Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is officially “on the ground” where the United States and Mexico meet, addressing the troops and inspecting preparations made in the face of hordes of foreign nationals threatening to cross the US border.
Mattis arrived around the same time that the first wave of the 5,000+ migrant caravan made their way to Tijuana, where some jumped over the fence into America- and began taunting Border Patrol agents.
US troops have been installing defensive fortifications, concertina wire, motion sensors, and area-denial materiel, a much-needed response, given the decrepit infrastructure that currently stands as a way to keep illegal immigrants out.
During his visit, Mattis spoke to several Army engineers.
“Let’s have at it, young Soldiers,” he said. “What’s on your minds?”
One Specialist in the group then asked the Secretary of Defense if his unit had to pull up the “wire obstacles” they had emplaced at the border when it came time to pack up and head home.
The question -which seemed as it was asked on behalf of the entire “E-4 Mafia” (whom would definitely find a way to sham out of this type of work) did not rattle Mattis, who referred to it as a “good question” as the Specialist’s fellow soldiers smiled the remark.
“We’ll see what the Secretary says,” Mattis said with a smirk. “For right now, the mission is ‘put them in to help the troops.’”
“Yes sir,” the Specialist replied.
“One thing about the US Army,” Mattis said, “We give you a mission, and you’ll do it.”
Mattis stressed the importance of legal versus illegal immigration, noting that his own mother legally emigrated to the United States.
“My mother is an immigrant,” he said. “We both can tell you how hard it was to get into America. Believe me, we want legal immigration- that’s part of what makes America good. But illegal, we’re going to carry out the law.”
Mattis ended the speech, telling his troops “We’ll get through this.”
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