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October 20, 2006

Shame On The Bush Administration!

Most of us, I assume, are at least conversant with the affair involving (former) Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean, two brave and dedicated U.S. Government sentinels of both Law Enforcement and Homeland Security who were screwed over, big time, by our government for doing their job.

A spot-on article about the incident appeared in The New American on 18 September.

The piece opens thus:

While the Bush administration seeks amnesty for illegal aliens and grants immunity to a Mexican drug smuggler, it has thrown the book at two courageous Border Patrol agents.

These two men pursued a drug dealer who was also illegally on our side of the border and attempted to apprehend him. Shots were fired. According to the agents, they did not believe the criminal had been hit, as he was able to run back into Mexico and hop into a waiting van.

A vehicle the foreign criminal had abandoned in the course of the pursuit yielded 800 pounds of freshly smuggled-in marijuana. This evidence is ironclad proof that they were not pursuing an innocent man -- of course, even had he not been smuggling drugs, he was still in this country illegally.

The result of the incident was that the Bush Administration turned on its own officers like a rabid Doberman, arresting them as criminals and prosecuting them as such, so that now each may face as many as 20 years in prison.

The drug trafficker, on the other hand, was brought back to the United States, an honored guest of Homeland Security and DOJ, for free medical treatment for a gunshot wound he allegedly sustained in the hind quarters while fleeing the federal agents. He was granted immunity for testifying against them and is in the process of suing you, me and every other U.S. taxpayer over the incident. This same scumbag has since been busted for the same offense, in the same area, and was still not prosecuted because the Bush Administration is so grateful to him for condemning its own courageous and loyal agents.

I voted for George Bush both times, and have said in the past that I would vote for him again if he could run a third time, but this filthy, disgraceful incident changes my mind completely -- it has significantly lowered my respect for both the President and his administration.

What does this say to Ramos and Compeans' fellow Border Patrol agents, or for that matter to Law Enforcement and National Security operatives throughout the United States? That they don't have the support of their President nor of his appointees?

These men should never have been prosecuted, nor should the trafficante have been pardoned.

For their 15-minute pursuit of Aldrete-Davila on February 17, 2005, and for a couple of split-second decisions they made during that suspenseful chase, agents Ramos and Compean have lost a combined 15-year record of sterling service in the Border Patrol (10 years for Ramos, five for Compean). Even more, that 15-minute pursuit in the line of duty may cost each of them 20 years in prison, possibly alongside dangerous criminals they have apprehended.

Adding terror on top of calamity, both agents and their families have been subjected to death threats. In fact, according to the smuggler Aldrete-Davila, some of his drug-cartel associates from Mexico planned a "hunting party" to track down and execute Ramos and Compean. Both of these law enforcement officers have young school-age and preschool-age children. Agent Compean's wife, Claudia, is pregnant with their third child.
Incredibly, while agents Ramos and Compean and their families face economic ruin, emotional devastation, and real physical danger, as a result of that 15-minute chase, Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila — an admitted felon and drug smuggler — has not only gotten off scot-free, he stands to become a rich man, courtesy of the U.S. taxpayers. In a seemingly unbelievable turn of events, agents for the U.S. Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security contacted the smuggler in Mexico and offered him complete immunity if he would testify that Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean had violated his civil rights.

The two Border Patrol officers were arrested in SWAT-style raids on their homes and taken away in handcuffs in front of their families. By way of contrast, Aldrete-Davila, in exchange for agreeing to testify against the agents, was given free medical treatment in the United States, then escorted back to Mexico and released. He was also coached in his testimony by U.S. government officials, then brought back to the United States and trotted out as the star witness against Ramos and Compean.

In the meantime, during his release, Aldrete-Davila was arrested again with another drug load in the same El Paso sector where Ramos and Compean had previously intercepted him. Nevertheless, he was allowed to testify against the two agents and then was released again! He may have made many more successful drug runs into the United States since then. But he may be able to retire soon in the style of his drug-lord bosses. With encouragement and help from U.S. officials, he is suing the Border Patrol for $5 million

All emphasis mine.

I won't even comment on the crud-sucking bitch of a judge who is doing everything in her power to railroad these two good men into prison -- the fact that she was put on the bench by GWB while he was governor of Texas only reinforces my ire at the Administration.

My misgivings about George Bush's loyalty to his people might be alleviated if he gets up on his hind legs like a true leader and pardons these two men, restoring them to their former jobs with all retroactives. From the aspect of politics -- which are never far from the surface these days -- a pardon and reinstatement of Compean and Ramos would almost certainly have a powerful positive effect for Republicans in the fast approaching elections.

I am not alone in this way of thinking, there's an Ogre out there who feels about the same, along with a Raven and a very Big Dog.

Posted by Seth at October 20, 2006 01:41 PM



Seth, this is one of your best ever. A classic.
I will link to this for sure!!

Posted by: Raven at October 20, 2006 02:53 PM

Raven --

Thanks. :-)

As I indicated over at SPR, I did allow myself several hours' "calming down" time before doing this post.

The Bush Administration we elected in 2000 is not the Bush Administration we reelected in 2004, not if a disgrace like this is any indication, and I'm sure the GOP will take some hits at the polls over this next month -- our party is, after all, supposed to be the one that America "goes to" when there are concerns of homeland security.

I wouldn't blame anybody for changing their attitudes to that end after such an example as this. It is nothing worse than anything a Kerry, a Pelosi or a Murtha would do.

Posted by: Seth at October 20, 2006 03:21 PM

Man this is terrible.

We ought to make a petition to the Bush Administration to pardon those two men who were doing their job. It is sickening. This kind of thing sets up the very problems they are having in France. They hamstring their law officers who are helpless agains the rioting "youth" there.

It's getting more and more difficult to see the differences between the Bush Administration and any other Democrat administration would be. I'm still voting Republican, however. The alternative is worse.

Posted by: atheling2 at October 20, 2006 03:33 PM

Atheling2 --

I agree, despite the kind of treachery the administration is exhibiting here and the lack of resistance from the rest of the GOP, they are still far preferable than what the Democrats have on their menu.

What rankles the most is that rather than voting to the right for what were once reasons of its patriotism, honor, respect for the Constitution and the law, we now have to vote for them only because the alternative is infinitely worse.

Posted by: Seth at October 20, 2006 03:50 PM

Seth, I don't know what to say; I'm at a loss for words. Certainly I'm outraged that two honorable servants are being railroaded like this, but I cannot discern why. I do not see a motivation to unjustly prosecute two stellar agents. My gut tells me there is some element we are not privileged to that makes a difference.

I am pleased to see that Congressmen are involved demanding full inquiries in the interest of serving justice. I hope the two agents are exonerated and that somehow their personal losses are compensated. Their emotional sufferings will never be rectified, and that's truly unfortunate.

Posted by: Old Soldier at October 20, 2006 03:59 PM

Old Soldier --

If there is an element to which we are not privvy, I am almost certain it has something to do with the administration's reluctance to enforce immigration laws and its push for amnesty.

There is the spectre of that so-called security alliance in the works that they're not talking about, between the three North American countries, that would move our homeland security perimeters to our continental borders and better connect the U.S. with Mexico by building a major highway all the way down to Mexico's southern end. It is a project that would do major harm to our national sovereignty, and knowing this, the administration keeps the whole thing as QT as possible. It would be like a miniature EU, wherein border security would become moot.

I wouldn't be surprised if the two agents were being flaunted as an extreme example to keep their colleagues from being too tenacious in jobs that are intended, eventually, to become equally as moot.

I also believe that our members of Congress who are demanding "a full investigation" are doing so more for sound bytes than out of any real concern, responding to constituent input. Their track records to date on border and immigration issues do not do much to inspire me to expect otherwise.

We've sure come a long way down in such a relatively short time.

Posted by: Seth at October 20, 2006 04:16 PM

I have found reports that the sentencing was to have taken place yesterday (10/19), but I have found no report of a sentence being handed down. Perhaps there is yet some hope from the judge.

This whole thing is so totally inexplicable it seems to defy rational explanation. My mouth is left agape...Here are two other links:

Friends of the Border Patrol

The Right Source

Posted by: civil truth at October 20, 2006 07:42 PM

Civil Truth --

Innumerable thanks for the links!

OT, while going through the second one, I found something I've wanted to post on for some time but hadn't found such a vivid account of -- that will constitute the basis for one of my next -- if not the next -- posts.

Back on topic, I think what happened here was that, the bureaucrat mentality being what it is, the folks who opted to crucify Ramos and Compean expected the affair to be the typical, quiet disciplinary kind of thing that happens every day, as usual thinking the American people are stupid or whatever and they, tunnel vision idiot bureaucrats, are smarter and more big-picture ready than the rank and file citizen.

Now that this has exploded in their faces, they're having second thoughts about racing out to sentence the agents.

Nonetheless, if Bush doesn't stand up, personally, and exonnerate them, restore them to their previous positions and reimburse them for all their legal costs, effectively restoring them and their families in every financial and material aspect (as if nothing had happened) to where they were before, he will have proven himself, to me, to be unfit to call himself a true leader.

Posted by: Seth at October 20, 2006 09:45 PM