If this doesn’t prove the need for a wall, I don’t know what will.
The U.S. Border Patrol has discovered 224 underground tunnels used by Mexican cartels for human trafficking and drug smuggling. The Border Tunnel Entry Team, a special division of the Border Patrol, is tasked with infiltrating the extensive tunnel network, and have been dubbed “tunnel rats.” (via ABC News)
Cartels are currently able to smuggle smaller shipments of heroin and cocaine through existing border check points, or by crossing the border illegally, so the tunnels are used for larger shipments. The tunnels are sophisticated — including a rail system, lighting, and ventilation. One tunnel is 70 feet deep and almost 3,000 feet long.
Huge shipments of marijuana are now smuggled underground, since the large quantity and foul odor are easily detected at Border Crossings.
The DEA estimates that these tunnels cost between one and two million dollars to construct and maintain, but they can generate several more millions in illegal profit if they go undetected. Most of the tunnels end up in Arizona or California.
Lance LeNoir, leader of the “tunnel rats” division of the border patrol, says the cartels will “tunnel anywhere they want to. It’s wherever they can get a building on the south side and a building on the north side. Location, Location, Location.”
LeNoir’s team uses ground-penetrating radar and acoustic devices, in addition to classic investigative techniques, to try to find the tunnels. The Border Patrol keeps tabs on warehouses near the border, monitoring for suspicious activity and large piles of dirt.
Once detected, agents must undertake the dangerous task of infiltrating the tunnels to map them. After that, they fill the holes in with concrete. The Department of Homeland Security spends over a million dollars a year just filling the tunnels. The Mexican government attempts to seal the holes, but they claim it is too expensive to fill them with concrete. Smugglers have tapped into “sealed” tunnels at least seven times in recent years.
Thankfully, President Trump is acutely aware of the problem. He has vowed to build a wall along the Mexican border, and has already signed an executive order to spur on construction. President Trump promised during the election that he will “find and dislocate tunnels and keep out criminal cartels.”
The wall will be part of an overall strategy deployed by President Trump to keep the border safe. Aerial surveillance will help detect the smuggling operations along with other advanced technologies. The huge profits being generated by the tunnels ensures that they will continue to be a problem, but we are now equipped with a president who is willing to invest what’s needed into solving the problem.
We need to protect our border in order to protect our country. The border is not just a crossing point for illegal immigrants who plan to abuse our social services — it is used to smuggle in the drugs that destroy our communities. We have a duty to block these cartels to make America safe again.
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