JERUSALEM, ISRAEL – Americans are furious with how U.S. President Joe Biden is handling the crisis on the U.S.-Mexican border.
Or, more precisely, not handling it.
According to a poll published last month by Politico, 58% of Americans in seven battleground states disapprove of Biden’s handling of immigration.
Only 32% approve.
“More than eight-in-10 voters in the poll – 82% – believe the immigration system is broken, and they want to see both enhanced border security and policies that provide a pathway to citizenship,” reported Politico.
Just since Biden took office in January 2021, more than 5.7 million people have illegally entered the U.S. through the unsecured Mexican border.
Last year, 98 individuals on the FBI’s terror watchlist were arrested trying to enter the U.S. via Mexico.
This year, the number has already hit 83.
How many terrorists have already entered the U.S. and were not caught?
What kinds of terrible attacks are they planning?
And how soon are they planning to strike?
Such facts and sobering questions feel ripped right out of my latest political thriller, The Libyan Diversion, which last week shot up the list to become the #1 terrorism thriller on Amazon.
In the novel, Middle Eastern terrorists infiltrate Texas via Mexico and bring nuclear “dirty” bombs with them in hopes of pulling a nuclear 9/11 attack.
While I pray that my novel never comes true, I have to say I am more worried than ever.
And like many Americans, I’m aghast by how Biden is doing so little to protect the U.S.-Mexican border and protect the lives, safety, freedoms and jobs of the American people.
To their credit, former U.S. President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence were serious about border security.
They built 450 miles of security wall, on the way to building 2,000 miles of wall to seal up that border.
They also beefed up the number of Border Patrol agents and negotiated the “Remain In Mexico” policy.
These and other efforts dramatically slowed the surge of people illegally entering the U.S.
Biden, however, scrapped all of these measures – and scrapped Title 42 – causing the invasion to come back in full force.
That said, as a dual U.S.-Israeli citizen, I have seen solutions that President Biden should embrace, not reject.
Border walls work.
They’re not perfect, but they can dramatically reduce the level of terrorists, drug, human traffickers and migrants illegally entering a sovereign nation.
On June 23, 2002, amidst the raging Second Intifada – when Palestinian terrorists were blowing up Israeli cafes, buses, schools, and nightclubs, killing and maiming thousands of Israelis – then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and his government authorized the building of a border security wall between what’s commonly referred to as “Israel proper” and the territory known internationally as the “West Bank,” where most Palestinians live.
“Running a total length of more than 700 kilometers (about 440 miles), 15% of the barrier runs along the Green Line or inside Israel, and the remaining 85% inside Judea and Samaria (the West Bank),” reported the Jerusalem Post.
After Sharon withdrew all Israeli soldiers and settlers from the Gaza Strip and unilaterally handed control of the territory to the Palestinian Authority in 2005, the IDF built another security wall between Israel and Gaza.
Both moves were controversial.
The Palestinian government, many European governments, and anti-Israel organizations around the world howled in protest.
But both moves worked.
“Military statistics show that it significantly reduced the number of attacks by Palestinian terrorists,” the Post noted. “For example, suicide bombings dropped more than 80%, from 73 between 2000 and July 2003 (the completion of the first continuous segment) to 12 between August 2003 and the end of 2006.”
That’s not to say all terror was stopped.
Indeed, once the Hamas terror group seized control of Gaza in 2006 and realized they couldn’t send suicide bombers and other murderers directly into Israel, they turned to firing rockets over the security wall at Israeli civilians, and building terror tunnels under the wall to send jihadists to murder innocent Israeli men, women and children.
Last year, when a fresh series of terror attacks began, the Israeli Defense Forces had to upgrade a 45-kilometer section that had been built as a sophisticated, high-fence into an 18-foot-high concrete wall.
That said, in March the Israeli state comptroller issued a report blasting the successive Israeli governments – including the Netanyahu government – for not having completely finished the border security wall between Israel and the West Bank, and not being diligent about fixing holes and gaps in the existing wall.
“According to the report, the IDF and Defense Ministry’s 2017 decision to cease fixing parts of the barrier when they were vandalized or destroyed by Palestinians led to the barrier’s effectiveness plummeting from being 92% functional in 2018 to a mere 52% functional by the end of 2021,” a separate Jerusalem Post report noted.
There’s no question that Prime Minister Netanyahu needs to get back to work finishing and fixing Israel’s border security wall program because it clearly has worked when it was a budget and operational priority.
At the same time, President Biden needs to learn from Israel’s experience.
A partially-built security wall along the U.S.-Mexican border is worthless.
To stop an invasion of 5.7 million people – including terrorists and traffickers – Biden needs to finish the border wall now.
Joel C. Rosenberg is the editor-in-chief of ALL ISRAEL NEWS and ALL ARAB NEWS and the President and CEO of Near East Media. A New York Times best-selling author, Middle East analyst, and Evangelical leader, he lives in Jerusalem with his wife and sons.