Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei recently blasted President Biden over his fatally weak messaging about border security [Guatemalan president blames Biden immigration policy for border crisis, by Emily Jacobs, New York Post, June 10, 2021].
But that doesn’t mean Giammattei is “on our side.”
On June 10, speaking to Central American leaders and the president of Spain, Giammattei explained why Guatemalans leave home and what rich countries should do about it.
El presidente de Guatemala participa en el “Evento de solidaridad” de la plataforma de apoyo del Marco Integral Regional para la Protección y Soluciones (MIRPS), que se lleva a cabo en Costa Rica.… https://t.co/ucYygJ7Fu9— Prensa Libre (@prensa_libre) June 10, 2021
It’s valuable to know what Giammattei is thinking, especially when speaking not with gringos, but with Spanish-speaking leaders.
According to Giammattei:
[Emigrants] don’t go because they want to. The people go because they need to. The people go because of the lack of education, the lack of health care, the lack of employment, the lack of housing and in some cases, due to insecurity. The people are obliged [to emigrate].
[“No solo es de soplar y hacer botellas”: Giammattei habla de migración, integración y vulnerabilidad en Centroamérica (“It’s not just blowing and making bottles: Giammattei speaks of migration, integration and vulnerability in Central America”), by Julio Roman, Prensa Libre, June 10, 2021]
So they are obliged to leave, eh?
Giammattei also discussed the recent rescue of a 5-year-old Guatemalan girl near the end of a border wall at the San Ysidro, California, port of entry [Agents Encounter Child Along Border Wall, CBP.gov, June 8, 2021].
Imagine the image of a 5-year-old girl, in a desert where a coyote [people smuggler] had abandoned her. We have seen many of our fellow Guatemalans die while attempting to arrive to a place that represents more security for their development than we in our countries.
So people try to get to a safer country and they die? Doesn’t sound too safe to me.
Then Giammattei took the obligatory swipe at former President Donald Trump.
There are those who have said that walls must be constructed. And some of them did it and they have constructed walls about 20 meters high and about 3,000 kilometers. Has it stopped the migration? No, walls don’t stop it. If walls stop it, they make tunnels. The people get through. The people risk their lives.
Trump did much to secure the border by combining deals with Mexico and Central American countries with building a wall (not 3000 kilometers, alas), a newly-motivated Border Patrol, and the COVID-19 expulsion policy.
Then the Guatemalan president went off on a whiny spiel about climate change. Central America and the Caribbean, he says, are the world’s most vulnerable regions to climate change, as hurricanes, droughts and floods supposedly show.
Those calamities never occurred before “climate change?”
And guess who’s to blame for climate change?
[T]he developed countries … those who have in their hands the concentration of the industrialization of the terrestrial globe. The majority of these countries have caused climate change.
Do you think Giammattei will go after the real big-time polluters, China and India? Or just Western countries that’ll give him more money?
One that has already given money: Spain, for which Giammattei applauded Spanish President Pedro Sanchez, who was present. Prensa Libre’s Roman reported:
Giammattei … thanked him for being one of the countries that has been most supportive, and that he would also move the hearts of the European Union authorities to see Central America as a land of opportunities, because there are still opportunities in the region.
If it’s a “land of opportunities,” what’s the problem?
Well, Giammattei has a long list: “But what it [the region] lacks are resources, transformation, innovation, closing the digital divide and making possible changes in education through an educative reform, to give the opportunity to new generations to better prepare to confront life.”
Wow, that's a lot!
If we do what is possible with contributions, businesses, foreign governments located in the region which help us generate employment, we can make this region a logistical center of the hemisphere which unites three continents, but more than that we can give a response to the people so they don’t go. ...
Today we must push Central America to an unprecedented level of development, to be more integrated to be able to give effective responses to our population.
Bottom line: They want more money.
So Trump pushed Mexico and Central America to cooperate with us on immigration. With Biden, Harris, and Mayorkas in charge, foreign leaders can dump their unwanted population on us and get foreign aid in return.
One measure of the Biden Border Rush is the Border Patrol’s monthly tally of apprehensions that are euphemistically titled “Southwest Border Land Encounters.” In May, they numbered 180,034, U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported.
Another measure is deportations. Given Giammattei’s remarks on June 10, it’s safe to say he’s happy that deportations to Guatemala are way down:
From January to May the U.S. has deported to Guatemala, by air, 2,025 persons, one of the lowest figures of recent years and the equivalent of a reduction of 83.9% in comparison with the same period in 2020. … 1873 were men and 126 women, besides two girls accompanied by a relative and 24 unaccompanied minors.
[Las deportaciones de EE.UU. a Guatemala descienden un 83,9 % durante 2021 (“U.S. Deportations to Guatemalan Descend 83.9% During 2021”) EFE, June 11, 2021]
Mexico is still deporting Central Americans, a big help to the United States because those deportees are not jumping our border.
On June 9, a tweet from Mexico’s immigration agency reported “42,067 assisted return of migrants to Central America, thus far in 2021.”
Baja resident Arthur Collafsen, who tweets in Spanish and English, offered the lone reply:
And another million inside the country, doing what they want and asking for refugee and asylum status.
Collafsen, who bills himself as a “drummer, media producer, photographer, mind trainer,” appears to be a Mexican voter, but he adorns his Twitter profile with the Danish flag. A naturalized Danish migrant to Mexico?
Meanwhile, the agency reports that it “rescued 90,850 migrants who couldn’t prove their legal status in the country and who principally came from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, of whom some 20% were minors” [Ha identificado INM a 90 mil 850 personas migrantes de enero a junio (“INM has identified 90,850 migrants from January to June”), Gob.mx, June 7, 2021].
The obvious question: If 91,000 illegals were caught, how many are getting through?
As I’ve reported here many times, the Mexican government loves remittances from Mexicans in the U.S. because the money is a vital source of national income. In fact, remittances are the second largest source of national revenue behind Mexico’s domestic automobile industry.
In early June, Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) announced that remittances are increasing:
The heroes and heroines, our fellow Mexican migrants continue to help us. This year looks to be a record in remittances … in April more than $4 billion.
[Versión estenográfica. Conferencia de prensa del presidente Andrés Manuel López Obrador del 2 de junio de 2021 (“Stenographic Version. Press Conference of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador of June 2, 2021”), Gob.mx, June 2, 2021]
Remittances are $120 million ahead of where they were last year at this time, he said, and the surge in money flowing south is connected to the WuFlu pandemic: “Since the pandemic started last year they began to send more to their relatives in Mexico.”
AMLO especially likes to know that remittances go directly to Mexican families:
The automotive industry can generate wealth in Mexico, but … many times they are foreign investments and it goes to the profits of the company. But in the case of remittances there are 10 million families who receive around $350 monthly, and that reactivates the economy from below, in the towns, this helps commerce, it helps the popular economy.
It also provides a strong incentive for Mexico's elite to keep it going.
Mexico’s “gender parity” law requires a certain number of political candidates to be women, but some clever fellows have found a loophole: claim to be “transgender”—
Initially, 18 candidates of the political party Force for Mexico registered as male candidates for various offices in Tlaxcala [a central Mexican state] with the local electoral authority, but it was found that they were in breach of gender parity. So they decided to self-register as women to make their party candidate lists comply with that affirmative action. In an extraordinary session, the [state election authority] approved the registration of the party candidates for the election of municipal officers.”
[Candidatos en Tlaxcala se ‘autoadscriben’ como mujeres para cumplir con paridad... y se los avalan (“Candidates in Tlaxcala self-register as women to comply with parity … and they are approved”), El Financiero, May 6, 2021]
So Mexican politicians use one Leftist policy to supersede another. Who says they aren’t resourceful?
American citizen Allan Wall (email him) moved back to the U.S.A. in 2008 after many years residing in Mexico. Allan's wife is Mexican, and their two sons are bilingual. In 2005, Allan served a tour of duty in Iraq with the Texas Army National Guard. His VDARE.COM articles are archived here; his Mexidata.info articles are archived here; his News With Views columns are archived here; and his website is here.