking up space for legitimate students and sapping school district resources without having to pay school tax.

Here are a few newer articles on the subject:

San Luis School Woes
Gaby Gonzalez/ Reporter

School’s back in session for kids in San Luis Arizona—and San Luis, Rio Colorado.

“You see kids crossing in the morning and you can see them in the evening going back and that takes the space from my kids and we live here and we pay rent and taxes and everything and I don’t think it’s fair,” says Christina Padilla.

Some parents in Mexico send their children north for a better education. Some parents on the U.S. side are upset— those kids are bumping their kids out of the classroom.

Padilla says, “My kids can’t got to the school they belong to and then I have to take them to another school a lot further to the other side of town.”

The district agrees there is a problem.


Students Cross Border to Attend Schools
Posted by Anthony Franklin, 11/22/2006

It's 5:30 a.m., and the bus is picking up kids who have come across the border from Mexico to attend school in the United States.

San Luis High School is closest to the border.

Mary Lynn Coleman is the principal at San Luis and sees the residency issue a problem beyond her school.

Students from Mexico attending school in the United States must have proper documentation, such as a birth certificate or student ID.

The documents need to be kept at all times on this of the border.

School officials are unable to police citizenship or a student's legal status.

Coleman says the district is only concerned about residency within the district boundaries.

Follow the link to see video. -mm


Students Go to Lengths to Attend Schools

Posted by Anthony Franklin, 11/22/2006

News 13's Bernadette Flores shows us the lengths students living in Mexico go to attend schools in the United States.

Follow the link to see video. -mm

Monday, November 27, 2006

Finally back home and back at it!

After six months on the road, it is good to be home and posting again! -mm

Mexican Drug Gang Runs Newspaper Ads

The Associated Press

“The family doesn't kill for money. It doesn't kill women. It doesn't kill innocent people, only those who deserve to die”.

A violent Mexican drug gang took out a rare, half-page ad in newspapers in which they claimed to be anti-crime vigilantes who wanted to stop kidnapping, robbery and the sale of methamphetamine in the western state of Michoacan.

The Family, a shadowy group believed to be allied to Mexico's Gulf drug cartel, has claimed responsibility in the past for bloody killings, such as a Sept. 6 attack in which gunmen dumped five severed human heads into a bar in the Michoacan city of Uruapan.

Those and other heads discovered since have been accompanied by hand-lettered, poorly spelled notes, but it was apparently the first time the group had taken out newspaper ads.

The newspaper El Sol of Morelia, 135 miles west of Mexico City, confirmed that the half-page ad ran in Wednesday's editions.

'Our only reason for being is that we love our state, and we are not willing to allow the dignity of our people to be trampled on,' according to the ad, signed 'Sincerely, The Michoacan Family.'

The ads blamed the violence and crime in largely rural Michoacan on 'the Milenio cartel, and some people named Valencia, and some gangs like the '30 Gang,' who have terrorized much of the state since the 1980s up to the present day.'

The Family appears to be fighting the Milenio Cartel _ which in turn is believed to be allied with the Sinaloa Cartel _ for control of drug trafficking routes in Michoacan.

Unelected Mexican Leftist Claims Office

Associated Press Writer

MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador swore himself in as Mexico's "legitimate" president Monday, launching a parallel government he hopes will prevent President-elect Felipe Calderon from governing.

The ceremony is the latest chapter in Lopez Obrador's unsuccessful battle for the presidency. He claims fraud and dirty campaign tactics were responsible for Calderon's narrow victory in the July 2 vote, and his parallel government could spend the next six years calling for street protests that have already dented the economy and prompted travel warnings from the U.S. Embassy.

Rosario Ibarra, a human rights activist and senator for Lopez Obrador's coalition, placed the presidential sash across his shoulders during Monday's ceremony. While the action lacks legal recognition, Lopez Obrador hopes to assume the moral leadership of millions of poor Mexicans.

"I pledge ... to serve loyally and patriotically as legitimate president of Mexico," Lopez Obrador said. "I pledge to protect the rights of Mexicans and to defend Mexico's sovereignty and patrimony, and ensure the happiness and welfare of the people."

Mexican pop singer gunned down

Valentin Elizalde and two others are killed leaving a concert. It's another apparent gangland ambush as drug cartels claim more victims.
By Héctor Tobar, Times Staff Writer
November 26, 2006

MEXICO CITY — A popular singer, his manager and his driver were gunned down Saturday in an ambush after a concert in the border city of Reynosa in an apparent gangland hit, as unabated drug-related violence continued across Mexico.

The singer, 27-year-old Valentin Elizalde, was killed about 20 minutes after he performed at a fair. Elizalde was a mainstay of the accordion-based norteno music variously known as banda or grupero, and was also known as "the Golden Rooster."

According to media reports, two vehicles chased Elizalde's black Suburban as he left the concert and opened fire with automatic weapons before dozens of witnesses. As many as 70 spent cartridges were found on the street around Elizalde's SUV. According to media reports, Elizalde was hit as many as eight times.

He also penned lyrics honoring one of Mexico's most notorious drug lords, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, leader of the Sinaloa cartel. Last year, he sang one of his narcocorridos, ballads honoring the exploits of drug dealers, to a crowd of more than 3,000 convicts at the Puente Grande prison in the central state of Jalisco.

Guzman escaped from a neighboring prison in 2001 and remains at large.

More than 2,000 people have been killed in the continuing war among competing cartels and the police over Mexico's lucrative trade in illicit drugs, according to media reports.

Illegal immigrants steal identities to get jobs


November 26, 2006

Record Staff Writer

STOCKTON - Ruben, a roofer living in Stockton, knew using a Social Security number that didn't belong to him was against the law.

He knew using it was a gamble that could get him deported to Mexico. And, if that happened, it could mean he might never be allowed to return.

It was a risk he was willing to take two years ago, as he worked in the United States illegally under an alias.

"Because they asked me for a Social Security number at work or they wouldn't pay me," said Ruben, speaking on the condition that his last name not be revealed. (Ruben is now a legal U.S. resident).

When most people think of identity fraud, checkbooks and credit cards come to mind. But a Social Security number or a birth certificate are equally, if not more, valuable to someone not able to work legally in the United States.

There are an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants living in the United States. San Joaquin County is home to about 42,000 migrant workers, legal and illegal.

Undocumented workers find identities in different ways. Some by drawing Social Security numbers out of the air.

Some by borrowing identities from family members or friends. Some by buying forged documents on the streets or from coyotes - people smugglers.

The identities they adopt sometimes are those of actual people; others are complete fabrications.

Runaway illegitimacy is creating a new U.S. underclass.

Hispanic Family Values?
Heather Mac Donald
Autumn 2006

Unless the life chances of children raised by single mothers suddenly improve, the explosive growth of the U.S. Hispanic population over the next couple of decades does not bode well for American social stability. Hispanic immigrants bring near–Third World levels of fertility to America, coupled with what were once thought to be First World levels of illegitimacy. (In fact, family breakdown is higher in many Hispanic countries than here.) Nearly half of the children born to Hispanic mothers in the U.S. are born out of wedlock, a proportion that has been increasing rapidly with no signs of slowing down. Given what psychologists and sociologists now know about the much higher likelihood of social pathology among those who grow up in single-mother households, the Hispanic baby boom is certain to produce more juvenile delinquents, more school failure, more welfare use, and more teen pregnancy in the future.

The dimensions of the Hispanic baby boom are startling. The Hispanic birthrate is twice as high as that of the rest of the American population. That high fertility rate—even more than unbounded levels of immigration—will fuel the rapid Hispanic population boom in the coming decades

But it’s the fertility surge among unwed Hispanics that should worry policymakers. Hispanic women have the highest unmarried birthrate in the country—over three times that of whites and Asians, and nearly one and a half times that of black women, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Every 1,000 unmarried Hispanic women bore 92 children in 2003 (the latest year for which data exist), compared with 28 children for every 1,000 unmarried white women, 22 for every 1,000 unmarried Asian women, and 66 for every 1,000 unmarried black women. Forty-five percent of all Hispanic births occur outside of marriage, compared with 24 percent of white births and 15 percent of Asian births. Only the percentage of black out-of-wedlock births—68 percent—exceeds the Hispanic rate.

Couple the high and increasing illegitimacy rate of Hispanics with their higher overall fertility rate, and you have a recipe for unstoppable family breakdown.

Police chief, city councilman killed in northern Mexico


MONTERREY, Mexico – A police chief and a councilman were shot and killed Thursday in a Mexican border state where drug-fueled violence has increased and a string of law enforcement officers have been killed.

Police chief Baltazar Gomez and Osvaldo Rodriguez, both of the Monterrey suburb of Santa Catarina, were killed just after midnight by a gunman who followed them inside a convenience store where they had gone after attending a funeral, police said. A Santa Catarina city councilwoman accompanying the men was wounded.

Gomez, who had been police chief for three weeks, was the sixth law enforcement official killed this year in Nuevo Leon state, across the border from Texas.

3 die in fire; short circuit suspected

Illegal hook-ups common in Tijuana
By Anna Cearley

TIJUANA – Samuel Alberto Vazquez Fierro, 22, tried to save his wife and two young children as flames consumed their home, made of wood and cardboard, yesterday morning.

Now he's being treated for burns over 80 percent of his body, and firefighters say he might not survive. His wife and sons died in the blaze.

It is common for poorer residents to siphon electricity from power lines. The illegal connections are called “diablitos,” and they often short-circuit, which was what led to yesterday's fire in a section of the city called Colonia Salvatierra, said fire chief Marco Antonio Sanchez Navarro.

“We haven't been able to figure out exactly where it started because it consumed the entire house,” he said. “The mother and children were trapped inside, and the neighbors said the father tried to get them outside.”

Sanchez said firefighters arrived at the scene 15 minutes after they got the call but had no access to a water line. The crew used their own portable water tanks to prevent the fire from spreading. A nearby house was partly burned, Sanchez said.

-As winter sets in and the nights get cold in the desert, this will happen more and more. -mm

Nearly 1,000 criminal aliens charged with immigration violations


CHARLOTTE, NC - U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office announced today that nearly 1,000 criminal aliens had been identified and charged with immigration violations thanks to a partnership between the agencies. One hundred and twenty eight of those identified have already been deported.

U.S. Representative Sue Myrick (NC-9) praised the early success of the program: “This new program changes how North Carolina responds to illegal aliens. This program provides us with some much-needed back up and real results.”

"The mission of the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office is to protect the citizens of Mecklenburg County," says Sheriff Jim Pendergraph. "I take those words very seriously. The 287(g) program is just another way to successfully remove from our country illegal aliens who prey on our citizens and commit crimes in our community."

“The ultimate goal of partnership is to improve public safety and homeland security, and the efforts here in Mecklenburg County are an example of how effective we can be when we work together,” said Department of Homeland Security Assistant Secretary Julie Myers. “Our message to those individuals who think they can break our immigration laws and prey upon our communities is simple: You are mistaken. Together, we will find you and deport you.”

Incursions at US-Mexico Border Create Tension

by Jim Kouri, CPP

November 26, 2006 11:00 PM EST

Customs and Border Protection Bureau officials conceded that Border Patrol agents crossed into Mexico while pursuing drug smugglers, but they also said the incursion was only about 27 feet and the agents acted while in hot pursuit of armed drug traffickers.

Law enforcement officials this writer spoke with say they are appalled at outrage expressed by the Mexican government and some lawmakers on Capitol Hill over the incident.

"The agents were following their adrenaline and dealing with a tense situation following a drug trafficking attempt," Border Patrol spokesman Doug Mosier told AP.

"We've always had a very good working relationship with Mexico. We're perplexed."

The incident has caused many to call the Mexican government hypocritical since Mexican police and soldiers have entered the US on several occasions. Mexican officials characterized US border agents chasing suspects "a breach of Mexican sovereignty." They said that the Mexican federal police have started a full investigation into this one incident.

U.S. crackdown sends meth labs south of border

Mexico inherits a problem that was long California's.

By Richard Marosi
Times Staff Writer

November 26, 2006

GUADALAJARA — The methamphetamine laboratories that once plagued California's hinterlands and powered a national explosion of drug abuse have been replaced by an increasing supply from Mexico, U.S. law enforcement officials say.

Methamphetamine production has surged south of the border, from Baja California ranches to the highlands of Michoacan to the industrial parks here in Mexico's second largest city, where authorities in January busted the largest laboratory ever discovered in the Americas.

The fortress-like compound ringed by high brick walls housed 11 custom-designed pressure cookers that could produce 400 pounds of the drug per day. It dwarfed anything ever found in California, where the standard cooking tool is a 23-quart beaker and a 20-pound batch is considered a good production day.

"It was the mother lode of mother lodes," a U.S. law enforcement official said.

The boom in Mexican methamphetamine production stems from successful efforts in the U.S. to control the sale of chemicals used to produce the drug, including the cold medicine pseudoephedrine.

Drug traffickers, some of them ex-convicts and fugitives from the United States, including a former chemistry professor from Idaho arrested last month, authorities say, have resettled in Mexico because of the easy access to pseudoephedrine and other chemicals.

The largest share of the chemicals is believed to be shipped to Mexico from factories in China and India and routed through Hong Kong. China has emerged as the top concern for U.S. authorities.

Like traffic in heroin and cocaine, the methamphetamine economy has become a global phenomenon. So too is the battle to control what most U.S. law enforcement authorities consider the country's greatest drug threat.

109 entrants discovered at drop house

Border Patrol: Crossers crammed into 3-bedroom home in Rio Rico
By Dale Quinn

A team of plainclothes Border Patrol agents found 109 illegal entrants Tuesday in squalid living conditions in a drop house about 60 miles south of Tucson, authorities said Wednesday.

The illegal border crossers were arrested, the home was seized, and six illegal entrants will likely face prosecution for human smuggling in connection with the operation of the drop house, said Sean King a U.S. Border Patrol spokesman.

The case began when agents in Rio Rico — an area known for human smuggling — saw a vehicle with several passengers and later saw that same vehicle with no passengers, King said.

They questioned the driver and found out he was in the country illegally, and he led them to the drop house, King said. Border Patrol agents seized the vehicle.

King said living conditions in such drop houses — where smugglers hold illegal entrants until they can move them north — can be abhorrent. The entrants use buckets for toilets because the overloaded plumbing gets clogged. The homes aren't cleaned as migrants move through them, and unsanitary conditions escalate, he said.

In this case, more than 100 illegal entrants were crammed into a three-bedroom home littered with soiled clothing and garbage, King said. Several women and children were preparing food in a kitchen littered with paper plates.

- It's interesting to note that this publication has taken "PC" to a new level in calling the illegal aliens "entrants". -mm

Navarrette: Fox's birthplace gaffe rings true for Mexico's elite


Published: 11.24.2006

Mexican President Vicente Fox recently raised eyebrows north of the border when he said that Mexicans ought to be grateful for their heritage and asked them to imagine what life would be like had they been born in - gasp! - the United States.

Well, for one thing, they'd have a much shorter commute to work.

No doubt about it. Fox has the gift of gaffe.

He compared a fence along the U.S.-Mexican border to "the Berlin Wall," boasted that Mexican immigrants in the U.S. are "doing jobs that not even blacks want to do," called border enforcement measures "disgraceful and shameful," and characterized the Minuteman Project as a bunch of "migrant-hunting" vigilantes.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Presidential Proclamation of Thanksgiving


Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor - and Whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me "to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness."
Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be – That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks – for his kind care and protection of the People of this country previous to their becoming a Nation – for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his providence, which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war –for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed – for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted, for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.
And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions – to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually – to render our national government a blessing to all the People, by constantly being a government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed – to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord – To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and Us – and generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.
Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

It is right that we, as a nation, should give thanks!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Texas puts 'virtual border watch' online

Fri Nov 3, 11:20 AM ET

Texas has started broadcasting live images of the U.S. border on the Internet in a security program that asks the public to report signs of illegal immigration or drug crimes.

A test Web site went live Thursday at with views from eight cameras and ways for viewers to e-mail reports of suspicious activity. Previously, the images had only been available to law enforcement and landowners where the cameras are located.

"There is only one way to test it, and that's open it up for business," said Texas Homeland Security Director Steve McCraw.

Some civil rights groups have criticized the "virtual border watch," saying it will instill fear in border communities and could lead to fraudulent crime reports and racial profiling.

The cameras will operate at hot spots for illegal activity, such as Amistad Reservoir in Del Rio and Falcon Lake in Zapata, and other active border areas such as highway rest stops and inspection stations, officials said. Information e-mailed by viewers goes to the state's operations center and local law enforcement in that area.

View on the web at Texas Border Watch.