Smugglers Using Common Power Tools Breached Trump's 'Impenetrable' Wall Thousands of Times
The U.S.-Mexico border wall former President Donald Trump bragged was “virtually impenetrable” is, in fact, quite penetrable. Smugglers successfully broke through sections of the “big, beautiful” wall more than 3,000 times in the past three years.
The Washington Post obtained unpublished U.S. Customs and Border Protection maintenance records through the Freedom of Information Act that revealed $2.6 billion in government spending on wall repairs to mend the areas where people had sawed through the barrier 3,272 times. The majority of those breaches occurred in newly built areas of the wall, most of which were constructed during the Trump administration.
We already knew the wall was a failure. Professional climbers laughed at Trump’s claims that the wall “can’t be climbed,” sections fell under heavy wind, and the former president was forced to admit the barrier was not as strong as he’d originally promised. “We have a very powerful wall, but no matter how powerful, you can cut through anything,” Trump told reporters in 2019. “Cutting is one thing, but it’s easily fixed.”
The CBP report reveals the wall has had more issues than were previously known. According to the Post, gangs cut through the base of the wall’s beams, which stand 18 to 30 feet tall, using inexpensive and widely available power tools such as angle grinders and demolition saws. Once the beam is severed on the bottom, smugglers can push open a space wide enough for people and drugs to move through. Rebar and concrete are placed inside the beams to make breaking through more difficult, but far from impossible.
“No structure is impenetrable, so we will continue to work to focus resources on modern, effective border management measures to improve safety and security,” CBP spokesperson Luis Miranda told the Post in a statement, adding that border security “requires a variety of resources and efforts, infrastructure, technology, and personnel.”
The Trump administration spent approximately $11 billion on border wall construction, which cost as much as $46 million per mile in some places. President Biden canceled border wall contracts on his first day in office. A couple of weeks later, he ended the national emergency Trump declared at the border.
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