Small Wars Journal

Trump Declares Emergency on Southern Border, Opens Battle Over Use of Military, Funds to Build Wall

Trump Declares Emergency on Southern Border, Opens Battle Over Use of Military, Funds to Build Wall by Claudia Grisales - Stars & Stripes

President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency along the U.S-Mexico border, part of an overall effort that uses roughly $6 billion in military funds and personnel to build a wall to curtail illegal immigration.

 

Trump plans to pull $3.6 billion from military construction funds by evoking the National Emergencies Act and another $2.5 billion from the Defense Department’s drug interdiction program through a presidential executive order.

 

These funds are part of an overall plan that Trump announced Friday to use $8 billion, which includes $1.375 billion in a new government appropriations package that he is scheduled to sign, to build a southern border wall. The targeted funds also include another $600 million from Treasury Department forfeiture funds.

 

However, the move sets up political and legal fights that could delay any funds from being used for a border wall for months or years, leaving uncertainty when or if the military will be involved in the wall’s construction, some experts contend.

 

“It’s not like a wall is going to go up tomorrow. It’s going to take months or years to see the kinds of barriers” the Trump administration has proposed, said Mark Cancian, a senior adviser with the Washington think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies. “This is long term, this is not a short-term thing.”…

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