The Source of Mexican Drug Lords’ Guns Revealed

U.S. President Barak Obama, Mexican President Philipe Calderon, The Mayors Against Illegal Guns and their gun control allies would have you believe that Mexican drug lords are arming themselves with weapons smuggled across the American border. In a recent post, the Brooking Institute pegged the number of guns crossing the border without proper papers at a highly implausible 730,000 weapons per year. Note: “without proper papers.” It’s entirely credible that the Mexican drug lords are getting their U.S. guns after they enter Mexico legally . . .

In other words, the criminals are commandeering weapons sold/given to the Mexican authorities, many if not most by the United States government. Here’s some evidence supporting this less politically palatable theory, via borderlandbeat.com:

CHIHUAHUA, Chihuahua –Around 02:00 on the morning of Monday, September 27, at least 6 men dressed in CIPOL state police uniforms with tactical gear & riding in a white Dodge Ram entered the State Security Complex (CIPOL compound) & raided the arsenal.

The group entered by the main (south) entrance. They first took control of the radio room. In the process, they disarmed 5 guards & handcuffed their hands & feet (one news source said it was 2 police & 3 security guards).

The commando then entered the arsenal after breaking 2 locks to get through the steel doors. They took 43 H&K G36 assault rifles (.223 caliber), 26 9mm pistols, bulletproof vests & grenades.

They left the way they came with no resistance. Official reports admitted there was insufficient security for the complex.

It was also apparent from how the commando conducted their operation that they knew how to enter the complex, how to access the radio room & where the arsenal was located.

Look for this story to appear in the dictionary under “inside job.” Meanwhile, our gun-savvy readership is sure to recognize the Heckler & Kock G36 as an ill-fated German-made weapon that fires 5.56x45mm NATO ammo. The U.S. Capitol Police and the Baltimore Police Department are the only U.S. agencies that adopted the rifle. Mexico ordered an unspecified number for their law enforcement agencies, but their army passed.

So we can assume that these guns did not come from the U.S. arsenal. As for the 9mms and grenades, who knows? Who cares? The country of manufacture of the “stolen” weapons is not important. What’s notable here: the guns were transferred from official to unofficial hands without a fight.

I’d bet dollars to frijoles that this is the way Mexican drug lords have armed themselves: with [mostly] American-made guns purchased/stolen from various local law enforcement or military agencies.

In fact, I’d like to know how many of those much publicized 19,000 U.S.-made guns traced by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) at the request of the Mexican government were legally sold to Mexican law enforcement or military authorities.

Come to think of it, if the whole of Mexico has been corrupted by the drug lords, why would the Mexican federales even bother asking the ATF to trace guns? Shouldn’t they just . . . disappear? An anonymous commentator gets it spot on.

Here we go again. As usual once the action is over 500 Fed troops show up to “secure the scene” [Mexican President] Calderon is trying to do away with local police and install a state system which could possibly improve the quality of law enforcement.

Nature abhors a vacuum. As the drug lords seize power on the local level, the Mexican military is moving in. In some senses, they have to. The local and state governments have lost to the drug kingpins. In other senses, they want to. Hence el Presidente’s insistence that the gun problem is America’s fault.

The Mexican President is no doubt afraid that the drug lords could use any perceived tension between the Mexican military and local law enforcement (i.e. “the people”) to paint themselves as anti-federal revolutionaries. A thought which is probably gaining ground, despite (or because of) the news blackout. [NB: chihuahuapost.com editor and journalist Rafael Armando Muro first filed this report. He was executed in a car wash just hours later.]

In any case, it’s highly unlikely that U.S. gun stores are the source of weapons used by the Mexican drug lords. U.S. efforts to stem the flow of American gun to Mexican criminals—such as the ATF’s recent $37.5 million funding for seven new field offices—are not entirely misplaced. Only mostly.

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

One Response to The Source of Mexican Drug Lords’ Guns Revealed

  1. avatarNukemJim says:

    "I’d like to know how many of those much publicized 19,000 U.S.-made guns traced by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) at the request of the Mexican government were legally sold to Mexican law enforcement or military authorities."

    A most excellent question indeed, one that I also would like.

    A problem may be that if the Mexican only sent the numbers to BATFE if then did not match up to the list of guns that the Mexican LEOs/Mil were issued. I've no idea of their workflow pattern.

    Would love to see an answer.

    NukemJim

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