back to article US border patrol tests 98-foot networked radar towers

American border guards will soon deploy 98-foot-tall radar surveillance masts with built-in wireless networking in a bid to prevent the Land of the Free being overrun by huddled masses of Mexicans (and perhaps Canadians) intent on entering the US illegally and working hard for very little money. Boeing, prime contractor for the …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Clay Garland

    Supply of Labor

    If we could only dispose of the illegals when they reach an age where they work less efficiently. i.e. New illegals in at age 17, out at age 45. It's a perfect system. Even better, dispose of them in some way useful, food for the poor, fertilizer, or giant flesh fueled walking beasts to protect our northern borders from the scourge of the north, eh?


    Wetback RADAR

    Hell...It only cost 5bn to build the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier. Why not just let the Border Patrol Agents call in airstrikes! Multiple, if not initial, attempts to slither across the border would be vastly reduced.

  3. Norman Wanzer

    Wrong Issue

    Mexicans crossing the border has never been an issue for me. What scares the heck out of me is the fact that someone carrying a chemical or bio weapon can just walk across the border and no one would ever know until it is used.

    There are large areas of both the Canadian and Mexican borders that are not patrolled at all. I know of one border crossing for US and Canada that isn’t even staffed on the US side. They have a phone you are supposed to use to call an office 20 miles away and say you are entering the country. It goes without saying that most people don’t even stop.

    So every time someone complains about the cost of securing the borders and how unfair it is to the Mexicans trying to get into the country I just tell them to go look at the hole in the ground in NYC were the World Trade Center used to stand. Something that massive could happen again and we would have no one else to blame but ourselves.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Border patrol growth industry

    Last month I spent a week riding near Bobaquivari south of Tucson in a region where the US/Mexican border crosses a truly forbidding desert - if the heat doesn't get you then the cold might, if that fails, then there's every chance the loose rocks, scorpions or cactus will.

    Perhaps the saddest thing I've seen in a long time was the occasional abandoned bag, piece of clothing or shoe - never the well made stuff you'd expect an American to be wearing, but something terribly cheap and completely unsuited to the desert which had been left behind by immigrants trying to avoid the border patrol.

    By evening the desert seemed to be swarming with border patrol 4*4s, helicopters, spotter planes and scrambler bikes. We'd see bus after bus of Wackenhut bus collecting groups of people who'd been rounded up during the day or the previous night.

    Before I'd gone I'd sort of assumed it was the occasional person getting over the border, but it's clear there are hundreds of people risking everything to get into the US. I can't imagine how desperate these folks are to think about a night-time crossing of a region that is unendingly hostile to humans.

    Will this technology help? Probably not. It'll only end when there is no good reason to risk your life stumbling through a pitch-black, freezing wilderness.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The service provided by the coyotes is on a "best effort" basis, paid in advance. I doubt tighter border security will affect their paychecks all that much.

    In the post-9/11 world, americans are meant to be afraid of open borders, because swarthy terrorists might mingle with the migrant laborors. Perhaps people living on an island don't get an adequate feeling for the potential risks posed by very long, thinly populated, walk-across borders.

    The issue of border security gets confused with the issue of migrant laborers and illegal immigrants, and with the issue of drug smuggling. But they're different issues that ought to be addressed as such.

    Reasonable border security is a responsibility of the government to its people. I wish they would make a better effort, even if it cost money. Better to feed the military-industrial complex by improving border security than by fighting foreign wars.

    Not that we get to choose...

  6. Chris

    Waste of my money

    As a U.S. taxpayer, I'm saddened by the ways in which the government is willing to simply piss away the money it steals from me. 25% of my check goes to the federal government, 5.3% goes to the state government, and 15.3% goes to social security and medicare (social security which will be completely gone by the time I'm allowed to retire). That's 45.6% of my paycheck going to the government. And let's be honest, what am I getting from it?

    Millions of dollars spent on each missile, bomb, helicopter, plane, ship, etc. Helicopters which seem to be falling from the sky in Iraq at an alarming pace. No matter, we'll simply build more. Need more money? No problem, take it from the social security fund. They don't need it anyway.

    And now this. 8 to 30 billion? What the hell kind of estimate is that? If I walked up to boss and said that I had a project that would cost 8 to 30 thousand dollars, I would either be laughed at, yelled at, or fired. An estimate is not supposed to range from 100 to 375%. How is it even possible to not know whether your project will cost 8 or 30 (almost 4 times 8)? But most of all, as pointed out in this article, this will do literally nothing. This will only stop people temporarily (if at all). So after this initial 8 to 30 billion dollars is wasted, how much is going to be wasted every year on the vehicle/equipment maintenance and repair, as well as the additional personnel?

    And let's briefly touch upon defensive capabilities. How will these towers stand against things such as hurricanes and tornadoes? What effect will hurricanes, tornadoes, rain, dust storms, etc. have on the communication? What about weapons such as rockets or bombs (including homemade pipe bombs)? Are these towers susceptible to EMI? What about an EMP?

    Seems to be quite a lot of money for something that will have little or no effect, and can most likely be easily taken out of service.

    And am I really the only one who sees the complete lunacy of "protecting" the Mexican border, but leaving the north, east, and west borders completely open? Even if they close the northern border as well, that leaves the entire coastline open. What, the "bad guys" don't have boats?

  7. Ron Beck

    Shortsighted commentary

    You would think that someone who had seen buses blowing up in their own country would begin to understand the danger of open borders. The criminal element, whether out killing and robbing or incarcerated, are a drag on the economy. A glut of illegal workers affects the whole job market, depressing payscales for everyone. Even worse is the number of Emergency Rooms and whole hospitals going out of business because of the number of illegals who cross the border for "free" medical care. Where is anybody going to go for medical care now?

    I get tired of everyone trying to bestow the rights of citizens upon the foreigners within our borders. America is a land of opportunity, but there is a government here and a process that should be observed. Don't expect the benefits if you don't fulfill the obligations.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can we.....?

    ...deploy this in the UK against the Welsh?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Eye of Sauron

    "Assuming flat desert terrain, a 98-foot mast will have line of sight range out to approximately 12 miles, so each tower could sweep a circle of territory 24 miles across with its all-seeing eye."

    Anyone else crack up at this comment. I swear, its the all seeing eye of Sauron atop its tower!

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    All for immigration, with papers

    I'd love to see as many law-abiding Mexicans (or any other nationality) enter the US as can get here and care for themselves.

    I hope the INS gets its act together and issues papers to all the upstanding people who want to be here. That way, when someone crosses the border between checkpoints or sneaks in in the back of a truck, we can assume their only criminal tendency is not to sneak into a country to find work.

    Really, when you cross into a sovereign nation without permission, it's called an invasion. What we should do is make it dead simple for people with no criminal past in their own countries who we don't have substantial reason to suspect of terrorism to come in, show their papers, move into a home, and find work. If it's that easy for the common people, we can justify a strong response to those with criminal intent who still sneak across.


    ‘US border patrol tests 98-foot networked radar towers’

    At this very moment there are, an estimated, 60 million illegals in the U.S. (not only Mexicans, also Europeans, Russians, Chinese, etc.). That's 25% of the total population.

    They'll never stop illegal immigration, because the blue

    - and white collared "Americans" want to have their maid (the women to do their work, their husbands to have an exciting "interracial relation", the politicians..., etc. ).

This topic is closed for new posts.