FED UP: Arizona city under fire over use of razor wire on wall dividing it from Mexico

NOGALES, Ariz.– An Arizona border town is at the center of controversy after razor wire was installed on a wall built to divide it from Mexico.

The city council of Nogales, Arizona, which sits on the border with Nogales, Mexico, is set to consider a motion Wednesday night to remove the razor wire after opponents of the wire claimed that the addition was too “extreme”.

Mayor Arturo Garino told the town’s local paper, the Nogales International, that he asked U.S. Sen. Martha McSally to help the city have the wire removed during a visit to the border last month.

“That wire is lethal, and I really don’t know what they’re thinking by putting it all the way down to the ground,” he said Monday.

The sleepy Arizona town of approximately 20,000 people is not the only border location to utilize such a deterrent.

At the direction of President Donald Trump, the military has installed concertina wire at several official crossings and ports of entry along the U.S.-Mexico border since early November.

In a tweet, U.S. Rep. Raul Grijalva, a Democrat, called Trump’s order to install razor wire at locations along the U.S. border a “stunt by the Trump administration”, which he said is “trying to create the perception of rampant lawlessness and crime.”

In an effort to crack down on the ongoing issue of illegal immigration President Trump ordered troops deployed to protect the southern U.S. border at the end of 2018. On Sunday, Pentagon officials said it was sending an additional 3,750 troops to install 150 miles of concertina wire at various locations. There are currently 4,350 active-duty troops on the border.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Department said installation of the wire will continue at border locations in Texas, Arizona and California as long as there is a standing order by the president to do so.



‘ZERO TOLERANCE’: Trump announces tough new policy on illegal border crossings

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Trump administration on Friday issued a harsh new warning to those considering crossing into America’s borders illegally.

Going forward, says Attorney General Jeff Sessions, border patrol agents will institute a “zero tolerance” policy toward illegals caught crossing America’s border.

“The situation at our Southwest Border is unacceptable,” Sessions said in a statement announcing the policy. “Congress has failed to pass effective legislation that serves the national interest — that closes dangerous loopholes and fully funds a wall along our southern border. ”

“As a result, a crisis has erupted at our Southwest Border that necessitates an escalated effort to prosecute those who choose to illegally cross our border,” Sessions added.

The move is just the latest in a series of mandates put forth by the president, who campaigned heavily on his promise to secure America’s borders and follows a series of tweets earlier in the week in which Trump slammed the Obama-era “catch and release” program.

“We don’t have laws, we have catch-and-release,” the president tweeted on Tuesday. “You catch and then you immediately release and people come back years later for a court case, except they virtually never come back.”

“Our Border Laws are very weak while those of Mexico & Canada are very strong,” he added Wednesday. “Congress must change these Obama era, and other, laws NOW!”

While speaking at a rally in West Virginia on Thursday to tout the benefits of Republican tax cuts, the president said the negative impact illegal immigrants have on voting must not be discounted.

“In many places, like California, the same person votes many times. You probably heard about that,” Trump said. “They always like to say, ‘Oh, that’s a conspiracy theory.’ Not a conspiracy theory, folks. Millions and millions of people. And it’s very hard because the state guards their records. They don’t want us to see them.”

During Friday’s announcement, Sessions warned those who may be contemplating entering America illegally to reconsider, adding that illegal entry into the U.S. will not be rewarded and will be instead “met with the full prosecutorial powers of the Department of Justice.”

“To the Department’s prosecutors, I urge you: promoting and enforcing the rule of law is vital to protecting a nation, its borders, and its citizens,” he said.

Also, in a press release issued Thursday, the Pentagon announced the establishment of a new “border security support cell” which will be used to house those caught illegally crossing the border.

“We will not allow illegal immigration levels to become the norm,” DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said in a statement. “More than 1,000 people a day, 300,000 a year violating our sovereignty as a nation will never be acceptable to this president.”



‘DECLARATION OF WAR’: North Korea steps up threats against US; Vows to tame America ‘with fire’

PYONGYANG — North Korea’s Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho on Monday issued a new round of threats against the U.S. in claims that President Donald Trump’s recent comments about leader Kim Jong Un were a “declaration of war”.

Referencing the president’s tweet over the weekend in which he claimed that North Korea “won’t be around much longer,” Ri Yong Ho said the rogue state would do whatever was necessary to protect itself from what Jong Un called a “mentally deranged” President Trump.

“Last weekend Trump claimed that our leadership wouldn’t be around much longer and declared a war on our country,” Ri Yong Ho told reporters outside his hotel across the street from the United Nations in New York on Monday. “Since the United States declared war on our country, we will have every right to make all self-defensive countermeasures, including the right to shoot down the United States strategic bombers at any time even when they are not yet inside the aerospace border of our country.”

The ongoing war of words between the United States and North Korea reached new heights last week after President Trump, while addressing the United Nations on September 19, referred to Kim Jong Un as a “rocket man” who is “on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime.”

“North Korea’s reckless pursuit of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles threatens the entire world with unthinkable loss of human life,” Trump said during the U.N. speech, adding that the United States, if provoked, was prepared to totally destroy” the communist nation’s dictatorship.

Quick to respond to Trump’s comments, Jong Un referred to Trump as a “mentally deranged U.S. dotard” and vowed to “surely and definitely tame” the U.S. “with fire.”

As the tit for tat continues between the two leaders, response continues to come in from leaders around the world who are expressing their concerns that the war of words will escalate into full blown nuclear war.

China, North Korea’s staunchest ally, pointed the blame for the tensions at President Trump, claiming his rhetoric was “pushing” North Korea toward an act of aggression.

“Trump’s political chest thumping is unhelpful and it will only push [North Korea] to pursue even riskier policies because the survival of the regime is at stake,” said an official spokesperson for China in the country’s People’s Daily newspaper.

Russia has also weighed in on the ongoing conflict, with Russia’s foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, saying in a statement, “We are witnessing a very dangerous confrontation spiral,” calling the exchange between Trump and Kim “military hysteria” and a foreign affairs “disaster.”

State Department spokesperson Katina Adams responded to North Korea’s threats on Monday, saying, “The United States has not ‘declared war’ on North Korea. We continue to seek a peaceful denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.” Adams also defended the right of the US to conduct flyovers in international airspace, adding: “No nation has the right to fire on other nations’ aircraft or ships in international airspace or waters.”

Col. Rob Manning, a Pentagon spokesperson, also responded to Ri Yong Ho’s comments, saying in a statement that the US military “will take all options to make sure that we safeguard our allies and our partners and our homeland so if North Korea does not stop their provocative actions we’ll make sure we provide options to the President to deal with North Korea.”


‘AMERICA DOES NOT BEND’: President commemorates first September 11 as president; Vows, ‘Our nation will endure’

NEW YORK, N.Y. — President Donald Trump on Monday presided over his first 9/11 ceremony in office, marking the 16th anniversary of the most deadly terror attack to occur on U.S. soil.

With wife Melania by his side, the president observed a solemn moment of silence first at the White House, followed by a second at the Pentagon.

The first moment of silence took place on the White House grounds at 8:45 a.m., marking the moment the first plane, American Flight 11, struck the north tower of the World Trade Center. The second, at the Pentagon, occurred at at 9:03 a.m., marking the moment officials say another plane slammed into Pentagon headquarters 16 years ago.

“For the families with us on this anniversary, we know that not a single day goes by when you don’t think about the loved ones stolen from your life,” Trump said to a crowd of hundreds attending the ceremony. “Today, our entire nation grieves with you and with every family of those 2,977 innocent souls who were murdered by terrorists 16 years ago.”

“On that day not only did the world change, but we all changed,” the president said. “Our eyes were opened to the depths of the evil we faced, but in that hour of darkness we also came together with renewed purpose. Our differences never looked so small, our common bonds never felt so strong.”

“We can never erase your pain, but we can honor their sacrifice by pledging our resolve to do whatever we must to keep our people safe,” the president, himself a native New Yorker, vowed.

Joining Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford a short time later, the president laid a wreath in honor of the victims killed.

Secretary Mattis, who also spoke at the ceremony, said that America will never be intimidated by those who seek to do us harm.

“We never asked for this fight but we are steadfastly committed to seeing it through,” Mattis said at the Pentagon. “We Americans are not made of cotton candy. We’re not seaweed drifting in the current. We are not intimidated by our enemies.”

Mattis added: “Mr. President, your military does not scare.”

“The horror and anguish of that dark day were seared into our national memory forever. Innocent men, women, and children whose lives were taken so needlessly,” Trump said. “Our values will endure, our people will thrive, our nation will prevail, and the memory of our loved ones will never, ever die.”

Last week, the president proclaimed Sept. 11 as “Patriot Day.”

“We rededicate ourselves to the ideals that define our country and unite us as one,” said Trump in a statement, “as we commemorate all the heroes who lost their lives saving others.”



WASHINGTON, D.C. — As tensions with North Korea remain at an all time high, the Pentagon on Friday announced that it will try to shoot down an intercontinental-range missile for the first time in a test mission next week.

North Korea nuclear capability remains a top U.S. concern because its leader, Kim Jong Un, has vowed to launch a nuclear-armed missile capable of reaching American territory in response to what he’s called “repeated acts of American aggression”. Although the rogue leader has yet to test test such missile, Pentagon officials believe it is only a matter of time.

During a press conference this week, Marine Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, said that if “left unchecked,” Kim will eventually succeed.

Of paramount concern to defense experts is the interceptor’s less than stellar track record track record. In prior tests, the tool was successful in intercepting just nine of 17 attempts. The most recent test, which was conducted in June 2014, was ultimately successful, but only after failing three separate times. Sources within the Pentagon say that despite the advancements in technology, the system has only slightly evolved from the multibillion-dollar effort put forth by president Ronald Reagan’s 1983 “Star Wars” program, which was developed in response to ongoing tensions with the then Soviet Union.

“I can’t imagine what they’re going to say if it fails,” Philip Coyle, senior science fellow at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation told the San Francisco Chronicle (http://www.sfchronicle.com/news/politics/article/US-plans-first-test-of-ICBM-intercept-with-11176038.php). “These tests are scripted for success, and what’s been astonishing to me is that so many of them have failed.”

According to military officials the interceptor will be launched from an underground facility at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and directed toward the target, which will be fired from a test range on Kwajalein Atoll in the Pacific. If successful, the “kill vehicle” will destroy the ICBM-like target’s mock warhead in the air above the Pacific Ocean.

“We conduct increasingly complex test scenarios as the program matures and advances,” Christopher Johnson, spokesman for the Missile Defense Agency, said on Friday. “Testing against an ICBM-type threat is the next step in that process.”