“Coast Guard Struggling with Southern California ‘Coastal Awareness Gap’ as Maritime Smuggling Rises” –USNI

Aerial view of the Port of San Diego with two aircraft carriers moored at North Island and three cruise ships in Port, from Oct. 4, 2012. Port of San Diego photo

US Naval Institute reports the Coast Guard is looking for ways to deal with a problem unique to Sector San Diego, a combination of proximity of Mexico and heavy offshore traffic.

“We’ve faced a major increase in smuggling,” Capt. Tim Barelli, commander of Sector San Diego, told an audience on the first day of WEST, a three-day defense industry conference hosted by USNI and Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association. Incidents of smuggling have doubled, year over year, in the past three years, “and I’m doing that with the same amount of people, same amount of helicopters and same amount of small boats. So that is my biggest challenge.”

They are hoping technology can help.

I would point, out this is not just a drug or human trafficking problem. Terrorists could use the same confusing conditions to cover a maritime attack on this major US port city and naval base.

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