Brown Berets Threaten Minutemen

Cari Hammerstrom, Brownsville Herald (Tex.), July 28

PHARR—Once a powerful and militant organization in the Chicano Liberation Movement, the Brown Berets made it known Wednesday that they will oppose the Minutemen border watch group with physical force if necessary.

“We want to send the message, ‘Think twice before you come here,’” Pablo Delgado, a Brown Beret leader, said at a press conference at the Hidalgo County Democratic Party headquarters.

The Minutemen have said they will come to Texas in October, although it is still unclear whether South Texas is in their plans.

Hidalgo County Democratic Party Chairman Juan Maldonado said the party does not condone the actions of the Brown Berets; however, because the group asked him for a platform, he agreed to let them speak at the press conference.

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The Brown Berets, primarily active in the late 1960s and early 1970s, are likened to the Black Panthers.

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The Minutemen “are nothing more than a group of zealous over-enthusiastic racists that want to promote these types of immigrants as being terroristic,” Maldonado said.

Even before the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Sept. 11, 2001, he said, there was an unfounded fear held by some in the United States that Mexicans were taking over the country.

“For all the strides that we have made toward equality, the Minutemen are the epitome of hate, fear and ignorance,” he said. “We are unified to stop this racist movement from entering our region.”

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Cox claims southern border patrolling is a race issue. The “vigilantes of the Caucasian persuasion” don’t want legalization for immigrants. They want the Mexican workers to be at the mercy of employers, she said.

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