SAN ANTONIO – Photos showing dozens of members of the militia groups on the U.S.-Mexico border carrying semi-automatic rifles and wearing masks, camouflage and tactical gear provide one of the first glimpses into the group’s activities on the border.
Members of the militia groups, who say they have 10 active “teams” along the state’s southern border, are seen at campsites, walking along the Rio Grande River, pointing rifles and pistols out of frame and flipping off the camera in the photos obtained by the San Antonio Express-News.
One of the photos shows a Border Patrol agent leaning through an armed militia member’s vehicle window and pointing on a map. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection earlier this month strongly rebuked the group’s presence on the border but did not return multiple requests for comment regarding the photo.
The groups, including Oathkeepers, Three Percenters and Patriots, began recruiting and organizing more than a month ago, as national media outlets began focusing on an influx of Central American immigrants illegally crossing the border, including more than 50,000 unaccompanied minors.
Barbie Rogers, founder of the Patriots Information Hotline, which is helping organize and recruit for the militia groups, said there are 10 “operations on the ground along the Texas border” from El Paso to Laredo to the Rio Grande Valley. Many of the groups are stationed on ranch land with permission from the owners, she said.
Some Facebook comments from members of the militias indicate the groups are not fearful of using force.
“(Rules of Engagement) is if in fear of bodily injury, weapons free, if fired upon, return fire. Real simple,” member KC Massey posted along with a photo on Facebook. “We are not worried about an “International” incident if they shoot at us.”
Full article: Photos show border militias moving across Texas (Houston Chronicle)