America’s Dirty War on Immigrant Children

Photograph by Nathaniel St. Clair

“These aren’t people. These are animals”

– Donald Trump, May 17, 2018

President Trump is right about one thing: there is an emergency; indeed we would call it a humanitarian catastrophe at the U.S. Southern Border.[1] It is also a demographic, political and moral catastrophe However, the chaotic ‘solutions’ devised by former Attorney General Sessions and embraced by ICE and Homeland Security has brought us ever deeper into the unthinkable, Primo Levi’s ‘Grey Zone’. Nine months after a federal judge ordered the Trump administration to reunite thousands of immigrant children taken from their parents at the border, the whereabouts of thousands of children remains unresolved. Some 15,000 migrant children are in government detention. That figure is growing by the day as the number of migrant families crossing southern border reached an 11-year high this February with “unauthorized entries nearly double what they were a year ago.”[2] The most recent Border Patrol data shows that 76,103 migrants were apprehended at the border—two thirds more than during the prior month.[3] More than 40,000 were families travelling together. Children and newborns continue to be taken from their parents even as the Administration claims to have rescinded the order to forcibly separate migrant families.[4]

America’s littlest desaparecidos, some of them still in diapers, crying inconsolably, begging and screaming for their mothers,…

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