Still, on the ground, several of the agents on the front lines seemed comfortable with the size and pace of the deployment and pointed out that the flow of immigrants and level of crime have been on the decline.
"We continue to see our apprehensions decrease in comparison to where we were in 2000," said Border Patrol agent Escalante, whose unit patrols 262 miles of the Arizona border with Mexico. "We're doing good."
"But we always accept additional resources," he added.
The number of illegal immigrants apprehended along the border, which Customs and Border Protection uses to gauge the flow of migrants, is down nearly 55 percent from 2005. The agency captured 540,865 last year.
More than 20,000 border patrol agents serve on the front lines, an 80 percent increase from 2004 and the largest number in history.
As for border violence, Mosier, the Border Patrol spokesman said, little has spilled from Mexico to the United States. "Activity over there remains over there, thank goodness," he said.
"It's kind of strange when you tell people that but it's true. One of the most dangerous cities in the world sits directly across from one of the safest in America [El Paso]."