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[Jul 05, 2020] Trump used looted Venezuelan public money to build border wall with Mexico

Jul 05, 2020 |

ET AL July 2, 2020 at 4:36 am

The Grey Zone: Trump used looted Venezuelan public money to build border wall with Mexic

An estimated $24 billion of Venezuelan public money has been looted, and the Trump administration has used at least $601 million of it to construct a militarized wall on the US-Mexico border.

By Ben Norton

In his new book "The Room Where It Happened," former Trump administration national security advisor John Bolton boasted that the British government "was delighted to cooperate on steps they could take" to assist in Washington's coup efforts, "for example freezing Venezuelan gold deposits in the Bank of England, so the regime could not sell the gold to keep itself going."..

Remember that Juan Guan is recognized by 50 UN states as interim President of Venezuela. But it's not the number that counts, but who those countries are. It is an effective loading of more votes per country though the unofficial Law of the Jungle system that the democratic West employs.

[Dec 14, 2019] To date (August 2019), the administration has replaced about 60 miles of dilapidated barriers with new fencing. And a major component of Trump's pledge -- that Mexico would pay for the wall -- hasn't been part of the equation. U.S. taxpayers have paid the cost.

Dec 14, 2019 |

Corvinus says: December 11, 2019 at 3:05 am GMT 400 Words

@Peripatetic Commenter "He has built more wall than the last three presidents and is on track to have one fully built by November next year. He has also reduced the amount of illegal immigration into the US."

To date (August 2019), the administration has replaced about 60 miles of dilapidated barriers with new fencing. And a major component of Trump's pledge -- that Mexico would pay for the wall -- hasn't been part of the equation. U.S. taxpayers have paid the cost.

"So right now, 78 miles have been built, have been built where there was an existing form of barrier," [Acting CBP Commissioner Mark] Morgan said, effectively admitting that none of the wall that has been constructed has been in new areas.

For the record, I have no problem with rebuilding and/or replacing our border wall. But Trump has failed to deliver on his campaign promise.

"If you want to bring money back into the country where it can do some good, you have to reduce taxes."

So what has been its level of effectiveness accomplishing that task?

Perhaps if Trump, like past presidents, would offer up his tax returns, we can see how much money he personally has "brought back" to our nation.

Of course, it would help that we stop outsourcing jobs. How has Trump fared here, besides having had his own merchandise made overseas?

... ... ..

[Nov 06, 2019] JSOC and the Mexican drug lords. - 1st Published December 2009 - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Nov 06, 2019 |

Freudenschade said in reply to The Twisted Genius ... , 02 February 2017 at 10:26 PM


my grandfather's property in West Berlin was maybe 700 yards from the wall. With binoculars, I could get a good view from my second floor bedroom. Of course the Berlin Wall was a much more modest border than the inner German one.

Arguably, after upgrades were started in the late 60's, the inner German border became a very effective barrier. One thing that made it effective (and mind you, it was a border keeping people in more than a border keeping people out) was the exclusion zone extending 5km from the border. Only people with special permits could live and work there.

In order to make the border more practical, entire villages were razed and parts of th physical border were located back from the actual border to avoid difficult terrain. Throw in the land mines, booby traps and 50,000 or so troops guarding about 870 miles of the inner German border, and it came to an effective barrier.

So I don't want to say we can't "seal" the Mexican border. But I think the expense in land seizures, manpower, and land mines is likely a lot higher for the 2000 miles of our southern border than the 15-20 billion estimated for its construction.

AEL , 02 February 2017 at 10:01 PM
Bismarck says that politics is the art of the possible. Given the huge demand, stamping out drug running is impossible. For an adequate price, there will always be people willing to meet the demand. At best, you drive up the price and make successful runners incredibly rich.

Oh wait..

turcopolier , 02 February 2017 at 10:11 PM
Bismarck also said that genius lies in knowing when to stop. A near certainty of death would cause a lot of cartel leaders to think about it. pl
turcopolier , 02 February 2017 at 10:26 PM
dilber Dogbert

Like what? Sending an army of illegals? Declaring war? Nuclear attack? Smuggling drugs into the US? pl

dilbert dogbert -> turcopolier ... , 02 February 2017 at 10:31 PM
Dean Baker bruited this idea:
"The alternative is simple: Mexico could announce that it would no longer enforce U.S. patents and copyrights on its soil. This would be a yuuge deal, as Trump would say."
The Twisted Genius -> Freudenschade... , 03 February 2017 at 12:17 AM

I agree sealing the border would be exorbitantly expensive. This would include not just a big,beautiful wall and the manpower to watch over that wall, but a massive surveillance and security presence along the Gulf, Atlantic and Pacific coasts. The expense would be similar to the cost imposed on the home front during WWII. It will require widespread sacrifice, probably a progressive tax structure similar to what we had during WWII. Maybe even rationing. Would that make America great and please the great deplorable mass?

Colonel Lang's idea of killing all the drug cartel leadership wherever we find them for an extended period of time would definitely be a cheaper proposition. I would call it the Rodrigo Duterte plan. I think making sure a lot of bankers end up sitting in their big leather chairs with bullet holes in their heads would do much to hasten the success of this plan.

Farooq said in reply to The Twisted Genius ... , 03 February 2017 at 08:56 PM

Have you read this? I am interested in your comments.


The Twisted Genius -> Farooq... , 04 February 2017 at 11:53 AM

The point of the article is that a strategy of leadership decapitation of an organization, whether it be a drug cartel or a jihadist group, does not lead to the destruction of the organization. The original decapitation strategy was based on the premise that the targeted organization was strictly hierarchical and could not function without an intact hierarchy. In fact, most of these target organizations evolved into more distributed organizations. We weren't quick to see this because we are also wedded to the need for a robust hierarchy in our organization. This is where the article ends, but the story continued.

Our strategy also evolved in Iraq and Afghanistan. JSOC strike missions became more than checking faces off a static organizational chart as a hit list. Each strike became an information gathering mission. That information was quickly analyzed into "actionable intelligence" resulting in ensuing JSOC strikes and more information gathering. This evolved into a rapid cycle with often several strikes in a night. This strategy struct at the enemy's growing resiliency and distributed organization. This is the present state of the art in JSOC operations.

[Aug 01, 2019] A 26-year-old billionaire is building virtual border walls -- and the federal government is buying

Aug 01, 2019 |

Fred C. Dobbs , July 30, 2019 at 06:53 AM

(Is this anything?)

A 26-year-old billionaire is building virtual border walls -- and the federal government is buying

Sam Dean - July 29, 2019

On a Friday afternoon in late July, a crowd of techies, military types and a few civilians deployed to the new Irvine, Calif., headquarters of Anduril Industries, a defense tech start-up, to sip hibiscus margaritas and admire the sensor towers and carbon-fiber drones on display. Dave Brubeck tinkled over the sound system, and the dress code skewed office casual and pastel, offset by the bright red pop of a lone "Make America Great Again" hat by the taco bar.

After an hour of socializing amid surveillance equipment, Palmer Luckey, the company's 26-year-old near-billionaire founder, mounted a stage for the ribbon-cutting. Luckey had wanted to use the company's namesake sword -- a legendary weapon in "The Lord of the Rings" wielded by the hero Aragorn -- for the ceremony. ...

Armed instead with large scissors, and wearing his trademark uniform of Hawaiian shirt, cargo shorts and flip-flops, he dropped some Tolkien on the audience.

"Anduril," he said, leaning into the long Elvish vowels, "means Flame of the West. And I think that's what we're trying to be. We're trying to be a company that represents not just the best technology that Western democracy has to offer, but also the best ethics, the best of democracy, the best of values that we all hold dear."

Along remote stretches of the U.S.-Mexico border, and on the perimeters of military bases around the world, Luckey's vision was already becoming reality. Customs and Border Protection is using Anduril's high-tech surveillance network as a "virtual wall" of interlinked, solar-powered sentry towers that can alert agents of suspicious activity, and the company has signed similar deals with U.S. and U.K. military branches. ...

likbez , August 01, 2019 at 09:07 AM
Much depends on the flow via particular area. If the flow is low this is probably a viable technological solution.

Cheaper then the physical wall as spacing between towers can be hundred yards or even more.

Solar powered towers is an interesting feature suitable for this particular area, where sun is abundant during the year.

Drones add flexibility of following intruders "from above" until they are captured, but how efficient they are at night remains to be seen. Again this presupposes a very low flow in the guarded area.

In any case the main task of walls and other entrance barriers is to slow down the flow not to eliminate it completely.

So that those who manage to penetrate the barrier can be dealt with more quickly and efficiently.

[Jul 28, 2019] Supreme Court Ruling Will 'Really Accelerate' Border Wall Progress DHS Chief

Jul 28, 2019 |

A Supreme Court decision to allow President Trump to redirect $2.5 billion in Pentagon funds towards his long promised border wall will "really accelerate" progress on the project, according to Acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan in Sunday appearance on Fox News .

The 5-4 decision will allow for the construction of more than 100 miles of fencing - the most significant step yet, according to Bloomberg .

McAleenan said while the court's ruling was "a big victory" to build more of the wall, " we do remain in the midst of a border security crisis " with migrants flooding the region and that Congress must take more action to deter crossings.

"We made very clear the targeted changes in law that we need," McAleenan said. - Bloomberg

... ... ...

The wall segments in Arizona, New Mexico and California would give Trump a tangible achievement to tout in his re-election campaign. Until now, congressional and court resistance had thwarted significant progress toward a stronger barrier on the almost 2,000-mile frontier.

During his campaign, Trump said Mexico would pay for the wall. On Saturday he said the U.S. would be "fully reimbursed for this expenditure, over time, by other countries." He didn't say how. - Bloomberg

Drop-Hammer , 53 minutes ago link

'Accelerate border wall progress'-- give me a fuckin' break. Trump has had almost three years to secure the border but has done nothing but blame the Demotards and our ***-infested jewdiciary for why he can not perform his sworn constitutional duty as POTUS to protect our borders/citizens. Christ, he must think that he has to have their permission and go on bended knee before them with his begging bowl in hand. Trump is a god-damned waste. He is what he described politicians in his campaign-- All talk and no action.

I voted for the guy and supported him. I will not support him in the next go round. Time to get a fuckin' crazed loon Demotard in office to motivate us to cross the line and start the shootin'. I ain't gonna end up a slave to jews/niggers/beaners/muslims/hindus/illegal alien mudmen just because I am a normal Christian Heritage American white guy. **** that noise. I no longer slumber in The *** Matrix.

chubbar , 2 hours ago link

Trump should award contracts to 10 contractors and immediately disburse the funds so libtards can't stop the building.

100 miles isn't near enough and we've seen areas where replacement walls are being put up at over a mile a day by one contractor. He could get 10 contractors or more building a couple hundred miles a month. Trump needs to build faster!

[Jun 21, 2019] Trump Barters For Borders -- And Wins, Big Time by Ilana Mercer

Notable quotes:
"... Trump issued an executive order, according to which a schedule of tariffs will be implemented unless Mexico polices its borders and ups its dismal rate of deportation, currently at 10 to 20 percent. ..."
"... Beginning on June 10, " a 5 percent tariff was placed on all imports from Mexico, to be increased by five percentage points each month until it hits 25 percent in October." ..."
"... Lo and behold, Mexico quickly promised to arrest Central American migrants headed north. Agreements may soon materialize with Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, to which Trump has already cut off foreign aid, in March ..."
"... How free and fair is trade anyway? Are unfettered markets at work when Canada, for instance, taxes purchases of American goods starting at $20, while America starts taxing Canadian goods at $1000? Hardly. ..."
"... There needs to be a huge turnaround in the number of illegals crossing the border if Trump wants to avoid being a one term president. It's hard to see the republicans staying relevant as well if the current numbers continue. They might hold the Senate for a little while but the presidency and a majority in Congress will be out of reach forever. ..."
"... In 2018, there were 70 million refugees, seeking safety from the world's conflict zone. One person was forced to flee their home because of war and violence every two seconds. ..."
"... Trump should have made reducing LEGAL immigration (and building the Wall to stop illegals) his #1 priority as soon as he was inaugurated. Instead, he dithered with personnel issues, then Obmacare (betrayed by rot-in-hell you bastard McCain), then tax cuts, Kavanaugh, loss of House, the End. ..."
Jun 21, 2019 |

If President Trump doesn't waver, his border deal with Mexico will be a victory. The Mexicans have agreed to quit serving as conduits to hundreds of thousands of central Americans headed for the U.S.A.

Despite protests from Democrats, stateside -- Mexico has agreed to significantly increase enforcement on its borders.

At first, Mexico was as defiant as the Democrats -- and some Republicans.

Democrats certainly can be counted on to argue for the other side -- any side other than the so-called sovereign people they swore to represent.

In fairness to the Democrats, Republicans are only notionally committed to the tough policing of the border. And certainly not if policing the porous border entails threatening trade tariffs against our neighborly narco-state. Some Republican senators even considered a vote to block the tariffs.

Nevertheless, to the hooting and hollering of the cretins in Congress and media, Trump went ahead and threatened Mexico with tariffs .

More than that. The president didn't just tweet out "strong words" and taunts.

Since Mexico, the party duopoly, and his own courts have forced his hand, the president proceeded to "retrieve from his arsenal a time bomb of ruinous proportions."

Or, so the Economist hyperventilated.

Trump issued an executive order, according to which a schedule of tariffs will be implemented unless Mexico polices its borders and ups its dismal rate of deportation, currently at 10 to 20 percent.

Beginning on June 10, " a 5 percent tariff was placed on all imports from Mexico, to be increased by five percentage points each month until it hits 25 percent in October."

Lo and behold, Mexico quickly promised to arrest Central American migrants headed north. Agreements may soon materialize with Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, to which Trump has already cut off foreign aid, in March

It remains for Trump to stick with tough love for Mexico and the rest. If the torrent of grifters from Central America does not let up, neither should the tariffs be lifted or aid restored.

Trump's trade and tariff tactics are about winning negotiations for Americans; they're not aimed at flouting the putative free-market.

How free and fair is trade anyway? Are unfettered markets at work when Canada, for instance, taxes purchases of American goods starting at $20, while America starts taxing Canadian goods at $1000? Hardly.

Free trade is an unknown ideal, to echo Ayn Rand's observations. What goes for "free trade," rather, is trade managed by bureaucratic juggernauts -- national and international -- central planners concerned with regulating, not freeing, trade; whose goal it is to harmonize labor, health, and environmental laws throughout the developed world. The undeveloped and developing worlds generally exploit labor, despoil land and kill off critters as they please.

The American market economy is massive. Trump knows its might. The difference between the president and his detractors is that Trump is prepared to harness the power of American markets to benefit the American people.

But what of the "billions of dollars in imports from Mexico" that are at stake, as one media shill shrieked .

Give me a break. The truth about what Fake News call a major trading partner, Mexico, is that it's a trade pygmy -- a fact known all too well to Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his foreign minister, Marcelo Ebrard.

The reason these leaders were quick to the negotiating table once a schedule of tariffs had been decided upon by the president is this. Via the Economist :

"Only about 15 percent of the United States' exports go to Mexico, but a whopping 80 percent of Mexico's exports head the other way. 'There is nothing we have in our arsenal that is equivalent to what the United States can do to us,' says Andrés Rozental, a Mexican former diplomat and minister."

Next, President Trump must compel Mexico to accept "safe third-country status." Translated, this means that the U.S. can expel any and all "asylum seekers" if they pass through Mexico, as Mexico becomes their lawful, first port-of-call.

Thinking people should realize that Trump's victory here is a Pyrrhic one. For what the president has had to do is convince the Mexican president to deploy his national guards to do the work American immigration police is not allowed to do.

The U.S. must turn to Mexico to police its border because the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has, to all intents and purposes, outlawed immigration laws.

Congressional quislings, for their part, have sat back and grumbled about the need for new laws. But as Daniel Horowitz argues convincingly, this is "a separation of powers problem." Unless the Trump administration understands that the problem lies with the lower-court judges [exceeding their constitutional authority] and not the law -- there will be no fix.

For President Trump, the executive order serves as a way around the courts' violation of the constitutionally enshrined federal scheme, within which the role -- nay, the obligation -- of the commander in chief -- is to defend the country.

Although they're temporary fixes, executive orders can serve to nullify unjust laws. As I argued in my 2016 book, "The Trump Revolution: The Donald's Creative Destruction Reconstructed," executive orders are Trump's political power tool -- justice's Jaws of Life, if you will -- to be used by the Executive to pry the people free from judicial oppression.

Understand: The right of a nation to stop The World from flooding its communities amounts to upholding a negative right. In other words, by stopping trespassers at their borders, Americans are not robbing invaders of the trinity of life, liberty and property.

All Americans are asserting is their right to be left alone. What we are saying to The World is what we tell our disobedient toddlers every day, "No. You can't go there."

That's all.

Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of Into the Cannibal's Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & The Trump Revolution: The Donald's Creative Destruction Deconstructed " (June, 2016). She's on Twitter , Facebook , Gab & YouTube

Nehlen , says: June 21, 2019 at 4:29 am GMT

If you believe Mexico is going to squelch the flow of humans into America -- the same humans who are wiring $25BILLION per year back to family members in Mexico -- I've got a fleet of taco trucks with square tires to sell you.
SeekerofthePresence , says: June 21, 2019 at 4:56 am GMT
Do you really believe this "deal" will have a substantial effect? It is like holding up an umbrella to Noah's flood of migrants.
Whitewolf , says: June 21, 2019 at 5:18 am GMT
There needs to be a huge turnaround in the number of illegals crossing the border if Trump wants to avoid being a one term president. It's hard to see the republicans staying relevant as well if the current numbers continue. They might hold the Senate for a little while but the presidency and a majority in Congress will be out of reach forever.
Honor is Loyalty , says: June 21, 2019 at 6:26 am GMT
The more this nonsense carries on, the more I empathize with Stalin. Sometimes you gotta bulldoze your way through. Democracy produces nothing but obstacles. Time to put the keys into the caterpillar.
sarz , says: June 21, 2019 at 6:33 am GMT
I'd love to see what Ann Coulter would say on this and on Trump's total score on immigration.
Leon Haller , says: June 21, 2019 at 7:58 am GMT
I applaud this move by Trump, and will of course vote for him in 2020 (for a patriot, what is the alternative?). But unless we end the LEGAL immigration invasion, all this is for nought, and Trump will likely be the last non-leftist Republican President.

I have fought immigration for 40 years without success, except for CA Prop 187 in 1994, quickly overturned by a dirty Muslim immigrant Federal judge. Immigration of racial and cultural and (now it's clear to everyone, as I knew by the 80s in CA) ideological aliens is simple invasion, imperialism by non-military means. We needed Pat Buchanan in the 90s; instead, the stupid Christianists, with whom I used to argue in the 80s-90s-00s endlessly wrt their insane priorities, worried more about abortion and queers (how'd that work out, morons?) than alien conquest – with the obvious result that "globohomo" is stronger than ever – AND we have another 50+ MILLION race aliens voting 8-1 Democrat.

Sadly, Trump and the all-GOP 2017-18 Congress were America's very last chance to stop the invasion and save our (and the GOP's) future. Trump blew it, utterly. Now the USA as a unitary, Occidental, Constitutional, capitalist nation-state cannot be salvaged and/or restored. The only hope for American patriots is White conservative territorial ingathering and eventual racial secession and new sovereignty.

Bardon Kaldian , says: June 21, 2019 at 8:16 am GMT

Unless the Trump administration understands that the problem lies with the lower-court judges [exceeding their constitutional authority] and not the law -- there will be no fix.

This is the crux. And this is true, too..

Free trade is an unknown ideal, to echo Ayn Rand's observations. What goes for "free trade," rather, is trade managed by bureaucratic juggernauts -- national and international -- central planners concerned with regulating, not freeing, trade; whose goal it is to harmonize labor, health, and environmental laws throughout the developed world. The undeveloped and developing worlds generally exploit labor, despoil land and kill off critters as they please.

Renoman , says: June 21, 2019 at 8:22 am GMT
There are many times when a punch in the face is far more effective than diplomacy, this was one. Good for Donny, good for America.
Gracchus Babeuf , says: June 21, 2019 at 9:03 am GMT
In 2018, there were 70 million refugees, seeking safety from the world's conflict zone. One person was forced to flee their home because of war and violence every two seconds.
Greg Bacon , says: Website June 21, 2019 at 9:28 am GMT
"And I'll huff and puff and bow your house down," said the Big, Bad Wolf.

When stories about the record number of illegals flooding in stop hitting the news cycle, and we no longer get possibly Ebola infected Congolese with wads of $100 bills, I might believe your assumptions.

Africans Coming Across The Southern Border Have "Rolls Of $100 Bills"

Has Herr Trump huffed and puffed the same hot air towards the Congo?

Greg Bacon , says: June 21, 2019 at 9:42 am GMT
One more thought: Remember that hot air the Big, Bad Orange wolf blew that ICE was going to start rounding up millions of illegals on Tuesday? Here it is Friday and no action.

How many times will people fall for Trump's BS promises where nothing gets done or he backtracks?

Madame Mercer, I suspect the real reason behind your story is that Trump is the best POTUS for Israel since the traitor LBJ and that a certain group wants to keep Tubby the Grifter in the WH so he can keep acting as Israel's de facto real estate agent.

Realist , says: June 21, 2019 at 10:09 am GMT

Trump Barters for Borders -- and Wins, Big Time

Trump was won nothing big time. Including his election. His wins are miniscule. You are becoming an insufferable sycophant.

wesmouch , says: June 21, 2019 at 10:11 am GMT
The simpleton Mercer misses what is really going on. The re-election push is on and Trump will roll out "plans" to deal with immigration. They will never come into fruition as they are mere "boob bait for bubba". The drug cartels run Mexico and people trafficking is a bigger business than drug trafficking. If you think they are going to stop, you are as delusional as Ms Mercer. By the way the politicians work for the drug cartels in Mexico. Of course the advice that Mercer gave to South Africa led to the current situation where the ANC runs the country and whites are disenfranchised. But what else would you expect from a Jew who sell the goyim down the river every chance they get.
Leon Haller , says: June 21, 2019 at 10:26 am GMT
@sarz Grade: D+ (every other President since Kennedy: F)

Trump should have made reducing LEGAL immigration (and building the Wall to stop illegals) his #1 priority as soon as he was inaugurated. Instead, he dithered with personnel issues, then Obmacare (betrayed by rot-in-hell you bastard McCain), then tax cuts, Kavanaugh, loss of House, the End.

America is gone as not only a White nation, but within 25 years, even a semi-civilized and First World one. Diversity is what destroyed us. We could have integrated (more or less) the blacks, but the sheer numbers of mostly clannish nonwhite colonizers since 1968 has doomed us. America was its White, Christian, Anglo-Nordic majority. Without that majority, American dies.

On to the Ethnostate!

vinteuil , says: June 21, 2019 at 10:36 am GMT
@Gracchus Babeuf

I guess it's ok to bomb the crap out of other countries, but when those people try and get away from the hell created, that's supposed to be wrong.

Has the U.S. been bombing Central America, lately? I must have missed that.

[Jan 23, 2019] The wall, barrier system or whatever you want to call it presently exists on a number of sections of the border

A lot of grandstanding over a minor issue.
Jan 23, 2019 |
Concerning the partial shutdown and and the border barriers 1 - The banks, credit unions and any other financial institutions that can lend money are missing a chance to build a lot of good will in this situation. Good will is an item that any good business plan must take into account even of it is impossible to quantify on paper. Good will leads to more customers. Businesses want to acquire more customers. The 800k federal employees now on furlough have legislated assurance that their back pay will be quickly forthcoming when the pause ends. Sooo! Make them no interest loans in the amount of their postponed pay. You will not be sorry if you do that. I don't know if that could be extended to contract employees since the contract that includes their services may not insure back pay.

2 - The wall, barrier system or whatever you want to call it presently exists on a number of sections of the border. Pelosi, Schumer and the other Democrats who prattle about the "immorality" and uselessness of physical border defenses should be asked each and every day if they want the present border barriers demolished so that anyone can cross the border whenever they want and anywhere they want. California is the destination of choice of these economic migrants. If the border barriers are taken down, there will be IMO a mass migration into what is now the United States and especially into California from Latin American and then inevitably from all over the world. Ask the Democrats, every day if they want the existing border barriers taken down, Ask them! pl

TTG , 4 hours ago

The current fight over "the wall" and funding for that wall is pure politics on both sides. We are under a partial government shutdown for the sake of a symbol. Some kind of border barrier has been in existence since the 90s and the "Secure Border Act" of 2006 called for close to 700 miles of double fence barriers. Both Republican and Democratic legislatures and presidencies have maintained and added to this fencing as well as doubling the size of the CBP. According to a December 2016 GAO report on securing the SW border, the CBP spent $2.4 billion between 2007 and 2015 to deploy tactical infrastructure (TI) - fencing, gates, roads, bridges, lighting and drainage infrastructure distributed along the entire SW border area. That includes 654 miles of fencing and 5,000 miles of roads.

A total of $1.7 billion was appropriated in FY17 and FY18 for new and replacement barriers and fences. Most of those funds have been obligated to the Corp of Engineers and much of that has been awarded to contractors. Only a small percentage (6%) has been paid out for completed contracts. The following projects account for close to half of those funds:

- In New Mexico to replace 20 miles of fencing with bollard wall for $73 million. Contract was awarded in February 2018. Construction started in April 2018 and was completed in September 2018.

- In the Rio Grande Valley to build 8 miles of 18 foot bollard wall and replace existing levee wall for $167 million to begin in February 2019.

- In Arizona to build/replace 32 miles of "primary pedestrian wall" for $324 million to begin in April 2019.

- Near San Diego to replace 14 miles of 8-10 foot metal wall/fence with 18-30 foot tall bollard wall system for $287 million to begin in July 2019.

Trump's current demand for $5.7 billion covers an additional 243 miles of fencing mostly in the Rio Grande Valley. It'll probably be 2020 before a single bollard is set from that $5.7 billion and several years after that to issue the contracts and complete the construction. Given the shortcoming in the present border fences, that $5.7 billion would be better spent on replacing the present barriers in the most needed areas rather constructing new fence in less vulnerable areas. Just to maintain and replace what we have should require close to a billion dollars a year. I say again, this current battle over $5.7 billion for "the wall" is political posturing by both sides.

The more important demand made by Trump was the $800 million to address the humanitarian crisis on the border. These funds would provide for improved care/processing of refugees/asylum seekers, 2,750 more border agents and 75 more immigration judges. In my opinion, that would be a wise expense. I think there ought to be ten times that number of new border agents/officers to better address the refugee problem (humanitarian crisis) which will probably remain for many years. Climate change is making drought, hurricanes, floods and mudslides the new normal in Central America. The farming economy in this region, which includes southern Mexico is collapsing. Local governments are dysfunctional and impotent. These people are going to migrate or die in place.

If you want to declare a national emergency, we could use eminent domain to condemn and buy a lot of farmland at cost from corporate agribusinesses and start a "40 acres and a mule" program for refugee farm families and any native American family who desire a new start.

Mark Logan -> TTG , 2 hours ago
Have to agree. Trump only asked for $1.6 billion for his wall in his 2019 budget...and got it. He then decided to have a fight, one that he was loath to have when the Republicans held the majority in the House.

IMO Pelosi and co have also decided this is a good place to have a Waterloo. This isn't a struggle for a wall it's a struggle for dominance. They await a tide of public opinion to decide it.

Eugene Owens -> TTG , 3 hours ago
A pox on both their houses!
John P. Teschke , 9 hours ago
They should shut down the whole regime. The first things to be shut down should be the myriad of bases occupying foreign soil, particularly the bases that support the destabilization of middle eastern countries. ReplyShare › Twitter Facebook
James Thomas , 9 hours ago
I am on the left and I don't have a problem with the wall. That said, if you really want to reduce illegal immigration exit controls would be more effective (and much more cost effective). I went through a whole lot of trouble to get a work visa to work legally in Poland in the late 90s - and I wouldn't have bothered if Poland didn't have exit controls. Almost every country in the world has exit controls ... except for Canada and the US.
Pat Lang Mod -> James Thomas , 7 hours ago
You need a wide variety of techniques. This will of necessity include border barriers.
EdwardAmame -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
Oh cut it out. The wall is bullshit. If Trump was actually serious about illegal immigration he'd be pushing E-Verify for all US businesses to determine the eligibility of employees. But the GOP business lobby would never allow that so we get dog and pony shows like this so that Trump can act like he really means business.
Pat Lang Mod -> EdwardAmame , 14 minutes ago
Well, at last you have made a logical point. E-verify should be made mandatory. You would probably loose a lot of friends if it were. BTW, your many insulting comments today have caused me after many years to ban you.
ex-PFC Chuck , a day ago
With regard to #1 I'm not holding my breath. Fundamental to the financial sector's business model is opportunistic predation. As Michael Hudson relentlessly documents in his recently published and forgive them their debts: Lending, Foreclosure and Redemption from Bronze Age Finance to the Jubilee Year , it has been this way since money was invented in the ancient Near East over five thousand years ago. In today's world few banksters can be expected to forego invoking the fine print terms regarding the late fees and interest rate hikes, especially considering the fact the careers of the CEOs and CFOs of publicly traded companies live or die by the next quarterly earnings report.
Sadly Hudson's important book is getting little traction. He could only get this published on a print-to-order basis in spite of the fact he has about a dozen prior books to his credit. As a PtO book it will not be stocked by chain book stores.
MP98 , a day ago
They would never admit it, but of courser the Democrats want all the barriers gone and an open border.
There are approx. 22 mil. illegal aliens in this country and the Democrats want more and more.
Then they can push for amnesty (which the swamp Republicans, in their gross stupidity, will go along with) and PRESTO: 22 mil. plus entitled Democrat voters.
Who needs those redneck goober
MP98 , a day ago
They would never admit it, but of courser the Democrats want all the barriers gone and an open border.
There are approx. 22 mil. illegal aliens in this country and the Democrats want more and more.
Then they can push for amnesty (which the swamp Republicans, in their gross stupidity, will go along with) and PRESTO: 22 mil. plus entitled Democrat voters.
Who needs those redneck goober (white male)Trump voters, anyway?
Eugene Owens , 4 hours ago
ex-PFC Chuck , 6 hours ago
As Philip Giraldi points out in a post a The Unz Review today, the Democratic establishment isn't opposed to walls per se. It depends on who's building it and for what purpose.

RaisingMac , 7 hours ago
Pelosi, Schumer and the other Democrats who prattle about the immorality and uselessness of physical border defenses should be asked each and every day if they want the present border barriers demolished so that anyone can cross the border whenever they want and anywhere they want The wall, barrier system or whatever you want to call it presently exists on a number of sections of the border.

In honor of Sen. Chuck 'Shomer', I vote that we call our border barrier a fence , just as Israel does:

Play Hide
Pat Lang Mod -> RaisingMac , 5 hours ago
You are repeating what I wrote? Tell the Dems, not me.
Lewis.Ballard , 10 hours ago
Sir: While not directly on point, I knuckled under and signed up with Disqus simply to say how much I have appreciated this committee of correspondence over the years. Seeing your post recently about conversing with Glubb Pasha was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.
Eric Newhill , 13 hours ago
IMO, we should sell coastal California to Mexico for $100 billion. Then use that money to build a wall from Oregon to Brownsville, TX. Solves two problems in one fell swoop.
It sure does seem like the lenders are missing an excellent opportunity for a nearly risk free public relations campaign as well as sales opportunities. Get these furloughed workers in the door and give them a furlough loan and then get them interested in home loans, auto loans...whatever they're qualified for. Should be a no-brainer.
Pat Lang Mod -> Eric Newhill , 11 hours ago
I would rather buy Baja California from Mexico.
peter hodges -> Pat Lang , 3 hours ago
We would still be stuck with LA and the Bay Area.
Pat Lang Mod -> peter hodges , 11 minutes ago
Stuart Wood , 16 hours ago
Trump, his wall, and the shutdown

Trump is our chief executive charged with the day to day running of the government and the proverbial "making the trains run on time" for government functions. All these functions work for him, not the legislative branch. His partial shutdown of the government reminds me of the classic film Blazing Saddles where the black sheriff, played by Cleavon Little, takes himself hostage by holding a gun to his own head to hold off a mob angry at having a black appointed sheriff for their town. It worked in the film. Let's hope it does not work in Washington.

Fred -> Stuart Wood , 14 hours ago
"This, I believe, is what the majority of the populace want." ... " his wall"
I believe that is why he won the election.
Harlan Easley -> Fred , 12 hours ago
Fred, just finished the book you recommended "A Disease in the Public Mind - Why We Fought the Civil War" by Thomas Flemming. The most balanced and fair nonfiction historical book I have read on this subject.

Also depressing because History is repeating itself. Not rhyming but repeating itself. The modern day abolitionist is convinced of their morale superiority over the deplorables. Just look at the Fake News regarding the Catholic School boys. One abolitionist said on Twitter that he wish they were dead along with their parents.

I hate the agenda of the Paul Ryan wing of the Republican Party but I hate these modern day abolitionist more since they desire to kill people just because they don't agree with their transgender, open borders anarchy, and taxes on the little guy for a Climate Change problem that doesn't exist. The Yellow Vest movement is a push back against this madness.

Instead of talking Medicare for All, jobs for everyone, prosperity, taking care of your countryman the political narrative is on bizarre subjects due to the Elite knowing Globalization is destroying huge sections of Western Civilization. The Yellow Vest have destroyed 60% of the Speed Cameras deployed to catch the little guy going 5 m.p.h. over the speed limit or running a red light that is timed to get you. It has nothing to do with safety and everything to do with raising money off the individuals who are already struggling to survive.

For the top 26 billionaires in the world to have as much wealth as the bottom 3.8 billion people in the world is barbaric. Globalization has led to drastic income inequality and the fuse is burning.

Fred -> Harlan Easley , 9 hours ago

Glad you read the book. I agree when you say " The modern day abolitionist is convinced of their morale superiority over the deplorables." I wrote an early piece about that existential angst of this newest generation. (Hard to believe it has already been two years.) https://turcopolier.typepad...

I think this generation is waking up to having 'been played' by the politicians. What is being missed in this latest effort to control the narrative is 1) Anti-Semitism in the Women's march which led many groups, inluding the DNC, to withdraw support. 2) A turnout that's roughly 90% lower than two years ago and a far, far cry from what was promoted. Others in random order: Unempolyment is way down. The stock market is up almost 10% since the shutdown began. Turmp is directing that the armed forces leave Syria (Afghanistan is probably next) and North Korea is making further move gestures towards actual denuclearization.

Eric Newhill -> Fred , 8 hours ago
What will be interesting to see, in the long run, is if the Democrats can keep the Hispanic vote. Being godless sodomites, the new age abolitionists are making war on Catholics and, it just so happens, that Hispanics, by and large, are serious about their Catholicism.
Pat Lang Mod -> Eric Newhill , 8 hours ago
Yes. It seems likely that the Hispanics will gradually gravitate to the GOP.
EdwardAmame -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
Maybe, but not the GOP that currently exists.
Harlan Easley -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
I don't see it. California proves otherwise. Texas and Georgia have become competitive because of illegal immigrants having American born kids. The abolitionist say demography is destiny and I tend to agree. Shows how racist they are. And how much they hate white people.

I see the Republican Party becoming noncompetitive to extinct over the next 20 years. And the Democrat Party separating into 2 parties. The Progressive Wing versus the Moderate Wing. Of course it could just all burned down before then and I wouldn't be surprised. I plan to read your book next and have no doubt I will enjoy it. I've read the free excerpts you provided and enjoyed them.

In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if future white generations in America do not emigrate to Russia. I hate to be pessimistic but the monkey brain of man is incurable and hate runs rampant. The modern day white abolitionist will be sideline to the trailer park but they are too stupid to see it.

We need a new party in America that is for all colors of citizens and an economic populist platform along with a social justice system that is vibrant.

The Democrat Party is the most vile/racist/bigoted party in the world right now. This modern abolitionist attitude that killed many innocent Iraqi's due to no fault of their own and believes they can dictate to countries such as Afghanistan, Syria, and Russia on how to live because they are gender neutral is going to come back and destroy them. Either through a home grown movement such as the Yellow Vest or worse to all of our detriment.

Eric Newhill -> Pat Lang , 5 hours ago
Sir, It may already be happening. An NPR/PBS/Marist January poll (that's not Fox/Breitbart) shows approval of the performance of Trump among Hispanics rising from 31% to 50% since the same poll was performed just prior to the shutdown. I can't figure out if Trump is a 10th level Jedi master or if it's a case of the one eyed man being king in the land of the blind.
Pat Lang Mod -> Stuart Wood , 15 hours ago
Ah, the hostage taking meme.
EdwardAmame -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
Trump says give me X number of $$s for my border wall (thought balloon over his head says "so I can get re-elected") or I shut down the gov't. What's to keep him from doing it again if the Dems cave this time?

On a side note: it's pretty appalling that you and your mostly Cuckoo bird commenters think this is the way the republic should be run. So sad what happened to this blog.

Greco , a day ago
We have Democrats like Sandy Ocasio-Cortez demanding the abolition of ICE. Is that one of so-called improvements to border security the Democrats are seeking with popular backing?

If left to their devices, the Democrats would happily do away with the border altogether. Don't take my word for it. Take the words of the two-time failed Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. She gave a paid, private speech in Brazil where she claimed, "My dream is a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders, some time in the future with energy that is as green and sustainable as we can get it, powering growth and opportunity for every person in the hemisphere." That's all fine and dandy, I'm sure, but oddly she didn't make that proclamation publicly on the campaign trail.

EdwardAmame -> Greco , 6 hours ago
You are so full of shit. Dems want borders and they want border security based on real experience, not a mnemonic device dreamed up by Roger Stone to focus candidate Trump on immigration issues.
Stuart Wood , a day ago
I think you are putting words in Pelosi's and the democrats mouths. I have heard of none of them espousing getting rid of the border barriers. I believe they view a wall as a dumb idea but are for other improvements for border security. This, I believe, is what the majority of the populace want.
Pat Lang Mod -> Stuart Wood , 15 hours ago
Pelosi and any number of other leading Dems have said that border barriers are immoral. The logical conclusion from those statements is that ALL border barriers are immoral. If that is their position then they should advocate removal of existing barriers. If they do not, then they are politically self serving liars.
EdwardAmame -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
Bullshit. She said Trump's wall is immoral. My take is that what is immoral referred to using a gov't shutdown to get it.
Stuart Wood -> Pat Lang , 13 hours ago
No. Pelosi said the wall was immoral.
Pat Lang Mod -> Stuart Wood , 11 hours ago
She made it clear that she thinks all barriers are immoral and does not differetiate between the two. Ask her.
mike2000917 -> Stuart Wood , a day ago
The walls in place currently are highly effective. Five billion would put more walls in areas focusing illegal crossers into smaller zones.

The Democrats are all but endorsing open borders. Whether it's just to thwart Trump or if they actually want no borders, the affect is the same.

EdwardAmame -> mike2000917 , 6 hours ago
Tell that to the angry ranchers along the southern Texas borders who think trump's wall is a political stunt that will ruin them economically.

There is no illegal alien southern border crisis in 2019 -- and the migrant caravan that had so many republicans freaked out ultimately wound up in Tijuana, across the wall from San Diego. Because that's where migrant families wind up, at official points of entry so they can apply for asylum.

Pat Lang Mod -> mike2000917 , 15 hours ago
Thank you for your support. Now, tell the Democrat leaders that!
Pat Lang Mod -> Stuart Wood , a day ago
They should be asked.
Britam -> Pat Lang , a day ago
The problem with the idea of banks building 'good will' is that the financial sector, by and large, has moved on from old fashioned business models to an 'enrich the insiders at everyone else's expense' model.
My local bank that I use has signs in the lobby directing workers discommoded by the shutdown to apply at the small loan desk. I do not know what incentives are on offer, but my unpleasant experience with the bank once before does not give me much hope of the bank acting altruistically.
William K Black, who headed part of the Federal response to the 'Savings and Loan' crisis in the 1980's has called this trend the building of a "criminogenic environment."
As for the wall fiasco, I would ask Chuck and Nancy; "Who do you consider as being Americans?" Then tell them to serve that group, no one else. The last time I looked, no one had abolished the Nation State.
Thank you for your indulgence.
Barbara Ann -> Britam , 14 hours ago
But that is exactly the problem; global corporations and their lobbyists are doing their utmost to abolish the Nation State. Nation states are a PITA, from the Globalist POV. They make regulations, have borders impeding the rampant denuding of talent pools and worst of all occasionally erect trade barriers to favor their domestic industries. All of this is harmful to the corporate profits of a global business. What we are witnessing in the US and elsewhere is the push back against this drive to maximize profits at the cost of huge sections of national populations.

Trump may be a billionaire businessman with worldwide interests, but real estate is different. It employs largely local labor and is not vulnerable to 'protectionist' government policies in the same way. This is key to understanding how a billionaire like Trump can think and act so differently to the Davos club and billionaires like Bezos.

Mrm Penumathy -> Barbara Ann , 13 hours ago
Totally agree with you. What I can't understand about these politicians from the democratic party or for that matter the main stream media is if we are so internationalized then why all the this drum beating about Russia Russia since we a re all a part of the nice international group of people. Don't they have as much stake who governs in this international brotherhood?
Pat Lang Mod -> Britam , 15 hours ago
My comment on the good will issue means that I am telling them what they would be wise to do.
Bill H -> Stuart Wood , a day ago
Then that is what they should say, rather than the prattle they are currently issuing. Apparently, unlike me, you completed the mind reading class in high school.
Pat Lang Mod -> Bill H , 15 hours ago
Yes, my mind reading skills are legendary.
Bill H -> Pat Lang , 12 hours ago
My mind reading comment was actually addressed to Stuart Wood for his remark about Pelosi and company that despite their words to the contrary, "I believe they view a wall as a dumb idea but are for other improvements for border security."

[Jan 22, 2019] Study the Maginot Line Before Building Any Walls by Eric Margolis

Notable quotes:
"... A Trump wall or barrier will cost far more than believed and be likely unfinished, with large gaps like the Maginot Line. Some better way of blocking the border must be found. If not, we may end up having to wall and garrison the Canadian border as well. ..."
Jan 22, 2019 |

`Good fences make good neighbors,' wrote American poet Robert Frost. But not according to President Donald Trump whose proposed Great Wall is supposed to protect the nation from hordes of rabid, murderous, drug crazed rapists and unwhites from south of the border.

I'm a life-long student of military architecture, with a particular passion for modern fortification, chief among which is France's own Great Wall, the magnificent and unfairly reviled Maginot Line.

Given the heated debate in America over Trump's proposed barrier along the Mexican border, it's worth looking back to the Maginot Line. It was supposed to have been France's savior after the bloodbath of World War I.

Proposed by Deputy André Maginot in the 1920's, the Line was supposed to cover key parts of France's frontiers with German and Italy. Due to the terrible losses of the Great War, France did not have enough soldiers to properly defend its long frontiers. So it made sense to erect fortifications to compensate for manpower weakness and to block surprise attacks from next door enemy forces.

The first large Maginot fort was built in the 1920's north of Nice to protect the Cote d'Azur from possible Italian attacks. Mussolini was demanding France return the Riviera coast to its former Italian rulers. Work on the principal Line along the German and Luxembourg borders began soon after. Phase one covered 260 miles from near the Rhine to Longuyon, a rail junction south of the Belgian border.

The Line consisted of hundreds of steel and concrete machine gun and anti-tank casemates with interlocking flanking fire. They were surrounded by upright rails designed to halt tanks and dense belts of interwoven barbed wire covered by machine guns. Artillery casemates with 75mm, 81mm and 135mm guns covered the fort's fronts and sides.

Within and behind the Maginot Line were based an army of specialized fortress troops and hundreds of field artillery guns. The era's most advanced electronic communications systems meshed the defenses together. The big forts were mostly buried 90 feet underground, proof from any projectiles of the era.

But the problem was that a wall or barrier is only effective so long as there are adequate troops to man it.

In the spring of 1940, France had deployed nearly a third of its field army behind the Maginot Line. But then the Germans staged a brilliant breakthrough north of the Line across the supposedly impenetrable Ardennes forest region. In 1938, a French parliamentarian named Perrier (from the French water family) had toured the Ardennes area and warned the military that it was very vulnerable to a German breakthrough. The generals scoffed at 'this civilian' and ignored Perrier's warning.

Sure enough, the German armored and infantry assault came right through this Ardennes weak point near Sedan, forcing a rapid retreat by French and British forces in the region that ended up at Dunkerque.


As outflanked Allied forces pulled back from the frontier, they exposed the northern flank of the Maginot Line. The French high command, fearing their armies around the Line would be encircled, ordered the interval forces to retreat towards the highlands of central France. The Line was thus denuded of its troops and artillery. These units, who were armed and trained for static defense, had to make their way cross country on foot. Most were captured en route by advancing German forces.

In spring 1940 the Line was unfinished with large gaps and open flanks due to budgetary constraints caused by the 1930's depression. The Germans drove through them, wisely avoiding most of big forts, and attacked the Line from the rear. Ironically, in 1944/45, German troops ended up defending the Maginot Forts from the advancing US Army.

The Line worked as planned, protecting vulnerable areas. But it was never extended to the Channel due to Belgium's high water table and reluctance to fortify behind the French ally. The Belgians believed their powerful forts near Liege would delay the Germans until the French Army could intervene. They were wrong.

The French public ascribed almost magical powers to the Line. It would keep them invulnerable they believed. Building the fortifications became a national works project during the Depression, rather like the US WPA labor program. But Adolf Hitler vowed he would go around the Line and chop it up. He did.

A Trump wall or barrier will cost far more than believed and be likely unfinished, with large gaps like the Maginot Line. Some better way of blocking the border must be found. If not, we may end up having to wall and garrison the Canadian border as well.

Rational , says: January 20, 2019 at 12:53 am GMT


Sir, you make an interesting point, but the comparison is not valid.

In the Maginot line case, France was being attacked by other COUNTRIES, i.e. govt. of other countries, with tanks and soldiers.

But, the US is being attacked by individuals, these criminal alien invaders. The Mexican govt. is not trying to invade us with troops and tanks; only the individuals with nothing but a big mouth.

Carlton Meyer , says: Website January 20, 2019 at 12:56 am GMT
This is a horrible analogy and the author knows it. He is correct, Trump's border wall would not withstand an attack by thousands of German troops with tanks. There is no mention of walls in Israel that no illegal immigrant can cross, nor the South Korean DMZ. Border security makes sense and is a tiny fraction of the huge budget our Department of Defense spends to protect the borders of our allies. Opponents are just naive or covert open borders globalists.

We don't needs a wall (or high barriers) along 90% of the border because those areas are too far from road access on Mexican side, nor do we need them along 99% of the Canadian border. One can visit the border or just look at youtube and see that we really need a first class barrier along 10% of the Mexican border. This will deter chaos in the easily accessible areas by replacing an assortment of old fences wobbly that even moms with kids can hop over.

anon1 , says: January 20, 2019 at 1:02 am GMT
Okay Mr., Margolis ..

What is YOUR solution to the problem of America's border with Mexico and controlling illegal immigration?

How diverse is the neighborhood you live in? How many unwhites live on your street?

Carlton Meyer , says: Website January 20, 2019 at 1:33 am GMT
I challenge Mr Margolis to cite just one incident where an illegal immigrant penetrated the Maginot Line. Otherwise, he should apologize for wasting our time with this horrible article. If he wants to discuss alternatives, like requiring e-verify, let's hear them.

How about self-funding border security. We all pay a TSA fee for every flight for security. Why not charge $10 to cross the border by foot, or $20 per vehicle. Many American bridges have hefty fees to cross, why not the border?

Alistair , says: January 20, 2019 at 2:06 am GMT
No wall is strong enough to protect against desperate people who flee from extreme violence and poverty; yet these people are NOT an invading army but broken families; single mothers with small kids who only seek peace and security for their children.

The problem of mass migration is not new; but the US leadership had always dealt with it with foresight which is lacking in the Trump Administration. America wouldn't have the problem of mass migration had the US fulfilled its own role as the world Superpower – so, dealing with the Latin America as the neighbours who need help to restore themselves to functioning states as opposed to walling them in their desperation.

Back in 1994, the Peso Crisis would have paralyzed Mexico as a functioning state but Bill Clinton administration had recognized that the US must help Mexican government from total collapse which would have resulted to flood of poor migrants to the southern borders of the USA – as such, under the leadership of president Bill Clinton, the US, Canada and IMF had structured a bailout loan-package to help the Mexican government to keep its economy afloat, that has not only prevented the mass migration of poor Mexicans workers to the southern borders of the USA but also helped the US exports to Mexico, so, helped the American economy as well.

We need similar approach to the rest of the Latin America, we need to help these countries to sustain and restore themselves to functioning states with relative security for families; because no wall is strong enough to protect against total desperation.

Giuseppe , says: January 20, 2019 at 3:38 am GMT
The wall will not be effective because illegal immigration from Mexico and Central America constitutes 5% or less of all immigration, see Ron Unz's recent article on the subject. The real problem is legal immigration: anchor babies, diversity lottery visa, H1-B visa, chain immigration, etc. The real problem is US immigration law, not lack of a physical barrier to illegal immigration. If a wall worked 100% of the time (it won't) you still would have 20 times the numbers in *legal immigration* that would continue to fail to be addressed. The Wall is a sop tossed to the masses by pandering politicians who don't have the will to address the overarching problem of legal immigration. General George Patton summed up the Maginot line pretty well, and it applies to the Wall: "Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
Svigor , says: January 20, 2019 at 5:38 am GMT
@Alistair All the left has to do is 1) disguise their invading army as refugees 2) play the fiddle constantly, shout "they're refugees!"

When they're fighting morons, anyway. No serious people would fall for this scheisse.

Svigor , says: January 20, 2019 at 5:42 am GMT
@Giuseppe The wall will be effective: at proving that America is actually capable of stopping immigration flow. Can't do something as simple and straightforward as building the wall, can't enforce immigration law.
The Alarmist , says: January 20, 2019 at 6:32 am GMT
The key point is that the Germans went around the Maginot Line: The wall itself worked.

My chateau is near Sedan; lovely wooded hilly place, and one would be forgiven for thinking an armoured assault through the Ardennes would surely fail, so why waste resources there? I hear the same sort of blather about parts of the US southern border.

peterAUS , says: January 21, 2019 at 12:02 am GMT
@Carlton Meyer

This is a horrible analogy and the author knows it.


There is no mention of walls in Israel that no illegal immigrant can cross, nor the South Korean DMZ.

Yep. Especially the former.

All Trump has to do, re the wall is implement Israeli solution . Gander, goose.

As for the illegal immigration, also simple: JAIL the business owners who employ them; including one member of a household where an illegal is employed.

As for legal immigration, well one step at the time.

All this bullshit about this topic is truly funny. Funny how retards get hooked on it. Not people with agendas, oh they know what they are doing. But an average Joe getting so excited about the topic.
No wonder we are where we are.

I guess that's one of the usual "gullibility" games TPTBs play with the "deplorables". And win, obviously.

Anon [272] Disclaimer , says: January 21, 2019 at 1:15 am GMT
So Mexicans are going to go by boat caravans to Canada, which is going to let that happen, and then the caravans will cross the U.S.-Canadian border?

As far as Nazis in tanks coming in from Mexico, that's O.K. with me. The more Nazi soldiers, the better. Just keeping out the hordes of unskilled poor is enough.

Hail , says: Website January 21, 2019 at 1:27 am GMT
@Carlton Meyer

I challenge Mr Margolis to cite just one incident where an illegal immigrant penetrated the Maginot Line


Even keeping the problematic, apples-to-oranges migration-to-military analogy, consider this letter-to-editor in a Maryland local newspaper published Jan. 14, 2019:

The Maginot Line worked; it forced the Germans to attack elsewhere. Defeat could have been prevented, but the French failed to fully understand what a successful deterrent their wall was. France built the Maginot Line on the border between France and Germany from Switzerland to Belgium.

For political reasons (they didn't want to "offend" King Leopold) they stopped at Belgium instead of extending it to the North Sea. The French relied on the Dyle River and the Ardennes in Belgium to stop the Germans. Not extending the wall to the North Sea was the Maginot Line's Achilles Heel and caused the French defeat.

Sound familiar?

Grace Poole , says: January 21, 2019 at 3:18 am GMT

At the outbreak of war France's border was protected by the impregnable Maginot Line. Belgium, demonstrating "The Triumph of Hope over experience," had declared itself neutral and forbade the extension of the Line along its border. This meant that an attack on France would come via Belgium.

The Allied plan, Plan D, was to advance into Belgium and there, because of overall superiority, defeat the Germans. [Isaac Leslie Hore-Belisha, Jewish British Secretary of State for War], far from happy with this Plan, wanted the original defence system strengthened. This was to be done by building 240 pillboxes (small forts).

The Army told him it would take 3 weeks to construct a pillbox. Belisha ascertained that it would take 3 days. Accordingly he brought to France a team of Civil Engineers to do this. Unfortunately the Army resented them and gave minimal co-operation.

Belisha now visited France, and attended a meeting of senior officers, which included the commander of the British force, Lord Gort.

A shocked Belisha found that the 1st item on the agenda was "Over which shoulder should a soldier carry his steel helmet when it was not on his head?" He also found that only 2 pillboxes had been constructed.

On his return he reported the situation to the Army Council, and informed the Prime Minister who said that if he wanted to sack Lord Gort he would support him. Belisha refused to do this. Instead he sent General Packenham Walsh to convey to Lord Gort the Army Council's disquiet at the state of his defences.

In doing this Belisha had committed a breach of etiquette. An officer can only be reprimanded by a senior. Packenham Walsh was junior to Lord Gort.

This faux pas increased the already deep hostility to Belisha to a blinding rage. Lord Gort referred to him as Belli; His Chief of Staff General Sir Henry Pownell now referred to him as a "Shallow brained, charlatan, political Jew boy". Michael Foot, later to become leader of the Labour party thought of him as "a shit". Chips Chanon a prominent socialite referred to him as "An Oily Jew".

An army song went:

"Onward Christian Soldiers,
You have nothing to fear
Israel Hore-Belisha will lead you from the rear,
Clothed by Monty Burton
Fed on Lyons Pies
Die for Jewish freedom
As a Briton always dies.
Other officers were referring to him as Horeb Elisha.

Aware of this viscous attitude the Chief of the Imperial General Staff visited France. On his return he supported the Armies attitude, and reported to the King who called in the Prime minister. On January 4th 1940 Belisha was sacked.

On May 10th the Germans attacked through Belgium, and the British Army following plan D advanced to combat the enemy. They were then completely out flanked

Oleaginous Outrager , says: January 21, 2019 at 12:26 pm GMT
But the problem was that a wall or barrier is only effective so long as there are adequate troops to man it.

True, but this has absolutely nothing to do with the failure of the Allies to stop the German invasion. By the way something, which part of the US's southern border is playing Belgium in this rather dubious comparison?

Joe Stalin , says: January 21, 2019 at 6:28 pm GMT
@Rational The Kaiser didn't use 1,000 volts, he used 2,000 volts for his electric fence:

The Hun used a stand alone 2,000 volt power generation plant for their fence. Widespread electric power in the USA means we could use 1:2 step down power transformers for an electrified fence.

Did the Kaiser's fence work as planned?

"As Germany invaded neutral Belgium, Belgians began to cross the border to the Netherlands en masse. In 1914 one million Belgian refugees were already in the Netherlands, but throughout the war, refugees kept coming and tried to cross the border. Many wanted to escape German occupation, others wanted to join their relatives who had already fled, and some wanted to take part in the war and chose this detour to join the forces on the allied front.

"Construction began in the spring of 1915 and consisted of over 200 km (125 mi) of 2,000-volt wire with a height ranging from 1.5 to about 3 m (5 to about 10 ft) spanning the length of the Dutch-Belgian border from Aix-la-Chapelle to the River Scheldt. Within 100–500 m (110–550 yd) of the wire, anyone who was not able to officially explain their presence was summarily executed.

"The number of victims is estimated to range between 2,000 and 3,000 people. Local newspapers in the Southern Netherlands carried almost daily reports about people who were 'lightninged to death'.

"The wire also separated families and friends as the Dutch–Belgian border where Dutch and Flemings (Dutch-speaking Belgians), despite living in different states, often intermarried or otherwise socialized with each other. Funeral processions used to walk to the fence and halt there, to give relatives and friends on the other side the opportunity to pray and say farewell.[3]

The Anti-Gnostic , says: Website January 21, 2019 at 6:36 pm GMT
@Marat It's hard to shrink the State when it can continually import new constituents.
Colin Wright , says: Website January 21, 2019 at 9:35 pm GMT
@Gordo ' Actually I agree a wall is not needed, it is willpower that is needed. Without that a wall is useless, with it a wall is superfluous '

The wall has become a symbol -- as walls tend to be.

It's now secondary whether it actually stops anyone. If we build it, we have decided to retake control of our borders. If we don't, we have abdicated that control.

[Jan 22, 2019] A Tale of Two Walls by Philip Giraldi

Jan 22, 2019 |

The demand of President Donald Trump that congress should appropriate money to build a wall securing the nation's southern border has resulted in the longest federal government shutdown in history with no end in sight. There is considerable opposition to the wall based on two quite different perceptions of border security. The generally "progressive" view is that there is no border threat at all, that the thousands of migrants heading for the U.S. can be assimilated and indeed should be allowed entry because of U.S. government policies in Central America that have created the ruined states that the would-be immigrants have been fleeing.

There is certainly some truth to that argument, though it suggests that the United States should essentially abandon sovereignty over its own territory, which most Americans would reject. The alternative viewpoint, which has a much broader bipartisan constituency, consists of those who do feel that border security is a national priority but are nevertheless critical of building a wall, which will be expensive, possibly ineffective and environmentally damaging. They prefer other options, to include increased spending on the border guards, more aggressive enforcement against existing illegals and severe punishment of businesses in the U.S. that hire anyone not possessing legal documentation. Some also have argued in favor of a national ID issued only to citizens or legal permanent residents that would have to be produced by anyone seeking employment or government services.

Whether the wall will ever be built is questionable, but one thing that is certain is that there is more than enough hypocrisy regarding it to go around. Democratic Presidents including Bill Clinton and Barack Obama when campaigning have called for better border security, as have Democratic Congressional leaders who are now smelling blood and attacking Trump for seeking to do what they have long at least theoretically sought.

Apart from that, many of the Democrats who are currently criticizing the southern border wall on moral grounds have failed to apply the same standard to another infamous wall, that which is being built by Israel. Israel's "separation wall" is arguably being constructed at least in part using "aid" and charitable money provided by Washington while also being enabled politically by the U.S. government's acquiescence to the Israeli violations of international law. And if the moral argument for not having a wall to aid suffering refugees has any meaning, it would be many times more so applied to the Israeli wall, which is an instrument in the maintenance of apartheid in areas under Israeli control while also making permanent the stateless status of the more than one million Palestinian refugees, far more in number than the would-be immigrants marching through Mexico.

The Israeli wall is at many points larger and more intimidating than that planned by Trump, and it is also designed to physically and economically devastate the Palestinian population adjacent to it. Israel's wall is undeniably far more damaging than anything being considered for placement along the U.S.-Mexican border as it operates as both a security measure and a tool for confiscating more Arab land by including inside the barrier illegal West Bank settlements.

There are both physical similarities and differences relating to the two walls. Judging from prototypes, Trump currently appears to favor prefabricated mostly metal sections with barbed wire coils on top that would be high and intimidating enough to deter climbing over. The sections would be set in foundations sufficiently deep to deter most tunneling and there would be sensors at intervals to alert guards to other attempts to penetrate the barrier. Israel's wall varies in terms of structural material, including large concrete blocks 28 feet high in some areas while other less populated stretches that are considered low security make do with multiple lines of barbed wire and sensors. It is interesting to note that some Israeli companies have apparently expressed interest in building the Mexico wall and, as one of the many perks Israel receives from congress includes the right to bid on U.S. government contracts, they might well wind up as a contractors or subcontractors if the barrier is ever actually built.

As noted above, the principal difference between the U.S. wall and that of Israel is that the American version is all on U.S. land and is engineered to more or less run in a straight line along the border. The Israeli version is nearly 90% built on Palestinian land and, as it is designed to create facts on the West Bank, it does not run in a straight line, instead closing off some areas to the Palestinians by surrounding Arab villages. It therefore keeps people in while also keeping people out, so it is not strictly speaking a security barrier. Indeed, some Israeli security experts have stated their belief that the wall has been only a minor asset in preventing violence directed by Palestinians against Israelis.

If the Israeli wall had followed the Green Line that separated Israel proper from Palestinian land it would be only half the estimated 440 miles long that it will now be upon completion. The extra miles are accounted for by the deep cuts of as much as 11 miles into the West Bank, isolating about 9% of it and completely enclosing 25,000 Palestinian Arabs from areas nominally controlled by the Palestinian Authority. One often cited victim of the barrier is the Palestinian town of Qalqilyah, with a population of 45,000, which is enclosed on all sides by a wall that in some sections measures more than 25 feet high. Qalqilyah is only accessible through an Israeli controlled military checkpoint on the main road from the east and a tunnel on the south side that links the town to the adjacent village of Habla.

The wall is therefore only in part a security measure while also being a major element in the Israeli plan to gradually acquire as much of the West Bank as possible – perhaps all of it – for Israeli settlers. It is a form of collective punishment based on religion to make life difficult for local people and eventually drive them from their homes.

The human costs for the Palestinians have consequently been high. A United Nations 2005 report states that :

it is difficult to overstate the humanitarian impact of the Barrier. The route inside the West Bank severs communities, people's access to services, livelihoods and religious and cultural amenities. In addition, plans for the Barrier's exact route and crossing points through it are often not fully revealed until days before construction commences. This has led to considerable anxiety amongst Palestinians about how their future lives will be impacted The land between the Barrier and the Green Line constitutes some of the most fertile in the West Bank. It is currently the home for 49,400 West Bank Palestinians living in 38 villages and towns."

Amnesty International in a 2004 report observed:

"The fence/wall, in its present configuration, violates Israel's obligations under international humanitarian law Since the summer of 2002 the Israeli army has been destroying large areas of Palestinian agricultural land, as well as other properties, to make way for a fence/wall which it is building in the West Bank. In addition to the large areas of particularly fertile Palestinian farmland that have been destroyed, other larger areas have been cut off from the rest of the West Bank by the fence/wall. The fence/wall is not being built between Israel and the Occupied Territories but mostly (close to 90%) inside the West Bank, turning Palestinian towns and villages into isolated enclaves, cutting off communities and families from each other, separating farmers from their land and Palestinians from their places of work, education and health care facilities and other essential services. This in order to facilitate passage between Israel and more than 50 illegal Israeli settlements located in the West Bank. "

Of course, the situation has become far worse for Palestinians since the two reports dating from 2004 and 2005. Israel has accelerated its settlement construction and the wall has expanded and shifted to accommodate those changes, making life impossible for the indigenous population.

Any pushback from the United States has been rare to nonexistent, with successive administrations only occasionally mentioning that the settlements themselves are "troubling" or a "complication" vis-à-vis a peace settlement. The first direct criticism of the wall itself took place in 2003, when the Bush administration briefly considered reducing loan guarantees to discourage its construction. Then Secretary of State Colin Powell remarked "A nation is within its rights to put up a fence if it sees the need for one. However, in the case of the Israeli fence, we are concerned when the fence crosses over onto the land of others."

On May 25, 2005, Bush repeated his concerns , noting that "I think the wall is a problem. And I discussed this with Ariel Sharon. It is very difficult to develop confidence between the Palestinians and Israel with a wall snaking through the West Bank." In a letter to Sharon he stated that it "should be a security rather than political barrier, should be temporary rather than permanent and therefore not prejudice any final status issues including final borders, and its route should take into account, consistent with security needs, its impact on Palestinians not engaged in terrorist activities."

Congress is, of course, Israeli occupied territory so its response was directed against Powell and Bush in support of anything Israel chose to do. Then Senator Joe Lieberman complained "The administration's threat to cut aid to Israel unless it stops construction of a security fence is a heavy-handed tactic. The Israeli people have the right to defend themselves from terrorism, and a security fence may be necessary to achieve this."

In 2005, Senator Hillary Clinton declared her support for the wall by claiming that the Palestinian Authority had failed to fight terrorism. "This is not against the Palestinian people. This is against the terrorists. The Palestinian people have to help to prevent terrorism. They have to change the attitudes about terrorism." Senator Charles Schumer, also from New York, added "As long as the Palestinians send terrorists onto school buses and to nightclubs to blow up people, Israel has no choice but to build the Security Wall."

So, for many in Washington a legal and relatively apolitical wall by the United States to protect its border is a horrible prospect while the Israeli version built on someone else's land with the intention to damage the local Arab population as much as possible is perfectly fine. The reality is that America's Establishment, which is dominated by veneration of Israel for a number of reasons, is completely hypocritical, more prepared to criticize actions taken by the United States even when those actions are justified than they are to condemn Israeli actions that amount to crimes against humanity. That is the reality and it is playing out in front of us right now.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is .

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