Mr. Obama, build up this wall

Making the U.S. border with Mexico more like Israel's with Egypt

John Dyer By John Dyer

A U.S. vehicle patrols the picturesque border fence in Douglas, Arizona. (Reuters/Curt Prendergast)

Americans don’t usually think of the border with Mexico in the same vein as the heavily militarized zone between Israel and Egypt, or India’s dangerous frontier with Pakistan. But American (and Indian) officials have been taking a cue from Israel on how to erect barriers to keep unwelcome folks out, The Jerusalem Post reports.

The United States Department of Homeland Security has been testing Israeli-made radars to detect folks illegally coming across the Mexican border, the newspaper reports. Indian officials are also set to visit the Holy Land to see how they might better secure their borders against Pakistani intruders, like those India recently said launched the Mumbai terror attacks of 2008.

The Israeli-Egyptian border has long been a porous area for Palestinians and others seeking to smuggle people and goods into Israel. The tunnels between Egypt and the Palestinian-controlled Gaza Strip are famous.

America might use Israel’s radars to augment the so-called border fence American officials have been erecting on the Mexican border since 2006. Around 613 miles of the fence have been completed. It was supposed to be 700 miles long, but in 2010 President Barak Obama halted work on it, saying the remaining funding should pay for technological border measures.

Presumably, the Israeli radars were the type of devices the White House had in mind. Reportedly, the radars can tell the difference between an animal, vehicle or person on foot at ranges of as much as 25 miles.

It’s not clear if they can tell the difference between a Mexican looking for work or a terrorist.