How US Policy in Honduras Set the Stage for Today’s Mass Migration

U.S. policy in Honduras, particularly during the Obama administration, is directly responsible for part of the immigration crisis now gripping the U.S., argues Joseph Nevins.

By Joseph Nevins

Central American migrants – particularly unaccompanied minors – are again crossing the U.S.-Mexico boundary in large numbers.

Under the Obama administration In 2014, more than 68,000 unaccompanied Central American children were apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico boundary. There were more than 60,000 in 2016.

The mainstream narrative often reduces the causes of migration to factors unfolding in migrants’ home countries. In reality, migration is often a manifestation of a profoundly unequal and exploitative relationship between migrant-sending countries and countries of destination. Understanding this is vital to making immigration policy more effective and ethical.

Through my research on immigration and border policing, I have learned a lot about these dynamics. One example involves relations between Honduras and the United States.

  U.S. Roots of Honduran Emigration

I first visited Honduras in 1987 to do research. As I walked around the city of Comayagua, many thought that I, a white male with short hair in his early 20’s, was a U.S. soldier. This was because hundreds of U.S. soldiers were stationed at the nearby Palmerola Air Base at the time. Until shortly before my arrival, many of them would frequent Comayagua, particularly its “red zone” of female sex workers.

Reagan with President Azcona of Honduras on May 27, 1986

U.S. military presence in Honduras and the roots of Honduran migration to the United States are closely linked. It began in the late 1890s, when U.S.-based banana companies first became active there. As historian Walter LaFeber writes in “Inevitable Revolutions: The United States in Central America,” American companies “built railroads, established their own banking systems, and bribed government officials at a dizzying pace.” As a result, the Caribbean coast “became a foreign-controlled enclave that systematically swung the whole of Honduras into a one-crop economy whose wealth was carried off to New Orleans, New York, and later Boston.”

By 1914, U.S. banana interests owned almost 1 million acres of Honduras’ best land. These holdings grew through the 1920s to such an extent that, as LaFeber asserts, Honduran peasants “had no hope of access to their nation’s good soil.” Over a few decades, U.S. capital also came to dominate the country’s banking and mining sectors, a process facilitated by the weak state of Honduras’ domestic business sector. This was coupled with direct U.S. political and military interventions to protect U.S. interests in 1907 and 1911.

Such developments made Honduras’ ruling class dependent on Washington for support. A central component of this ruling class was and remains the Honduran military. By the mid-1960s it had become, in LaFeber’s words, the country’s “most developed political institution,” – one that Washington played a key role in shaping.

The Reagan Era

This was especially the case during the presidency of Ronald Reagan in the 1980s. At that time, U.S. political and military policy was so influential that many referred to the Central American country as the “U.S.S. Honduras” and the Pentagon Republic.

As part of its effort to overthrow the Sandinista government in neighboring Nicaragua and “roll back” the region’s leftist movements, the Reagan administration “temporarily” stationed several hundred U.S. soldiers in Honduras. Moreover, it trained and sustained Nicaragua’s “contra” rebels on Honduran soil, while greatly increasing military aid and arm sales to the country.

The Reagan years also saw the construction of numerous joint Honduran-U.S. military bases and installations. Such moves greatly strengthened the militarization of Honduran society. In turn, political repression rose. There was a dramatic increase in the number of political assassinations, “disappearances” and illegal detentions.

Photo: LA Progressive.

The Reagan administration also played a big role in restructuring the Honduran economy. It did so by strongly pushing for internal economic reforms, with a focus on exporting manufactured goods. It also helped deregulate and destabilize the global coffee trade, upon which Honduras heavily depended. These changes made Honduras more amenable to the interests of global capital. They disrupted traditional forms of agriculture and undermined an already weak social safety net.

These decades of U.S. involvement in Honduras set the stage for Honduran emigration to the United States, which began to markedly increase in the 1990s.

In the post-Reagan era, Honduras remained a country scarred by a heavy-handed military, significant human rights abuses and pervasive poverty. Still, liberalizing tendencies of successive governments and grassroots pressure provided openings for democratic forces.

They contributed, for example, to the election of Manuel Zelaya, a liberal reformist, as president in 2006. He led on progressive measures such as raising the minimum wage. He also tried to organize a plebiscite to allow for a constituent assembly to replace the country’s constitution, which had been written during a military government. However, these efforts incurred the ire of the country’s oligarchy, leading to his overthrow by the military in June 2009.

Post-coup Honduras

U.S. Marines in Honduras in July 2016. (Wikimedia Commons)

The 2009 coup, more than any other development, explains the increase in Honduran migration across the southern U.S. border in the last few years. The Obama administration played an important role in these developments. Although it officially decried Zelaya’s ouster, it equivocated on whether or not it constituted a coup, which would have required the U.S. to stop sending most aid to the country.

Then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in particular, sent conflicting messages, and worked to ensure that Zelaya did not return to power. This was contrary to the wishes of the Organization of American States, the leading hemispheric political forum composed of the 35 member-countries of the Americas, including the Caribbean. Several months after the coup, Clinton supported a highly questionable election aimed at legitimating the post-coup government.

Strong military ties between the U.S. and Honduras persist: several hundred U.S. troops are stationed at Soto Cano Air Base (formerly Palmerola) in the name of fighting the drug war and providing humanitarian aid.

Since the coup, writes historian Dana Frank, “a series of corrupt administrations has unleashed open criminal control of Honduras, from top to bottom of the government.”

Organized crime, drug traffickers and the country’s police heavily overlap. Impunity reigns in a country with frequent politically-motivated killings. It is the world’s most dangerous country for environmental activists, according to Global Witness, an international nongovernmental organization.

Although its once sky-high murder rate has declined, the continuing exodus of many youth demonstrates that violent gangs still plague urban neighborhoods.

Meanwhile, post-coup governments have intensified an increasingly unregulated, “free market” form of capitalism that makes life unworkable for many. Government spending on health and education, for example, has declined in Honduras. Meanwhile, the country’s poverty rate has risen markedly. These contribute to the growing pressures that push many people to migrate, raising ethical questions about the responsibility of the United States toward those now fleeing from the ravages U.S. policy has helped to produce.

This article was originally published on Oct. 31, 2016 on The Conversation.

Joseph Nevins received his Ph.D. in Geography from the University of California, Los Angeles. His research interests include socioterritorial boundaries and mobility, violence and inequality, and political ecology; he has conducted research in East Timor, Mexico and the United States-Mexico border region.

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64 comments for “How US Policy in Honduras Set the Stage for Today’s Mass Migration

  1. Berna
    June 30, 2018 at 11:20 am

    No mention in this article of the drug trade. Hello. The drug cartels are better armed and have more resources than the governments.

  2. Tick Tock
    June 25, 2018 at 2:43 pm

    What is terrifying to me is that this same scenario is being played out in Europe with the mass and organized exodus of Arabs and black Africans. Total chaos created by the Capitalist of the US and Europe in the Middle East and North Africa, but with the idea that this mass immigration will bring new voters for so called neo-liberal politicians so they might continue the neo-liberal economic destruction of the middle class. These problems which were exacerbated by Obama and Clinton may be some of the greatest dangers to the US Republic. On a par with Global Climate Change and Nuclear War. Like a Cancer that slowly eats away the body, these immigration issues are clearly becoming something which all Americans need to be well educated about. I for one understand that I cannot go anywhere (ie, another country) and set up shop. There are laws and these people need to be made to abide by them. And yes we need to stop the US Capitalist’s from using the US military as a way of doing business. Since this is a global issue and one that has gone on for centuries it is not going to be easy to get under control.

  3. Nancy
    June 25, 2018 at 12:05 pm

    It is so infuriating that the bleeding hearts on MSNBC, PBS, NPR etc. NEVER explain the history of U.S. “meddling” in Central America which has resulted in this immigration crisis. Also infuriating is the lack of curiosity in the average citizen to do a little research rather than accept the official BS.

    • Tick Tock
      June 25, 2018 at 2:44 pm

      Nancy, just a minor correction, There are no Bleeding Hearts on MSM news, ie, MSNBC, PBS, NPR, ABC, CBS, CNN.

      • zonmoy
        June 27, 2018 at 11:59 pm

        well, partly true, their hearts bleed when their corporate owners tell them to make their hearts bleed and nothing more.

  4. RickD
    June 25, 2018 at 7:31 am

    The history of US interference in Honduras mirrors that of Guatemala as well. Thus it is not unusual that the refugees fleeing both nations can be laid at the feet of US foreign policy.
    This makes, at least in my mind, the horrific treatment these poor people receive at our border doubly tragic.

  5. pedro
    June 25, 2018 at 5:45 am

    great

  6. butterfly effect
    June 25, 2018 at 1:06 am

    I know someone who participated in “regime change” operations mentioned on this website. He called himself a “freedom fighter” who liberated oppressed people in foreign countries. One time I asked why it was necessary to overthrow foreign governments that were so far away from us. He said that if America didn’t do it, some other country would, and then we would no longer be free. He didn’t give a very good answer. I said, “but we’re not free now” and he admitted that no, we are not. He realized at some point that it was a scam, but it really doesn’t matter. Militant personalities are looking for an excuse. They don’t see “the enemy” as human beings. The US government lied to him about its true intentions, but he allowed himself to be used in order to be given an outlet for his violent nature.

  7. Janet
    June 24, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    It’s a familiar story: US capitalists steal good farm land from Latin American peasants, turn those countries into monocrop economies (sorry, but people cannot live on Chiquita bananas) and, when the peasants begin to organize and rebel, send the US military in to protect “our” interests. We militarize those countries and create the terror and poverty that forces the poor to flee (aka: migrate). Then we complain that immigrants are taking “our” jobs and threatening “our” way of life. In the Middle East, the story varies slightly — we disrupt their communities and steal their oil (and Israel continues to steal their best farm land). The point here being that capitalism cannot exist without resource theft and violence. There is no such thing as “humanitarian capitalism” … no matter what the Democrats tell you.

  8. anastasia
    June 24, 2018 at 10:33 am

    This article does not explain where the Hondurans get the $10,000 needed to pay “coyotes” to bring them across the border. Did he do any investigation into that? How can individuals in a wholly impoverished country get the large sums needed to come to the border and across it? No one has explained that to me. Most Americans do not have that kind of money to shell out if they had to. Something very fishy here, and since the author was in Honduras, I am surprised that he could not find out.

    • D.R.G.
      June 24, 2018 at 4:27 pm

      Good question, anastasia, that has been explained elsewhere (journalists can’t cover everything in one article).For example, families in receiving countries go into real debt peonage to help other family members escape. A vicious cycle resulting in anti-immigrant sentiments exploited in the receiving countries to the elites’ advantage. Famous US General Smedley Butler quote applies; he indicts colonial capitalists from his experience as their enforcer. Look it up if you don’t know him.

    • Robert Cicisly Jr.
      June 26, 2018 at 7:11 pm

      Yes..He totally omitted any mention of the NGO Complex

  9. Largo Event
    June 23, 2018 at 5:00 pm

    If we would spend half the money we spend on the border into fixing Honduras, we could put an end to the border concerns.

  10. Mario Flores
    June 23, 2018 at 2:53 am

    I come from Honduras. I agree the coup from 2009 was a bad thing. Please make your observations about it a little more balanced. Most of Honduran society is well aware the ousted president had connections to drug cartels (as is the case with the 2 presidents who came after him). The ousted president was also very cozy with Hugo Chavez from Venezuela (coincidence?) and tried to replicate his populist agenda.

    The article seems accurate besides that point.

    • anon
      June 23, 2018 at 7:19 am

      You are not from Honduras.
      God forbid they might have a government for the people.

      • Piotr Berman
        June 23, 2018 at 10:02 pm

        I would not be so sure that a Honduran would be supportive of an agenda benefitting lower classes. The societies in most of Latin America lack social solidarity and “populist agenda” is hated by a substantial part of the middle class.

        • Mario Flores
          June 25, 2018 at 5:43 pm

          Exactly..middle class is not easy…the poor want crazy populism and the rich want to squeeze everyone…but turning into Venezuela was unacceptable

      • Mario Flores
        June 25, 2018 at 5:42 pm

        I am, I was just lucky to be born into the middle class, got a good education, and left. i work in Europe as a professional.

    • Skip Scott
      June 23, 2018 at 11:38 am

      You’re full of doo-doo. There is no censorship of Parry’s articles, and only comments that violate their stated policy are removed. This site is one of the best antidotes to propaganda, and you’re most likely being paid to troll it. Time for you to abandon CN; serious commenters are always welcome.

      • anon
        June 23, 2018 at 12:08 pm

        Yes, he made this comment yesterday, and I showed him wrong by posting the link to his Parry article; then his comment was properly deleted. Very likely he and “Mario Flores” are the same.

    • Paranam Kid
      June 23, 2018 at 12:52 pm

      @Mario Flores: what was wrong with being “cozy” with Hugo Chavez? He lifted a big part of the population out of poverty. One can only be against that if one belongs to the privileged, wealthy class that worked hand in glove with the US to exploit the populace. Your comment suggests you belonged to that class.

      • Mario Flores
        June 25, 2018 at 5:44 pm

        It is good he lifted people out of poverty but he did it in an unsustainable way which was only intended to endear him with voters. Once oil prices came down things deteriorated quickly.

        • Berna
          June 30, 2018 at 11:11 am

          Mario has a point. Although Hugo Chavez talked a good leftist line, his walk was seriously flawed. As an administrator, Chavez was a complete failure. But just because Zelaya was friendly with Chavez doesn’t mean that Zelaya was also a bad administrator. Transforming a country from a corporate colony to a socialist democracy is no easy task but a noble one. Meaning: don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. Just because the socialist government failed in Venezuela doesn’t mean it can’t succeed some where else.

    • christina garcia
      June 24, 2018 at 12:17 am

      i am so ashamed of our government . they have no concept of shame. sometimes, shame is not a bad thing.. hatred is not cool, but i hate this regime, my dad army did what he could, but he did not do his service for a punk

    • Elena
      June 24, 2018 at 11:00 am

      Thank you to Mario Flores for this extra detail. I find this type of comments from expatriates very helpful in understanding any geo-political situation. Despite honest analyses and reporting from some unbiased scholars and journalists (this is not in reference to Mr. Nevins article; I stumbled on his fascinating page after meeting a new friend from Honduras, who had to emigrate to Miami after Sandinistas came to power, her family house burned to the ground). Oftentimes clarity comes from one such detail written by a local.

      • Mario Flores
        June 25, 2018 at 5:46 pm

        Thank. I think Americans idealize leftist movements in Latin America without realizing the leftist agenda in this region usually is just a smokescreen to replace a right wing oligarchy with a left wing oligarchy..no difference in practice.

        • Robert Cicisly Jr.
          June 26, 2018 at 7:13 pm

          Couldyou discuss your experiences dealing with NGO’s ?

          • Mario Flores
            June 29, 2018 at 3:45 pm

            Well, a few are trying to do something good but lack leverage with the authorities…but a big number are just there to claim they are doing something relevant while taking someone elses money for as long as they can. A small number actually achieve good things.

      • Berna
        June 30, 2018 at 11:18 am

        Yes we have seen incompetence and corruption among leftist leaders like Chavez and Ortega, but that doesn’t mean that a leftist government can’t be successful. A well planned economy which offers its people a decent living can and has existed. If one simple discards an entire movement based on the failure of a couple of countries, by that measure capitalism can be discarded as well. Capitalism created WWI, WWII, the two most deadly and destructive wars in the history of mankind. It has also caused global warming and the nuclear weapons crisis both of which may end the human race completely.

  11. Aj
    June 22, 2018 at 10:50 pm

    Really appreciated this piece. I have been to Honduras many times. I was there during the Coup. When I returned about a year later, the country had changed. Heavily armed military all over the place. Check points in Teguce. Murder rate sky rocketed in San Pedro. I love the people of Honduras, and the ones I’m close with are desperate for their country to do well. For the most part they think highly of the USA. The biggest change I saw in ten years of going there was that technology was having a huge impact on the culture. They are literally coming out of the jungle and into the industrial revolution. I saw good and bad aspects of it. Huts in the jungle have solar panels so they can have light at night. Villages in the jungle are putting street lights on their dirt roads. I’ll never forget walking into a jungle hut and hearing U2 singing, “Where the Streets Have No Names”. Kids are desperate to get out of the jungle and out of the slums. From what I saw- and from the kids I know that came here illegally it was to get a chance at prosperity not to get away from violence. But that’s just anecdotal, of course.

  12. Mild - ly Facetious
    June 22, 2018 at 7:54 pm

    Thank You, Mr. Nevins, for setting the record straight on the ruthless USA stranglehold on Central American governance, economic policy and absolute disdain for the human rights of Central American Tribal, Civil, and Human Rights.

    Many US citizens don’t know of the abusive, disdainful treatment suffered under US SCHOOL OF THE AMERICAS atrocities against the peaceful Central American Indigenous Indians and citizens who’d lived in peace as simple farmers before US murderous interventions and violent sector takeovers where Native Peoples lived in peace as farmers and hunters/ natives of the soil with a history of their own. — Our adventurism in Central America began in 1953, when the “United Fruit ” company deemed to overthrow the peace, and, backed by the United States Military, executed a Corporate/Military takeover of that prosperous enterprise, and, in the process, executed an early CIA forced economic coup d’ etat —– the first of many Brutal military takeovers to follow in many parts of the world.

    Trump is only the most recent American “Beggar At The Banquet” — –

  13. June 22, 2018 at 12:55 pm

    Foreign investment is always a two edged sword for the general populace in such countries as Honduras Our policy of allowing much of our foreign investment to be accompanied by our military presence and control is unfortunate. A more enlightened investment policy by the US is in order, where short runs gains of the present policy are replaced by one that recognizes the value of strong and independent neighbors..

    • Sam F
      June 22, 2018 at 1:27 pm

      Yes. Part of the problem is that foreign investment in small countries often focuses on one or two export crops (e.g. bananas and coffee) and a small number of companies with economic power greater than the national government. The US has done nothing to regulate its foreign investors to ensure equitable conduct overseas. So those countries see constant cheating on taxes, economic subversion of democracy, conspiracy in military coups, export of profits needed by the producer nation, etc. The result is disaster caused entirely by rich US tyrants.

      US foreign investors must be regulated and taxed with benefits to the poorest population of producer nations. This should be a UN requirement and taxation power. The US dictatorship of the rich blocks all reform measures.

      • Piotr Berman
        June 23, 2018 at 9:39 pm

        I think that a major problem is that the policy on foreign trade and foreign investments is totally skewed toward benefits of investors rather than the public, both in USA and countries where the jobs are created. Thus there is international competition to offer: (a) least wages (b) least worker rights, lest their disrupt production by demanding wages, less humiliating conditions etc. Worker rights are rather skimpy in USA, so to require some standards on the countries that export to USA, one would need to enforce them at home. The result is that most work intensive industries concentrate in Bangladesh and a country like Honduras must offer equally wretched conditions. But when they do, surprise surprise, many prefer illegal jobs in USA, not to mention that even wretched industrial jobs are not plentiful, they represent scraps, I guess textile companies do not want to put all chips on Bangladesh and Indonesia.

        More elaborate products are produced in countries with better education and infrastructure like China and Vietnam, and Honduras, Haiti and Guatemala are not considered, so they have to compete with Bangladesh and Indonesia, perhaps with slightly higher wages.

        On one hand, offering better worker rights can collapse manufacturing because factories can be moved to countries that offer better deals for investors and Western importers. But maintaining competitive edge on that basis requires repressive and corrupt government, and that keeps the unfortunates in Central America from advancing to the next tier (China, Vietnam), because education and infrastructure does not improve.

        I think agriculture is similar in that respect, although competition to offer most wretched condition to agro worker is more restricted to Western hemisphere. I think monoculture is less of a problem, these countries also provide a variety of produce, fruits, flowers etc, but the system that “efficiently” squeezes the last penny manages to keep high prices in the supermarkets and very low wages in the fields.

  14. vinnieoh
    June 22, 2018 at 9:24 am

    With this I should amend my comment on the “Border Angels” thread that the current imbroglio is a Trumpian manufactured crisis. This current SPECTACLE is indeed a product of Trump and his minions, but as most can see it portrays the false narrative that the problem lies at the US/Mexico border. Many of Trump’s base are blindered jingoists who would probably never accept the real history (and the lessons and conclusions) of US “leadership” in the western hemisphere.

    • j. D. D.
      June 22, 2018 at 10:32 am

      Ala Hillary Clinton, you are quick to condemn Trump’s blue-collar base which has suffered enormously from the outsourcing of manufacturing under the guise of British “free trade” ideology, but not the financial oligarchy which caused it. A huge part of this plan was competition for fewer and fewer jobs and lower and lower costs of labor, world-wide. Immigrants fleeing certain death and suffering in countries deliberately starved of actual development by the IMF and World Bank, have been driven to undertake life-threatening journeys into the advanced sector, driving wages down even further in the new host countries. There was inevitable and absolutely predictable resentment from the former middle and working classes in the host countries as they descended into the gig economy and poverty. Among the new arrivals were murderous gangsters, such as MS-13, who brought their brand of vicious killing and rape to their new “homes.” The entirely fake and completely unnecessary “immigration” issue, with all its racist and deadly connotations, was created and continues to be played by the puppet masters.yet the confrontation on our southern border is hardly a new problem. Since 2016, 110,000 children and 200,000 Central American families have entered the United States illegally. President Obama used forceful measures to stop this but his apparent “cruelty” escaped media attention. Ask the crazed Democrats what they have done about the genocidal conditions in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras, countries which have been turned into failed narco-states ruled by violent gangs in a murderous replica of the feudalism and marches of death which characterized the Middle Ages.These are the same Democrats who have no plan for the economic growth in those nations which would actually solve the problem but instead play the fake game of “identity politics” in which people of color are set against “recalcitrant” white people in a war of each against all.

      • Skip Scott
        June 22, 2018 at 1:52 pm

        j.D.D.-

        You are correct that Trump cannot be blamed for the long story, and that neither party has done anything to change our horrible foreign policy regarding trade and economic development. Both parties are serving the globalists and the war machine. I do chastise Trump for using these kids as pawns in his desire to pressure Congress. He has a nearly impossible task ahead of him if he wants to pursue the nationalist agenda he campaigned on, but it isn’t the fault of the kids or the 90+ pct of migrants who are good people fleeing horrendous conditions at home. Trump should use his bully pulpit to explain this to the American people, and challenge Congress to pass legislation that addresses the root causes of our immigration problem. If it weren’t for our evil empire, these people would be living happy lives in their home country.

      • vinnieoh
        June 22, 2018 at 3:30 pm

        I thought maybe I used the word jingoist incorrectly, but after checking that is exactly the word I meant to use. I’m well aware of Obama’s immigration record and there are as many jingoists in the aging Democratic base. If this immediate spectacle was intended by the administration to energize Trump’s base, then this border focus does nothing to address everything you spelled out. And in the midst of this if the government attempts covert or overt operations that would make things worse – and they are in Nicaragua and Venezuela – then a large segment of long-suffering blue collar America (both R’s & D’s) will wave flags, put magnetic ribbons on their cars, and cheer if they send in the Marines. US government efforts and pronouncements in Nicaragua and Venezuela are indistinguishable between the Obama and Trump administrations, and are sure to worsen these very problems at the heart of this – spectacle. I agree that the Democrats are holding high the pathos and the pain in one hand, and their other hand is empty.

        I voted for neither Clinton nor Trump. Hillary already displayed her militarist bona fides wrt Central America (and elsewhere,) and I believed that Trump would be so far out of his depth that he would be easily maneuvered by the MIC and the colonialist raiders that operate under that umbrella. And in the end that the US hegemon would continue on undisturbed by either outcome. But just supposing for argument that Trump is using his one best talent – to create spectacle – in order to break the stalemate on immigration. If so, then we should all watch carefully how the sausage is being made. I’m guessing the chief inspector will deem any product unfit for consumption that doesn’t contain more funding for the wall. Popular in some quarters, but in the end ineffective and wasteful, like building higher dikes around the Mississippi when it will be the Gulf that eventually floods New Orleans.

        I appreciate your irritation at my comment that seemed to repeat the mantra of Democratic establishment identity politics. I live in the deepest heart of Trump country, in the Upper Ohio Valley, the impact area of much US de-industrialization along the very processes you outlined above. So it always amazes me that no matter what happens, that much of the blue collar working class here continues to deify the US military and the princes and captains of finance, because shucks they’re obviously rich and successful. Though retired, I’ve always been blue collar working class. Since Trump is in power, the dynamic between he and his base is impactful, and if his base would take up the issues you raise, some things might move forward. Unfortunately they won’t, and it isn’t necessarily partisan to point that out. The same silence of the base attended Obama, so I guess the choice to be selectively blind, deaf and mute depends on whose champion is in the WH.

      • D. B. L. A.
        June 23, 2018 at 12:30 am

        Look at the origin of the MS 13 gang. I lived in Los Angeles when they formed there. Then I watched them be deported to El Salvador and Honduras where there was no structure to police gangs.

      • RickD
        June 25, 2018 at 7:39 am

        MS-13 was born here you might understand, or not. Gang members deported back brought the gang with them where it thrived.
        Thew statistical evidence shows plainly that immigrant populations have far less crime than indigenous ones. Many illegals work jobs no American would seek as well.

        Trump companies are an outsourcer of manufacturing as well, hypocrisy abounds. Further, Trump has used bigotry and hatred to exacerbate theproblem and sidetrack his heinous use of the White House as a profit center.

  15. June 22, 2018 at 9:20 am

    June 21, 2018

    The Children

    Don’t separate children and parents is the “righteous” cry
    While some of those saying this, drop bombs from the sky
    Hypocrites criticizing hypocrites is a sight for all to see
    As they slaughter many children in lands across the sea

    Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Gaza and other places as well
    Are drenched in blood, where the bodies of parents and their children fell
    Other children still alive, drown in the Mediterranean Sea
    Trying to escape the bloody horrors; trying to find serenity

    Many children have lost their parents, killed by western wars
    “Don’t separate the children, from parents,” say the war criminal whores
    Dressed in suits and dresses with fancy titles to their names
    You can see these villains daily on TV; they have no ethics or shame

    If there really was a justice system these bandits would be arrested
    Instead they posture on the world stage, and to their whims we are subjected
    So-called “leaders” of the so-called “democratic” free world
    Creators of hell on earth with their hypocrisy banners unfurled

    “They want to help the children,” many of them all, posture and say
    At the same time destroying the countries where the children used to play
    Evil is masquerading, as doing good, while causing endless destruction
    Our “leaders” and others need be arrested for what they have done to The Children…

    [more info on this at link below]
    http://graysinfo.blogspot.com/2018/06/the-children.html

    • mike k
      June 22, 2018 at 9:35 am

      Excellent poem Stephen. You expose the evil afoot in our world brilliantly. Your work goes right to the root of our problems – rampant cynical, selfish, value free materialism. The appropriate headline is: EVIL LEADERS DESTROY WORLD!

      • June 22, 2018 at 12:31 pm

        Thanks mike k. Evil is mass producing evil.
        Cheers Stephen J.

    • Sam F
      June 22, 2018 at 1:16 pm

      Thank you! The Central America slaughters were largely due to the Repub fear of socialism, especially under Reagan, while the Dems joined in enthusiastically in the Mideast to get campaign bribes from their zionist sponsors. Those who deplore the export of immigrants appear to be largely Dem Trump-haters, while the Repub leaders want more cheap immigrant labor, even while their base wants less labor competition.

      • KiwiAntz
        June 22, 2018 at 6:23 pm

        Yeah, the Repubs need more immigrants because who’s going to clean the bathrooms & offices on Trumps Spaceforce station in outer Space! Flash Gordon Trump & his SPACCEFORCE soldiers, sure as hell won’t do those menial tasks!

        • KiwiAntz
          June 22, 2018 at 6:28 pm

          Sorry forgot to add Queens classic song? Flash TRUMP! AHHH! Saviour of the Universe! With SPACEFORCE, in SPACCCE! Sounds like a corny B grade movie doesn’t it. Now all we need is Machete to join the Spaceforce! HOO RA!

  16. j. D. D.
    June 22, 2018 at 8:29 am

    I applaud the author’s attempt at rational discussion of the root causes of the migrant crisis which is causing people to risk everything, to leave their homes, which is effecting not only the US, but Europe as well. It is made nearly impossible at times by the non-stop photos of children beibg ripped from their mother’s arms, some taken in 2014, but now being used by demagogues to inflame hatred of President Trump at a time when he has made a major step forward to solving the Korean crisis and bringing about a dramatic shift in US policy. The role of the US government, in particulary that of President Obama and Hillary Clinton has been glossed over, and the neglect or outright destruction of the economies south of our borders is rarely addressed. Nor is the obvious comparison to Europe in which millions are fleeing the regime change wars and poverty caused by the policies of the West. Yet, the solution to both situations is right in front of us. We, as well as the nations of Europe, must commit to ending these wars and to pursuing a policy of the infrastructure and the economic development of the Americas and Africa, giving the people of those countries a reason to remain in their homes and joining in the rebuilding.This can best be done in cooperation with China, which has already begun this process through its Belt and RoadIntitative. By engaging in joint development projects in third countries with China. the US and Europe can solve the immigration crisis and the balance of payments issue at the same time. And even though the stain of our sins toward those counries, especially in Africa, can never be removed, perhaps we can reclaim a bit or the morality and the so-called “Western values.” of which we have made a mockery.

  17. David G
    June 21, 2018 at 11:12 pm

    Is it a coincidence that Nicaragua – the most successful of the Central American states at keeping the U.S. at arm’s length for the past 40 years – is also the one not exporting masses of desperate people northward?

    Naturally the U.S. establishment perceives even a single exception to the mandated misery as a pest to be eradicated. Ergo:

    “US Gov. Meddling Machine Boasts of ‘Laying the Groundwork for Insurrection’ in Nicaragua” by Max Blumenthal –
    https://grayzoneproject.com

    • Mario Flores
      June 23, 2018 at 2:56 am

      Nicaragua is also the poorest and is controlled by a dictator.

      • David G
        June 23, 2018 at 3:11 am

        Yes, it is poor. And yet people stay because they have achieved some measure of national sovereignty and a dignified life despite the U.S.’s unrelenting efforts.

        “Dictator” = any national leader who doesn’t dance to the U.S.’s tune, and forget about whether they were elected (see pre-2014 Ukraine, Russia, Venezuela, and of course Nicaragua)

        • Mario Flores
          June 29, 2018 at 3:47 pm

          Well look at all the protests taking place now. The regime in Nicaragua is using violence to stop them.

  18. Sam F
    June 21, 2018 at 10:01 pm

    I supported an orphan in Honduras in the 1980s, and watched as the corrupt US government destroyed the country to destroy Nicaragua, to attack socialism anywhere, in fear of socialism in the US. The child’s potential in life was destroyed by the US oligarchy, solely for their amusement.

    The article mentions LaFeber’s “Inevitable Revolutions” which is a very thorough and readable background on US fascism in Central America. It has achieved absolutely nothing for the US, and has ruined the lives of millions of innocents, like all US interventions around the world since WWII. US militarism is the toy of the dictatorship of the rich. Where would we be without our gangsters? Praise be to Gold!

    • June 22, 2018 at 8:27 am

      I guess the bright side is that geez, us humans and our sane societies must be really bloody powerful when we’re allowed to be!

  19. christina garcia
    June 21, 2018 at 9:50 pm

    Somehow , we do not like to face our collective history. I am 54 year old German/Mexican . Years ago people asked me how I couId have accepted Hitler.. Duh, I was negative 30 or 40 years old , yet people still held me accountable for my grandparent’s generation. I will definitely hold all of us no matter what age, accountable for the atrocities that we are committing today. Just as Germany was collectively responsible, so too are we. We are responsible for our horrid acts. Grow up USA, you are not innocent. Say sorry and make financial/social amends. We Germans have learned. We usa citizens have not learned.

    • Sam F
      June 21, 2018 at 10:12 pm

      Yes, we are accountable for knowing, or at least being willing to be enlightened, although we have no more opportunity to change policies than Hitler’s subjects, under our dictatorship of the rich. But we will be held to account by history, for the ultimate meaning of our lives will be that we did not correct our government.

    • MBeaver
      June 22, 2018 at 9:27 am

      We Germans have not learned. Why are we supporting fascists again and again at least tolerate a fascist government?
      Its blind loyalty again. Its goes as far that people actually attack people who criticize Merkel in the sense of “how dare you!”.

    • Bob Van Noy
      June 22, 2018 at 10:27 am

      You are right christina garcia, we do not like to face our collective history, but here in America we have an additional problem, we don’t know our history. Our history is lost in a propaganda barrage and we’re only sorting it out right now. And, what we’re finding is not pretty. Not only do we not know our own history, but we have a severely distorted view of World History.

      It may sound incredible to an outsider, even to a majority of Americans, but the Propaganda has Worked; Americans really have little idea about what our government has done. We will have to relearn History before we decide what to do about it. Thus, a Truth And Reconciliation Commission will be necessary.
      Thank you…

      • June 25, 2018 at 9:56 am

        Bob Van Noy – I couldn’t agree more Bob. Thanks.

    • June 25, 2018 at 9:55 am

      Christina Garcia – great post Christina. As a child and a young adult I used to wonder how things like chattel slavery, the genocide of Native peoples and the holocaust could have happened. I no longer wonder about such things. It is now quite clear that the vast majority of the American people spend a good deal of their own personal psychic energy repressing, denying and minimizing what they know or suspect regarding the monstrous behavior of the U.S. government and therefore our collective complicity in global murder and mayhem.

      A quote from Charles de Gaulle sums up the situation in America quite well I think. After returning from JFK’s funeral de Gaulle told his information minister he knew Kennedy’s assassination was carried out by the state itself, but that the American people would not have the stomach to face the truth of this. Of the American people de Gaulle stated: “they don’t want to know. They don’t want to find out. They won’t let themselves find out.” Those words are as true today as the day they were spoken when it comes to the collective and personal denial by most Americans of our sponsorship and complicity in ongoing atrocities around the globe as a matter of policy. Most Americans “won’t let themselves find out.”

  20. mike k
    June 21, 2018 at 9:12 pm

    The cruelty of America is beyond measure.

  21. jose
    June 21, 2018 at 8:18 pm

    I would say that the thesis of this great article is the last paragraph in which the author states that for those staying behind violence and poverty awaits them. In the mean time, the main culprit, US, raises its right hand and points to Central American countries for their fate. The irony is inescapable.

  22. jose
    June 21, 2018 at 7:57 pm

    This is a very incise and accurate article shedding light on the chief cause of massive migration from Central America to the US. I recall in the 80’s how the US turned the heat up on Central America creating a torture chamber with thousands murdered. I would add Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala, and even Mexico along side Honduras. Examples of the consequences of foreign intervention abound and when the chickens come back to roost, the victims are to blame.

    • Sam F
      June 21, 2018 at 10:17 pm

      Yes, and our subversion of socialist governments there, and our creation and support of criminal gangs, has no doubt caused much of the crime and suffering. The US knows only how to steal and destroy, and pretends that this is productivity and construction.

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