Trump To Send National Guard To Border

BY Herschel Smith
4 years, 5 months ago


“The situation at the border has now reached a point of crisis,” Trump said in the memorandum. “The lawlessness that continues at our southern border is fundamentally incompatible with the safety, security, and sovereignty of the American people. My administration has no choice but to act.”

The president said that the nation’s security was under threat from “drastic illegal activity,” including drug smuggling. He also cited the threat of gangs, included MS-13. “The anticipated rapid rise in illegal crossings as we head into the spring and summer months threatens to overwhelm our Nation’s law enforcement capacities,” Trump wrote.

The memorandum did not say how many National Guard troops would be sent to the border or for how long. Trump said he was directing Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, in coordination with Attorney General Jeff Sessions, to come up with “an action plan” within 30 days.

Uh huh.  This has been done before.

Unfortunately, I must report that “Armed does not always mean “armed” as most Americans would understand. There are various states of being “armed.” These are called “Arming Orders (AO)” which define where the weapon “is,” where the magazine “is,” where the bullets “are” and where the bayonet “is.” They start at Arming Order One which could best be described as a “show of force” or “window dressing” in the worse case.

After considerable searching, I was able to find a complete copy of the Memorundum of Understanding/Rules of Engagement pertaining to the National Guard Deployment (“Operation Jump Start”), which I could then review.

After reviewing the MOU/ROE, I contacted several senior “in the loop” National Guard Officers that I have previously served with, to determine how many soldiers would be “armed” and their Arming Order number. After confirming The El Paso Times article that “very few soldiers there would carry weapons,” I was advised that during the next 90 days, amongst the few soldiers that have weapons, no soldier will have an Arming Order greater than AO-1, which means that an M-16 will be on the shoulder, there will be no magazine in the weapon (thats where the bullets come from), and the magazines stored inside the “ammunition pouch” will in most cases have no ammunition, they will be empty.

It was also conveyed to myself that in the unlikely event that a soldier is ever harmed on the border, the Arming Order will not be raised. Every individual I spoke to envisions no circumstance where there will ever be soldiers at AO-3/4, where a magazine with ammunition would be immediately available. Instead the soldiers will simply be kept farther away from the border if needed. They will be deliberately kept out of harms way.

I know you are thinking (maybe screaming), “but Why?” The easy public relations answer is that a soldier could kill someone. The National Guard is going to ensure that there is not a repeat of the incident in which Esequiel Hernández was killed by a US Marine along the Border.

There are also numerous regulations pertaining to weapons. There is a requirement that a soldier must qualify with his weapon on an annual basis. Reasonably, you must be “qualified” with your weapon before you may carry a weapon. However, ranges for weapons qualification are extremely limited. National Guard soldiers normally perform their once a year required qualification when they go to Annual Training at Ft. Stewart, Ft. McCoy…… This year they are going to “the border” and unless there is a “regulation M-16 qualification range” down the road, they will not be able to get qualified. There is also the question of weapon storage and how do you prevent theft.

In order to deploy to the border as a military force under the current legal constraints, the following must be done: [a] the troops must be trained, [b] the military lawyers must craft and publish RUF/ROE (rules for the use of force, rules of engagement), [c] the troops must be trained on that RUF/ROE, [d] the troops must go through rifle qualifications while NCO and above also go through pistol qualifications again, and finally and most important, [e] arming orders will have to be issued.

It’s not going to happen.  They will sit at the border and push meaningless paperwork like they did the last time NG troops deployed to the border.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks


  1. On April 4, 2018 at 10:40 pm, George said:

    I can confirm this. I have seen NG deployments to the Border. The most productive thing they did was drive a few transport buses.

  2. On April 4, 2018 at 11:59 pm, Pat Hines said:

    In accordance with Article IV, Section 4:
    “Section 4.

    The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the legislature, or of the executive (when the legislature cannot be convened) against domestic violence.”

    The United States government OR the militia of the several states may engage invaders. In short, we citizens can shoot to kill any invader.

  3. On April 5, 2018 at 6:01 am, MN Steel said:

    When deployed to Bosnia there was a qualification range set up for 25m paper qual. Not much reason one of their weekend drills couldn’t be a trip to the closest Plastic Ivan pop-up range, with a 6-month paper qual to keep the bullshit going.

    With the added bonus of firing captured weapons for familiarity…

  4. On April 5, 2018 at 9:25 am, Fred said:

    Donald “Take the guns first” Trump and Jeff “screw the meaning of words” Sessions are going to send armed men to the border? So armed men are good this week? Are they bipolar? Will they outlaw the NG’s select fire rifles like they did with the bump stock, with a “phone and a pen?” Ooh that one hurts doesn’t it? Obama must be laughing and laughing and laughing.

    Will Holder be there to hand out weapons… TO THE MEXICANS? Bwa Ha Ha Ha Ha.

    Is there any confidence left in our government? Any? Well?

  5. On April 5, 2018 at 9:49 am, DAN III said:

    When my cavalry squadron patrolled the now non-existent East German border near Fulda, we were armed with small arms, basic load and grenades. Speed bumps that we were.

    Army Guard is more than capable of target engagement with issued weapons. The problem is the politicians won’t allow them to act as the military they are.

    Lock & load. Establish a free-fire zone. Engage the foreign enemies entering that zone. Simple AND effective. Violence IS the answer.

  6. On April 5, 2018 at 9:57 am, DAN III said:

    Mr. Hines,

    How long do you think it would take Border Control thugs to engage you, I and 100 collected and armed Patriots shooting any enemy invaders venturing into our defended sector of U.S. territory ?

    You know better….if we were not killed outright we’d be in shackles pending a murder trial in a fedgov kangaroo court. The CON-stitution is dead.

  7. On April 5, 2018 at 11:11 am, Fred said:

    “Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, in coordination with Attorney General Jeff Sessions”
    -This is why we lose every war and why we will lose this “engagement”. You don’t need a lawyers opinion to win a war and in fact, that is the surest way to lose. I’ve said it before, it’s no big mystery; you kill the enemy, you destroy their property, you drive them out before you, you utterly and completely wreck them and every thing that they are and then you kill them some more until the ones left alive submit. That. Is. The. Only. Way. To. Win. A. War. All else is a lie.

    “The easy public relations answer is that a soldier could kill someone.”
    -For fuck’s sake did you hire them?

    And all the range qualifications stuff is hooey, well, it might be technically accurate but when the need arises everything is waived.

  8. On April 5, 2018 at 2:34 pm, BohicaJoe said:

    Howdy, I spent two years on Operation Jumpstart 2006 – 2008 on the Texas border with the NG. We would patrol with the BP in vehicles and on foot. We carried the M9 and M16. We got two mags each. The mags were in the weapon but no rounds chambered. However, I personally locked and loaded a couple of times. Fire one round and you might as well fire all of them because your ass would be grass if you survived the firefight. BTW, we qualified on the BP’s standards and on their ranges. The NG saved the BP and American taxpayers tons of money. Col. Cannon was the OIC for Texas. He knows the personnel who have the numbers.

  9. On April 5, 2018 at 2:58 pm, Herschel Smith said:


    So let’s me specific. Your CO signed arming orders? Is that correct? There were arming orders for your unit?

    Pls be specific.

  10. On April 5, 2018 at 3:26 pm, George said:

    I was there for operation gatekeeper in San Diego. I never saw any NG troops who were armed.

  11. On April 5, 2018 at 3:28 pm, Herschel Smith said:


    He’s a new reader, so I’m asking for some sort of proof before I simply say “I don’t believe you.”

  12. On April 5, 2018 at 3:29 pm, George said:

    I hope it is different this time. The Border is too dangerous a place these days to be workng unarmed.

  13. On April 5, 2018 at 3:36 pm, George said:

    I have been retired from the Fed Service for long time. All I can tell you is that Hershel is correct from my experience. Now I know in some other states the military units were armed. Just not in the places I was at. I was not privy to the rules of engagement in those places. I suspect the situations where they were armed were limited.

  14. On April 5, 2018 at 6:55 pm, BohicaJoe said:

    Yes sir, it was SOP to patrol with mags in the weapons and unchambered.

  15. On April 5, 2018 at 7:05 pm, BohicaJoe said:

    The Texas NG did much more than push paper. We were side by side with the BP doing what they did with the exception of apprehensions. It was all documented and in some cases, actual quantitative and qualitative analysis of savings achieved by utilizing the NG. You just need to know who to contact…

  16. On April 5, 2018 at 10:15 pm, Herschel Smith said:


    Since you do not supply a military email address and use a nom de guerre rather than your real name, supply arming orders to my email address, or at least prove that such existed. I have filed FOIA requests and have yet to locate any such thing.

  17. On April 6, 2018 at 2:54 pm, BohicaJoe said:

    I sent you an email…

  18. On April 6, 2018 at 4:59 pm, Herschel Smith said:

    Yes I got it. It was just a recapitulation of “I am who I say I am.”

    Send arming orders.

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This article is filed under the category(s) Department of Defense and was published April 4th, 2018 by Herschel Smith.

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