The News
Wednesday 24 of April 2024

Wall for DREAMers: Fake News?

Supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) chant slogans and hold signs while joining a Labor Day rally in downtown Los Angeles on Monday, Sept. 4, 2017,photo: AP/Richard Vogel
Supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) chant slogans and hold signs while joining a Labor Day rally in downtown Los Angeles on Monday, Sept. 4, 2017,photo: AP/Richard Vogel
This sounds like “fake news” by the NYT

The fact that the White House has deployed a permanent terror campaign against Mexico is not a secret. For the past two and a half years President Donald Trump has been bashing the nation with everything he’s got, gaining an enormous voting audience in the United States, much to the chagrin of Democrats and needless to say, Mexicans.

The latest onslaught came from a news article in The New York Times last Sept. 14 quoting White House Chief of Staff General John. K. Kelly comparing Mexico to Venezuela as a failed state. Maybe the issue was not big news in Washington, but in Mexico it was a splash still making waves.

The source of the story was a passionate defense Kelly was supposed to have made of President Trump’s stupid border wall before adamant opponents from the Democratic Party Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi and Senator Chuck Schumer. Mexico, Kelly allegedly said “is on the verge of collapse” right now.

In Monday’s column this writer pointed out that this sounded pretty much like a version of “fake news” by the NYT and that up until then nobody had claimed it wasn’t.

But over the weekend, Mexico Foreign Relations Secretary Luis Videgaray said the Mexican Embassy in Washington had received assurances from the White House that Kelly never said such a thing, quoting Mexican Ambassador Gerónimo Gutiérrez who indeed made the article look like a tirade and an invention of reporters Maggie Haberman and Glenn Thrush. However, personally knowing how serious the New York daily newspaper is, perhaps the best course to follow is the middle-of-the-road — half truth, half fake news.

The issue is that on Monday several columnists in Mexico went on to claim that the quote was correct and that what Kelly was trying to do was not to intimidate Mexico but to put pressure on Pelosi and Schumer to side with President Trump and release funds for the wall and in exchange there would be sympathy to bring the DREAMer quagmire to a suitable end, granting all 800,000 of them amnesty so that they can go on their path to becoming U.S. citizens legally.

In short, wall for DREAMers. Would it sound to you like a fair deal particularly when The Donald has failed in every move he has made to fund the wall as it was clear that the $6 billion in the budget had been agreed long before as part of border security moves made by the Obama Administration.

This is at least the claim of Excelsior columnist Leo Zuckerman who is one of the more serious commentators around.

Zuckerman says that if General Kelly was just backing up his boss to force “the Democrats to accept the infamous border wall with Mexico in exchange for bringing the DREAMers problem to a definite solution.” It would be a case of “pure and hard ball politicking.”

But if it was true that Kelly “is convinced Mexico is on the brink of collapse, that we are becoming a failed state, not so much for the threat that a populist and demagogue leader arrives at the presidency as Chávez did in Venezuela (or for that matter, like Trump), but because of the existing violence in our country and the incompetence of the state to solve it,” that is something to be preoccupied about.

Now if Trump had said that he would build the wall, deport the DREAMers and cancel the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), nobody in Mexico would even bat an eyelid.

The real worry is that it is General Kelly being quoted and this is a man who knows the border infinitely better than his boss, as he has led the Northern Command which includes the Canadian, the United States and Mexican armies and as such Kelly sees the porous border as a hot spot that if in trouble, will have an inexorable impact on the United States.

On the issue of the wall, President Enrique Peña Nieto has clearly stated the Mexican government’s position. If The Donald wants to build it, he’s got every right to do so as long as he does not invade Mexican territory.

But in the deportation of the DREAMers’ case, indeed that could create a social problem in Mexico as these kids may be the children of Mexican parents but theirs is a gringo mentality. Could they adapt to Mexico? The answer may be yes, but it won’t come easy.

And the third option, cancelling NAFTA, well that’s being negotiated and jumping the gun on the issue is not currently an option.

The fact that Mexico may get a “populist and demagogue” president next year — and this is in reference to future left wing candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador — is a matter of panic only to “the mafia in power,” as López Obrador says, who has claimed that “he is a threat to Mexico” but that’s just electioneering rhetoric which I am sure General Kelly is not even interested in right now, but will be if indeed López Obrador gets elected.

There’s a long trek ahead for this, but the question of the day is, was Kelly’s “leaked” news to the NYT fake news? At least Ambassador Gutiérrez claims that his White House contacts say so.