No, Texas has not been invaded

Posted by: Phineas on July 24, 2010 at 6:40 pm

An Internet rumor has been spreading for hours now claiming that Los Zetas, a notorious and extremely violent Mexican drug gang, has crossed the border and taken over two ranches near Laredo. The source seems to be a blog called Diggers Realm. See also this breathless account at examiner.com:

In what could be deemed an act of war against the sovereign borders of the United States, Mexican drug cartels have seized control of at least two American ranches inside the U.S. territory near Laredo, Texas.

Two sources inside the Laredo Police Department confirmed the incident is unfolding and they would continue to coordinate with U.S. Border Patrol today. “We consider this an act of war,” said one police officer on the ground near the scene. There is a news blackout of this incident at this time and the sources inside Laredo PD spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Word broke late last night that Laredo police have requested help from the federal government regarding the incursion by the Los Zetas. It appears that the ranch owners have escaped without incident but their ranches remain in the hands of the blood thirsty cartels.

Laredo Border Patrol is conducting aerial surveillance over the ranches to determine the best way to regain control of the U.S. ranches, according to the Laredo Police department.

One problem: It’s not true. Bob Owens of Confederate Yankee took the unusual and daring step of actually calling the Laredo PD and the local sheriff’s office to get the true story. Here’s a part of what he learned:

[Laredo PD Sgt. Perez] also provided me the number of the Sheriff’s Department. The deputy that answered the phone there was less bemused, having also dealt with this rumor multiple times in a short amount of time. She also told me that there was no invasion and no law enforcement siege, and that deputies were continuing normal operations.

So where and how Digger and Examiner.com’s Kimberly Dvorak got their “confirmations, ” I have no idea. But a simple phone call to the relevant authorities showed this was just another Internet myth.

What I do know, however, is that the situation on our border is serious and the dangers faced there are real. Those of us concerned about border security -and on the Right in general- face a hostile mainstream media and political elite looking for anything they can use to dismiss us and smear us as racists and extremists in need of being controlled.

Let’s not give them any ammunition, okay?

UPDATE: The Laredo Morning Times hasn’t heard of any trouble, either. You’d think the local paper would know, wouldn’t you?

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

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16 Responses to “No, Texas has not been invaded”

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  1. Rorschach says:

    Actually we HAVE been invaded down here, just not the way the rumor says….

  2. This looked somewhat suspicious when I first saw it… thanks for clearing it up. Of course, this will be our conservative “area 51″ – those embarassed by reporting this too early will hold to some conspiracy fantasy of a media coverup, and conservative new media will be mocked by the leftist media…

  3. PE says:

    If it were true, Obama would have called on both sides to stand down.

  4. Steve Hussein Skubinna says:

    A little consideration would have revealed that this story was extremely unlikely. Invade Texas? Had it actually happened, I expect the cartel members would have found themselves barricaded in the strongest buildings frantically screaming for help from the Border Patrol or anyone else.

  5. Carlos says:

    We’ve already come close to blasting off one foot this week, we don’t need some hair-brain to blast off the other one, too.

    This is the kind of thing that independents will look at in November and shake their heads and consider that maybe socialism is the lesser of two evils. Just what we need.

    Unless Digger and Examiner.com are libs undermining conservatives? I have no idea, but it fits the libs’ pattern.

  6. willya says:

    “actually calling the Laredo PD and the local sheriff’s office to get the true story.”

    “You’d think the local paper would know”

    heh. Yeah. Because the police and government never lie. And the media never cover it up.

  7. Pasadena Phil says:

    ST

    The story was reported by AP (for a while) and the an important aspect is that it is being confirmed by anonymous Laredo police who are not happy about media blackout. An official denial by Laredo police who may be under a gag order would not prove that it is a hoax.

    Digger cites anonymous police and Border Patrol sources for this report. Michelle Malkin seems to be standing by the reliability so it may be premature to declare this to be a hoax.

  8. Phineas says:

    Phil:

    Actually, I wrote the story. :)

    First, check out the Confederate Yankee link I gave, and look for Digger’s comment at 08:06. He and Dvorak relied on information from each other. That makes the Examiner article useless as a confirming source.

    Second, anonymous sources are worthless on this, unless one wants to go into conspiracy mode. CY gave names of his sources denying anything was happening, making them checkable. None of Digger or Dvorak’s law enforcement sources are named and checkable.

    Finally, ask yourself this: If a major standoff (literally a “Mexican standoff”) were underway, wouldn’t every news agency in Texas have a video truck on the way? It’s just not believable.

    And neither is the Digger-Dvorak story as it’s been presented.

    PS. As for Michelle Malkin, I like her reporting a lot, but, in this case, she’s just citing Digger and Dvorak. No confirmation there.

    PPS. BTW, I’m not suggesting the story is a hoax, per se, but an example of very sloppy reporting mixed with the Internet “sky is falling” effect.

  9. burr says:

    I have a hard time thinking that this is a story that could be covered up. Local news sources like to cover local news of this sort, and KGNS-TV is just down the road from the alleged ranches.

    “We consider this an act of war,” said one police officer on the ground near the scene.

    Acts of war aren’t usually something police officers concern themselves with. *shrug* Whatever.

  10. We will know the truth shortly, perhaps.

    I will only say that I also talked to the Laredo PD and they did not deny anything. In fact, it was interesting that when the spokesperson for Chief Carlos Maldonado was asked if the Webb County Sheriff’s Dept. was “taking the lead on this case,” he answered, “Yes. And, they can’t confirm anything either.”

    I didn’t ask him why anyone would be taking the lead on a rumor. (Also, the location in question is outside the Laredo PD’s jurisdiction.)

    I also talked to the Laredo Times reporter on the story.

    He also did not deny the story. The Laredo PD did not deny the story in his piece. The words they are using is “can’t confirm” and “can’t say anything.”

    There are others checking it out now. It’s seems to me that it’s just as wrong to report that this is a “rumor” without any proof as it is to say that it’s happening without any proof. Why not just report on what is known?

    It might be a rumor. But those who are reporting it so surely have no proof that it is. The reporter for the Examiner, Kimberly Dvorak, does good work for Big Government on ACORN and says she “adamantly stands by her story.”

    She also says that she has 3 sources, law enforcement; two who described to her last night in “great detail what was happening.” She also said that she had 2 non-law enforcement sources “close to the scene” who are also confirming what she was told by law enforcement.

    Pat Dollard took his story down, talked to Dvorak on the phone and reposted it after he was done. Dvorak gave him the name of one her law enforcement sources.

    Maybe she’s just making it all up. I can’t make that call as easily as others.

    Some New Media, same as the Old Media.

  11. burr says:

    The Tucson Citizen’s web site had this update on their story:

    “July 24 2211 MT Hector Garcia , a city council member of the City of Laredo TX, has returned my phone call and aboslutely denied that any armed conflict has occured with the Laredo PD. He is quoting the Chief of Police, Carlos Maldonado. Mr Garcia went on to say that it appears two ranchers had a disagreement.”

    At least the author is phoning people with actual names.

  12. Dana says:

    Let’s see, it’s just a couple of hours from Fort Hood, home of the 1st Air Cavalry Division, to Laredo. I’m thinking that Texas isn’t a real good place to start an invasion.

  13. Zippy says:

    I seriously doubt something of this magnitude could be covered up. I’m sure there’s alotta Texans with guns out there who would love a chance to target shoot.

  14. Jo says:

    PE, Obama might just have a beer summit. That solves alot as we’ve seen. Beer summit and POOF! no more racial tension in this country. The man is pure magic.

  15. Bill Fabrizio says:

    To Dana #12;

    If only it were so Dana! Obama is saving the 1st Air Cavalry to use against non-compliant US citizens. Foreign invaders are a protected class under his administration and trying to turn them back from crossing illegally into the US will be prosecuted by the DOJ as a hate crime!