Armchair Generalist notes the latest "Everyone panic!" notification from the Department of Homeland Security. This time, a DHS official murmurs ominously about a possible alliance between Latin American drug traffickers and Al Qaeda. The modern-day Escobars have the infiltration routes; Al Qaeda might someday have nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons. This dark alliance of swarthy people might happen someday. Maybe.
Sure, there might be a "potpurri of scum" who do business with each other. After all, Al Qaeda members might need the occasional source for weapons and fake passports from somewhere. Opium from Afghanistan has to get into the US through some route.
But does that mean that Latin American drug smugglers have any interest in helping Al Qaeda infiltrate unconventional weapons into the United States? Um, assuming that Al Qaeda even had them, probably not. Look at how the Uribe government escalated its counterinsurgency campaign, once it found out the Venezuelan government was providing money and technical assistance to the FARC. Now imagine what might happen if either a local government or the US government discovered any collusion between drug traffickers and foreign terrorists.
Smugglers are businesspeople that exercise extreme caution, given the number of law enforcement agencies are constantly trying to monitor or infiltrate their organizations. Even if Al Qaeda agents did not have NUKE AMERICA tattooed on their foreheads, the smugglers would have reasons to turn down anyone they don't completely trust. Smugglers sneak drugs into the United States, not people, and certainly not people from the Middle East.
Just because something is imaginable doesn't mean it's a real concern--particularly when the US government is already spending billions of dollars to track suspected drug smugglers. The DHS should not be getting ideas for "public service announcements" from the technothrillers sold in the supermarket check-out line.
UPDATE: Maybe this is all a prank designed to publicize the planned remake of Red Dawn. We can only hope so.