By Lucio R. Borderland Beat- some material used from Luengas Noticias and WSJ
A then president elect, Enrique Peña Nieto took a firm position of not allowing armed foreign agents.
At the time he said;
“I resolutely do not support the presence of armed U.S. agents in Mexico, but would consider allowing the United States to instruct Mexico's military training in counterinsurgency tactics.”
That was then.
Now, the Mexican Senate has approved the "initiative"of President Enrique Peña Nieto, that would allow foreign agents to carry weapons within the territory of Mexico, arguing they contribute to tourism and immigration and customs control.
The representatives of the PRI political party, along with the PAN and PVEM (green party), gave the green light to the legislation, which senators of the PRD and PT (labor party) opposed.
Mexican Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Meade defended the measure, arguing that will contribute to greater integration of the region of North America.
However many Mexican’s and leaders alike, are not only leery about the initiative, some are damn right peeved and outraged. Like Senator Manuel Bartlett.
Taking the floor the senator’s prophecy is that the names of the senators who make up this term will go down in history "as an abject Senate that fulfilled the commands of the neighboring foreign power to flood our country of armed foreign agents".
|U.S. Agent gives a thumbs up before boarding helicopter|
U.S. Agents disguising themselves as Mexican Navy personnel
In a Wall Street Journal article published in 2013 and updated in November 2014, there was the following:
"U.S. Justice Department personnel are disguising themselves as Mexican Marines to take part in armed raids against drug suspects in Mexico, according to people familiar with the matter, an escalation of American involvement in battling drug cartels that carries significant risk to U.S. personnel. Both the U.S. and Mexican governments have acknowledged in the past that American law-enforcement agencies operate in Mexico providing intelligence support to Mexican military units battling the cartels. The countries have described the U.S. role as a supporting one only.
In reality, said the people familiar with the work, about four times a year the U.S. Marshals Service sends a handful of specialists into Mexico who take up local uniforms and weapons to hide their role hunting suspects, including some who aren’t on a U.S. wanted list. They said agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Drug Enforcement Administration play a supporting role, in similarly small numbers."
"The risks became clear on July 11, 2012 when Mexican Marines and a handful of U.S. Marshals personnel dressed as Mexican Marines were fired on as they walked through a remote field in Sinaloa state. One American was shot and wounded, and in the gunfight that followed, more than a half-dozen suspected cartel soldiers were killed, according to people familiar with the incident. It is unclear whether U.S. Marshals personnel shot anyone.
Members of the FBI, DEA and Marshals Service met with a group of Mexican Marines in preparation for a Friday raid. The goal was to apprehend a senior member of Los Mazatlecos, a gang of enforcers with ties to the Beltran Leyva drug cartel.
A handful of Marshals specialists dressed themselves as Mexican Marines and took Marines weapons. As they and the Mexican Marines set off on foot, a small plane flown by a U.S. Marshals employee kept an eye on the target site, advising colleagues on the ground who in turn guided those on foot. DEA and FBI personnel remained a mile or so away in an armored vehicle, observing and advising.
The men walked through a field toward the site. As they approached a line of bushes, hidden gunmen opened fire. A U.S. Marshals employee with the rank of inspector was shot in the arm and fell. A Mexican Marine rushed to carry him to safety and was also hit. Then another shot struck the American in the torso.
After the firefight, the wounded American was airlifted to a hospital in Culiacán, where he was kept under guard until he could be moved to a hospital in San Antonio."
Read the full WSJreport by Devlin Bartlett link here