U.S. military personnel will reportedly be deployed to the U.S.-Mexico border to paint segments of barrier structures to improve its “aesthetic appearance.”
What are the details?
On Wednesday afternoon, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) tweeted that the Department of Homeland Security notified Congress of the decision.
In his tweet, Durbin expressed his belief that such a deployment was a gross misuse of taxpayer money.
“DHS informed Congress today that troops are going to spend the next month painting the border wall & ‘the primary purpose is to improve the aesthetic appearance,'” he wrote. “A disgraceful misuse of taxpayer $. Our military has more important work to do than making Trump’s wall beautiful.”
CBS News also reported that U.S. lawmakers learned of the decision through email, which explained that a number of military personnel would paint barrier structures in Calexico, California.
The assignment will reportedly take a month to complete.
A portion of the email, according to the outlet, explained how this is a benefit.
“While the primary purpose is to improve the aesthetic appearance of the wall, there may also be an operational benefit based on our experience with painted barrier in Nogales, Arizona,” the email said, according to CBS.
CBS also reported that previous painting of border barriers in Tucson, Arizona, has enabled Border Patrol agents to thwart “camouflaging tactics of illegal border crossers.”
The Department of Homeland Security also reported that illegal immigrants have had “greater difficulty” in crossing painted border structures.
Texas Rep. Joaquin Castro (D), who is chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, agreed with Durbin, and said that the move was also a “misuse” of the U.S. military.
“These are soldiers, they are not painters,” Castro told CBS News.
Neither the Department of Homeland Security nor the Pentagon has publicly commented on the matter at the time of this writing.