In announcing the resumption of a "virtual fence" on the U.S.-Mexican border yesterday, the Obama administration sent a powerful message of continuity with President George W. Bush, who included a pledge to secure the border as part of a 2006 effort to persuade Congress to overhaul the nation's immigration laws.
Much as Bush aides did three years ago, administration officials in the Department of Homeland Security described a five-year, multibillion-dollar plan yesterday to link a chain of tower-mounted sensors and other surveillance equipment over most of the 2,000-mile southern frontier. ...
On Monday, U.S. officials began erecting 17 camera and radio towers on a 23-mile stretch near Tucson, and they expect this summer to add 36 others over 30 miles near Ajo, Ariz. If testing goes well and DHS approves, plans call for covering the 320-mile Arizona border by 2012 and the full border with Mexico -- except for a 200-mile stretch in southwestern Texas where it is difficult to cross and expensive to monitor -- by 2014.
The emperor has no fence.