The wall: it was a cornerstone of President Donald Trump’s campaign and has been a heavily debated topic for the past two years. Up until recently, the wall has been largely theoretical – the idea of a physical barrier, with political cartoons and images ranging from a picket fence to a prison style enclosure, complete with barbed wire.
This week, though, a few potential wall versions made their debut — giving us a very real idea of what a border structure between the United States and Mexico would look like. However, we’re still a long way off from construction, so let’s take a look at the president’s options.
Altogether, eight wall versions were revealed this week, and President Trump will be able to choose his favorite from this mix. The walls vary in shape, structure and even material, but all are designed to prevent border crossing at anywhere other than the official checkpoints. The winning wall, once erected, is expected to deter illegal crossing and solve some of the issues the country faces from illegal immigration from the south.
Four of the wall designs feature concrete and are solid, impervious structures. The other four are made from a variety of other materials, and feature bars, open slats and other configurations designed to allow for visibility and air flow but not allow unauthorized persons through.
Four of the walls can be seen through, with barriers preventing actual passage. Being able to see through the walls provides a more open and enhanced view and would increase visibility. The solid walls can’t be seen through and would be more difficult to breach. These could reduce risk for agents and reduce the number of breach attempts as people would be less likely to attempt to cut through solid concrete, particularly if they could not tell what was on the other side.
While the prototypes vary, each is deliberately difficult to scale and presents a flat, not easily climbed surface. The walls range from 18 feet to 30 feet high and a variety of heights could be incorporated into the many miles of finished wall. Testing is still needed to determine the ideal height for the definitive version of the wall. The increased height is expected to decrease illegal immigration and make attempts to climb the wall less likely. Current barriers are significantly shorter and far less imposing and are regularly climbed by illegal aliens.
These walls are prototypes — ideas that still need to be tested. Part of the next phase of determining which wall is best will be permeability testing. Can the walls be breached using normal methods? You have three basic options when it comes to bypassing a wall illegally. You can go over it, under it or through it.
Each wall version will need to be tested to see if it can be climbed, if it can be breached with a ladder or if it can be altered or cut to allow passage through. The way the wall is installed matters a well; the structure needs to be deep enough or offer some form of coverage underground to prevent digging or tunneling.
According to Business Insider, the walls (or a version that combines highlights from all) will be erected along the 2,000 miles that make up the border between the United States and Mexico. These will be on the USA side of the existing walls and feature a 50-100 foot electronically monitored space on the Mexico side to further increase security.
Now that the prototypes are done, further testing for safety, usability and functionality, along with a review of the budget, is needed to identify the best option for the wall. President Trump would then be presented with the best options and be able to choose the right one for his structure.
This eventual wall would represent enhanced safety and security, particularly for residents in the states impacted and for border patrol agents. It would also represent a promise kept to the American people and the citizens who voted for President Trump and his wall in the first place.
~ Conservative Zone