Environmentalists have been trying to block
the completion of the Otay-Mesa border fence along the Tijuana border for years. Chertoff has now signed an environmental waiver in order to complete the fence. I applaud this action and hope Chertoff starts smacking down other groups who are trying to allow illegal aliens and terrorists into this country under the guise of environmental activism.
San Diego Union-Tribune
The Bush administration said Wednesday it will fortify the westernmost stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border over the objections of environmentalists and California regulators, who feared the project would harm a refuge for endangered birds.
Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff signed an environmental waiver Tuesday night that expedites the Border Patrol's long-standing plans to fill in canyons and erect additional fencing along the final 3 1/2 miles of the border before it meets the Pacific Ocean.
Chertoff said the fortifications would help reduce illegal border crossings, while Border Patrol Chief David Aguilar told reporters the project was "not directly related to illegal immigration," but a broader effort to close gaps that terrorists and others could exploit. "This is about border security," Aguilar said.
Plans call for two additional fences running parallel to the 12-year-old corrugated steel barrier along the border. A patrol road and series of lights would run between the first and second fences, and a maintenance road would run between the second and third set of fences. Sensors and cameras would track any movement.
Aguilar said the Border Patrol may move to fortify the border in other areas, although both he and Chertoff said the administration had no plans to wall off the entire 2,000-mile Southwest border with Mexico.
February 2, 2005 I covered
the Otay-Mesa border fence and the environmentalists opposing it. From that entry was a quote in the Los Angeles Times:
"A true environmentalist would want to close that gap," Hunter said. "The estuary gets pounded by the traffic of folks being smuggled into the United States. There have been hundreds of trails cut deep by the smugglers."
One of the most compelling reasons to complete the project, Hunter said, is the cluster of naval facilities just north of the border that could be alluring targets for enemies of the U.S.
It's not just illegal aliens coming across this area, but the potential for terrorists to do so as well.
Tipped by: Lonewacko