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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Canadians Take Notice, the U.S. Is Militarizing the Border

About 50 feet before a car from Canada reaches the border inspection booth, the screenings begin. A camera snaps your license plate. An electronic card reader mounted on a yellow post scans your car for the presence of any radio-frequency ID cards inside. If there is an enhanced driver's license embedded with biometric information, its unique PIN number is read without you offering it. The Customs and Border Protection computer connects with your province's database and in less than a second – .56 to be exact – your personal information is uploaded to a screen in the booth. A second camera snaps the driver's face. Welcome to the United States of America.

High in the sky over North Dakota, an unmanned Predator drone is on patrol, equipped with an infrared security camera that looks forward 16 miles. The drone is not authorized to fly in Canadian airspace, but it can peer across into Manitoba. Another one is to be stationed near Detroit next year to scan the Michigan-Ontario boundary. More daytime and nighttime infrared camera, radar surveillance towers and remote motion sensors are being erected across the northern U.S. border with Canada.


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