Tamara Pearson

United States President Donald Trump has resorted to racist comments and extreme measures in response to a procession of refugees and migrants heading towards the US.

In mid-October, thousands of Hondurans left for a journey of many weeks through Guatemala and Mexico to the US. At its peak, the procession of refugees and migrants has included more than 7000 people fleeing unemployment, poverty and gang violence.

Mexico’s incoming president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO), wants to work with US president Trump to reduce migration and tighten borders. But, Tamara Pearson writes from Puebla, his approach doesn’t address key humanitarian issues.

When it comes to immigration and refugees, Mexico’s progressive president elect, AMLO, has more in common with US President Donald Trump than you’d expect.

While many in Mexico are distracted by World Cup matches and the upcoming presidential elections, something big and strange has been going on under the radar.

Migrants and refugees staying in a refuge in Mexico City have been subjected to verbal and physical attacks recently.

I live next door to the world’s largest gun manufacturer. Here in Mexico, the murder rates are close to civil war levels.

The earthquake that hit on September 19 made my whole apartment move from side to side, like a tiny old ship caught on reckless waves. I live in the old part of central Puebla, just 51 kilometres from the epicentre.

After the quake, I watched as crowds gathered in the middle of the street — normally a busy fish and vegetable market. Children were crying, people were a bit shaken, but they seemed okay. The next morning, I walked around the city, observing the large cracks and broken corners on some of the most historic and beautiful buildings.

At the same time as President Enrique Pena Nieto deports undocumented migrants trying to enter or pass through Mexico, his own party, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), is under-paying migrants and refugees in its T-shirt factory.

Building the Commune
By George Ciccariello-Maher
Verso Books, 2016

Every commune is different, George Ciccariello-Maher says in Building the Commune, but “the coffee is always too sweet, and the process is always difficult, endlessly messy and unpredictable in its inescapable creativity”.

There is a very sinister, hellish thing behind the tepid concern that rears its head when a country like Haiti suffers a tragedy.

As 800 people died and 90% of parts of southern Haiti were destroyed by Hurricane Matthew earlier this month, leaving whole towns flattened, and people homeless and without basic infrastructure, the trending hashtag was #PrayForFlorida.


Members of the Merida communal council distributing food. Photo by Tamara Pearson.

It's been three years now of food shortages, inflation, and queues in Venezuela, and the millions of people involved in community and movement organizing have been the most affected. But they've also defied right-wing and general expectations, and even perhaps the expectations of the Maduro government, and have become stronger and better organized as a result of the hardships.

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