Friday, October 27, 2006

Borders n Walls

borders n walls ...

last nite, was reminded'a tha fact there's usually been hella repression happenin right before our struggles make change. cuz always, wit oppression comes resistance. was reminded'a that while still inside, have ta'keep remindin self n alla us daily. wit oppression comes resistance -- we don't n ain't neva stopped.

always love, support n protect each otha.

Elbit to help US secure Mexican border


Sep. 25, 2006


A consortium led by Boeing, the second-largest American defense contractor, and including Israel's Elbit Systems, has won the first piece of an estimated $2 billion government project to develop and provide new technologies to secure the US borders, The Jerusalem Post has learned.

The $80 million contract is the first part of a multibillion-dollar Homeland
Security Department plan to secure America's borders with Mexico and Canada. The program's final cost is unknown, a department official said, because it hinges largely on whether Congress approves spending some $1b. to build a fence along the Mexican border. Until then, the contract will be given to Boeing in phases, the department official said.

Chicago-based Boeing was among several major defense companies competing for the job. While other companies' proposals relied more on using aerial drones, Boeing focused on a network of 1,800 high-tech towers equipped with cameras and motion detectors that could feed live information to Border Patrol agents.
Elbit participates in the the consortium through Kollsman Inc., its US subsidiary.

Kollsman's expertise includes the integration and development of advanced
electro-optical systems for surveillance and tracking, optical fiber technology for security, video communication and control systems alongside image-processing and smart systems for electronic fences.

Drones from the Hermes family of unmanned aerial vehicle and the mini-sized Skylark UAV, which can be carried in a pack by a single soldier, are also some of the capabilities Kollsman brought to the consortium.

The contract, part of the Secure Border Initiative, is the US government's latest attempt to use advanced technology to solve its illegal immigration problem.

The Department of Homeland Security gave companies chasing the contract - including Lockheed Martin Corp. and Northrop Grumman Corp. - freedom to come up with their own ideas for how best to apply new and developing technologies to the problem.


Bush signs U.S.-Mexico border fence bill
Associated Press

By DEB RIECHMANN, Associated Press Writer

Thu Oct 26, 11:32 AM ET

President Bush signed a bill Thursday authorizing 700 miles of new fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border, hoping to give Republican candidates a pre-election platform for asserting they're tough on illegal immigration.

"Unfortunately the United States has not been in complete control of its borders for decades and therefore illegal immigration has been on the rise," Bush said at a signing ceremony.

"We have a responsibility to enforce our laws," he said. "We have a responsibility to secure our borders. We take this responsibility serious."

He called the fence bill "an important step in our nation's efforts to secure our borders."

The centerpiece of Bush's immigration policy, a guest worker program, remains stalled in Congress.

And a handful of House Republican are at the brakes, blocking negotiations with the Senate for a bill that includes the president's proposal.

Still, Bush argues that it would be easier to get his guest worker program passed if Republicans keep their majorities in the House and Senate after the Nov. 7 elections. His proposal would allow legal employment for foreigners and give some of the estimated 11 million to 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States a shot at becoming American citizens.

The measure Bush put into law Thursday before heading for campaign stops in Iowa and Michigan offers no money for the fence project covering one-third of the 2,100-mile border.

Its cost is not known, although a homeland security spending measure the president signed earlier this month makes a $1.2 billion down payment on the project. The money also can be used for access roads, vehicle barriers, lighting, high-tech equipment and other tools to secure the border.

Mexican officials have criticized the fence. Outgoing Mexican President Vicente Fox, who has spent much of his six years in office lobbying for a new guest worker program and a chance at citizenship for the millions of Mexicans working illegally in the U.S., calls the fence "shameful" and compares it to the Berlin Wall.

Others have doubts about its effectiveness.

"A fence will slow people down by a minute or two, but if you don't have the agents to stop them it does no good. We're not talking about some impenetrable barrier," T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council, a union representing Border Patrol agents, said Wednesday.

Customs and Border Protection statistics show that apprehensions at border crossings are down 8 percent nationally for the budget year that just ended, Bonner said. Apprehensions were up in the San Diego sector, he said, an area of the nearly 2,000-mile border that has the most fencing.

A spokesman for Customs and Border Protection would not confirm the statistics or discuss reasons for the increase in the San Diego sector.

Sens. John Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison, both Texas Republicans, had wanted to amend the fence bill to give local governments more say about where fencing is erected. They lost that battle, but Republican leaders assured them the Homeland Security Department would have flexibility to choose other options instead of fencing, if needed.

Cornyn said he voted for the fence because he wanted to help demonstrate that Congress was serious about border security.

"The choice we were presented was: Are we going to vote to enhance border security, or against it?" Cornyn said. "I think that's how the vote was viewed."


Associated Press Writer Suzanne Gamboa contributed to this report.


On the Net:

Information on the bill, H.R. 6061, can be found at


Border Fence to Divide Three Native American Nations
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Rumbo, News Report, Rodrigo París, Translated by Elena Shore, Oct 06, 2006

Criticism by Native Americans who Live along the Border

Three Native American nations and 23 tribes live in the borderlands between the United States and Mexico. The construction of the border separation fence approved by Congress will divide in two the ancient history of these peoples.

"The land is the place God put us from time immemorial. I can't imagine that now it will be difficult to visit my family," because of the construction of the fence, said Louis Gussac, chief of the Koumeyaay nation located on both sides of the California border.

These sentences are repeated time and time again on the reservations' international limits.

The tribes' situation has been difficult since 2001 as a result of an increase in the Border Patrol, the presence of National Guard troops in the last four months and narco-traffic activities in some areas along the border.

O'odham, Cocopah and Kickapoo are the three Native American nations that will see their culture and land divided by a fence that is at least five feet tall and, according to Congress, is expected to be completed in May 2008.

"Although the project is meant to stop the undocumented, it affects our life," said Gussac.

Texas Has its own History Too

The Kickapoo nation resides in the Eagle Pass area. These Native Americans see the fence that will be built there as a tragic sign.

Congress approved a span of the fence that will go from five miles northwest of Del Río to five miles southeast of Eagle Pass.

"The territory of this reservation will be permanently divided by the hand of man," said anthropologist and Kickapoo expert Rebeca Brush.

Throughout history, the Kickapoo have had to change their traditions. In the 17th century, they lived in the Great Lakes region. A century later they were displaced to Kansas and Texas.

"It's one thing to change where you live, but it's something else to have a fence separate the members of a nation," Brush explained.

"It's truly a tragedy. The construction of the fence doesn't make any sense," says José Aranda, a member of the Kickapoo in Eagle Pass.

"This isn't the way to solve a problem that's more complicated and needs a more intelligent solution," explained Jaime Loiácono, the priest of a church in Eagle Pass.

"Fifty percent of the high school students on the reservation are Black Rocks. What's going to happen to them?" the priest asked.

The mayor of the city, Chad Foster, has expressed strong criticism of the fence. "It's a cure that is worse than the disease," he said before Congress approved the bill.

The Kickapoo, despite living in the United States for centuries, were not recognized as a nation until 1983.

Two decades later, various miles of fence will divide the land where they live, and the steel beams will be nailed like a threat to the preservation of their unity, family and customs.


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