AUSTINO – Governor Greg Abbott has announced that Texas will field a new National Guard unit called the Texas Tactical Border Force in an effort to fight illegal immigration.
Troops loaded into Black Hawk helicopters and C-130S on Monday to deploy to “hot spots” along the border in order to “intercept, repel and turn back” migrants trying to enter Texas illegally, according to Abbott.
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“Texas is the only state to build its own border wall and I am the only governor to ever designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorist organizations. That said, today we are announcing even more in response to Joe Biden’s reckless open border policies,” Abbott said. “If you want to come to the United States of America, you must do so legally, not illegally. Today, however, we have to do with more people crossing the border than ever before and this year we will set a new all-time record. All of this is the result of Joe Biden’s policy decisions. But know this: Texas is doing more than any state in history of the United States of America to defend our border.
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Abbott said the job includes the deployment of up to 10,000 National Guard personnel and 1,200 Texas Department of Public Safety soldiers. The National Guard and troops have turned away more than 37,000 people who are trying to enter the country illegally, according to the Texas governor.
“Beyond that, they arrested about 27,000 dangerous criminals, including cartel gang members wanted for crimes like murder, taking them off the streets to make sure they didn’t harm anyone in Texas or the United States,” Abbott said.
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Abbott said border officials seized quantities of fentanyl that could kill every man, woman and child in the U.S.
“Were it not for National Guard troops and Texas Department of Public Safety officers and troops, we would have that deadly fentanyl on the streets of the United States. We don’t know how many Americans would have died from this,” Abbott said.
According to US Customs and Border Protection, 14,699 pounds of fentanyl were seized last fiscal year, and so far 13,891 pounds have been seized this fiscal year.
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Abbott said officers and troops also bused migrants from cities like Del Rio and Eagle Pass to Chicago and New York. He believes “several thousand more” will be bussed over the next few days due to the massive influx of illegal migrants crossing the border.
The precursor to Monday’s announcement was a moment in December 2022 when a unit responded to a “long line” of migrants trying to enter the United States through El Paso, Abbott said.
“What that unit did was build huge miles of accordion wire, a border barrier, which in 24 hours stopped the influx to El Paso, Texas, and has remained effective ever since,” he said .
Abbott also said a “hotspot” was found in Brownsville, Texas where a “huge number” of people were trying to cross the border.
“We deployed the National Guard to the site to close that crossing and now that crossing is closed,” Abbott said. “It is projects like this that this elite National Guard team will focus on to identify crossing hotspots like that [and] close it so you can stop illegal immigration into the state of texas.
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