June 19, 2018

COLOMBIA: Colombia's Poor And Expats Living In The U.S. Rejected Marxist Communism/Socialism In Sunday's Election, Big Time, Out Of A Credible Fear Of 'Another Venezuela'. Yay! 😊👏💞

American Thinker
written by Monica Showalter
Tuesday June 19, 2018

Sunday's election of a hardcore conservative in Colombia has left the media elites and their pundits befuddled.

Some are calling Ivan Duque, the 41-year-old new conservative president-elect a "populist" as if to suggest that both President Trump and the late unlamented Venezuelan strongman, Hugo Chávez, are all dreadful peas in the same pod. Others are speculating that Colombia elected another Emmanuel Macron, as if France's youthful, namby-pamby president amounted to a comparable sea change to what this election represents. We heard of the new president summed up as "pro-business" by the Wall Street Journal, as if that was all he meant to voters, and more pointedly still, summed up as "right-wing" by Agence France-Presse and National Public Radio, both of which are clearly displeased. He's also been accused of being a "puppet" of former president Alvaro Uribe, the country's Reagan-like leader from 2002-2010, who put terrorists on the run and changed Colombia's reputation from night-haunted hellhole to success story, even a vacation paradise. The press dutifully spread the puppet stuff far and wide.

The best story I saw comes from a local, on-the-ground source. Here's Colombia Report's headline: "Iconic Medellin slum votes Duque to avoid 'another Venezuela.'"

Now the clarity comes. Poor people voted for a genuine conservative out of terror of becoming another Venezuela, because they know what it is up close. And yes, those are the vaunted poor who for years we have been hearing are so poor that they can vote only for candidates who offer to shovel the most pork. They didn't. And it wasn't even close. Duque won against his opponent, socialist ex-guerrilla and former Hugo Chávez admirer Gustavo Petro, by a margin of about 54-42, according to the New York Times.

That didn't merit any headlines from larger news sources?

It gets worse for the press, because the Colombia Reports story is chock-full of on-the-ground shoe-leather reporting illustrating just that from the poor: an absolutely clear-eyed rejection of socialism, based on the example coming, and coming, out of Venezuela:
"You know what everyone's saying," said Teresita Alvarez, 63, as she walked to the polling station with her daughter and granddaughter.

"He [Petro] could bring Colombia down – he could make it like Venezuela. No one here wants that."

Strangely, both Teresita and her 36-year-old daughter, Liliana, who have always lived in La Sierra, voted for centrist Sergio Fajado the first time round. Their second vote was a massive swing to the right.

Builder Alex Gutierrez, 40, picked Duque for the same reasons.

"We've seen the problems with Venezuela. We don't want to risk that happening here," he said.
The Washington Post also reported similar talk from voters but buried those remarks in its otherwise hand-wringing piece about Duque:
"[Left Wing presidential candidate Gustavo] Petro is another Maduro," said Marta Quintero, a 54-year-old Bogota real estate agent, referring to Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro, whose country is confronting crippling hyperinflation and soaring hunger. "All you need to do is look over our border, at Venezuela, to see that the left is no solution."
That's what the reporters were hearing over there with their own ears, over and over, particularly in Medellín, home to one of the hemisphere's largest shantytowns, ground zero of 1980s cocaine wars, Pablo Escobar, and all sorts of mayhem from its past, which has since calmed down, but it remains no paradise for the poor.

Let's get a look at this: Venezuela's collapse and disintegration are the outcome of socialism wherever it is tried. Venezuelans are going without food, medical care, gasoline, car parts, and pretty much everything else as a result of the signature shortages of socialism, brought on by price and currency controls and exacerbated by falling oil production. That latter problem means that not even welfare handouts, the absolute rationale for resentful populist socialism, are forthcoming. What's more, Venezuelans are swamped in crime, the world's worst; corruption, the world's worst; and hyper-inflation north of 33,000%, once again, the world's worst. Naturally, the people experiencing that are fleeing – and to any place they can. The first stop is Colombia, which harbors at least 600,000 legal refugees and illegal migrants, who are all probably in the same dire circumstances. The New York Times reports that 30,000 Venezuelans are crossing into Colombia per day.

Now, who is most likely to experience Venezuela's vast refugee wave up close and personal, as well as hear from Venezuelans firsthand of the horrors they have experienced under Chavista socialism? That's right: the poor of Colombia's shantytowns. Desperate people connect with other stressed people. By this presidential vote, what we see is that Colombia's poor of the shantytowns pretty much came to the conclusion that they didn't want any of that socialist nightmare near them. No socialist populist yelling about yanqui imperialismo and promises of bags of beans could persuade these very poor people this time to vote for anyone promoting socialism, because the example of Venezuela is that baleful. The very word must stink to them, given what they have heard from the Venezuelans. The siren song of Duque's leftist opponent, Gustavo Petro, a socialist, an ex-guerrilla, an ex-terrorist, someone who has openly admired Hugo Chávez in the past, bearing goodies for the poor, did not persuade these shantytown-dwelling Colombians to vote for him.

That's news.

Since I've been to that very neighborhood, and recommend a good documentary on that 'hood called La Sierra, all I can say is, this represents a sea change, a seismic shift, a broken paradigm that the poor will always side with the socialists because the socialists always side with the poor. That myth is gone now. The poor of Colombia have profoundly rejected socialism. Colombians instead elected their very own version of Donald Trump, who has vowed to cut taxes; has promised to get control of Colombia's borders; has already scared the FARC terrorist guerrillas so bad that they are offering to come to the negotiating table; and, above all, seems to mean to keep Colombia from becoming anything like socialist Venezuela. That's news. ¡Viva Colombia!
U.S. Department of State
Press Statement
Heather Nauert
Department Spokesperson
Washington, DC
June 18, 2018

The United States congratulates Ivan Duque on his election as the next President of Colombia. We salute Colombia’s strong democracy, and reaffirm our admiration for its people and institutions. The United States looks forward to deepening our vibrant partnership based on our shared democratic values.

Colombia continues to be an example of the ideals that inspire our Hemisphere: democracy through free and fair elections with the peaceful participation of all political leaders and parties and accompanied by credible local and international observation; respect for the will of the people; and protection of the fundamental freedoms of association and expression.

We will work with President-elect Duque to support Colombia’s efforts to combat drug trafficking, strengthen security, protect human rights, and secure the just and lasting peace its people deserve.
Public Radio International (PRI.org)
written by Verónica Zaragovia
Friday June 15, 2018

Voting for the next president of Colombia looks deceivingly festive outside the Colombian consulate in Coral Gables, a city in Miami-Dade County, Florida.

Colombians usually have notoriously low voter participation rates, both in Colombia and in the US, but this election has seen a rise in turnout. About 53 percent of voters participated in the first round of presidential elections, according to the National Civil Registry.

On Tuesday, Colombians turned out to cast their ballots in the runoff for the presidency. No candidate won more than 50 percent of the vote in the first round last month.

People hugged and chatted before and after voting. Many wore their World Cup yellow soccer jerseys and sipped coffees from the Colombian coffee shop next door. They took selfies together in front of a large yellow, blue and red Colombian flag on a white voting tent next to the consulate.

Colombian music star Juanes showed up to vote about 1 p.m. and the selfies turned into a frenzy.

The issues involved in this election, though, are serious. The race is between two candidates with very different ideas for the future of Colombia. Election day in Colombia is on Sunday, and voters in the diaspora can cast their ballots at consulates and other designated locations in the week before the official election. All Colombian citizens who registered their Colombian identity card, or cédula, by the March 2018 deadline can vote in this election, even if they have dual citizenship with other countries.

The majority of Colombian voters in Miami support the frontrunner, Iván Duque.

He’s a lawyer who worked at the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington, DC, for many years. He returned to Colombia to serve one term as senator from 2014 to 2018 and now he hopes to replace current President Juan Manuel Santos, who signed a controversial peace treaty in 2016 with what used to be the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, or FARC. Until the signing of the accord, it was Colombia's largest guerrilla group. Now, the FARC is a political party called Fuerza Alternativa Revolucionaria del Común.

“It’s not surprising that Duque won handily the Florida vote during the first round and it’s probably likely that he will win the vote in the second round here in Miami certainly,” says Eduardo Gamarra, a professor at Florida International University who specializes in Latin American politics and the Latino vote. In the past he's done polling in Colombia and on May 17 he moderated a debate at his university in Miami, organized with the Colombian American Chamber of Commerce and featuring representatives of the candidates running for president.

“My sense is that Colombians in exile are concerned about the return of insecurity,” Gamarra says. “They believe that Santos handed over the country to the guerrillas and that's such a predominant point of view here, and it's one that's reinforced by recent arrivals.”

The 2016 peace treaty officially ended 50 years of conflict in Colombia and included concessions to the new political party. FARC members can now run for congress and for the presidency, for instance, a sore issue for many Colombians. They may also perform labor for their crimes, like removing landmines, instead of serving lengthy prison sentences.

Duque wants FARC members convicted of crimes to spend time behind bars before reintegrating into society. His opponent, Gustavo Petro, supports the treaty and was himself a member of another militant group, M-19, that disarmed in 1990.

“It’s like to compare heaven with hell,” says Ernesto Parra, a Duque supporter who left Colombia 20 years ago and lives in Miami. “[Petro is a guerrillero. He has a very dirty past. We don’t want him in Colombia. We are ashamed that he is candidate for Colombian president.”

Petro served a term as Bogotá mayor until 2015 and has not been accused of violence during his M-19 years. His affiliation, though, reminds Parra of why he left Colombia in the first place.
Read the highlight below. It totally sounds like the Marxist Democratic Left in America right now. This is what the Marxist Democratic Left in America have been doing to any person or group that they don't agree with. They harass, intimidate, even threaten all opposition into silence. (emphasis mine)
“I had problems there with bad people in Colombia. They blackmailed me, they threatened my sons, my family and it was impossible to live there,” he says. “So I made the decision to move to the United States, because here we have peace, we have tranquility and I can work here for Colombia better than over there. I love my country.”

Parra wore the yellow Colombia national soccer team jersey when he went out to vote.

Colombians make up the largest percentage of immigrants from South America to the US. In 2014, they numbered 707,000, or 25 percent of South American immigrants, according to the Migration Policy Institute.

The largest population of Colombian-born people in the US, more than 92,000, live in Miami-Dade County.

Rochy Gomez came to the US 25 years ago. Before Florida, she lived in New Jersey for 16 years. She came to the consulate at 8 a.m to vote and talk to people willing to listen about supporting Duque. She stood around until early afternoon, though she was in pain from a recent accident.

“I came like that, with the pain in my arm that goes down to my waist, but I said, ‘I have to go campaign because my country comes first,’” Gomez says. “I tell Colombians, ‘I live in the United States, nothing will happen to me, but you all who are there, that pains me the most.’ I wouldn’t want that, even though I’m better off in the United States.”

She says the economic collapse in Venezuela is a reason to vote against a leftist candidate.

“All of Venezuela is in Miami right now — the ones who could leave, the ones with money,” Gomez says. “Who remained? The poor, eating garbage. They don’t have medicine, children are dying. We don’t want that to happen to our country. Here, none of us are communists. Why? Because we all lived in Colombia during that bad time.”

Being right-wing in Colombian politics means being tough on security, on the FARC and other guerrilla groups still armed like the ELN, or National Liberation Army, explains Brian Winter, the editor-in-chief of Americas Quarterly magazine and the vice president for policy at Americas Society/Council of the Americas.

He says, however, that “there tends to be this misperception in the United States that Colombia was still immersed in a civil war until the peace process was signed, and that’s not true.”

The civil war in Colombia was the longest running internal conflict in the western hemisphere — roughly 52 years until 2016. The conflict was mainly fought between the FARC and the Colombian government. Originally, the guerrillas banded together under a communist ideology to get land for poor people like farmers, and they were reacting to Colombia's massive inequality between rich and poor. Their tactics used to include bombings, hijackings, assassinations and kidnappings, but in recent years that largely ceased.
In no uncertain terms, should what they did, be applauded. I can't believe they're now allowed to run for Congress and the Presidency because of the 'peace treaty" signed in 2016. That's totally insane. (emphasis mine)
Clara Vela in Miami says she’s grateful that Santos managed to make the cessation of violence official by negotiating with the FARC.

She worked as a dentist for decades in Colombia and followed her children to the US six years ago.

“I have no doubt that I support Gustavo Petro,” Vela says. “The act of negotiating with a guerrilla that had a possibility to continue its fight is something I will always thank President Santos for — his political will to sign a peace treaty. For me there was no doubt I would support the candidate who supports the peace treaty, so I chose Gustavo Petro.”

She says that Petro’s vice presidential candidate is an outspoken feminist and that they’re with a party called Colombia Humana, or Humane Colombia. His platform’s main points include environmental protection by getting by making Colombia less oil-dependent. He wants to build up renewable sources like solar energy.

Vela also points to his record on animal rights, such as his ban on bullfighting in the capital during his tenure as mayor of Bogotá. In that time, he also retired hundreds of horses that were used to collect waste on the streets of the city.

“At this point, voting for the other person is taking a terrible step backwards,” Vela says. “For me, Petro’s proposals are about hope, not fear.”

Experts in Miami, though, say the majority is voting based on what they remember Colombia was like in the 1980s, '90s and early 2000s.

Most Colombians immigrated to the US during the '80s and '90s, according to the Migration Policy Institute.

“You add to that the fact that Miami itself has within the Latin American spectrum a very conservative culture because of the Cuban exile community, because of the Venezuelan exile community, because all of these people who have fled either anarchy or leftist tyranny — and so these are not Gustavo Petro voters,” Winter says.

Duque's supporters credit his mentor, Álvaro Uribe, with making Colombia safer. Uribe was president of Colombia from 2002 and 2010. He’s now a senator and a close ally of Duque. Although Uribe reduced the numbers of guerrilla fighters and of kidnappings, critics say he’s at fault for the deaths of many civilians, and his administration is accused of human rights abuses and corruption.

Gamarra, at Florida International University, says that’s not a main concern for Colombians in Miami, and not because they’re insensitive. “They're not concerned that Uribe was a bad guy. What they're concerned about is the fact that Colombia became that country where the greatest risk was that you wanted to stay,” Gamarra says.

A government tourism campaign launched in 2008 — with the slogan, “Colombia, the only risk is wanting to stay” — got a lot of attention. It was a play on the risk that used to keep tourists away, but during Uribe's presidency the violence dropped significantly enough to lure tourists back.

Many Colombians have not returned, though, and leaving was never easy.

“Colombians love their country, and if they’re living abroad it’s painful for them,” Winter says. “The reason most people left is because of security and violence and so the expatriate community is very likely to vote for a candidate who promises security and, hopefully in their mind, paves the way for them to maybe one day want to go home.

USA: The Truth About US Immigration Dept Separating Undocumented Children At The US Border.

The National Review
written by Rich Lowry
Monday May 28, 2018

Some economic migrants are using children as chits, but the problem is fixable — if Congress acts.

he latest furor over Trump immigration policy involves the separation of children from parents at the border.

As usual, the outrage obscures more than it illuminates, so it’s worth walking through what’s happening here.

For the longest time, illegal immigration was driven by single males from Mexico. Over the last decade, the flow has shifted to women, children, and family units from Central America. This poses challenges we haven’t confronted before and has made what once were relatively minor wrinkles in the law loom very large.

The Trump administration isn’t changing the rules that pertain to separating an adult from the child. Those remain the same. Separation happens only if officials find that the adult is falsely claiming to be the child’s parent, or is a threat to the child, or is put into criminal proceedings.

It’s the last that is operative here. The past practice had been to give a free pass to an adult who is part of a family unit. The new Trump policy is to prosecute all adults. The idea is to send a signal that we are serious about our laws and to create a deterrent against re-entry. (Illegal entry is a misdemeanor, illegal re-entry a felony.)

When a migrant is prosecuted for illegal entry, he or she is taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals. In no circumstance anywhere in the U.S. do the marshals care for the children of people they take into custody. The child is taken into the custody of HHS, who cares for them at temporary shelters.

The criminal proceedings are exceptionally short, assuming there is no aggravating factor such as a prior illegal entity or another crime. The migrants generally plead guilty, and they are then sentenced to time served, typically all in the same day, although practices vary along the border. After this, they are returned to the custody of ICE.

If the adult then wants to go home, in keeping with the expedited order of removal that is issued as a matter of course, it’s relatively simple. The adult should be reunited quickly with his or her child, and the family returned home as a unit. In this scenario, there’s only a very brief separation.

Where it becomes much more of an issue is if the adult files an asylum claim. In that scenario, the adults are almost certainly going to be detained longer than the government is allowed to hold their children.

That’s because of something called the Flores Consent Decree from 1997. It says that unaccompanied children can be held only 20 days. A ruling by the Ninth Circuit extended this 20-day limit to children who come as part of family units. So even if we want to hold a family unit together, we are forbidden from doing so.

The clock ticking on the time the government can hold a child will almost always run out before an asylum claim is settled. The migrant is allowed ten days to seek an attorney, and there may be continuances or other complications.

This creates the choice of either releasing the adults and children together into the country pending the ajudication of the asylum claim, or holding the adults and releasing the children. If the adult is held, HHS places the child with a responsible party in the U.S., ideally a relative (migrants are likely to have family and friends here).

Even if Flores didn’t exist, the government would be very constrained in how many family units it can accommodate. ICE has only about 3,000 family spaces in shelters. It is also limited in its overall space at the border, which is overwhelmed by the ongoing influx. This means that — whatever the Trump administration would prefer to do — many adults are still swiftly released.

Why try to hold adults at all? First of all, if an asylum-seeker is detained, it means that the claim goes through the process much more quickly, a couple of months or less rather than years. Second, if an adult is released while the claim is pending, the chances of ever finding that person again once he or she is in the country are dicey, to say the least. It is tantamount to allowing the migrant to live here, no matter what the merits of the case.

A few points about all this:

1) Family units can go home quickly. The option that both honors our laws and keeps family units together is a swift return home after prosecution. But immigrant advocates hate it because they want the migrants to stay in the United States. How you view this question will depend a lot on how you view the motivation of the migrants (and how seriously you take our laws and our border).

2) There’s a better way to claim asylum. Every indication is that the migrant flow to the United States is discretionary. It nearly dried up at the beginning of the Trump administration when migrants believed that they had no chance of getting into the United States. Now, it is going in earnest again because the message got out that, despite the rhetoric, the policy at the border hasn’t changed. This strongly suggests that the flow overwhelmingly consists of economic migrants who would prefer to live in the United States, rather than victims of persecution in their home country who have no option but to get out.

Even if a migrant does have a credible fear of persecution, there is a legitimate way to pursue that claim, and it does not involve entering the United States illegally. First, such people should make their asylum claim in the first country where they feel safe, i.e., Mexico or some other country they are traversing to get here. Second, if for some reason they are threatened everywhere but the United States, they should show up at a port of entry and make their claim there rather than crossing the border illegally.

3) There is a significant moral cost to not enforcing the border. There is obviously a moral cost to separating a parent from a child and almost everyone would prefer not to do it. But, under current policy and with the current resources, the only practical alternative is letting family units who show up at the border live in the country for the duration. Not only does this make a mockery of our laws, it creates an incentive for people to keep bringing children with them.

Needless to say, children should not be making this journey that is fraught with peril. But there is now a premium on bringing children because of how we have handled these cases. They are considered chits.

In April, the New York Times reported:
Some migrants have admitted they brought their children not only to remove them from danger in such places as Central America and Africa, but because they believed it would cause the authorities to release them from custody sooner.

Others have admitted to posing falsely with children who are not their own, and Border Patrol officials say that such instances of fraud are increasing.
According to azcentral.com, it is “common to have parents entrust their children to a smuggler as a favor or for profit.”

If someone is determined to come here illegally, the decent and safest thing would be to leave the child at home with a relative and send money back home. Because we favor family units over single adults, we are creating an incentive to do the opposite and use children to cut deals with smugglers.

4) Congress can fix this. Congress can change the rules so the Flores consent decree will no longer apply, and it can appropriate more money for family shelters at the border. This is an obvious thing to do that would eliminate the tension between enforcing our laws and keeping family units together. The Trump administration is throwing as many resources as it can at the border to expedite the process, and it desperately wants the Flores consent decree reversed. Despite some mixed messages, if the administration had its druthers, family units would be kept together and their cases settled quickly.

The missing piece here is Congress, but little outrage will be directed at it, and probably nothing will be done. And so our perverse system will remain in place and the crisis at the border will rumble on.

White House published on June 18, 2018: US Press Secretary Sarah Sanders holds a White House press briefing with US DHS Sec Nielsen.
US Dept of Homeland Security
Release Date: June 18, 2018

In recent days, we have seen reporters, Members of Congress, and other groups mislead the public on the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) zero-tolerance policy.

Federal law enforcement officers have sworn duties to enforce the laws that Congress passes. Repeating intentionally untrue and unsubstantiated statements about DHS agents, officers, and procedures is irresponsible and deeply disrespectful to the men and women who risk their lives every day to secure our border and enforce our laws.

DHS has a policy to separate families at the border.

DHS does not have a blanket policy of separating families at the border. However, DHS does have a responsibility to protect all minors in our custody. This means DHS will separate adults and minors under certain circumstances. These circumstances include: 1) when DHS is unable to determine the familial relationship, 2) when DHS determines that a child may be at risk with the parent or legal guardian, or 3) when the parent or legal guardian is referred for criminal prosecution.
  • Familial Relationship – If there is reason to question the claimed familial relationship between an adult and child, it is not appropriate to detain adults and children together.
  • Human Trafficking and Smuggling – If there is reason to suspect the purported parent or legal guardian of human trafficking or smuggling, DHS detains the adult in an appropriate, secure detection facility, separate from the minor. DHS continues to see instances and intelligence reports indicating minors are trafficked by unrelated adults, posing as a “family” in an effort to avoid detention.
  • Safety Risk – If there is reason to suspect the purported parent or legal guardian poses a safety risk to the child (e.g. suspected child abuse), it is not appropriate to maintain the adult and child together.
  • Criminal Prosecution – If an adult is referred for criminal prosecution, the adult will be transferred to U.S. Marshals Service custody and any children will be classified as an unaccompanied alien child and transferred to the Department of Health and Human Services custody.
In recent months, DHS has seen a staggering increase in the number of illegal aliens using children to pose as family units to gain entry into the United States. From October 2017 to February 2018, there was a 315 percent increase in the number of cases of adults with minors fraudulently posing as “family units” to gain entry.

Prior to April 2017, DHS never separated families arriving at the border.

DHS has separated families under the circumstances described above. Because of court decisions, DHS can generally no longer hold families in detention beyond 20 days.

DHS can indefinitely detain families who cross the border illegally.

DHS generally releases families within 20 days. This creates a “get out of jail free” card for illegal alien families and encourages groups of illegal aliens to pose as families hoping to take advantage of that loophole.

In 2014, DHS increased detention facilities for arriving alien families and held families pending the outcome of immigration proceedings. However, a federal judge ruled in 2016 that under the Flores Settlement Agreement, minors detained as part of a family unit cannot be detained in unlicensed facilities for longer than a presumptively reasonable period of 20 days, at which point, such minors must be released or transferred to a licensed facility. Because most jurisdictions do not offer licensure for family residential centers, DHS rarely holds family units for longer than 20 days. The judge’s ruling made it much more difficult for the Federal government to use the detention authorities Congress gave it.

DHS is referring for prosecution all families coming to the border.

DHS only refers to the Department of Justice those adults who violate the law by crossing the border illegally (or who have violated some other criminal law) and are amenable for prosecution. When adults, with or without children, unlawfully enter this country, there must be a consequence for breaking our laws.

DHS is not referring for prosecutions families or individuals arriving at ports of entry or attempting to enter the country through legal means. These families and individuals have not broken the law and will be processed accordingly.

DHS is turning away asylum seekers at ports of entry.

DHS complies with Federal law with regard to processing individuals claiming asylum at ports of entry.

CBP processes all aliens arriving at all ports of entry without documents as expeditiously as possible without negatively affecting the agency's primary mission to protect the American public from dangerous people and materials while enhancing the nation’s economic competitiveness through facilitating legitimate trade and travel.

As the number of arriving aliens determined to be inadmissible at ports of entry continues to rise, CBP must prioritize its limited resources to ensure its primary mission is being executed. Depending on port circumstances at the time of arrival, CBP officials will allocate the necessary resources to its primary mission and operate appropriate access controls and queue management procedures for those arriving aliens without proper travel documents.

DHS separates families who entered at the ports of entry and who are seeking asylum – even though they have not broken the law.

If an adult enters at a port of entry and claims asylum, they will not face prosecution for illegal entry. DHS does have a responsibility to protect minors we apprehend and will separate in three circumstances:1) when DHS is unable to determine the familial relationship, 2) when DHS determines that a child may be at risk with the parent or legal guardian, or 3) when the parent or legal guardian is referred for criminal prosecution.

Once separated, arriving alien adults cannot contact minors and are not told where the minors are being held by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

DHS is committed to and has procedures in place to connect family members after separation so adults know the location of minors and have regular communication with them.

HHS and DHS work to facilitate communication between detained adults and minors (in HHS custody) in a number of ways to include telephone and/or video conferencing. Additionally, ICE has posted information in all over 72-hour facilities advising detained adults who are trying to locate, and/or communicate with a child in the custody of HHS to call the Detention Reporting and Information Line (DRIL) for assistance. This posted information includes:

HHS Adult Hotline (24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in both English and Spanish):
  • If calling from outside an ICE detention facility, call 1-800-203-7001.
  • If calling from an ICE detention facility, dial 699# on the free call platform.
  • Please note that you will need to provide the child’s full name, date of birth, and country of origin. It is also helpful to provide the child’s alien registration number, if you know it.
HHS Email: information@ORRNCC.com

Individuals may also obtain information about a particular immigration case (including their child’s), or information about reunifying with minors, through the following methods:

ICE Call Center (Monday-Friday, 8 am-8 pm EST):
  • If calling from outside an ICE detention facility, call 1-888-351-4024.
  • If calling from an ICE detention facility, dial 9116# on the free call platform.
ICE Email: Parental.Interests@ice.dhs.gov

Additionally, CBP has developed and distributed bilingual documents outlining the separation and reunification process.

Language barriers prevent aliens apprehended at the border, and subject to prosecution, from receiving adequate information.

All US Border Patrol trainees are required to take Spanish language training while at the Border Patrol Academy, and achieve proficiency in Spanish. All Border Patrol personnel on the Southwest Border are bilingual.

CBP apprehends illegal aliens from numerous countries that speak many languages other than Spanish. Should an agent ever have a language or communication issue, they are required to find another Agent who speaks the language or to utilize contract interpreters.

All Border Patrol personnel at the border are directed to clearly explain the relevant process to apprehended individuals. CBP provides detainees with written documentation (in Spanish and English) that lays out the process – to include the appropriate phone numbers to contact.

CBP and ICE officers are not properly trained to separate minors from their custodians.

The safety of CBP employees, detainees, and the public is paramount during all aspects of CBP operations. CBP treats all individuals in its custody with dignity and respect, and complies will all laws and policy, including CBP’s National Standards on Transport, Escort, Detention, and Search (TEDS). TEDS reinforces/reiterates the need to consider the best interest of children and mandates adherence to established protocols to protect at-risk populations, to include standards for the transport and treatment of minors in CBP custody.

All ICE facility staff who interact with adults receive trauma-informed care training. ICE is augmenting mental health care staffing, to include trained clinical staff, to provide mental health services to detained adults.

DHS detention facilities are in poor condition and do not provide clean drinking water.

DHS facilities are safe and sanitary, and adults and minors are provided access to food and drinking water, medical care as needed, and adequate temperature control and ventilation.

DHS and HHS houses migrants in “inhumane fenced cages” or in an “ice box.”

DHS and HHS utilize short-term facilities in order to process and temporarily hold migrants that have been apprehended. These short-term facilities do not employ the use of ‘cages’ to house minors. Certain facilities make use of barriers in order to separate minors of different genders and age groups – for the safety of those who are being held. Additionally, CBP facilities have adequate temperature control and ventilation. ICE facilities are designed for longer-term detention of adults and, in some cases, families.

DHS takes seriously our responsibility for the safety and security of all migrants in the custody of the United States government.

DHS has never separated families for prosecutions before – this is a new policy in this Administration.

Illegal border crossers, including family units, were referred for prosecutions, as appropriates, under the previous Administration. The average referral rate for amenable adults from FY10 – FY16 was 21 percent.

By choice, DHS refuses to keep families together through the immigration adjudication and removal process.

Court decisions interpreting the Flores Settlement Agreement (FSA), which has been in existence for over 20 years but was significantly broadened in 2016, limits the government’s ability to detain family units. Pursuant to these court decisions, minors detained as part of a family unit cannot be detained in unlicensed facilities for longer than a presumptively reasonable period of 20 days, at which point, minors must be released or transferred to a licensed facility. Because most jurisdictions do not offer licensure for family residential centers, DHS can rarely detain a family for longer than 20 days.

The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (TVPRA) requires unaccompanied alien children (other than those from contiguous countries – Mexico and Canada – who are eligible to withdraw their application for admission) be transferred from DHS to the Department of Health and Human Services within 72 hours, absent exceptional circumstances.
The uncivilized Marxist savages of the Democratic Left acting out again. These are not protesters. Stop calling them protesters. These are disruptors, rioters, oppressors. They should have all been arrested and charged for disturbing the peace. Air your grievances at town hall meetings, or write letters to your representatives to have laws changed. (emphasis mine)

The Washington Examiner
written by Christian Datoc
Tuesday June 19, 2018

Activists with the D.C. chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America crashed Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen's dinner Tuesday evening and appeared to chase her from the building.

According to a Facebook Live video posted to DSA's Facebook page, protesters surrounded Nielsen's corner table at MXDC Cocina Mexicana, located just a few blocks from the White House.

The activists chanted about Nielsen and the Trump administration's zero tolerance policy for illegal immigrants, called the DHS secretary a "fascist pig," and said they couldn't believe she had the "fucking gall" to eat at a Mexican restaurant while the administration is separating illegal immigrant families who seek to enter the country outside of certified ports of entry.

They also called for the complete abolition of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency at DHS.

It is not immediately clear if protesters drove Nielsen from the restaurant before her meal was completed, but a video of her leaving was posted to Twitter shortly afterward.

USA: Chicago With Strict Gun Control Laws Has One Of The Worst Homicide Arrest Rates In The Nation. Analysis Finds, No Arrest in 74 Percent of Chicago Homicides. City And State Run By Democrats.

Chicago Tonight News
written by Nick Blumberg
Thursday June 14, 2018

The city of Chicago has one of the worst homicide arrest rates in the nation.

That’s according to a Washington Post analysis of data from the 50 largest cities in the United States. Over the course of 11 years, the Post found that 74 percent of homicides in Chicago resulted in no arrests. It also found that large swaths of the West and South Sides saw both high concentrations of killings and low rates of arrests.

And it found large swaths of the West and South Sides saw both high concentrations of killings and low rates of arrests.

Joining us to discuss those findings are Kevin Graham, president of the Fraternal Order of Police, Chicago Lodge 7; and the Rev. Marshall Hatch, pastor of the New Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church in West Garfield Park. The Chicago Police Department was invited to participate in our discussion but did not respond.
Chicago Tribune
written by Madeline Buckley, Hannah Leone, Jeremy Gorner and Kyle Bentle
Tuesday June 19, 2018

The weekend began with seven people shot in just an hour on the South Side. It ended with 10 people shot in two attacks on the West Side.

By Monday morning, at least 56 people had been hit by gunfire in Chicago over the weekend. At least nine of them died, according to data kept by the Tribune.

It was the worst weekend for violence in the city this year. But more troubling, it was close to comparable weekends in 2016 and 2017, when gun violence hit levels not seen in Chicago in more than a decade.

"Most of Chicago celebrated and enjoyed this weekend," Chicago police First Deputy Superintendent Anthony Riccio told reporters, referring to Pride Fest on the North Side and various Father’s Day celebrations. "However, we saw an unacceptable and frustrating level of gun violence in several communities.

“There’s too many illegal guns on the street,” he added, echoing a constant theme of his boss, Superintendent Eddie Johnson. “They’re too easy to get.”

As bad as shootings have been in some parts of the city this year, overall they have been down substantially from the previous two years. But not last weekend, an analysis of Tribune data shows.

At least 59 people were shot in Chicago during the weekend of June 16 last year and again during the weekend of June 17 in 2016.

Weather was no doubt a factor. Temperatures climbed into the middle 90s both days, drawing more people into the street later into the night. According to police, that usually increases the odds of rivals running into each other or arguments escalating into gunfire.

Two of the city's most violent police districts bore the brunt of the weekend gunfire: 10 shot in Harrison, nine in bordering Ogden, the data show. The next highest was the Near West Side District: seven shot in two attacks. The Englewood District to the south also recorded seven shot.

About half the victims were in their 20s. Thirteen were in their teens. Seven were girls and young women.

The worst attack occurred as the weekend was winding down. Two cars circled a block where a party was being held in the 1300 block of South Loomis Street in University Village on the Near West Side and then at least two people opened fire.

Six people were hit, including a women in her 20s who was shot in the chest, left arm and head and died at the scene, police said. A 17-year-old boy was shot several times in the head. He was covered in a white sheet, but his bare arms, jean cuffs and boots were left exposed.

People gathered at the edge of the crime scene saw his arm and leg twitch slightly.

“Get up,” people yelled.

“He ain’t dead,” a woman cried.

Paramedics performed chest compressions on the 17-year-old as some in the crowd begged police to take the sheet off. Others spoke to the teen, encouraging him to pull through. The teen was carried into an ambulance and taken to Stroger Hospital in "very critical condition," according to police.

Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford said he was trying to gather more information about the ambulance response. Riccio said the 17-year-old suffered a “catastrophic” wound to the head.

“This is a tragedy," Riccio said. "We are working through profiles and backgrounds to get an idea as to what could have prompted the shooting."

Another multiple shooting occurred hours earlier, about three miles away in Little Village.

Three men and a woman were standing on the street in the 2200 block of South Sacramento Avenue about 9:30 p.m. Sunday when a gunman walked up and began firing, police said. Their conditions ranged from critical to good.

Two children stood outside a home and watched as police shined flashlights across the sidewalk and placed evidence markers near shell casings. The children caught Annette Hernandez’s eye as she walked past.

“You see, there are kids running around,” she said. “Every night, it’s the same stuff.”

One of the weekend shootings occurred in a place that doesn't see a lot of violence: along the lake near Buckingham Fountain.

A 28-year-old man was with a group on the Lakefront Trail near Balbo Drive about 1:40 a.m. Sunday when there was an argument and shots were fired, according to police.

Travis Perry, 24, of Oak Forest, said he was sitting on a ledge with several friends when he heard four or five gunshots and felt a bullet whiz past his face. He grabbed his girlfriend and got on the ground. He noticed a man lying facedown. “There was blood coming out of his back.”

He took off his black shirt and used it to put pressure against the wound. Paramedics placed the man on a stretcher and moved him from the paved trail into an ambulance. He was taken in critical condition to Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

“It feels really good to have been able to help someone,” Perry said. “It’s crazy. You never think it’s going to happen right there next to Michigan Avenue and the lake and everything.”

USA: In 2013, During Obama Admin, Deportation Separated 72,400 Of U.S.-Born Children From Parents. President Obama Deported More People Than Any Other President In U.S. History.

That image above with child crying and children in cages were taken during the Obama administration and are being circulated around the internet making people believe these pictures were taken now during the Trump administration. (emphasis mine)

Zero Hedge
written by Tyler Durden
Sunday June 17, 2018

Having lost control of the 'Russia collusion' narrative (still evidence-less after 18 months and increasingly exposed for bias), and unable to gain any traction with their attacks on the Trump-Kim summit (hard to make a case that more nuclear armaggeddon threats are better than less), the deep state (hand in mouth with the left and the media) are currently attempting to spin Trump's enforcement of Obama policies as an indication that he is a baby-stealing racist.

You've seen the sad, dramatic, emotive images...

And now, as The Daily Caller reports, Democratic Texas Rep. Henry Cuellar is admitting that the Obama administration attempted to cover up the child migrant crisis occurring at the Southern border.
“It was kept very quiet under the Obama Administration. There were large numbers of people coming in. The Obama administration was trying to keep this quiet,” Cuellar told CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield.
Whitfield displayed a 2014 image of migrant children held in cages at a detention center, and Cuellar said that he released similar photos of children separated from their parents.

Cuellar added that the number of children being held at the border right now is similar to the amount during the Obama administration.
“We still see the numbers,” he said, adding that “not all of them are being separated. Some of them are coming alone.”
Huffington Post
written by Elise Foley
Wednesday June 25, 2014

WASHINGTON — Immigration and Customs Enforcement last year carried out more than 72,000 deportations of parents who said they had U.S.-born children, according to reports to Congress obtained Wednesday by The Huffington Post.

The reports were sent by ICE in April to the Senate Appropriations Committee and the Senate Judiciary Committee, as required by law. ICE confirmed the authenticity of the two reports, which lay out 72,410 removals of immigrants who said they had one or more U.S.-born children in 2013.

The reports show that even parents of U.S. citizens are among the hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants being expelled from the United States each year. They hold particular significance as President Barack Obama faces pressure to change his deportation policies to keep families together. Obama’s deportation policies are under increased scrutiny by those in both political parties as the House stalls on immigration reform and the government scrambles to deal with an influx of unaccompanied minors crossing the U.S. border illegally. While opponents of immigration reform have argued that Obama’s lax enforcement is attracting new unauthorized immigrants, reform advocates are turning to the White House to slow deportations.

Children born in the U.S. are given automatic citizenship, regardless of their parents’ immigration status, and a 2013 report by Human Impact Partners estimated that 4.5 million U.S. citizen children have at least one parent who is undocumented. When a parent is deported, their U.S.-born children sometimes leave with them. But some stay in the U.S. with another parent or family member. Some children end up in U.S. foster care.

Advocates for halting some deportations have pointed to cases involving parents of children who are U.S. citizens, saying parents should not be separated from their children except in extreme circumstances.

While most of the parents of U.S.-born children deported last year had been convicted of a crime, about 10,700 had no criminal convictions, although they may have fit other ICE priorities for removal, according to the reports.

ICE said 71,214 parents of U.S.-born children who were deported fit its priorities. The priorities include convicted criminals, people caught attempting to enter the country illegally, people who had returned after a previous deportation, and people who failed to report to ICE after a deportation order, according to the report. Because some people may have been deported more than once, the figures reflect total removals, not the exact number of individuals who were deported. The numbers do not include deportations of parents who fail to tell agents they have U.S.-born children or parents whose foreign-born children are undocumented.

The reports provide no detail about crimes that had been committed by parents who were deported. Critics of ICE priorities say the numbers can be misleading, because they lump together low-level charges and immigration offenses with violent crimes. Reform advocates argue that repeat immigration violations should not make immigrants a high priority for removal, in part because those who reenter the U.S. after being deported are sometimes simply trying to reunite with families.

There were 39,410 removals of parents who said they had U.S.-born children in the first half of 2013, according to one report. Sixty-two percent of those who were deported came from the interior of the U.S., while 38 percent were apprehended near the border. In both categories, strong majorities of those deported had been convicted of a crime, according to the report. ICE reported that 98 percent of its removals of parents of U.S.-born children in the first half of 2013 were considered priorities for deportation.

In the second half of the year, there were 33,000 removals of parents who claimed U.S.-born children. A majority — 63 percent — came from the U.S. interior, and 98 percent of the total fit ICE priorities, according to the report.

Colorlines reported in December 2012 that more than 200,000 removals of parents of U.S.-born children had occurred from July 1, 2010, to Sept. 31, 2012, based on a Freedom of Information Act request.

An ICE spokesman told The Huffington Post on Wednesday that the agency “is sensitive to the fact that encountering those who violate our immigration laws may impact families.”

“We work with individuals in removal proceedings to ensure they have ample opportunity to make important decisions regarding the care and custody of their children,” the ICE spokesman said in a statement. “For parents who are ordered removed, it is their decision whether or not to relocate their children with them. If parents choose to take their children with them, ICE assists in every way possible including helping to obtain travel documents for the minors or, when possible, allow for the family’s voluntary departure.”
ABC News
written by Serena Marshall
August 29, 2016

How many people have been deported under Obama?

President Barack Obama has often been referred to by immigration groups as the "Deporter in Chief."

Between 2009 and 2015 his administration has removed more than 2.5 million people through immigration orders, which doesn’t include the number of people who "self-deported" or were turned away and/or returned to their home country at the border by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

How does he compare to other presidents?

According to governmental data, the Obama administration has deported more people than any other president's administration in history.

In fact, they have deported more than the sum of all the presidents of the 20th century.

President George W. Bush's administration deported just over two million during his time in office; and Obama’s numbers don’t reflect his last year in office, for which data is not yet available.
Who is being deported?

President Obama directed U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to focus on criminals, not families, during his November 2014 executive action on immigration.
President Trump is doing the same thing as President Obama and you are making him out to be an animal racist who hates immigrants. The immigrants are most likely treated much better under President Trump than under President Obama since Obama refused to listen to whistleblowers as I show proof in tweet below and locked immigrant children in cages as is evident in 2014 pictures that the Democrats used to malign President Trump. (emphasis mine)
According to their website, "ICE has continued to increase its focus on identifying, arresting, and removing convicted criminals in prisons and jails, and also at-large arrests in the interior."

In fiscal year 2015, 91 percent of people removed from inside the U.S. were previously convicted of a crime.

The administration made the first priority "threats to national security, border security, and public safety." That includes gang members, convicted felons or charged with "aggravated felony" and anyone apprehended at the border trying to enter the country illegally.

In 2015, 81 percent, or 113,385, of the removals were the priority one removals.

Priority two includes "misdemeanants and new immigration violators."

That includes "aliens convicted of three or more misdemeanor offenses, other than minor traffic" violations, as well as those convicted of domestic violence, sexual abuse, burglary, DUIs or drug trafficking.

Who is not being deported?

With the focus on criminals and not families, the administration has moved away from those living and working in the U.S. without a criminal history.

"Felons, not families. Criminals, not children. Gang members, not a mom who’s working hard to provide for her kids. We’ll prioritize, just like law enforcement does every day," Obama said in November 2014 when announcing his executive action on immigration.

And while he tried to provide relief and a way "out of the shadows" for those without criminal histories with his immigration action, that was eventually stricken down by the Supreme Court not issuing a decision on the case, thereby upholding the lower courts action.

But by refocusing on criminals most families who are living and following the law are not targets for deportations.

What about raids against mothers and children?

Priority three for the administration is focused on those who have arrived after January 1, 2014. The administration has focused on preventing families from sending their children unaccompanied on a dangerous trek by emphasizing they will be returned.

Many of these unaccompanied children and mothers with children are fleeing violence in central America—coming from the northern triangle of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, some of the most dangerous countries in the world.

Many of the people migrating from that area to the U.S. claim refugee status and, if they can prove real harm will result in their being returned, they are allowed to remain until their case is heard.

There are critics, however, who state that many are not getting a fair shot at claiming refugee status and are being returned too hastily.

New York Times
written by Carl Hulse
Monday July 7, 2014

WASHINGTON — It was one of the final pieces of legislation signed into law by President George W. Bush, a measure that passed without controversy, along with a pension bill and another one calling for national parks to be commemorated on quarters.

“This is a piece of legislation we’re very proud to sign,” a White House spokesman, Tony Fratto, told reporters on Dec. 23, 2008, as the president put his pen to the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, named for a 19th-century British abolitionist. “This program has been very effective around the world in trying to stop trafficking in persons.”

Now the legislation, enacted quietly during the transition to the Obama administration, is at the root of the potentially calamitous flow of unaccompanied minors to the nation’s southern border.

Originally pushed by a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers as well as by evangelical groups to combat sex trafficking, the bill gave substantial new protections to children entering the country alone who were not from Mexico or Canada by prohibiting them from being quickly sent back to their country of origin.

Instead, it required that they be given an opportunity to appear at an immigration hearing and consult with an advocate, and it recommended that they have access to counsel. It also required that they be turned over to the care of the Department of Health and Human Services, and the agency was directed to place the minor “in the least restrictive setting that is in the best interest of the child” and to explore reuniting those children with family members.

The Obama administration says the law is partly responsible for tying its hands in dealing with the current influx of children. Officials have suggested that the White House might seek flexibility in the law’s requirements when it asks Congress to provide emergency funds to contend with the latest immigration crisis, a request that could come as early as Tuesday. About 52,000 minors without their parents have been caught at the Southwest border since October.

“Giving the secretary of homeland security additional authority and discretion that he can use to confront that situation more efficiently, making sure that we are acknowledging the humanitarian issues that are at stake while also enforcing the law, is a priority,” Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary, said Monday. “It’s the priority of this administration, and if you listen to the public comments of Democrats and Republicans, it sounds like it’s a bipartisan priority.”

Senator Dianne Feinstein, the California Democrat who helped write the measure, said the White House does not need new power to act. “That law already provides the administration with flexibility to accelerate the judicial process in times of crisis,” she said. “The administration should use that flexibility to speed up the system while still treating these children humanely, with compassion and respect.”

On Capitol Hill, Democrats said they expected that the administration’s initial request for border money would not push for changes in the trafficking law but that the White House would try to work with relevant congressional committees to eventually win revisions.

Democrats have shown reluctance to endorse narrow immigration law changes after House Republicans balked at a much more sweeping overhaul and seem hesitant to tinker too much with the William Wilberforce Act.

In a recent letter to Speaker John A. Boehner, Republican of Ohio, Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leader, said Congress must ensure that the provisions of the trafficking victims act, “which passed the House and Senate unanimously and was also signed into law by President Bush, are fully enforced, so that due process is provided to unaccompanied children and the safety and well-being of unaccompanied children is protected.”

Republicans, who are calling for changes that would make it easier to send them back, blame President Obama for the surge of children at the border, saying he provided a lure by instituting a program that deferred deportations for some immigrants who entered the nation illegally as children.

They say the effort to point to the Bush-era law is a meant to deflect attention from the administration and make both parties culpable.

Representative Jeff Fortenberry, a Nebraska Republican and a chief backer of the original bill, said multiple factors contributed to the crisis, including “exploitation of our laws, the ungoverned space in Central America, as well as the desperate poverty faced by those deciding to cross.”

“With all these factors in mind, it’s hard to think that today’s situation at the border can be directly attributed to a law that’s been in effect now for six years,” Mr. Fortenberry said.

What many can agree on is that the Wilberforce law was not enacted with the idea of dealing with the current flow of tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors or providing an incentive for children to reach the border.

“It is classic unintended consequences,” said Marc R. Rosenblum, deputy director of the U.S. Immigration Policy Program at the Migration Policy Institute. “This was certainly not what was envisioned.”

Given the tense partisanship that now surrounds nearly every aspect of border policy, it is hard to imagine that a bill making such substantive changes could breeze through Congress. But the trafficking measure did so in the Bush administration’s last weeks, and it did so with bipartisan backing without so much as a recorded vote in the Senate.

Advocates saw it as a breakthrough on sex trafficking after Congress had already scuttled an earlier attempt at broad immigration reform despite the strong backing of Mr. Bush.

Just two House Republicans — Representative Jeff Flake of Arizona and Representative Paul Broun of Georgia — opposed the measure when it first passed the House in 2007, but it went through Congress without opposition and with little notice in the post-election session of 2008.

Aides to Mr. Flake, now a senator, said he did not foresee the current problems but was more concerned about holding the line on federal spending at the time. He now backs revising the law. “Congress needs to change what it can, as soon as it can, to ensure that these unaccompanied minors are sent home without delay,” he said.

NBC News Published on Jun 18, 2018: During a New York City speaking event, Hillary Clinton took aim at the current zero-tolerance policy at the U.S.-Mexico border. Clinton added that, during the presidential campaign, she had warned of such policies occurring under President Trump.