Hope and peril on Mexico’s border

F2382de0-8faa-4ee2-8b9c-fe40ea5589eeJohn Paul Rathbone at the Financial Times:

Borders are evocative and often dangerous places, and few more so than the US-Mexico border. At almost 2,000 miles, it is not the longest in the world – that record goes to its northern sister, the US-Canada international boundary. But it is among the busiest – $500bn of goods and more than 60m vehicles cross every year – and certainly one of the most heavily policed.

Most of the US border patrol’s 21,000 agents are deployed there; 10 predator drones watch from the skies while infrared cameras and ground sensors monitor movement on land. The border itself, a third of it fenced, has in places become a near-impregnable fortress that is supposed to stop drugs, violence and migrants heading north, and US arms and narco-dollars heading south. No wonder that President Barack Obama has described the US-Mexico relationship as “like no other in the world”.

Of course, how you feel about the border depends in large part on which side you stand.

more here.