It seems US President Donald Trump cannot get over his frustration for not being able to quicken the process of building a wall along the border with Mexico. A couple of days after threatening to kill the Daca deal and Nafta if Mexico did not stop sending drug and people into the US just after sending a greeting on the occasion of Easter, Trump said he had decided to ask the military to guard the US-Mexico border till the much talked about wall came up.
At a lunch meeting with leaders of the Baltic states on Tuesday, Trump said he spoke with US Defence Secretary James Mattis and decided to deal with the issue militarily. He said the US has "very bad laws" for its border and to overcome that, the US administration would guard the border with military forces. "That's a big step," the president said.
He said the US could not afford to allow illegal immigrants on its soil who disappeared and never showed up for legal hearings.
Trump clarified his position later at a joint press conference saying he was preparing to assign the task of securing the border to the American military and he would have more talks with Mattis and others on the issue in some time.
The recent federal spending bill that Trump signed reluctantly did not approve of such funds for the wall, making the president unhappy. And then the news of youngsters entering the US through Mexico border made him more apprehensive, said experts.
According to CNN, Trump privately spoke about funding the construction of the wall through the US military budget although initially, he wanted the Mexican authorities to pay for it - something the latter strongly refused.
Earlier US presidents too sent troops to Mexico border
However, Trump is the not first American president to send troops to the US-Mexico border.
In 2006, Operation Jump Start whereby National Guard personnel were deployed at the borders started and went on for two years. This operation, which took place during the reign of President George W Bush, saw over 6,000 troops being sent to states like California, New Mexico, Texas and Arizona to restore secondary border fence and build several metal barriers to stop illegal immigrants from entering the US territory.
Bush's successor Barack Obama also did the same in 2010 as part of a plan to secure the border though it was also his administration which had established the Daca policy. That year, officials said nearly 1,200 National Guard troops would be stationed along the US-Mexico border for up to one year to help the US Customs and Border Protection with vigilance and intelligence network.
At the state level too, the then Texas governor Rick Perry had said in 2014 about deploying near about 1,000 National Guard troops to protect the country's southern boundary.
Despite these precedents, Trump's announcement sounded surprising for many officials in Pentagon, a CNN report said, for many officials were not clear about what he meant by his words.
The report said either the states sharing a border with Mexico could send National Guard deployed by their own governors or the defence department could send National Guard personnel - either active or federally activated to carry out the duty of safeguarding the border.
The report also added that deploying federal troops require some procedures and documents - like an operational statement, a strategy and even an informal exit strategy. It also asks for identifying rotational forces.