back to article 'Death knell' for Eye-o-Sauron™ US border stare-towers

Plans to erect a chain of tall towers topped by all-seeing eyes along the US southern border - for the purpose of detecting inbound huddled masses, rather than troublesome hobbits - have perhaps been torpedoed at last, according to reports. Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano announced on Tuesday that $50m of economic …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Cost effective

    "Not only do we have an obligation to secure our borders, we have a responsibility to do so in the most cost-effective way possible,"

    Does Napolitano mean "We have enough gun toting Texans happy to do this for free" ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @ Cost Effective

      Wouldn't it be cheaper to pay Mexicans to do this?

  2. Paul Hates Handles

    Here's an idea...

    ...instead of spending all that time and effort blocking Mexico...

    Open the borders. Completely.

    Then spend the cash assisting Mehico in various ways until they don't feel the need to go to the US for a better life / money.

    Improve their quality of life, set up import/export and then it'll just be like an unofficial state.

    1. censored

      Same could be said of the defence budget...

      To paraphrase Bill Hicks, use it to feed, clothe and educate every child on the planet, provide healthcare and clean water and allow people to develop as they choose - which the defence budget would do many times over - and no-one would ever want to attack you anyway...

  3. The Indomitable Gall

    Potentially expensive mistake...

    "the Obama administration ... intends to fund the first phase of its rollout to the tune of $574m"

    I hope that $574m includes a good insurance policy, because damned sure the professional people smugglers will be hiring snipers to take out the cameras....

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    No what it means is we still have to allow enough through, so that we can continue to pay people shit wages to do shit jobs.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    ...that a nation founded on immigration should now be so xenophobic about immigrants. Time to hand back the Statue of Liberty perhaps - or at least have the decency to cover up that famous plaque.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Richest third world nation on the planet

  7. MinionZero
    Big Brother

    Version 1 dead, wait for version 2 ...

    ... and Version 3 and Version 4 etc...

    So that title should read, "'Death knell' of Version 1 of Eye-o-Sauron™ US border stare-towers"

    Give them a few years of R&D and we will have another round of deals to discuss more cost effective new spy towers.

    People in power always want control, so sooner or later they get want they want, because they never give up with their need for control over others, so if we don't have spy towers now, we will have them sooner or later.

    So the slide towards an Orwellian world continues, its just that slide isn't smooth, its Stochastic. So we can't celebrate the end of this system because the slide will continue to get ever worse over time.

  8. kain preacher


    Then why dont you folks in th UK let any one come over .

    Secondly the problem with the borer is drugs and the violence .We have had border patrol shot at in US soil by Mexican police and military . Look at the violence on the boarder towns . ITs so bad that when a the top lawman in Juaez got shot , he opted to go to a US hospital. He had to have a military escort to the border , once he got into the US they had a procession of 20 federal law enforcement.

  9. matthew maclean


    one word - landmines

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      fight fire with fire

      Land mines are useful, but to protect innocent people from maiming the area would have to be marked which defeats the purpose. Silent hyper-audial technology is better, but even better is to handle the border the way it would have in the Cold War. My concern is child prostitution which requires video identification of minors passing the border to trace whereabouts of missing children.

  10. John Sturdy

    If the Yanks won't buy them...

    If the Yanks won't buy them, perhaps the Met will. One on every street corner throughout London. Not against Mexicans, you understand. It's the Brazilian electricians that are the threat.

  11. Joe User
    Thumb Down

    Wouldn't work, anyway

    Mexican drug runners would simply take sniper rifles and shoot the "eyes" out of the towers.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nepolitano on border security?

    What a joke. This is the same woman who as governor of Arizona, sent groups of national guard troops to patrol near the border unarmed.

    As for the suggestion to open the borders with Mexico with delusions of impending utopia, understand that the major problems with Mexico's economy stem from problems with political corruption and unenforced civil rights. These problems generally worsen as more money and trade comes in. Mexico needs to find a way to eliminate these problems before it can begin to prosper on par with the U. S. or the U. K.

    1. fred #257
      Big Brother

      just wait....

      Political corruption and unenforced civil rights? Hey, no problem! Just give the UK a couple of decades and it will be on a par with Mexico.

  13. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

    UK banned landmines

    US didn't.

    The last I heard, UK is allowed to plant mines on beaches up to high tide mark - not very relevant to the border with Mexico, I admit.

    Bill Hicks is wrong. If every rich country in the world put its defence budget into a global reconstruction and anti-poverty and free health fund and there actually was enough to go around, there'd be some people who still just don't like you, so you'd actually need a defence budget after all.

    As for drugs... people should stop buying the damn stuff, then there wouldn't be a criminal industry around it. But then I don't even approve of alcohol. I officially have an unusual brain and maybe booze doesn't do to me what it does to most folks, which could change my mind... but isn't normal consciousness, humanity's triumph over the insensate universe, enough for us? Why do people go blow their minds?

  14. The elephant in the room

    While border controls, immigration & the wealth of nations is a serious subject...

    ... this sounds like desktop tower defence made real! They should have a contest to see who to put in charge of the towers - I think I'm in with a shot as I finished all the levels!

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