Posted: Nov 12 2014
RICE UNIVERSITY 2/21/2012
James A.Baker III Institute for Public Policy
TEXAS SECURITY FORUM:
NATIONAL SECURITY THREATS AT OUR SOUTHWEST BORDER
Michael T. McCaul, US House of Representatives, 10th District, Tx.
Chmn. of the Oversight, Investigations and Management Subcmt.
I was in attendance last night at the Texas Security Forum with our own Congressman McCaul, a true Texas Patriot. You can file this report under " all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing". Congressman McCaul began by reviewing the current threat dynamics along our border with Mexico. In the last five years over 53,000 Mexicans have lost their lives in the violence wrought by the gangs in their contest for control. He informed us the amount of money derived from drugs, smuggling, human trafficking, extortion, kidnapping and money laundering is greater than the Gross Domestic Product of Central America and the Caribbean Combined. When discussing the Zeta's in particular, he stated they were in 300 American cities, including Houston.
He typified the recent attack upon American Agents, in which one of them lost his life, as a "game-changer". The Gangs willingness to take American Law Enforcement Officers "head-on" is a new escalation in the level of threat. He informed us there is a new Inspector General Investigation within Homeland Security to dig into the debacle of "Fast and Furious". He opined that the threats to our National Security are no longer halfway around the world but are now next door. This was illustrated by a slide presentation of cowering school children at a middle-school that had been shot up by extortionists. A viewing of the armored car in which the American Agents had been ambushed in, and in which one had lost his life.
The Gang was so brazen they attempted to assassinate the surviving Agent at the hospital where he was being treated for his wounds. A photo of a slain Mexican Police Officer, who gave his life for Mexican Justice, paled in the horror of six severed heads that had been thrown unto the dance floor of a nightclub. I hadn't seen that kind of brutality since the butchery I had witnessed by the North Vietnamese against the people of South Vietnam. Mr.McCaul reported to us on Operation Titan aimed at exposing the cooperation of the Border Gangs with Hezbollah in the international trafficking of drugs and money laundering. He wondered aloud at what point would this cooperation become an operational force for the Iranians.
He informed us that Director of Intelligence, James T. Clapper believed this situation was changing and threatened to develop into an operational force within the United States. He brought up the ever developing cyber-threat, exampled by the STUXNET virus. One fifth of the centrifuges at the Iranian nuclear development facility had been compromised by it. He remarked that the newly applied banking sanctions were having a crippling impact upon the Iranian economy and they were starting to show desperation. He re-emphasized how necessary it was to keep all options on the table but observed
"the appetite for war is not high in this country". He reflected on how the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction was undercut when death is not a deterrent.