President Trump administration’s mobilisation constitutes the militarisation of American borders to curb the 'invasion' of all migrants.
President Trump has termed the arrival of central American migrants as “an invasion” and so on Monday, Homeland security and Pentagon officials stated that they will be sending over 5,200 military helicopter squads and a giant cylinder of razor wire to the Mexican border to brace the same.
The deployment of the helicopters corresponds with a consequential militarisation of American border security before the US midterm election on November 6. This seems to be the biggest US Active-duty mobilisation over the America-Mexican boundary in years.
On Monday, Air Force General Terrence J O’Shaughnessy, the chief of US Northern Command, stated that the operation aka 'Operation Faithful Project' is already afoot. He added that they will be focusing primarily on “hardening” the border in Texas and then Arizona and California. The military will also be working with the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
Air Force General said that the crusade will include three combat engineer battalions, officials of US Army Corps of Engineers and crews specialised in aviation, medical treatment, and logistics. Black Hawk helicopters deployed facilitates night-vision and sensors. They will also have squads trained in aerial combat missions in active war zones used by the military.
Top US border security official, Kevin K McAleenan asserted that the deployment is not influenced by electoral politics, but was a law enforcement necessity as US agents believe that there exists a possibility of migrants being a stockpile and reckless.
McAleenan added that the agency has tracked a cavalcade of about 3,500 going north through southern Mexico arriving not later than October 30. Another group of about 3,000 encountered the Mexican police over the weekend and at least one man was killed as police fired rubber bullets and tear gas.
“We are preparing for the contingency of large groups of persons arriving in the next several weeks,” he claimed, “We will not allow a large group to enter the United States in an unsafe and unlawful manner.”
The Homeland Security acknowledged that the site of migrants perforating through the gates of Guatemala border was alarming and that such a large crowd can cause potential challenges to the US border agents and customs officers.
McAleenan added, “We’re already facing border security and humanitarian crisis.” He further said that the US agents have arrested an average of 1,900 migrants crossing the border without authorisation and more than half of the migrants are parents with children or minors.
Immigrant advocacy groups and the American Civil Liberties Union accursed the deployment adding that the migrants have the rights to seek refuge in the US under the international and federal laws and that they are escaping violence in their own land and are looking for a better life.
“These migrants need water, diapers and basic necessities — not an army division,” Shaw Drake, policy counsel for the ACLU’s Border Rights Center in El Paso stated, adding that the deployment is a waste of taxpayer's money and that it will terrorise border communities.
According to the Pentagon document incurred by The Washington Post, the deployment of military police had begun on Monday and will be continuing till the end of the week. The Homeland security has also requested the defence to help the CBP as it will contribute to the complete task of border security missions.
O’Shaughnessy stated that the officials at the border will follow the Posse Comitatus Act, which prevents the US troops from taking a direct role in law enforcement missions.
O’Shaughnessy mentioned that the Pentagon will deploy military police units and cargo aircraft, constituting three C-130s and one C-17. Joined command posts will be established to connect US military and CBP. 22 miles of razor wires have already been sent to the 1,954-mile-long border and have wire left for over for 150 miles.
Trump will do what “he deems necessary” on immigration, Sarah Sanders, white house press secretary, said.
The White House has put immense pressure on the Mexican government to block the cavalcade’s advance. The group has decreased to nearly 7,000 migrants, as some footsore travellers and parents with children have fallen behind. At least 1,000 cavalcade members have applied for refuge in Mexico, authorities say.
On Monday, Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexican President, proposed to offer temporary work permits, medical care and other benefits to migrants if they agree to register with authorities and remain in the Mexican states of Chiapas and Oaxaca, but this was rejected by the Honduran migrants and they continued heading north.
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Last Updated Oct 30, 2018, 2:19 PM IST