Alaska National Guard planning deployment to US border with Mexico

The Alaska Army National Guard is planning a deployment to the U.S. border with Mexico.

“The Alaska Army National Guard has been notified by the National Guard Bureau that it is authorized to begin training in preparation for possible mobilization to support the federal Southwest Border Mission in early [fiscal] 2025,” Maj. Gen. Torrence Saxe of the Alaska National Guard said in a press release emailed to The Hill on Thursday.

“The memorandum directs the Alaska Army National Guard General Support Aviation Battalion to be prepared to deploy two LUH-72 Lakota helicopters and 20 Guardsmen consisting of aircrew, maintenance specialists and other support personnel,” the release continued.

The release also said “upon a final decision” from the secretary of Defense and the Department of the Army, “the unit will receive official alert and mobilization.”

The announcement comes amid a row between the federal government and Texas over how the border should be handled. Texas last year started installing razor wire along its border with Mexico. The Biden administration has pushed back against this action, saying that Texas does not have the authority to install the wire.

Last month, the Supreme Court ruled that the wire could be removed by border agents, with the government claiming that the wire stopped them from doing their jobs. In spite of the ruling by the country’s highest court, the Texas National Guard has apparently still been installing the wire.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) recently claimed that the installation of the wire has slowed down the flow of migrants at a park in Eagle Pass, a border town in the state.

“The area where we have occupied this park in Eagle Pass, Texas, that we put up the razor wire, there used to be 3,000 or 4,000 people crossing that area a day,” Abbott claimed in an interview on Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures.”

“For the past three days, we have averaged just three people crossing that area. The point is, if we put up resistance, we show that we can secure the border. Joe Biden should not be stopping that,” he continued.

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