The Minutemen and illegal immigrants in Arizona at France2 news
Last evening’s France2 news had a report, Arizona: Desert of Death (17 minutes into the broadcast. See for yourself). The report started by mentioning that over 100,000 people cross the border in the area beween Nogales and Douglas, Arizona, and that over 100,000 are arrested and returned, while the camera showed a few men being loaded into a Border Patrol van. The reporter interviewed two older women, and showed them, along with men, in campers, trucks, and SUVs watching the borders. There was a close-up of one gun in a holster, “even when they claim they are non-violent”.
Jim Gilchrist of the Minuteman Project stated that their job is to notify the (American) Border Patrol, and that the Patrol are the ones apprehending and returning the illegals. Mr Gilchrist pointed out in a map that, now that the Minutemen are watching that area, the illegals are trying to cross from areas west of the location being watched.
Then the interesting (for me) part: Officer Hilario Olmos in charge of Grupo Beta in Mexico, was interviewed as a counterpart to the Minutemen. Officer Olmos who also patrols the border, only on the Mexican side, wears an orange shirt with the words “Protección a Imigrantes” (Protection to Immigrants) emblazoned on its back. His job is basically to make sure that the people who are waiting to cross realize it won’t take them three hours to cross the desert, but three days, and that they carry water and are prepared for a trip that long. He also checks on those who are ill or injured, who were sheltered in a shed. The coyotes openly (but not in the presence of Officer Olmos) loaded vans in the area, undeterred. The France2 reporter stated that the coyotes charge $3,000 per person — while the camera showed a fully-loaded van just taking off with at least a dozen men that would be transported to the border.
The report went on to contrast that with the Border Patrol office, with TV monitors.
At the end of the report American Border Patrol officer Jose Maheda stated that this is a violent border, and he felt the Minutemen were taking great risks to make a political point.
On a separate subject, but still on the same newscast, the pro-EU Constitution campaign’s casting an ever-widening net. The same France2 broadcast reported from Martinique — looks like they’re working their way north from French Guiana. This morning Drudge links to French in disarray as they admit EU treaty vote is lost