Illegal Immigrants Suspected in 30 Border Fires in Arizona

Los Angeles Times, November 22, 2011

People entering the U.S. illegally from Mexico are believed responsible for more than one-third of human-ignited wildfires in Arizona over a five-year period, according to a government report that could stoke congressional debate over illegal immigration.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said the Government Accountability Office report supports remarks he made earlier this year after his state was hit hard by wildfires. At the time, McCain was accused of “scapegoating” immigrants.

“I hope this report is a lesson to the activists and public officials that would prefer to engage in partisan character attacks rather than help focus the discussion on the vital need to secure our southern border,” he said in a statement.

Illegal immigrants are believed to have started 30 of 77 fires that were investigated from 2006 through 2010, according to the report by the GAO, the investigative arm of Congress.

Federal land management agencies, however, did not investigate all 422 human-caused fires on federal and tribal land, as called for by federal policy.

“Only 18% of fires on federal land during the five-year study period were actually investigated, and thus, the number and size of fires linked to illegal border crossers may actually be higher,” McCain said.

Of the 30 fires, nine burned more than 100 acres each, 16 burned 10 to 100 acres, and five burned fewer than 10 acres, according to the report.

Efforts to signal for help, provide warmth or cook food appear to be the source of the fires, according to the report. {snip}

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  • Varina

    I knew it, I knew it, I KNEW IT!

    I also think some of them have been deliberately set out of sheer hatred and spite.

  • Lee

    We can add this to the BILLION$ that illegal immigration costs Americans each year.

  • June

    These people care nothing for property. Just look at the places they come from. It matters little to them the consequences of their carelessness. I wonder how many citizens’ lives were lost in some of these fires? When are we going to get a leader who puts aside pandering to the corrupt countries who urge their people to break into our country, and just demand that if they don’t stop sending them, all financial aid would be cut off? To back this up, how about our troops on the border? That would immediately stop the invasion, then start deporting – no matter how long they’d been here…Newt. Instead of rewarding those who’ve broken the law the longest, let them be the first to go and they are free to take their families.

  • Anonymous

    “Efforts to signal for help, provide warmth or cook food appear to be the source of the fires, according to the report.”

    Efforts to signal for help? Meaning what? They were trying to send smoke signals?

    At least the old-time American Indians who used to communicate with each other with smoke signals knew how to do it without burning down the whole surrounding area in the process.

  • CRAZYHORSE

    And do not forget the hundreds of Moslems who have come all the way up from South America.

  • J

    I recall reading about this the other day. And they said that “some” of the fires were started by the illegals. “Some” amounts to almost half of them. ALWAYS the MSM able to use clever wording to distort the truth of the matter, whatever it is.

    And maybe too not just started by accident or carelessness. Started by the drug smugglers and smugglers of illegals to escape the detection by drone aircraft.

    The Chinese communists when moving their troops from Manchuria to North Korea in 1950 started forest fires of epic proportions to create a smog, a haze, a hostile environment for flying aircraft, much less reconnaissance.

    I was in Santa Fe when this 800 square mile fire was at the worst. The air was filthy in a way it normally is not. That particular fire being evidently set by careless campers but others, many others, not set by carelessness but by intention.

  • Anonymous

    People entering the U.S. illegally from Mexico are believed responsible for more than one-third of human-ignited wildfires in Arizona over a five-year period

    Setting the fires American Citizens refuse to set?

    McCain said on Imus’s show back in June that Federal Agents have told him for years that illegals set fires. But we are not supposed to notice when illegal aliens commit crimes, anyone who does is labeled an obnoxious racist. If you or I start a fire we will be charged and if the fire is a large one we will be named in the media, and the government will attempt to make us pay for the cost of the fire.

    Illegal aliens have the full protection of the media, government, Amnesty McCain and the Sierra Club.

  • aj

    Efforts to signal for help? Meaning what? They were trying to send smoke signals?

    ————-

    It is plausible. Hundreds of em die in the desert. The smugglers often leave them in the middle of nowhere without water.

  • Fed Up

    No surprise here. I’d bet the farm ILLEGALS were the cause of many, if not most, of the West Coast wildfires over the last decade. After all, Latinos seem to think Americans OWE them whatever they want. . . Including unrestricted access to OUR COUNTRY!