3 November 2018   Leave a comment

The Washington Post is reporting that the deployment of up to 15,000 regular troops to the US-Mexico border will cost about $200 million.  One should remember that US regular military are not allowed to enforce domestic law, so the most these troops can do is to provide logistical support to the Border Patrol.  US President Trump continues to call the movement of migrants through Mexico an “invasion” but the Department of Defense analysis suggests that, of the 7,200 people who started the caravan, only 20%–about 1,200–will actually make it to the border (p. 10).  Moreover, President Trump seemed to authorize the use of deadly force in the case of rock-throwing by the protesters: ““we will consider that a firearm. Because there’s not much difference.”  In his White House speech on the subject, the back and forth between the President was described by the New Yorker:

“’Do you envision them firing upon any of these people?’ the reporter asked.

“’I hope not,’ Trump said, in a tone that was more a warning than a reassurance. ‘It’s the military—I hope—I hope there won’t be that. But I will tell you this. Anybody throwing stones, rocks—like they did to Mexico and the Mexican military, Mexican police, where they badly hurt police and soldiers of Mexico—we will consider that a firearm.’ Later, when asked what he meant about the rocks, he added, ‘If they want to throw rocks at our military, our military fights back. We’re going to consider—and I told them, consider it a rifle.’”

The image of troops using deadly force on unarmed asylum seekers would forever damage the reputation of the US as a human rights advocate.


North Korea has threatened to restart its nuclear program unless the US drops its economic sanctions.  The threat comes as US Secretary of State Pompeo is scheduled to meet with North Korean officials to continue the negotiations on the nuclear program.  Satellite images show that North Korea has continued its program of uranium mining and enrichment.   The threat also comes as there are a number of signs that the US is becoming increasingly uncomfortable with the growing interactions between North and South Korea, spearheaded primarily by South Korean President Moon.

Posted November 3, 2018 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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