High-tech US border surveillance

Washington warns that the recently-developed high-tech virtual fence on the US-Mexican border is fully prepared to tackle any form of illegal crossings.

The $20 million ‘Project 28’ features cutting-edge sensor towers and advanced mobile communications on a 45-km stretch of the southern border near Nogales, Arizona.

“I have personally witnessed the value of this system, and I have spoken directly to the Border Patrol agents … who have seen it produce actual results, in terms of identifying and allowing the apprehension of people who were illegally smuggling across the border,” said Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.

Chertoff anticipated the high-tech surveillance equipments would finally put a stop to the highly charged political issue of immigration.

Rep. Bennie Thompson who heads the House of Representatives Homeland Security committee, however, criticized the plan for relying too much on contractors and barring Border Patrol agents from highlighting the ‘obvious flaws’.

“I would hope that they (Homeland Security officials) have learned from these mistakes,” he said.