Drudge banner: Predator drones to patrol Tex-Mex border

Here’s the story from the San Antonio Express News. Not only does it get the banner treatment, it gets the all-too-rare exclamation point to boot. In the annals of Drudge-iana, only the red font and the dreaded red-font-with-siren are more esteemed, my friends.

One teensy quibble on my part, though. Isn’t this old news?

An unmanned aerial drone will soon fly over Texas skies as drug-cartel violence continues to escalate on the U.S.-Mexico border, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told a Senate hearing Tuesday.

Texas is the last border state to receive a Predator drone, and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said that has hurt intelligence capabilities to federal, state and local law enforcement on the ground…

Napolitano said Texas was the last Southwest border state to receive a drone because “Texas airspace is more crowded.”…

In Juarez, across the Rio Grande from El Paso, some 700 people have died in shootouts and drug-related violence this year.

So the big news isn’t that drones will now be patrolling the border, it’s that they’ll now be patrolling the Texas border, which … really isn’t big news, especially since Arizona’s had four of these suckers in the air since 2006 and is still having major problems. In fact, the head of the Border Patrol warned back in 2005 that they’d be better off spending millions not on drones but on new agents and/or helicopters, which are far more agile. Henry Cuellar seems sold on them, though, but whether that’s because they’ll put a dent in drug trafficking or because they’re politically useful as security theater to reassure Texans, I leave for you to judge.

And before you ask, no, the drones aren’t armed. Blowing up convoys of bad guys is reserved for Al Qaeda, not drug cartels.

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David Strom 6:01 AM on June 06, 2023