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Why the silence from Janet Napolitano about putting troops on the border?

Eight days ago, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced “significant progress” in securing the border in the year since President Barack Obama launched his Southwest Border Initiative. Words like “decisive action”, “sustained security efforts” and “major progress” were employed.

One day later, Rob Krentz was dead, shot to death just 20 miles from the border on land his family has ranched since before Arizona became a state. Investigators tracked a set of footprints from the scene of the shooting to the border and it's widely believed that he was killed by a drug smuggler.

Krentz's death prompted Republican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer to renew her 13-month-old call for the feds to send National Guard troops to the border, a call echoed by Republican Sen. John McCain and Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Democratic New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson flat out ordered the New Mexico National Guard to the border on Wednesday, saying “I want residents in southern New Mexico to know we are taking this border violence very seriously.”

Meanwhile in Washington, we saw the sort of bold, decisive action we've long come to expect from the feds when it comes to the border. Napolitano offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Krentz's killer.

This, from a woman who two years ago pleaded with her predecessor for troops at the border.

Napolitano's press aides didn't return a call to explain this week's curious lack of response from the official now responsible for the security of the homeland – presumably including the open back door here in her own home state.

Who knows? Maybe she's just taking orders from her boss, Barack Obama. Or maybe she's forgotten who she is – or was.

In 2003, then-Gov. Napolitano opposed Republican state legislators who wanted to put National Guard troops on the border, arguing – correctly – that border security was the job of the federal government. Three years later, she announced that she would send troops to the border as long as the feds paid for it. Later that year, they did.

Six thousand troops were deployed as part of Operation Jump Start, 2,400 of them in Arizona. I didn't think much of it at the time given that guardsmen weren't allowed to, you know, actually guard the border. But the program was a rousing success as guardsmen assisted in catching 176,000 illegal crossers and helped seize more than 300,000 pounds of incoming marijuana and 5,000 pounds of cocaine.

So naturally, George Bush sent the troops home.

As the program was winding down in the spring of 2008, Napolitano made a plea to then-Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff to leave troops at the border until the “virtual” fence became operational in 2011 (or as it now turns out, never).

“The federal government has no excuse to scale back the program,” Napolitano wrote to Chertoff in March 2008. “Common sense dictates that the drawdown should stop and that a continued high National Guard presence should be maintained.”

In April 2008, she warned congressional leaders that halting the operation in July would be “irresponsible.”

Nine months later, Napolitano took over for Chertoff. Last April, on her first trip back to Arizona, Napolitano was asked about requests from Brewer and Texas Gov. Rick Perry to return the Guard to the border.

“The president ... really has asked questions particularly of the governor of Texas, who was the first one to request it, saying, 'Where would they go, what missions would they perform?,' " Napolitano replied.

“When we did Jump Start here, it was to help us build the fence along this portion of the border. The National Guard issue, without being state-specific, is under consideration.”

Under consideration. That was 12 months and one dead rancher ago.

One wonders what it'll take to reach a conclusion.

4 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The silence is because to put the blame where it belongs would be seen as partisan politics, when in fact, it's Jan Brewer's failing her state.

    Now, if you are talking about when Napolitano was governor, that's a separate matter. But it's Jan Brewer's issue now.

    That Richardson gave marching orders to the New Mexico National Guard shows that the problem is in Phoenix...not Washington.

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  • 4 years ago

    Gov Napolianto is rather professional unlawful !!! Her appointment to Director of place of delivery protection by making use of Obama is fullyyt a bone being tossed to each and all the Hiuspanic communities available ! Democrats prefer and prefer complete vote casting blocks it why they turn a blind eye to illegals interior the 1st place it has not something to do with assisting somebody it has each and everything to fo with Democratic Politicians assisting themselves.

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  • ?
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    She should be held personally for this death since she lied over and over again about the border being secure.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Short and sweet . She's an idiot !!!

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