Columbia International Affairs Online: Working Papers

CIAO DATE: 03/2010

U.S.-Mexico Homeland Defense: A Compatible Interface

Victor E. Renuart, Jr., Biff Baker

February 2010

Institute for National Strategic Studies


The United States and Mexico share a common history shaped by military incursions during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The bond between the American and Mexican people, however, has continued to grow closer over time despite occasional negative rhetoric from politicians in Washington, DC, and Mexico City. At local and state levels, relations solidified through the closely knit fabric of our border towns, intermarriage between families on each side of the border, and the development of infrastructure (to include water, wastewater, and gas and electricity utilities) that serves communities to the north and south. At the national level, our relationship became closer due to economic growth resulting from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which now accounts for almost $1 billion (U.S. dollars) in trade per day between the two countries.