Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Mexico: Operativo Salim

A couple of days ago we received information from an anonymous person telling us about information that this person wanted to share with us. Without giving it any thought we said sure. We received some documents that appear to be official and did not appear to have been published anywhere else. One particular document that caught our attention was a Naval Ministry intelligence report stamped June 10, 2010. Along with the file was a message from the anonymous source that included the following:


In addition to the above described document, we also received a copy of an official voter ID with the name of Arturo Hernandez Hernandez that appears to be the alleged Ahmed described in the document.

First and foremost, we want to make it clear that we have no way to confirm the validity of these documents, but we present it for the content it represents, readers must form their own conclusion as to the validity of such document.

However, other documents stamped Confidential Naval Ministry that were received from the anonymous source were shown to a member of Mexico's security establishment who confirmed their validity.

As the Iranian backed plot to assassinate Saudi Arabia's Ambassador to the U.S. unfolds in the media we are faced with the question of what is the true level of risk that a terrorist attack by Islamic militants or contracted agents aimed at the United States would come from across our southern border.

According to the intelligence analysts at Stratfor, "The threat is much smaller than it might initially seem — in part because of close U.S.-Mexican cooperation and primarily because the threat of U.S. retaliation on any organization that participates in terrorist activities is extremely high."

Alonzo Peña, a former ICE deputy director, was equally confident of the low risk of attack against the United States originating in Mexico.

In a story published in the San Antonio Express-News, Peña stated, "I think it's very highly unlikely any of the main cartels would get themselves involved in something like that.”

“These guys are in business to make money. They're driven by greed and by profit, but they're not stupid.”

However, the documents leaked by the anonymous source to Borderland Beat, together with ongoing criminal cases in the U.S. federal court system, paint a more complicated picture of what the risk may actually be.

In particular, the risk posed by the Somali based militant Islamic terrorist organization "Al Shabaab" (The Youth in Arabic) is highlighted.

Al Shabaab has strong links to Al Qaeda, and its latest suicide bombing in the Somali capitol of Mogadishu resulted in the deaths of more than eighty people.

In July 2010, Al Shabab was responsible for the deaths of over eighty people in bombings at bars in the Kampala, Uganda as fans watched a World Cup match.

The documents posted below are from a confidential report written by Mexican Naval intelligence and includes an analysis of evidence gathered in a raid between the days of June 7 and June 10, 2010 on a hotel room in Mexico City occupied by an individual identified as AHMED, allegedly a member of Al Shabaab.

Included in the report is a photograph of a Mexican voter's picture ID card identifying AHMED as Artuto Hernandez Hernandez, a Mexican citizen.

                         Title page of archive "Operation Salim"

Translation of confidential Naval Ministry intelligence report stamped June 10, 2010

Mexico D.F. June 10, 2010

Report of evidence in custody

In room #12S (128?)the following was found:

1-A cylinder shaped cardboard container holding 22.7 kilograms of high explosives and sealed with a paraffin compound. Two copper cables sheathed in plastic were inserted into the paraffin.

2-An orange colored thick fabric suitcase containing 2 Motorola c115 cellphones without batteries, 4 Motorola multichannel radios with chargers, 1 Radioshack frequency counter, latex gloves, 1 dark green notebook with Arabic and Spanish writing, 1 small prayer rug with Islamic motifs, 1 bar of body soap, 1 toothbrush, 1 sealed box of toothpaste, 1 liter of nitric acid, 5 liters of pure glycerin, 1 plastic bag containing 5 fuses (3 slow burn and 3 rapid burn), 1 kilogram of gunpowder containing aluminum, 10 meters of yellow/red colored detonation cord, 5 (illegible)__opines, 150 grams of mercury.

In the interior of the toothpaste box was a 2cm x 2cm piece of photographic paper imprinted with the logo of the armed Islamic extremist Islamic group AL SHABAB, attached with brown adhesive tape.

North American authorities informed us that intelligence agents attached to the Israeli embassy have been following the trail of the alleged terrorist of Somali nationality named AHMED, who allegedly belongs to the Islamic extremist organization mentioned above, and attached is a photograph and counterfeit credential. We also have information that the explosives were to be used in an attempt against the United States embassy in Mexico and also other objectives such as consulates.

Intelligence sources from the Israeli embassy in our country maintain that AHMED has been staying since Monday June 7th at the Hotel Puebla, located on the street of the same name Puebla and 1 and ½ blocks from the home of Merida #_2, as video from surveillance cameras within the hotel show.

Photo ID of Ahmed/Arturo Hernandez Hernandez

The documents above pose many questions:

Are they valid? There is a possibility that they are although it is impossible to independantly confirm their validity.

If this operation against Al Shabab did occur, who undertook it?

How did AHMED obtain the bomb making materials and a voter ID card? How well was his mission financed and planned?

What is the fate of AHMED?

The anonymous source's assertion that the U.S. Government had no knowledge of the operation seems improbable.

Mexico's security establishment is believed to be heavily infiltrated by U.S. intelligence agencies since the days of the Cold War. Although corrupt officials in government and law enforcement have often thwarted U.S. antidrug efforts, Mexico has always been a stalwart supporter of the U.S. against external enemies, from Communists to Islamic extremists.

Other aspects of Al Shabaab's presence in Mexico are highlighted in cases against U.S. citizens of Somali and non-Somali heritage, and resident Somali citizens in the U.S. federal court system.

Dozens of these young men have been recruited by Al Shabab agents in the U.S., especially from the large Somali expatriate community in Minnesota. These men have left for training and fighting in Somalia. Some have died, others are in U.S. custody, and others remain fugitives.

The following excerpt is from a criminal complaint in the U.S. District Court in Minnesota against two Al Shabaab operatives, Cabdulaahi Ahmed Farrax and Abdiweli Yassin Isse. Isse is in U.S. custody while Farrax remains at large.

28. On October 8, 2009 between 7 and 7:30 AM, FAARAX and ISSE were identified by a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol Officer as two of three individuals dropped off by a taxi cab at the United States/Mexico border at the San Ysidro border crossing, (located South of San Diego). FAARAX and ISSE told the Officer that they would be flying from Tijuana airport to Mexico City airport and displayed airline tickets to the Officer.

Another criminal complaint in the U.S. District Court in Virginia details the case of Anthony Joseph Tracy, a U.S. citizen who converted to Islam while in prison and subsequently ran a human smuggling operation out of Kenya, illegally bringing Somali citizens into the U.S.

Tracy was detained in 2010 and although he denied smuggling Al Shabaab operatives into the U.S., that possibility cannot be ignored. Tracy obtained Cuban travel visas in Kenya for his Somali clients, allowing travel to Cuba and subsequently into the U.S. illegally through Mexico.

It is probable that the smuggling of Tracy's Somali clients from Mexico to the U.S. was handled by Mexican human smuggling rings at enormous financial profit, and human smuggling is coming increasingly under the direct control of major Mexican drug cartels.

It is also unknown how many other smuggling operations similar to Tracy's exist in problematic countries such as Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan or Pakistan.

To say that Mexico's drug cartels would police themselves and defer the hefty profits of smuggling these people into the U.S. should no longer be accepted as conventional wisdom. Even if they unwittingly smuggle potential terrorists into the U.S, the damage has already been done.

If these drug cartels have proven anything by their actions in Mexico, it is that financial gain will be obtained at almost any cost.


Gerardo and Ovemex contributed to this article.


  1. Honestly I don't believe this crap. "These are not organizations looking to make easy money or engage in other violent political proclamations specially in other countries. The Mexican cartels already face their own problems, as the battles between them and against the Government. Any foray into international terrorism would be bad for business".
    "What they want (the cartels) is to make their business in secret, not to do someone else's job,"

    I might be wrong but this is what I think.

  2. "I might be wrong but this is what I think"...

    You're wrong and its obvious you didn't think it through...

    Variations of this sort of criminal action have been taking place along the borders since at least the sixties...

    Back in the sixties the malvenos were Cubans instead of people from the middle east...


  4. juandos I also remember when U.S sold weapons to Saddam Hussein and then latter they accused him of having weapons of mass destruction, no evidence was ever found. The only evidence they had is the one they produced. None the lees if you read the news you will see that is not only me the one who thinks this is all bull shit.
    You are trying to tell me that a cartel will bring heat to a multy million dollars bussyness for only a few thousend.

  5. Don't confuse probability with possibility. Islamoterrorists don't care about consequences. They just want to strike at the U.S. The narcoterrorists have been known to strike at innocent people in an effort to propagandize. As log as the threat coming across our southern border is possible, it remains a threat. Let's hope that the possible does not bcome probable then inevitable. Contingency plans should not be solely reactionary. We need real border security.

  6. BTW, WMD were claimed by Saddam. My armored scout squadron found a mobile lab at a remote, dessert missle site in Iraq circa 2003. It did not make news because our organic NBC section tested for and did not find banned substances. The lab though convinced me' that WMD chemicals were hidden and available. The Kurds also believe that Saddam had WMD. I disagree with the 'Bush lied' crowd. Sorry if off topic but I had to respond to the earlier comment.

  7. Of course Saddam had weapons of destruction...The U.S sold them the nerve gas that they used on the kurds...As far as you finding a " mobile lab " maybe you did but it was irrelevent..Saudi Arabia has weapons of mass destruction...The only difference between them is that saddam wasnt cooperating with big oil...So they took it.

  8. Obvious Cia plant. Throw in joo intelligence to make it look real what's next? Saddams weapons labs in Chihuahua

  9. Lol. Yeah if I had top secret information from the Mexican government, in Spanish, I would send it anonymously to Borderland beat too! Lol

  10. Give me a 'W', give me an 'M', give me a 'D'!!! What u get???? C-I-A!!!

  11. Two posts - this one and the previous - highlighting the "slam dunk" evidence about the Islamist infiltration of Mexican cartels. Hope the filling for tamales is not mistaken for yellowcake. Time to deliver some "shock and awe" gringo style just in case?

  12. And surprise he had an alshaabah sticker on his toothpaste box. How convient! The only problem with that is the toothpaste box had mossad fingerprints all over it!

  13. Remember the thwarted attack on Fort Dix, NJ to be perpetrated by a pizza guy? Underwear bombs?

    The unbelievable part to me was the nitric acid and pure glycerine. Only a fool would mess with that!

  14. There has been infiltration, but to the level of attacking a Foreign Diplomat in US soil is pretty far fetch. I am pretty sure Chapo buys Heroin from the Taliban and probably brings some of its fighters to Mexico to help him train his men with guerrilla tactics. But attacking the US seems like a really stupid move, but then again, Zetas are known for stupidity. Ex 1 attacking ICE agents in Mexico. Ex 2, killing 50 people inside a casino. Ex 3, killing hundreds of Immigrants.
    What I am trying to say is that it is probable, but we should take this with a grain of salt. But if there is group stupid enough to do this, it is the Zetas.

  15. Actually Saddam was cooperating with big oil, remember they asked for the US's opinion on the border dispute with Kuwait to which we replied, depending on which transcript you read, "But we have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait." After the fact, they tried to change the transcript twice, but they were already public.

    Saddam also had reason to invade Kuwait, they were angle drilling into Iraq, an often left out fact. So, he played our game, and we f_cked him. This is one reason why America is looked at with legitimate suspicion in the Arab/Persian world. Saddam was no angel and he and his sons were brutal, but in this case, he jumped through what he thought were the right hoops.

    Back to the cartels and their relationship to Islamists. Simply, terrorist and criminal organizations have a long history of working together when they have a common enemy of hatred. It is not clear that the US Gov. is a common enemy of both, as the cartels aren't political in that sense. But, it appears the Zetas are up to the highest bidder and that alone makes the potentially influenced by terrorist organizations with money.

    Stratfor can posit what they want. But when you can move drugs easily into the US, and people for that matter as the cartels do daily, it is just as easy to move the wrong people with particular weapons.

  16. Propaganda to divert attention from Fast & Furious, the housing mess, protests against the banking elites, the upcoming election etc, etc , etc. NO more wars without justification. If the Mexican government could just stop being told what to do by the US, they should immediately legalize at the very least marihuana and tell the US to take care of this problem themselves. I highly recommend the film Prohibition by Ken Burns so that you can see how the government plays the population like a violin . Stop this madness !

  17. REgarding the fake voter ID: of COURSE it's fake. The guy's real name is supposed to be Ahmed.

    As for the unlikelihood that drug cartels would jeopardize business by participating in an Iranian scheme to blow up the Saudi ambassador in Washington DC: absolutely, it's pretty far-fetched. But no one has mentioned something else that is just as far-fetched: that this Iranian guy goes looking for a bomber in Mexico and happens to get a US informant. That's pretty bad luck! What are the odds?

    Commenters who see the CIA hiding behind every bush would say these problems prove the whole story is an invention, but there is another interpretation that is, if anything, more likely. Suppose the bomber contacted by this Iranian went to his cartel bosses. Would they settle for a pittance in cash for helping the Iranian? Or would they offer him to the US in exchange for only God knows what, but I'm sure you can come up with a few possibilities.

  18. If I were a Iranian Jihadist looking to blow up a Saudi diplomat in Washington D.C. and I needed an expert bomb maker (even with living 4 hours from the border of Mexico), I wouldn't automatically think Mexican cartels aficionados to everything bomb related and more. There are still some missing pieces here. And add stupidity into the equation.

  19. The last letter couldn't find a dingle berry on their own ass, even if handed them a microscope, much less coordinate a terrorist attack in D.C.

  20. It wasn't CIA, it was some guy who is probably having a beer and a good laugh in the U.S.

    All I know is that Holder is still going to jail and he may rat out Obama. Hippies are getting beat with sticks at their protests. Life is good. I'll be back in the U.S in a couple of weeks.

    Saludos desde la perla tapatia.

  21. I don't think the cartels will work with terrorist organizations such as al-Shaabab, Mexico's national security is infiltrated by U.S intelligence agencies working together and sometimes on their own without asking Mexico for permission like the "Fast and the Furious" operation. Also, the U.S is known to make up or produce excuses to invade or police a nation to plunder their resources. I don't know which is worse, terrorist organizations or the U.S government/foreign policy.

  22. Cop O Soups are expensive, Los Zetas would pimp their own mothers for a dollar!

  23. 455
    Of course the U.S. government is worse than Al Qaeda. First of all Al Quaeda was created by the U.S. government, second, the U.S. has killed more innocent civilians than any supposed terrorist organization. Dresden, Vietnam, Korea, Panama, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan....we're talking about millions of innocent people and freedom fighters.

  24. Seems like a good possibility for the cartels to make friends in other countries. Honestly I could see it happening, too much to gain with friendship to terrorist organizations. Not saying it is happening but it could if the cartels keep getting hammered hard. Corner a wild animal long enough and it will get dangerous fast.

  25. Are those out of work NBA players?!! Ha,Ha,Ha.

  26. @1:36 AM...I am with you brother. CIA and military are fearful for their jobs due to the economy and cutbacks so here comes the smoke and mirrors. George Bush fell for it. Obama hasn't so they are appealing to the public with propaganda. We are 15 or 20 trillion in debt. Another war would put us 50 trillion in debt and change the economic world as we know it. If there is a problem, they need to end it with a few teflon bullets, not a 30 trillion dollar war. CIA, do your job correctly, behind the scenes.

    OMG, gold would go to $15,000 an ounce, gas to $30 a gallon, the economy would slow so bad, 50% of us would be unemployed, and all we would produce in the US would be weapons. I don't think the US public will fall for this one. I don't think Obama will either. Think God George isn't still in office. He would do it again against United Nations advice, against congress and senate approval and ask us to have "resolve" while he, his vice president and all their oil baron chroneys become trillionaires.

  27. Interesting content, but the comments here are the worst. Leftist paranoiacs, brain-dead drunks, half-literate schizophrenics -- who else could generate such consistent nonsense? Oh, but of course: the CIA. I take it all back.

  28. Follow the money. The way this story is told, cartels set up a pansy, get and keep money for a job they know will not happen, make and extort money from U.S. for "assisting" and also increase their stature and bargaining power with all involved.

  29. here is the only photo that the us goverment has about the terrorist
    ahmed, and guess who was the one that gave to them? me , ofcourse, now
    ask your friends if i am a lier
    ---------- Forwarded message ----------
    Date: Wed, 2 Jun 2010 12:42:16 -0500
    Subject: Africano, el TIO y su gente
    To: NCAR23

    A esta persona supuestamente la habian levantado los de omega, pero se
    equivocaron y levantaron a otra persona, el nació en Somalia, su
    nombre es Ahmed, tiene más de un año en el df y está relacionado con
    movimientos de dinero de la organización extremista islámica Al
    Shabaab, la credencial del ife es falsa. Lo andan ubicando, que compró
    mucho acido nitrico supúestamente, que habla español e inglés y que se
    mueve rápido por todo el país. Que se ospeda en hoteles baratos y que
    renta departamentos humildes, que es fanatico del islam y que algo
    anda preparando.

    Por otro lado aquí están los teléfonos que me pediste del TIO, tío de
    Mario y preveedor y lavador de coca lavada para los jefes del cartel
    del chapo, la lavan en el df y también la distribuyen aqui, mueven
    bastantes kilos.

    Alias CHANOC 044 55 17 90 33 85 , gente del Tio

    Alias EL PROFE 044 55 27 32 02 85, gente del Tio

    Alias El TIO 044 55 20 90 77 21 (hermano de la Guajolota e hijo de Don Lalo)
    Tiene un rancho en las costas de Oaxaca por donde
    desembarcan con lanchas cocaína.
    Si los revientas obtendrás un chingo de info, además
    de droga y dinero, operan en la colonia Condesa y en un edificio en la
    lateral del periferico por barranca del muerto.

    También hay un cabrón muy muy pesado que es el gordito que es la
    imagen de los anuncios comerciales de larga distancia de telmex, un
    gordito de bigote que ahora ya está en las casetas de teléfonos de
    telmex en las calles, el que dice HABLELE, es es punto importante para
    políticos y artistas que consumen perico, si te interesa por lo de los
    políticos pericos te consigo sus datos.

    Sigo esperando.


  30. Este es el comunicado que la Marina de México acaba de emitir, NEGANDO la autoría del documento OPERACION SALIM, en el que se asegura que un terrorista soomalí entró al país para cometer un atentado con explosivos en contra de la embajada de los Estados Unidos en México.

    ¿Cómo es que Borderlandbeat checa la veracidad de los materiales que publica? ¿Habló Borderlandbeat con autridades de la Marina para checar que el documento era autentico?

    ¿Quien suponen que les filtró o envió el documento?


    Comunicado de Prensa: 333/2011 18 de octubre de 2011


    México, D.F.- En relación con las notas periodísticas que hacen referencia a un supuesto informe confidencial de la Secretaría de Marina-Armada de México, en el que se asienta el hallazgo de material explosivo en la colonia Roma el 9 de junio de 2010, se señala lo siguiente:
    1) La Secretaría de Marina rechaza categóricamente la autoría del supuesto informe en posesión de algunos medios de comunicación. El documento es apócrifo, ya que los impresos con sello de goma, el sello de agua que se aprecia en el documento, así como el formato del mismo no corresponden con los utilizados por esta dependencia del Gobierno Federal.
    2) Al igual que en otros temas de seguridad nacional que han sido filtrados a los medios de comunicación nacionales e internacionales, esta Secretaría no se pronuncia sobre los contenidos de las notas.

    Gobierno Federal

  31. The cartel leaders know they US will let them do anything with drugs so long as they are feeding them little bits of info on Islamic terrorist. The CIA has taken sides in the cartel wars.

  32. con respecto a amhed.. tengo entendido que hay una persona de nombre jorge ivan carreño, que vive en el desierto de los leones km 31.5 dentro del parque nacional; que es el que apoya a este tipo de personas.
    Es experto en explosivos, fue entrenado en israel y mantiene una empresa de seguridad con K9 como pantalla para mantener un fuerte grupo de personas armadas. Mantiene lazos con el cartel de la droga de los beltran leyva.
    se asegura que esta involucrado en la fuga del colombiano Harold Mauricio Poveda Ortega, alias el conejo; en el operativo que hubo en el desierto de los leones. la proximidad de las propiedades eran tan cercanas que pudo auxiliarlo para evadir su captura.
    Tambien se le conoce como "RAMBO" debido a que siempre anda armado y suele intimidar a sus vecinos con balazos. Ademas esta involucrado en robo de propiedades y terrenos, secuestros, venta de droga, elaboracion de drogas sinteticas, impor/expor de cocaina con los carteles colombianos, venta de armas y elaboracion de explosivos para el cartel del los beltran leyva.
    Carreño es una pieza importante para los grupos terroristas ya que es el lazo que facilita el acceso a armas, explosivos, documentos falsos, inmuebles, todo lo que necesiten para operar en el pais.
    Tambien esta involucrado con el grupo israelita MOSSAD. se le ha visto entrando al edificio OMEGA en la cd de mexico a las oficinas del mismo grupo.


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