The National Guard deployment to the border is a sham



Remember when President Trump's supporters were outraged when Trump signed a budget which prevented him from building a border wall? Trump was so stung by the criticism that he decided to show he was tough on border security by sending the National Guard to the border. The only problem is, restrictions on the Guard has made their participation almost useless.

A month after President Trump called for sending National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border, the head of the national Border Patrol union called the deployment "a colossal waste of resources."

"We have seen no benefit," said Brandon Judd, president of the union that represents 15,000 agents, the National Border Patrol Council.

Agent Chris Cabrera, a spokesman for the union in the Rio Grande Valley, said troops are stationed far from the border, duplicating rather than lessening agents' workload.

Also, while remote, unfenced stretches of the Rio Grande west of McAllen, Texas, frequented by drug smugglers go unguarded, he said, troops weld gates and fix roads, jobs he described as "busy work."

"It's a far cry from the last deployment when they were on the levies" by the Rio Grande, he said.

A third agent said: "They aren't out in the field like last time, doing the observation points. So if the goal was to get more agents out to the line, they have fallen short."

More from Politico:

Back in April, Trump hailed the deployment as a “big step,” claiming, “We really haven’t done that before, or certainly not very much before.”

But that isn’t accurate, either: Both George W. Bush and Barack Obama sent the guard to the border under similar circumstances; Bush in far larger numbers than Trump — some 6,000 compared with up to 4,000 now, and Obama to the tune of 1,200.

A few National Guard helicopters and crew have also been enlisted to join the Border Patrol fleet for aerial surveillance, but more troops are clearing vegetation, serving as office clerks and making basic repairs to Border Patrol facilities.

They’re as far away from the border as possible. In reality, the hundreds of troops deployed in southern Arizona are keeping up the rear, so to speak; in one assignment, soldiers are actually feeding and shoveling out manure from the stalls of the Border Patrol’s horses.

Shoveling manure is very symbolic of the nature of this assignment. It was announced to give President Trump cover while he signed that terrible budget which tied his hands on border security. I suspect the specific limitations on the Guard are probably not President Trump's doing, but probably fall under the responsibility of either his Secretary of Homeland Security, Kirstjen "Lady DACA" Neilsen or his Secretary of Defense James Mattis, who loved the Iran deal and hated waterboarding of Islamic terrorists.

President Trump has done some good things to try to secure the border, namely prosecuting illegals and tightening up asylum rules. But this border deployment is a sham and the way it has been executed is a total disgrace.

[originally in AT]



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