The Trump Administration Is Detonating Explosives Throughout a National Monument to Make Room for the Border Wall

Drew Angerer/Getty Images // Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images



President Donald Trump is determined to build as much of his long-promised border wall as possible before the 2020 election—even if it means destroying sacred land.

Trump-hired contractors are currently working on a portion of the wall in southern Arizona, where they've been detonating controlled blasts at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in the Sonoran Desert.


Organ Pipe is a United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) biosphere—a land with a vibrant ecosystem that presents opportunities for scientific advancements and a responsibility for conservation.

Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) confirmed to The Intercept that the blasting will continue through to at least the end of the month, but assured that they had an "environmental monitor" on site and wouldn't do irreparable harm to the land.

Not everyone is confident in their assurances.

Laiken Jordahl, a land rights activist who previously worked at Organ Pipe, wrote in a recent Medium post:

"The wall is destroying the fragile ecosystem park service scientists have dedicated their lives to protect. It will stop migrating wildlife in their tracks, preventing animals like desert bighorn sheep, Sonoran pronghorn and even cactus ferruginous pygmy owls—which rarely fly higher than 12 feet—from finding water, food and mates."

Indigenous activists of the Hia C-ed O'odham people have been fighting the wall—which runs over numerous indigenous burial grounds and other sacred sites—since its inception.

People are speaking out against the desecration of the land.







You can donate to the Organ Pipe National Monument here.

If you want to get to know Organ Pipe in all its (unexploded) glory, check out Organ Pipe: Life on the Edge, available here.

Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Senator Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) came under fire last month after news broke that she sold millions of dollars of stocks after a senators-only briefing on the virus that's caused a global pandemic. This was just before the stock market plummeted by thousands of points in the face of uncertainty in the national health crisis.

Loeffler also invested in Citrix, a telework software company, just before millions of Americans began working from home.

But she wasn't done yet.

Keep reading... Show less
Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

During the global pandemic, unemployment has ballooned in the United States.

Not only do those people need unemployment benefits, which Congress addressed in the relief package created in the Democratically controlled House of Representatives, but many also lost their health insurance with their jobs.

Keep reading... Show less
CNN

The pandemic that thrust the United States into a national health crisis was repeatedly dismissed by President Donald Trump during its early stages, when prevention was most feasible.

Trump ignored simulations and intelligence briefings that warned the United States was not prepared for a pandemic. Then, the first US cases began getting diagnosed.

Keep reading... Show less
Right Wing Watch

The Hernando County Sheriff's office arrested Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne last week after the Trump devotee ignored orders forbidding gatherings of more than ten people. Howard-Browne continued to hold services at his massive Florida church, potentially spreading the virus that's caused a national health crisis in the United States.

The pastor had told congregants that the church had installed vents which kill all diseases. He also encouraged them to shake hands.

Keep reading... Show less
Win McNamee/Getty Image

After years of boasting about his economy, President Donald Trump now claims that increased market instability and skyrocketing unemployment due to the global pandemic couldn't have been predicted or prevented.

This is constantly proving to be untrue.

Keep reading... Show less
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Governors and other local leaders across the country have issued stay-at-home orders to their constituents in hopes of curbing the spread of the highly contagious virus that's caused a national health crisis in the United States.

But not every governor has followed this example.

Keep reading... Show less