Katie Hèbert, Staff Writer|
Recently, President Trump has sent American troops down to the U.S.-Mexico Border, furthering his anti-immigration efforts.
Trump has said that this decision to send troops down to the southwest “will protect Americans from a caravan of migrants coming from Central America.” Trump has also suggested that there will be “Islamic terrorists” in the caravan, yet no evidence proves his claim of any intended harm from people of Muslim or Latinx identities.
On October 29, Trump tweeted: “Many Gang Members and some very bad people are mixed into the Caravan heading to our Southern Border. Please go back, you will not be admitted into the United States unless you go through the legal process. This is an invasion of our Country and our Military is waiting for you!”
Todd Harrison, the Director of Defense Budget Analysis with the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, who also analyzes the budgets and finances of the Pentagon, criticized this decision, noting that it weakens the national security of the country as a whole: “You’ve got 5,000 troops that are trained and ready, and we’re using them for something other than their intended mission. When they get back, they will have not been doing their normal training, and won’t be ready if something happens.”
On top of this newly redirected focus, the mission to send troops to the southern border will be costly. People are comparing this to the 2006 deployment to the border of the Bush administration, it would cost about $35 million now for Trump’s plan. Helene Cooper and Thomas Gibbons-Neff also write that this would drain many resources,: “Quickly sending more than 5,200 troops, their vehicles and equipment to the southwest border is no easy task and will require a small fleet of aircraft to accomplish effectively. That means transportation jets and other aircraft will have to be repurposed from other assignments.” Proving that this is a waste of time, money, energy, and resources, there is a chance that troops will not even be carrying out the job of intention, due to the caravan’s late anticipation. Aside from being incredibly problematic, it is a waste of national and political resoureces.
As of November 6, U.S. troops which are stationed in Granjeno, Texas, which is located on the U.S.-Mexico border, are putting razor wire on fencing on the bridge that connects the two countries. Air Force General, Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, says that this wire work would “harden the points of entry and address key gaps.”
President Trump has recently addressed plans to revoke DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), take away other protections from undocumented people in the states, and increase deportation with the use of ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement).