Building Borders That Foster Security And Prosperity In North America

5/24/2016 Forbes

san-ysidro-border-crossing-by-flickr-user-otzbergBy Earl Anthony Wayne and Christopher Wilson

Canada, Mexico and the United States are collaborating to enhance security and foster prosperity at North America’s borders, while respecting each nation’s sovereignty.  Prime Minister Trudeau, President Peña Nieto and President Obama can give this effort a big boost when they meet for the North American Leaders Summit (NALS) on June 29 in Canada.  Given the contentious nature of the public and political debates about border security right now, it will be especially important for the leaders to articulate clearly what it means to build twenty-first century borders that are smart, effective, and meet both the security and competitiveness needs of North America. They should also bless a strong, substantive work agenda to make those objectives reality.

The three countries trade some $3.6 billion in goods and services each day.  Over a million citizens of the three nations cross the borders as part of their daily routine.  Border management tasks are enormous.  But, officials, the private sector and the many states, provinces and cities that benefit from border trade and travel see the tremendous value of a North America in which borders are places of connection and cooperation at least as much as division.  Around our borders, the three governments fight illicit activity; help our economies by facilitating legal trade and transit; and work to protect all three societies from threats ranging from terrorism to invasive species and diseases.

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Mexico Prepares to Counter ‘the Trump Emergency’

5/22/2016 The New York Times

Border - Mexico

MEXICO CITY — Vicente Fox, the former president of Mexico, was recently stuck in Mexico City traffic, overcome with frustration — not by the congestion, but by something that was irritating him even more: Donald J. Trump. He grabbed his phone, turned the lens on himself and pressed record.

“Ha! Donald,” Mr. Fox said, holding the phone perhaps a little too close to his face. “What about your apologies to Mexico, to Mexicans in the United States, to Mexicans in Mexico?”

In short order, the 15-second clip was on Mr. Fox’s Twitter feed — another salvo in a personal campaign against the American presidential candidate that has included television appearances, radio interviews and a fusillade of hectoring Twitter posts.

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UPCOMING EVENT | What Do Mexicans Think About the U.S. and the World? Results from Mexico, the Americas, and the World 2014-2015

globe north south americaWHEN: Tuesday, May 31, 2016, 3:00-5:00pm

WHERE: 5th Floor Conference Room, Wilson Center

Click to RSVP

The Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute is pleased to invite you to our event “What Do Mexicans Think About the U.S. and the World? Results from Mexico, the Americas, and the World 2014-2015.” Mexico, the Americas, and the World is a public opinion research project undertaken by the Division of International Studies at the Center for Research and Teaching in Economics (CIDE) in Mexico City. The survey, carried out biannually in Mexico since 2004 (and elsewhere in Latin American since 2008), seeks to understand Mexicans’ and Latin Americans’ views on foreign policy and international relations—in a word, on their place in the world. The 2014-2015 edition finds that, among other things, fewer Mexicans report having family members that live abroad and receiving remittances. Despite the rise of anti-immigration sentiment in the U.S., Mexicans’ evaluations of “Colossus to the North” have continued to rise since 2010—apparently an “Obama effect.” Finally, faced with a grave human rights crisis, Mexicans are willing to accept supervision on rights from the UN, OAS, and even—to some extent—from the United States. Two researchers from CIDE will present and discuss the report’s findings.

Speakers
Gerardo Maldonado
Center for Research and Teaching in Economics (CIDE)

David Crow
Center for Research and Teaching in Economics (CIDE)

Moderator
Duncan Wood
Director, Mexico Institute, Wilson Center

Click to RSVP

The immigrants still ‘California Dreamin’

5/18/16 BBC

CaliforniaA group of drunken men are loitering on the pavement outside Claudia’s block of flats in San Francisco. In the run-down lobby, visitors are greeted by a broken fridge.

The studio flat Claudia shares with her two young daughters though is tidy and homely.

Claudia fled from a violent partner and became homeless. She has been rehoused by a San Francisco charity but her problems are far from over.

‘Fearful for my children’

Claudia does not want to give me her full name because she is one of the more than 11 million undocumented migrants living in the US, and she is worried by the political rhetoric in the presidential race.

“What Donald Trump said shocked me very much because I’m Mexican,” she says.

“I’m fearful that my children would have to fend for themselves because he would want to deport me.”

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ACLU alleges ‘unchecked abuse’ at U.S.-Mexico border

5/17/16 CNN

fence at border(CNN)A complaint filed Tuesday accuses U.S. officers of “unchecked abuse” at the border.

Several Mexican women claim they were arbitrarily detained and strip-searched, and never told why they’d been singled out. A U.S. citizen alleges that an officer yanked his 11-year-old son’s arm, causing a hairline fracture. A legal permanent resident of the United States says an officer screamed at her and falsely accused her of being a fugitive.
Those allegations are among 13 cases documented in a complaint the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Border Communities Coalition has filed with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The administrative complaint, lodged Tuesday, accuses officers from U.S. Customs and Border Protection of “systemic abuse” and rights violations at several entry points between Mexico and the United States.
“It really mocks our American values of justice and fairness,” said Cynthia Pompa, a field organizer at the ACLU of New Mexico Regional Center for Border Rights. “And it shows that this agency really lacks oversight and accountability.”
DHS did not comment on the ACLU allegations.
Allegations in the complaint include:
• A 51-year-old Mexican woman says officers falsely accused her of being a prostitute and forced her to sign a false confession. She signed it because she didn’t understand English very well, according to the complaint. The confession, the complaint alleges, had her barred from entering the United States for five years.

Half a Ton of Marijuana Found in Coconuts at U.S.-Mexico Border

5/13/2016 NBC News 

drugsMore than 1,400 pounds of marijuana was found hidden inside fresh coconuts at the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas, Customs and Border Protection said Thursday.

A total of 2,486 packages of alleged marijuana were concealed inside the coconuts, which were part of a commercial shipment inside a tractor-trailer traveling from Mexico to the United States, theCBP said in a statement.

The drug was discovered Monday at the Pharr International Bridge cargo facility near Hidalgo, with the help of a canine team. The shipment was referred for a scan known as a “non-intrusive imaging inspection.”

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 These Haunting Photos Show the Deadly Absurdity of the US-Mexico Border Wall

5/11/2016 The Nation 

A small fence separates densely populated Tijuana, Mexico, right, from the United States in the Border Patrol’s San Diego Sector.  Construction is underway to extend a secondary fence over the top of this hill and eventually to the Pacific Ocean.
A small fence separates densely populated Tijuana, Mexico, right, from the United States in the Border Patrol’s San Diego Sector. Construction is underway to extend a secondary fence over the top of this hill and eventually to the Pacific Ocean.

The “wall” along the US-Mexico border has always been more a weapon than a barricade. Since the implementation of Border Patrol’sPrevention through Deterrence program in the mid 1990s—which built up the wall in urban areas to force border crossers into ever more remote and deadly terrain—the effort to stop or control migration across the US-Mexico border has proven to be as patently absurd as it is murderous.

The results—the death and disappearance of thousands of border crossers—are not surprising. In fact, the tragedy was part of the plan—the harrowing experience of crossing the desert was meant to deter further attempts at migration. Instead, with the locking in of free-trade economics, climate change, and abusive US-backed regimes in Mexico and Central America, migrants have not stopped moving north in search of asylum and economic security. Today’s hysterical cries to build a wall across nearly 2,000 miles of treacherous and varied terrain—cleaving through communities, cutting into ecosystems, and severing traditional lands—is as inhumane as it is impossible. But while a 2,000-mile “wall” as a functional barricade is delusion, an increasingly militarized zone with sprouting segments of easily traversable fencing (there are now approximately 700 miles in place) however, is the deadly reality.

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