Report: More Than a Wall

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The US/Mexico border fence
The US/Mexico border fence. Photo: Jonathan McIntosh/Flickr, CC2.0

A new report by Todd Miller, published by the Transnational Institute, examines the role of the world’s largest arms companies in shaping and profiting from the militarisation of the USA's borders. "More Than a Wall" explores how - through their campaign contributions, lobbying efforts, constant engagement with government officials, and the revolving door between industry and government - corporations and their government allies have formed powerful border–industrial complex that is a major impediment to a humane response to migration.

The report examines how the mainstream political narrative - both republican and democrat - has prioritised border militarisation as a response to migration, how this approach pre-dates the Trump administration (650 miles of physical wall already existed on the Mexico/US border before Trump took power), and how border militarisation has been influenced by the world's major arms companies which have made huge profits from the exponential growth of government budgets for border control.

Between 2006 and 2018, three US government agencies (Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Customs and Border Protection, and the Coast Guard) put out 344,000 contracts for border and immigration control services, worth a total of $80.5 billion. The report identifies 14 companies as giants in the border security business - Accenture, Boeing, Elbit, Flir Systems, G4S, General Atomics, General Dynamics, IBM, L3 Technologies, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, PAE, Raytheon, UNISYS, and several others.

The report also explores US arms companies profiting from border militarisation overseas; Raytheon has received over $1 billion between 2004 and 2019 from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, including for significant border-building operations in Jordan and the Philippines.

The full report can be found here: https://www.tni.org/en/morethanawall

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