Obama Administration Shuts Down Aerial Surveillance on Border

mexico-borderfrom – The Daily Signal – by Kenric Ward

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security quietly shut down Operation Phalanx, an aerial surveillance program that intercepts drugs and illegal crossings along the Mexican border.

Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, vows to challenge DHS’ move, saying Congress provided “full funding” for 2017.

Cuellar, a member of the House Appropriations Committee and the homeland security subcommittee, is drafting a letter to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson protesting the shutdown.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Cuellar challenged Johnson last February when DHS reduced Phalanx’s flight operations.

This time, Cuellar is seeking reinforcements from Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Reps. Mike McCaul, R-San Antonio, and John Carter, R-Round Rock.

Cornyn sits on the Senate Judiciary subcommittees on immigration, refugees, and border security and the terrorism, technology and homeland security panel. McCaul chairs the Homeland Security Committee in the House and Carter chairs the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee.

Abbott’s office declined to comment; Cornyn and Carter did not respond to requests for comment.

McCaul, who referred questions to the Homeland Security Committee, previously called on DHS to “develop a strategy to gain operational control” of the border.

“Over the last several years, Congress has provided billions of dollars to secure the borders, but without an end goal in mind,” McCaul said in a statement.

McCaul has authored legislation “to require the [DHS] secretary to gain situational awareness through the use of sophisticated technologies and other means, giving our border agents the ability to predict changes in illegal activity. “

DHS, which did not respond to Watchdog’s request for comment by deadline, asserts that illegal crossings have declined along the Texas-Mexico border.

But U.S. Border Patrol reports show that apprehensions in the Rio Grande Valley rose 27 percent in fiscal 2016 versus fiscal 2015.

In the smaller Laredo sector, Operation Phalanx accounted for 10,559 apprehensions and 4,007 “turnbacks” from March 2012 to December 2015. Phalanx was credited with seizing 12,851 pounds of narcotics during the period.

President Barack Obama established Operation Phalanx in July 2010 via executive order. The Army National Guard was authorized to provide up to 1,200 soldiers and airmen along the 1,933-mile southwest border to support U.S. Customs and Border Protection, a DHS agency.

Using advanced UH-72 helicopters, Phalanx flight crews generally consist of three National Guardsmen—two pilots and a sensor operator—and one Border Patrol agent.

Southwest border states of Texas, California, Arizona, and New Mexico provided the bulk of Phalanx personnel from their local guard units.

In addition to Texas National Guard manpower and resources dedicated to Operation Phalanx, the Lone Star State has committed nearly $1.7 billion in taxpayer funds to border enforcement since 2005.

President-elect Donald Trump has vowed to appoint more robust leadership at DHS, so Operation Phalanx could be back in business by January.

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R J Weber
5 years ago

The present jackass in charge playing president will do every thing he possibly can to pack the country will illegals and make it as difficult as possible to deport them believing that in time they will become democrats and dependents on democratic welfare. Increasing the load on working Americans Who he doesn’t give a rats a$$ about.

Marc Seeley
5 years ago

By their collective inaction, corrupt policies, and lack of commitment to control the border Obama and his administration have violated their respective oaths of office. Obama and his department heads and their underlings should be charged with treason. Without a secure boarder and without enforcing immigration laws they have abdicated our sovereignty. They have allowed and encouraged the invasion of our county by hoards of illiterate, unhealthy and incompatible people (including criminals) from our southern boarder. In addition they have imported 10s of thousands of muslims who will never assimilate and include a significant number of terrorists in waiting. I guess this is / was their plan all along. It will take a long time to fix the damage caused by these anti-American, progressive, commie, Marxist, Alynskyites ! Pray the the Trump administration with address these problems and repair the damage.

Mearl Thompson
5 years ago

Jeh johnson needs to go to jail and be someones girl friend.

Susan Lantz
5 years ago

I have to ask is this something that would have happened if Clinton would have won? The next thing I thought was, isn’t this the person that was saying give Trump a chance. We have to come together as a nation?. I’m not really asking I know. I’m just really glad that you are showing your true colors, SMH, childish, putting them out there for everyone to see the underhanded kinda job you’ve been doing all along. You are the one who divided this nation, you have been the one in charge#potus

Jim Monson
5 years ago

People who believe in opening our border probably still lock their front and back doors and all windows every night. Opening our borders is like leaving them all open and putting out a welcome sign to one and all. I happen to like our country and want us all to be safe. Our number one job of our government is to insure our safety. Stop all the give away programs and handouts, but don’t leave our front and back doors wide open. Thank you for the opportunity to express my concerns.

5 years ago

Obama’s agenda has always been to destabilize our Country in any way he can. He wants as many illegals to enter this Country as possible before he leaves office to add to the Welfare rolls, the debt and insure more Democratic voters for the future. His actions have been treasonous in so many ways. Goodbye and good riddance to our most anti-American President in history.

Jean Chamberlain
5 years ago

Barack Obama will certainty go down in history as the president who destroyed this great country. He hates America and all it stands for. He asked a black man rose to the highest position in the world and instead of furthering our position, he has dragged us down to depths oder degradation. When is he leaving again? None too soon. We aught to rejoice in the streets like those exiled Cubans following the death of Castro.

5 years ago

Obama may you rot in your degrading acts trying to destroy this country. You are an insult to the position you held.

Mark Dreyer
5 years ago

Barry is not stupid just a muslim. Everything he does is calculated for the muslim brotherhood and cair to allow as many non Christians into America as possible. Then when the numbers are in their favor good bye America. They will clamor for sharia and our republic will be lost forever. In the 14th amendment there is a part after a comma that reads ” and subject to the jurisdiction there of” comma are citizens. If your parents are lawbreakers by being here then you are not a legal citizen. Or am I mistaken in my own understanding? But then the bible states lineages as following the father.

Robert Qualls
5 years ago
Reply to  Mark Dreyer

If you break into my house, you are subject to my jurisdiction even though you broke the law, and since I’m a Second Amendment supporter you can imagine that my jurisdiction is likely to be strictly enforced. Also, while the Scriptures track linage patrilinearly, the Jewish tradition has long been matrilinear, meaning that you are a Jew if your mother were Jewish unless you specifically act to declare yourself not to be Jewish (such as by converting to another religion like Christianity or Islam). This is reflected (although not directly derived) in the Nationality Act of 1790, which states that children born outside the United States to a U.S.-citizen mother are automatically U.S. citizens by right of birth unless they later disclaim this status.

Brian Garrison
5 years ago

Sorry to change the subject, but isn’t it remarkable… 99.6% of us AMAC members want the Trumpster to withhold federal funds from sanctuary cities. I hope Dan Weber is reading this. This needs to be at the top of the AMAC agenda and pushed hard in DC.
–Brian Garrison, AMAC Delegate, Ohio-10

Al Edwards
5 years ago

I do not think Trump will do anything to Obama unless the dummy interferes too much in an underminded way. Trump or no one wants to actually jail these people, because it will cause a civil war with the liberal socialists. Those crazies will burn cities and every house of worship
left unguarded. Trump gives me the impression now, that he is trying to build good bridges, but some of them may not get built. We have a
very shallow minded (unprincipled) mass of citizenship lurking among us the last 15 years. These socialist professors have destroyed our youth.

AD Roberts
5 years ago

Is it not evident. Obama must have a large group of muslims terrorists scheduled to come into the country. He has to make sure they don’t get caught
Yes, Obama will do as much damage as he can before he leaves office.
Expect the White House to be trashed even worse that when the Clinton’s left.

5 years ago

HAV U HEARD THE NEWS?? POCAHAUNTIS wants to have a POW WOW with Don Trump to smoke the peace pipe! NICE !

5 years ago

Current administration still has 57 days including weekends and holidays left. There is still a lot the current administration can do during those remaining days. I just pray that he does not do more bad orders that will hurt the people and the country before he leaves the office. This thing about the border is troubling.

Robert Qualls
5 years ago
Reply to  craga

You can COUNT on his doing lots and lots more hurtful things between now and January 19, 2017. The shock would be if there weren’t any.

John D. Czelusniak
5 years ago

Obama, Clinton & the Dems. are ruining our country. Trump will make it great again!

Frank cicero
5 years ago

It will be back in operation along with ground and air support. Obama is useless .

5 years ago

Fear not, one of the hottest crossings is Texas and the Texas DPS and National guard will be expanding our areal and river boat surveillance of the Rio Grande, the Gulf of Mexico and New Mexico border for illegals crossing. In addition there will be civilian volunteers with night vision patrolling the border with radio contact with the DPS. Now, if the other states would just follow in our foot steps and do the same, we might just be able to save our beloved country.

jim mileau s
5 years ago

I want Pres. Obama out of office an much, if not more, as anybody in the group. I have been against him since the beginning. From his work record point of view, I just didn’t think he was qualified.
Having said that, we as a group have to remember that “We the People” elected him to office (albeit, not by a significant majority). He may or may not deserve jail. But, that is for the United States justice system to decide.
In any event, President-Elect Trump won the election via the electoral college. He lost the popular vote. In other words, there are still a lot of people out there who would like to see Pres. Obama’s type of presidency return. Unfortunately, we as a group are starting to sound like the “blame Bush” people sounded when Pres. Obama took office and throughout his terms in office.
Come on folks, as a group, we are better than that. If we have to criticize, let us make it constructive criticism that identifies specific problems and offer specific solutions. (I do not want to be a “blame Bush” type of person.)

Clark Kent
5 years ago
Reply to  jim mileau s

If you count the THREE MILLION illegal alien votes in California as null and void then Trump did not lose the popular vote. Not to mention the thousands of dead folks throughout the nation who voted for Clinton. The Dumbocrats are experts in voter fraud and have been for decades. By the way, there are still a lot of folks who think abortion is OK. They are wrong also and their opinions have no merit and thus deserve zero consideration. Here is a ‘specific solution’ for liberals: move to Canada!

jim mileau s
5 years ago
Reply to  Clark Kent

Clark – I’ve heard the 3,000,000 number as well. But I have not seen any evidence that it is an accruate number. As for abortion, as an R.C., I am very much against it. Your comments about the pro-abortion crowd are at best uncivil. Their are still part of “we the people” and their votes still count, so they have to be given some consideration. Your “specific solution” is not a solution because you know there is no way it will ever happen.—————-On a similar subject, a book you might injoy is a 1993 book by David Aikman titled ‘When the Almond Tree Blossoms’. It is a fictional story about the US where there has been a civil war between the constitutionalist and “The People’s Movement” (the progressive socialist liberals).

5 years ago

Yet another abomination in this Obama-Nation.

5 years ago

Obama and Johnson should be charged with treason. They endanger this country and stand without challenge by Congress.

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