I Want to Live as if I Wasn’t a Criminal

Wendy-copia-2

Excerpt from “Who’s Coming North? – Migrants’ Journeys Through Mexico”

Wendy is just 17 years old, but she walked three days alone along the same route where Edwin and his friends were robbed by masked paramilitaries. As an unaccompanied minor making the dangerous journey north, she joins the ranks of what the UN has termed “children on the run,” the more than 60,000 underage migrants coming to the US every year without an adult to guide them.

“My family doesn’t care what happens to me,” she said. “They’re just not interested.”

Like roughly 80 percent of the migrants passing through La 72, Wendy is from Honduras. She says the economic situation and increasing security concerns have made the country all but unlivable.

“The law in my country doesn’t work. The cops don’t help you, you have to pay them first. Every day there’s more crime committed by the police,” she told me. “Someone has to do something.”

Her main goal in leaving Honduras, what she hopes to accomplish in the US, is to get an education. Continue reading

Deferred (In)Action: Where’s the solidarity with indigenous people facing militarization?

From Alex Soto, 

Komkch’ed e Wah ‘osithk (Sells) 

Tohono O’odham Nation

attacktherootnoteachotheroodham

Reposted from the O’odham Solidarity Across Borders Collective.

To all those unaware of the fine print of Obama’s immigration plan:

First and foremost, it will direct more resources to border security. Meaning…further militarization of Indigenous communities who are divided by the so-called border, such as my home community of the Tohono O’odham Nation. Our O’odham him’dag (way of life) will once again be attacked by settler border politics, as it was in 1848 and 1852 when the so-called border was illegally imposed. Attacked like we were in 1994 when the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was enacted. These borderland policies are being devised and implemented without any settler consciousness to the Indigenous peoples who will be most negatively impacted by such policies. The Indigenous nations who pre-date so called Mexico and the United Snakkkes end up almost voiceless.

Basically Obama’s 2014 Immigration plan = border militarization = 21st century colonization.

So in light of Obama’s latest immigration plan, I’m writing this to say “DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE”. The plan is anti-Indigenous and anti-Migrant. Please look at the bigger picture (NAFTA). Please see the trade off. Please see the state’s 2014 divide and conquer tactics.
Then ask yourself, what does an anti-colonial migrant/Indigenous response to this all look like? What does a world without NAFTA borders look like? What does collective liberation look like in O’odham lands? Lipan Apache Lands? Yoeme Lands? Kickapoo Lands? Indigenous homelands which are now in the so-called border region?

Where’s the solidarity with Indigenous people facing militarization?

I recognize this is a complex issue. I do not want fellow Indigenous migrants coming from the southern hemisphere to be criminalized by racist laws. I do not want families to be separated, loved ones to be deported, or for them to ever have to walk the hot desert in the first place, just to have a “chance” in this neo-liberal, NAFTA world we are forced to slave in. But at the same time, I do not want my homeland to be a police state. I do not want our ceremonies to be disrupted. I do not want our jewed (land) destroyed by border security apparatus. I do not want our sky to be polluted by more Border Patrol helicopters, cameras placed atop rotating cranes as tall as skyscrapers, or drones. I do not want freedom of movement for O’odham to be granted only to the holders of bio-metric colonial passports. I do not want CANAMEX/NAFTA corridors scarring our lands with freeways (Loop 202/Interstate 11). Ultimately I do not want, in the words of my late grandfather, who saw the Berlin Wall with his own eyes while being stationed in Germany, “an O’odham Berlin Wall” built at the border.

These are just a few thoughts I have at this time. Overall I maintain my hopes we can all get our shit together. We just have to weather the neo-colonial, mainstream migrant rights industrial complex funded by the creator knows who (but is worth a longer analysis), Dream ACTors and at the same time, we also have to weather the settler state, while empowering our own community. Either way, we got this… because we have to.

#ourdreamisyournightmare

#attacktheROOTnotEACHOTHER

#OodhamRiseUP

#eeewhatBorder

#browningofamerikkka

#akathebrowningofwhite supremacy

#smash21stcenturyColonialism

#eeewhatReform

#dontbelievethehype

#sayingtheshitthatyoucantsay

For additional resources please check:

http://www.indigenousaction.org/comprehensive-immigration-reform-is-anti-immigrant-anti-indigenous/

http://oodhamsolidarity.blogspot.com/2010/04/movement-demands-autonomy-oodham.html

http://inaborderworld.org/2014/03/13/colonization_immigrant_rights/http://survivalsolidarity.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/a-call-to-action-pdf1.pdf

http://stopcanamex.blogspot.com/

The Ohlauer crisis: a watershed moment for asylum policy in Germany?

From Equal Times

By Sharon Dodua Otoo

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On 24 June 2014, Kreuzberg – a vibrant, multicultural neighbourhood of Berlin – was virtually turned into a police state overnight.

<p>Local government and police mishandling of the situation in Ohlauer Strasse almost brought the situation to near fatal disaster.</p>
Local government and police mishandling of the situation in Ohlauer Strasse almost brought the situation to near fatal disaster.

(Photo/Ole Ukena)

Up to 1,720 officers, some in full riot gear and armed with machine guns, were deployed in an area no bigger than a few blocks.

They were there to remove 40 refugees who were staging a roof-top protest against their imminent eviction from an abandoned school building on Ohlauer Strasse.

Hundreds, at times thousands, of demonstrators came out to support the political demands of the refugees.

The siege lasted for eight days, during which time freedom of movement – even for members of parliament and journalists – was completely restricted.

Continue reading

“We want our freedom!” Refugees resist in Berlin

Post image for “We want our freedom!” Refugees resist in Berlin

The resistance of a group of refugees against the eviction of an occupied school building in Berlin is exemplary of migrant struggles across Europe.

Originally Posted in ROAR Magazine

For eight days, a small group of about forty refugees from different but mostly African countries have been occupying the roof of a vacant school building in Berlin’s Kreuzberg neighborhood. The former Gerhart Hauptmann School on Ohlauer Strasse had been home to more than two hundred people since October last year, ever since a nationwide wave of refugee protests culminated in a six-hundred kilometer long protest march from the Bavarian town of Würzburg to the center of the country’s capital, Berlin. The refugees first set up camp at the central Oranienplatz, and later moved on to occupy the vacant school building where they were holding up, awaiting the slow processing of their asylum applications.

Last Tuesday, June 24, the police evicted the majority of the two hundred refugees who had sought shelter in the occupied school, but a group of between forty and eighty refugees and fellow-activists refused to leave the building, instead moving onto to the roof to resist their forced eviction. Some of the refugees have threatened to jump if the police moves in on the building. In the words of 32-year old Adam from Sudan: “There are some people here who have been waiting in centres around Europe for years only to have their asylum request rejected. They stand to lose everything – they’d rather jump off the building than get caught.” Continue reading

[Video] Spain: 492 immigrants jump the fence in North African enclave Melilla

“Melilla registered its largest number of immigrants entering since 2005 on Tuesday, when 492 people from the Sub-Saharan region jumped over the double fence shortly after 08:00 local time (07:00 GMT).

Many of them sustained injuries. Between 50-100 people have cuts of varying degrees, so that the Red Cross had to set up a field hospital. The Spanish authorities used rubber bullets, but stress that nobody was injured by them. Continue reading

The Border Patrol’s Out-of-Control Growth

Originally Posted in Other Words

Written by Todd Miller

On October 8, Tucson police officers pulled over a driver because the light above his license plate wasn’t working. When he didn’t present a license, a typical scenario unfolded: Under Arizona’s infamous SB 1070 law, cops become de facto immigration enforcement agents.

Simply put, the state’s “papers, please” measure obligates police to rely on “reasonable suspicion” to determine if someone possesses the proper documents to be in the United States.

wfp-dhs-chiricahua sky island

chiricahua sky island/Flickr

But police officers don’t actually make immigration-related arrests. Instead, they call the U.S. Border Patrol. The October 8 incident marked just one of 50,000 such referrals that happen yearly in Tucson. The same Arizona immigration bill that former Department of Homeland Security (DHS) head Janet Napolitano called “misguided,” is enabled by her agency’s collaboration with Arizona’s local police forces.

And it’s empowered by the government’s systematic expulsion of 400,000 people from our country each year.

Efforts to overhaul the nation’s border security and immigration policies are revving up again in Washington. That means a renewed push for enhanced border policing, such as the $46 billion in the reform bill the Senate passed in June.

That kind of spending would bring the Border Patrol’s creeping militarized mission further into the interior of the United States.

The Border Patrol isn’t just any agency. The Tucson police were calling in the largest U.S. federal law enforcement agency — by far — with a post 9/11 priority mission to stop terrorists and weapons of mass destruction from entering the United States. Yet its main tasks remain routine immigration enforcement and drug interdiction, creating an uneasy and often blurred mixture of missions.

Border Patrol is part of Customs and Border Protection, a DHS agency created in 2003. Its 60,000 agents make our border forces more than double the size of Ecuador’s army.

The army metaphor isn’t far-fetched: Customs and Border Protection has its own air and marine forces, a special operations branch, and a separate tactical unit. Its rapid-response teams have 500 agents ready to deploy anywhere within 48 hours. Its Predator B drones and Blackhawk helicopters are patrolling the desert southwest as if they were in an Afghanistan war zone. It has armored personnel carriers and uses forward operating bases like those in U.S. wars to secure positions in remote areas. Roughly 700 miles of walls have scarred the landscape of the Mexican borderlands, backed by increasingly sophisticated surveillance towers, cameras, and more than 12,000 motion sensors. Continue reading

BREAKING [Video]: Migrant Detention Center in Greece Set Ablaze During Riots

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(For the latest on the situation in Amygdaleza: ” 10 escape in Migrant Rebellion in Notorious Greek Detention Center ” )

Greece

Riots have broken out in a migrant detention center in Amygdaleza, near Athens.  The conditions in these facilities are known as some of the worst in the world with regular stories of beatings, torture and deplorable conditions. There are several reports of badly injured refugees and one dead, but none is yet confirmed. 10 police are said be injured. The police allegedly regained control at around 02.00.

From Mainstream media reports: 

“Last week, leftist rights group KEERFA said Muslim detainees had been beaten by guards during prayers.”

“In July, the same group reported the death of an Afghan detainee died from a pulmonary infection which prison guards had allegedly ignored for months.”

The Migrants, most of which are unspecified “Asians”, Pakistani, Afghan and Syrian burned containers and mattresses protesting against the police brutality inside the camp, the inhumane conditions and the arbitrary extending of their detentions from 12 months to 18 months simply for being in the country.. Continue reading