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As Long as We Remember...

October 22, 2018

A Troubling Question

Jason Miller

"Do you think the U.S. military should use deadly force to protect the country’s borders?" That is the question being circulated on social media. It's a telling sign of the times we live in, primarily because isn't that what the military is for?


As a caravan of thousands gathered in Guatemala to begin the long trek to the United States, President Donald Trump vowed to mobilize the U.S. military as a deterrent to their arrival on U.S. soil.


To the dismay of many in the U.S. government, the Mexican Government's efforts to curtail the resolve of about 2,000 Central American migrants from Guatemala marching to the U.S. have failed. The ringleaders have reassembled their mass unarmed invasion force on the Mexican border and vowed to resume their march toward the United States on Sunday. They are threatening to cross the Mexican border from Guatemala with or without proper paperwork.


Mexican authorities have refused again and again to the absolute demands of mass entry into Mexico by migrants and insisted on accepting only small groups for asylum processing and giving out 45-day Mexican visitor permits to some. This was mostly done to achieve a disbursement effect which has been only marginally successful. Most of the caravan anticipated the constant turnstile door into Mexico and later into the United States that had existed under previous Mexican and American presidential administrations.


Vast numbers of the would-be illegals expressed anger at being delayed by the Mexican government. Many of them say they were lied to by Mexican officials, who promised to let them through in one big wave. Even more are blaming the Mexican government for a humanitarian crisis by not accommodating the awaiting migrants with food and medicine. Some local efforts were made in the name of humanitarian assistance but were unable to provide for the needs of the numbers gathered.


The reason most often given for joining this unarmed invasion force was widespread poverty and gang violence in Honduras, one of the world's deadliest nations by homicide rate.


Elected group leaders have said the time for waiting is over. The caravan, which will be smaller than their original one; declared it would strike out last Sunday for the city of Tapachula, then on to the United States.


“Deadly Force” is the last thing these poor people need to have handed to them. The image of whizzing bullets and carnage of falling shells are meant to invoke feeling of a $50 punishment for a $.50 crime by the authority of President Trump. There are lots of ways for generals in the top brass of the U.S. Army to address the mob headed our way. The U.S. military does not, has not, and never will condone the mass killing of unarmed civilians.


Imagine if 3,000 of these would be illegal immigrants came across a force of 6.000 Marines. The mob collects itself and stares at the soldiers who outnumber them two to one. I would imagine they might just turn around.


What if they don’t turn around, is the most troubling question.


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