President Donald Trump is calling for the United States military to play an active role in guarding the US’s southern border with Mexico. This comes after Trump warned of a “caravan” of migrants from Central America traveling across Mexico towards the United States border.
According to CNN, Trump said that he spoke with Secretary of Defense James Mattis about doing “some things militarily.”
“Until we can have a wall and proper security, we’re going to be guarding our border with the military,” said President Trump.
According to CNN, the caravan is part of an annual event organized by Pueblo Sin Fronteras. Many of the migrants are escaping violence in their home countries, especially Honduras where violence followed last year’s contested presidential election.
There are more than 1,000 people migrating north as part of the caravan this year. NPR reports that one of the migrants in the caravan was a member of the opposition in the Honduran legislature.
President Trump sent out a multiday tweet storm starting on Easter Sunday with an attacked his Democratic opponents of hindering the efforts of the Border Patrol. He urged his Republican colleagues in the Senate to use the “Nuclear Option” by which he means an end to the filibuster which allows a minority of Senators to block legislation.
The next day, Trump took aim at Mexico and Honduras. In a rambling tweet, the President called on Mexico to halt the group of migrants before they reached the US-Mexico border.
In an early morning tweet on Tuesday, Trump threatened economic retaliation against Mexico, Honduras and “the countries that allow this to happen” if the caravan wasn’t stopped before it reached the United States.
The United States is currently renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico and Canada. Trump was very hawkish on NAFTA during the presidential campaign. After becoming president, Trump called for the near quarter-century old free trade agreement to be renegotiated.
Recently, his administration has threatened to cut off aid funding to countries that do not follow the US on the international stage. According to the Department of State, the United States plans to provide $65,750,000 to Honduras in fiscal year 2019.