by Stephen Lendman
Besides the Bush administration's imperial aims
and permanent war on the world, add the one at home below the radar. Its
weapons include the WTO, NAFTA, Department of Homeland Security
(DHS), FBI, CIA, NSA, NORTHCOM, militarized state and local police, National
Guard forces, paramilitary mercenaries like
Blackwater USA, and all other repressive instruments of state
power and control.
They target the people of three nations slowly
becoming one headquartered in Washington.
That's the apparent aim of those in power here
wanting one continent, "indivisible" minus old-fashioned ideas like "liberty
and justice for all" we used to believe in when, as kids, we recited our
"Pledge of Allegiance." They now have a whole new meaning. They're just
words drummed into young minds hoping they'll still believe them when
they're old enough to know better.
There may be a greater scheme for the planet ahead, but this article only
focuses on what we know about and how it's unfolding so far. It has a name,
in fact, several, but they all aim for the same thing - one nation,
indivisible, where three sovereign ones once stood, headquartered in
The Security and
Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP) or "Deep Integration" North
SPP was formerly launched at a March 23, 2005 meeting in Waco, Texas
attended by George Bush, Mexico's President Vincente Fox and Canadian Prime
Minister Paul Martin. It's a tri-national agreement hatched below the radar
in Washington containing the recommendations of the Independent Task Force
of North America.
That's a group organized by the powerful:
It advocates greater US, Canadian and Mexican
economic, political, social, and security integration with secretive working
groups formed to devise non-debatable agreements that, when completed, will
be binding beyond the power of legislatures to change. It's also taking
shape without public knowledge or consideration.
From what's already known, SPP unmasked isn't pretty.
It's a corporate-led coup d'etat against the
sovereignty of three nations enforced by a common hard line security
strategy already in play separately in each country. It's a scheme to create
North American Union under US control
without barriers to trade and capital flows for corporate giants, mainly US
It's also to insure America gets free and
unlimited access to Canadian and Mexican resources, mainly oil, and in the
case of Canada water as well. It's to assure US energy security as a top
priority while denying Canada and Mexico preferential access to their own
resources henceforth earmarked for US markets.
It's also to create a fortress-North American security zone encompassing the
whole continent under US control in the name of "national (and continental)
security" with US borders effectively extended to the far reaches of the
The scheme, in short, is NAFTA on steroids
combined with Pax Americana homeland security enforcement. It's the
worst of all possible worlds headed for an unmasked police state, and it's
the Bush administration's notion of "deep integration" or the "Big Idea"
meaning we're boss, what we say goes, no outliers will be tolerated, public
interest is off the table, and the people of three nations be damned.
It's also the next step in what GHW Bush had in mind when he
delivered his "Toward a New World Order" speech (below video) to a joint session of
Congress on another September 11 in 1990. (exactly one year before
At the onset of the "crisis in the Persian
Gulf," he said,
"We stand today at a unique and
extraordinary moment (offering) a rare opportunity to move toward....a
new world order" free from "the threat of terror....and more secure...."
He spoke of a,
"new world.... struggling to be born.... quite
different from the one we've known."
New World Order
He masked his intentions in language of peace
and the pursuit of justice while preparing for war on Iraq and the region
that's gone on for over 16 years with no end in sight.
A new Bush administration is bringing that "New
World Order" to the North American continent. Unless it can be
stopped, the streets of Boston, Baltimore and Buffalo may one day look like
occupied Baghdad or Bogota when drug barons clash and Colombia's US-financed
military and paramilitaries step in.
Establishing hard line security initiatives is key to making SPP's "deep
integration" trade agenda work. It's being planned at a time of Washington's
cooked up "war on terrorism" scheme unleashing imperial dreams not possible
without the public traumatized enough to go along.
Intended is a ramped up militarized police state
of enhanced border and homeland security. It's based on the phony notion
that doing business and protecting the national interest and public welfare
require tough measures in place to secure them at a time of threatening
As outlandish as it sounds, the scheme is moving ahead toward
implementation. It threatens Canadian, Mexican and US national sovereignty
and priorities, and their people and ours are none the wiser about it.
is a glimpse of what's ahead. It's record in 12.5 years has been disastrous
with huge numbers of job losses and growing insecurity in three countries.
SPP guarantees more of the same on steroids with small businesses hurt as
well. They continue being trampled by corporate giants they're no match for.
Many go under or are bought out if they survive. They and working people
aren't part of the SPP process, and their concerns aren't being addressed
and are guaranteed to worsen as this initiative advances.
Its doing it at secret meetings like the one from September 12 - 14, 2006 in
Banff, Alberta, Canada.
It was co-chaired by three former high officials
of the participating nations including a leading US cold warrior as Reagan
Secretary of State, George Shultz. He has all the credentials SPP
needs as a former Bechtel president and current board member also holding
memberships at the hard right Hoover Institution and American
Enterprise Institute, the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq,
and the Committee on the Present Danger military lobbying group.
They were part of a high-powered group of present and former government
officials; top military-industrial complex representatives, Big Oil and
other corporate executives; leading policy analysts; high-ranking military
brass; and a single Wall Street Journal self-styled Latin American expert
editorialist known never to let facts conflict with the state and corporate
interests she represents.
She's a frequent target of this writer, and by
now likely knows it -
Mary Anastasia O'Grady.
Except for O'Grady, no journalists attended, and no press releases followed
the meeting with its carefully scripted agenda and controlled media
blackout. Yet veteran Canadian publisher, author, activist and former
political candidate Mel Hurtig managed to get hold of the attendee
list and published it online.
He also posted topics discussed including:
"A Vision for North America" (but not a
"A North American Energy Strategy" (for
US energy security at the expense of Canada and Mexico)
"Demographic and Social Dimensions of
North American Integration"
"Opportunities for Security Cooperation"
(aka Pox Americana)
Washington dominates the planning at all
meetings with its interests getting primary attention. Along with what's
mentioned above, efforts are to create uniform business practices and
standards, ease the flow of US products into Canada and Mexico, remove labor
constraints, and eliminate unwelcome environmental standards or restrictions
interfering with the primary consideration of profits.
Also on the agenda is getting Canada and Mexico to allow more privatization
of state-run enterprises like Mexico's nationalized oil company, PEMEX, and
eventually open up Canada's medicare health care system to private
investment. The US can't negotiate this way with its western European,
Chinese or Japanese trading partners but can easily pressure most developing
nations to go along with policies harming their own people, and neighboring
accommodating ones like Canada, so long as their elite leading players share
In February, 2007, a set of SPP private sector priorities were laid out by
the North American Competitiveness Council (NACC) that serves
as an official tri-national SPP working group. It was created at the March,
2006 second annual SPP summit in Cancun, Mexico. The group is composed of
representatives of 30 giant North American companies, with powerful US ones
like GE, Ford, GM, Wal-Mart, Lockheed Martin, Merck and Chevron running
things the way Orwell described in "Animal Farm" where "All
animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."
NACC's recommendations centered on,
"private sector involvement" being "a key
step to enhancing North America's competitive position in global markets
and is the driving force behind innovation and growth."
It mentioned "border-crossing facilitation,
standards and regulatory cooperation, and energy integration (with a top
priority of) improving the secure flow of goods and people within North
America." These issues and others were discussed above explaining what
they're really all about, not the usual code language hiding their real
Without using the word, NACC stressed the importance establishing policies
for maximum profits. Its report said,
"Every measure that adds to the cost or time
to cross borders within North America is in effect a tax on enterprise,
a tax on investment (fair taxes in both cases), or a tax on jobs (a slap
at high wages) across the region, which ultimately results in
incremental costs for the consumers in all three countries (untrue as
cost savings accrue to bottom lines, not consumer pockets)."
Also mentioned was the need to make the North
American economy "work better (and strengthen) the security and well-being
of citizens" without mentioning the "citizens" NACC has in mind are dominant
corporate ones and the privileged only and doing it means hard line
restraint on the public.
SPP wants "to cut red tape and give consumers better access to safe, less
expensive, and innovative products" that only "red tape" can help assure.
Regulations, it says "impede the efficiency and competitiveness of
businesses in all three countries" except ones giving them a competitive
advantage and even though regulations, in fact, serve (or should serve) to
protect consumers, not harm them.
Recommendations in the report call for specific action in these sectors in
the order the report listed them. It placed last the one of greatest
importance, energy, but here's the order priority given: food and
agriculture, financial services, transportation, protection of intellectual
property rights and lastly energy integration specifically emphasizing
Canada's vast oil sands that make its overall reserves second only to Saudi
Canada aims to triple its oil sands production by 2015 to three million
barrels daily to feed America's insatiable energy appetite these resources
are earmarked for.
Mexico's oil is also targeted, but the report
hides NACC's aim for state oil company PEMEX to be opened to private
investment saying only while the country is "blessed with abundant reserves,
(it) faces major challenges in attracting capital" needed to realize their
potential. NACC wants Mexico to "increase the competitiveness in (its)
energy sector" without saying it wants it privatized so foreign investors
can plunder them for profit.
It also wants governments and the private sector to "work together
effectively in strengthening the competitive position of enterprises" in all
three countries saying, in effect, end all restrictions on how we do
business even if it harms your nations, people and environment. It made 50
total recommendations it wants mostly accomplished before the end of 2008
with some longer range ones targeting 2010.
They cover the range of issues discussed above
and specific ones listed below:
developing "national critical
infrastructure protection strategies" with rules providing for legal
enhancing emergency management and
implementing planned land clearance
projects, meaning less for the people and more for corporate
putting in place more business-friendly
border security practices, meaning militarizing the border
further simplifying NAFTA
rules-of-origin requirements, meaning no restrictions on regional
trade even for unsafe products
simplifying the NAFTA certification
process and requirements aiming at their total elimination
ending the consumer-protective US Animal
and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)
removing regulatory standards and
practices that impede trade even if doing it harms consumers
working toward a goal of uniform global
regulatory standards and practices regardless of the consequences or
concern about national sovereignty
easing cross-border tax burdens forcing
consumers to pick up the difference
cooperating in identifying common
financial regulatory concerns, then work to eliminate them
agreeing to unrestricted air cargo
transport services between the US and Mexico
completing a coordinated Intellectual
Property Rights (IPR) Strategy aimed at protecting them and keeping
their prices high
developing an initiative against
counterfeiting and piracy
collaborating on expanding the supply of
highly skilled people in the energy sector throughout North America
and building a model to be applied to other knowledge-intensive
sectors such as financial services.
NACC denies what's pretty clear about about its
Saying its recommendations aren't meant to
"threaten the sovereign power of any of the three countries," there's no
doubt that's the central objective. It wants a North American Union
headquartered in Washington with policies in place benefitting corporate
giants at the expense of working people.
They'll be hammered by greater job losses, fewer
social services, and a loss of personal security under militarized police
state conditions in the name of "national (continental) security" in the age
of concocted global terror threats.
North American Future
This is another secretive effort with the same objective run by the US-based
conservative Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).
It held closed-door meeting roundtables of Canadian business leaders in
Calgary as part of a project by this name. CSIS former American political
heavyweights are involved including Sam Nunn, Zbigniew Brzezinski,
Harold Brown, William Cohen, Henry Kissinger and
The agenda involves preparing a final report to
the US, Canadian and Mexican governments by September 30 expected to
recommend the benefits of integrating the three nations into a single
political, economic and security bloc.
What's known has activist groups upset including the Council of Canadians
and Coalition for Water Aid. They're protesting what they say amounts to a
sub rosa effort for corporate interests to control Canada's huge fresh water
supply, estimated at one-fifth of the world's total. They want Canadian
energy and other resources, too.
Like NACC, CSIS carefully states its aims in what it's made public so far,
showing the goals of both efforts are the same.
CSIS's North America Future 2025 Project
is its research effort to help policymakers "make sound, strategic,
long-range policy decisions about North America, with emphasis on regional
"six areas of critical importance to the
trilateral relationship: labor mobility, energy, the environment,
security, competitiveness and border infrastructure and logistics."
This is all familiar terminology to be discussed
"seven closed-door roundtable sessions
(with) 21 (to) 45 individuals - with an equal number from each nation."
They kicked off in Roundtable I discussing
"Methodology of Global and North American Projections" followed by each of
the above listed six "critical" areas. Protesters are planning to be at the
third trilateral SPP summit Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper
will host August 20 and 21 in Montebello, Quebec. They'll target SPP overall
as well as the Harper government's efforts to advance the corporate-friendly
"Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement" (TILMA) as
one more nail in the coffin of Canadian national sovereignty.
The agreement between Alberta and British Columbia took effect April 1, 2007
and mandates harmonizing regulations and standards between the two
provinces, removing barriers to economic development. Saskatchewan is now
being targeted to sign on as efforts advance overall for a borderless North
America with schemes like TILMA being used as stepping stones along the way
to achieve it. TILMA for all Canada will allow Canadian companies the right
to challenge any provincial laws conflicting the NAFTA provisions.
SPP North American integration will go much further, of course, and
Joseph Watson reported "Globalists to Formally Propose Merger of US,
Canada (and) Mexico" in his July 5 Prison Planet web site article.
In it, he says CSIS "political heavyweights"
will formally propose a North American union to Congress at summer's end
after the conclusion of their seven secret roundtable meetings to devise it.
It will contain provisions explained above that spell doom for the
sovereignty of the three participating nations. Their leaders want them to
become one in service to corporate giants' strategy for greater profits at
the public's expense.
A further aim is to harmonize regulatory
standards with the European Union (EU) in a new transatlantic
economic partnership that moves things closer to corporate America's dream
of a militarized borderless world run by them.
The North American
SuperCorridor Coalition (NASCO)
This is another organization set up to facilitate the designs of NACC
and the North American Future 2025 Project for continental
integration. It's a trilateral provincial, state and local government
coalition aligned with the goals of corporate giants in three countries. As
its name suggests, it aims to develop an international, integrated, secure
superhighway running the length of the continent.
If built, it would extend from Winnipeg,
Manitoba; Edmonton, Alberta; and Windsor, Ontario, Canada through Kansas
City, San Antonio and Laredo, Texas into Neuvo Laredo, Guadalajara, and the
ports of Manzanillo, Colima and Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico.
It's planned to be a comprehensive energy and commerce-related jugular
vein-sized artery for transportation, trade and strategic resources like
NASCO documents, DHS will be in charge of
monitoring the entire system through high-tech sensors and trackers as a
further step to securing the continent for business at taxpayers expense.
This is part of the massive infrastructure planned for North American
If completed, it'll be a boon to business at the
expense of the environment and working people throughout the continent,
always the ones to lose from grandiose schemes like this one.
Mexican President Felipe Calderon wishes to revive former President
Vincente Fox's PPP that flopped but didn't die.
It's a multi-billion dollar development scheme
to turn Southern Mexico and Central America, all the way to Panama, into a
colossal free trade paradise displacing indigenous people, destroying their
culture and sacred corn, and harming the environment for profit. Fox earlier
and Calderon now want to induce private investment by shamelessly handing
over to them the region's natural resources, including its oil, water,
minerals, timber and ecological biodiversity.
The idea is to rip into the area with new ports, airports, bullet trains,
bridges, superhighways, 25 hydroelectric dams, new telecommunication
facilities, electrical grids, and a new Panama Canal - for starters, with
more development to follow.
Also envisioned is opening the country's
wildlife reserves for bioprospecting with a huge giveaway to giant seed,
chemical and drug companies and connect everything with new highways linking
Mexico to Central America and no doubt would connect to the proposed NASCO
superhighway. The idea is to develop and facilitate business throughout the
region - meaning indigenous people have to leave to make way for it, like it
or not, which they don't and will fight it.
The area planned for development is enormous and so far stalled. It covers
102 million hectares with 64 million inhabitants in eight countries, few of
whom will benefit from a naked scheme to exploit. It masquerades as
infrastructure, private development and more without consent of the people
the way it's always done.
It's the reason the plan went nowhere so far.
It's irrelevant to the poor, rural South who'll lose everything so corporate
predators can take their land and livelihoods for private gain. They then
want to sell back to the people what's already theirs like Chiapas' fresh
water. It's 40% of Mexico's total and the reason Coca-Cola is dying to get
hold of it. It would also destroy the last significant tropical rain forest
in Chiapas' Montes Azules Integral Biosphere in the Lacandon jungle
where the government wants to remove native Mayans from lands belonging to
Enter Felipe Calderon. On April 9, he held a one-day conference in Campeche,
Mexico attended by the presidents of all Central American countries except
Belize and Nicaragua, who sent their prime minister and vice-president
Washington no doubt is pushing this scheme as it
would be a development bonanza for US corporations if implemented and a huge
opportunity for many others if ever completed.
Continent As A First Step
No nation is more militarized today than America. It spends more on national
defense and homeland security than all other nations combined.
Add to those budgets all others related to
defense, still others for intelligence and covert actions, plus the net
interest cost attributable to past debt-financed defense outlays and it
totals over $1 trillion for FY 2007 according to one analyst's estimate and
heading way above that in FY 2008 if current budget proposals pass and
become law which is almost certain.
Canada and Mexico are expected to share the load as part of Washington's
"war on terrorism" and are doing it. Supporting Washington is central for
Canada's Stephen Harper conservative administration. It includes adhering to
the 2002 Binational Planning Agreement allowing US military forces to
enter Canada on its own discretion, set up shop, and exercise authority over
Canadians in their own country. Harper's more hard line than his
He believes Canadian political and business
interests depend on it, and he's committed to serving them no matter how
ordinary Canadians feel about it. He's submissive to Washington and has been
massively ramping up military spending with plans to increase it over 50%
above 2005 levels to $21.5 billion annually by 2010.
That's chump change by US standards but a major commitment for a nation
traditionally spending at far lower levels. Canada faces no outside threat
so spending hugely on its military, unlike in the past, defies tradition and
public consensus favoring social spending that's being cut to pay for it.
It's also contrary to Canada's traditionally eschewing militarism and
foreign wars unlike its southern neighbor's thriving on them since the
Business interests, not national security or the public welfare, drive
Harper's agenda. America accounts for 87% of Canada's exports, and Canadian
businesses are closely allied with US ones. In many instances, it's as
subsidiaries with US corporations owning 20% of Canada's non-financial
sector, 33% of its oil and gas industry, and many Canadian defense companies
linked to US ones as subsidiaries or in a sub-contracting capacity.
Canada's influential Department of National
Defense (DND), its new Chief of Defense Staff, General Rick
Hillier and defense minister Gordon O'Connor are on board with
Harper as well. They're committed to ramping up the nation's military
spending and linking with America's "war on terrorism." It gives them more
power to lock in even more as SPP advances and outlines a plan for it across
Mexico has its part to play as well. With threats and fear-mongering, it's
using drug-related violence as a pretext for cracking down on simmering
unrest wherever it surfaces with plenty of US military aid to do it. The
scheme is to quiet and cow millions in the country opposing democracy,
Mexican-style. It made National Action Party (PAN) Felipe
Calderon president in a process decided before people ever voted last
July 2 the way it's always worked in Mexican politics.
It's got parts of the country, like Oaxaca, in
open rebellion against its state governor, Ulises Ruiz Ortiz (known
It also made the country a tinderbox of discontent with growing numbers in
it fed up with sham elections, decades of repression, deepening poverty and
an entrenched system of privilege for the rich and powerful.
Mega-billionaire Carlos Slim just passed Bill Gates by $8.6
billion to become the world's richest man in a country with the second
largest number of billionaires in Latin America after Brazil and among the
top ten in the world with the greatest number of them.
The US tops all nations by a wide margin with
far more in New York and Los Angeles alone than anywhere else.
Calderon to their rescue to make his own richer. He's got 30,000 troops
stomping on the people and fighting Washington's wars on Mexico's streets
and along its near-2000 mile northern border. He also has to protect state
oil company Pemex after a series of July explosions attacked the company's
gas pipelines in the central Mexican state of Guanajuato. It affected 800
companies incurring losses of $5 - 10 million a day and caused 5000 people
to be evacuated from 20 surrounding communities.
A group called the Popular or People's Revolutionary Army (EPR)
claimed responsibility saying it demands release of two men detained
unjustly in Oaxaca in May and held as political prisoners.
The group's communiqué also said the attacks
were part of a,
"national campaign against the interests of
the oligarchy and of this illegitimate government (in power from the
stolen 2006 election) that has been put in motion."
It's another sign how polarized Mexican society
is with those losing out in it striking back.
In the US, poverty is growing and the wealth disparity is unprecedented.
However, things are much worse in Mexico.
It has the world's fourth largest number of
millionaires, but poverty's been rising since the 1970s, and since the
mid-1980s the nation's poor have been reeling under the affects of
IMF-imposed structural adjustment policies mandating large-scale
privatizations and wage restraints. Then came
in 1994. It devastated millions of Mexicans, forced many north to
survive, and may by one estimate eventually displace 10 million small
farmers from their land (plus their families) into poverty assuring they'll
head north in desperation.
Today nearly one-third of Mexicans live on $2 or less a day, and millions
can't afford basic needs like enough food, decent shelter and medical care
when sick. It didn't help that Felipe Calderon allowed staple corn
prices to skyrocket causing tortilla prices to spike by 50% in most regions
devastating impoverished consumers. They can't afford the staple they rely
on, and small Mexican corn producers are even less able to compete with
subsidized imports that wasn't possible post-NAFTA.
These are the issues generating mass civil unrest and disobedience that
simmer beneath the surface when they're not visible on the streets like in
Oaxaca since last May, 2006. It's gone on in spite of harsh efforts to crush
it violently with Federal Preventative Police (PFP) and
military forces launched against it on the pretext of fighting drugs
traffickers and terrorism.
Calderon's 30,000 Mexican troops are also in a third or more of the nation's
states, civil rights are suspended and widespread abuses are reported
because the military got a mandate to,
"use all necessary force to resolve
disturbances and return peace to society."
That's just a hint of what's coming across
Mexico and the continent under full implementation of SPP that won't
tolerate opposition and will crack down hard against it.
Mexican law now allows it after passage of the
draconian "International Terrorism Law" criminalizing dissent,
calling it terrorism, and imposing harsh sentences for using,
"violence against persons, things, or public
services that spread (enough) alarm or fear in the population....to
threaten national security or pressure authorities to take certain
The press is also targeted with prohibitions
"publish(ing) or distribut(ing).... photos
or images without the express consent of those featured," a condition
impossible to meet.
Social protests may be criminalized as well with
resistance movements like the Zapatistas and Oaxacan Popular Peoples'
Assembly (APPO) labeled terrorist organizations and their leaders
subject to 40 year mandated prison terms if charged and convicted. And
President Calderon wants Mexico's Congress to pass an amendment giving him
constitutional powers to tap phones and search private residences without
first obtaining court-ordered approval under any conditions he claims is
Mexico's hard right Supreme Court of Nacional Justice (SCJN)
is supportive. Last year it declared Mexico's military can aid police in
cases of public security that can be anything the state says it is. The
Court also ruled law enforcement officials need no court-ordered warrants to
search and seize in "flagrant situations" that can also mean anything and
that violates the American Convention of Human Rights adopted as
Then there's Calderon's war on drugs and the cartels that's, in fact, a war
no different than Colombia's war on dissident resistance groups like the
FARC and ELN.
Like Plan Colombia, Washington has a
similar one for Mexico, so call it what it is - Plan Mexico with tens of
millions in funding, equipment and technology to back it up. Also call it
US-supported and funded state terrorism in a grand scheme to militarize the
country and crack down on dissent and resistance to authoritarian rule at
the federal, state and local levels. It's partnered with Washington in its
phony "war on terrorism" to maintain order, crush opposition and incarcerate
anyone interfering or in the way.
US military elements already operate inside Mexico freely and covertly, and
a 1994 Pentagon briefing paper, declassified under FOIA, hinted at a US
invasion if the country became destabilized or the government faced the
threat of being overthrown because of "widespread economic and social chaos"
that would jeopardize US investments, access to oil, overall trade, and
would create great numbers of immigrants heading north.
Plans are in place and are playing out to snuff out trouble before it
spirals out of control, and the proposed US immigration bill was to provide
funding for it through stepped up militarization. But even with the bill
defeated, the money's coming and US forces will follow if needed.
Congressional budgeting calls for millions in
Mexican military aid and massive new border detention centers for up to
30,000 detainees for starters with two notorious ones discussed below
already operating. What's planned on the border will also likely show up
anywhere in all three SPP countries to defuse social discontent by
disappearing a large new political prisoner population into black holes of
That's SPP's promise and scheme to create police
state North America making the continent safe for corporate interests by
Raymondville and Hutto
Texas Immigrant Prison Detention Centers
The Willacy immigrant detention center at Raymondville, Texas, is
oppressive enough to be called "Ritmo." It's run by the private for-profit
MTC Corporation and is currently the largest immigrant prison in the country
in the remote southern tip of the state. It cost $65 million to build, is a
"tent city," and is ringed by barbed wire and 14-foot high chain-link
It currently holds over 2000 immigrant detainees
under repressive conditions including 23 hour a day lockdowns in 10
windowless hothouses. Entire families are incarcerated there, fed poor or
insufficient food, given inadequate and delayed medical care, and treated
inhumanely in unsafe conditions for extended periods lasting months.
Conditions overall are abusive, disciplinary punishment harsh, with
detainees having to put up with no partitions or doors separating five
toilets, five sinks, five shower heads and eating areas where some days
detainees lack utensils and eat with their hands. Lights are kept on round
the clock, clothing is inadequate, and on cold days detainees are kept
outside for an allowed daily hour in short-sleeved uniforms with no warm
protective clothing like blankets, sweat shirts or jackets.
The Hutto Residential Center is another immigrant detention center in
Taylor, Texas currently holding around 400 prisoners including 200 children
and infants. Few detainees here or at other immigrant prisons committed
crimes or were charged with any, yet they're treated like criminals because
they were forced here to survive NAFTA and DR-CAFTA inflicted job losses.
They're victims of US repressive trade policies
but are treated like criminals made to suffer retribution for exploitative
state practices committed against them.
Post 9/11, the Homeland Security Act of 2002 was passed establishing
the repressive Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and in
March, 2003 its largest investigative and enforcement arm - the US
Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE). It's charged
with protecting public safety by identifying and targeting "criminal" and
"terrorist" threats to the country that include Latino and other desperate
for work undocumented immigrants forced to come here to survive.
ICE was established to apprehend them at the border or hunt them down
relentlessly once here. It has four integrated divisions, one of which is
policing our southern border and conducting terror-raid undocumented
immigrant worker roundups with those apprehended headed for abusive
detention at facilities like Raymondville and Hutto. There and at other
facilities like them, ICE-detained immigrants number around 28,000 on an
average day with totals heading for 30,000 or more by year end.
Hutto is run by Corrections Corporation of American, the largest
for-profit private prison operator in the country. It has 64 facilities in
19 states and the District of Columbia with a capacity for incarcerating
over 69,000 inmates. It's reputation is unsavory based on former prisoner
accounts of severe abuse, inadequate medical and educational services, poor
or noxious food and overall inhumane conditions including rat and
roach-infested cramped centers, inadequate basic hygiene, rapes, beatings
and deaths at their facilities.
The Hutto facility in Taylor, Texas houses immigrant detainees. It's
particularly notorious for treating young children no differently than
adults, including some too young to know where they are or why and older
ones with no idea why they're detained at all. Conditions are made worse by
abusive guards and uncaring officials.
The daily routine is stultifying and cruel. Families are awakened at 5:30AM
and allowed 30 minutes to bathe and dress. They then get 20 minutes to eat
food that's often poor quality, inedible, and/or inadequate. If children
haven't finished in time, their food is thrown out and they're left to go
Following meals, prisoners are returned to their cells, aren't allowed out,
denied sleep during the day, and forced to sit and endure boredom to pass
the time. No books are allowed, and frequent head counts are taken
throughout the day to assure no one escaped. Educational facilities for
children are pathetically inadequate at one hour a day in which practically
nothing is taught, and conditions and treatment overall are so bad the ACLU
sued DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff on March 6 on behalf of 10 abused
children at Hutto.
The US District Court judge hearing the case,
Sam Sparks, set an expedited trial date for August, agreeing with the
plaintiff that detainee treatment at Hutto fails to meet federal standards.
Police State Justice for Everyone
Post-9/11, Muslims and Latino immigrants have been targeted by the Bush
administration, falsely charged with terrorism and other crimes, and
subjected to abusive harassment and persecution.
They've been victimized by mass roundups,
detentions, prosecutions and deportations the result of baseless claims they
threaten national security. If full-blown SPP security measures are
implemented, anyone challenging, or seen threatening, state authority may
henceforth be subjected to similar harsh treatment. It's practically that
way now, but expect lots worse ahead. The rule of law will be weakened or
ignored, civil liberties and essential human needs further eroded, and state
and corporate power tightened enough to be in full control.
Dissent no longer will be tolerated, and anyone seen as a threat in an age
of a "war on terrorism" will be targeted, just as Muslims and immigrants are
today. Preparations are in progress for mass detentions with Halliburton the
beneficiary of a DHS contingency contract worth up to $385 million to build
US-based detention centers.
Their stated purpose is for "detention and
processing" in case of an "emergency influx of immigrants....or to support
the rapid development of new programs (for planned) expansion facilities
(able to hold 5000 or more persons)."
This language provides cover for planned concentration camps targeting
anyone for indefinite detention as a perceived enemy of the state or threat
to national security any time henceforth. The idea is to have facilities
ready in case martial law is declared for any reason. It might include the
kind of major "terrorist" attack DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff
practically signaled is coming later this summer to a Chicago Tribune
editorial board July 10.
ABC News also hyped the story citing a
new FBI analysis of Al-Queda messages warning of,
"continued messages that convey their
strategic intent to strike the US homeland and US interests worldwide
(that) should not be discounted as merely deceptive noise."
The rest of the corporate media jumped on the
story as well to prepare the public for full militarization of the country
if what Chertoff and a number of intelligence analysts believe is virtually
The Pentagon is ready if it comes with an action plan prepared in a DOD
document called "Strategy for Homeland Defense and Civil Support." It
envisions an "active, layered defense" both within and outside the US
"transform US military forces to execute
homeland defense missions in the.... US homeland."
It lays out a strategy for increased
reconnaissance and surveillance to "defeat potential challengers before they
threaten the United States." It also "maximizes threat awareness and seizes
the initiative from those who would harm us."
These are ominous developments signaled with very dangerous language. It
suggests the likelihood of an impending terror attack severe enough to
warrant suspension of the Constitution followed by martial law. It means
anyone may be considered a threat to national security and detained
indefinitely with or without evidence to prove it. It further empowers the
state, through the military, to act preventively through mass roundups and
No one will be safe or spared if targeted and
will be subject to police state justice granting them none.
A full-scale militarization of the country can be implemented any time on
what a 1988 Reagan era Executive Order 12656 called any "national
security emergency" defined as,
"Any occurrence, including natural disaster,
military attack, technological or other emergency, that seriously
degrades or seriously threatens the national security of the United
Other repressive legislation's already in place
as well. Under Patriot and Military Commission Acts justice,
constitutional rights are severely weakened, and we're all "enemy
combatants" stripped of our habeas and due process rights, subject to
indefinite detentions, denied our right to counsel and at the mercy of
military tribunal justice with no right of appeal.
Welcome to North America's Security and Prosperity Partnership
guaranteeing it to elitist interests by denying it to the people of three
nations. They're to be parts of the new "united continent of America," or
North American Union, run by dark forces in Washington that won't move out
when a new president moves in January 20, 2009.