Tribpedia: Texas-Mexico Border

The Texas-Mexico border makes up 1,254 miles of the 1,900-mile-long U.S.-Mexico border. 

The vast, mostly rural expanse stretches from El Paso in the West to Brownsville in the Southeast and is delineated by the Rio Grande River.

Border communities in Texas are some of the poorest regions of the state and the nation. If Texas border ...

Texas Department of Public Safety patch worn on a uniform during an April 7, 2011 graduation ceremony in Austin.
Texas Department of Public Safety patch worn on a uniform during an April 7, 2011 graduation ceremony in Austin.

Senate Approves Major Homeland Security Bill

You wouldn't know it by the miniscule amount of debate Thursday, but the Senate approved what some lawmakers called the most significant piece of homeland security legislation filed this session, a measure civil liberty groups worry is a major encroachment on civil rights.

Is Miguel Alemán the Next to Fall to Drug Violence?

Five months ago hundreds of residents from the Mexican agricultural town of Ciudad Mier fled to Ciudad Miguel Alemán, just across the border from Roma, Texas, after an offensive by Los Zetas terrorized their community. Now the residents of Miguel Alemán fear their town could be the next to succumb after a pre-dawn battle by Los Zetas and the Gulf Cartel last week.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 4/18/11

Aaronson on a freshman lawmaker's rogue antics, Aguilar on how cartel violence affects tick eradication, Galbraith on Midland's water woes, Hamilton on the exit of a higher ed reformer, Murphy maps voting age by county, Philpott on the data breach at the Comptroller's office, Ramsey on why Susan Combs needs to eat crow, my TribLive interview with U.S. Sen John Cornyn, Ramshaw on Cornyn's refusal to take the "nickel tour" of Planned Parenthood, M. Smith annotates the contracts of superintendents, Stiles on a GOP-friendly redistricting map and Tan on a possible Rainy Day Fund raid: The best of our best content from April 18 to 22, 2011.

Congressman Michael McCaul at the Texas Capitol on Feb. 23, 2011.
Congressman Michael McCaul at the Texas Capitol on Feb. 23, 2011.

Lawmaker Seeks to Label Cartels "Terrorists"

A Texas Congressman is seeking to designate seven of the top Mexican cartels as “foreign terrorist organizations”, a move he says would give law enforcement in the United States enhanced tools to combat the cartels. Critics of the proposal, by United States Representative Michael McCaul, R-Austin, fear such a designation could harm Mexico’s ability to wage its own fight against the cartels — and damage the United States’ relationship with its southern neighbor.

Federal USDA workers inspect Mexican cattle for fever ticks before admitting them into the country. If a single tick is found, the entire herd must be quarantined and sent back to the rancher.
Federal USDA workers inspect Mexican cattle for fever ticks before admitting them into the country. If a single tick is found, the entire herd must be quarantined and sent back to the rancher.

Slideshow: Fever Tick Inspection in Laredo

Federal USDA workers inspect Mexican cattle for fever ticks before admitting them into the country. If a single tick is found, the entire herd must be quarantined and sent back to the rancher.
Federal USDA workers inspect Mexican cattle for fever ticks before admitting them into the country. If a single tick is found, the entire herd must be quarantined and sent back to the rancher.

Cartel Violence Complicates Tick Eradication Plan

Mexican cattle are now examined in Laredo before being cleared for shipment to the rest of Texas and beyond — part of an effort to eradicate a fever tick infestation that has plagued ranchers along the border for more than a century. Until last year, the inspections took place in Mexico. But a ruthless battle between the drug cartels forced those inspection sites to close in March 2010.

Mayor of Juarez, Hector Murguia Lardizabal on the floor of the Texas Senate on April 11, 2011
Mayor of Juarez, Hector Murguia Lardizabal on the floor of the Texas Senate on April 11, 2011

Héctor "Teto" Murguía: The TT Interview

The Ciudad Juárez mayor on why his city isn’t the most violent in Mexico, why negotiating with cartels would be giving in to the criminals’ demands and why, despite a cartel presence, there aren’t shootouts in the streets of El Paso.

National pride was in abundance at the Mexican independence day festival at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center in Austin, Texas. The holiday celebrates Mexico's war of independence from Spain in 1810.
National pride was in abundance at the Mexican independence day festival at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center in Austin, Texas. The holiday celebrates Mexico's war of independence from Spain in 1810.

Former Ambassador: Resignation Was Right Choice

The former U.S. ambassador to Mexico, South Texas native Antonio Garza, said he thinks his successor’s resignation this weekend was the right move if he felt he was no longer up to task. 

Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples speaks to the press about recent border security issues at the Texas Capitol on March 10, 2011
Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples speaks to the press about recent border security issues at the Texas Capitol on March 10, 2011

Staples Has No Plan to Pull Controversial Website

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples has no plans to pull down a state-run website that allows border ranchers and farmers to document their daily struggles with drug cartels and undocumented immigrants. Instead he called a news conference today to promote the site and reiterate its necessity.

On State Website, Calls for Vigilante Justice

Texans advocating extreme solutions to secure the border — including land mines and booby traps on farmland along the Rio Grande — have a new forum to share their views: a website launched by Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples that allows ranchers and farmers to share stories, pictures and videos documenting their daily struggles with drug cartels and undocumented immigrants. But that's not all they're doing there.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn in the House chamber of the Texas Capitol
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn in the House chamber of the Texas Capitol

Sen. John Cornyn: U.S. Policy in Mexico Not Working

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn said it was time for the White House to re-think its policy concerning Mexico after the shooting death of a U.S. immigration agent Tuesday. “My hope is that the president would tell us what his plan is, because what’s happening now does not seem to be working,” he said.

Soldiers ride on a street in Miguel Aleman, a city in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, in 2010.
Soldiers ride on a street in Miguel Aleman, a city in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, in 2010.

Mexican Border Police Chief Gunned Down

The Mexican police chief in the border city across from Laredo, Texas, was gunned down late Wednesday, less than five weeks after he took office. He was one of 11 former Mexican military officials dispatched to the northern state of Tamaulipas to combat the increase in cartel-related crime there.