Mexican commandos new threat on border, now works for drug cartel


May 27, 2005, 08:52 PM
Mexican commandos
new threat on border
U.S.-trained elite force
now works for drug cartel

WASHINGTON Elite Mexican commandos, trained by U.S. forces to combat the drug cartels have switched sides and are working for the drug smugglers in the border area posing a special hazard to American law enforcement and Border Patrol agents, according to a U.S. Justice Department memo.

The commandos, trained by the U.S. Army at Fort Benning, Ga., are known as "Los Zetas."

The Justice Department warning was sent to law enforcement agencies throughout the Southwest.

Using the commando training, Los Zetas are known to be extremely violent and have been blamed for an outbreak of violence along the Mexican border.

There are reports of the commandos making cross-border runs into U.S. territory in military-style vehicles, armed with automatic weapons.

The U.S. government has spent millions of dollars training Los Zetas to intercept drugs, some of them coming from Mexico's southern border, before they could reach the U.S. The U.S. government has also sent U.S. Border Patrol agents to Mexico's southern border with Guatemala to train law enforcement and military forces to intercept human smugglers destined to reach the U.S.

"Things like that are a concern to us, especially trained here on the U.S. side," Pima County Sheriff Tony Estrada told KVOA, channel 4 in Tucson, Arizona. "They've gotten pretty special training. ... Now, they are working with drug traffickers on the Mexican side."

Lt. Ron Benson added: "Not only did they receive some early military training but they developed their own internal training as well increasing their violence far beyond their own original capabilities."

Benson has worked with the Department of Homeland Security and tracked the rogue Mexican commandos. He is now retiring from the Pima County Sheriff's Department and will be working with the FBI.

"They are a threat to authorities not only in Texas, but in New Mexico, Arizona and California," he said. "Because we believe Los Zetas are being used as protectors for narcotics coming into this country."

Benson says sons and nephews of Los Zetas are starting their own organization and taking part in the drug wars.

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Art Eatman
May 27, 2005, 09:21 PM
I read that, this AM, and have been trying to remember if I first read of it in the San Antonio Express back in February, or in the online edition of the Brownsville Herald sometime in late March. (Lessee: Ain't we about used up May?)

Nice to see the world is catching up, even if it's WND. Now, if the NYT or the WP would learn of this problem...

Anyhow, apparently these Zetas still have friends within the Mexican military, still have a source for RPGs--which they've used, upon occasion.


May 27, 2005, 09:44 PM
currently the state of the border, is one of the old west, all the drug cartels are in a turf war, for control of the storage and cross border points.... money speaks and the "commandos" are mostly doing the bidding of the cartels in mexico.. mexican to mexican contact, they know, a cross border operation, with armor and automatic weapons will bring the A-10's, blackhawks, and preditors...and to follow, the clean up garbage trucks. If the "commandos" wish to mix it up, with the special ops boys....the "commandos" will be meeting their dead ancestors

May 27, 2005, 09:45 PM
seems every time we train foreigners it backfires on us... nice how this worthless strategy is used repeatedly regardless of its past failures.

May 27, 2005, 10:14 PM
Oh noes, another golem turns on its master.

When will we learn to not train someone else to do an American's job? If we dont want something bad enough to do it ourselves, then it should be left undone.

Standing Wolf
May 27, 2005, 10:21 PM
More Great Victories in the famous war on some drugs!

May 27, 2005, 11:55 PM
Okay its one thing to have Mexican civilian criminals coming across our border, but when we have armed Mexican military units executing missions across our border I'd say that's an act of war.

Time to call ole Vinnie Fox up and demand his unconditional surrender or we unleash the US Marines upon him :D

May 28, 2005, 12:14 AM
Well, they couldn't get our Sheriff's name right - Clarance Dupnik has been our sheriff for years, a moderate anti. Don't know who that other guy is....

May 28, 2005, 12:42 AM
6 months or so ago I heard the federales were concerned with combat teams being inserted into the US from the southern border as a unit then moving to a target. Wonder is these guys are the basis of the concern.

May 28, 2005, 04:55 AM
The good news is that these Zetas are easy to spot. They are the ones with the tactical sombreros.

El Tejon
May 28, 2005, 08:59 AM
Wait, just a couple of months ago the Zetas were here infiltrating the great state of Tejas and committing unmitigated eeevil wherever something bad happened and people needed a boogie man to blame? We have met the enemy and . . . it's someone else!

"I see hysterical bearthread." :D

Art Eatman
May 28, 2005, 11:43 AM
Dunno 'bout "infiltrating"...I can see Zetas being used to escort the mules in exporting goodies to the US...But it seems more like the Zetas are in a turf war for control of a Plaza, and don't seem to care who gets hurt in the process--and have escalated as to the type of weaponry.

Given the type of military training, I'd imagine they're better organized about attacks on the competition.

I don't claim any great knowledge about the Mexican army guys. I've seen some in Ojinaga; they were mostly very young-looking, armed with an FAL-type critter. The officers looked older. They all looked very bored.

Overall, I go along with Terence Poppa's view (author of "Drug Lord", a biography of Pablo Acosta): People think the narcotrafficantes corrupted Mexico. 180 degrees off. The narcotrafficantes are cash cows, buying protection from a corrupt system designed to sell protection.


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