The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Crisis on the Border:
U.S. And Immigrant Workers Have the Same Enemy

Jan 9, 2023

The crisis along the U.S.-Mexico border has been getting worse. Thousands of desperate and freezing-cold migrants have been gathering on the Mexican side, looking for a way to get into the U.S., while facing heavily armed regiments of the U.S. Border Patrol and National Guard. Meanwhile, in U.S. border cities there are thousands more homeless migrants seeking asylum status.

Faced with this growing crisis, in early January, President Biden announced a new crackdown: anyone from Cuba, Nicaragua, Haiti and Venezuela trying to gain asylum along the U.S. border would be arrested and expelled. “My message is this…” threatened Biden, sitting comfortably in the White House, “do not just show up at the border”.

The Biden administration did claim to offer a supposed alternative for these migrants. Said Biden, up to 30,000 migrants per month from those four countries would be allowed to seek asylum. But the conditions are so restrictive and inhuman, even several prominent Democrats, including U.S. Senators Melendez and Booker, denounced them.

In fact, the Biden administration’s policy toward immigration has followed in the same repressive footsteps as the Trump administration, whom the Democrats had spent four long years denouncing. This is hardly a surprise. Under Obama a record number of migrants had been arrested and expelled. Immigrant-rights activists dubbed Obama the “Deporter-in-Chief”.

The migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border are fleeing from Mexico, the countries of Central and South America and the Caribbean. Smaller numbers of migrants are fleeing from poorer countries of Europe and Asia. This mass of humanity makes up a vast United Nations. What they all have in common is that they are fleeing worsening disasters, including hunger and starvation, repressive dictatorships, wars, and gang violence.

U.S. leaders and the news media might pretend that these catastrophes are just those country’s problems. But that’s a lie. The same big U.S. companies and banks that dominate the U.S. economy also dominate the economies of Latin America.

U.S. capital considers the entire Western Hemisphere as its empire, its own “backyard”, as they say. U.S. corporations and banks plunder the wealth produced by the working masses and peasants in all those countries. They drive the peasants off the land, creating massive unemployment and desperation. U.S. businesses in those countries take advantage of this desperation by paying the workforce extremely low wages. As these economies plunge, drug traffickers and gangsters often become the main employers and main enforcers. U.S. banks and companies do business with and enrich themselves from the loot stolen by traffickers and gangsters.

Backing up these companies and banks is the U.S. military, the mightiest in the world. The military forces in most of these countries are little more than an extension of the U.S. military, repressing the working class, protecting U.S. imperial interests first. In those few countries that have attempted to take the tiniest bit of distance from U.S. domination, such as Cuba and Venezuela, U.S. leaders impose harsh trade embargoes and threaten invasion. They then blame those governments for the hardships that U.S. imperialism itself has imposed.

In other words, U.S. corporate, financial and military domination creates the savage and barbaric conditions that force big parts of the population to flee for their lives, trying to escape hunger and starvation. U.S. leaders, the news media, and the government, always try to turn workers in the U.S. against these immigrants, blaming immigrants for the lack of jobs, the lack of security, and the worsening conditions in this country. That’s a lie!

Workers in this country have the same enemies as the migrants fleeing those countries. The same big U.S. companies and banks that are destroying jobs in this country, imposing wage and benefit cuts, and robbing workers through skyrocketing price hikes, are the same U.S. bosses who are attacking those migrants, depriving them of even the most basic rights.

Workers in the U.S. and immigrants are part of the same working class. We have the same interests. When we overcome our divisions and unite together, our fight, our ability to defend our common interests, becomes much, much stronger.