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Wall would be a help the men and women who patrol our border.

In her Tuesday letter “Wasted money,” Janice Herr argues that once a border wall is built, it would still have to be manned by “armed guards.” Ms. Herr also said that illegal aliens would then either tunnel under the wall or use ladders to climb over it, while smugglers would either fly into the country or use the waterways.

I retired after 31 years of service as a special agent to both the U.S. Customs Service, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. To help allay Ms. Herr’s fears, here are some statistics she needs to know.

Per Wikipedia, the Department of Homeland Security employs 21,370 Border Patrol agents to monitor the 1,500 miles of our Mexican border and the 5,000 miles of our Canadian border. Customs and Border Protection has 21,180 inspectors who man our ports. The CBP Air and Marine units employ 1,050 pilots, boat operators and interdiction officers to protect our borders from illegal intrusion.

These dedicated people apprehended more than 800,000 illegal aliens last year. Many brought drugs, disease, weapons and terrorism with them. And they all thumbed their noses at every immigrant who took the proper steps to immigrate legally to the United States.

The border wall is not a political gesture. It is another layer of protection this country desperately needs. Alone, the wall itself won’t single-handedly stop all border intrusions. But in conjunction with the brave men and women of the border agencies, it will significantly stem the flow of illegal aliens into this country. And in these days of reckless spending, $5 billion is a bargain to help secure the borders of the United States.

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