In order to stop the anticipated migrant influx after the lifting of limitations imposed during the pandemic, the Biden administration would deploy 1,500 active-duty troops to the border between the United States and Mexico.
The troops are not anticipated to apprehend migrants or carry out any law enforcement duties, but rather to provide data entry, warehouse support, and other administrative activities so that the United States Customs and Border Protection can zero in on fieldwork.
The deployment is expected to last approximately three months, with extensions possible. It was unclear when they would be deployed.
According to a statement from the Pentagon’s press secretary, Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder, “Secretary Austin authorized a temporary DoD increase of 1,500 military personnel to support U.S. CBP efforts on the U.S. Southwest Border.”
“This 1,500 military personnel will assist with critical shortages in capabilities such as ground-based detecting and monitoring, entry of data, and warehouse assistance over the next 90 days until CBP can address these requirements through outsourced support. Military troops will not be directly involved in law enforcement operations. This deployment of troops to the border corresponds with other kinds of military assistance for DHS that have been in place for many years,” he said.
The Trump administration’s pandemic-era limits enabled US officials to simply turn back migrants approaching the border, but the limitations will be lifted on May 11, when a “surge of migrants” is anticipated.
The active-duty troops will join the roughly 2,700 National Guard personnel who are already stationed there, ready to prevent the migrant flow.
Republicans responded to the news by criticizing the Biden administration’s border management.
“The way the current administration has dealt with the border is a terrible betrayal of duty to the safety as well as security of the American people,” tweeted Senator Ted Budd (R-NC).
“Authorize the use of armed forces against these cartels Immediately!” tweeted Representative Jim Banks (R-IN).
According to Senate Armed Forces Committee Chairman Roger Wicker (R-MS), “this approach is merely another instance of the government of Joe Biden preparing poorly for a situation that is believed to have been long in the making.”