SHREVEPORT — I’ve been following the border crisis story with interest for some time now, and as I was doing some research for a post on SIGIS yesterday, a disturbing pattern began to emerge.
Not that it’s any surprise, but the feds are, almost without exception, extremely secretive about where the illegal Central American refugees are being relocated. Not just that, but it seems that the entire “medical screening” process has “broken down.”
What to make of this?
In many cases local and state governments aren’t even being consulted or made aware of incoming aliens (and I call them illegal aliens because they aren’t, in fact, refugees as defined by federal code.)
The Florida Department of Health has received unconfirmed reports that the federal government is bringing unaccompanied minors from the border to Florida today. On July 17, we received unconfirmed information that dozens of children were being brought by plane into Miami on Friday. This same day, ABC news reported that “the federal government is so overwhelmed by the current tide of migrants crossing the border it cannot provide basic medical screening to all of these children before transporting them, often by air, to longer-term holding facilities across the country.” (Feds Struggling to Cope with Medical ‘Breakdown’ at the Border, ABC News, July 17, 2014.)
Many of these people are coming across the border with contagious illnesses and in some cases the agents working in these refugee centers aren’t going home to their own families at the end of the day in order to avoid spreading disease to their own children:
Multiple sources working out of Border Patrol stations throughout Texas have reported that due to fear that their families will contract one of the many diseases being seen at the facilities in a large number of the thousands of men, women and children coming across the border on a daily basis, many of the agents are no longer returning home when their shifts end. Unwilling to expose their own children to a host of highly contagious diseases, agents are reportedly renting rooms in local motels (at their own expense), rather than returning to their homes.
It’s not just the state of Florida that is concerned; in Louisiana, Representative Fleming and Representative Bill Cassidy are among members of the state’s congressional delegation that have requested health status information and have attempted to find out how many and where any of these immigrants are being placed in Louisiana.
So far, the government isn’t saying much about where these illegals are going or about their medical status.
The eruption of weekend protests across the nation indicates that most Americans want these questions answered before these people take up residence in their neighborhoods or enroll in the local schools this fall.
“What it really comes down to is xenophobia and racism,” said Amelia Ruiz Fischer, a lawyer at the Texas Civil Rights Project, a nonprofit law firm that works on issues including immigration. “That might sound like a pretty extreme way to characterize it, but why else would you not want children who are not public safety risks and who are fleeing their countries trying to save their lives — why else wouldn’t you want them housed?”
…I think most parents want to first ensure the safety and health of their own families. The government now needs to take this concern to heart as well.
One of the things that seemingly doesn’t make sense is the unwillingness to simply admit that the shooting down of the Malaysian Airliner was an accident of war?
You have Ukraine suggesting this was an act of terror (it wasn’t) you have people insisting Russia must pay, you have the Russian Backed rebels moving bodies and seizing black boxes and you have diplomatic outrage everywhere.
One would think that the easiest thing to do would be to simply put out a humble statement saying something like:
“We apologize for the accidental shooting down of the Malaysian airliner mistaking it for n enemy aircraft. We regret the innocent loss of life and offer our sincere and heartfelt apologies to the families who were killed in this tragic mistake.
We will take all possible measures to prevent this in the future and would welcome to cooperation of those who monitor and plot international air travel to aid in both keeping aircraft out of the war zone and informing us if a passenger jet comes into said space.”
To the average person this would seem to be an ideal solution, while such contrition would not be enough to satisfy the families it would allow Russia’s foes in the west to consider honor satisfied leaving the families to go through the international courts for any monetary claims (and that could take decades). Instant de-escalation pressure off the Russians and the rebels, problem seemingly solved.
Except Russia can’t allow that to be done.
Not because of the price they would pay internationally but because of the price at home.
One of the hallmarks of the old Soviet Union has been the control of the press, Under Putin Russia has returned to the days where the Russian public is fed daily a full diet of propaganda.
on Ukraine there’s one message – that the violence in eastern Ukraine is all Kiev’s fault, that Ukraine is crawling with Russia-hating neo-Nazis and fascists, and that it’s the US government which is fuelling the crisis behind the scenes, while Russia tries to act as peacemaker.
“Aggressive and deceptive propaganda… worse than anything I witnessed in the Soviet Union,” is the verdict of Lev Gudkov, the director of the Levada Centre, Russia’s most well respected polling organisation.
That piece is from June and we’ve talked about Putin playing the useful idiot game in the west as far back as last year.
Putin cut his eye teeth in the KGB you can bet your bottom dollar that he knows what he’s doing. That vast majority of the world is on a different page than the west on Gay Marriage, and cultural issues but Putin’s words are strictly utilitarian as Stacy McCain put it earlier this week when writing about Russia’s slow regression back to Totalitarianism:
Anti-American propaganda may actually be based on factual reporting. There are things our government does, especially in the area of foreign policy and national security, which we don’t necessarily endorse. However, these actions must be understood in an international context. What are our nation’s enemies and rivals doing? Our nation’s policies cannot be viewed in a vacuum, and especially we cannot permit propaganda by hostile powers to suggest that the United States is uniquely evil, so as to undermine our prestige, demoralize our citizens and weaken our defenses against aggressors.
Stacy was born in 59, I in 63 so we’re old enough to recognize the cold war game Putin is playing.
Liz Wahl, an anchor on the Kremlin-backed Russia Today, quit during a broadcast on Wednesday, the day after one of her fellow anchors, Abby Martin, caught flak from the network for criticizing Russia’s actions in Crimea. Wahl, the grandchild of refugees from Hungary who fled to America to escape Soviet persecution, said she could not be “part of a network that whitewashes the actions of Putin.”
And that’s the problem, Putin has built a narrative of Russia the good, Russia the strong, Russia the pure. To admit or even acknowledge even accidental fault risks undermining the entire narrative.
Putin’s power is based not only on one lie but an entire empire of lfes. It’s a house of cards like all house of cards the slightest breeze can blow it down and it will take more than the deaths of those 300 on Malaysian air for him to risk even a single Russian child point and him and saying:
“But he hasn’t got anything on!”“
and like the emperor in the story Putin’s only thought is :