At the same time a new high-tech tunnel has been discovered nearly ready for transport of people and contraband from Mexico into California, a caravan of some 7,000 migrants from Central America is making its way across Mexico toward the Texas border, believing that President Trump “has to let us in.” Who convinced these people American “has to” let them in? News today reports the president has ordered some 5,000 active duty military personnel to the border to work with Customs and Border Patrol officials if necessary.
By John Friend
A massive and highly sophisticated cross-border underground tunnel was recently discovered near Jacumba Hot Springs, Calif., situated along the porous U.S.-Mexico border, sparking alarm among America’s border control and immigration agencies responsible for policing the southern border.
The tunnel began in a home in Jacume, Mexico, which is less than 100 yards from the U.S. border, and was likely designed to transport drugs and other illegal contraband into the United States, Border Patrol officials stated.
“Sophisticated tunnels take a lot of time and money to make,” Border Patrol Agent Tekae Michael told The Los Angeles Times, noting that such tunnels are common in the area. “When we find them, they’re a pretty big deal.”
The discovery once again underscores the harsh reality of America’s immigration crisis, as illegal aliens and illegal contraband continue to flood across the southern border.
A team of officials with the U.S. Border Patrol, Homeland Security Investigations, and the Drug Enforcement Administration worked with Mexican police and military officials, who initially discovered the tunnel during an operation in mid-September. Although the tunnel did not yet have an exit into the United States, it did stretch beneath the U.S.-Mexico border, reaching approximately 336 feet into U.S. territory near the small town of Jacumba Hot Springs, Calif.
The tunnel was equipped with a rail system that stretched the entire length of the passageway, and a solar panel system was installed to power lighting and ventilation. A water pumping system was also built in the tunnel.
According to U.S. officials, the tunnel is roughly 3 feet tall and 2.5 feet wide, and stretches for 627 feet. No arrests have been made in connection with the discovery of the tunnel, although the investigation is still underway, according to Border Patrol officials. Border Patrol Agent Vincent Pirro told The Los Angeles Times that once the investigation is complete, the tunnel will be filled in so smugglers cannot use it.
This tunnel is the first cross-border smuggling tunnel discovered in fiscal year 2019, according to officials. Last fiscal year, which ended on Sept. 30, two cross-border tunnels were discovered in the San Diego sector near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry.
The discovery comes as yet another caravan of Central American economic migrants make their way north from Honduras and into Guatemala, with plans of eventually crossing the border into Mexico before heading further northwards into the United States in an attempt to claim asylum or refugee status.
According to Reuters, roughly 3,000 migrants [Since this story was written, estimates have risen to 7,000 migrants in the caravan, now in Mexico-Ed.], most from impoverished Central American countries, crossed from Honduras into Guatemala earlier this week following a standoff with police in what organizers have called the “March of the Migrant.” They are attempting to gain asylum in Mexico or the United States, organizers have claimed.
“We’re going to drop in on Donald Trump,” Andrea Fernandez, a 24-year-old Honduran mother who is participating in the march with her newborn baby and two other young children, aged five and seven, told Reuters. “He has to take us in.”
The Trump administration has called on political leaders in Mexico and Central America to deal with the issue head on and have pledged economic development and investment in return. However, President Trump also warned Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador that any financial assistance given to these Central American countries would end “if they allow their citizens, or others, to journey through their borders and up to the United States” with the intention of illegally entering America, the president tweeted.
The president also sent out a warning via Twitter to those seeking to enter the country illegally: “Anybody entering the United States illegally will be arrested and detained, prior to being sent back to their country!”
Many economic migrants falsely claim they are violently persecuted in their home countries in an effort to gain political asylum or refugee status. Others are lured with false promises of finding jobs and economic security by leaving their impoverished home countries. Countless organizations exist in the United States that seek to facilitate the refugee resettlement process, often exploiting loopholes and taking advantage of America’s generous immigration policies. Some left-wing groups have even offered legal training to migrants in order to help them gain refugee status.
Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, recently told “Breitbart News Tonight” that, ideally, the Trump administration should simply not allow the migrants to enter the country.
She also called on Trump to “put pressure on Mexico to not issue them transit visas,” referring to the economic migrants. “They have no basis to enter Mexico unless Mexico is going to give them asylum.”
“The best possible solution is to not let [them] enter,” Vaughan stated. “The goal should be to have people not get across, at all, because then it’s a whole different story once they set foot in the United States, whether they’ve been admitted or paroled or whatever. As soon as we let them across, that’s when it becomes extremely difficult to remove them and return them to their home countries.”
John Friend is a freelance writer based in California.