Donald Trump reportedly wanted to beef up security at the border using some extreme measures. In addition to a moat filled with dangerous reptiles and guns aimed at the legs of migrants, the president allegedly told aides that he wanted U.S. Border officials to be armed with bayonets that they could use to prevent people from crossing into the country.
According to an article from The Washington Post, Trump told aides that he wanted bayonets to help control migrants attempting to cross the border. As The Inquisitr reported previously, the president had allegedly asked aides for a trench surrounding the border wall that could be filled with snakes or alligators. Reports that the president brought up the idea of border patrol agents shooting migrants in the legs, in order to prevent them from crossing the border without killing them, have also emerged.
Apparently, another one of his ideas in that same vein was to equip agents with dangerous – but not necessarily deadly – weapons such as bayonets. Additionally, he reportedly suggested closing the entire border and was willing to deal with the fallout from such an order using violence.
Trump is claimed to have raised the idea of using bayonets at around the time that he began deploying U.S. troops to the southern border. Then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis stymied Trump’s show of force by arguing that troops shouldn’t be armed and shouldn’t directly interact with migrants, which reportedly frustrated the president, prompting some extreme suggestions.
“Trump would be throwing extremes at the wall when he was frustrated,” a source said.
While the Post reports that aides didn’t take the president’s requests very seriously, other reports suggest that government employees went so far as to research the cost of such measures. While extreme ideas like bayonets and alligators were not acted on, others — like painting the border wall black to make it too hot to touch, and adding spikes on top as a deterrent — were allegedly explored.
Trump has denied the reports, calling them “fake news.”
“Now the press is trying to sell the fact that I wanted a Moat stuffed with alligators and snakes, with an electrified fence and sharp spikes on top, at our Southern Border,” he said. “I may be tough on Border Security, but not that tough. The press has gone Crazy. Fake News!”
However, both The New York Times and The Washington Post have claimed to have independently confirmed with current and former administration officials that the president made the statements while discussing border security.
While Deputy White House press secretary Hogan Gidley dismissed the Post’s claims, saying “there have been so many wild, inaccurate and offensive fake news characterizations,” he did confirm that Trump was focused on controlling immigration at the border, which has included measures like declaring an emergency at the border in order to appropriate funding to build his wall.
As early as tomorrow, the Senate will vote on terminating @realDonaldTrump’s national emergency declaration, which he has used to raid funds from our military to build a border wall.
A wall he promised Mexico would pay for.
Not taxpayers. Not American troops and their families. pic.twitter.com/D9ZY2sE3KC
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) September 24, 2019