Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

It's the border, stupid

By Aussiegirl

Dispatches from the border. Salena Zito of the Pittsburgh Tribune has been down there and seen for herself what we are up against. Here's her report from this past April. I'm sure the situation hasn't gotten any better since then. Nothing like a first-hand look.

Salena Zito - It's the border, stupid - Pittsburgh Tribune

There is no homeland security without border security.

Americans sitting in the heartland may not be sweating over border issues but Webb County, Texas, Sheriff Rick Flores thinks they should be.

"Any sheriff, whether they are in Dallas, Iowa or even Nebraska, would much prefer that we squash a threat at the border than force them to deal with it after it gets through us," the sheriff told me in his office here.

"Smugglers have a ready-made infrastructure in place ... and they are just waiting to substitute terrorists and their cargoes for drugs if the price is right."

Flores and 15 other Lone Star sheriffs along the Mexican border banded together in May 2005 to address drug cartels warring over the control of narcotics, human smuggling and a natural offshoot -- the likelihood of a terrorist migration into the United States.

[...]"How can we reasonably say that al-Qaida or Hezbollah has not passed through here?"

The problem essentially is that terrorists get into the United States under the guise of being people looking for work," former CIA Director James Woolsey told me.

"For example, in the tri-border area" -- where Brazil, Venezuela and Uruguay meet -- "Hezbollah has been a major presence for years and many of its people speak Spanish and might seem merely to be people looking for work."

There's a thought that doesn't come up in immigration debate: Hezbollah in the Western Hemisphere.


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