Why Not Naco?
By Glenn Spencer, March 16, 2007

Here we go again, mass confusion and obfuscation on the border. On October 26 last year, nearly six months ago, President Bush signed the Secure Fence Act of 2006. The SFA was approved by a yes vote of 67% of the House of Representatives and 81% of the Senate. This is not trivial.

The American People want a secure border and the Congress and the President agreed.

The act says:

"Not later than 18 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall take all actions the Secretary determines necessary and appropriate to achieve and maintain operational control over the entire international land and maritime borders of the United States.

`operational control' means the prevention of all unlawful entries into the United States, including entries by terrorists, other unlawful aliens, instruments of terrorism, narcotics, and other contraband."

So Secretary Chertoff has 18 months from October 26, 2006, to secure our borders.

The SFA goes on to say

"In carrying out subsection (a), the Secretary of Homeland Security shall provide for least 2 layers of reinforced fencing, the installation of additional physical barriers, roads, lighting, cameras, and sensors."

It then specifies the location of a the two layers of reinforced fencing.

Nearly six months have passed since the SFA was signed by the President. How much of the two-layered fence has been built? None. Some work has been started on fencing near Yuma, Arizona, and a vehicle barrier has been started on the Goldwater Bombing Range east of Yuma. But what of the rest of the border? Little or nothing is being done.
Mexican Smuggling Road. This photo was taken on March 6, 2007. It shows a dirt road under construction just west of the San Pedro River.

 

Let's take a look at the border patrolled by the Naco Border Patrol Station. This section of the border is under siege. The Ladd Ranch sits right in the middle, with ten miles of border frontage. This is where Chris Simcox took money from people to build an Israeli-Style Fence. (He ended up repairing part of a stock fence.)

Simcox started another fence east of Naco, but construction was halted in November after less than half had been completed. (This private fence idea is silly because more than 90% of the land along the Arizona border with Mexico is controlled by government entities.)

Naco also includes the San Pedro River. This is where American Border Patrol has smuggled simulated weapons of mass destruction across the border and into American towns many times.

As reported by ABP, recent weeks have seen a flood of illegal aliens and drugs across the Naco section. It has documented this using its powerful Border Cam. On one occasion a large group of aliens were reported as they approached the border. Despite having full knowledge of the group, including its size and location (the same information that a "virtual fence" would provide) the aliens overwhelmed the Border Patrol by "quailing", or running into the nearby hills and washes. A double fence would have stopped this.

Recently the Mexicans began building a road along the border. It leads from the San Pedro River to a point south of the Coronado National Monument, an increasingly favorite crossing point. This a smuggling road, pure and simple, and the Mexican government must know about it.

There is a crying need for a fence in the Naco Section. There are already cameras and sensors all along the Naco Section, however rancher Ladd is constantly harassed by Border Patrol Agents chasing illegal aliens across his ranch. And many of the illegals make it through because of deep washes or because the Border Patrol is simply overwhelmed.

There are no major impediments to the construction of a two-layered border fence in the Naco Section. The terrain is relatively flat and any minor environmental concerns could be handled. And, it is included in the Secure Fence Act of 2006.

So where do we stand with the fence?

ABP operates on a ranch right on the border next to the San Pedro River. Before a fence could be started the government would have to work out arrangements with border landowners. No government representative has made contact with ABP regarding its border ranch. It is safe to say nothing is being done.

At a conference on the Secure Border Initiative (SBInet) held in Sierra Vista, I asked why the project didn't include consideration of the Secure Fence Act of 2006. A Boeing representative said his company was"activators" and did what the government wanted. Apparently the government doesn't want the double fence "activated."

It now seems clear that the Bush Administration has no intention of building the fence as specified in the Secure Fence Act of 2006. Was this legislation just another scam perpetrated on the American people?

The American people need an answer to this question and American Border Patrol and its Operation B.E.E.F. will continue to seek an honest answer.

Glenn Spencer