Apprehensions Along Northern Border Increasing



The southern border has received the lion’s share of attention in recent years, but it might be time to focus attention to the northern border, as new U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data shows that apprehensions are increasing significantly.

According to CBP data, a total of 4,316 noncitizens were arrested at the northern U.S. border in fiscal year 2018  – the highest number in eight years. Between FY2017 and FY2018, total arrests at the northern border increased by 43 percent.

While these numbers are far from the hundreds of thousands of individuals crossing the southern border, the increase still causes legitimate security concerns.  As we have learned on 9/11, it only takes a small number of people to cause horrific and irreversible damage to a nation. In fact, border author and professor Porter Fox suggests that “It’s generally agreed that the northern border is more vulnerable to a terrorist sneaking into this country.”

The northern border is the largest shared international border between two countries, stretching more than 5,500 miles, and is nearly three times as long as the U.S./Mexico border. With inadequate border infrastructure and pots of petunias serving as border barriers, there should be a bona fide concern whether or not the northern border is receiving the necessary resources to secure its region.

The threats posed by the northern border are very different from those posed by the porous southern border. We do not have the massive numbers of people illegally crossing the border with Canada that we see along our border with Mexico, but that doesn’t mean there is no reason for concern.

There are cooperative approaches that should be explored that serve the mutual interests of the U.S. and Canada. Options include working with the Canadian government to standardize Canadian asylum laws as well as offering more meticulous vetting procedures. In recent years, Canada’s lax asylum laws have simply become a magnet for individuals to place faulty claims and then illegally cross into the United States.

Canadian intelligence officials have warned about the presence of international terrorist organizations in that country. Moreover, the Canadian Security Intelligence Services warns that as of 2016, “Currently, there are just over 190 extremists with a nexus to Canada who are abroad and who are suspected of engaging in terrorist activity. In addition, the Government is aware of approximately 60 individuals who have returned to Canada,” and it is likely that many more Canadians who had gone to Syria to fight for ISIS have returned since then.

Clearly, the southern border is facing a more significant crisis at the moment and should remain the priority region to secure. Yet, the new CBP figures may also suggest it is time to start taking the northern border more seriously.

About Author

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Matthew joined FAIR in 2018 as FAIR’s communications specialist. Matthew is a primary media contact for the organization and assists with all of the organization’s communication activities. He brings previous experience in government research, writing, and communications. Before joining FAIR, Matthew worked in the Wisconsin State Senate as well as a Wisconsin political non-profit. Matthew holds a B.A. in Political Science and International Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

7 Comments

  1. avatar

    Both borders are porous and should be defended. Everyone wants to come to America to avoid Democrats elsewhere. We have been careless for centuries about our borders and now democrats want open borders and bankruptcy just like California, Illinois, Baltimore,Oakland and Washington D.C.Once freedom is gone i is gone forever look at Russia and South Africa.America is precious we should love her and treat her with respect not silly childish acts e.g. bankruptcy and open borders.

  2. avatar

    The Invaders Are Canadians?

    Opting for quick $CASH$ private insurance health care in America, because their foreign Socialized Health care [Medicare for all type] has a 3 month waiting line…LOL

  3. avatar

    Maybe you missed this: From January 2017 to March 2018, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police intercepted 25,645 people crossing the border into Canada illegally.

  4. avatar

    The 9-11 attack was yet another example of our failure to track and remove those here who came legally but then overstayed their visas, and also the fact that they never should have been admitted to begin with. They were single young men with no close relatives here and came from “countries of concern”. Even under the pre 9-11 standards they should not have been here.

    CNN and the rest of the media continuing to lie. At today’s press briefing Jim Acosta trotted out the same old baloney that Trump said that “Nazis were fine people” when he addressed the violence in Charlottesville, Va, The fact is that he said there were “fine people” on both sides of whether historical Confederate statues should be taken down. He specifically excluded that he was talking about neo-Nazis. There is not one statement that the media can quote him praising them, only condemning them. There are, however, specific statements from members of the Congressional Black Caucus who refuse to condemn Louis Farrakhan and some who have praised him, the same guy who called Hitler a “great man”, and our media does not hold them to account. Lie about Trump but fail to question the people who have made statements supporting bigots.

  5. avatar
    Alabaster McGillicuddy on

    I am so tired of the worthless Congress of the United States. We are being invaded and they do nothing about it and the invaders expect the country they are invading to care for them after they get here. I hate the helpless feeling. What is there to be done???

    • avatar
      Yvonne Carlan on

      Drain the Swamp! Vote only for the Congressman/woman who stands with Pres. Trump’s immigration policies. Support citizens’ groups, such as FAIR, Numbers USA and We Build the Wall in voicing your opposition.

  6. avatar

    Canucks are generally coming into the US to beat high cigarette taxes up North. But, terrorists can enter just as easily.