What part of “National Guard” don’t you understand?

Gunmen force border guardsmen to flee post

TUCSON, Ariz. – National Guard troops at an observation post near the Mexico border were forced to flee a group of armed people, who later ran into Mexico, authorities said.

The troops, who are not allowed to apprehend illegal border crossers, withdrew safely and no one was injured, said National Guard Sgt. Edward Balaban.

U.S. Border Patrol officials are investigating the 11 p.m. Wednesday incident and trying to determine who the armed people were and why they approached the post near Sasabe, in the desert corridor between Nogales and Lukeville. Balaban said the troops didn’t know how many people were involved because it was so dark.

The Border Patrol said that heightened security in the sector since the arrival of National Guard troops in June may have forced the illegal border crossers to resort to armed confrontation. As I’ve said before, almost two years ago and repeated last year:

Increases in violence probably indicate that our security is actually improving, forcing the smugglers to resort to more drastic methods.

That doesn’t make it okay, however.

Just as the smugglers and other illegal crossers will be forced to ramp up their operations in the face of additional security, the Border Patrol and National Guard will have to ramp up their operations in response. This will include, at some point, rules of engagement that permit soldiers to fire on threats to their safety. And, it seems, the sooner the better.


  1. Y’Know, I have my issues with using the Guard as glorified boy scouts with binoculars on the border… But goddamnit, these fools deserved to be lit the f#@k up something fierce – come on, these guys are Guard not Blue Helmets!

  2. Speaking of Blue Helmets, aren’t UN Peacekeepers now armed with night sticks, topped of with blue beanies and empowered to yell ‘Hey You!’ at passing armored columns?

  3. Personally I would take most of the Guard off of border duty and replace them with hundreds of thousands of mines.

  4. We’ve been hearing these stories for a long time here in Arizona, but it’s rarely reported. I’ve included an updated post on my blog to use as a clearinghouse for info on the incident. Basically, the AP is the only one on this — the local media is only parroting their lead (so far).

  5. I just briefed my squadron about this today. One of our troops is leaving for Operation Jumpstart within days. Unfortunately, many of the Army Guard troops down there are unarmed, and/or given such restrictive Rules of Engagement, that the troops are very much in danger. Add to that, many are from non-combat or non-MP units, we are sitting on a disaster waiting to happen. Thankfully, Air Guard Security Forces troops go down fully armed, trained and have clear orders to meet Deadly Force with Deadly Force. Maybe I sound a little out of line but, er, um, if these guys are crossing the border and using violence, wouldn’t that be termed an invasion, to be treated with appropriate defensive/offensive actions? That’s why we in the Air Guard cringe whenever we’re ‘chopped’ to Army Guard units. Hell, we have Army troops down there right now with nothing more intimidating than a pair of binoculars, that’s beyond ludicrous, it’s criminally negligent!

  6. Some members of my unit were down there last summer. Since I had already done an AT, I was not selected. At first I was pissed since it was a mission I really believed in. Then, I saw my friends packing to go, without weapons. The border is a disaster. Here’s what happens when anyone tries to stop illegal immigration or smuggling. http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=51417

  7. Hopefully if any Guard units get pinned out there, some right thinking American Citizens will be able to pull thier fat out of the fryer…oh wait, we can’t shoot at the Mexicans cause the ACLU will sue us into the poor house on behalf of anyone from south of the border. Never mind they were committing a felony while being in the country illigally. You even brandish a weapon to one (read: Have one slung over your shoulder and tell the people to stay put and wait for INS to come pick them up) and they can sue you. I hope the US militia members and Minutemen down there are keeping a close eye on things. I hope they don’t have to, but it would be a real wake up call for some ‘civvies’ to rescue the Border Patrol or the National Guard units down there while under fire.