You Just Keep on Pushing My Troops Over the Borderline


Over at the lefty Texas Observer, Mary Jo McConahay sketches out the happenings along Texas's part of the Mexican border.

But the terror war here is not just marked by the coming of soldiers. It's a campaign marked by elements of low-intensity conflict, or LIC. That is the same doctrine, codified during the Reagan administration, which shaped U.S. assistance to Central American countries in the 1980s. Areas were militarized to control local populations while insurgencies flared. There's no insurgency here, but there are drug runners and unlawful immigrants. LIC includes military deployment, such as that of the Guard, and paramilitary presence, like the Minutemen, but it's more. It's a doctrine that blurs the lines between civilian and military, and between local and federal authorities. It's a doctrine that calls for militarization in the name of national security, turns civilians into suspects, puts rights at risk, changes the air, uses fear as a tool of control.

It's a little heated, but it's a snapshot of changes at the border that fell from the national spotlight as soon as… why did immigration fall out of the spotlight again? Was it because of the spinach thing?