Border Security

Maps Show 330 Illegal Alien Crossing Ariz. Border in One Night in March, Including Ultralight Incursion

During the night of March 23, 2012, illegal activity was shockingly high along 12-mile stretch of border in the Tohono O’odham Indian Reservation in Arizona and extending into the United States – 330 illegal aliens in one night. Over the course of a year, it can add up to 120,450 illegal entries just along these 12 miles of the Border Patrol’s Tucson Sector. The destruction and illegal use of federal taxpayer lands and the great chance of success that the drug cartels and alien smugglers have tell a story of a border where illegal activity is high and the border remains out of control.

Time to Measure Progress at the Border With Mexico

After two decades of pouring resources and technology into patrolling the U.S. border with Mexico, there are encouraging signs that Congress is about to start asking the right question: what exactly have we bought for all that money? But the administration is continuing to drag its heels. A May 8 hearing of the House Homeland Security subcommittee on border and maritime security was intended to provide some answers to the critical question of how to assess progress along the border.

LA Times Article Says IG Questions Effectiveness of Predators by CBP

Sunday’s LA Times contains a story that every Member of Congress and homeland security stakeholder ought to read. For the first time that I can remember, AMO Chief Michael Kostelnik, CBP’s main evangelist for acquiring Predator UAVs for border enforcement, admits that the results have NOT been impressive, especially in helping capture illegal drug runners.

U.S. military concerned about drug trade opening routes for terror groups

CQ Homeland Security The top U.S. military officer overseeing South and Central America said Wednesday that his forces interdict only about 25 percent of all the observed illicit drug shipments transiting from his region to the United States, routes the military has reason to believe Iran might someday seek to exploit. Air Force Gen. Douglas […]

The National Northern Border Counternarcotics Strategy: Closing a Window of Criminal Opportunity

Last week, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy issued the National Northern Border Counternarcotics Strategy. Unless you knew it was coming and happened to be keeping an eye peeled for it, the document may well have escaped notice—with its release on a Friday, in the heat of primary season, and in the immediate lead-up to the President’s State of the Union Address. This is something of a shame because the plan contains some welcome elements that, if well executed, could make a positive contribution to the field.

CBP's Bersin hopes legacy is one of balancing security without hindering trade

CQ Homeland Security When former Customs and Border Protection chief Alan Bersin took office in March 2010, he said he wanted to transform the agency and make it a promoter of commerce instead of a hindrance. His departure late last year has shipping groups hoping the agency’s next head feels the same way.

Security Debrief Bloggers on Homeland Challenges in 2012

CQ Homeland Security conducted its annual survey of security challenges last year and the road ahead in 2012. The three-part series included comments from security experts throughout government and the private sector, many of whom are contributors to Security Debrief. Below is a rundown of some of their responses. Check out each of the story links to read more about important security efforts in 2012.

US-VISIT Advances in Biometrics Tighten Border Security

US-VISIT gave its 8th annual briefing on Thursday, and the progress there continues to be impressive. While the advances in biometrics raise some delicate privacy questions, the United States is getting ever closer to creating a system in which it will be more or less impossible to lie one’s way into this country through the legal ports of entry. And more and more countries – sixty-one at last count – are going down the same road of using biometrics for border control.

C-TPAT and Transnational Criminal Cartels

Recently, it was reported that members of Mexican Crime Cartels illegally entered five different truck yards in northern Mexico by threatening security officers. These criminals did not steal cash or cargo. Instead, they compromised sensitive corporate information – routing information for U.S.-bound commercial truck shipments. Criminal organizations the world over, especially along the land border of Mexico and the United States, use commercial trucks to move contraband. Because of the huge amount of trade that crosses our borders and the limited number of personnel to inspect and process this trade, two methods were created to ease the cargo delays and help the CBP inspectors target suspect trucks.

Customs and Border Commissioner Alan Bersin Resigns

By Nelson Balido
Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Alan Bersin last Thursday announced his resignation effective December 30. For folks who monitor border trade and security issues, this wasn’t exactly a surprise. But it was still a disappointment. Nevertheless, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano made the right choice in naming deputy commissioner David Aguilar as the new acting commissioner.