Trump to Send More Troops to the Mexican Border to Stop Migrant Caravans

Trump is sending troops to the US border to stop caravans of Hondurans on their way to the US through Mexico.

On Monday, Trump announced he would send US troops to the Mexican border to stop a caravan of migrants walking to the US from Honduras.

On Friday, Defense Secretary James Mattis authorized the deployment of more troops to the US-Mexico border.

There's a law that dates back more than a century known as "posse comitatus" that bars active-duty US troops from domestic law enforcement without authorization. Other laws and regulations have further clarified that troops can't participate in activities such as making arrests and conducting searches, according to a Congressional Research Service analysis.

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen told Fox News on Friday that the military has "no intention" of shooting at anyone in the caravan, but she noted that officers of her agency and troops alike have the right to defend themselves.

What the Troops Cannot Do

  • Arrest people
  • Seize drugs
  • Conduct searches

What the Troops Can Do

  • Planning assistance
  • Provide engineering support with temporary barriers, barricades and fencing
  • Provide aviation support to move US Customs and Border Protection personnel
  • Provide medical teams to triage, treat and prepare for commercial transport of patients
  • Operate command control facilities
  • Erect temporary housing and provide personal protective equipment for CBP personnel

Past presidents haven't tested these boundaries and therefore courts haven't weighed in. The Trump administration so far has avoided questions about how exactly it interprets these restrictions.

A separate administration official on Friday told CNN that based on items laid out in a request from the Department of Homeland Security, the request would likely result in more than 1,000 troops being sent, but there's a likelihood that number could eventually be pared back.

Unknowns

  • Number of troops
  • Whether the troops are armed
  • Criteria in which they can use their weapons
  • Cost
  • Who's paying the bill

“The Mattis Touch”

Welcome to the world of Jim Mattis, the man whose job it is to turn President Trump's impulsive orders into something the military is happy to salute.

The latest edict: Trump’s order to send active-duty troops to the Mexico border to repel the coming “onslaught” of Central American refugees seeking asylum in the United States.

“Perhaps most importantly, these troops will be plastered all over the media. It shows the administration is doing something about this issue. And by sending in the military, it shows it is a top national priority,” he said. “This president gets that optics matter to the American people and his base. Sending troops means he is taking action — the biggest action he can.”

When Trump shocked the Pentagon with his plan to scrap “expensive war games” between the U.S. and South Korea, Mattis figured out that as long as they made a show of canceling major exercises with dangerous sounding names, regular training could go on unaffected safely under the radar of Trump and the North Koreans.

When Trump — impressed by the over-the-top Bastille Day parade he witnessed in Paris — ordered his own military extravaganza down Pennsylvania Avenue, Mattis saluted smartly and then gradually pared back while finding a way to link it to the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

It’s notable that no Pentagon officials would comment on the record for this report, out of fear that another account of how Mattis is managing could infuriate Trump and end Mattis' tenure as Defense secretary.

Already there are rumors that Trump is considering replacing Mattis after the midterm elections with someone more in line with his thinking.

Both Mattis and Trump have denied those rumors, yet another sign of Mattis' unique ability stay on the president’s good side, while saving him from his most capricious ideas.

Call it “The Mattis Touch.”

More waves have formed and some reports have the total at 14,000 or more headed to the US.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments
No. 1-17
Carlos_
Carlos_

"Who's paying the bill" Who else. The same people paying for the wall: Mexico

Sechel
Sechel

What the Troops Cannot Do

Arrest people
Seize drugs
Conduct searches

This is exactly what Trump is suggesting since he's not saying anything to the contary.

Sechel
Sechel

This is nothing more than a p.r. stunt. There's nothing these troops will do that isn't already being acomplised the existing border and border control agents . It's no accident Trump is sending the troops two weeks before an election. This caravan isn't even near the border and I'm fairly certain Trump's base expects the soldier's to shoot the invaders.

Abundantly clear Trump is inventing bogymen.

Carl_R
Carl_R

One truism regarding immigration is this: It is impossible to have an immigration policy if you can't control the border. Only when you can control the border can you put policies in place as to who, and how many people you wish to allow to immigrate, and who you wish to grandfather in by granting them amnesty and citizenship.

wootendw
wootendw

Bolton has been identified as the one 'whispering' about Mattis' departure.

Republicans would face a midterm disaster if Trump did nothing about the 'invasion'. That could mean another two years of Russiagate.

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