Texas Governor Greg Abbott, Land Commissioner Dawn Buckingham, and the Texas Legislature has given the Texas Department of Public Safety the ““tools & authority to combat criminal organizations operating on Texas soil.”
Cartel members seized a remote 170-acre island in the middle of the Rio-Grande river, potentially booby-trapped and overlooked with sniper nests.
“This is OUR land,” Abbott posted. “We’ve taken control of it away from transnational criminal organizations that were using it to facilitate illegal immigration & drug smuggling.”
“Plant the Texas flag,” he added.
This is OUR land.
We’ve taken control of it away from transnational criminal organizations that were using it to facilitate illegal immigration & drug smuggling.
Plant the Texas flag. https://t.co/2qM4CxI4NY
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) September 30, 2023
Commissioner Buckingham had authorized DPS to access Fronton Island on September 7, saying, “I have made a commitment to Texans to use all means available to gain complete operational control of the southern border. Based on the records of our agency, the Texas General Land Office (GLO) has determined that Fronton Island is state-owned land.”
“… While the federal government refuses to safeguard Texas communities, the GLO will step up and assist our state in its robust border security efforts,” she said. “It is my hope that with access to this island, the GLO can aid our brave men and women on the frontlines of this ongoing border crisis in stemming the tide of this overflow of illegal immigration.”
The GLO noted further, “Fronton Island has served as a hot spot for drug and human trafficking and dangerous cartel activity in the past couple of months. This more than 170-acre island is the latest state-owned island the GLO has allowed DPS to police and patrol in order to stem the flow of illegal immigration and various unlawful, dangerous cartel activities.”
A reporter from the Dailymail embed with the Texas authorities who are trying to maintain control of the island.
From the Dailymail:
On the Fronton border with operation about to start the Rangers commander wrapped up his briefing.
Don’t disturb backpacks or piles of clothes, he cautioned the men. Last month, an improvised explosive was found buried amid a stash of weapons and semi-automatic rifle ammunition.
Mark the caches and call in the bomb squad, he told them, there’s a fair chance the cartels left booby traps.
Above all, the commander seemed most concerned with the burned out, bullet-pocked structures spray-painted with cartel acronyms on the bluffs overlooking Fronton Island from Mexico.
Those are the sniper perches.
“We have not seen people in there this morning, but we know that that’s what they’re used for,” he said.
The plan moving forward is to use National Guard combat engineers to create earthworks, making it almost impossible for the cartels to operate on the island. Additionally, Texas authorities will now patrol the island as if it were a warzone.