I bet you won’t see this featured on the nightly news tonight…..but you should.
While Democrats demonize and attack President Trump over basic national security and building a wall to keep Americans safe, it turns out walls are extremely commonplace all across the world.
And new construction of walls is “exploding” according to many reports.
Let's start here, with this article from USA Today from 2018....here is just a portion of an article titled, "From 7 to 77: There's been an explosion in building border walls since World War II":
At the end of World War II, there were seven border walls or fences in the world. By the time the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, there were 15, according to Elisabeth Vallet, a geography professor at the University of Quebec-Montreal.
Today, as President Trump pushes his campaign promise to build a wall on the border with Mexico, there are at least 77 walls or fences around the world — many erected after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in New York City and at the Pentagon.
"Walls are public relations exercises where governments demonstrate that they are actually doing something," Vallet said. "They usually create more problems."
Border walls and fences have been used throughout history to separate warring nations, protect trade routes and repel migrants and refugees.
Here are some examples, past and present:
The Berlin Wall, a monumental symbol of the Cold War from 1961 to 1989, divided communist East Germany from the democratic Western side. At least 140 people died trying to flee from the eastern side, as East German soldiers along the concrete wall had orders to shoot at fugitives if there was no other way to prevent their escaping, according to the Berlin Wall Foundation. By 1989, revolutions in Poland, Hungary and other Eastern Bloc countries caused East Germany to open the blockade, prompting much celebration as the wall came down. The "fall of the Berlin Wall" led to a reunified Germany on Oct. 3, 1990.
Great Wall of China
At more than 13,000 miles long, the Great Wall of China is often called the longest feat of human engineering. It is more than 2,000 years old and took more than 1 million workers to build. The original purpose was to prevent incursions from barbarian nomads in the Third Century B.C. Now, it attracts millions of tourists each year as a symbol of Chinese civilization's enduring legacy. Yet the wall never really worked as intended. "China decided to build its wall as a security measure, but it was built in pieces, and it was never long enough," said Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, a professor of politics and globalization at Canada's University of Victoria.
India and Bangladesh share a 2,500-mile border, and India is nearing completion of a 1,700-mile barbed wire fence to curb immigration and smuggling. The fence is to block migrants from low-lying Bangladesh who want a better life in India. India also has a 450-mile barrier with Pakistan — a militarized "line of control" to keep out militants because of ongoing tensions between the neighboring nations.
Israel constructed a 400-mile wall in the West Bank in 2002 after a wave of attacks by Palestinian insurgents. Critics and Palestinians often call it an "apartheid wall" because it hinders movement, trade and Palestinian livelihoods. At nearly 20 feet high, Israel's concrete wall topped with barbed wire has become a flashpoint for anger against the country. Hundreds of Palestinians stormed the wall this month on the day the Trump administration inaugurated the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem; it was moved from Tel Aviv.
Read the full article, with pictures, here.
And how about this, from Philly.com:
In the last 15 years, dozens of big-budget border walls have sprouted up around the world — driven largely by the desire to block the flow of millions of refugees and migrants fleeing war or poverty.
Only about five border walls or fences stood in place at the end of World War II. That number grew slowly, to about 15 at the time of the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Today? About 70, with more planned or under construction.
That's according to research by scholar Elisabeth Vallet, who studies geography, migration and walls at the University of Quebec at Montreal.
“Building walls is a very costly enterprise, and its purpose is mainly electoral and political,” said Vallet, author of Borders, Fences and Walls: State of Insecurity?
Spending those dollars in less-visible programs — such as overseas peacekeeping and climate-change efforts — would foster greater stability in troubled countries, she said, but building a monumental wall “allows the government to show that it is actually ‘doing something.’”Vallet characterized walls as poor, monolithic solutions to complicated problems, expensive to maintain and ineffective in their purpose: keeping people out. That hasn’t hindered construction in countries from Kenya to Pakistan to Austria. For instance:
- Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovenia, and Croatia built or expanded border walls and fences during the last four years, seeking to block a million or more war refugees from the Middle East.
- Israel erected the 436-mile West Bank Wall or “separation fence” in the 2000s as security against terrorism. Palestinians refer to the structure, which stands 25 feet tall in places, as the “Apartheid Wall.”
- Saudi Arabia began building a 600-mile-long barrier — layers of fences, trenches, watch towers, radar and night-vision cameras — on the Iraqi border in 2015, to forestall attacks by ISIS and other terrorist groups.
- Norway constructed an 11-foot-high fence at its Russian border in 2016, saying refugees traveling north from Syria were illegally entering the country.
- In Northern France, a 13-foot-high concrete wall, derisively known as the “Great Wall of Calais,” was built along a highway in 2016 to stop migrants from sneaking onto trucks in efforts to reach Britain.
“This is in direct response to the unprecedented migration of people around the world,” said Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum in Washington. “Countries think they can wall themselves off from the rest of the world, but history has proven otherwise.”
And this Opinion piece from the Washington Examiner:
President Trump’s commitment to building a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border continues to polarize both Congress and bilateral ties with our southern neighbor. While Democrats argue walls don’t work and even many Republicans question the $21.6 billion price tag, both concerns are overwrought. While critics say there is no utility in a border wall, countries around the globe have come to rely on them.
Consider the latest: On Jan. 7, Turkey announced it had completed half of a more than 100-mile wall along its border with Iran in terrain far more difficult than the Rio Grande Valley.
Of course, the United States may not want to be like Turkey or Iran, both anti-American dictatorships with some of the world’s worst human rights records. But border walls exist in Africa, Asia, and even Europe and they are not simply the tool of dictatorships. Democracies, too, embrace walls.
Consider all the countries which have turned to walls to increase security:
- India and Pakistan: The two nuclear powers, with 1.5 billion people between them, have fought four wars since 1947, and continue to face each other down in Kashmir, a territory both countries dispute. In order to prevent Pakistani terrorists from striking inside India, the Indian government built a series of fences and walls to keep Pakistani terrorists at bay. Had it not, it is quite possible that the two countries might be at war right now.
- Morocco and Algeria: Morocco built a 1,700-mile system of berms, fences, and ditches to stop the Polisario Front, an Algerian-sponsored terrorist group, from infiltrating the Western Sahara. It took seven years to build, but the result was so effective that Algeria agreed to a cease-fire, ending the Western Sahara war that had raged since 1975.
- Israel and the West Bank: The Israeli border wall — well, actually more of a fence in most places — remains hugely controversial because many journalists and United Nations officials condemn anything Israel does, no matter how much precedent exists outside Israel. But, Israel’s fence reduced terror attacks by more than 90 percent, something decades of diplomacy failed to do.
- Cyprus: The irony of so many United Nations officials condemning Israel or Trump’s demands for a wall is that the United Nations itself built a wall dividing Cyprus in order to separate Turkish and Greek combatants. While Cyprus remains divided, the wall ended the fighting.
- Northern Ireland: Against the backdrop of a decades-long terror campaign by the Irish Republican Army and Unionist violence, the British and government of Northern Ireland built several so-called “Peace Lines,” fences and walls up to 25 feet tall and sometimes running for miles to separate Protestant and Catholic neighborhoods.
- Saudi Arabia and Yemen: While the Iranian-backed Houthi militia has launched missiles at Riyadh, why hasn’t it sent terrorists to conduct hit-and-run attacks in Saudi Arabia? The answer is easy. After a series of Yemeni attacks in the late 1990s, Saudi Arabia demarcated the border and built a 1,100-mile border wall.
- Saudi Arabia and Iraq: After the Islamic State steamrolled through northern Iraq, Saudi Arabia scrambled to build a 600-mile border fence and ditch system stretching from Jordan to Kuwait. It worked.
- Turkey and Syria: During the 1990s, the Syrian government supported the Kurdish insurgency inside Turkey. Turkey responded by reinforcing its border with fences and minefields. The result? Fifteen years of quiet. It was only after Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan cleared many of the mines and loosened restrictions that security declined in both countries. Today, as a result, Turkey is building a new, fortified wall stretching more than 500 miles.
- Kenya and Somalia: Over the last two years, Kenya has made good on its promise to build a barrier along its 440-mile border. It may not look like much — as between Israel and the West Bank, it is more barbed wire fence than concrete wall — but Kenyan authorities have said it has reduced infiltrations by Somali terrorists.
Of course, not all countries utilize walls for security. Many others use walls and border fences to prevent illegal immigration.
- India and Bangladesh: Beginning in the 1980s, India began construction on almost 1,800 miles along its border with its neighbor. While India justifies the fence in its efforts to curb illegal immigration, they have also cut down cross-border crime.
- Spain and Morocco: Spain has long maintained two enclaves — Ceuta and Melilla — on the Morocco side of the Strait of Gibraltar. Both are surrounded by high fences to keep African migrants out of Spain and therefore the European Union.
- Greece and Turkey: The land border between the two countries is little more than 100 miles, but this is marked by barbed wire fences and, in places, minefields. While the mines are a vestige of military conflicts between the two countries, the European Union has been fine with them remaining to deter illegal immigration from the Middle East into Europe.
- Hungary and Serbia, Croatia: Hungary isn’t shy about justifying its border fence in its desire to prevent illegal immigration by those originating outside of Europe. Greece’s land border may be well-defended, but African and Middle Eastern migrants simply make the first leg of their journey by sea, before moving north through the Balkans. Other European states might tolerate such a flow; Hungary sees no need. After all, migrants and asylum-seekers are supposed to remain in their first country of entry, which land-locked Hungary never would be.
Just because other countries have invested in walls and fences, of course, does not necessarily make them a panacea. But as debates in Congress once again turn toward immigration and the status of illegal (or, in politically correct parlance, “undocumented”) aliens, critics of the border wall are more uninformed than the president they dispute if they believe Trump’s proposal is inconsistent with international norms.
Indeed, every year, more countries resort to walls after more liberal policies fail.