Connect with us

Politics

Trump’s border wall prototypes have been demolished

Published

on

Eight prototypes that have served for more than a year as the embodiment of President Donald Trump’s long-promised border wall were demolished on Wednesday to make room for a segment of new fencing.

“Since the test and evaluation of these prototype models is complete, they have served their purpose and are now being removed,” US Customs and Border Protection spokesman Ralph DeSio told Reuters.

The agency told NBC News on Friday that money has already been allocated for the prototypes to be taken down from their spots just outside San Diego, California, and that another border barrier will be constructed in that area instead.

“There is money already allocated to either take them down or build infrastructure around them. But the decision has been made at the national level to take them down, and the secondary replacement project will take their place,” Border Patrol Agent Theron Francisco told NBC.

In October 2017, the agency unveiled eight different versions of a wall that could ostensibly serve as the wall Trump has promised since the early days of his presidential campaign.

Read more:Trump visited his border wall prototypes for the first time — and the photos are great

A prototype for U.S. President Donald Trump’s proposed wall is pictured after being demolished to make way for a new section of actual border fencing near San Diego, California, as seen from Tijuana, Mexico February 27, 2019.
REUTERS/Jorge Duenes

Using jackhammers, ladders, and blow torches, military special forces and CBP special units spent weeks trying to go under, over and through the walls to test their strengths and weaknesses.

Now, a new 30-foot-high bollard fence is being built as a secondary barrier along a 14-mile section, behind an existing, 18-feet-high bollard fence, supervisory Border Patrol Agent Michael Scappechio told Reuters.

Four of the prototypes were made of concrete, and four were made of other materials, such as steel. Each 30-foot-high prototype cost between $300,000 and $500,000 to construct, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

After undergoing weeks of breaching and scaling attempts, tactical teams discovered at least one major vulnerability: at least one of the prototypes could be cut through with a saw.

President Donald Trump talks with reporters as he reviews border wall prototypes on March 13, 2018, in San Diego.
Associated Press/Evan Vucci

In a spending bill that Trump signed earlier this month, Congress authorized $1.375 billion for 55 miles of steel border barriers. But it stipulated that only “existing technologies” could be used for the barriers, so none of the prototypes would qualify.

In response to the paltry funding, which fell far short of the $5.7 billion Trump had demanded, Trump declared a national emergency in an effort to bypass Congress to secure enough funding.

That effort is being challenged in both Congress and the courts, with a growing number of Republicans vocally opposing the move, and a slew of lawsuits challenging Trump’s authority to declare an emergency over the issue.

Continue Reading
Advertisement Find your dream job

Trending