During the Obama administration, U.S. policymakers concluded that a US-Mexico border wall would not be viable. But there’s no consensus on the matter and some people on the right continue to make a case for it.
Michael Rubin from the American Enterprise Institute, a Conservative think tank, wrote an article in which he argues that border walls have worked around the world in the past and that this particular wall is not a crazy idea at all.
“Walls do have a history of doing their job and, indeed, they are the tried-and-true go-to strategy almost everywhere that security or illegal migration is a concern,” Rubin argues in his piece.
He listed 5 examples of walls working over a long distance (because the US-Mexico border is 1,954 miles long):
1.- Israel-West Bank: “The border wall — actually much more a security fence — was constructed in the wake of the 2001-2002 terror campaign in Israel. Almost immediately, the number of successful terror attacks in the Jewish state dropped by 90%.”
2.- Morocco-Algeria: “Morocco fought a bloody insurgency and terrorist campaign sponsored by Algeria’s and Cuba’s Cold War proxy, the Polisario Front.”
3.- Cyprus: “The United Nationsbuilt a wall dividing Cyprus between the northern Turkish portion and the remaining Greek section after Turkey invaded and occupied parts of the island nation in 1974.”
4.- India-Pakistan: “India and Pakistan fought wars in 1947, 1965, 1971, and 1999, that collectively killed millions of people. India constructed a border fence and wall system to keep Pakistanis out.”
5.-Turkey-Syria: “Throughout the 1990s, Turkey faced an escalating challenge from the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). Turkey subsequently reinforced the border with fences, mine fields, and no-man’s land, and it worked.”
The only problem with his logic? Unlike his short list of examples, the United States is not at war with Mexico. In fact, Mexico is one of America’s most important allies.
Mexico is the United States’ second largest trading partner and, according to the Pew Research Center, the U.S. suffered a net loss of 140,000 Mexican immigrants between 2009 and 2014.
What do you think? Share in the comments below.
About the author: Mauricio Holguin is a Mexican journalism student currently at The Washington Center in D.C. He's been a staff writer at Shout! since January 2017.