Obama border patrol: National security on the cheap
By: Jim Kouri, CPP
For example, on Oct. 2, 2012, a false alarm from a ground sensor sent U.S. Border Patrol agents to a remote canyon in Arizona shortly after midnight. For some unknown reason agents opened fire on one another which left one agent dead and another seriously wounded.
According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, the purchases have been postponed for a number of reasons including faulty installation and oversight in the acquisitions.
In November 2011, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) determined that Customs and Border Protection technology experts did not determine why specific technologies were necessary under the plan and whether these technologies would be successful, prompting officials to rewrite requirements for the program.
“Newer sensors use seismometers, metal detectors, microphones, and infrared cameras that can determine the difference between animals, humans, and vehicles. These sensors are currently used by the military in Afghanistan, but are not being used by Border Patrol agents,” states the Homeland Security Wire.
Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano’s office announced that the Obama administration canceled the ‘Virtual Fence’ project along the U.S.-Mexico border.
The reason for this latest cancellation is the continued technical equipment problems and the rising costs of constructing and installing the components including closed-circuit TV cameras and monitors, electronic detectors, and other security measures.
As reported by in the past by Law Enforcement Examiner, the original border security plan called for a fence and barriers to be used on parts of the U.S.’s southern border, but with the Democrats controlling both houses of Congress and the Bush Administration being weak on border security, the plan switched from a real fence to a virtual fence using high-tech equipment.
Unfortunately, the Department of Homeland Security’s latest failure to protect the United State, was a costly program to place crucial electronic surveillance systems along the U.S.-Mexico border that is years behind schedule. The security project is grossly over budget because Secretary Janet Napolitano’s agency hasn’t adequately managed the contractor doing the work, according to a Washington, DC watchdog group, Judicial Watch.
As a result, hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars will be wasted and the porous southern border will continue to be vulnerable despite the Obama Administration’s assurances that it’s as secure as it’s ever been. So far the troubled project, known as Secure Border Initiative Network, has cost the government $672 million although it’s nowhere near completion, according to Judicial Watch, a public-interest group that investigates political corruption.
The initiative to erect barriers — both electronic and physical — along the U.S. Mexico border has been plagued with a multitude of problems since it was implemented under the George W. Bush Administration. After funding issues got largely settled, some border mayors in Texas blocked the feds from conducting fence work on city property.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he's a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He's a news writer and columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he's syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc. To subscribe to Kouri's newsletter write to COPmagazine@aol.com and write "Subscription" on the subject line.