COLUMN: Groups aim to take back U.S. border region

Published 2:28 pm Monday, September 27, 2010

By Wayne Goodnature

Guest Columnist

Most of you may think I have completely lost my mind — and maybe I have.

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I decided several weeks ago to do more than just write about the U.S.-Mexican border and recently I connected with four American patriots who have been trying to stop Mexican cartels from smuggling humans and drugs across the border. Two traveled to the border area from other states, one was a woman from Arizona and the fourth was a Marine (known as TS) who did two tours in Iraq and who has lived in the border area for years. TS is a key figure in the area because of his vast knowledge and years of experience with what he calls, “close encounters with border issues.”

I teamed up with TS and the others at their operating base early on Sept. 20. After an hour-long briefing, we suited up in our gear, loaded the jeep and headed out into the desert. There is a maze of well-traveled, winding roads that traverse the entire border area. On this day there was a virtual traffic jam of Border Patrol vehicles moving back and forth through the area. The terrain is rugged desert with heavy brush, hills, hidden washes, deep gorges and mountains everywhere. There are virtually thousands of places to hide, some within feet — if not inches — of the road we were on.

TS was clearly our leader, and he acted and looked exactly like you would expect. He appeared in superb condition, and by the end of the day I would observe him to be intelligent, charming, and absolutely fearless. Over time he has developed a cordial and open relationship with some of the Border Patrol, and we even stopped at a remote National Guard spotting post, introduced ourselves, and offered to help if they needed us.

We then drove to a mountain area which TS explained is a lookout post that Cartels use day and night to observe and report the positions of Border Patrol agents. TS said that the Border Patrol does not engage these positions, which are all over Southern Arizona, especially near the border.

I made the near-fatal mistake of suggesting, “We should take that mountain away from the Cartel.” Trust me, I did not mean to do it that day, but TS said he has wanted to take the outpost for months. We reasoned that if we were successful we would take an important level of command and control away from the cartel. TS explained that Border Patrol cameras would be watching our every move, but he also assured us they would not interfere.

Armed to the teeth, determined and scared as hell, we started up the mountain. The temperature was well over 105, the mountain was very steep and the footing was terrible. TS chose a straight-up route that brought everyone’s heart rate, breathing and sweat rate to extreme levels. Three-quarters of the way up the mountain signs of the cartel were everywhere — water jugs, candy wrappers, tequila bottles, backpacks, and even a partial deck of cards with the word “Africa” printed on them. Near the top we found an area where cartel forces had slept and had sprayed their insignia, “Sinaloa,” in large letters on the side of a cliff. It was clearly a warning from one of the most dangerous cartels in Mexico.

As we traversed higher there was additional evidence that cartel forces had very recently been there and that we had probably run them off the mountain — or that they were above us. At this point the terrain was extremely steep and treacherous but we were close to the top and nothing was going to stop TS from making it. To be honest I thought we were over our heads and I said so. Maybe it was my imagination, but I could virtually feel the cartel’s presence and there was excellent cover for them everywhere. We were at an extreme disadvantage, but TS pushed us to the top.

From there, we could see for miles into the U.S. and Mexico. Sites like are one of the main reason the cartels have been so successful with their human and drug smuggling business. Cartel forces can control everything from these types of positions and, for some reason, our government is letting them do it.

The men and women I was with that day are American patriots and they need our support, but more importantly they need our help. They are not extremist, racists or bent on causing trouble. They are just normal Americans who feel strongly about what they need to do and how it should be done.

They are Americans who no longer talk about changing what is happening on the border. They are acting. They insist that what is happening is tantamount to an invasion of the United States of America by foreign forces. They are doing all of this on their own dime, and do not have enough dimes for the various types of operational equipment, fuel, medical supplies and even food that will help them stay safe.

If you are interested in helping contact me by e-mail at, and I will discuss with you what they need and how to get it to them.

Wayne Goodnature is a former Mower County sheriff. He lives full-time now in Arizona.