See the CNN interview with San Diego sector Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott:
In an interview Monday with CNN, the chief Border Patrol agent for the San Diego sector challenged the network’s characterization of the surge on the border by migrants Sunday as a “peaceful protest” of women and children gone awry, noting the vast majority of arrests were of adult males who did not qualify for asylum.
“What I find unconscionable was that people would purposely take children into this situation. What we saw over and over yesterday was that people would purposely push women and children to the front and then begin basically rocking our agents,” said the border chief, Rodney Scott.
The migrants, mostly from Honduras, rushed the busy crossing between Tijuana, Mexico, and San Diego after overwhelming Mexican federal and local police blockades. Several U.S. Border Patrol agents were hit by rocks, prompting the use of tear gas.
Scott said that of the 42 arrests made Sunday, only eight were of females, “and there were only a few children involved.”
They are “economic migrants,” he told CNN’s John Berman, “who do not meet the qualifications” for asylum.
“They can still apply, he said. “That’s a different issue.”
Scott pointed out that one of the groups arrested on Sunday passed numerous uniformed agents as they chanted, waved a Honduran flag and threw rocks at agents.
“If they were truly asylum seekers, they would have just walked up with their hands up and surrendered, and that did not take place,” Scott said.
Mexico said Monday afternoon it has deported 100 migrants who stormed the border Sunday. They were among the estimated 7,500 from Central America who are being housed in Tijuana, mostly in a makeshift shelter in a sports arena.
CNN and other establishment media outlets have featured a Reuters photo showing a mother running from the tear gas with her two young children. Such images have provoked outrage against the Trump administration. But the Washington Examiner recalled the Obama administration using a similar tactic to bring disorderly migrants under control in 2013.
Agents at that time used pepper spray in response to migrants throwing rocks and bottles at border agents.
On Monday, the Gateway Pundit blog featured a tweet contesting the narrative implied by the Reuters photo, contending that two cameramen in the background were staging photos of purportedly fleeing children.
Talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh on Monday noted CNN’s Berman saying the Border Patrol “deployed tear gas on Central Americans seeking asylum,” including women and children.
Limbaugh argued that if the migrants were seeking asylum, they would follow the rules and wait until their application was processed.
“Do they go get in line and wait and follow through on their desire for asylum? No. They start throwing rocks and they storm the border!”
Limbaugh rhetorically asked critics how they think Border Patrol agents should respond to someone attempting to enter the country illegally.
Should they “just stand there and allow themselves to be overrun?”
See video of the border clash from the ABC TV affiliate in San Diego: