If At First You Don't Succeed...
by Adam Hughes*
Apr 1, 2009
The "virtual" border fence project is back in the news today, as the Wall Street Journal reports that the Department of Homeland Security has announced a new $30 million project to install cameras on the U.S./Canada border near Detroit, MI and Buffalo, NY.
In case you don't remember, DHS has been working for the past couple of years to create a "virtual" border fence along America's southern border that uses advanced cameras, motion sensors, and other technology to monitor the border. That initiative has pretty much been a complete failure, as DHS and contractor Boeing have been unable to develop a system that actually works. At least the attempt was both well behind schedule and well above initial cost estimates. In fact, it got so bad that the Customs and Border Protection office at DHS actually returned the technology to Boeing and discontinued a pilot called Project 28.
So who does DHS turn to for help with protecting the northern border? None other than Boeing! Boeing is set to receive another $20 million for work on the 16 camera installations along the northern border despite their record of failure so far on the southern border fence. Is it just me, or is $20 million a lot to spend on 16 camera installations that haven't worked in the past?
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