A while ago, during a conference at the Army's war college, Prof Andrew Bacevich made a comment that the United States had a greater national security interest in the drug wars south of the border than in Afghanistan. He probably got a lot of criticism for that statement, but was he wrong? I don't think so. This AP article talks about the bullets that are flying over the river into El Paso.
At least eight bullets have been fired into El Paso in the last few weeks from the rising violence in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, one of the world's most dangerous places. And all American police can do is shrug because they cannot legally intervene in a war in another country. The best they can do is warn people to stay inside.
"There's really not a lot you can do right now," El Paso County Sheriff Richard Wiles said. "Those gun battles are breaking out everywhere, and some are breaking out right along the border."
Police say the rounds were not intentionally fired into the U.S. But wildly aimed gunfire has become common in Juarez, a sprawling city of shanty neighborhoods that once boomed with manufacturing plants. It's ground zero in Mexico's relentless drug war.
There is an amusing side to this story (in a twisted kind of way). Of all people, Governor Rick "Let Us Secede From the Union" Perry is losing his cool and is calling for the federales to come save him from the border war. He thinks that there are bombs going off in El Paso (actually not happening). Again, back to the AP article:
And Monday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry issued a statement demanding more security.
"It's time for Washington to stop the rhetoric and immediately deploy a significant force of personnel and resources to the border to protect our homeland," Perry said.
Katherine Cesinger, a Perry spokeswoman, said the governor believes that more security - in the form of federal agents and even troops - could all but shut down the border to smuggling and help put Mexico's warring cartels out of business.
No, it's not that simple, Gov. Perry. You don't get to bad-mouth the federal government only when it's politically convenient. You don't get to refuse federal stimulus funds and make wild statements about "state rights" and then turtle up when the shots start firing. As governor, you have the ability to move National Guard troops down to the border - go do it. Send some Tea Party militias and Minutemen people, too. Make sure they're well-armed - well, I guess you don't need to do that, they already are. So where are your balls, big man? Are you running a self-sufficient Republic or is Texas actually part of the Union?
Just another example of Republican governors who can't stop running to the federal treasury while badmouthing the current administration's attempts to govern. Same shit, different day.