Former Border Agents: Media Assault Against Border Patrol Endangers US
Amid increasing criticism emanating from left-leaning media outlets, The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO) claimed if the media assault continues, America will become weaker and less secure.
The group said in an official statement submitted to Breitbart Texas, "This media campaign is an intentional weakening of America’s defenses through political deception. Those supporting this campaign are working to destroy America."
Zack Taylor, Chairman of NAFBO, told Breitbart Texas that demonizing Border Patrol agents for using self-defense tactics makes the border--and the entire country--less secure.
"As the United States Border Patrol continues to successfully interrupt transnational criminal activity along the border, those same criminals continue to accelerate the violence by initiating well planned assaults with rocks, automobiles, firearms and other weapons," Taylor wrote in a statement.
Breitbart Texas reported in February 2014 that 41-year-old Jesus Flores-Cruz--a Mexican citizen who investigators claim was most likely in the U.S. illegally--began throwing rocks at a Border Patrol Agent from a hillside. The rocks being thrown gradually got larger--one the size of a basketball—striking the agent in the head. The agent, who remains unidentified, claimed that he fired warning shots two times when he began to fear for his life. After Flores-Cruz refused to stop throwing rocks, the agent shot him dead.
The incident outraged many activists on the left. Terri Burke, Executive Director for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Texas, told the El Paso Times there needed to be more scrutiny of shootings by Border Patrol Agents.
"We believe somebody really needs to put their feet to the fire," Burke said, adding that 22 individuals have been killed by agents on the border since 2010.
Chairman Taylor countered that over 6,000 Border Patrol Agents have been assaulted since 2007. He said agents only shoot when their lives are in danger.
"America is not being told the truth by the media," he told Breitbart Texas.
Earlier in March 2014 an alleged member of the Mexican Knights Templar cartel, 34-year-old Manuel Plancarte Gaspar, was arrested by police in Michoacán, according to Breitbart Texas. Gaspar was suspected of killing young children by removing their internal organs. Taylor said Border Patrol agents must have the ability to effectively do their jobs in order to keep high-level criminals such as Gaspar out of the U.S.
"America is not prepared to deal with people this criminally-minded," Taylor warned. "We cannot comprehend the type of punishment and isolation that these people need to have. They need to be executed, but America is moving away from that idea."
Breitbart Texas Managing Director Brandon Darby has reported extensively on the left's continued effort to "limit effectiveness" of Border Patrol. Although groups such as the ACLU claim that Border Patrol Agents must "live up to the same standards larger, metropolitan police forces must meet," Darby pointed out that agents on the border face challenges that are not present in big cities. For instance, Border Patrol Agents are often alone in rural areas where their radios do not work. If agents were not allowed to defend themselves, they would be less likely to patrol remote areas where they have no back-up. This could ultimately result in large areas of the border being left unpatrolled and left wide open.
The organization of former Border Patrol argues the efforts by leftist groups such as the ACLU could prevent agents from protecting the U.S. Border effectively. Taylor said, "Carefully ignored are the facts that both governmental and non-governmental entities inside the United States continue to do the bidding of these transnational criminals by discrediting those who disrupt cross border criminal activity aimed at American citizens."
Follow Kristin Tate on Twitter @KristinBTate