My Night With The Minutemen
April 22, 2006, 05:00 AM
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[VDARE.COM note: Breaking News—Minutemen plan to build 300 mile fence along US/Mexican border, by David Marino, KVOA Tucson, April 21, 2006]

There has been so much chatter in the MSM about the Minutemen that I just had to ask

Who are these Minutemen and what do they do?

For answers to these questions, I headed to the California border with Mexico, where the men and women of the California Minutemen Project are patrolling for the month of April.

We were near Boulevard, in the eastern part of San Diego County. The border there is a rocky, treacherous terrain spotted with vicious cacti that I unfortunately did not notice until I bumped into them...yeah, good times...sigh.

The fence was a joke, by the way. Meaning there really wasn't one

I spent a Saturday night with the Minutemen because that is reportedly the best time to see the action.

Let me tell you a little bit about these marvelous people:

  • Eric, now in his 80s, fought at the Battle of the Bulge.  He was wounded, captured and held as a prisoner of war for four and a half months.

When his tour was up, Rick returned to California where he established several successful businesses, served on his local school board and mowed the lawns for free—just because somebody needed to. (Charming as the day is long, he reminds me of Forrest Gump without the low IQ or the obsession with Jen-nay.)

  • Steve, a proud U.S. citizen and immigrant from Brighton, England. In 1979, Steve left England armed with a 6 month Visa to work for a bank in Manhattan which later sponsored him for a Green Card.

When Steve married an American woman, there were a handful of cynics who accused him of only seeking  citizenship via matrimony…so Steve flat refused to apply for a visa through his new bride.

A software engineer, he moved to Dayton, Ohio and waited eight years for his citizenship to come through.

"I love this country…I love this country more than most who were born here" he told me. "That's why I'm out here—I can't stand what's happening to America."

Other volunteers were school teachers, businessmen, doctors and scientists…a famous scientist in particular.

He recovered specimens from the 1918 Spanish flu which will now be used to create a vaccine for the Avian Flu.  [More info here]

Yeah…sounds like a real vigilante.

And one of my favorites…

Now these men are volunteer Minutemen—great Americans and beloved war heroes.

To be fair, there have been myriad stories generated by the MSM about the paramilitary-style of the Minutemen Corps. 

Not to mention the images the MSM just love to publish!  For example: if there is a Confederate flag within a 50-mile radius of the Minuteman camp that will be the footage the MSM focuses on with some ghastly headline such as Neo-Nazi Border Patrol blah, blah, blah

I suppose it could be difficult for the average American to ascertain the truth when the story is told almost entirely from the (ahem!) not-so-objective perspective of say, CNN.

Tim Donnelly is President of the California Minutemen. He was kind enough to open up the camp to me and show me the ropes.

In his day job, Tim is a successful businessman. He volunteered to organize the California Minutemen because, once again, somebody needed to do it.

Tim's wife, the mother of his five sons, is Filipino.  Her father spent 12 years separated from his family in order to immigrate legally to the U.S.

As Tim explained it "He says that was the price he paid to give his family a better life in America."

Unlike the MSM, I didn't see a single Neo-Nazi—or anything even in that ballpark. 

On the contrary, when one member arrived for duty wearing full camouflage, Tim instructed him to change clothes—full camouflage or military-esque appearances are forbidden by Minuteman standard operating procedure.

Another Minuteman, Carl, had the dubious honor of guiding me up a hill to a main look-out point…

The path was littered with "booties" and garbage left by smugglers and their party.  Booties are strips of fabric that illegal aliens tie around the feet to conceal their footprints from immigration authorities.

Carl shared a couple of recent events with me.

A few nights before I arrived, a group of four Arab men snuck across the border and walked right through the Minuteman camp, apparently unaware of its location. 

Yes, four Arab men.

(Caution: next part contains graphic material).

Carl also told me about a particularly horrifying event from the previous week. He and the men with him heard the screams of a woman piercing the quiet of the night. The screams came from the Mexican side of the border, some distance from where Carl stood. 

A woman was being raped by a hired coyote who had brought her within site of the American border and then demanded more money.

She couldn't pay, so he raped her—they later found her panties tied to the border fence as a trophy and a warning to other women who can't cough up more money.

The Minutemen never found out what finally became of her.

The look on Carl's face made clear how frustrated he was that he was powerless to help—the Minutemen cannot cross the border…that would be illegal entry into Mexico, a serious crime in Mexican law!

Within an hour of my arrival, one patrol group radioed back to camp that twenty people were spotted hiding on the side of a hill just on the other side of the U.S. border. They were clearly waiting for the opportunity to cross the border undetected.

The U.S. Border Patrol was notified. Then the Minutemen just set up camp on the U.S. side of the border directly across from the border crossers and watched them—nothing more.

Border Patrol, of course, cannot approach anyone unless they actually cross the border. So would-be illegal aliens usually just wait for the Patrol to leave.

By the early hours of the next morning, the twenty would-be illegal aliens had grown frustrated with the Minutemen, whom they had now determined were not U.S. Border Patrol.

They began to hurl rocks at the Minutemen, hoping to run them off…yeah, not a chance.

After hours of what can only be called (ironically) a Mexican Standoff, this group of 20 left the area and retreated back into Mexico.

Tim later emailed me the weekend's numbers:

This relatively small Minuteman camp had spotted 114 such people. According to Tim,

"40 have been apprehended; 33 TBS (turned back south) and the rest are heading to a Home Depot, a school, a peaceful, pro-American rally, or a neighborhood near you."   

So who are the Minutemen?

President Bush and various Members of Congress have called them vigilantes.

After getting to know the men and women of the California Minutemen Project, I have a response for our illustrious leaders:

How dare you—you are unfit to represent this nation in any capacity!

Our government tells us that illegal aliens are just doing the job Americans won't do. Well…

The Minutemen are just doing the job our government won't do:

Defending America!

Bryanna Bevens [email her] is a political consultant and former chief of staff for a member of the California State Assembly.