I have no idea why this story about illegal fence-scaling at the Spanish border made it into All The News That Fits The Narrative.
At a Spanish Border, a Coordinated Scramble
By CARLOTTA GALL JULY 23, 2014
MELILLA, Spain — More than 1,000 African migrants rushed toward the high fences topped with razor wire. They were met by the Moroccan police, who, with the support of the Spanish military police and a Spanish helicopter, thwarted their plan to scale the fences and enter Europe through this tiny Spanish enclave that clings to northern Morocco.
Worried about a surge in migration, the European Union authorities this year granted Spain 10 million euros, about $13.5 million, to reinforce the fences at Melilla and Ceuta, another Spanish enclave. Spanish officials have now covered them with wire mesh to make them harder to scale, creating an ever more elaborate obstacle course.
They attach hooks to their wrists and screws to their shoes for a better grip. Others climb barefoot. And so the game continues.
Once at the fence — actually three fences, two 20-feet high and a middle one that is slightly lower — it is speed that counts, those who have conquered it say. Some jump from one fence to the next, but often make crashing falls. Most of those interviewed said they climbed up and down each to make it over.
That is an interesting data point to set against the classic "Why bother?" argument against tighter border security, as articulated by. e.g., Bill Richardson:
If we have a 10-foot wall, there’ll be 11-foot ladders going over that wall.
There is a bit more background here, including this:
Spain has demanded more EU money to strengthen its borders as thousands of Africans try to enter Ceuta and Melilla, two fenced-off Spanish cities on Morocco's northern tip which have the European Union's only land borders with Africa.
Last year 4,235 undocumented migrants crossed into the two territories, up 49 percent from 2,841 in 2012, although the figure was 15 percent down on 2001 figures, the interior ministry said in a statement.
The flow of desperate Africans heading to Ceuta and Melilla has surged over the past year, with migrants regularly storming the six-metre-high (20-foot) border fences.
Others try to smuggle themselves past checkpoints hidden in the undercarriages of cars or sail across the strait of Gibraltar to mainland Spain in flimsy inflatable dinghies.
The government said on Tuesday however that the number of undocumented migrants reaching Spanish shores by boat eased by 15 percent overall to 3,237 in 2013.
The number was also down 90.7 percent on 2006 figures when 39,180 reached Spain by boat, the ministry added for context.
Their figures for the year read like a week at the Texas border.