As the federal government is still shut down over border wall funding, it is probably worth remembering that both Republicans and Democrats came together and passed border wall funding in last year’s government funding bill.
Only, it wasn’t for the construction of a wall along the United States-Mexico border.
As Breitbart reported in March 2018, Congress approved enough funds to provide the country of Jordan a 30-mile border wall along their border with Syria.
According to the report, the 2018 omnibus provides $500 million for initial phase one of a three-part project to cover the entire 287-mile Jordanian border with Syria and Iraq.
The omnibus budget says on page 394:
SEC. 9011. Up to $500,000,000 of funds appropriated by this Act for the Defense Security Cooperation Agency in ‘‘Operation and Maintenance, Defense-Wide’’ may be used to provide assistance to the Government of Jordan to support the armed forces of Jordan and to enhance security along its borders.
On page 375, the omnibus says:
For the ‘‘Counter-Islamic State of Iraq and Syria Train and Equip Fund’’, $1,769,000,000, to remain available until September 30, 2019 …
That these funds may be used in such amounts as the Secretary of Defense may determine to enhance the border security of nations adjacent to conflict areas including Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, and Tunisia resulting from actions of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria:
The wall, which began as a $20 million project in 2008 to erect a set of surveillance towers along a 30-mile (50 km) stretch of the border with Syria, has since expanded into a program costing half a billion dollars, according to defense officials who spoke to VICE News. Called the Jordan Border Security Program or JBSP, the wall is ostensibly meant to stop weapons of mass destruction from getting out, but since 2013 has refocused on detecting Islamic State fighters and arms smuggling, as well as refugees, on both sides of the border …
The first phase of the JBSP, the erection of the towers, was completed in September 2009. Phase 1B, the beginning of the fence, was completed in March 2014. Phases 2 and 3, the building of a fully integrated and networked fence running along a 275-mile(442 km) stretch of Jordan’s borders with Syria and Iraq and costing some $300 million, are scheduled to be fully operational this year. Further phases will extend the fence along the entire border and improve surveillance and detection gear. Mobile surveillance stations and quick reaction forces will be stationed at vulnerable points or emerging hot spots.
This money is right out of the pockets of U.S. taxpayers… to fund a wall thousands of miles away.
Notably, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she would only be willing to give $1 to the construction of a border wall in the U.S. and other Democrats said they would not be willing to even give that much.
Note: The author of this article has included commentary that expresses an opinion and analysis of the facts.