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Big Surprise! “Virtual” Border Fence Not Working

Big Surprise! “Virtual” Border Fence Not Working

I know you will all be surprised to learn that the “Virtual Fence” along the Southern border is simply not working.

PHOENIX (AP) – An ambitious, $6.7 billion government project to secure nearly the entire Mexican border with a “virtual fence” of cameras, ground sensors and radar is in jeopardy after a string of technical glitches and delays.

Having spent $672 million so far with little to show for it, Washington has ordered a reassessment of the whole idea. The outlook became gloomier this week when President Barack Obama proposed cutting $189 million from the venture.

Ultimately, the project could be scaled back dramatically, with the government installing virtual fences along a few segments of the nation’s 2,000-mile southern boundary but dropping plans for any further expansion, officials said.

“The worst that happens is that we have a system which gives us some value but we conclude that it’s not worth buying any more of it,” said Mark Borkowski, the government’s director of the project at U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Here in America, we get government contracts, budget over-runs, cool high-tech cameras and many press conferences and photo-ops.  And years later, we are stuck with a system that does not work.

Too bad we aren’t as smart as Israel.  They know how to build a fence.west-bank-fence

According to the reports, we have spent $670 million dollars to end up with another government project that doesn’t work.  Israel has projected their fence costs at $3.5 million per mile.  My calculator says we would have gotten 191 miles of Israeli-style fence for that same $670 million.  I haven’t seen all the stats, but I bet that Israeli fence works really, really well.

Via BreitBart.


Comments

  1. Yeah, too bad we can’t utilize Israel’s fence-building ability. Maybe then we’d have Israel’s super-awesome problems too!

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/feb/03/barak-apartheid-palestine-peace

    And then all would be well, just like in Israel!

    How ’bout rolling back the drug war and instituting real immigration reform – you know, stuff that might actually work – then creating a DMZ between two Democratic nations?

  2. Wow Klute, what great logic.
    If I follow your logic correctly, then the entire Mexican nation would turn into a bunch of suicidal, bomb-wearing, jihadists sworn to blow the Zionist nation into tiny tiny bits. Do I have it right?

    Also, you imply that the problems in the Middle East is somehow Israel’s fault. Didn’t know you hated Israel that much.

  3. “If I follow your logic correctly, then the entire Mexican nation would turn into a bunch of suicidal, bomb-wearing, jihadists sworn to blow the Zionist nation into tiny tiny bits. Do I have it right?”

    No, what I’m suggesting is that Israel’s wall has NOT solved their problems with security (nor am I suggesting that Palestine is what you’ve stereotyped them as…) and an Israel-style fence won’t suggest America’s security/immigration issues.

    “Also, you imply that the problems in the Middle East is somehow Israel’s fault. Didn’t know you hated Israel that much.”

    What’s the old Limbaugh trope? Liberals calling a conservative a racist means they’re losing the argument? I think we can apply that here: calling a liberal an anti-semite means a conservative is losing the argument – because I never suggested Israel was the fault of all the Middle East problems.

  4. Klute,

    Its very hard to argue with the fact that suicide bombings have stopped since Israel built the wall. It has worked.

    In the US there is not the worry of lobbing rockets across the border (like what has gone on in Gaza) so I think its hard to argue that building a wall is not a good idea for the US. To argue that building a wall will make the US just like Israel is pretty dumb and ignorant considering the regions history.

    I wont even get into it with you on Israel because its clear where you stand on that.

  5. er, “suggest America’s security/immigration issues.”

    suggest=solve

  6. So, by your logic, are people who support “virtual border fence” technology not serious about securing the border?

  7. Johnny,

    “In the US there is not the worry of lobbing rockets across the border (like what has gone on in Gaza) so I think its hard to argue that building a wall is not a good idea for the US.”

    No, there’s just the worry of cross-border violence, which last I checked was part of JD Hayworth’s raison d’etre (see: tank picture). The minute it becomes profitable for the Cartels to engage in open warfare with the US, then it starts happening. We already know they have the firepower to do this. They’ve already attacked Americans.

    So, rather than walling ourselves up, we could do the things that might actually work – as I metioned, scaling back the drug war and instituting immigration reform.

    “I wont even get into it with you on Israel because its clear where you stand on that.”

    Oh, do tell. You don’t have a clue where I stand on Israel.

  8. Klute,

    citing the Gaurdian a UK website that is notoriously anti-Israel says a lot to me. Now I could be wrong and it is just a link you used. But that to me told me a lot.

    I am not saying you have made any anti-israel comments. That link just seemed telling to me. I would love to be wrong.

  9. Because that was the first Western news source where the Ehud Barak story came up (knowing that if quoted Al Jazeera, etc.) I doubt anyone would have read it.

    “I would love to be wrong.”

    Then its your lucky day. I support Israel’s right to exist, and I support their right to defense, even preemptive defense (such as the Osiraq bombing), against attacks both external and internal.

    I DON’T support everything they do,such as the attack on the USS Liberty (as one of the commentators on here mentioned), or, more recently, the use of white phosphorus on the UN compound.

    I’m also in favor of a seperate Palestinian state, but that Hamas can’t be in control of it, nor can any puppet of Syria or Iran. Which, you know, was being worked on, until W foisted elections on Fatah and gave the reigns of power over to Hamas.

  10. Klute,

    We basically have the same position on Israel. I am sorry my other statements and apologize. I unlike many of the people on this blog I have no problem with being wrong and admitting it 🙂

  11. Johnny,

    No worries – thanks for hearing me out. 🙂

  12. Is the problem that it doesn’t work, or that it’s incomplete and might not be finished? In either case, federal spending for this sort of project may provide a significant benefit for Arizona’s hard-hit construction industry, granting greater benefits to the state than the wall itself might provide.

  13. Tom,

    “…federal spending for this sort of project may provide a significant benefit for Arizona’s hard-hit construction industry, granting greater benefits to the state than the wall itself might provide.”

    That solution sounds suspiciously like Roosevelt’s WPA.

  14. I really don’t think Mexico and the United State are comparable to Israel and Palestine besides the fact that they are both sunny. Mexicans want to come work in the United States…not blow it up

  15. Actually the Israeli fence is not about stopping suicide bombers but is geared towards being able to shut down the entire flow of Palestinians into Israel if they wish.

    Of course the real reason the US fence has costs so much is because in the US they have to actually buy much of the land from private property owners rather than simply appropriate it from illegally held territory. Oh, and much of the fence has been built by private contractors at a significantly higher cost per mile than when done by the Border Patrol or military, according to a 2008 GAO report.

  16. Todd, you might want to check the facts on Israel.

    Construction started on the seperation fence in 2002. This is what has happened since then… I cannot find 2008 and 2009 numbers. But as someone who follows things closely in Israel I can tell you it is around the 2006 and 2007 numbers.

    http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Terrorism-+Obstacle+to+Peace/Palestinian+terror+since+2000/Suicide+and+Other+Bombing+Attacks+in+Israel+Since.htm

  17. To Tom:
    federal spending for this sort of project may provide a significant benefit for Arizona’s hard-hit construction industry, granting greater benefits to the state than the wall itself might provide

    Dude, where do you think the Feds get the money from in the first place? It comes from Johnny and Klute and Todd and Um and me, and yes, you too.

  18. johnny – didn’t say bombings had not gone down.

    Interestingly according to Shin Bet the reason for the decrease had largely to do with the truce after the second antifada and withdrawal from parts of Gaza strip as well as assassinations of Palestinian terrorist leaders.

  19. kralmajales says

    This virtual wall…and the more solid one…are Bull$#@%. Talk about a massive waste of taxpayer money.

    PERIOD.

  20. The Israelis have greatly protected thir restaurant/bus-going civilians from suicide bombers since that fence went up. Forcing the transit people thru security checks has captured many bomb-laden terrorists. No one on legitimate business has been abused, just inconvenienced, putting up with it for the jobs and money available on the Israeli side. If Israel is the only problem, how come the EGYPTIANS are trying to keep tunnel-burrowing Gazans out of Egypt – the place of more than one terrorist attack sponsored by the very same types who terrorize Israel.

    The apartheid meme is a favorite of the hard anti-Israel Left and is used constantly in Europe to project European guilt over their frequently nasty colonial periods unto Israel, a tiny place they have tried hard to recast as a colonial power. Just ask the Belgiums, trying to hide from their pasts as the vicious abusers of the African Belgian Congo, the shocking real-world inspiration for Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness.”

    It’s frequently followed by accusations of geonocide, but the growing Muslim populations in the PA areas and Gaza prove the lie of that smear. Meanwhile, Aficans who are or were slaves grumble that the “aparthied talk” is just that, “talk.” They wonder why the LEft continues to ignore their genuine suffering to focus on well-dressed, well-fed people with cell phones and television shows who cry “abused.” If there was a malnourished kid in the PA or Gaza, we’d know it. The kid’d be paraded on the TV incessently to humiliate the Israelis. There aren’t any. They are well-fed and well-vaccinated, well-dressed and go to nice schools with real roofs and walls.

    The so-called “refugee camps” in Israel would make an African in Darfur, in limbo for months and years under a plastic tent eating a daily bowl of fly-dotted porridge, green with envy, perhaps incandescent with fury. They aren’t what they used to be, but now are cities, with water systems, sewer systems, electricity, shops, markets, nice houses, apartments and real schools with desks, teachers, supplies. Homes have televisions, air conditioners, nice rugs, furniture, stoves.
    Those “refugee camps” have more amenities than many far-flung American NATIVE reservations have.

    As far as our Southern border goes, every nation on the planet has a right and a duty to its citizens to control the borders. The current sytsem, left to fester by the majority Democratic-controlled Congress hurts Mexicans who want to work in the USA by keeping them easy targets of ABUSE if they come in ILlegally – used by greedy and unethical employers, abused by coyotes and unable to get help from the law. They should be legalized thru a rational guest worker program, and the restoration of fair enforcement of existing laws. By controlling points of entry TERRORISTS and DRUG TRAFFICKERS who desire to attack Americans can be caught before they can continue.

    It’s a real joke to not have a border fence, but watch daily that expensive LUXURY of a highway SOUND BARRIER WALL go up mile after mile along Phoenix neighborhoods next to the interstates.

    Move those crews and their cement mixers and cement forms down to the border and voila!

  21. wanumba – so in your world if it isn’t as bad as a Sudan refugee camp no one has a legitimate grievance?

    According to the Red Cross, 22% of Palestinian children are malnourished yet you claim none are. It seems to me you have no idea what you are talking about.

    I am well aware of Belgium’s genocide policies in the Congo as I am of many imperial actions which killed millions in European held colonies as well as horrid conditions on our own native reservations. It seems your argument is with some caricature you hold in your head rather than actual existing people.

  22. Rosco P Coltrane says

    Walls built to keep THEM out will also keep US in.

    Do not build a physical wall. Instead, remove the incentives for illegal immigration in the first place.

    But that won’t happen, because our CFR-beholden rulers WANT illegal immigration. It is helping to destroy the fabric of America, which is their goal.

  23. todd Says:
    ……………
    February 4th, 2010 at 5:02 pm
    wanumba – so in your world if it isn’t as bad as a Sudan refugee camp no one has a legitimate grievance?

    According to the Red Cross, 22% of Palestinian children are malnourished yet you claim none are. It seems to me you have no idea what you are talking about.
    ……………………

    Since we’ve worked with actual refugees in abysmal poverty, we’re just not impressed with the theatrical whinging and whining coming out of known uber partisan Terrorist groups with massive and nasty agendas like Hamas, and the likes of the PA run by the odious Yassar Arafat who had been the source of terror attacks against Arab Jordan to try to wreck the King there before he was chased/booted to Berber/Arab Tunisia, then before the disgusted Tunisians were about to run him out, was politically ressurrected by none other than Democrat President Bill Clinton, to soil his new nest as head of the PA where he claimed peace while unleashing terror as a street policy against Israel. Israel had offered him the whole enchilada, but he refused, preferring annilation of the Jews to peace. Mr. Noble Peace Prize.

    The Queen of Jordan is a Palistinian. But Jordan can’t stomach the products of years of indoctrination by Arafat’s hateful culture of death. No one complains that Arab Jordan isn’t doing enough and it’s right next door and way bigger than Israel – the bigger part of the orginal same parcel of land – and could easily absorb Arabs into its Arab culture – if they quit wrecking things.

    Malnourished kids are pure publicity gold for political gain. If they had malnourished kids that they could somehow blame Israel for, they’d be on the front page. They don’t.

    A big chunk of American kids are classified as malnourished. Obesity is indeed a product of “malnutrition.” SO “malnutrition” can be defined as low in certain vitamins, too much carbs, not enough veggies … if politics are involved, the definition gets very flexible.
    Just look at Michelle Obama fussing publically this week about her own daughters’ weights to prove her new point about … um, obesity? HER daughters? Say what? Those two skinny things? They look perfectly normal to everyone, but Michelle just isn’t satisfied.

    Nutrition rehabilitation for severe malnutrition and emergency food aid was my speciality. What’s yours?

  24. Normally, for Muslim regions, that would be the Red Crescent reporting, not the Red Cross, BTW.

    They get really finicky about that, so aid people are very sensitive to the politics of it.

  25. ANd back to the subject of border fence. WIth terrorists and drug traffickers trying to get into the USA, a solid fence works to funnel people through controlled check points. It works.

    It doesn’t mean there is no cross border traffic, it means it’s MONITORED and SUPERVISED, not willy-nilly chasing people hopping thru cactus and backhills trails.

    One must ponder the dangerously absurd siutation. The money is available for walls all round Phoenix and Tuscon for sound barriers along the interstates. They are being extended inexorably every day. Yet PHX is second only to Mexico City for drug-gan-related kidnapping and other crimes. The deadly problems of Mexico have easily moved into the USA because of a wide open border.

  26. Sorry, I my memory was incorrect – I should have referred to USAID not the Red Cross.

    Anyway, the malnutrition definitions used are the standard ones used by the WHO and everyone else. If you want to show otherwise please do, your kneejerk claim that it can’t be true is hardly an argument.

  27. Is is a good time to mention I used to work for USAID?

  28. So, what’s your speciality again?

  29. wanumba, good for you. you can claim to have whatever specialized knowledge you want, problem is you never back it up with any actual verifiable facts. I assume if you had this information you would have presented it already.

  30. ………….
    todd Says:
    February 4th, 2010 at 10:00 pm
    wanumba, good for you. you can claim to have whatever specialized knowledge you want, problem is you never back it up with any actual verifiable facts. I assume if you had this information you would have presented it already.
    ……………….
    Like my observation that the claimed sea levels rise was bunk? Pure bunk, total bunk?

    Little me nobody who just innocently commented that all one had to do was go down to any beach, port or harbor, or private pier to confirm with one’s own eyeballs that the claimed sea level rise was not happening.

    Me against the copious data of the East Anglia Climate Research Unit, the UN, WWF, and … even right here on my desk is FOREIGN AFFAIRS September/October 2009 and their intellectually sonorious unintentionally hilarious and wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong Essays “Copenhagen’s Inconvenient Truth, “The Other Climate Changers” and “The Low-Carbon Diet.”

    What a difference a WEEK and a document-dump into the internet makes! Copenhagen collapsed, the hockey stick graph is pure 100% fraud, the melting glaciers wasn’t even researched, just a student paper with a couple of antedoctal quotes, the peer review turned out to be peer bullied and peer censored, the UN is apologizing … the East coast is under another total storm dump at this moment.
    Nothing like trusting one’s EYES over a COMPUTER print-out.

    And you have dodged the question of how relevent your background is to this, while mine is eminently relevent.

    I’m the one who told ya’ll about Obama’s 2006 US tax-payer-funded victory lap through Kenya and his support of the odious Marxist Odinga, and ya’ll hadn’t heard about it and immediately dismissed it .. until it was confirmed right here on SA by doubting Thomases thru further research that what I said had indeed occurred.

    How about proving to all of us readers that YOU know what you’re talking about?
    What’s your speciality?

    Or would you rather change the subject?

    The thread is supposed to be about a border fence. And how idiotic it is to make all sorts of lame excuses not to have one.

    That’s all rhetorical BTW.

    You already advertized your ignorance of the subject by blithely quoting Red Cross, without knowing how gobsmackingly politically incorrect that would be.
    Another thing you would know, if you did know: Food aid and emergency food aid are fraught with political land mines, and FRAUD, FRAUD FRAUD.

  31. Wanumba – 1) sea levels are rising, this is scientifically proven. I posted links to the data 2) No one claimed Obama did not go on a trip to Kenya. You were wrong on your claims that Odinga was Obama’s cousin and that there was something untoward about the trip even though it was approved by the GOP controlled Senate leadership and the GOP state department.

    I am not trying to argue that I have any special knowledge of any subject, I try to argue from facts and reason. You can claim you have all sorts of specialized knowledge but when it conflicts with the facts as presented publicly by an organization you claimed to have worked for, what are we to believe?

    So I made a slip of memory and said Red Cross instead of USAID, big whoop. I was thinking of the Red CROSS report put out last June which everyone can see here – http://tinyurl.com/yhu328c

    As anyone can see, this is a publication of the Red Cross, which you claim would not be published by the Red Cross. Further evidence you know less than you are letting on.

    If we contacted USAID, would they support your claim that their malnourishment figures are bogus? Are you saying USAID is a fraudulent organization?

    In the end, wanumba, your problem is when the facts don’t fit your viewpoint you just resort to vague accusations about lies or fraud or how we can’t trust the facts for some unspecified reason. Or even better, because while international organizations, science academies, or respected researchers have all come to a certain conclusion, their results are wrong because of some experience you have had. You don’t provide any alternative information or data, just blanket denials of fact. Based on your revisionist claims about what has been ‘proven’ in other disputes with you, I frankly think you have a problem discerning reality from your own fantasy.

    This makes me even less likely to take your flimsy attempts to dispute published information with sketchy claims of personal knowledge.

  32. “…until it was confirmed right here on SA by doubting Thomases thru further research that what I said had indeed occurred.”

    No, what actually happened you said the media didn’t cover it. I simply googled it and presented to show, that your tinfoil hat theories about the media covering up for Obama are just that: tinfoil teabagger pipe dreams.

    Why does the Obama presidency bother you so much, wanumba? Did the voters of this country betray your tenuous grasp on reality?

  33. Ya’ll flatter me too much by focusing on me, who is just a simple soul with two functioning eyeballs, orbs which turned out to be more reliable than the East Anglia Climate Research Unit, the UN and my last issue of the elite FOREIGN AFFAIRS. And cheaper, too.

    Where’re the comments about why the current priority is building massive cement walls for MILES and MILES along I-17 and I-40 to protect Phoenix and Tucson neighborhoods against NOISE, but no wall to protect Phoenix and Tucson, Yuma, Prescott, Flagstaff, Show Low, Kingman … Arizona neighborhoods against TERRORISTS or DRUG GANGS?

    Nothing to say, evidently. It’s worse than idiotic.

  34. Wanumba. the noise barriers are not some optional spending but are legally required from when government purchases the right of way. It is a heck of a lot cheaper to buy right of way and put up noise barriers than it is to buy a 1/4 mile strip of land on each side to buffer neighborhoods from an 8 lane freeway. Your comparison was so senseless I really didn’t think it even warranted comment.

  35. ………………….
    todd Says:
    February 5th, 2010 at 5:53 pm
    Wanumba. the noise barriers are not some optional spending but are legally required from when government purchases the right of way. It is a heck of a lot cheaper to buy right of way and put up noise barriers than it is to buy a 1/4 mile strip of land on each side to buffer neighborhoods from an 8 lane freeway. Your comparison was so senseless I really didn’t think it even warranted comment.
    ……………..
    So, we have the solution!
    “Legally required noise barriers from when the government purchases the right of way” along the US-Mexico border:

    “It is a heck of a lot cheaper to buy right of way and put up noise barriers than it is to buy a 1/4 mile strip of land on each side to buffer neighborhoods from an 8 lane freeway.”
    Replace “8 lane freeway” with “international boundry.”

    All we have to do is move the very same work crews, water tanks, mixers and forms down to the border and start pouring. Artsy designs and everything!

    We have the means, don’t we? Already pre-positioned just a few miles from the problem area. Just lack the WILL or perhaps the COMMON SENSE. And what does it say about the government mentality to “legally require noise barriers” but NOT require a national security BORDER FENCE against terrorists and drug smugglers?

    Bet the cities and state government fought to get those noise barriers in, yet are AWOL for the SAME barrier fence that would keep out far worse than noise.

    Back to the idiocy of backwards priorities.

    So, instead of doing it now while it’s easy, we’ll have to wait for the horrific event that gets the irate public with torches and pitchforks on the steps of the statehouse and City Hall. It’s a true travesty it has to be costly in human terms before politicians are goaded to act.

  36. Oh, and I did not claim Odinga is Obama’s cousin, I simply repeated Odinga’s claim. If you have a problem with that, you should correctly take it up directly with Odinga, he’s the source. Caterwal to him for false advertising, trying to get political points for a blood connection to Obama, who was just a senator at that time, not POTUS.

    And inconveniently, since Obama is of the LUO tribal group, thru Obama, Sr. then they ARE related somewhere down the line. Luo is TRIBAL which is extended FAMILY.

    You take it up with Odinga, not me. I have no qualms with you ripping Odinga’s credibility to shreds. He’s a thuggish, self-identified Marxist with a history of troublemaking, and the US Senator from Illinois Barack Obama had no business squandering American prestige being seen in any venue with him.

    If Obama was with Odinga not because they’re family, then he was with him because he’s a Marxist Obama wanted to support for president of Kenya.
    Oh! Problem! Maybe it DOES look better politically if they are cousins, after all. Family obligations and such.

    It’s very telling ya’ll don’t want to face this, so I don’t mind bringing it up. We saw Obama BEFORE the media cloaked him, ya’ll saw him after. Which one is the real Obama?

    Someone’s wrapped up to blind deaf and dumb in tinfoil, but not us.

  37. Just been one SNAFU after another at the UN climate reporting. First the melting Himalayan glaciers “mistake” now the Netherlands, a low-lying nation which would INSTANTLY notice any sea level rise is complaining about fudged data and reporting:

    http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.8d6e5773c60565dfc6e882b0a8dcbf18.4e1&show_article=1

    Truth seems to be in short supply at WWF, the uber partisan, agenda-driven root source of ALL this so-called “peer-reviewed and yet not” political hackery called, “climate science.”

  38. I notice you keep changing the subject because you keep being shown to be wrong.

  39. Todd, you are right. Wanna start to talk about how the Feds blew $670 million for a virtual fence that doesn’t work?
    Probably not huh?

  40. TODAY the unraveling continues:
    UK’s Telegraph reports they caught IPCC using UNSUBSTANTIATED STUDENT PAPERS and more political partisan agenda climate reports from the root ubiquitous source WWF – prepared by hacks, not climate researchers in any way shape or form:
    No melting Himalayan glaciers, rain forest claims bunk … and on and on and on.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/7177230/New-errors-in-IPCC-climate-change-report.html

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