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June 8, 2024 249 mins

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Episode Transcript

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Speaker 1 (00:01):
Also media, Hey everybody, Robert Evans here, and I wanted
to let you know this is a compilation episode. So
every episode of the week that just happened is here
in one convenient and with somewhat less ads package for
you to listen to in a long stretch if you want.
If you've been listening to the episodes every day this week,
there's going to be nothing new here for you, but

(00:23):
you can make your own decisions.

Speaker 2 (00:26):
Welcome to ikodefen here a podcast being recorded something like
nineteen hours into bargaining with managements, thus at the peak
of maximal derangements, and also about an hour after former
President Donald John Trump was convicted of thirty four felony
accounts of falsifying business records for his election time payoff
of Stormy Daniels. We can only hope that this will

(00:47):
bring voting race to a long suffering felons of Florida.
And realizing that kind of sounds like a joke, it's
actually not. It is in fact, really messed up that
you can just disenfranchise an entire class of people and
maybe the law hurting someone famous will do something good. Now,
that's all the time we have to talk about Trump
right now. You know, if you want, if you want
to hear more about that, you can go to literally

(01:08):
everyone who's ever done any media related thing. Ever, however,
we now have to talk about the other candidate in
the twenty twenty four election, Joe Biden, which means this
is all the fun you're getting for this episode. It
is now time for you to suffer and with me
to talk about suffering, and specifically the suffering of my Well,
I was gonna say my people like like one of

(01:29):
my people's question work, I don't know, identities complicated. Sometimes
you're more than one thing at a time. Is Karin Green,
who's part of a Southern transfem collective launching a very
long list of projects that you will be hearing you
out very shortly. She also used to be a work
on policy for the Equality Federation and for the Transientered
Law Center. Yeah, Karin, welcome to the show.

Speaker 3 (01:49):
Thank you so much, happy to be here, and yeah,
I'm excited to get the opportunity to kind of talk
about maybe what is behind some of the press releases
and the HRC list of accomplishments that gets when I
complain about lack of action on transpolicy.

Speaker 2 (02:05):
You know, I really should have looked this up the forehead.
But I once one of my friends dragged me in
college to a queer movie screening that I went to
because I hadn't eaten all day and they had food.
It ended up being this this really great little kind
of I think it's like an indie movie thing that's
about this group of queers robbing stealing a blood diamond
from the from the HRC. Great movie, ten out of ten.

(02:29):
I wish I remember what it was called.

Speaker 3 (02:30):
In the movement at the time, we all joked that
HRC stood for peculiar Ron and Glinton rather than campaign
because of how in the tank they were.

Speaker 2 (02:37):
So yeah, So, as as the listener may may have guests,
we need to talk about Joe Biden's quite frankly, really
terrible record on trans writes.

Speaker 4 (02:49):
And to do that, we.

Speaker 2 (02:50):
Need to talk a little bit about where the power
of the president comes from, because, you know, the sort
of traditional liberal wonk theories of the president tend to
either focus on like the discursive effects of what the
president says, or like the president's ability to like negotiate
with Congress to get bills passed. But this largely is
not where the president's power comes from. The president's power

(03:11):
comes from. I guess three things, two of which are
very similar. One is, you know, I mean just literally
the command of the military. Right the president, since since
Barack Obama, although Bush was doing similar things, has claimed
the legal authority to kill any man, woman, or child
the moment they leave us or regardless of her citizenship status.
This is this is the legal foundation of the drone
program and it is still in place to this day.

(03:34):
You know, the second one, I'm talking a lot about
Obama here because Obama weirdly established a lot of these
kind of legal frameworks. But you know, the second one
has to do with their ability to control the nation's
intelligence services. You know, I mean one of the things
that Obama did was personally coordinate the mess like multi
agency crackdown on occupy. And then the third thing, and

(03:55):
this is where really most of the power is is
through the unbelievably massive federal bureaucracy. So like I do
kind of get an assessed of this, and anytime you
hear the words the Department of that is the thing
the president has the ability to do shit with that.
That that is that is a very simplified version of it.
But yeah, you know, when when when you're dealing with

(04:18):
an office's power is largely bureaucratic, it means that if
you want to figure out what they're actually doing, you
have to dig really deep into the depths of the
American bureaucracy. So okay, let's let's let's do that. And yeah,
first I want I want to ask you about p
p a c A one five five seven, which is

(04:40):
a part of the the Affordable Care Act. Otherwise, is
it still better known as Obamacare? Do the kids Obamacare?

Speaker 3 (04:47):
Yeah, they reclaimed it. I think the lips took it back.

Speaker 4 (04:51):
I had.

Speaker 2 (04:51):
I've been having this realization that people don't remember Obama
era stuff. Is why I'm saying. Oh, like I said,
I started saying Ferguson to people and they had no
idea what I was talking about. And I was like,
oh no, we ventured the k we ventured the disaster era.
So yeah, you can you talk about what that is
and what what it sort of says about what the
Biden administration isn't isn't doing.

Speaker 3 (05:13):
Yeah, absolutely, So, as you mentioned, it's part of the
Affordable Care Act, and so section fifteen fifty seven is
the regulatory implementation of the non discrimination.

Speaker 5 (05:23):
Parts of the Affordable Care Act.

Speaker 3 (05:25):
Back in the day when we were fighting to prevent
Trump from rolling back some fifteen fifty seven protections, we
actually are comf people came up with a much sexier
name than section fifteen fifty seven, but it never took
off with any of the policy people, and so I
don't even remember what I'm supposed to be calling it.
So yeah, I never hear people say section fifteen fifty seven.

(05:47):
What they're referencing is the basically the non discrimination part
of the Affordable Care Act. And so the Affordable Care Act,
as people have probably noticed by now, touches practically all
of the US healthcare system and has extended, especially through
Medicaid expansion, federal dollars into healthcare even more than they
had been previously with the supplants for insurance through Medicaid

(06:12):
expansion and those kinds of things, And so there's actually
a lot of control that the Department of Health or
Health and Human Services and associated other parts of bureaucracy
like Center for Medicaid, Medicare Services, those kinds of things
have over implementation. And so one of the ways that
this works. Is when legislators write a law, they don't

(06:36):
go into all the details. They just pass a law.

Speaker 1 (06:38):
Right.

Speaker 3 (06:38):
And so most times, especially at the federal level, after
a law has passed, the relevant agencies that are going
to be dealing with that part of the law work
on and issue rules or regulations. You might hear them
called either thing, but they mean the same thing, right.
So it's basically the additional agency policies and procedures that
they issue through the formal process governed by the Adminied

(07:00):
Rate Procedures Act. Very exciting, I know this is going
to be like just bombshell episode.

Speaker 4 (07:04):
Terrible stuff is coming. Don't worry. Hold, oh you got
a hold on. It's going to get really bad.

Speaker 3 (07:10):
I'm giving you the foundation to make sure you can
get maximally angry along with me. And so they create
the rest of the implementation of the laws at that
Congress passes, right. And so in this particular case, for
section fifteen fifty seven, it deals specifically with non discrimination,
So it deals with race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, any

(07:30):
any equality you can you can you typically find in
federal non discrimination laws actually in the fifteen fifty seven
and so it's obviously been kind of going back and
forth as a political football between the Obama administration and
then the Trump administration, and then I don't even know
if I'm going to give Biden credit for treating it
as a football. And so there's this regulatory process that

(07:54):
has been going forward and been rolled back and going
forward and been rolled back, and then simultaneousley there are
several I don't know the current number, but several court
cases over fifteen to fifty seven from various eras, like
I think there's still at least one case ongoing from
the Obama era fifteen fifty seven, there's some ongoing from

(08:16):
the Trump rag and then obviously folks might have seen
in the news that states like mine louisianatt that have
a governor and attorney general super focused on raising their
own profile have already filed suit against the recently issued
Biden era Section fifteen fifty seven regulation. And so there
is a lot of fighting around trans people specifically. Go figure.

(08:39):
It has been We've been hot right now for the
last four years or so. It's not been a super
exciting time, and it is actually impacted if you know
how to read the policy TA leaves. It has actually
impacted what we have gotten out of the Biden administration
in terms of actual trans policy. And I've been doing

(09:00):
transpolicy for a very long time, start at the state
level in Louisiana. You can't get paid to do a
queer policy in Louisiana. So I moved out to Oakland
to work for Transit Or Law Center for a while,
and that was actually where I created the joint Protect
trans Health campaign. It was actually the first ever coordinated
collaboration between the National Center for Changuer Quality and Transgeneral

(09:22):
Law Center. They had never formerly worked together on something before,
but for trans policy folks, Section fifty and most of
the country. Frankly, obviously, healthcare is like the thing right.
It's always been really terrible in this country, no matter what,
and so taking care of people's which should be a

(09:45):
right to access healthcare, has been really really important. I
kind of considered it since twenty seventeen the most important
trans policy issue to work on. And so this is
definitely kind of to the sense that you are a
nerd like me, and you have, you know, headline regulatory
actions that you're looking out for and hoping to influence

(10:07):
and doing things around this is kind of the premiere
regulatory action. In my opinion, in the trans polacy space,
I'm trying to what it should ideally do is safeguard
and guarantee trans people's access to healthcare, including gender affirming care.
It does not if you actually read the five hundred

(10:27):
and fifty eight page final rule, But if you just
read like the press releases and the quotes that the
head of Human Rights Campaign give, you might have a
different understanding currently, And that's what I'm hoping we can
kind of get into today.

Speaker 2 (10:42):
Yeah, and unfortunately before we get into that, we have
to do one of the other things that is required
of trans people, which is promoting capitalism if you want
to have a job.

Speaker 4 (10:52):
So here are some ads.

Speaker 2 (10:57):
God, we're going to end up with like some kept
paid ad from Aluisi at our rep or something.

Speaker 3 (11:03):
Oh, they don't even need they have a superjority that
they've been flexing muscle on.

Speaker 4 (11:06):
They don't need to.

Speaker 6 (11:07):
They're fine, and we are back with some chili.

Speaker 4 (11:21):
So, yeah, let's talk about what has.

Speaker 2 (11:24):
Been happening and what was actually in the rules that
no one who's not a bureaucrat or a policy activist
has actually read.

Speaker 3 (11:33):
Yeah, so I think a little more backgrounds will will
help you get just as angry as I need you
to be, which is you know, So the administration is large.
There are a lot of people that work in the
executive branch, and a lot of them have, especially with
this administration, where a lot of folks actually did come
kind of directly from the Obama administration. They have relationships

(11:54):
with issue advocacy organizations. So most of the nationals, the
queer national organizations, avaccine nonprofits have relationships with executive branch folks.
And so when an executive branch agency like HHS is
working on a regulation that involves queer trans people, the

(12:14):
way it worked in the Obama administration, there was actually
very close collaboration between for example, the National Center for
Changing or Quality and the administration in the writing and
issuance of the first Obama era fifteen to fifty seven
productive regulation. And so before the election and then during transition,

(12:35):
the bid administration was obviously in contact back and forth
with all kinds of issue of secreups, not just the
queer movement but everybody, and they made commitments to the
queer movement that you know, it would be a fairly
smooth transition to working with them like we had worked

(12:55):
with the Obama administration. If you think back a little while,
that was before the kind of current fascist humanization campaign
had really kicked off, and so these commitments were made
kind of in the overturn window from before the last
four years of hell or three years of how however

(13:15):
you want a time it when they decided to come
after trans people so hard.

Speaker 2 (13:21):
This was back in the kind of housey in days.
I don't even know if people remember this right now,
but like it used to be a thing where democratic
like presidential candidates would attack each other for not being
radical enough on trans healthcare. That was the thing that
happened on the debate stage in like twenty nineteen. It
feels like seven lifetimes ago now.

Speaker 3 (13:39):
Yeah, And keep in mind that Biden. You know, every
six months he tweets that he has our back or whatever,
and then he's also called us the civil rights issue
of our time. So you know, there there are some
opportunities to question that and see if he stacks up.
And my personal and professional opinion, this is what I do,

(14:00):
is that he absolutely doesn't right. And so one of
the things that you would really really want out of
a section fifteen to fifty seven regulation in a context
where states have been passing trans healthcare bands, is that
you would want a section fifteen fifty seve regulation that
deals with preventing transcrimination and healthcare. You would want that

(14:22):
to strongly and efficiently preempt state bans against trans care
as violating a federal rule against non discrimination. And because
these things are you have to follow the Administrative Procedures
Act when you're issuing regulations as a federal agency, and
most states actually are the same a similar kind of process,

(14:44):
and so you kind of have to The agencies have
to show how they got to the final rule. So
they issue a draft rule, invite comment. There's a comment
period that you might have seen organizations asking you to
submit comments for before, and then they're actually required to
read and respond to all those comments. And so if

(15:05):
you actually pull up the fifteen fifty seven final rule,
it's actually one of it sounds like even wonkier than
for example, looking at a bill, But because of the
Administrative Procedures Act and the way they have to respond
to comments, there's actually a lot more kind of conversational
prose or not conversational, but you know, regular ask pros
and not terrifying legal language in this stuff. That is

(15:26):
them directly addressing comments people organizations have made and explaining
their reason. And so one of the things that I
think is most kind of emblematic of how we've been
failed and thrown under the bus is because of this
process where they have to kind of show you how
the sausage is made. You can look up in this

(15:48):
regulation and see that for some initial contacts, we were
promised this would come out year one, and then we
were promised it would come out year two, and then
year three, and then I have actually heard that they
were trying to push it, asked the election, and we
kind of forced their hand on it. So you can
tell that they initially wrote the first draft in this

(16:09):
regulation to kill healthcare bans, to federally preempt healthcare bands.
There's actually I did a Twitter thread on this about
how one sentence that existed in the draft version of
the fifteen to fifty seven role that one sentence alone
could take down. I think the one I used for

(16:30):
an example was Arkansas's trans healthcare ban or Missouri's actually
potentially because that what that sentence did is it laid
out very very clearly that a determination that trans healthcare
is never helpful or useful and can never be provided
does not meet the bar for considered medical reasoning, right,

(16:54):
and so states just can't do it. And that's fantastic,
because that is only what these healthcare bands do, right.
And many of them, I think the one I used
as an example even actually have include in the non
effective text kind of the whereas preamble section of their bands.
They can't help themselves. They go into all this flowery
language about how trans care is never good and it's

(17:16):
always harmful, in all this stuff right in garbage. And
this sentence spoke directly to those trans healthcare bands, and
it made a firm commitment to address them as a
whole as they were happening right at the federal government
to state level. And if you read the final rule,

(17:37):
you will get to see them strike that sentence out
and read their reasoning for striking that out. And so
you actually had this language that was very clear and
very strong, written very relatively early on in his term,
when at the time there were only a handful of
trans healthcare bands that had passed, right, And so it

(18:01):
didn't And so now I'm just offering conjectures and form conjecture,
conjecture informed by reading.

Speaker 1 (18:07):
Policy tea leaves.

Speaker 3 (18:09):
But it is my suspicion that at that time, because
there weren't that many trans healthcare bands to preempt, they
were more than willing to maintain, you know, to fulfill
their commitment to us and to issue the kind of
regulation that we had talked about. But as time went
on and the fascist humanization campaign started and ramped up,

(18:31):
and healthcare bands rapidly spread throughout the country. I've been
doing this for a decade and I've never seen anything
like this in any area of policy before. All of
a sudden, if you're holding a card that nuke's health
state healthcare bands, when you wrote it, that card was
only going to nuke a few two or three trans

(18:53):
healthcare bands, right, And if you're the federal government, you
know you can expect to steam rolls and just a
handful of states like that. But then later on, at
this point I forget the exact number, but it's something
like twenty twenty to twenty three states have healthcare bands implemented.
And now if you're holding a card that nuke's healthcare bands,

(19:15):
you don't really get to pick and choose which healthcare
bands you're going to. Now you're going to you have
to commit to new call of them if you play
that card, and that just was not something that they
seemed willing to do when it was going to make
the waves that it would make with you know, twenty
to twenty three or whatever, states being prete empted and
required to make sure that trans people have healthcare access.

(19:38):
And keep in mind that during this period, not just
did more states past these healthcare bands, but the kind
of national discussion and focus on trends people deteriorated horrifically, right,
And so not only were the stakes higher in terms
of the kind of policy confidence in projecting your politics,

(19:58):
but also there was just I assume those lanyards run
horrible polls all the time, right, and saw that we
were losing points in terms of how the public views
transpeople because there's a lot of money being poured into this,
and just made the horrible unethical and moral calculations that

(20:20):
democrats make decided that trans people weren't worth it. And
so you can see them across that strike that part
out of the final fifteen to fifty seven room, and
it no longer contains any language even approaching that that
is written to address states as a whole, and it
is mostly what is in there at this point is

(20:41):
the same thing that they've been telling us to do
for the last over a decade, which is, individual trans
people who just happened to encounter discrimination and health care,
you just submit an OCR complaint, an HHSOCR complaint. OCR
I stands for Office Civil Rights. So you would think
an Office of Civil Rights maybe be proactive and notice

(21:02):
that a state that has banned trans healthcare and some
places even criminalized it might be ready for some enforcement,
some broad enforcement. And yet they have they have maintained
in this final rule that they expect individual trans people
to file individual OCR complaints every time and that they
will address each one on a case by case basis.

(21:23):
They reiterate this at least a dozen times. It is
one of the most offensive parts of all this, right
because that's the only thing that AJS has ever told
us about this.

Speaker 2 (21:34):
Yeah, which is just nuts, Like that's not an actual
systemic way of addressing Can you imagine if they had
done this with like literally any other kind of civil
rights issue, Like you know, okay, we get we get,
we get a state banned on gay marriage, and the
Department is like, yeah, you have to submit a complaint
to us individually, Like that's absolutely nuts.

Speaker 3 (21:58):
Or are oriented like states were band insulin or something,
you know, right, like any other any other facet of healthcare.
Just nobody would take that. Yeah, everyone to expect, Yes,
the federal government will come in to make sure that
people in Louisiana can still access insulin.

Speaker 2 (22:13):
Yeah, And instead you have this just you know, I
mean a complete abrogation of any like, not just any responsibility,
but I mean any attempt to actually, like not even
like any attempt to do anything to stop any of
these bands that are you going to kill a like
not in significant number of people like me?

Speaker 7 (22:33):
Yeah.

Speaker 3 (22:35):
And one of the things I'd like to win is
one of the benefits of of you know, the photogram
having to follow the Administrative Procedures Act is they have
to talk about the previous rules in this space, and
so you also get really, I was gonna say funny,
but they're not funny. They're they're deeply depressing paragraphs about
how their final rule is worse than Obama's final rule. Right,

(22:58):
they have and they have to explain it and open
One of the things that I'll reference here is that
Obama's final rule I believe, involved directing the Office of
Al Rights to conduct a disparate impact analysis on you know,
marginalized populations to determine if there were discriminatory outcomes in
healthcare access, kind of even as a closed system, so

(23:19):
they can look in from the outside and be like, oh, okay,
all the transmuble in the state can't access.

Speaker 7 (23:25):
X, Y and z.

Speaker 3 (23:27):
So whether that whether there is a discriminatory you know
law or not, there is a disparate impact on this population,
and that means we need to take enforcement action. And
you get to read the Biden HHS right about how
they're not going to do that.

Speaker 2 (23:41):
Actually, no, no, don't, please, please do please do not
do any analysis to see your trans people are being oppressed.
This would look really bad for us. Yeah, speaking speaking
of looking bad for us, you know, you know what
won't look bad. It's if you buy these products and
services from this ad that hopefully isn't I don't know.

(24:03):
I feel I feel like we're kind of running We've
run through the cycle of the terrible ads, so I
feel like we're about we're on the precipice of there
being another bunch of ads they put on the show
without telling.

Speaker 4 (24:13):
Us that we can complain about. But for now these
ones and we are back.

Speaker 2 (24:31):
Yeah. And I think this is something that I don't know.
I think most people do not know this. I don't
I think most people do not understand that not only
is the Biden administration not being proactive, it's like they're
actively rolling back protections, and they're actively rolling back things
that the agency used to do under Obama, which was
you know, in most other respects.

Speaker 4 (24:51):
I don't know.

Speaker 6 (24:52):
Again, I don't.

Speaker 2 (24:53):
Really like, can I expect the people who listened to
the show to remember the Obama administration?

Speaker 8 (24:57):
Now?

Speaker 2 (24:57):
I don't know.

Speaker 3 (24:59):
I mean, I was one of the people who came
of aged off my parents' healthcare plan kind of exactly
right before kind of primary PPACA productions kicked in, right
and so I had a several month period where they
could still deny you health insurance using or being trands

(25:21):
as a pre existing condition, as they don't god and
so that that that actually did happen to me. I
applied for health insurance and they sent me a letter
that said, you have your trends. That's a pre existing condition.
We're not going to sell your health and so I
so I actually did several months later, you know, those
protections kicked in, and the Obama administration actually did do
some kind of proactive work to make sure that those

(25:43):
were spread around the country. Like it's not nowhere never
has been as guys, good and throw.

Speaker 4 (25:48):
As it should be.

Speaker 3 (25:49):
But it worked for me here because then when I
implied again, I was not denied for being trance.

Speaker 2 (25:54):
So yeah, I mean, I think that's the kind of
general thing I want to say about that too, is like,
you know, there were things where, like on these kind
of issues where the obomaministration was a lot better broadly
if you look at the rest of their policy, it
was like significantly further right in the Biden administration.

Speaker 4 (26:10):
Like Obama.

Speaker 2 (26:11):
Obama tried to tried to like put up grand bargain
together to destroy Medicaid, Medicare, social Security, Like he tried
to do that and he was stopped by the Republicans. Right,
it was like, I need to give people a sense
of like how far right Obama was even compared to Biden,
and yet the REGs are getting worse.

Speaker 3 (26:33):
Which is on our issues. He was fairly fairly good, right, Yeah,
and one thing that I think contributes to people not
you know, I can't blame folks for not understanding this
is happening because the queer advocacy orgs are not talking
about things this way, right, and I think possibly one
of them. The most illustrative things I can point out

(26:55):
is when the first title nine n pr M drops.
So NPRM stands for Notice of prop was rulemaking. So
if I drop that again, it's a screw up on
my part. I don't mean to use the dragon, but
so that when they issue their first draft of a
regulation and invite comment in a comment period follows.

Speaker 9 (27:11):
Right.

Speaker 3 (27:12):
So the title nine inn PRM that they release around
trans students' access to sports programs and education. If you
read it the language of the actual draft policy, not
the press releases people put out about it, it is
functionally States rights for athlete bands.

Speaker 10 (27:32):
Right.

Speaker 3 (27:33):
It gives the States rights to come up with a
justification that involves fairness and safety, and then they will
have deference to pursue or whatever, which is not just
some of the ways they've done fifty fifty seven as well.

Speaker 2 (27:50):
Yeah, well, and like to make it explicitly clear. What
they're saying is that if you, as a stake can
come up with a good enough reason, you were allowed
to discriminate against trans people and prevent them. Yeah, exactly
doing sports, which she's like, again, it is a vert
discrimination based on gender, which you should not be able
to do legally. However, come the absolute cowardly shits at

(28:12):
the Biden administration. We're like, no, you could actually do this,
go ahead to have fun.

Speaker 3 (28:18):
Fascist humanization marks. And so, if you remember back to
that time, all of the national queer organizations put out
these glowing press release. So I'm on the policy side, right,
I'm not on the comp side. I reanalyzed the policy,
I tell them what it means, and then it's unfortunately
out of my hands at that point, right, and the
national queer organizations have been messaging basically all of these

(28:41):
things as great wins moving things forward. Biden truly the
first trans president. We love them, stuff like that, right,
And so they did not for that title nine in BRM.
And then several days later, the Representative Zoe Zephyr, a
Translin represent state representative from Montana, organized the out trans state,

(29:06):
trans and non binary state legislators from around the country
to release an open letter which you know, condemned the
title nine NPRM for.

Speaker 4 (29:15):
Being dog shit. Yeah, and so that's that's.

Speaker 3 (29:18):
I think maybe the one and only kind of a
crack in the in the facade that has gotten through
over the past couple of years is when you know,
this thing came out after the police people said this
is how did this happen?

Speaker 1 (29:30):
What the hell?

Speaker 3 (29:31):
And then the comms came out and they were great,
glowing you know, he love trans people. And then you know,
the state trans elected is actually said no, this this
fucking socks actually right, But that has not really happened
for anything else because they're you know, most of the
people who do what I do, they're you know, specialized
in each and there are many jobs for it, and

(29:54):
you could could I could speak at length about how
you don't get to speak your mind if you want
to continue to stay with kind of movement employment in
this sector. And so in terms of publicly being able
to speak about how we're being thrown under the bus currently,
there are not many folks with the expertise who are

(30:15):
free to do that.

Speaker 2 (30:17):
Yeah, I mean, I remember, like I'm not a policy person, right,
Like I have I have, you know, part I mean
parts of this is an analytical thing, right, Like I
bailed out of going to law school because I had
to read that, I had to read the Clean Air Act,
and I was like, I will literally die if I
have to do this for a living. But you know,
I remember when when the sort of Title nine stuff
came out and when and I remember trying to talk

(30:39):
about it. I remember like the pushback that I got
for being like, wait, this sucks. It was enormous. It
was this like incredible sort of broad front pr campaign
from just so many different and not even just you know,
it had filtered down to the point where like it
wasn't just like these origs. It was like just like
like the random people on Twitter who's supposed to follow
policy stuff were only in line. Like everyone was coming

(31:01):
in and it was just like absolutely terrifying, Like kind
of those people.

Speaker 3 (31:07):
Don't actually read policy. That's the thing that policy reporters don't, right.

Speaker 4 (31:11):
Yeah, and so many such cases, and.

Speaker 3 (31:17):
So most people who report on policy or or kind
of are follow policy do tend to kind of stick
in the realm of those press releases and initial initial
articles based on press releases and so if there is
not kind of sincerity and truthfulness on the part of

(31:37):
the orgs that are the trusted, you know, speakers in
this space, then this stuff gets successfully laundered. And I
think it's intentional. I think that it, on one hand,
is an intentional move to prevent and stemy actual grassroots
organizing around sincere and real and pressing trans needs. Because

(32:02):
if you're trying to get a lot of people fired
up about trans healthcare is like on fire, and half
the like half the trans kids in the country don't
have we have to like this is act up shit time. Right,
But if everybody that you know is on your email list,
if most of them have seen HRC and NCT and
all these places put out these blowing press releases, people

(32:24):
are like, you're crazy. If things are fine, Jo's moving
things for We're good. And then also I think they
have kind of backed themselves into a corner in terms
of how a lot of Libs have have backed themselves
into a corner at this point. Right, they know that
Trump is worse on policy, even if Biden has done
barely anything, Trump is obviously worse for trans people, and

(32:47):
so they're they're allowing electoral weirdness to control actual kind
of policy coms in a way that I find really
really frustrating. And then I think is not doing trans people,
especially in the South. It's not treating them with the
respect that they deserve from their the organizations that claim

(33:08):
to represent them.

Speaker 2 (33:10):
Yeah, and this is a thing that Okay, this is
this is going to sound like a weird sidebar, but
I promise if you follow this train of logical do worthy.
This is something you actually this is a debate You
get a lot more clearly in Latin American social movements,
where because because their social movements are significantly stronger from
the social movements in the US, right, they are their

(33:30):
own sort of coherent like political basis.

Speaker 4 (33:33):
You get this like a labor movement.

Speaker 2 (33:36):
Yeah, yeah, well, I mean, like you know that this
is the thing about the labor movement. Like you know,
if if you look at for example, Bolivia, which has
very very strong social movements or like has traditionally had
very strong labor movements in a lot social movements in
the last twenty thirty years, right, I mean, like their
labor movement throws dynamite at bosses, right, Like you know,
so like they have they have a very strong movement.
And but one of the questions of these movements, and
this is something that has just torn apart the m

(33:59):
as they're there's sort of like supposedly movement political party,
is this question of to what extent should you integrate
your social movement with the state. And you know, and
this is a long this is a long running debate
in Budge social movements. Various movements have picked different directions.
Some of them have become very unfolded in the states,

(34:19):
some of them have resisted it. And there are you know,
there are benefits and problems with both. But one of
the big issues with trying to sort of incorporate yourself
into the state is that the state isn't just a
kind of neutral body. It will, you know, it's it's
not just that you're working with the state. The state
is also working with you, and it will attempt to
and in its political parties will attempt to seize control

(34:42):
of your organization and turn your organization into just a
sort of into you know, into basically a pr outlet
for whatever thing it's doing. And this becomes a real
problem when you're you know, your your party is trying
to screw you.

Speaker 9 (34:55):
Yeah.

Speaker 2 (34:55):
I mean this came to ahead in twenty twelve where
there was a huge fight in Bolivia over a plan
by the MS to build a highway through a bunch
of indigenous land. And this this basically split the base
of the party, right because the MAS had been sort
of an indigenous socialist movement, and it got split between
the people who supported building this growth of the people who didn't.
And so like even Moreles has riot police stormed the

(35:18):
offices of one of the of one of the indigenous
federations and like replaces them, like replaces their leadership with
guys who are loyal to him, who will push this
thing through, right. And you know, I mean the reason
I'm talking about this is the kind of social movement
stuff I studied in college, right, And it's like and
now in the US, we were like kind of starting
to get to the point where we have real social movements, right,
and we've seen sort of like BLM, you know, we

(35:39):
we sort of have something that is a career movement,
and we're running into exactly the same thing where yeah,
like if you you know, this is the thing you
can talk about more stifically in the US, but it's like, yeah,
like these orgs are on are are in in the
middle of this sort of state capture process, right, and
this has having really really dogshit effects on queer people

(35:59):
because is when when these organizations are you know, become
becomes sort of media arms or become sort of political
arms of these party apparatuses. They're not representing you, They're
representing the party and I and.

Speaker 3 (36:13):
I think that one one of the easiest places to
kind of see the dynamic that you and I are
talking about in current US politics is in the discourse
around palace and any liberation.

Speaker 4 (36:22):
Right.

Speaker 3 (36:22):
Yeah, if you try to talk with anybody about palace
and any liberation, you get beset upon on all sides
by people saying, well, do you want Trump to win?
You think Trump's gonna be better? This like electoral project
takes precedence over you know, politics guided by core values
so quickly and so overwhelmingly.

Speaker 2 (36:44):
Yeah, And I mean, and it's it's accelerated to a point.
I mean, this is something I remember in it during
the Trump years, we would we would joke about this
about sort of the spinelessness of liberalism, Like it used
to be a joke that like if the democratic president
did a genocide, people would go, oh, well, you still
have to support them because the other tup and now
it's literally happening.

Speaker 3 (37:02):
Yeah you know, I mean well, so I actually started
working at Nationals. I took the drop at transfer A
Law Center right after Trump took office, and so my,
you know, it was very easy for me to especially
as someone who you know, had never worked at large
avoccine nonprofits before, because go figure, there's no money in

(37:24):
doing transwork in the South that was scrappy and under
resource as fuck. I got to delude myself, I think,
because you know, Trump is such a uniquely dangerous force
that a lot of people alongside me and the movement
were had the same shared the values with me, because
I could see them being equally strident and vocal on

(37:47):
kind of all the bad things that were happening. And
then you know, it's almost it's a tire joke at
this point, but you know, Biden took over and the
kids were still in cages and everybody else shut up,
and I looked around and I'm like, wait, I'm.

Speaker 2 (37:58):
Still I still okay, Yeah, the hell or all go
Like I want to yell about that for a second,
because like so I kind of like this, this was
like my sort of well, I mean, I guess my
technical origin story. There's a slight longer thing this, but
like my me being a person that any would listen
to as a product of being involved in occupy Ice
and like you know, going out and finding like you know,
I mean, the sort of horror of that, like you

(38:19):
can fucking hear people yelling from the inside of these
buildings that they're being fucking held in. And now, you know,
Biden like, well, we'll do a longer thing about this
at some point, but like Biden is you know that
that fucking bill that they were trying to pass like
absolutely unbelievably fascist one saying that the president has the
right to close the border. She's trying to just fucking
do it anyways.

Speaker 3 (38:41):
Yeah, and and they're still doing concpts about it making
them they think it makes them look good.

Speaker 2 (38:46):
No, it's it's like it's they're they're they're doing just
pure evil. Like again, like literally, without like James and
his friends, there would be pile like there's still are
corpses floating up in the fucking rivers on the border,
but there would be fucking like there would be stacked
like mounds of corpses of people who fucking starved or died,
Like if literally James and his friends weren't down there
on the border right now, that and you know, and yeah,

(39:08):
likes this is the thing you're talking about. It's like,
I remember all these people in the streets for this.
I was like, I was there, I was fucking helping
to organize this stuff. And then like you watch them
walk away. Yeah, it's terrible.

Speaker 3 (39:23):
And I want to make clearer that you know, you're
talking about kind of the pressure that a party in
power can can apply and the way in which these
organizations can be captured, especially just due to how nonprofit
funding is a whole cluster fucking and how it works
here in the US. But I so, I actually by

(39:43):
a White House staffer called my executive director within an
hour of my boss forwarding the White House an analysis
of mine that I'd written for a state without reading
it herself at all. And in this analysis I included
a dismal assessment of the likelihood that the federal government

(40:04):
would use its power to prevent implementation that saw this
was a this was a healthcare band, that a novel
healthcare band that the estate wanted to quit turn around one
and so my boss direct boss forwarded it to the
White House, who had asked for analysis on it without
reading it at all. And within an hour of my
boss forwarding it to the White House, the White House
had called our executive director to complain about me and

(40:26):
I got written up for it. That is the fastest
turnaround on anything trans that anybody has gotten out of
this White House. And it was it was getting me,
me disciplined for in a in an analysis that was
not for them not being super impressed with their with
their trans policy. And I and I have heard I
have you know a lot of colleagues in the movement,

(40:47):
the folks I trust completely on trans policy. And I
know for a fact that I am not the only
person that has had a situation like that occur. And
so there they are applying pressure and even in the
most direct ways to you know, the advocacy organizations. So

(41:08):
it it, it is happening.

Speaker 2 (41:11):
Yeah, And I think the thing I wanted to close
on was talking about a bit about like the consequences
of this, because what happens when this this is you know,
this is part of going back to me talking about Bolivia,
Like this is part of how even Moralees got overthrown
in the coup, was that because the social movements, like
most of the like a lot of these social movements
have been sort of weakened to the point where they

(41:32):
know they no longer had you know, that they'd become
policy organs at the state and not actual like fighting
movements that could like effectively resist. You know that that
that could do a thing like for example, like you know,
if you look at the the the the original coup
against Hugo Chavez, right, like, the social movements were so
strong that even though the army literally did a coup,
they got fucking ran out by like several million uh

(41:54):
Venezuelans taking to the streets and just like overturning the coup,
right and that I I mean that happens later like
in like that there was you know, there there was
there was a second round of barricades that went up
that got basically no press attention in twenty twenty. You
know that there's a whole comp I'll talk about that
one day. And how hilariously after getting bailed out, even

(42:15):
Rallies pulled his people off the barricades because they didn't
actually want to overthrow the government. They just wanted an election. Obviously, well,
people off to keep the government intact long enough. He's
done this in many This is the second time he's
done this, by the way, this happened in the water
in the.

Speaker 4 (42:26):
Water Wars in twenty and six.

Speaker 2 (42:28):
But uh, you know, but but like in the initial
period of the coup, part of the reason this this
was able to happen again was because the capacity of
these groups to like overturn something like this had been
so new, or that they were able to sort of
be defeated in the streets. And you know, we are
we are watching our own version of this where, yeah,

(42:49):
like I wanted to sort of talk to you about
what's been happening the fucking hell escape that's been happening
in Louisiana, as you know, partially because of the sort
of republican's fascist turn, but also because the resistance to
them has been neutered by the fact that they're you know,
they have to like defend this Biden policy shit.

Speaker 3 (43:08):
Right, And yeah, so one important point to make about
the federal the need for federal protections is that you know,
I live in Louisiana, federal protections are all I'm ever
going to have, right, And so if the federal protections
aren't there, and if there's not a federal government willing
to enforce them, I'm I'm in big trouble. Like I

(43:28):
would bet every single dollar I have, which is not many,
that my medicaid will not will not cover my hormones
by the end of the year. Right, And so what
I what I think And I've highlighted kind of before
when it was very clear that Jeff Landry was going
to become governor after John Bell and actually did drug
policy for John Bell for a while, and a lot
of trans people were kind of quietly in his administration.

(43:50):
I think that my friend Tucker, aside from Rachel Levine,
was probably the highest ranked state executive branch transperson in
history as deputy Press secretary for a while. Well yeah,
I'm not sure, but yeah, trans people busted asks to
get John Bell elected. And so we had held off
a lot of this stuff for a long time, not

(44:10):
just through having a nominally democratic governor, but through the
organizing in the South that that happens on no resources
whatsoever is some of the most broad based and inspiring
kind of coalitional organizing that I've ever seen, and I've

(44:31):
done work all around the country, and the way that
people are able to organize kind of cross issue here
is phenomenal. But we are all Jerry manderd to shit.
We get no money, attention resources from national groups off
in the media, and especially here in Louisiana and in

(44:55):
much of the South, like we are not an attractive
place for impact litigation because in the Fifth Circuit and
all our state courts are shit, and so we really
kind of are on our own here in a all
of a sudden Republican super majority legislature with an activist
fascist governor and ag so Jeff Jeff Blandery is very

(45:16):
much in the model of the disantis or an abbot
in terms of what he is hoping to do in
Louisiana and what he's hoping to get out of it
in terms of his own personal profile and ambitions. And
there's so much we could talk about in terms of
what's going on here, but I want to highlight specifically
s B two seventy six, which is the bill you
may have seen headlines about. It's the bill that adds

(45:37):
Mith pristone and muspristalled to the State Schedule for Controlled
Substances Act.

Speaker 2 (45:43):
And can you can you explain what that what that
actually means for people who.

Speaker 3 (45:47):
Do Yeah, so MYTH and MISO are used for a
lot of a lot of healthcare in terms of, for example,
miscarriage management inducing labor in a hospital, but they can
also be used for self managed medication abortion. And so
this has not been done anywhere else in the in
the country where the leading the charge here, No other

(46:09):
state has ever added drugs like this to their controlled
substances long and and so what that means is that
those drugs are now going to be going through the
Prescription Monitoring Program the PMP, which has a lot more
controls and surveillance than non controlled substances. Right, So the

(46:30):
Board of Medicine, the Board Pharmacy, and I'm trying, I'm
trying to do a survey now to figure out which
state agency specifically have like automatic inherent access to that
PMP database. But it makes it a lot more traceable
and trackable, which is which is really scary for anybody
trying to access reproductive and abortion healthcare in a place

(46:50):
like Louisiana. And then the other thing it does is
it raises the stakes phenomenally for the people doing the
kind of and I'm going to speak, I'm going to
try to speak very carefully, or the people doing the
kind of direct practical support work to work with underserved
populations to make sure that they can access healthcare services

(47:13):
that they need. Right, And it is just a it
is a fact of life that you know, just like
in the harm direction movement, there are a lot of
people on the ground busting ass to get people what
they need. And you know, for a lot of times
for abortion funds, that's organizing money and transportation and hotels
to get people out of state. Right since the Florida

(47:34):
abortion van, we can't send people there anymore. We have
to send people to Illinois, which is more expensive and
further way. And it's those people who are at risk,
the people doing the work like the backbone of the
on the ground grassroots practical support mutual aid work, that
are risking. I think it's you know, five to ten

(47:57):
years per pill if they are you know, providing them
to someone else. It's it's terrifying, and there's no we
don't know what we're going to do about it. Yeah,
I'm gonna call last night kind of like, what are
we going to do about this? We don't know because
it's it's scary, and then jumping back to kind of
the problem with how not problem nonprofit and advocacy funding

(48:19):
works in this country, there are a lot of restrictions
that come that are you know, that organizations who are
funded that way have to live with, Like especially I'll
speak to the harm reduction world. For example, you'll get
a grant at your syringe exchange and they're like, here's
ten thousand dollars, but you can't spend any of it
on needles, and you're like, that's my biggest expense, That's
what I was going to you know, And so it's

(48:42):
the same kind of thing. The more that this kind
of work gets criminalized and pushed to the edge, the
fewer resourced organizations are able to work on it, have
the money that we're going it, but be just there
legal teams. The chilling effects of this stuff are massive,
and so it just falls more and more on the
backs of kind of the grassroots folks who have always

(49:05):
been making this happen for community to the extent that
they can under the harshest of circumstances, and you know,
it's people like that are who are going to have
to make some really tough decisions going forward.

Speaker 2 (49:18):
Yeah, and you know, like the.

Speaker 4 (49:23):
It's never.

Speaker 2 (49:25):
There's never been a good or safe time to do
stuff like this. But you know, as it gets increasingly dangerous,
and as you know, you get the sort of downstream
effects of both the sort of legal like but both
the sort of legal danger and the sort of like
constricting of movement space by the sort of question of

(49:47):
these engios, things just get more and more dangerous in
a time where the people who need to be dangerous
is us because otherwise we are going to die.

Speaker 3 (49:56):
Yeah, scary time, but yeah, you know, we keep us
fucking safe and yeah, always have and always will. And
it's going to be rough what we're heading into. But
you know, I again, the organizing in the South is
I've never seen anything that's made me so proud to

(50:19):
be an organizer and an activist as the work that
I see in the South. And so if there's anybody
who can lead the way on how to respond to
these things and how to take care of each other,
you know, it's it's our people. It's these people who've
been doing it forever.

Speaker 2 (50:34):
So yeah, and I think on that note, if people
want to find you and the people you've been working
with in the orgs that you're sort of working with,
now where where where can they find that on the
Internet or I guess other places too. Are there other
things that are not the Internet at.

Speaker 3 (50:50):
This point, I'm not, I really don't. Yeah, so you
can find me on Twitter. I'm Gay Narcan on Twitter.
That's that's me. And then if you are interested in
supporting kind of the work that my collective is doing,
the probably best place to go for that right now
is our first launched project called trans Income Project. It's

(51:12):
trans Income Project dot org. And what that is is
an organization that is solely dedicated to doing direct cash
transfers to transsex workers in Louisiana. We just had some
of our first listening sessions with folks and yeah, this
is gonna be so kick ass.

Speaker 4 (51:30):
So yeah, go go.

Speaker 3 (51:31):
There for that direct project. And then I would also
encourage folks to take a look at Louisiana Transadvocates. I
used to be president there. It's the state Transavacy organization.
We're actually the state in the South that has had
the longest consistent trans presence at the Capitol through Louisiana Transadvocates,
and we have no fucking money, so feel free to

(51:51):
so maybe toss something over there too if.

Speaker 1 (51:53):
You get tired.

Speaker 2 (51:55):
Yeah, I will say this, given how fucking zero dollars
every time transperson has, like this is what are the
places where your individual dollar will go the furthest because
you're like, you're your ten dollars is like a three
hundred percent increase I like the total funding of these works.
All right, Well, thank you so much for coming on
and talking.

Speaker 3 (52:15):
About this, and thanks so much for having me.

Speaker 2 (52:18):
Yeah, and I guess my final final final message to
listeners go fuck him up. You can do you could
do it too.

Speaker 3 (52:26):
Yeah, that I agree completely. Coastline.

Speaker 11 (52:34):
Hi everyone, it's me James, and I just wanted to
read you this today. I'm going to put it in
our episode this week because it's a cause, it's important
to us, and so we thought it would be something
that might be important to you too as well. On
the tenth of June twenty twenty four, Leonard Peltier, the
name rolled member of the Turtle Band of Chippewa of
Lakota and Ojibwei Ancestry and the longest serving political prisoner

(52:55):
in the United States will be appearing before the US
Parole Commission for the first time since two thousand, thousand
and nine. He faces staunch opposition from the FBI and
other law enforcement agencies due to having allegedly killed two
FBI agents in a firefight on the twenty sixth of
June nineteen seventy five, after the agents appeared on reservation
land to execute a pretextural warrant. The initial firefight occurred

(53:19):
during the quote reign of terror on Pine Ridge in
the wake of the occupation of Wounded Knee, a time
of extreme violence when federal law enforcement installed a puppet
tribal chair and was arming vigilantes who targeted Indigenous traditionalists
every since leading up to these events, as well as
subsequent investigation and mister Peltier's tradition, trial, conviction, and sentencing

(53:41):
were characterized by gross misconduct on a part of law enforcement,
the prosecution, and the courts. Mister Peltier's co defendants were
separately tried and acquitted on grounds of self defense. Mister
Peltier was railroaded, and his case is tainted by discrimination
at every level, ranging from the withholding of exculpatory evidence,
to the torture and coercion of extradition and trial witnesses,

(54:03):
and from the refusal of the judge to dismiss and
vowedly racist Dura, to the apologetic gymnastics of the courts
affirming his convictions in the face of meritorious legal challenges
and admitted evidence about rageous government misdeeds. Mister Peltier has
been in prison for more than forty eight years and
he's almost eighty years old. He suffers from chronic and

(54:24):
potentially lethal conditions for which he receives insufficient and substandard
medical care. If you want to take action to hashtag
free Leonard Peltier, you can call the US Parole Commission
at two zero two three four six seven zero zero zero,
And if you'd like to find more information on how
to support, you can.

Speaker 4 (54:45):
Go to this url.

Speaker 11 (54:46):
It's http colon slash slash n d NC dot c
c slash free Leonard Peltier. That's free l e O
N A R D P E l t I E R.
Or you can follow n d N Collective on social

(55:08):
media for more ways to support him. More information on
Leonard Peltier, listen to Margaret's podcast on the Lakota Nation.
A read in the Spirit of the Crazy Horse by
Peter Mathewson. Hi, everyone, welcome to It could happen here

(55:33):
podcasts about things falling apart and people putting them back together.
Today we're talking about a little of both of those things.
I'm joined by Rose, who's a migration activist in the Netherlands,
and Mick, who has studied migration. We're going to talk
about the EU's border today, and we're going to talk
about I think a lot of people, especially the bulk

(55:54):
of our listeners in the United States, won't be aware
perhaps of how incredibly cruel and fatal the EU's border is,
what it does to people, how it does it, where
it does it. So we're going to talk about that today.
It's very exciting. There's even more wall than we have
in the United States, so I'm looking forward to that.
And so HI, Welcome to the show. Both of you.

Speaker 5 (56:13):
Hi, Thanks, Hi, Thanks for having us.

Speaker 11 (56:16):
Thanks for being here. The way we wanted to structure
this was Mick has like an excellent presentation for We're
going to structure this over two episodes. First, we want
to talk about the state of things and then we
want to talk about activism and ways that people can
meaningfully make a difference in this situation. So, Mick, yeah,

(56:37):
if you'd like to take it away with you with
your script here, Rose and I will interject whenever we
feel like it.

Speaker 5 (56:44):
Okay, fair enough, let's go.

Speaker 7 (56:47):
So.

Speaker 5 (56:47):
The EU border crisis is largely crisis of the Mediterranean
to see that separates Europe from Africa, and it is
arguably one of the most deadly borders in the world,
if not the most deadly border. According to several activists
organizations such as the United Against Refugee Devs and Abolish Frontex,

(57:10):
which is the EU border agency in charge of protecting
the border, over fifty two thousand people have died at
this border as of June twenty twenty three. This number
is almost certainly higher to a number of factors, one
of which is that a significant amount of bodies are
never recovered, which makes it very hard to verify whether

(57:32):
or not someone has died or is lost somewhere in
the migration routs. Migration patterns are very hard to keep
track of. People travel hundreds of kilometers to simply get
to a point where they can get access to boats,
or other means of being transported across the sea. Yeah,
I have a picture here that I would like to

(57:53):
share with you. Listeners can find it in the notes
and sources.

Speaker 11 (57:57):
Maybe we'll try and describe it, just so you know,
to ones driving or something they can I guess, yeah,
go ahead, give give me a best shot.

Speaker 5 (58:05):
Okay. It's a map of continental Europe with adjacent to
it Africa and Eurasia. And it's a bunch of arrows
coalescing on to certain points that grow bigger and bigger.
And these represent the migration routes and the number of
people that take a particular path. As you can see,

(58:26):
the thicker line, the thicker the line, the more people
it represents. The thinner lines come from the Middle East
and further to the east. In terms of obstacles and danger,
I think it's safe to say that crossing Iraq or
Sybia is not without risk.

Speaker 11 (58:41):
Yeah. Yeah, I've done that. It's yeah, and I've done
it in cause and with permission, and it's already pretty
high risk. It's interesting this map is it is a
twenty seventeen map. Am I seeing that right?

Speaker 5 (58:54):
Yes, it's from the Frontex's quarterly reports too. Which covers
April till June twenty seventeen.

Speaker 11 (59:01):
Yeah, so maybe this is after the peak of people
leaving that Iraq and Syria area they like the yeah,
after Mayhem, Yes, yeah, exactly. Not not that there are
not still significant numbers. I mean I speak to people
in Syria most weeks who are trying to leave Syria.

(59:22):
It's become harder and harder due in part to the
EU making its borders harder and harder and more and
more deadly to cross, and due to a number of
other reasons. But yeah, I think those those lines would
have been fatter if we'd gone back, like, you know,
three or four years. Yeah, I mean people in Europe
will probably have been familiar with this. I mean, of course,

(59:42):
says the When was the photo taken of the the
young child who passed away cross That was Alida?

Speaker 7 (59:50):
I think that was in the summer of.

Speaker 5 (59:53):
Bottom Yeah, Alan Curdi, Yeah, the bois name was Allen Curdie.
I think a brother of his ground as well.

Speaker 11 (01:00:04):
Yeah, people can look that up if they want to.
I'll try not to include it. It's quite a horrible
thing to have to witness.

Speaker 5 (01:00:12):
No, it's not a nice photo to see ironically, it
was one of the few moments where like European people
could muster some sympathy for refugees. But yeah, that wins
at some point. Yeah, it's always the case.

Speaker 11 (01:00:27):
Like I don't know, I am talking about this before
speak about again, but like the other day, I was
out dropping water and we came across a little three
year old girl and her mother from Guinea, and they
the young girl was very hypothermic. Like at first we
didn't notice because we're like, oh, this girl is very quiet,
and then we're like, go, okay, this girl is very
very quiet, and perhaps, you know, we should be concerned,

(01:00:48):
and like, I don't know how, and no one in
their right mind would be like, yeah, this is normal
and good and I'm really glad that this child is
in a place where, you know, if left for several
more hours, she might die. And everyone in that situation,
to include people who were just driving by, were like,
oh fuck, we need to help. But sadly, when we

(01:01:09):
abstract it to numbers, which is the way it's always
reported on, right, it's not stories, it's not people, it's
not little children, it's fifty something thousand people. You know,
it's hard to imagine fifty something thousand people dying. It's
easier to feel something for one little boy.

Speaker 7 (01:01:24):
Yeah, And it's easier to feel something for a child
than for a man. It's easier to feel something for
a woman than men. And also even the death of
Alanchourti despite all the yeah, outraged provoked. It was also
used as a to make the Turkey Deal, which was
intended to stop people crossing by boat from Turkey to Greece,

(01:01:44):
even though that was actually one of the safest migration
routs we had at the time, and it closed up
and people started to move to Libya and instead of
three kilometers of sea, that meant people had to cross
one hundred or more kilometers of sea, which was obviously
way more.

Speaker 11 (01:02:00):
Yeah, and just so do you need to Libya? And
that time in Libya's where we'll find out later, is
far from risk free.

Speaker 7 (01:02:09):
Yeah. Libya is a very different place than Turkey.

Speaker 5 (01:02:12):
Absolutely, Yeah, significantly worse to be than Turkey. So to
get back on track, as you can also see from
the picture of a vast majority of those migration routes
across the Sahara desert, people who die in the desert
or through other dangers on their journey do not make

(01:02:32):
it to the Mediterranean and therefore tend to not end
up in the statistics of people dying there. But I
would still argue that it is undeniable that those people
in fact died due to the migration policies that the
EU puts in place and enforces. Definitely, it's just outside
of our purview.

Speaker 7 (01:02:53):
The United list again of refugee deaths, it's taking into
account anyone whose death can be attributed to the borders.
So they do also include people dying in the desert,
but there is much less news about it, So the
figures of frontecs and of IOM usually do not include those.
But the number you just mentioned that with fifty two thousand,

(01:03:13):
it also includes people who meet at suicide and detention
centers or who died of medical neglecting camps. But it
also includes people who died further from the European border,
but still on borders are that are controlled or are
influenced by European policies.

Speaker 11 (01:03:30):
Yeah, in the US like to give a sort of
comparison example that the statistics we have that come from
border patrol, those are the remains that are found, which
is a subset of the remains that exist in it,
and it doesn't take into account people who died crossing
Mexico Cree, people who died as Farsus as a Darian
gap right, which is very dangerous and it's becoming more

(01:03:53):
so as more traffic goes across it. People who died
taking boats around the Darien Gap right, or for whatever reason,
didn't make it. So we too have this kind of
attempt to I guess when we get government statistics, we
have to remember that they come from a government perspective
and they will try and minimize the obvious cruelty that's happening.

Speaker 5 (01:04:12):
I think that's a characteristic of almost every government that
keep the numbers low and don't really engage with the
actual problems that are at hand. So before we go
into more specific territories, there are a few things that
should be made clear. The EU does not follow their
own rules about migration. Hopefully at the end of this

(01:04:34):
the listeners will also accept that the humanitarian and migration
crises is much more a product of border policies rather
than the policies being a consequence of migration. To first
illustrate this, here is a quote from Government l the
English version of the Dutch government websites asylum or a turn.

(01:04:56):
All refugees entering the EU may apply for asylum. They
must do this in the country where they enter the EU.
Asylum seekers who do not require protection must return to
their country of origin or to a save a third country.
The EU respects the human rights of refugees, both when
dealing with their applications and with regard to return. So

(01:05:19):
I want you all to keep this in mind when
we continue, because this phrasing ignores other policies that make
it much harder for migrants and refugees to even enter
the EU or to be able to apply for asylum. So,
and before we dive deeper into the atrocities that the
EU enables, I think it's important to first briefly explain

(01:05:42):
how the border system works and the history behind it.
Europe is no stranger to migration and migrants, and it
is something that has been happening in waves over the
past three to four decades. In the early nineties, there
were multiple waves of migrants from Albania to other European countries.
The main cause of this was the isolationist policies that

(01:06:04):
were enforced by the communist regime that was in charge there,
the unrest that followed at the end of the regime,
and the crisis of Kosovo. For those unaware, Kosovo had
a war with Serbia for independence and Kosovari people are
largely ethnic Albanians with the same language, and because of this,

(01:06:24):
it was easier for Albanians to merge with the Kosovari
refugees and use that to migrate further and easier into Europe.
Other waves are caused by other geopolitical events, such as
the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia, which I think Mia and
Roberts covered in their episode on self immolation. Yeah, okay,

(01:06:47):
and much more down to everyone, the wars in Syria
and Libya.

Speaker 11 (01:06:52):
My interest in the border has always run parallel to
my interesting conflict in reporting on conflict, and like it's
just become such a recurrent experience to either learn about
conflicts at the border here because someone is telling me
about them, or learn about often like repression of ethnic

(01:07:13):
or national or religious minorities because someone here tells me
about them, or to go somewhere, you know, I was
in Syria in October, was in Iraq and then return
and see people from there at our border, and like
as people will be aware the asylum system and it
will cover it later. The asylum system allows people who

(01:07:35):
are very in danger of persecution for various categories to
apply for asylum. It's not functioning. It's not functioning in
the EU, it's not functioning in the US. Like I've
seen that persecution with my own eyes and the consequences
of it, and I've seen people try and get away
from it. Every single time I'm in somewhere like that,
people will ask me for help, and it is fucking

(01:07:57):
heartbreaking to be like, yeah, the country that you see
flying the F sixteens or the F thirty fives over
your head, the planes that cost more than this entire
town makes in a year. No, we can't have a functioning,
fucking immigration system. Like in the case of the US,
it's this app which doesn't work and you can only
use it north of Mexico City, and it's this broken

(01:08:19):
system leads to people they're not like getting in a
boat across the Mediterranean, crossing the Daryan Gap, walking across
the mountains of northern Mexico because they want to have
like a better iPhone. They're doing it because whatever the
alternative is seems worse, and it's worth. People are fully
aware that they're risking their lives on these journeys. It's

(01:08:41):
you know, it's not that they live without access to
news and the internet. They know about the death in
the Mediterranean, they know about the Daryant Gap when I
talk to migrants who haven't crossed the gap, like I
was talking to group of Columbian migrants two or three
days ago, and they were coming in to the US
through It's in an area east of hookumber which is

(01:09:02):
very rugged and very mountainous, and they were coming into
an open air attention site where border patrol holds them.
And I was talking to them, I say, how many
if you walked, how many if you flew. Most of
them flew and then were able to work forward. The
ones who walked. Everyone was like, oh shit, that's horrible,
Like you must have seen terrible things. Like they're very

(01:09:23):
aware of how dangerous it's journeys are. The reason that
they're taking them is because it seems like staying at
home would be more dangerous.

Speaker 7 (01:09:30):
Yeah, although I would like to add that it's not
every migrant is a real refugee, and not every migrant
has to be a real refugee. Yes, at least as
the definition was established in the fifties by a bunch
of pretentious guys who kind of decided this is a
good reason to migrate and all other reasons are not.

(01:09:50):
At first, yeah, at first I worked in Greece and
that was mainly with people of like what are considered
like objectively real or good refugees, people from Afghanistan and
Iraq and Syria, whereas when I was working in Bosnia
it was mainly people from Morocco, Algeria and Pakistan. And
a lack of opportunity can be a very good reason

(01:10:12):
to move. I think most white people who moved to
America did so because of that.

Speaker 8 (01:10:18):
Not because they were imminently bombed in their home countries,
but because they wanted to make something out of their
lives and they didn't have opportunities at home. And I
think this whole concept of refugee is meant to distinguish
between good and bad reasons to move, and good and
bad people migrants.

Speaker 12 (01:10:39):
In the end, people can do really dangerous things for
giving their children a better life and if their children
are not immediate danger, and the other thing I would
like to stress is that I think the migration regime
that we see today is very tightly connected to colonization
and decolonization. For example, specifically in the Midlands, Surnam was

(01:11:01):
a Dutch colony, and one of the reasons why the
Dutch government agreed with decolonization was because the Dutch society
started to get worried about all the black people showing up.
So and the same something similar happened with the independence
word that.

Speaker 13 (01:11:16):
Algeria fought against France. France preferred to give them independence
rather than give them equal rights and access to the
French territory. So lifting like creating those barriers and keeping
people in the Global South after these.

Speaker 7 (01:11:32):
Countries became independent is very tightly connected with decolonization. But
of course, especially with new colonization and new ways of
controlling people in the Global South and exploiting them.

Speaker 11 (01:11:44):
Yeah, if we look at like the US context, the
United States government has managed to engineer this sort of
compromise where capital travels freely across the Americas and people don't,
so it's possible for them to exploit lower wage labor.
For US companies to exploit low wage labor Mexico and
other countries to the South, but not for those people
to come and seek a better way to better way

(01:12:05):
of living in the country that is consuming the products
of their labor and so like, this is obviously not
new to people, right, this is a thing that's Appatista
highlighted in nineteen ninety four and it's been the case
for thirty years. But yeah, we have in the US
because the United States colonialism like kind of a in
a somewhat less overt way, although often in a pretty

(01:12:27):
overt way. It's facilitated undemocratic regimes and a low quality
of life for people all across specifically the Americas, but
also the rest of the world, and it's now seeking
to prevent those people from coming here after it destabilized
to their countries, right or in the case of climate change, again,
like the consumption habits of certain countries have had an

(01:12:49):
impact on people all around the world, to include people
in more diaeconomic circumstances. And it shouldn't be any less.
We shouldn't have any less empathy or solidarity with those
people because no one's bombing them and they just want
a chance to their kids to do the same shit.
Like I moved to America and I was twenty one,
because they want many jobs for me at home.

Speaker 7 (01:13:10):
Like there's something very arrogant about thinking that you can
decide whether someone else has a right to exist totally,
And I think that's kind of what migration policies are.

Speaker 11 (01:13:21):
Yeah, and as you pointed out, they were established after
the after the Second World War with a very narrow
set of categories. Don't include not only do not include
climate change, but also like generalized violence, right, the generalized veru.

Speaker 7 (01:13:33):
Yeah, Actually fleeing from a war is not is not
making you a real refugee according to international law.

Speaker 4 (01:13:39):
Yeah, yeah, which is something people don't know.

Speaker 7 (01:13:41):
So like an average sharing refugee is actually legally not a.

Speaker 11 (01:13:44):
Refugee, right. Yeah, they are flying in.

Speaker 7 (01:13:47):
Discriminate violence, but not like they don't have like political
they don't have a right to political asylum.

Speaker 11 (01:13:52):
Yeah, Or people in Ecuador will will talk to talk
to people from Ecuador a lot, you know, and they'll
be like, well, you've seen men they took over the
TA TV station, So there's some gangs to go over
a TV station there recently, and it's kind of an
armed takeover. And then like, as you can see, would
you want your child growing up there, you know, if
you had children, and of course it's a very compelling argument,
and if I was in their position with young children.

(01:14:15):
Want guy I met the other day his son needed
medical care that he couldn't obtain in his country. You know,
like that's a perfectly valid reason for coming here. But
none of those things count for asylum. So those people
are i'd a lumped into quote unquote economic migrants, which
is still you know, like people have a right to
a living wage and to be able to pay for

(01:14:36):
their family, to have the things that they need to
survive and thrive. But you're right, the asylum system is
very narrow.

Speaker 5 (01:14:42):
Yeah, and we should also not forget that, even if
we're excluding war, you can't really separate migration from the
things the West has done in those other countries to
maintain that neo colonial relationship, and you know, those keep
those people dependent on whatever whims there are in the West,

(01:15:06):
and whether that's for resources, whether that's for because there
were like the communist regimes there that we weren't happy with. Like,
you can't separate that. You can separate the conditions that
are happening there right now to things that have been
decided in the West years prior.

Speaker 11 (01:15:27):
Yeah, very true. All right, we're back. Have you enjoyed
those adverts for products and services following our discussion on
how capitalism has made life unliverable in certain parts of

(01:15:47):
the world, So Mick kil let's pick up with you
explaining this to see border to.

Speaker 5 (01:15:51):
Us Well, I found a very nice scholarly article that
breaks down how the EU borders work and makes a
very clear distinction between the different layers that protect fortress Europe.
These layers will be called the paper border, which largely
consists of visa policies and similar bureaucracy that regulates movement

(01:16:14):
to the EU and within it. Then we have the
iron border, which is exactly what you imagine it. To me,
it's the physical structures and forms of control that we
put up to keep people out. And then we have
the post border, and that's about the reception of migrants,
migrant shelters and similar constructions that keep migrants and refugees

(01:16:39):
ostracized and isolated even after being allowed access into the
EU and having started a asylum process. For those stories,
we should turn to Rows when we get there, because
she is much more on the ground experience than I
have with this, so we'll start with the paper border.
During the mid eighties, the e WHO started to propose

(01:17:01):
and enact a series of treaties and policies that in
effect strengthened the external borders and loosened the borders within Europe.
I think no one is particularly interested in this series
of treaties, so I will name the only one is
the Shangan Treaty. This treaty essentially unites the external borders

(01:17:24):
under EU command rather than as a task for individual states.
In practice, this also means that EU citizens who have
a proper documentation can move freely between countries. Are who
have signed the Shangan Treaty for holidays or work os,
You and I we could move to Germany tomorrow if

(01:17:45):
we wanted to, and I have little to know obstacles
in terms.

Speaker 7 (01:17:49):
Of documentary Economically independent though, like that is very crucial
about EO. Your fraend of movement is conditional.

Speaker 11 (01:17:57):
On you making money, yeah, having enough money to support yourself,
but you can move like This is very funny because
it pissed off British people who are living in Spain
right when they when Britain brexited, because they hadn't realized
that they would impact them. They you know, like such
as a god thought it was.

Speaker 7 (01:18:14):
Only the Polish that we yeah, like the undesirable migrants.
But yes, yes, assumed themselves to be desirable.

Speaker 11 (01:18:21):
Yeah, well yeah, I don't think we use the word
expat right like Britain would use the word expact to
describe a migrant from Britain to Spain, like it's yeah,
it's really culou. I mean I've lived in France, in Spain,
of fifd in Belgium and I was, I guess, somewhat
economically independent, made twelve thousand years a year as a
bike racer, but that was you know, I could do that.

(01:18:42):
It was very easy for me.

Speaker 5 (01:18:44):
But it is.

Speaker 7 (01:18:45):
I do think it's important because I think it's one
of those post border things that what we see for
some point analysis that most homeless people here are not
the undocumented migrants, they are not the refugees or Dutch people,
but they're EU migrants. So people have low paying jobs,
break their legs, get kicked out of their houses and

(01:19:05):
their jobs, and are not welcoming the homeless shelters because
in Endlands says well, you are not economically independent therefore,
so this is also part of the migration regime, and
this is also part of keeping migrants exploitable. Even if
you use citizens have the right to work, they don't.
They're only allowed to work. We only want them if
they bring in economic profits. We don't want them when

(01:19:28):
they're sick or.

Speaker 2 (01:19:29):
In need or whatever.

Speaker 5 (01:19:30):
Yeah, and then mostly we want them for jobs that
we feel too good to actually do. When I was younger,
I used to work in a greenhouse, and there's an
immense amount of people from like Poland or other Eastern
European countries coming there because Dutch people tend not to
want to work in a greenhouse. It's one of those things.

Speaker 11 (01:19:54):
It's an extension of that like a colonial perspective. Right,
these are jobs for.

Speaker 5 (01:20:00):
Us exactly because you get your hands dirty and we
can't have that here. To put the whole thing about
the paper border into less academic term, the EU started
to act like a nation state and started to make
sharp distinctions between native and non native European citizens. I

(01:20:21):
think it's worth pointing out that what counts as EU
is also a supposed European identity. It's very closely tied
to geographical location and therefore also implicitly linked to Christianity.
Countries that are largely non Christian but connected to Europe
tend to be excluded. Turkey is partially in Europe but

(01:20:45):
not part of the EU, and Bosnia Herzegovina, which is
a majority Muslim country, is also excluded from that. But
much like Turkey is being tempted with the whole you
can join if you do this and that, but we're
not really committing to that. That, however, is a story

(01:21:06):
for another time. Maybe the point that I want to
make here is that the visa program for Europe is
based on geographical discrimination. Countries outside the geography of Europe
are blacklisted and cannot gain access to the papers that
they need to legally enter the EU. This bureaucracy prohibits
people from entering the EU before fences or border guards

(01:21:30):
have even entered the equation, hence the paper border, since
entering or crossing without a paper visa is nah impossible.

Speaker 7 (01:21:39):
Yeah, I would like to add, of course, like it
is geographical discrimination, but of course indirectly it is discrimination
based on class and race. So it is yea color
but not the super rich people of color. And it
is yeah, it is. It is formerly colonized countries that
are largely that even have an obligation to get so

(01:22:00):
people from the US can travel visa free, same for
people from Australia. So this is like, it is very ironic.
I find that it's in Europe it's considered legal to
discriminate based on nationality, even though it is very clearly
a very smart way to discriminate actually people based on

(01:22:20):
the color of their skin and their economic status.

Speaker 5 (01:22:24):
Exactly what you said, Rose Like all the countries that
are backlisted are like from the the global South, so
to speak, almost all of them. But I talked to
about this with a professor of mine a while back,
and I think if you can put down like thirty
thousand euros, then you can get a visa even if

(01:22:44):
you're from those countries.

Speaker 7 (01:22:46):
Exactly. So the super rich, actually, the super rich have
freedom of movements. Yeah, but the it is always the
poor migrants whose movement is problematic.

Speaker 11 (01:22:56):
And whose movement is Yeah. It Britain and in the
US there's a lot of discourse about like open borders.
I've noticed like, oh, the borders open, right, Like the
border has always been open to people like me. I
live in the United States, right, I am a US citizen.
Now I'm also a British citizen. I've lived and worked
in Spain. I've lived and worked in France. I've lived

(01:23:17):
and worked in Belgium. I can go and I can
get a visa to Iraq. I can get a visa
to anywhere I want. The borders have always been open
to white people who have financial means. What they're saying
when they're saying open borders is implicitly borders open to
people who are not white, not wealthy, perhaps not Christian.
And what one can infer from that is a great

(01:23:40):
deal of bigotry and a great deal of like unease
about living, you know, alongside people who you feel like
are not like the same quote unquote as you, which
is particularly runic in the United States, right in a
country which is a self a settler colony.

Speaker 5 (01:23:55):
Yeah, it's all very very uplifting stuff. I do want
to end this particular bit with the quote from that
article because I think it says it much more fancy
than I ever could. Rather than guards with guns, this
first border, if the EU is watched over by bureaucrats
armed with paper and entrenched in faraway embassies, through this

(01:24:19):
political technology, all citizens of a large group of nations
bar to view are blacklisted. This means, in practice that
most of the citizens of these blacklisted countries cannot acquire
the visas they required to legally travel to the EU.
The implication is that the paper border of the EU

(01:24:39):
remotely and invisibly cages people in the inequitable or tree
of birth end quote. I think it's very much worth
highlighting that if you're as we've established, unless you're like
wealthy or white, you cannot legally enter the EU. And

(01:25:00):
even though our politicians keep saying no, no, we're just
against the illegals, now, there is for a lot of people,
there simply is no way to enter legally. It's impossible,
And it's a large part of the conversation that we
conveniently ignore because it doesn't fit like the political narratives
that people want to spread.

Speaker 11 (01:25:21):
Yeah, and of course, most retched deconventions allow for people
to enter between ports of entry in whichever way they
can to claim asylum, Like one does not have to
enter in a certain way to claim asylum, despite what
the discourse might suggest.

Speaker 7 (01:25:36):
Yeah, and I think this border is like probably the
most overlooked because it doesn't create any dramatic pictures, right,
it is indeed, it's just people sitting in an office
and looking at papers and deciding no. But these are
like in Dutch. Yeah, these are people working at the
immigration office. And these are the people who then decide
that's the only option for people is to go on

(01:25:59):
a boat. So these these are policies and the people
who are executing them are super crucial in enforcing people
onto dangerous.

Speaker 5 (01:26:09):
Routes exactly because there is no way to do it legally. Therefore,
I have to set food on that soil and then
you know, apply for asylum because the other route is
like before I even tried, already closed off.

Speaker 7 (01:26:25):
Yeah, and I really like that term, the inequitable a birth.
We call it like support heads. Yeah, but it's one
of the most insane or like most fundamentally unjust things
that we see that we are living with and then
we don't see or like that many people don't see.

(01:26:47):
So just because we were born, like I was born
in one of the richest countries of in the world.
My parents had a Dutch fashboard. That's how I got
a Dutch fastboard. I did literally nothing to get that.
It is impossible for me to lose my Dutch passport.
I commit, I can commit like the worst crimes, and
they will not, you know, they will not lead me
to lose my passport. Whereas other people who are born

(01:27:10):
in countries where life expectancy is crazy low, or where
there's no healthcare or no proper education or jobs, they
too did absolutely nothing to be born there or to
be assigned to that nationality. And so somehow this border
and this passport is legitimizing the fact that some people
just die and we're fine with that, and other people

(01:27:33):
have insane privileges and opportunities, and the nationality is kind
of a justification because if you really think about it,
there is no reason why the minimum wage in Ethiopia
should be lower than in the Netlands, Like there really isn't.
The only reason is that they have a different nationality,
and somehow that makes it normal. And if it's just yeah,

(01:27:56):
it's just this injustice. Its structures that are so invisible
and that are not questioned or talked about enough. So
I'm glad we're talking about it today.

Speaker 11 (01:28:06):
But yeah, good. It's such a stark reality when you
live on the border, like I live on the US
Mexico border a like what on earth? Like, you know,
the justification for being like, oh, yeah, this person should
earn less money and they can't come here, but you
can go down there and buy stuff at the same
price they can. That's fine, Like it's totally fine. Yeah,

(01:28:26):
and we're going to build a giant fuck off wall.
And it's just such when I spent a lot of
time in the more remote parts of the US border,
and for most of the time that border country to
what you might have seen on the news is a
one meter high cattle fence with a single strand a
bar wire, and it's so obviously just a light like
very often cattle will cross the border and like that

(01:28:49):
will have to be herded back, right, like the it's
just a notional line in the sand. When they built
the border wall, it really fucked up the migration habits
of jaguar bears.

Speaker 4 (01:29:01):
Dea.

Speaker 11 (01:29:02):
I've seen animals unable to comprehend, Like, but no, that's
where I go and get my water, right, Like, it's
such an arbitrary distinction that it results in so much cruelty.

Speaker 7 (01:29:13):
But we do build walls better than you.

Speaker 11 (01:29:15):
Yeah, that's a good segue to the European iron boarder.

Speaker 7 (01:29:19):
One thing we are more cruel at than the Americans.

Speaker 5 (01:29:23):
Yeah, yeah, finally something we can beat the American sets.

Speaker 4 (01:29:26):
Yeah, I'm mad.

Speaker 11 (01:29:27):
We're working on it, believe me.

Speaker 5 (01:29:29):
Okay, well, not too hard. We want we want to
keep this trophy for a while.

Speaker 11 (01:29:34):
You know what else is competing to be the most
cruel Mick, No, it's it's it's potentially the products and
services support this show. All right, we're back. We hope

(01:29:56):
you enjoyed those products and services. Hopefully it wasn't for
like a border surveillance technology or you know, something similar walls.

Speaker 5 (01:30:04):
Okay, so the next part is the Iron Border. This
is very similar to what people already think of, but
somehow worse. The Iron border is a collection of fences, walls,
barbed and razor wire, or even fortified enclaves such as
Suta and Melilla in Spain. Sorry for butchering those names.

(01:30:25):
It is both a deterrent and a performance like. It's
meant to project security for people within the walls. It
shows that EU uses an iron fist to protect Europeans
from irregular or illegal immigrant migration. What is more important
to highlight, it also makes for very good outrage media

(01:30:47):
for right wing and fascist platforms. Refugees will continue to
breach those fences, and the photographs and videos of it
made for very good propaganda about how borders need to
be strengthed. The fence borders of Europe have increased from
three hundred kilometers in twenty fourteen to its shocking two

(01:31:08):
thousand and forty eight kilometers in twenty twenty two.

Speaker 11 (01:31:12):
Yeah, that's substantiary than the US we have. Of course,
it's America, so it's miles. But the most generous estimate
based on pre existing wall repairs Trump wall building is
seven hundred and forty eight miles. That was actually I
would say about seven hundred and fifty because I've seen
construction happening since then, so that's what like eleven hundred kilometers.

(01:31:36):
It's you know, we're just just over half of what
the EU has.

Speaker 7 (01:31:42):
And I think for me, like when I when I
was at the physical borders, like the border walls, I
mean it feels like a military zone, like I was
on the Hungarian border. There's drones, there is super heavily
weaponed soldiers walking around, like helicopters flying around. It's a
very intimidating feeling. But if you talk to the people

(01:32:04):
crossing the fence, the fence is kind of a joke,
like you can just bring Yeah, you can just go
to a gardening shop and buy a stairs or like
a ladder and just put it over the fence. You
can buy a super simple scissor that you would use
in the garden to cut your vegetables and you can
cut the fence open with it. People were building tunnels,
like of course it takes time to cross it, and

(01:32:27):
it's so in that sense, it's a hindrance. But the
entire promise that if a wall holl stop people is indeed,
it's just a political game, and the politicians know that
it's not true. It's just a way to show how
tough they are and how rough they are. And at
the same time, I think this is a good moment

(01:32:48):
to instate on Palestine to the discussion. So most of
the European borders are equipped with razor wire, and that
is literally like knives wire, you know, like it is
like it's razors.

Speaker 11 (01:33:04):
Its half razor blades.

Speaker 7 (01:33:07):
Yeah, and this is designed by the Israeli army and
weapons industry, and the aim of this razor wire is
to gut as deeply as possible into people's skin without
causing pain, so people don't realize how realize how heavily
wounded they are, in order to make them bleed as
much as possible. This has been tested in Gaza, and

(01:33:30):
Israeli army liked it, and now it's sold in Europe
to sometimes stop the same people leaving fleeing Gaza trying
to reach Europe. So the border in one hand is
kind of useless, but at the same time, it is
really built to be as cruel and as harmful as possible.
And I know a lot of people with a lot

(01:33:50):
of scars on their bodies just from those razor wires.

Speaker 11 (01:33:55):
Yeah, I think if we want to draw that connection further,
like Lbit Technologies has mass, multi tens of million dollar
contracts for border surveillance where I live. Right, the same
things that are surveiling people in Gaza are surveilling you
if you go for a hike in East County, San Diego,
they're also surveilling migrants.

Speaker 1 (01:34:12):
Right.

Speaker 11 (01:34:13):
The raser ware that you mentioned is everywhere out here. Right.
It doesn't work, it gets cut eventually, it gets blankets
thrown over it, But in the meantime, it hurts people
the wall itself, right, there's also walls between Itsrael and Palestine,
between Kurdistan and Turkey. What they, at least these larger

(01:34:35):
ones do is is they force people. The US Wall
is also one that's entirely breachable. I've seen people climbing it.
I've seen people climbing it this week. I've seen people
go under it, I've seen people go through it, I've
seen people go around it. But what it does tend
to do is force people into the more remote areas
where they didn't build wall, and those areas are where
you're more likely to die. And every year that we've

(01:34:57):
built more wall, we've seen more deaths. And as someone
who engages in mutual aid, every year that they build
more wall, we have to think about where will people go,
how will they get there, what state will they be in,
How can we make this journey less deadly, and that
becomes harder and higher for us. You know, we did
a water drop on Sunday. It took us five hours

(01:35:18):
to hike a very small section of this trail that
people hiked in order to surrender themselves, just as they
would if they could come through important entry, but it's
a lot more deadly.

Speaker 7 (01:35:27):
Yeah. I think that's kind of some sort of most
migration policies or migration like obstacles to migration in Europe
as well. They don't actually stop migrants, but they do
hurt them, and they do push them into danger or actual.

Speaker 5 (01:35:42):
Deadly Yeah, because you're never going to stop it, but
you can use like quote unquote deterrents in the holes
that it will all slow down, but you're just going
to get people hurt and killed.

Speaker 11 (01:35:57):
Yeah.

Speaker 7 (01:35:58):
Yeah, that is like how incredibly cinecle the border is.
I think that the main desurance is the people dying,
and that this is part of the political game to
disencourage vibrants.

Speaker 5 (01:36:14):
Yeah, and then you can and then you can use
other policies that we'll get to to present yourself as
the good guy for wanting to make sure that people
don't cross those walls or across the Mediterranean, and you
can present yourself as the good guy trying to prevent
those steps that your policies are causing.

Speaker 11 (01:36:35):
I think that's what we're going to end it for today.
We plan for this to be a one part episode,
but we really enjoyed talking and we had a learning comment,
so this is going to be a two parter. Tomorrow
we will be back to discuss the EU's external border
and how it has non EU countries enforcing its border
in ways that are very detrimental, damaging, and deadly to migrants.
So I hope you look forward to that and we'll
see you again tomorrow.

Speaker 7 (01:37:01):
Hi.

Speaker 11 (01:37:01):
Everyone, it's me James, and I just wanted to read
you this today. We're going to put it in our
episode this week because it's a cause that's important to us,
and so we thought it would be something that might
be important to you too as well. On the tenth
of June twenty twenty four, Lennard Peltier, an enrolled member
of the Turtle Band of Chippewa of Lakota and Ajibwei
ancestry and the longest serving political prisoner in the United States,

(01:37:22):
will be appearing before the US Parole Commission for the
first time since two thousand and nine. He faces staunch
opposition from the FBI and other law enforcement agencies due
to having allegedly killed two FBI agents in a firefight
on the twenty sixth of June nineteen seventy five. After
the agents appeared on reservation land to execute a pretextural warrant.

(01:37:44):
The initial firefight occurred during the quote reign of terror
on Pine Ridge in the wake of the occupation of
Wounded Kney, a time of extreme violence when federal law
enforcement installed a puppet tribal chair and was arming vigilantes
who targeted Indigenous traditionalists. Everything leading up to these events,
as well as subsequent investigation and mister Peltier's extradition, trial, conviction,

(01:38:06):
and sentencing, were characterized by gross misconduct on the part
of law enforcement, the prosecution, and the courts. Mister Peltier's
co defendants were separately tried and acquitted on grounds of
self defense. Mister Peltier was railroaded, and his case is
tainted by discrimination at every level, ranging from the withholding
of exculpatory evidence to the torture and coercion of extradition

(01:38:28):
and trial witnesses, and from the refusal of the judge
to dismiss and vowedly racist Dura to the apologetic gymnastics
of the courts affirming his convictions in the face of
meritorious legal challenges and admitted evidence of outrageous government misdeeds.
Mister Peltier has been in prison for more than forty
eight years and he's almost eighty years old. He suffers

(01:38:50):
from chronic and potentially lethal conditions for which he receives
insufficient and substandard medical care. If you want to take
action to hashtag free Lennard Heltier, you can call the
US Parole Commission at two zero two three four six
seven zero zero zero, And if you'd like to find
more information on how to support, you can go to

(01:39:12):
this u r L. It's h t T P colon
slash slash n D N C O dot c c
slash free Leonard Peltier. That's f R e E L
e O n A R d P e L t
I E R or you can follow n d N

(01:39:33):
collective on social media for more ways to support him.
More information on Leonard Peltier, listen to Margaret's podcast on
the Lakota Nation, a read in the Spirit of the
Crazy Horse by Peter Mathewson. Hi, we're back, and just

(01:40:00):
to remind people, if you haven't listened to the episode yesterday,
you probably won't pick up what's going on today, So
I suggest starting there as we commence on our second
part of the discussion about the EUS border. Today we're
going to discuss the EU's external border and what that
means for migrants. We'll pick up with Mick and Rose
and we'll start off more or less where we left

(01:40:21):
off yesterday. Like you can map, and I'm not the
first one to have made these maps, but you can
look at humane borders in Arizona, and then you can
look at EFF's map of fixed and mobile towers and
you can see people. And again, this is something I'm
more familiar with, and I'd like to be people dying
in the shade of the surveillance towers, without help, without water,

(01:40:42):
without the very minor things that it would take for
them not to have died. And so yeah, this provides justification.
It provides a massive outlet for the post War on
Terror like military industrial complex to continue to make its money,
and to continue to make its money through innocent people dying.

Speaker 5 (01:41:03):
Yeah, I think it was either a Polish Frontex or
the Transnational Institute. I got some hands on some literature
they were spreading, and there is a direct you can
draw a direct line between like the end of the
Cold War in the nineties, with military industrial complex having

(01:41:26):
to fight new ways to sell their products to states.
And that's also why the order keeps getting more and
more militarized, because this is the one point where they
can still sell a lot of things without their having
to be a war.

Speaker 4 (01:41:39):
Yeah.

Speaker 7 (01:41:40):
Yeah, there's like a very serious lobby of companies who
just want to make money out of making our borders deadly.
And they're really successful.

Speaker 11 (01:41:48):
Actually yeah. I think they just want to make money
and they don't care if they make up boarders deadly
like they the end goal is always profit for them,
right like, and everything else is consequent to that.

Speaker 5 (01:42:01):
Think of the stockholders, they have to live as well.
What I personally find most troubling is this extension of
the Iron border into non European countries. So the EU
is making deals with countries in which for the in
exchange for large sums of money that those countries are

(01:42:24):
now containing or stopping migrants and refugees from ever leaving
the Middle East Africa. Like Rose said earlier, the Turkey
deal is essentially a political deal between the EU and
Turkey for Turkey to hold a portion of Syrian refugees
over within their border to stop them from coming into Europe.

(01:42:45):
And I think we paid a few billion, more than
a few billion probably for Turkey to do that. So
the most prominent of these deals are, as i said, Turkey,
but also Tunisia and Libya. We're essentially outsourcing the abuse
and human rights violations to countries that are outside the

(01:43:07):
scope of our media, who have regimes that we would
declare dictatorships and autocracies. In the case of Libya, it's
even like rebels and warlords being funded with EU taxpayer money. Today,
the eupack with Libya has given rise to a full
fledged slave market run by cold blooded human traffickers who,
incentivized by the EU's crackdown on irregular migration and the

(01:43:31):
resulting business downturn of would be profitable passengers, are now
auctioning economic migrants and refugees as slaves. Yeah, we're just
doing slavery with extra steps now. So to make it
inescapably clear how bad the situation is, I'm now going
to quote from an Amnesty International article from twenty twenty one.

(01:43:52):
Three Police Shadra al Zawia Center is a facility facility
which was pretty obviously run by a non affiliated militia
and was recently integrated under the DCIM and designated for
people in vulnerable situations at DCIM is an acronym for

(01:44:14):
Libya's Directorate for Combat in Illegal Migration. It's essentially a
department of their Interior Ministry. Former detainees from that facility
said that guards raped women and some were cohoersed into
sex in exchange for their release or for essentials such
as clean water grace. A pseudonym said she was heavily

(01:44:36):
beaten for refusing to comply with such a demand. I
told the guard no. He used the gun to knock
me back. He used a letter soldier's shoe to kick
me from my waist. Two young women at the facility
attempted to commit suicide as a result of such abuse.
Three women also said that two babies detained with their
mothers after an attempted sea crossing had died in early

(01:44:58):
twenty twenty one. Their guards refused to transfer them to
a hospital for a critical medical treatment and it's The
International report documents similar patterns of human rights violations, including
severe beatings, sexual violence, extortion, forced labor, and in human
conditions across seven DCIM centers in Libya. In Abuisa Center

(01:45:21):
in the city of al Zaya, DTNES reported being deprived
of nutritious food to the point of starvation end.

Speaker 4 (01:45:28):
Correct.

Speaker 7 (01:45:29):
Yeah, Libya is is just on a completely different level.
Like we have we have systematic torture on almost all
border crossings by European border guards, but Libya just manages
to do worse than that, just systematically enslave rate, murder, torture.

(01:45:54):
And I think it's important to stress that, Like there's
this Libyan Coast Guard. They're funded by the European Union,
so the opinion Union will go out with drones support
the boat of migrants. Previously, the European Union actually had
rescue ships, but the European Union, if a boat is
near another boat in distress, there's an obligation to rescue,

(01:46:17):
and after the rescue, you have to bring the people
to a safe court. So having a boat at sea
meant that the European Border Agency Front Tax was obliged
to rescue people at sea, and so they just thought,
let's just do away with the boats and let's just
have helicopters and drones, so we can still spot boats
that are sinking, but we cannot help them, and instead.

Speaker 5 (01:46:40):
They are obligated to anymore.

Speaker 7 (01:46:43):
Yeah, I mean they're physically. Yeah, exactly. They they they
managed to escape that responsibility under maritime law, and then
they paid the Libyan Coast Guard to rescue rescue people
quote unquote, Libya is so bad that weally migrants just
jump in the water if they see a Libyan coast
guard because people prefer to drown them to be taken

(01:47:06):
back to Libya. The Libyan coast Guard takes the people
on the boat, brings them back to Libyan mainland, and
actually sells them to the militias running the detention centers.
So the Libyan Coast Guard gets paid twice for stopping migrants,
first by the European Union and secondly by the militias
that will later sell them as slates or use them

(01:47:29):
for slavery. And this is what we have been funding
for years, and there have been extensive documentation about these
human rights violations and the very direct link of the
EU funding, and it just keeps going.

Speaker 5 (01:47:46):
I think it was a year or so back where
I saw a video of someone, a woman on a
dinghy who was just incredibly emotional. She was just exclaiming
all the time like I'd rather die than go back
to Libya, which.

Speaker 7 (01:48:03):
Yeah, it's yeah, just literally what it is.

Speaker 5 (01:48:07):
Yeah, yeah, I would encourage that the listeners to just
google something like Libya migrant detentions or something and look
at the pictures because it's you might.

Speaker 7 (01:48:21):
Get like traumatized, but you will be more aware of
the horrors in the world.

Speaker 11 (01:48:26):
Yeah.

Speaker 5 (01:48:26):
Yeah, that they're not great pictures to look at, but
thank God for you good sleep. Like, yeah, I think
it's important to see those things because that is the
reality that we in Europe often do not get to see,
and this is the reality that has been created by
our overlords. So what the EU is doing is to

(01:48:51):
be very blunt, extending its own borders into sovereign territory
of states outside of Europe to stop migrants from even
entering the EU. Proponents of these policies will undoubtedly argue
that this saves lives by preventing people from crossing the
Mediterranean in overcrowded boats and ginghis personally, I would argue

(01:49:12):
that people will continue to make that crossing if only
to escape the EU funded hellholes that these regimes create
in order to get that sweet, sweet EU funding. What
is definitely very concerning is that despite criticisms from NGOs
such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch Europe will

(01:49:33):
likely continue these practices. Only last year did it sign
a deal with Tunisia with the attention of using that
as a third country, as they call it, to prevent
sea crossings. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen stated
that this could be a blueprint for cooperation with other countries.

(01:49:53):
To the surprise of no one, this will very likely
increase the human rights violations and abusance that happen there.
And after this, I have two examples of stories that
that happens at the EU borders that are I think
particularly the heartbreaking. And this was also the hardest part

(01:50:14):
for me to write, because there are so many stories
out there that I think deserve to be heard and
deserve to have like some lights shone on there just
to show people the reality. But that would be that
would turn into a very very long episode.

Speaker 7 (01:50:34):
Yeah, can I can I quickly just I would like
to say something about the these deals and I think
there is something very ironic about the European Union pretending
to value democracy and human rights and ladlah Well, I
mean what you've just said makes it apondantly clear that
human rights in Europe are just for Europeans and not

(01:50:57):
for humans. But I would also just like to stretch
that it's very strange and I think not maybe often
enough address that what Europe is doing is it's just
bribing countries. It is bribing countries to stop migrants. It
is bribing countries to take unwanted migrants back through deportation.
It is often also forced to take on its own citizens.

(01:51:20):
So it's not only people from Sub Sahara Africa traveling
through Libya, but it's also Libyan people themselves. So they
have elected a government, they have an interest themselves as well,
maybe in having the ability to move away from Libya,
and the you needs to come up with enormous sums
of money to force these governments to Yeah, why do

(01:51:43):
they need that money, because that's not in the interest
of the country or its citizens to do this. And
especially in the Netherlands, there is this enormous Yeah, there's
just this expectation that if we don't like something, other
countries should do something about it. So in the Netherlands,
Moroccan migrants specifically are filified a lot and and Algerian migrants,

(01:52:06):
and both countries have not been very collaborative with deportations,
but like, why the hell should they support the forced
return of their own citizens who don't want to go
back to their countries. Yeah, like there's no reason for

(01:52:27):
them to do that, except if Europe is just abusing
its power and forcing it these countries to do things
that are yeah, not in their interest. I mean a
lot of these border guards. I think Libya is an
exception because they they actually make money out of the
migrants in so many different ways. But if you look
at Serbia or Bosnia, they are forced to control their borders,

(01:52:50):
which is super expensive. And like, these are countries who
have other issues to fix, Like, yeah, maybe they should
make they want to focus on building up their country
and improving living conditions, but instead the EU is just
giving them money to yah to protect, to protect borders
of people who aren't mainly just walking through their countries,

(01:53:12):
Like that's not really a big problem for them. And yeah,
it's very runic because Europe is like justifying its migration
policies with this idea that every country has sovereignty over
who it allows access. That's like legally, that's like the
fundament of migration deterrence, but it only claims that right

(01:53:33):
for itself. So if other countries say, well, I don't
care if there is Serians walking through my country, like
maybe they'll spend some money and they'll just leave anyway. Yeah,
other countries don't have the right. I think Belarus is
an interesting example as well, because Belarus welcomed migrants and
then brought them to the new border with Poland and
Lithuania mainly, and Belarus has every right to give freest

(01:53:56):
to people.

Speaker 10 (01:53:57):
You know, it's actually like, just like the namelet says
the rights to give frees out to people, battle US
says that right too, and then of course people can
also go to the border across the border if they
want and ask for asylum.

Speaker 7 (01:54:12):
So yeah, I just wanted to highlight the irony of how.

Speaker 9 (01:54:15):
Incredibly one sided Europe is in how we can claim
that we want to keep people out, but other countries
are not allowed to have sovereign migration policies.

Speaker 11 (01:54:29):
Yeah, we see it exactly the same in the US, right,
like we're trying to outsource processing of migrants to quatemoleson ondoors.
We are trying to I mean, we pay Mexico massive
some to Moody to enforce aborder. Right like we saw
it's funny. There are three gaps outside of a combat
that people who have listened to this podcast will be

(01:54:49):
very familiar with my reporting on. And we saw those
gaps closed down not when people started coming so much,
but once once legacy media outlets showed up. Then by December,
the US had a bilateral meeting with Mexico, and very
soon thereafter, we saw Mexican National Guard sitting at those

(01:55:10):
gaps in the border wall. The US is border like
if people are leaving Mexico, it's not Mexico's problem. But
we saw them with technicals and machine guns policing those
gaps in the border. And the US gives a ton
of money to countries to enforce its border right to
prevent migration and get extremely The US has even taken

(01:55:31):
actions to prosecute airlines that fly people north so that
they can too. Yeah. Yeah, it's.

Speaker 7 (01:55:42):
Like insane, like half a million or something for like
bringing one migrant without of these Yeah. Yeah, two is externalization,
just as like bribing Libya to protect the border. It's
also like actually forcing carriers, like forcing transport. Com needs
to be the border guard.

Speaker 11 (01:56:02):
Yeah, to ascertain whether you have a visa or not.
Decide if you have the right to travel. Let's pick
up with those examples you make, because I think it
is important for people to kind of have a human

(01:56:23):
face or a human story.

Speaker 5 (01:56:25):
Well, to preface this, like migrants are under EU law,
migrants are supposed to apply for aside in the first
EU country that they enter. This policy is likely the
result of fear from more affluent European countries that the
majority of refugees will travel to those countries. This means

(01:56:46):
that the countries geographically closest to Africa and the Middle
East are the ones supposed to take in most refugees.
Think of Spain, Greece, Italy, Bulgaria. They however, are not
too afphusiastic at the prospect of taking in huge amounts
of migrants.

Speaker 7 (01:57:03):
More are the migrants themselves.

Speaker 5 (01:57:04):
By the way, I can imagine that they're also a
lot too keen to live in Bulgaria, especially after what
follows next, because this story happened at Turkish Bulgarian border.
But I also personally it's just incredibly cruel that like

(01:57:25):
the Netherlands and Germany and the Scandinavian countries are like,
oh no, you should take you should take all those refugees,
like we don't want them here.

Speaker 7 (01:57:35):
And I would say that's like where the outsourcing starts,
Like that's you law. We have shance, so we have
like free travel within the u EU, but that comes
with extremely violently guarding the outside of the EU. So
if you are a border country, you are only welcome
if you can prove to us that you are cruel
enough to discourage people from crossing this border. Because again,

(01:57:58):
like Bulgaria doesn't really have that much interest in guarding
the borders if people can just if they any way
want to go to Western European countries, right, so it's
a way to again to I would say, the border
externalization already starts from like the main countries of destination,
which is like France and Germany, and even Bulgaria would

(01:58:21):
not have much interest in stopping migrants if there were
not all of these rules to make them responsible.

Speaker 5 (01:58:30):
Exactly. But again, which is why I said, like the
more affluent countries within you don't want that for reasons
that I think anyone can think of at this point
of the story. Is where pushbacks come into play. This
is a tactic used by the countries I just mentioned.
It's a set of measures that force people back over

(01:58:50):
the border they crossed, often immediately after it. This practice
is often a force for violence and does not take
into account the circumstances of nagrants and denies them the
opportunity to apply for asylum. This means that the EU
does pushback people that have very legitimate reasons to apply
for asylum. Under the EU's own rules, I'm going to quote,

(01:59:14):
pushbacks violate the prohibition of collective expulsion of asylum seekers
in Protocol four of the European Convention on Human Rights
and often violate the international law prohibiting on non refoulment. No,
it's French, yeah, ah, okay, I was never good at French.

Speaker 9 (01:59:37):
All right.

Speaker 5 (01:59:40):
It's a fundamental principle of international law that forbids a
country receiving asylum seekers from returning them to a country
in which they would be improbable danger of persecution based
on race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group,
or political opinion. That being said, I'm aware even like

(02:00:00):
the Dutch government has sent like LGBTQI people back to
countries where they could be like persecuted for that. So again,
those rules seem to be very optional So what follows
now is two examples of border practices that I think
are particularly egregious. So on October third, twenty twenty two,

(02:00:26):
Abdullah Mohammed, aged nineteen, a Syrian refugee, attempted to cross
the Bulgarian Turkish border. After being pushed back by border guards,
they threw stones at the border about emphasize here at
the border itself, not at the guards. After this, a
shot rang and Abdullah fell to the ground with a

(02:00:47):
bullet lodged one centimeter away from his heart. He survived
and was interviewed by Lighthouse Reports. He states that there
wasn't intent to kill when he was shot. That's his belief.
The bullet also pierced this hand, which is now partially paralyzed.
There seems to be no justification or reason whatsoever for

(02:01:10):
border guards to have shot, or to have shot with
live ammunition. This was the first time that such an
incident was called on video. If you want, you can
find it linked on lice Lighthouse Reports attached to the
article about this incident. The video is not as bad
as you might think, but watch you at your own risk.

(02:01:33):
As far as I'm aware, there have been similar rumors before,
but this was the first instant that has entered like
the public record, or the first time it was actually documented.
Needless to say, no one should be shot for attempting
to cross a border. I don't care about anyone's opinion
or bad faith nuances. People have a right to apply

(02:01:55):
for asylum, and as far as I'm concerned, this was
a deliberate and calculated attempted murder.

Speaker 7 (02:02:01):
Yeah. I do think there have been quite a lot
of videos of people being shot, and definitely people making
statements about it and just having the actual bullet in
their body to prove that it happened. Yeah, it happened
in Croatia, it happened in Greece. Greece is a habit
of shooting at boats as well and in that way

(02:02:22):
making people drown. Yeah. And of course, apart from the shootings,
which I would say on the European borders that they
are still kind of rare. The yeah, the pushbacks and
the violence and the torture is yeah, the evidence of
that is like an enormous pile. There's when I was

(02:02:44):
working in Bosnia, I think that was in twenty eighteen nineteen,
there was no video footage of a pushback and there
was a journalist who volunteered with us for a while
and they were the first one to film it. But
in the past years they're been like many many horrible
videos of people being beaten up and actual torture.

Speaker 11 (02:03:10):
Yeah. Of course, in the US, under the pretense of
protecting us all from the coronavirus, which still killed millions
of people in this country, we have something called Title
forty two, which allowed border patrol to quote unquote repatriate
people to Mexico even if they weren't Mexican, and just
drop them back in Mexico to include laterally transferring them,

(02:03:32):
which is a pseudonym for kind of trafficking them halfway
across the country and then dumping them in a place
where they have no connections, no money, and no way
of establishing themselves. Right, And this led to massively increased
a fatalities at the border because people were trying to
avoid border patrol where they coming in and surrendering themselves

(02:03:53):
for asylum as we see now, and massively increase encounters
at the border. Encounters don't necessarily represent unique individuals, right,
this is my I will beat this fucking drum until
I die. But apparently our colleagues at New York Times
haven't worked it out yet. Wall Street Journal, almost every NPR,
every big outlet in the United States that likes to

(02:04:17):
commission border reporters who don't live on the border will
tell you that that, like the number of migrants went up.
An encounter is an encounter. If someone crosses and then
gets bounced into Mexico and then crosses again and does
that five times, that's five encounters. It's the same person.
BP doesn't doesn't keep records of unique individuals under Title
forty two, or didn't keep under Title forty two. We

(02:04:37):
don't know how many people, but we know that more
people tried to cross, and we also know that every
time you try to cross, you risk your life, and
so we certainly know that more lives will put in
danger because of this policy, because again, like turning someone
back is not going to stop them, especially when you're
dropping them in a country where they don't want to
be and where they're not from. Like, the people aren't
just going to be like, oh, okay, cool, I'll stay

(02:05:00):
in Mexico like that. That has not historically been the case.

Speaker 7 (02:05:04):
Yeah, we had exactly the same kind of juggling with numbers.
I remember people in Bosnia, some of them would get
pushed back like forty or fifty times, and so they
would be counted as individuals stops. Yes, indeed, so it
would sound as if there was like, I don't know,
tens of thousands, and I was like, it's really not
that many, though, Yeah. Yeah, literally count the same person

(02:05:29):
again and again and again.

Speaker 1 (02:05:31):
Yeah.

Speaker 7 (02:05:31):
And also I would like to say that like, yes,
it is a border like the EO border countries, but
it is also much deeper into the territory. So we
externalize the border towards like Libya and Niger and way
further even, but we also internalized the border, so we
would find we would have people who had made it

(02:05:52):
to Austria or Italy. They would get caught in Austria Italy,
be pushed back to Slovenia, taken over by Slownia police,
brought to the Croatian border, taken off by Creation police
often in Croatia, get tortured and then be dumped on
the Boston border, which would be the EU border as well.
So that's what they call chain pushbacks. And yeah, I yeah,

(02:06:15):
so I worked in the Boston Hetzegovina, which is none you,
so we would get the people after they had been
pushed back. Yeah. The things that people have done, like
water guards have done to migrants are yeah, I don't
know if you actually want to use this footage, right,
It's like it's really really gruesome. Like in Bosnia, they

(02:06:39):
would they would be like snow form, like they have
very long and very cold winters. They would take away
people's shoes and socks and like make them walk for
five hours on bare feet. So one of the main
tasks of our volunteers or medical volunteers was amputating toes.
People would Yeah, people would come back with broken bones,

(02:07:01):
broken skulls. People would be sent back with just their underwear.
That minus twenty degrees celsius.

Speaker 11 (02:07:08):
I don't know how much that is in the US,
neither do way. It's I think they come together around
minus twenty. It's extremely the cultret.

Speaker 7 (02:07:17):
Gets the more accurate.

Speaker 5 (02:07:18):
Yeah.

Speaker 7 (02:07:18):
So like at some point we start to call this
could torture as a kind of specific yeah, tactic that
mainly the Croatian border guards were using.

Speaker 6 (02:07:29):
Yeah.

Speaker 7 (02:07:29):
Also, yeah, and I also want to stress again that yes,
it is the European border countries in the East and
in the west and in the south. But when I
was working in Bosnia, Croatia was not yet part of
the Shanan Zone, and like politicians were pretty explicit about

(02:07:52):
Croatia can only enter if they have solved their border problem,
even though there was constantly proof of torture coming out.
The same happened with Bulgaria and Romania. So these countries
were very very much pressured by countries like the Netherlands
and Germany, who like you know, pretend not to have

(02:08:12):
anything to do with these atrocities, but who were very
very explicitly saying if you are not, if you don't
get your borders in control, you cannot join the economic Yeah,
you cannot have the open borders within the U.

Speaker 11 (02:08:28):
Yeah, it's so sad to see all these serenities. This
is very depressing. My friends and I were helping someone
who had it, like the early onset of like like
trench foot, Yeah, a couple of weeks ago.

Speaker 9 (02:08:41):
Yeah.

Speaker 11 (02:08:42):
Yeah, we don't do it, like I guess as a
policy as much as just by default. But in the
mountains and then desert here in California when it rains,
areas that are drive the rest of the year, turning
to rivers and migrants have to cross. And we've also
seen a large number of migrants drown this year in
San Diego, and I more will have drowned if very

(02:09:02):
brave people hadn't risk their own lives rescuing them. Not
people who were working for the government, just individuals who cared.
We've also seen a young man from Jamaica recently passed away.
This was in early probably early for some February and March.
From February March. He was on a migrant trail. I
know exactly where, about a few hundred yards actually from

(02:09:27):
where my friends have left warm clothes, hand warmers, jackets, food, water,
But he wasn't able to make it that far and
for whatever reason, you know, like one death of a
tragedy and a million statistic or whatever. But that really
impacted me. He was actually on the other side of
the border when he died, but like he could have
thrown a stone into the US and it's not a

(02:09:49):
fence to border there. But yet we have chosen a
policy which made that young man die of hypothermia by
himself on the side of a mountain because for some reason,
that's what we've decided or our government has decided it's
better than having him come here and be able to
make his case and live with us and get a
job or what have you. And yeah, that was just

(02:10:12):
a particularly heartbreaking one for me because I knew that,
like he was five minutes walk away, ten minutes walk
away from potentially being okay, And like that that's why
my friends and I like to go out and leave
stuff for people. But it shouldn't be a group of
anarchists and migrant activists and people of faith like hiking

(02:10:36):
into the desert every weekend with backpacks full of water
and food and warm clothes. That shouldn't be what prevents
people from dying coming here.

Speaker 7 (02:10:45):
Yeah, there's a kind of cruelty in that, even like
it is amazing to help people to be part of
a group of people who commit themselves to yeah, to
resist these incredibly violent borders and to support people who
decide to across them. But at the same time, it
is just so problematic that someone's life, like access to

(02:11:08):
food or healthcare, depends on whether or not there are
some crazy volunteers willing to do that. So like it
shouldn't be like our you know, are like, yeah, like
I don't want to have that power over someone's life,
and I think no one should have that power over
someone's life. But this system where basically migrants' lives are disposable,

(02:11:31):
also mean that it's like optional to offer super basic
things that can save these lives.

Speaker 11 (02:11:38):
Yeah, yeah, very much, sir.

Speaker 5 (02:11:41):
Are you ready for the second depressing story?

Speaker 11 (02:11:43):
Yeah, let's let's get the second to break.

Speaker 5 (02:11:46):
Let's hit rock bottom.

Speaker 11 (02:11:47):
Yeah yeah, yeah.

Speaker 5 (02:11:50):
So I'm sure you've you've heard this story before, but
still I think it's very much worth repeating. So on
June fourteenth, twenty twenty three, the Adriana, a ship on
its way degrees, capsized and subsequently sank. The boat allegedly
had the capacity for about four hundred people, but carried

(02:12:12):
around seven hundred and fifty. Of all those lives, one
hundred and four were saved, eight two were confirmed deaths,
and up to four five hundreds are missing and presumed death,
the majority of which are women and children. I'll refer
back to the Lighthouse Reports, who did a reconstruction of

(02:12:33):
the incident which makes this even worse than it already is.
Transcriptions and witness statements obtained by Lighthouse Reports, the Oshpiego
Monitors iiraj Lpos report is United and the Times strongly
suggests that the Greek coast Guard attempted to conceal their

(02:12:56):
own involvement in this stragedy. Nine survivors were asked to
make statements, none of which appeared to blame the coast guard.
Different suggestions were given for the capsizing, blaming it on
the edge of the ship or the lack of life jackets.
Four of these statements contained near identical phrasing. It was

(02:13:17):
later discovered that one of the translators was a coast
guard himself. There were other translators, all of which were
sworn in on that very day later in Greek courts.
Six of those nine stated that the coast guard did
in fact tow the boat before it went down. Two
survivors tot Lighthouse reports that certain parts of their testimony

(02:13:39):
was omitted in the transcription. To clarify that a bit
because of what I said earlier that migrants have are
obligated to apply for asylum in the country in which
they arrive. It's become a habit of like coast Guard
and frontect to attrag them to certain areas of of

(02:14:01):
water that are part of for example, Italy or Greece.
This particular one boat may have been an attempt to
drag the boat to Italian waters so the Greeks didn't
have to take them in. So, to quote the report
from Lighthouse sixteen out of the seventeen survivors we spoke

(02:14:24):
to set the coast guard attached the rope to the
vessel and tried to tow it shortly before it capsized.
Four also claimed that the coast guard was attempting to
tow the boat to Italian waters, while four reported that
the coast guard caused more depths by circling around the
boat after it capsized, making waves that caused the boat's
carcass to sink. End quote not great badtime stories.

Speaker 11 (02:14:49):
If you ask me, yeah, things.

Speaker 4 (02:14:55):
There there's just no words like yeah, I.

Speaker 11 (02:14:59):
Think this like I don't think anyone should be okay
with it. Perhaps I think we're going to talk again
about how people can oppose this, and how people can

(02:15:19):
try their best to to a change the system and
be do what they can, you know, while we're stuck
in this terrible place to make things more survivable and
less cruel. So perhaps we can finish up here with
you guys, plugging anything you want to. If there are
orgs or social media where people can follow both of
your work, then I'd love to hear about them.

Speaker 7 (02:15:43):
Yeah, you can follow us on migrates. That's the end.
I think it's like for English and migrator is I
G R E A C. Yeah, the system is super fucked.
Are SIP super fucked?

Speaker 5 (02:16:01):
It is?

Speaker 7 (02:16:02):
Yeah, it's really treating human beings as disposable and human
a monment. Life has absolutely no value. But I also
just wanted to say that I think a lot of
migrants who cross borders they are aware of the risks.
But I think it's also important to say that it
isn't it's a kind of resistance. It is a kind

(02:16:22):
of We started that episode with talking about passport privilege
and the lottery of birth, and I think we should
not only look at like the bad border guards and
the good people helping or something, but I think we
should also acknowledge that the people crossing the borders are
doing like taking unbelievable risk, often also to help their

(02:16:47):
families or their friends. Yeah, and I think crossing a
border without permission is a kind of resistance. And I
think we as people who yeah, do direct support or
direct aid. We are I mean for me, it's also
part of the resistance, is like helping people cross the border.

(02:17:07):
I don't mind if yeah, people that want to accuse
me of being a smaller or something, or like aiding
illegal border crossings. Like the whole point is that people
should be able to cross that border.

Speaker 12 (02:17:18):
Yeah.

Speaker 11 (02:17:19):
Yeah, I think that's a really good Someone recently accused
us of in Cucumber that said that people people come
to a cumber because we feed them, and like it's
fucking ludicrous, Like you didn't fucking come from a guinea
because I'm going to give you a peanut butter sandwich on.

Speaker 7 (02:17:35):
Some breadt like the best food.

Speaker 4 (02:17:37):
Yeah yeah, yeah, like it is.

Speaker 1 (02:17:39):
It is not the best.

Speaker 11 (02:17:42):
It's the best we can do, like you know, less
than an other person or what have you. But like no,
like but I guess. But I am doing it because
I believe that person should be able to and not
just because they're in those dire circumstances, but because I
fundamentally support they're right, Like I want them to be
my neighbor. Yeah, I'm okay with that, and that's why

(02:18:02):
I'm doing it.

Speaker 7 (02:18:04):
Yeah, absolutely, I.

Speaker 5 (02:18:06):
Think we should all keep in mind how many of
our friends, family, or other loved ones have moved at
some point in their lives for a job or opportunities
or love or whatever. That the essence of like human
movement is the same, right right there?

Speaker 7 (02:18:26):
Yeah, yeah, yeah, And it is our politicians who choose
that this movement is a problem, that the movement of
these people specifically is a threat or danger. Whereas I think, like, yeah,
if you talk about like racism or systemic racism, the questions,
I was like, yeah, but what is the system? Then?
This is the system, the visa policies, the actual border.

(02:18:50):
This is what is keeping people like is trying to
keep people in exploitable conditions in the global South, is
doing incredible cruelties to them just for political gain. Is
exploiting people who do make it, but who are undocumented
or on fragile residence status and are still exploited and
deprived of basic rights even if they do arrive to

(02:19:12):
their country of destination. Like this system is designed to
create an underclass of people that is easily exploitable. There
are companies who are profiting from this. There is absolutely
no intention to stop migration, but there is definitely an
intention to marginalize and segregate migrants and yeah, and just

(02:19:35):
profit of it.

Speaker 10 (02:19:36):
Yeah.

Speaker 5 (02:19:38):
And meanwhile, we do the absolute bare minimum to provide
aids to those countries to make the living conditions there better.

Speaker 7 (02:19:47):
Yeah, these borders are playing a role and keeping people
exploitable there and making it possible to make them work
for incredibly low wages and horrible labor conditions. Like these
borders are forcing them into the in the those conditions.

Speaker 5 (02:20:03):
I think the mandatory international Development aid that countries should
pay is like zero points zero zero seven percent or
something of the GDP, and the majority of like Western
countries are not doing that even that. So it's very

(02:20:23):
much like the problem is that they're coming here, not
that the conditions there are ship and war keeping them shits.
Yeah great, I'm a bit bumped now.

Speaker 4 (02:20:35):
Yeah.

Speaker 11 (02:20:36):
Sorry, we've left you all saide. We will come back
with Rose again and make to talk about ways to
make it better. Is there anything you wanted to plug,
make anything you want people to give the time money
to follow on the internet.

Speaker 5 (02:20:49):
I just want to give a shout out to like
organizations such as migrates, but also the abolished Frontext campaign
and United Against refugee DEFs, and it would urge anyone
to who feels compassionate to help out. There are so
many ways you can help out, even if you don't

(02:21:10):
know it yet, it is sorely needed. Like wherever you are,
whoever you are, you can help out.

Speaker 7 (02:21:24):
Hi.

Speaker 11 (02:21:24):
Everyone, it's me James, and I just wanted to read
you this today. We're going to put it in our
episode this week because it's a cause that's important to us,
and so we thought it would be something that might
be important to you too as well. On the tenth
of June twenty twenty four, Leonard Peltier, an enrolled member
of the Turtle Band of Chippewa of Lakota and Ajibwei
Ancestry and the longest serving political prisoner in the United States,

(02:21:45):
will be appearing before the US Parole Commission for the
first time since two thousand and nine. He faces staunch
opposition from the FBI and other law enforcement agencies due
to having allegedly killed two FBI agents in a firefight
on the twenty six of June nineteen seventy five, after
the agents appeared on reservation land to execute a pretextural warrant.

(02:22:07):
The initial firefight occurred during the quote reign of terror
on Pine Ridge in the wake of the occupation of
Wounded Kney, a time of extreme violence when federal law
enforcement installed a puppet tribal chair and was arming vigilantes
who targeted Indigenous traditionalists. Every since leading up to these events,
as well as subsequent investigation and mister Peltier's extradition, trial, conviction,

(02:22:29):
and sentencing, were characterized by gross misconduct on the part
of law enforcement, the prosecution, and the courts. Mister Peltier's
co defendants were separately tried and acquitted on grounds of
self defense. Mister Peltier was railroaded, and his case is
tainted by discrimination at every level, ranging from the withholding
of exculpatory evidence to the torture and coercion of extradition

(02:22:51):
and trial witnesses, and from the refusal of the judge
to dismiss and vowedly racist Dura to the apologetic gymnastics
of the courts affirming his convin in the face of
meritorious legal challenges at admitted evidence about rageous government misdeeds.
Mister Peltier has been in prison for more than forty
eight years, and he's almost eighty years old. He suffers

(02:23:13):
from chronic and potentially lethal conditions for which he receives
insufficient and substandard medical care. If you want to take
action to hashtag free Lenard Peltier, you can call the
US Parole Commission at two zero two three four six
seven zero zero zero, And if you'd like to find
more information on how to support, you can go to

(02:23:35):
this r L it's h t t P colon slash
slash n d n C dot c C slash free
Leonard Peltier. That's fr e E L e O n
A R d P E L t I E R,

(02:23:55):
or you can follow n d N collective on social
media for more ways to support him. More information on
Daniel Peltier. Listen to Margaret's podcast on the Lakota Nation.
I read in the Spirit of the Crazy Horse by
Peter Matthewson.

Speaker 1 (02:24:21):
Welcome back to It Could Happen Here, a podcast about
things falling apart, and today, the thing that's fallen apart
is our shared concept of reality, our ability to exists
as a population within the same world, or at least
versions of the same world that even slightly interact with

(02:24:41):
each other. And my guest for this episode about the
breaking of reality. Garrison, Davis, Garrison, what do you know
about the USS Eisenhower.

Speaker 4 (02:24:52):
Is that is that from Star Trek?

Speaker 1 (02:24:54):
Is that a Yeah, that's the ship that they all
fly around and in Star Trek, the many voyages of
the Starship Eisenhower. It's continually miss such a different show
every episode. They're just fucking with Guatemala like every single episode,
but cards just finding another way to overthrow the government

(02:25:16):
of Guatemala.

Speaker 7 (02:25:19):
Yeah.

Speaker 4 (02:25:19):
No, that's like alternate universe evil Gene Roddenberry.

Speaker 1 (02:25:22):
Yeah, yeah, yeah, if Gene Roddenberry had been like a
hardcore conservative. Yeah, speaking of hardcore conservatives, we are talking
again about alternate realities, and the USS Eisenhower is relevant
to that because it's kind of been the subject of
a reality fracture recently, just talking in terms of like
things that are actually true. The USS Eisenhower is a

(02:25:45):
very big aircraft carrier. It's got something like five thousand
people and its crew. It's nuclear powered. It can stay
i think up to like twenty five years. Potentially, it
could stay in the field without needing to like refuel
or anything like that.

Speaker 4 (02:25:58):
That's wild.

Speaker 1 (02:25:59):
Yeah. Yeah, Aircraft carriers are insane things, and it is
the center of an Air Force carrier group, which is
a group of I think there's something like ten or
eleven other ships in it, a combination of like you've
got like destroyers, these little missile ships. I think there's
some submarines. Probably an ice cream ship in there somewhere.
That's kind of like a key thing the US military does. Anyway,
the Eisenhower is the ship that's out in the Gulf

(02:26:21):
of Aiden right now throwing down with the Hoothys. And
on the thirty first of last month, there was a
series of attacks launched by the Eisenhower along with some
of our British allies, striking thirteen Hoothy targets at various
locations in Yemen. This was in response to a number

(02:26:42):
of attacks that the Hoothies had launched recently on shipping
in the region, including I think they hit a Greek
ship a couple of times. The strikes came also a
day after the Hoothy's shot down an m Q nine
Reaper drone, which was the third downing of a Reaper
drone in May. So the Hoothies have been dropping reefs
pretty regularly. So anyway, all of this led to a

(02:27:03):
massive series of strikes that were kind of you know,
launched from the Eisenhower on Houthy targets. Houthy rebels said
that the air strikes killed at least sixteen people and
wounded thirty five others. I think that death toll has
risen since the article, the Washington Post article I'm looking
at now, and that you know, we're going to be
talking about things that are credible and not credible. If

(02:27:24):
the Hoothies say, given the attacks launched, that death toll
seems pretty credible to me, just based on other strikes
that I've read about. The Houthis launched a retaliatory strikes
on the Enterprise, or at least they claim that they did.
Wait on the on the Eisenhower. We did used to
have an aircraft carrier name the Enterprise. I don't I
think we've decommissioned it since I'm blaming real fast.

Speaker 4 (02:27:47):
He would he would not, he will?

Speaker 1 (02:27:49):
He would He would be fucking his way through the
Houthis already. Kirk would have. That's ah. God, Star Trek
is so much more fun to talk about than actual geopolos,
which are mostly depressing with the genocide and all anyway,
the houthis claimed that they launched an attack on the
Eisenhower the US. The DoD says that they did not.

(02:28:13):
The Hoothy Press person stated that they hit the Eisenhower.
The hit was accurate and direct. Again, there's no evidence
of this whatsoever that's been posted. The story seems to
have started percolating out into kind of lefty media when
Hoothy Press people made this announcement. I think the first
direct statement I found about it outside of like hoothy

(02:28:36):
Press resources was a Twitter account called for an online
news magazine calling West Asian geopolitics called The Cradle. I'm
not wildly familiar with The Cradle. They've got something like
one hundred and nine thousand followers on Twitter, and they
seem to mostly be you could say, like a broadly
sort of anti imperialist left. Most of their content lately

(02:28:59):
is very pro Gaza. You know, there's stuff like articles
about Israeli organ trafficking networks in Turkey. You know, they've
got like video clips of like pro Palestinian protesters getting
dunks in on pro israel protesters, a like protests and
stuff like that, very standard stuff. And on the thirty
first they posted a They made a post yeah, basically

(02:29:21):
restating what the Houthis had said, although they instead of
saying the Houthis made a claim that they had struck
the Eisenhower, they claimed it was ye many Armed Forces.
It's an easy way to tell that someone is not
accurately reporting on what's happening in Yemen because the Houthis
are actively at war with YEA many armed forces. Like
that is the actual reality of the situation on the
ground over there. So this got picked up by chunks

(02:29:44):
of lefty media, and particularly like American lefty media. I
think one of the first big accounts to take this
story was a guy named Ashton Forbes. You know Ashton.

Speaker 4 (02:29:56):
I don't think I've heard of Ashton Forbes. This is
this whole like left media anti imperialism bubble has just
gotten so big the past like six months.

Speaker 1 (02:30:08):
These are mostly accounts, and I believe this is true
for Ashton too, who like they blew up in the
wake of October seventh once, particularly once the Israeli started
launching massive strikes on Gaza. And they primarily exist within
the profit ecosystem that Elon established in Twitter right where

(02:30:28):
if you have a verified account and you get a
lot of engagements from other verified accounts, you get a
chunk of money from Twitter, right, And so all these
people figured out that there's a huge appetite for reposted
videos from Gaza or videos that you just claim are
reposted videos from Gaza. A huge number of them are
from Syria, and if they make people really angry or horrified,

(02:30:50):
they'll get shared and get a ton of engagement, and
you will get a check, right, Like, That's that's where
Ashton comes out of. That's where all these guys come
out of. So Ashton sees. I don't know if he
picked it up directly from the hoothy press people. I
don't know if he picked it up from that thing
on the cradle, But he posts the next day breaking
and he's got of course, of course I'll show you.

(02:31:10):
I'll share screen garrisons. You can see he's got he's
got the two little sirens. Yeah, he's got the two
little sirens on either side. Oh yeah, no, of course
there's a million of this guy. This guy is all
over the internet. A source has informed me that the
USS Eisenhower has been sunk all caps. Mainstream media reports
from yesterday claim the ship was not hit by Houthy missiles.

(02:31:32):
Social media shows conflicting reports of damage. I'm seeking corroboration
on this potentially huge story. So first we see the
escalation of the HOUTHI say, we shot at the Eisenhower
and we hit it right. They didn't claim they'd sunk it.
I think because the Houthis are like, they're not dumb,
and like, that's an easy claim to disprove. Whereas yeah,
you can kind of like there's not as much live

(02:31:54):
footage of this, you could kind of get away for
a while with making people think maybe you damaged it
a little bit, or at least you got close, you know.
But a source a source, yes, a source from citizen
journalist Ashton Forbes speaking truth to power. Yeah. The evidence
that Forbes post, because he says, like social media so
there's conflicting reports of damage, is a screen grab of

(02:32:16):
what looks like an aircraft carrier that's on fire. You
can see a water very.

Speaker 4 (02:32:21):
Boring, very very blurry picture as well.

Speaker 1 (02:32:24):
Yeah, and there's there's there's a watermark. I don't know
if you can see it clearly on this gear, but
like that says Arabic journal so he clearly took it
from another website. Right now, I would describe the image
quality of this as cell phone camera circa two thousand
and seven.

Speaker 4 (02:32:39):
That's accurate. Yeah, it roughly at like three d s camera. Yeah, yeah,
it looked.

Speaker 1 (02:32:45):
It's not even super clear to me that that's an
aircraft carrier. Forbes's post obviously, you know, does not occur
in a vacuum here, And it would be deeply fucked
up for me to say, like citizen journalists shouldn't exist,
Like if someone identifies themselves as that, it's a sign
that they're danger or that they're they're full of shit, right,
because recent history is filled with people who call themselves

(02:33:07):
citizen journalists putting out bullshit. But like it's also filled
with instances of citizens doing crucial journalism in the absence
of credential professionals.

Speaker 4 (02:33:14):
Especially in Gaza right now.

Speaker 1 (02:33:16):
Oh yeah, I mean that's basically everything, right, in part
because most of the journalists who have tried to report
on it have been fucking murdered. But even in the US,
we have the recent case of Darnella Frasier, who was
the eighteen year old woman who filmed the murder of
George Floyd on May twenty fifth, twenty twenty. She received
a Pulitzer Prize the next year for her video. However, journalism,
while again there's a lot of value in citizen journalism,

(02:33:37):
journalism is also a technical trade and there are in
fact some things that random dirts on the Internet should
not report on, and an attack on the Eisenhower is
maybe one of them. To make a long story short,
the USS Eisenhower was not sunk. It is virtually impossible
for non state forces like the Houthies, with the weaponry
that they currently enjoy, to sink a vessel like the Eisenhower.

(02:34:00):
And for a little bit of context on why that
is the case, I want to talk about another aircraft
carrier called the USS Independence. The Independence was one of
many many aircraft carriers produced by the United States to
curb stomp the Empire of Japan during World War Two.
After that war, we found ourselves with way more aircraft
carriers than we needed or could afford to operate indefinitely

(02:34:20):
at peacetime. So we decided to do the smartest thing
we could with all these extra aircraft carriers and nuke them.

Speaker 4 (02:34:27):
That was swait.

Speaker 1 (02:34:29):
Yes, yes, well, it's classic nineteen forty six America logic.

Speaker 4 (02:34:37):
That is true. That is true.

Speaker 1 (02:34:38):
That is so, the Independence didn't brave nuclear hell fire alone.
As part of Operations Crossroads, we detonated two nuclear bombs
within seventeen hundred feet of a fleet of ships. That's
pretty close to point blank range in nuclear weapons terms.
Fourteen ships were sunk out right by these nukes, and
the remainder were badly damaged. The Independence was one of

(02:35:00):
the boats that remained floating, though, and it actually was
towed back to San Francisco after being nuked twice. Two
nukes could not sink a nineteen forty six aircraft carrier.

Speaker 4 (02:35:12):
What are they building these things out of?

Speaker 1 (02:35:14):
They're very big, and they are if you are attacking
them above the water line, it's really hard to sink
one of these boats, right, Like, that's kind of the thing.
You can lob huge missiles and hit them with huge
missiles on the top of the thing, and that can
stop them from being able to launch aircraft. It can
kill crew, but unless you're actually blowing a big hole

(02:35:35):
in it below the water line, you're not going to
send one of these fuckers to the bottom of the ocean,
right That's just kind of sure.

Speaker 4 (02:35:41):
Physics, you know, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah yeah.

Speaker 1 (02:35:44):
So we towed the Independence back to San Francisco. They
actually built a radiation lab in the boat itself for
a while. And then that's again because the United States
be how the United States do? We filled this massive
boat with concrete drums full of radioactive waist and sunk
it thirty miles off the coast of California with two torpes.

Speaker 4 (02:36:04):
That's fucking hilarious. That rules. Hell yeah, brother, this country man.

Speaker 1 (02:36:14):
So again, once we started lobbin torpedoes at this fucker
underneath the boat, it was not wildly hard to sink
the son of a bitch, right, And that's the reality
of the situation. If the Huthies were able to get
like some subs that were capable of like actually getting
through you know, the dragnet of boats that are defending
the Enterprise, and they could get any kind of you know,

(02:36:34):
decent sized torpedo underneath it, they might have a chance
of sinking it.

Speaker 4 (02:36:38):
Photon torpedoes, photon torpedo for the Enterprise, yes, yes, yes, yes,
or a quantum torpedo.

Speaker 1 (02:36:44):
If we've moved on to d S nine Garrison.

Speaker 4 (02:36:47):
Oh, I've not started DS nine year.

Speaker 1 (02:36:48):
Oh, oh, it's great. It's the horniest star Trek Garrison,
which is shocking to it is shockingly horny. So I
want to note while I'm talking about the impossi ability
of the Huthies using their current methods, which are basically
when it comes to how they've been attacking the Eisenhower,
they've been either flying drones at it, trying to ram

(02:37:09):
it with an explosive drone, or launching cruise missiles at
it right, and all of these are basically aiming for
the top of this boat, because that's kind of the
option that they have.

Speaker 4 (02:37:17):
I was not aware that they had like advanced submarine capabilities.

Speaker 1 (02:37:21):
They sure don't as far as I'm aware they don't. Yeah,
now it is. It's worth noting potentially it could be
surprisingly easy sometimes to sink a modern aircraft carrier if
you have a decent submarine. And there's evidence of this
that came from a joint Franco US naval exercise off
to the coast of Florida in March of twenty fifteen,
where basically we're doing this exercise with the French at

(02:37:44):
one point. This French submarine is part of the Op
four which is like opposition forces during a war game,
and it sinks the Roosevelt and most of its escorts
in like a simulated battle. And this is you know,
it's very funny because like the French military posted about
this and then had to delete it because it was
really embarrassing for the Navy, and it's seen as evidence

(02:38:06):
by people who actually know their shit about naval power
and naval warfare is like, oh, US anti sub interdiction
tactics and technology really took a hit in the post
Cold War period. We stopped putting money into it because
like we thought, well, who's going to send subs after
us if the Russians are gone?

Speaker 9 (02:38:24):
Right?

Speaker 4 (02:38:24):
Yeah exactly, yeah, yea yeah yeah.

Speaker 1 (02:38:26):
So I don't mean to say that like these boats
are invulnerable. Nothing can stop the US Navy. In fact,
the evidence suggests that like a modestly powerful naval power
could do some serious damage to a carrier group in
the right circumstances. It's just the way the houthis. The
claims people are making about how the houthis sunk the
Eisenhower is not a way in which the Eisenhower could
realistically be sunk. Right, some bootleg Iranian missiles are not

(02:38:49):
going to sink the most advanced carrier in the world today.
Two nukes couldn't do a comparatively shitty carrier in nineteen
forty six. Now, this is all pretty obvious to anyone
who knows the first thing about modern naval warfare. But
it was not obvious to our citizen journalist friend, Ashton Forbes.
When numerous people pointed out to him that his claims
were absurd, he replied, yeah, I wanted to hold back

(02:39:10):
on this story in case it's not true, but I
trust my source and the media reports stink to me.
If this ends up being wrong, I'll retract. But the
implications are too huge not to report?

Speaker 4 (02:39:20):
Sure, sure, yeah, sure, buddy, why not.

Speaker 1 (02:39:23):
We're going to dig into that and the ethics of
the journalism that he claims to be practicing. But first,
the ethics of my journalism are that you should buy
whatever these advertisers are selling, and we're back. So I

(02:39:50):
really hate the too huge not to report justification. That's like,
that's incredibly unethical journalism, because like, if a story is
that huge.

Speaker 4 (02:39:59):
Actually, Robert, no, no, no, I just got an update
from a source that nine to eleven two just happened.
Oh wow, I have, I have, I have a very
blurry picture. I'm going to post it up on Twitter
right now. I can't verify, but this is if true,
this is groundbreaking, uh literally in case of you know
the ground.

Speaker 1 (02:40:20):
Yeah, and I know listeners are like, there's no way
nine to eleven two happened several days ago by the
time you listened to this episode, and I haven't heard
about it. I want to remind you about the film
Mad Max Fury Road. You know, when that came out,
none of us were expecting another Mad Max movie and
we got a great one. And I think nine to
eleven two could be the Fury Road of terrorism attacks.

Speaker 4 (02:40:41):
Real promise, real promise. They also could be censoring the story.
They may not want you to know.

Speaker 1 (02:40:46):
In case you haven't heard the news, doesn't want you
to know that nine eleven two already happened because it's
going to destroy the market for nine to eleven one memorabilia.
You know, that's everybody needs to read Manufacturing Consent by Chomsky.
He lays it all.

Speaker 4 (02:41:03):
As you're saying.

Speaker 1 (02:41:05):
So obviously, if a story is as big as this
and the sinking of the Eisenhower would be like the
most significant military reversal in the twenty first century. Maybe,
you know, I guess you could argue like the US
of leaving Afghanistan. Maybe, But honestly, from a technological standpoint,
at least the huth he's managing to drop an aircraft
carrier would be massive. And if a story is that big,

(02:41:27):
you have a responsibility not to report on it until
you have any reason at all to believe that it's true.
So when somebody says the implication or too the implications
are too huge not to report on what they mean
is I wanted the clout in traffic from getting this
out first, and I don't really care if it's true.
Now it happens to be quite easy to prove that
the USS Eisenhower is still among the living, because the

(02:41:49):
captain of that boat is a poster.

Speaker 4 (02:41:51):
His name is oh God, Oh.

Speaker 1 (02:41:54):
This man posts like you wouldn't believe Garrison. I've never
seen a commanding officer in the military who posts.

Speaker 2 (02:42:01):
Like this man.

Speaker 4 (02:42:02):
Do you think Riker would be a poster? I don't know.

Speaker 1 (02:42:06):
Riker would be. He would do a lot of dming.
He would be sliding into DMS, an awful loss like yeah, yes, absolutely,
he would constantly be trying to fuck But I think
the only reason he would actually post is when like
something broke and he couldn't figure out how to fix it,
he would he would be like adding Jordie constantly like yes,
I can't get my computer working.

Speaker 4 (02:42:28):
That makes sense.

Speaker 1 (02:42:29):
So the captain of the Enterprise is Christopher F. Hill.
And again he's a poster for reasons that I have
not bothered to look into and don't care to learn.
He goes by chowda on Twitter like with a with
a dah, I don't I don't know why, and within
minutes of the Forbes post about uh, or of of
Forbes's post, he himself posted videos of the bakery on

(02:42:51):
board the Eisenhower, which showed no signs of being underwater.
I think that was kind of his subtle way of
being like, we are still making like cinnamon rolls, like
every is fine on board this ship. In short order,
Internet Salutes discovered that the video clip posted by Forbes
that claimed to show the Eisenhower in flames was Garrison.

(02:43:11):
Do you want to guess where this what this was
a screenshot from?

Speaker 4 (02:43:14):
Is this a video game?

Speaker 1 (02:43:15):
It is a video game. It's the video game Arma three.
It's from Arma three every time, every time, whenever this
happens in the war in Ukraine too. Constantly they'll be like,
we've shot down you know, a bunch of these MiG
twenty ones, or you know, shot down this massive Russian
jet that's never been shot down before. Every time it's
Arma three, like every single time.

Speaker 4 (02:43:37):
Unbelievable.

Speaker 1 (02:43:39):
Yeah, like eighty percent of the time, fake videos of
military vehicles being destroyed, it's just clips from Arma three. Now,
a brief glance into the backstory of Ashton Forbes would
have made it clear that his claims were nonsense, as
this rite up by George Allison in the UK Defense
Journal notes, Ashton Forbes, despite his self identified role as
a citizen journalist, has i'm told, a history of hosting

(02:44:00):
sensational and often unverified claims, particularly about Malaysia Airlines. Flight
three seventy was a commercial flight that disappeared in twenty
fourteen we'll en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, leading
to numerous conspiracy theories. Now we don't actually know why
MH three seventy went down. I think probably the leading
theory was that the pilot committed suicide. But even that,

(02:44:21):
I don't think that there's like strong. I don't think
it's it's very unclear, could have just been a fuck up,
something like it's we really don't know, which is why
there's so much conspiracy.

Speaker 4 (02:44:30):
It could have gone into a wormhole.

Speaker 1 (02:44:31):
So it could have gone into the wormhole right now.
Forbes's belief, according to I found a post by Swift
on security, who's a popular security expert, who states that
Forbes believes MH three seventy had secret free energy tech
on it that was raptured into a wormhole by reptilians.

Speaker 4 (02:44:48):
Are you so good?

Speaker 1 (02:44:50):
Yeah, you actually got it.

Speaker 4 (02:44:51):
I was doing a bit.

Speaker 1 (02:44:52):
You got it right, Garrison, Oh my god, Swim. It's
an example of another one of the Citizen Journalist's big
scoops free energy announcement. Free Energy, otherwise known as over Unity,
is one hundred percent real. The devices exists already. I
have been told exactly how an operational device works. I

(02:45:15):
signed an NDA, so won't be able to disclose specifics.

Speaker 4 (02:45:19):
One hundred.

Speaker 1 (02:45:21):
That's great. I love that the people who figure out
free energy would let you post about it as long
as you don't explain how it works.

Speaker 4 (02:45:30):
I like that you signed an NDA, so you can't
talk about it except for this post in what you
do talk about it, and which have absolutely talk about
classic classic move Now.

Speaker 1 (02:45:39):
Once Forbes's post started to gain traction, the entire ecosystem
of infogrifters who cropped up like mushrooms to profit off
the massacre in Gaza swung into gear thanks to Elon's
new ownership of Twitter, Being able to draw viral crowds
to your content by latching onto the most discussed topics
of the day is very profitable, as we discussed, and
into this mix you do have some state funded actors.

(02:46:00):
You've got people working for Iran, for Israel, for Russia,
for the United States, all trying to push their own
sundry lines of propaganda using the engines of algorithmic virality.
And then, of course there are the legitimately hopeful but
ill informed. And these are the people that I have
sympathy with and who I'm kind of like focusing on.
These are people who are understandably numb from constant exposure

(02:46:22):
to a barrage of photos and videos of war crimes,
and they are desperately ready to believe in some kind
of miraculous underdog victory.

Speaker 7 (02:46:31):
Right.

Speaker 1 (02:46:31):
Hollywood fiction has trained us all to see that as possible.
This is being thought of by a lot of people
who are just numb and broken from videos of horror
as like, well, I don't know, maybe we could have
our Star Wars moment, right, maybe we've got a Luke
Skywalker downing the death Star. Now the houthis aren't Luke Skywalker,
and the Eisenhower isn't entirely the death Star. It's like

(02:46:53):
it's got shades of Death Star. It's DNA, it's got
some Death Star DNA and it sure yeah.

Speaker 4 (02:47:00):
I mean it's closer to closer to a star.

Speaker 1 (02:47:01):
Destroyer, closer to a star destroyer right right right. One
of the posts I came across researching this was Alden Marky,
who describes himself as a counter propagandist and researcher with
a focus on Yemen. He posted a photoshop of the
Eisenhower from above with a dagger in the water beneath it.
This was accompanied by the text uss Eisenhower was just
struck for the second time in twenty four hours, and

(02:47:22):
it had something like two thousand likes, two hundred and
fifty thousand views when I came across it. Another account
quote tweeted this and got nearly five thousand likes, saying
it won't happen, but it would be so fucking funny
if Yeman sinks an aircraft carrier, like can you imagine?
And I think that guy represents the more common attitude,
which is this mix of on we and desperation. Right,

(02:47:43):
nothing is going to stop this massacre. It seems like that.
It really feels like that, right, But wouldn't it be
rad if something did? And to be realistic, I don't
know that. I think there's a real odds that dropping
the Eisenhower somehow would stop netnyahou from what he's doing.
I mean maybe it would, like it would certainly reduce
the ability of the United States to interdict Iranian messles
coming into Israel, But I don't know that. I think

(02:48:05):
that it's realistic that that's going to stop net Yahoo
from doing the shit that net Yaho's doing. You can
feel however you want about that. It's not irrational to
be like, boy, I don't think this is real, but
like I wish it was, right, So you can feel
however you want about this guy. Wanting, you know, thousands
of US soldiers to get murdered. I get both, Like,

(02:48:27)</