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A sign warns against smuggling in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument near Lukeville, Arizona. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

Unrecorded archaeological sites within Arizona’s Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument could be destroyed by President Trump's border wall construction, according to a newly public National Park Service report obtained by the Washington Post.

The big picture: Customs and Border Patrol plans to finish construction through the Arizona International Biosphere Reserve by January, according to the report. Construction began on Aug. 29. The Trump administration told Axios in August it expects to build 450 miles of wall by the end of 2020 — but was unable to say when it would add its 1st mile of new wall to a border area without pre-existing barriers.

Details: The Trump administration aims to replace all existing vehicle barriers and pedestrian fencing along the monument's southern boundary with a 30 foot tall steel bollard fence, undergirded by an 8–10 foot concrete and steel foundation, according to the report, conducted in June and obtained by a Freedom of Information Act request from the Washington Post.

What they're saying: According to the report, archaeologists with NPS' Intermountain Region Archaeology Program and Southern Arizona Support Office say they "must assume" that all buried and unrecorded archaeological deposits within the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument "will be destroyed over the course of ensuing border wall construction."

  • “We feel very strongly that this particular wall will desecrate this area forever. I would compare it to building a wall over your parents’ graveyards," Tohono O’odham Nation chairman Ned Norris Jr. told the Post.
  • The Nation is one of at least a dozen Native American tribes that describe cultural and historical connections to the lands within the Arizona monument.

Go deeper: Trump administration can't say when first section of new wall will be built

Go deeper

Updated 19 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: Key information about the effective COVID-19 vaccines — Oxford and AstraZeneca's vaccine won't just go to rich countries.
  2. Health: U.S. coronavirus hospitalizations keep breaking recordsWhy we're numb to 250,000 deaths.
  3. World: England to impose stricter regional systemU.S. hotspots far outpacing Europe's — Portugal to ban domestic travel for national holidays.
  4. Economy: The biggest pandemic labor market drags.
  5. Sports: Coronavirus precautions leave college basketball schedule in flux.

Pennsylvania certifies Biden's victory

Photo: Aimee Dilger/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Pennsylvania officials on Tuesday certified the state's presidential election results, making President-elect Joe Biden's win in the key battleground official.

Why it matters: The move deals another blow to President Trump's failed efforts to block certification in key swing states that he lost to Biden. It also comes one day after officials voted to certify Biden's victory in Michigan.

Trump bump: NYT and WaPo digital subscriptions tripled since 2016

Data: Axios reporting and public filings; Chart: Axios Visuals

The New York Times and The Washington Post have very different strategies for building the subscription news company of the future.

The big picture: Sources tell Axios that the Post is nearing 3 million digital subscribers, a 50% year-over-year growth in subscriptions and more than 3x the number of digital-only subscribers it had in 2016. The New York Times now has more than 6 million digital-only subscribers, nearly 3x its number from 2016.