Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Trump Lies About Immigration Caravan

Donald Trump lied about the so-called immigration "caravan," saying there are "unknown Middle Easters" in there. Where did this lie come from? Daniel Dale, a reporter for the Toronto Star and a must-follow on Twitter for his coverage of Trump rallies, has the answer. Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales said that in some unspecified time period, his government had arrested close to 100 possible terrorists, including some from ISIS, and they had all been deported. That may or may not be true. Right wing media combined it with the caravan, then Fox News reported it as fact. Then Trump watched Fox News and tweeted it as fact. That's where we are in 2018.

I first blogged about the paranoid rants about Iran's presence in Latin America a full 10 years ago. They are no more true now than they were then. Fear fosters belief in falsehoods. The specific claim varies: you get some Iran, some Hezbollah, some ISIS. You used to get some Al Qaeda but that's out of fashion. The story is eternal: there are bad Muslim foreigners out there trying to hurt you, and I will protect you. Especially in the case of Latin America, there is rarely anything more than a few anecdotes strung together to back up the claims.

What do counterterrorism officials in the U.S. government think?

“We do not see any evidence that ISIS or other Sunni terrorist groups are trying to infiltrate the southern U.S. border,” said an American counterterrorism official, who was not authorized to speak publicly about confidential government threat assessments.
The only people who repeat these claims are those that want to use fear for their personal/political benefit or those who don't understand they are being lied to. Fear is pervading all of this. Fear of foreigners. Fear of non-whites. Fear of different languages. Fear of terrorism. Fear of Muslims. Fear. Fear. Fear.


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