Hurricane Hanna became the first storm of the 2020 hurricane season to be classified as a hurricane. Hanna made landfall on the south Texas Gulf Coast, 130 miles south of Corpus Christi, and about 70 miles north of Brownsville. Most of the hurricane’s damage was from flooding.
The hurricane made landfall about 5:00 p.m. on Saturday. Oddly, a tweet posted late Sunday night by a reporter for a Mexican news outlet shows video of a section of the border wall falling during a storm. She claims it happened during Hurricane Hanna. Yadith Valdez’s tweet had over 4.6 million views before it was taken down. That’s right. She deleted the post, so I can’t show you her original tweet.
The tweet quickly went viral and Never Trumpers, in particular, along with their Democrat cohorts took great pleasure in the video. Jokes flew. Comparisons were made to Trump’s alleged collapsing re-election campaign.
I have a Trump wall joke but it will fall apart before it's finished https://t.co/sCddVD9C85
— Philip Germain (@Philip_Germain) July 26, 2020
Someone deleted this footage that went with my Mother ("I'll huff & I'll puff & I'll blow your POS wall down!") Nature tweet, so here it is again. I've all but given up on Mexico🇲🇽 paying to replace it, though. #SAD 😭 https://t.co/HOXjEx93ya
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) July 27, 2020
The tweet was likely deleted when the reporter began to see that there are serious doubts being raised about the video’s validity – it probably isn’t video from Hurricane Hanna. CBP responded that something isn’t quite right with it.
Roderick Kise, a spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection in the Rio Grande Valley, said he had received “seven or eight” media inquiries about the tweet from a journalist in Mexico showing a 39-second clip of workers in vests and hard hats watching a section of the fence being knocked over by high winds.
Kise said he was checking with authorities in Washington, but at first glance did not believe the footage was from South Texas.
“The hurricane hit us at nighttime, but looks like it was shot during the day,” Kise said in an interview.
He also said the terrain did not look like the lower Rio Grande Valley.
The tweet from Yadith Valdez, whose Muck Rack page shows her affiliated with a news organization called Multosmedia.com, had been retweeted about 10,300 times and had amassed some 19,300 likes by 8 p.m. CDT Sunday.
“And so, ‘Hanna’ knocked down part of the border wall that is being built between the United States and Mexico,” the tweet’s caption, translated from Spanish to English said. “For the fury of nature, there are no borders.”
Even a reporter for the Washington Post tweeted out his skepticism of the tweet from the Mexican reporter. That section of the wall may have been in Arizona, not Texas. The section of the wall around the Rio Grande Valley is on the river levee and not in the desert.
The post did not indicate which section of the wall would have collapsed, but a local news article from Debate wrote that it occurred between Texas and the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, near Ciudad Camargo. The video shows a few workers in high-visibility vests and hard hats watching as a section of the wall collapses under heavy rain and wind.
However, Nick Miroff, a Washington Post reporter, wrote on Twitter that Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officials indicated that the video is not showing border wall panels toppling in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas. Miroff wrote, “Unclear where it was filmed, but based on desert terrain, daytime recording and style of bollards, I’m guessing these are images of a monsoon out west, prob Arizona.”
If it was Arizona, though, CBP officials in Arizona have no recent reports of a wall collapse.
The hurricane did plenty of damage, which is verifiably true. It dumped over twelve inches of rain along the U.S. – Mexico border. Winds tore down docks and other structures. But, it looks like the story of a section of the wall collapsing was phony – fake news. The question is, why did the reporter post it? Perhaps she wanted to ding Trump or maybe she is an open border, anti-wall person. The part where she says “For the fury of nature, there are no borders.” makes me think she’s an open borders advocate. The CBP is looking into it. Meanwhile, it is the Never Trumpers and Trump’s other critics that look like they were just desperate to fall for a phony story in order to get some clicks on Twitter. You can bet that this won’t be the last time they have egg on their faces before Election Day rolls around.
There have been reports of the privately funded wall having problems in construction in the Brownsville area. There are no reports of any collapse of this section of the wall during Hurricane Hanna.
Just in case Trump’s critics want to criticize him for playing golf in New Jersey and not paying attention to the hurricane in Texas or the one heading for Hawaii, he had a tweet for that.
My Administration is closely monitoring Hurricane Douglas off Hawaii & Hurricane Hanna, which has now made landfall in Texas. We continue to coordinate closely with both states — listen to your emergency management officials @Hawaii_EMA & @TDEM to protect your family & property! https://t.co/tFxHLSqcBE
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2020