AFP reports that on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2018, construction began in Texas of part of President Trump’s border wall to curb illegal border-crossings into America, which he correctly identifies to be a security threat.
Aaron Hull, US Customs and Border Protection’s Chief Patrol Agent in the El Paso sector, said in a statement that the new section along the boundary between El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, will replace the wholly-inadequate fencing along four miles of the 2,000-mile border with Mexico. “This new wall will be far more durable and far more effective in deterring would-be illegal entrants,” he said.
The existing fencing will be replaced by an 18-foot steel post barrier which allows Border Patrol agents to see through to the other side.
The $22-million project is to be completed in about seven months.
The wall-construction in Texas follows the construction of a 20-mile stretch of replacement wall in Santa Teresa, New Mexico, which began in April.
Congress has so far approved only $1.6 billion of the $25 billion Trump had sought for the wall. As part of the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill passed last March, Congress earmarked only $1.6 billion for border security, a paltry $38 million of which is allowed to be used for “border barrier planning and design.”
The anonymous AFP reporter snidely writes that President Trump “initially demanded that Mexico pay for the barrier, which added to tensions between the two neighbors,” and claims — without citing any evidence — that “Many of the migrants trying to reach the United States are fleeing gang violence and poverty in Central America.”
Meanwhile, Breitbart reports that in a recent interview published Sept. 7, President Trump revealed he is mulling plans to use the military to build the wall.
He told the Daily Mail he has “two options” when it comes to building the border wall: “We have military, we have homeland security.” Of the two, Trump said he prefers Congress approve the $25 billion in spending that he’s seeking for the wall and have Department of Homeland Security (DHS) undertake the project, but that failing that, he’s “very seriously” looking at the military option.
“The possibility of diverting Pentagon funding and assets to build a border wall is a card the president is holding but has never directly acknowledged before. In August, two Defense Department officials told DailyMail that the Army Corps of Engineers could take on the task: “They build levees that hold back massive walls of water. They can build one to hold back drugs and human traffickers.”
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