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

Friday, May 6, 2022

Former US Defense Secretary Claims Trump Asked About Launching Missiles to Destroy Cartel Drug Labs

“Socalj” for Borderland Beat

Former Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, left, reveals Trump's proposal to deal with drug cartels among other discussions in his new memoir.

President Donald J. Trump in 2020 asked Mark T. Esper, his defense secretary, about the possibility of launching missiles into Mexico to “destroy the drug labs” and wipe out the cartels, maintaining that the United States’ involvement in a strike against its southern neighbor could be kept secret, Mr. Esper recounts in his upcoming memoir.

One such idea emerged from Mr. Trump, who was unhappy about the constant flow of drugs across the southern border, during the summer of 2020. Mr. Trump asked Mr. Esper at least twice if the military could “shoot missiles into Mexico to destroy the drug labs.”

“They don’t have control of their own country,” Mr. Esper recounts Mr. Trump saying. When Mr. Esper raised various objections, Mr. Trump said that “we could just shoot some Patriot missiles and take out the labs, quietly,” adding that “no one would know it was us.” Mr. Trump said he would just say that the United States had not conducted the strike, Mr. Esper recounts, writing that he would have thought it was a joke had he not been staring Mr. Trump in the face.

In the fall of 2019, a push was made within the United States government to designate Mexican-based cartels not only as Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTO) but as Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTO) as reported by Borderland Beat. Based on the mere definitions many drug cartels have committed acts akin to terrorist activity, with the main difference being the end goal of many of the terrorist-like activities committed by cartels is for monetary gain. 

In defense of the sovereignty of the nation, Mexico fought back against the designation, “Mexico would never accept,” Mexico's Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard said. While the U.S. and Mexico have a history of cooperation in combating the cartels, principally through sharing intelligence, Mexico’s concern would be that U.S. forces would potentially move against targets independently, violating Mexico’s sovereignty.

Mexico’s Senate president, Ricardo Monreal, a member of the president’s party, said via Twitter on Tuesday night that the designation would allow the U.S. government “to use legal and institutional means that would permit it to act unilaterally in our territory with the justification of pursuing those groups.”

Currently, no Mexican DTOs are on the terrorist list. Colombian FARC Dissident groups were recently added to the terrorist list, they control large portions of the cocaine trade in that country but largely to fund their political objectives and paramilitary operations.

Many of the consequences of the two different designations are similar; from the freezing of assets, and sanctioning of companies/organizations and persons to refusing them entry to the United States. The main difference for the designation of cartels as FTOs could allow the US military to conduct operations in Mexico and attack the cartels as part of the ongoing war on terror. 

The official designation of a group as a Foreign Terrorist Organization triggers more robust means of combat under the Authorization for Use of Military Force act enacted in 2001, which is still in force today allowing military action against those associated with terrorist acts. Had the designation occurred, Trump could have justified military strikes against the cartels under that authorization.

"Terrorist Activity" Defined

As used in this chapter, the term "terrorist activity" means any activity which is unlawful under the laws of the place where it is committed (or which, if it had been committed in the United States, would be unlawful under the laws of the United States or any State) and which involves any of the following:

(I) The highjacking or sabotage of any conveyance (including an aircraft, vessel, or vehicle).

(II) The seizing or detaining, and threatening to kill, injure, or continue to detain, another individual in order to compel a third person (including a governmental organization) to do or abstain from doing any act as an explicit or implicit condition for the release of the individual seized or detained.

(III) A violent attack upon an internationally protected person (as defined in section 1116(b)(4) of title 18) or upon the liberty of such a person.

(IV) An assassination.

(V) The use of any-

(a) biological agent, chemical agent, or nuclear weapon or device, or

(b) explosive, firearm, or other weapon or dangerous device (other than for mere personal monetary gain), with intent to endanger, directly or indirectly, the safety of one or more individuals or to cause substantial damage to property.

(VI) A threat, attempt, or conspiracy to do any of the foregoing.

Sources NY TimesUS GovBorderland BeatGovTrack


  1. Sounds like a fucking good idea to me🤔

    1. So did the capital hill insurgency until they realized there was no plan and they were gonna face serious consequences.

    2. 11:54 THERE WAS A PLAN.
      Attempted coup member Roger Stone DID it before when he got Florida to stop the vote count that stole the Presidency from Al Gore further asserted by an already corrupt SCOTUS...
      This time that shit did not work because Sleepy Joe Biden got help from Obama, Hillary and her broom and Hugo Chavez the venezuelan Bolivarian, they stole more than 7 million votes to cook The Unpresidented Disgrace's Ass.

    3. Sir, you do realize Hugo Chavez has been dead for almost 10years, don't you? I realize you were (hopefully) joking.

    4. 112:23. !!! Oh, yeah?
      Then you need to notify the Stop The Steal, Q-anon, the Oath Keepers, the Proud Boys, The Unpresidented Disgrace, and all the attending court cheeto that Hugo Chabez is dead, because mtg and other Confederate Trumpanzees have been saying Hugo stole the election for Biden with help of Israel death rays...

    5. 1:22 I am a real NAZI, but very inclusive, the kind that aligns with BLM and ANTIFA but does not mess with anybody other than koolaid drinkers of oringe cheeto flavored shit, I also believe on Freedom of Expresion but with responsibility for your crap, lying propagandistas should be fined, heavily

  2. Goes to show how clueless Trump and his supporters are when it comes to international laws and politics.

    1. I am ok I love Obrador and am sure I love Trump too, love chorizo.

    2. Hi Pancho. LoL. Coming out of your Rock?

    3. 7:30 what gave away the Panocho?

  3. México should do the same with all wacky ass Racist Republicans

    1. 12:30
      México is on it already...

    2. Yes Pancho Albert 623
      I love Lopez Obrador government and his CHORIZO.

  4. Story from AP about shootings in Cancun

    1. Wake up send it to BB Gmail account gracias.


Comments are moderated, refer to policy for more information.
Envía fotos, vídeos, notas, enlaces o información
Todo 100% Anónimo;