Janet Napolitano in Afghanistan helping with their border smuggling problem

Posted on January 5, 2011

Just reading the headline makes me shake my head in disbelief.

Our Secretary of the Department of HOMELAND Security, Janet Napolitano,  made a trip to Afghanistan and met with President Karzai in an effort to help them deal with THEIR border smuggling problem. 

 Janet Napolitano, the United States homeland security secretary, said Saturday that her department planned to triple the number of agents in Afghanistan to train border and customs workers — an effort that is partly aimed at curbing the smuggling of cash out of the country.

The department is sending 52 former agents, who will work on contract, to reinforce the 25 agents currently in Afghanistan.

Ms. Napolitano was visiting the country for two days to inspect border crossings and meet with government leaders, including President Hamid Karzai.

The United States Embassy estimates that $10 million a day leaves Afghanistan by plane bound for Dubai, United Arab Emirates — some of it the proceeds from illegal activities.

Hmm.  What’s wrong with this picture?

First, why is the Secretary of the Department of HOMELAND Security visiting Afghanistan and helping to secure their borders?  Aren’t the borders she is supposed to be worrying about the ones that are barely standing between the U.S. and Mexico and Canada? 

Second, and more to the point, is Janet Napolitano really the person the Afghanis should be talking with about how to secure a border?  Even though the current administration keeps repeating the meme that the borders here are more secure than they’ve ever been, the actual effectiveness of our own border security efforts are up for debate.  Just today it was reported that the 50th (yes that’s a 5 and a 0) drug smuggling tunnel over the last 4 years was found in Nogales, which straddles the southern border and is divided between Nogales, Sonora in Mexico and Nogales, Arizona. Those 50 tunnels are just what have been discovered in Nogales, they are not combined total number of tunnels for the entire southwest border.  26 of those tunnels have been found in the last 2 years on Secretary Napolitano’s watch.  That certainly doesn’t sound like “our borders are more secure than ever before.”

Additionally, if our border is so secure, why is it that Sheriff Paul Babeu of Pinal County in Arizona was on a local morning television show today reporting that his department’s statistics show an almost doubling of marijuana seized, pursuits and border patrol calls since 2008?  Sheriff Babeu reports that although 240,000 illegal immigrants were apprehended last year, even the federal government admits that 4000,000 weren’t and that about 20% of all illegals they are apprehending presently have some type of criminal records OUTSIDE of border violations.

With those types of statistics, maybe President Karzai should skip any future meetings with Secretary Napolitano and meet with someone else instead.

Posted in: Afghanistan, Politics