Do we have any recourse?
Does anyone have any idea of when this is going down?
Mexico applauds U.S. vow to enforce long-ignored weapons ban
12:00 AM CST on Saturday, February 28, 2009
Traci Carl, The Associated Press
MEXICO CITY – President Felipe Calderón said that his police and soldiers are dangerously outgunned because U.S. authorities are failing to stop the smuggling of high-powered weapons into Mexico. His attorney general called for more aggressive prosecutions of gun smugglers, saying that the U.S. constitutional right to bear arms doesn't protect them.
Soldiers guarded weapons seized from the Gulf cartel in Mexico City in November. The nation wants the U.S. to do more to halt the southern flow of guns and ammunition.
"The Second Amendment was not put there to arm foreign criminal groups," Attorney General Eduardo Medina Mora said.
Calderón has complained for two years that the U.S. isn't carrying its weight in the cross-border drug war, despite the fact that American drug users ultimately finance the cartels.
"I'm fighting corruption among Mexican authorities and risking everything to clean house, but I think a good cleaning is in order on the other side of the border," Calderón said.
A U.S. government report released Friday found nearly all of Mexico's increasing drug killings involved weapons from north of the border.
President Barack Obama's administration is beginning to respond. On Wednesday, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder promised to enforce a long-ignored ban on importing assault weapons, many of which are resold illegally and smuggled into Mexico to resupply the cartels.
Calderón applauded Holder's announcement as "the first time ... in many years that the American government is starting to show more commitment."
Holder announced Wednesday that the Drug Enforcement Administration had rounded up 755 suspected Sinaloa cartel members and seized more than $59 million in drug money in the past 21 months.
Congress is also paying attention. Lawmakers included $10 million in the economic stimulus package for Project Gunrunner, a federal crackdown on U.S. gun-trafficking networks.
Cartels turn to the U.S. because Mexico's gun laws are much stricter – gun buys must be pre-approved by the Mexican defense department and are limited to light weapons, no higher than the standard .38-caliber. Larger calibers are considered military weapons and are off-limits to civilians.
The Associated Press