The state of Tamaulipas in Mexico has become disturbingly more dangerous over the past few months, especially for Americans deciding to visit the region that lies just south of the Texas border.
This past Saturday, an American family who was coming back to the United States from Mexico was ambushed by armed cartel members, leaving a 13-year-old U.S. citizen inside the family vehicle dead.
According to the U.S. State Department, four others were wounded by the gunmen, with two of the wounded also being American citizens.
Officials within the State Department are currently monitoring the investigation regarding the attack, according to officials. At this point there’s been no mention of possible motives or the identification of the victims in the case.
Deeply saddened to learn another American child was killed by drug cartels just south of the U.S.-Mexico border. We are praying for her family.
— Bill Hagerty (@BillHagertyTN) January 7, 2020
What was detailed was that the family was traveling in two separate vehicles when attacked. While they were headed down a highway that runs parallel to the U.S.- Mexico border in the township of Ciudad Mier, they were ambushed by an SUV filled with gunmen.
Apparently, the SUV had passed the two vehicles on the highway and then swiftly cut them off, causing them to collide and come to a halt. Thereafter, from what the state of Tamaulipas security coordinating group has revealed, armed individuals exited the SUV and opened fire on the family inside the car.
The senseless act left a young child dead, and a 10-year old wounded as well. Only one of the vehicles were targeted by the gunmen, but both the family cars were toting Oklahoma plates. Reports stated that the gunmen then escaped in another vehicle after the shooting.
Aside from the single fatality from the ordeal, all others that were wounded have been said to be in stable condition.
It’s unclear why the family was venturing down such a notorious stretch of road in Mexico, especially in the dark. That highway where the shooting occurred runs through an area that’s in the middle of a cartel power struggle between the Gulf Cartel and Zetas. What is known is that the family was on their way back to the U.S. after spending the holidays in the central Mexico state of San Luis Potosi.
According to El Diario, the attackers were drug traffickers with the Cártel del Noreste, which serves as an offshoot of the Zetas.
Photos that emerged from the crime scene depicted a calling card by the gunmen on one of the vehicles, having drawn out a “CDN” on the back of the car window. This incident was mere weeks after the State Department had urged U.S. citizens to completely steer clear of Tamaulipas state due to various crime and kidnapping.
The mentioned Mexico Travel Advisory warning was issued on December 17 last year, and the heightened risk associated with the entire country likely stemmed from what happened in November of 2019.
A month prior to the issued warning by the State Department, an ambush in northern Mexico left nine American women and children dead. Officials are making progress on the massacre that happened, as they’ve currently detained seven suspects believed to be linked with the attack. While that particular attack didn’t happen in the state of Tamaulipas, it reinforced the dangers of being American in Mexico.
Still, Tamaulipas has been a hot spot for drug and cartel on-goings lately, while also playing host to several massacres that often accompany cartel activities.
Mexico’s drug war has left 28,689 people dead in 2017 alone, according to government statistics. That’s all that was officially recorded though, as CBS reported that there’s also 36,000 more people in the country who have simply disappeared. Whether those missing people were abducted or slain in the heat of cartel gun battles is simply unknown.
The dangerous climate and multiple murders of Americans south of the border serves as a grim reminder to all prospective vacationers that Mexico isn’t safe if you’re American. Mexico isn’t safe even if you’re Mexican, but being a U.S. citizen makes you a target. It would be wise to take note of the State Department’s warning and avoid entering the country at all costs.
The cartel has made headlines quite frequently — and have even been tied to the situation with Iran.
While there was nary a peep when former President Obama launched drone strike after drone strike in the Middle East, all of a sudden they have a problem with President Trump taking out the head of Iran’s Quds Force, Gen. Qasem Soleimani.
That’s the same guy who was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American troops in the region.
It is a sad commentary when Democrats’ hatred for Trump comes before the best interests of the United States. More on that in a minute.
Let’s take the time machine back to 2011. In that year, secret talks were held in Mexico between a member of a Mexican drug cartel, Los Zetas, and an operative of the Quds Force, Manssor Arbabsiar.
The purpose of the meeting was to discuss planning a detonation of C-4 explosives at a restaurant in Washington, D.C. which was a popular choice of Saudi Ambassador to the United States, Adel-al-Jubeir. The meeting was actually part of a DEA operation, which was being recorded.
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Several further meetings were held over the next few months in Mexico to discuss planned strikes against the Israeli Embassy in Washington, in addition to the Saudi and Israeli embassies in Argentina. They also discussed new trafficking lanes for the movement of opium between the Middle East and Mexico.
In July of that year, Arbabsiar returned to Mexico and continued meeting with the DEA informant. He reiterated that his leaders in Iran had plans for additional violence in addition to the Saudi ambassador’s assassination.
The informant informed the DEA that Arbabsiar had recruited four men to carry out the plot and would charge $1.5 million. Nearly $50,000 in advance payments were wired to an FBI-controlled bank account, which validated the conspiracy.
In October 2011, Arbabsiar and an Iran-based member of Quds Force, Gholam Shakuri, were arrested by federal agents, according to a report in the New York Times.
Both men were charged with conspiracy to murder a foreign official, use weapons of mass destruction and conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism, among several other charges. Arbabsiar confessed to the charges and cooperated with federal authorities.
The foiled terrorist plot was deemed at that time to be a success for the DEA, FBI and Mexican authorities, while some noted that the United States had been lucky that the person recruited by agents of Quds Force under the direction of Soleimani had been a federal informant.
What the operation did confirm is that state sponsors of terror such as Quds Force had a propensity to work with non-state actors in Mexico such as drug cartels to carry out their dirty work.
So, as we have confirmed, Soleimani was a bad dude, having not only been responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American troops, but who had also plotted to carry out the assassination of the Saudi ambassador on American soil, as well as bombing the Israeli Embassy in Washington and the Saudi and Israeli Embassies in Argentina.
At the time, Attorney General Eric Holder announced the murder plot at a news conference in Washington, D.C. and said it was “directed and approved by elements of the Iranian government and, specifically, senior members of the Quds Force.”
He added that “high up officials in those agencies, which is an integral part of the Iranian government, were responsible for this plot.” Thank you, Mr. Holder. Holder of course was the attorney general under Barack Obama.
So as far back as 2011, the American government, including the president at that time, Obama, was aware of Soleimani’s involvement in terrorist activities.
Back to present time. After the strike in Iraq which killed Soleimani, the Democrats acted like Trump had taken out Gandhi.
Sleepy Joe Biden woke up from his typical stupor to tweet the following:
“No American will mourn Qassem Soleimani’s passing. He deserved to be brought to justice for his crimes against American troops and thousands of innocents across the region. He supported terror and sowed chaos. None of that negates the fact that this is a hugely escalatory move in an already dangerous region,” Biden said.
My statement on the killing of Qassem Soleimani. pic.twitter.com/4Q9tlLAYFB
— Joe Biden (Text Join to 30330) (@JoeBiden) January 3, 2020
Bernie Sanders said in a tweet:
“Trump’s dangerous escalation brings us closer to another disastrous war in the Middle East that could cost countless lives and trillions more dollars. Trump promised to end endless wars, but this action puts us on the path to another one,” he said.
Trump's dangerous escalation brings us closer to another disastrous war in the Middle East that could cost countless lives and trillions more dollars.
Trump promised to end endless wars, but this action puts us on the path to another one.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) January 3, 2020
Senator Elizabeth Warren left the teepee to issue the following tweet:
“Soleimani was a murderer, responsible for the deaths of thousands, including hundreds of Americans.
But this reckless move escalates the situation with Iran and increases the likelihood of more deaths and new Middle East conflict. Our priority must be to avoid another costly war.”
Pete Buttigieg, who was mayor of a small town somewhere, had his press secretary issue the following statement, which said in part:
“As a former military intelligence officer on the ground in Afghanistan, I was trained to ask the hard questions before acting. A commander-in-chief must do the same.
Before engaging in military action that could destabilize an entire region, we must take a strategic, deliberate approach that includes consultation with Congress, our allies, and stakeholders in the Middle East,” he said.
We could go on, but you get the point. The contrast between the killing of Soleimani and that of Osama bin Laden and how the “opposition” parties treated the two is striking.
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