The U.S. Military insists that thousands of troops currently stationed along our southern border are there simply to help Customs and Border Protection and nothing else.
At first, critics asked why the military presence was necessary to address the caravan of migrants, many seeking asylum in the United States, approaching from Central America.
Marines and other military forces were at the San Ysidro Port of Entry for the second straight day Friday installing barbed wire along the border wall and around construction sites at the port. That will largely be the extent of the military's role there, according to Border Patrol and a U.S. Army Lieutenant General.
Border Patrol Chief Patrol Agent Rodney Scott said specific duties include “putting containment wire, new infrastructure, identifying areas where we currently have construction going on. And then hardening those areas, basically making it harder for anyone to cross those areas.”
However, in October, President Trump threatened to close the southern border to address the caravan if the situation worsened. CBP acknowledged Friday that option is still on the table.
“That could range anywhere from ensuring that we have a defined path where individuals should be going, that could look into a suspension of operations and it could go to a complete closure depending on what the scenario is that we have in front of us and that we have to deal with,” CBP Director of Field Operations Pete Flores said.
Officials said the military’s involvement in the operation will be temporary. The end date for assisting at the border is Dec. 15.