Madam Speaker, according to the Los Angeles Times, the Mexican Attorney General's office has informed U.S. authorities that the Sinaloa drug cartel of Mexico has been ordered by its leader Joaquin ``El Chapo'' Guzman, also known as Shorty, to use guns and shoot it out, if necessary, with American law enforcement. This has been ordered by the drug kingpin to protect his drugs from seizure and capture by U.S. authorities.

Law enforcement officials in Arizona have received two alerts that the Guzman smugglers have been told to, quote, use their weapons to defend their loads at all costs.

The threat of escalated violence is for several reasons. One, El Chapo no longer can afford to lose drugs because of his connections and partnerships with Colombian drug cartels that are making greater demands on him for successful smuggling into the United States. Also, El Chapo is competing with rival drug cartels and attempting to take their business, their territory and their drugs. Thus, he wants to make sure his smugglers outgun the competition old west style.

Another reason for more violence is the drug smugglers no longer will get paid unless they deliver the goods to a U.S. destination. Therefore, they are becoming more trigger happy.

A few weeks ago a shoot-out between two drug smuggling groups took place on a road leading to Phoenix, Arizona. The criminals were trying to hijack each other's loads.

United States Border Patrol in Tucson has stated that confrontation between law enforcement and suspected traffickers has grown more violent. The L.A. Times reports weapons-related assaults against U.S. border agents rose 24 percent last year as compared to 2007.

Besides using weapons, the criminals throw rocks at our Border Patrol and ram their vehicles into agent vehicles.Recently, again, according to the Times, agents stopped a vehicle in Douglas, Arizona, and drug traffickers on the Mexican side of the border laid down suppressive gunfire to pin the U.S. border agents down, which allowed the smugglers to retreat to the Mexican side of the border with their drugs intact.

The Tucson sector alone reports about 25 assaults a month on border patrol agents. Madam Speaker, there seems to be an all-out border war between the drug cartels and the Mexican-U.S. law enforcement personnel. But not much is being said about this border war.

Madam Speaker, this border war is real. Our government should protect our Nation from these gun-toting drug smugglers. Our border protectors should be given enough personnel and equipment to fight these violent cartels, including being able to use the National Guard. Our border protectors should also know that our government will support them in their lawful protection of our border, and when a violent conflict occurs, be more concerned about our border protectors than the outlaw drug smugglers.

In other words, we must not let more agents suffer an unjust fate like Border Agents Ramos and Compean, who were persecuted and prosecuted for political reasons for shooting a drug smuggler they believed to be armed.

The violence on the border will continue to grow unless the likes of Joaquin ``El Chapa''--``Shorty''--Guzman and his border bandits know the United States will not go away into the darkness of the desert night and simply surrender our border to them by silently doing nothing to prevent their unlawful invasion into the United States.

And that's just the way it is.