Young Aliens at Military Bases: Time to Shape Up, Ship Out



Minors, and those claiming to be minors, from Central America are crashing America’s southern border, and U.S. military bases may be their final stop.

Nearly 14,000 families were apprehended in April, reaching levels last seen in 2014. Now, dusting off an Obama-era program, the Trump administration is eyeing Texas military bases in San Angelo, Abilene, El Paso and elsewhere as temporary quarters for minors.

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said this week that families with children and unaccompanied minors make up 40 percent of border detainees. U.S. Customs and Border Protection estimates that more than 200,000 unaccompanied minors illegally entered the United States since 2014.

Frustrated by the influx, the administration is ramping up prosecutions of parents while separating them from their children. The moves have the open-borders crowd crying foul; Nielsen defends the practice:

“It’s no different than what we do every day in every part of the United States when an adult of a family commits a crime. You will be incarcerated by police and separated from your family,” the DHS chief said.

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, agrees. “If you simply catch people and let them go [standard operating procedure under Obama], they’ve basically gamed the system.”

Indeed, DHS has concluded that Obama “Catch and Release” policies have done nothing except to encourage the current flood of unaccompanied alien minors.

With Central American families constituting the fastest-growing cohort of illegal aliens, DHS is scrambling to control the chaos at the border. Military bases in the Southwest appear to be the most secure and cost-effective holding facilities for minors while deportation proceedings go forward.

Base housing would certainly be an improvement over a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services program that lost track of 1,475 unaccompanied minors placed in homes of “sponsors” last year.

The only rational responses to the border surge are the systematic elimination of rewards for entering the U.S. illegally, more apprehensions and detentions – followed by expeditious deportations for those who have no valid claims to remain in the United States. Failure to swiftly carry out these responsibilities merely invites more border crashing, ensuring further chaos and still higher costs caused by illegal aliens walking free.

About Author

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Bob Dane, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s Executive Director, has been with FAIR since 2006. His deep belief is that immigration is the most transformational determinant of where we are heading as a nation and that our policies must be reformed in the public interest. Over many years on thousands of radio, TV and print interviews, Bob has made the case that unless immigration is regulated and sensibly reduced, it will be difficult for America to reduce unemployment, increase wages, improve health care and education and heighten national security. Prior to joining FAIR, Bob spent twenty years in network radio, marketing and communications after an earlier career in policy and budgeting within the Reagan Administration. Bob has a degree from George Mason University in Public Administration and Management.

10 Comments

  1. avatar

    Having been there, I would rule out the Air Force Base at San Angelo, TX. It is a small base in size and close enough to San Angelo for the gangs there to take control of and “foster” those illegals who “escape” captivity. These invaders must be stopped at the border (using military force, if need be). Catch and Release should be Catch and Return.

  2. avatar

    We need to enact the practices of the Isrealies on boarder control. They need to be stopped before they get into the country.they are invaders and that is an act of war, we need to treat it as such.

  3. avatar
    Kenneth Hall on

    so they liven tents on military bases in Texas. Until when? remember freedom towing Miami. The cubans detained their (most were criminals from cuba). Stormed the fences and escaped. Then the Cuban crime wave over ran FL. Texas also is known to have storms & flooding, decimating buildings. Tell me how these tents will hold up? Seems like another freedom town fiasco in the making. Stop them from crossing, by what ever means necessary. This is serious critical time. If we dont get this right were just another Italy, Greece or ,Germany etc. Over run by invaders and kiss our way of life good by for good.

    • avatar

      Send them home dout they have AC where.they came from lot of Americans can’t afford air conditioning

  4. avatar
    Gnerd Phynque on

    A tent city in the desert without air conditioning would be a start. Sheriff Joe could run it. He has the experience.

  5. avatar
    SUSAN LINDAUER on

    Tent camps located on military bases would be sufficient, as well. These border jumpers have no reasonable expectation to demand amenities from the US Government.

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