Grind for October 23rd
“The public is a ferocious beast; one must either chain it or flee from it.”
The border wall is working
Officials in San Diego say a border wall project has led to a significant reduction in apprehensions.
The project, which began May 2018 and was completed in August 2019, replaced 14 miles of weak landing mat barriers with an imposing steel fence. The new barrier is a two-part wall featuring one 18-foot fence and one 30-foot fence, both made of steel bollards, as well as cameras and sensors.
“I’m able to see the old mesh right next to the new bollard and the difference is startling,” says CPB Agent Douglas Harrison. “It’s an intimidating barrier. I’m an old Army guy…and I would not try to cross that.”
Not only has the wall coincided with a significant decrease in border crossings, but it has also improved safety for officers and spurred development.
“We’ve got multimillion-dollar developments going up within sight of the border that could not have existed in the environment prior to starting to put that barrier out there,” says Harrison. “There was too much crime, too many people running through.”
The San Diego wall is part of a larger project that will eventually span up to 500 miles. So far, 71 miles have been completed and 162 are under construction.
In the meantime, overall apprehensions have dropped nearly 65% since May thanks to immigration agreements with Mexico.
In spite of the proof that Trump’s immigration policies are working, Congress submitted a joint resolution last week asking Trump to end his declaration of a national emergency at the border.
Trump declared the emergency earlier this year to obtain funding after lawmakers refused to provide money for the wall.
He vetoed lawmakers’ resolution last Tuesday.
Pence and Pompeo negotiate ceasefire in Turkey
Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo flew to Ankara Thursday in an attempt to persuade President Erdogan to halt his assault on the Kurds in northern Syria.
After four hours of tense negotiations, the Turkish government agreed to suspend the violence for five days while Kurdish forces leave the area.
The US government promised not to impose additional sanctions on Turkey and to lift the most recent sanctions when the ceasefire has been achieved.
After the Kurds withdraw, Ankara will work with the US to “coordinate efforts on detention facilities and internally displaced persons in formerly ISIS-controlled areas,” said Pence. The two sides also agreed “on the priority of respecting vulnerable human life, human rights, and particularly the protection of religious and ethnic communities in the region.”
The deal is “an amazing outcome” that will save “millions and millions of lives,” said President Trump. “Everybody is happy. The Kurds are very happy. Turkey is very happy. The United States is very happy. And, you know what? Civilization is very happy.”
The ceasefire will mitigate the criticism against Trump, whose decision to pull troops from Syria allowed Turkey to attack the Kurds, but some critics say the peace deal comes too late.
“Let me get this straight: we brokered a ceasefire that has the US pushing Kurds out of the area so that Turkey can control it,” tweeted Kelly Magsamen, a former Obama Administration official. “The Trump administration just capitulated to all of Turkey’s original demands after a week of violence and deep harm to America’s credibility in the world…If this is their idea of successful diplomacy, then we better hold onto our wallets when it comes to China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea.”
The Turkish invasion resulted in civilian deaths, caused thousands to evacuate, facilitated the escape of more than 900 ISIS prisoners, and forced the Kurds to ally with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
President Trump is also being criticized for his uncaring attitude towards the situation.
“We have a situation where Turkey is taking land from Syria,” said Trump after dispatching Pence and Pompeo to Ankara. “Syria’s not happy about it. Let them work it out…They have a problem at a border. It’s not our border. We shouldn’t be losing lives over it.”
What critics don’t realize is that solving this problem without loss of life would have been impossible.
The deal reached this week is a better solution than leaving troops in Syria indefinitely to prevent a war that would have happened eventually. Some say that Trump is in a better negotiating position now that he is not directly involved.
“This deal could NEVER have been made 3 days ago,” tweeted Trump. “There needed to be some ‘tough’ love in order to get it done.”
GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know… The average housewife walks 10 miles a day around the house doing her chores.