A border wall or fence is a barrier constructed along an international border to prevent illegal immigration and protect a nation's security. Conservatives and nationalists generally support border walls, along with increased general border security, while liberals and globalists generally oppose border walls and support replacing them with open borders.
Growing number of border walls around the world
The number of border walls has been increasing around the world, and the number being built is accelerating. By 2017, over 60 (and according to some sources, nearly or over 70) border walls existed around the world. None of the barriers currently in operation existed before 1945, and their number slowly grew until the September 11, 2001 attacks, after which the rate of wall building greatly accelerated.
Great Wall of China
- See also: Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China is 5,500 miles (8,850 km) long. The first parts of the wall were constructed in the 600s B.C., but Emperor Qin Shi Huang is remembered for his role in building and expanding the wall. The wall was repaired and expanded through the Ming Dynasty in the late Middle Ages and Early Modern Period. The purpose of the wall was to protect China from the Mongolians in the north.
A limes, pronounced lee-mez, from which we get modern English limits, were barrier walls delineating the limits of the Roman Empire. On the outside of the limes were the barbarian hordes who wanted access to the more affluent civilization to either plunder its wealth or learn their technology, but refused to submit to Roman law or adopt Romanized customs.
- See also: Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall is in the north of England, running 73 miles (118 km) from coast-to-coast. The wall was constructed after the Roman Emperor Hadrian visited Britannica in 122 A.D., and construction lasted six years. Historians debate the exact purpose of the wall, but it was probably intended to separate the Romans from the barbarians and to defend Britain's northern border from the latter. Historians debate the effectiveness of the wall, but it often viewed as being a tactical success and the most effective Roman barrier in Britain.
In January 2013, Israel completed most of its fence along its border with Egypt. The Israeli government reported later that year that illegal immigration into Israel had dropped by over 99.9%. The Israeli government reported in September 2017 that zero people had entered the country illegally from Egypt in the past 12 months.
Hungary was overrun in 2015 by refugees passing through the country. In response, conservative Prime Minister Viktor Orbán took several actions, including building a border barrier along the border with Serbia and Croatia. The fence was so effective that illegal immigration levels dropped to levels seen before the crisis began, and by September 2017, illegal immigration levels had dropped by 99% since 2015. In April 2017, the Hungarian government completed construction of a second border fence, one with high-tech features, on the Serbian border. Unlike most other European countries, Hungary's leadership has taken a more conservative right-wing, common sense approach to the immigration crisis.
As Orbán himself noted, Hungary's policies likely saved all of Europe from an even greater and more catastrophic migrant crisis. Liberals and globalists, on the other hand, attacked Hungary for its actions.
As of 2017, about a third of the United States border with Mexico has a border barrier constructed along it. About 80% of that border wall was constructed due to the Secure Fence Act of 2006 (Pub.L. 109–367). Illegal immigration levels decreased in the areas where the wall was built. In Yuma, Arizona, for example, illegal immigration levels fell by 82% between 2007, when the fence was first built, and 2017.
Donald Trump, who was elected U.S. President in 2016, promised to complete and build a wall along the United States–Mexico border in order to halt the flow of illegal immigration and slow the illegal import of drugs, firearms, and other materials. In 2016, the Republican Party Platform began calling for construction of the Border Wall.
- More neighbours make more fences. The Economist. January 7, 2016. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Greaves, Simon; Faunce, Liz (March 26, 2017). Rise of the border wall shows there is more that divides us. Financial Times. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Samuel Granados, Samuel; Murphy, Zoeann; Schaul, Kevin; Faiola, Anthony (October 12, 2016). Raising Barriers: A New Age of Walls · Episode 1. The Washington Post. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
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- Great Wall of China. Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
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- Wacher, John (June 17, 2014). The Coming of Rome. Routledge Revivals. Pg. 63. ISBN: 9781317754039.
- Kassam, Raheem (September 7, 2016). Walls Around The World That Work: Britain Is The Latest Country Bolstering Its Borders. Breitbart News. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Israel completes bulk of Egypt border fence. Reuters. January 2, 2013. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
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- Pollak, Joel B. (June 4, 2013). Israel Builds Sinai Border Fence; Illegal Crossings Drop 99.9%. Breitbart News. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Danan, Deborah (September 20, 2017). Israel’s Southern Border Fence 100 Percent Effective in Preventing Illegals from Infiltrating. Breitbart News. Retrieved September 20, 2017.
- Mitchell Bard. West Bank Security Fence: Background & Overview. Jewish Virtual Library. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
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- Klein, Aaron (February 9, 2016). Netanyahu Goes Full Trump: Surround Israel With Barrier ‘To Defend Ourselves Against Wild Beasts’. Breitbart News. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Savitsky, Shane (February 1, 2017). Border fences and refugee bans: Hungary did it — fast. Axios. Retrieved October 6, 2017.
- Multiple references:
- Kent, Simon (September 15, 2015). End Of The Line: Hungary Seals Borders As Migrant Flow Surges On. Breitbart News. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- Hungary Seals Border, Detains Thousands, Threatens To Imprison Illegals. Breitbart News (from AFP). September 15, 2015. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- Successful Hungarian Border Fence Boosts Support Of Right Wing Government. Breitbart (from Reuters). September 19, 2016. Retrieved January 29, 2017.
- Hungary Closes Border With Croatia. Voice of America. October 16, 2015. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- Lane, Oliver JJ (October 29, 2015). Hungarian Border Fence So Effective Illegal Immigrants Are Now At Pre Migrant-Crisis Levels. Breitbart. Retrieved January 29, 2017.
- Montgomery, Jack (September 15, 2017). Hungary Builds a Wall, Cuts Illegal Immigration by Over 99 Per Cent. Breitbart News. Retrieved September 16, 2017.
- Multiple references:
- Hungary Completes Second Anti-Migrant Fence. Breitbart News. April 28, 2017. Retrieved April 28, 2017.
- Hungary completes 2nd border fence meant to stop migrants. Fox News (from the Associated Press). April 28, 2017. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- Hungary completes second fence to keep out migrants. Deutsche Welle. April 28, 2017. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- Shaw, Adam (March 1, 2017). Europe's pro-Trump outpost: Populist Hungary buoyed by US shift on refugees, Russia. Fox News. Retrieved March 1, 2017.
- Montgomery, Jack (April 4, 2017). Orban: ‘Hypocrisy’ Prevents Europe from Admitting Gratitude to Hungary for Halting Migrant Influx. Breitbart News. Retrieved April 4, 2017.
- Williams, Thomas D. (September 13, 2017). Hungary Takes NY Times to School on Europe’s Migrant Crisis. Breitbart News. Retrieved September 13, 2017.
- 109th Congress Public Law 367. GPO. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Binder, John (August 24, 2017). DHS: Arizona Proves ‘Border Walls Work’. Breitbart News. Retrieved August 26, 2017.
- Trump stops in Arizona border town where illegal immigration plunged 82%. Fox Business. August 22, 2017. Retrieved September 9, 2017.