Jaime Zapata – 10 Years On

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the ambush and murder of ICE-HSI Special Agent Jaime Zapata in Mexico. He was killed by narcoterrorists with the drug cartel Los Zetas and his partner Victor Avila was seriously wounded. Some of the weapons used by the narcoterrorists were walked to Mexico as part of the Obama-Biden Administration’s Operation Fast and Furious.

Victor Avila was our guest tonight on the Polite Society Podcast. He spoke about the ambush and the aftermath.

His interview starts at the 10 minute mark and runs to about the 40 minute mark. We had some audio difficulty towards the end due to winter storm-related power issues in the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas.

Last year, the US Office of Special Counsel issued a report that stated Agents Zapata and Avila received insufficient support for their mission in Mexico.

The investigation, conducted by the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility, substantiated that ICE officials failed to provide the agents additional support for their mission from either U.S. personnel or Mexican law enforcement. The agency also failed to properly brief and prepare the agents in advance of the assignment to discuss the cargo, security measures, and any other relevant information. The report confirmed that there was “a known lack of diligence with regard to the maintenance of the ICE armored vehicles.”  For example, it was known prior to the incident that the agents’ armored vehicle did not have properly functioning tracking equipment.

The investigation revealed that, at the time of the attack, management lacked specific policies and procedures for the execution of the agency mission in Mexico. For example, the agency lacked formalized policies with respect to travel; did not provide counter threat training to those stationed in Mexico; and did not provide armored vehicle training to employees in Mexico. Additionally, the Mexico City office suffered from weak operational security, which was evident in the lack of planning and execution for the trip taken by Agent Avila and Agent Zapata.

One thing that stood out in our interview with Victor was that some of the records from the Department of Justice regarding Operation Fast and Furious are still locked up. They were initially kept sealed under the Obama Administration’s claim of executive privilege. Despite President Trump’s pledge to the Terry family to release them, they still have never been released and I’m sure President Biden will make sure they never see the light of day.

Victor has written a book on his efforts to get the truth released among other things. It is called Agent Under Fire: A Murder and a Manfesto. I just ordered my copy tonight.

More On The Unsealed Indictment

ABC News had footage from today’s press conference with US Attorney for the Southern District of California Laura Duffy. She is the lead prosecutor in the murder prosecution of the six Mexican nationals charged with Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. Given the involvement of the US Attorney’s Office for Arizona in Project Gunwalker, outside prosecutors had to be brought in.

While it has been rumored for a long time that the Border Patrol Agents responded with less than lethal ammunition (beanbags), I believe this is the first time the government has confirmed it. To me, this is the equivalent of taking a knife to a gun fight.

David Codrea has a different take on the unsealing of the indictment in his National Gun Rights Examiner column today.

Noting indictments were handed down by a federal grand jury in November, 2011, and the men are still at large, it would seem fair to ask what information Justice has to to be confident they have not automatically condemned the suspects—and that word is key—to violent deaths, whether they are entrenched in Mexico or hiding in the U.S. from ruthless gangs who ignore borders as a matter of course?

If the unsealing somehow forces the suspects in from the cold, the gamble with their lives will have paid off, but that assumes they are still alive and they are guilty. If they are instead caught first by the cartels, the adage “Dead men tell no tales” will certainly fuel further speculation among those who don’t believe the government has been forthcoming about its role in a deadly operation that has already claimed known and untold lives, an unfortunate but logical consequence of earned mistrust.

I think David brings up some very valid questions. I would be surprised if they are ever found, alive or dead.

Where is Black Jack Pershing When We Need Him

Instapundit posted a link to the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College’s website tonight. They had this announcement posted:

UTB/TSC Emergency Warning #5
The campus is closed and evening classes have been canceled today and Saturday, Nov. 6 because of gunfire taking place across the Rio Grande. Anyone who needs to come to campus or has questions about events can call Campus Police at 882-8232 or 882-8233. Homecoming activities for Saturday, Nov. 6 have been affected. Coffee with the President has been canceled. The Golden Scorpions Reunion at noon will be on the patio at Lolas Bistro at 1335 Palm Blvd. in Brownsville. The Distinguished Alumnus Award event has been postponed until further notice. Enrollment Management’s Scorpion Saturday event has also been canceled. The mens and womens soccer semifinals of the Red River Athletic Conference Tournament have been moved to the Brownsville Sports Park. The womens game that UTB/TSC is playing in is at 8 p.m. and the mens game that UTB/TSC will play in is at 10 p.m. today. The womens soccer final will take place at 5 p.m. and the mens soccer final will be at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 6 at the Brownsville Sports Park.

If anyone has ever doubted that we have trouble on our Southern border, this should be a wake-up call. This isn’t some modern-day Pancho Villa with his raid on Columbus, New Mexico. Rather it is a full-fledged narco-terrorist insurgency on our borders with heavy weaponry smuggled into Mexico by international arms merchants and not bought at American gunshows as the White House and the Brady Campaign would have us believe.

Enough is enough. One of these days Tonight We Ride will be more than just a great song by singer-songwriter Tom Russell. It’s time to skin some terrorists and make chaps out of their hides.