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I am a consultant and analyst with eight years of military law enforcement experience, six years of analytical experience covering Latin America, and over seven years of analytical experience covering Mexican TCOs and border violence issues. This blog is designed to inform readers about current border violence issues and provide analysis on those issues, as well as detailed focus on specific border topics. By applying my knowledge and experience through this blog, I hope to separate the wheat from the chaff...that is, dispel rumors propagated by sensationalist media reporting, explain in layman's terms what is going on with Mexican TCOs, and most importantly, WHY violence is happening along the US-Mexico border.

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With over a dozen years of combined experience in military law enforcement, force protection analysis, and writing a variety of professional products for the US Air Force, state government in California, and the general public, Ms. Longmire has the expertise to create a superior product for you or your agency to further your understanding of Mexico’s drug war. Longmire Consulting is dedicated to being on the cusp of the latest developments in Mexico in order to bring you the best possible analysis of threats posed by the drug violence south of the border.

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April 03, 2011

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You are both correct and incorrect at the same time. You are correct in that the figures concerning apprehensions are misleading, but incorrect in your understanding as why it is so. Long has the Border Patrol used the numbers game to present a picture of the border deemed appropriate at any given time. The numbers which they present can mean a variety of things, depending upon how the Border Patrol interprets the figures for us. What that means is a large number of arrests can show that the Border Patrol is functioning well and carrying out their stated mission, or it can show that the border is over ran and the Border Patrol needs infusion of large sums of cash, equipment and manpower thrown it’s way. In the case when lower numbers are reported the Patrol interprets those low numbers, today to represent a secure border, at least secure in some places. The Border Patrol can do this ( get away with this) because there is NO means in place to readily discount or contradict their figures. To more define this for you I will focus on the area of the border which you also made mention of, and which of course has been the area historically assigned to the Border Patrol, the area between the POE (s). In days gone by the border was largely defined in those areas by a simple cattle type fence made of posts and barbwire. In some places there may have also been a two-track dirt ranch type road paralleling the fence, but little more. Today much of that area is defined by tall steel fencing , vehicle barriers and large well graded roads which the Border Patrol generally uses as their primary ‘’cut & drag’’ for entry detection. All of this of course is supported by a host of fixed base cameras, ground sensors and air operations, and more.
If we compare the resources to include manpower, on that base alone Napolitano/ Bersin
are correct (at least in assuming that it should be) that the border is more secure today than ever before. Sadly most of us know that is not the case, and for the same reasons which should be as apparent to Napolitano/Bersin as they are for most us. Border security cannot be measured piecemeal, nor established in such fashion , as our government has been attempting to do. One could easily compare the Border Patrol’s strategy , and the outcome, to that of a battlefield commander reinforcing his front while leaving his flanks wide open. On that note, it would be one thing if such a commander was new to warfare and simply wasn’t wise enough to understand such a mistake, but quite another if he in fact understood the consequences that were sure to come from his actions. Concerning our border here, and the agency charged with securing it, the Border Patrol, most certainly were aware of the consequences to follow once the piecemeal fortification strategy was adopted. Not only aware that the IA’s that would be pushed out to the flanks ( the deserts) of these fortified areas, but which was the intended result of the strategy. Once this traffic had successfully been redirected to the flanks the previously over-ran communities could then be touted by the Border Patrol as to the success of their strategy, and that they had in fact ‘’stopped’’ X amount of IA’s from entering the country. However what they didn’t tell Congress nor the American public was the fact that they hadn’t ‘’stopped’’ a damn thing. All of the traffic had simply been shifted to the flanks where they were easily smuggled into the country, and VIA the new flank routes into the back-door of these now supposedly secured communities. Then as now the Border had no idea as to the true numbers nor makeup of those diverted, because they never made contact with them. For all intents and purposes once the IA’s had been diverted the Border Patrol ( at least management) were happy campers…mission accomplished!
Now here we are almost twenty years later , and 4 $billion dollars a year later, in the same damn sinking boat, just with slightly fewer holes, and a slightly different twist. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, three and four times, and you can call me Congressman. One final note before I call this deal done here: In reference to Bersin and the Border Patrols numbers. It really doesn’t matter what number is presented, because just like the old shell game where the pea has been removed from play, the counted Illegal Aliens have already crossed again and reached their final destination before the news paper the numbers appeared in was even printed! They ALL make it eventually.

Fred

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