- Pope Francis meets Meriam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman sentenced to death
- Detroit porch shooting trial: Suspect says he didn’t know gun was loaded
- U.S. Navy admiral ‘receptive’ to giving Chinese counterpart a tour of carrier
- Islamic State orders female genital mutilation for Mosul girls, U.N. says
- Israeli fire hits U.N. facility in Gaza, killing 15
- Obama encourages ICE to stand down, say former border agents
- Pro-Palestinian protesters attack Israeli soccer team in Austria match
- Virginia police: 2 dead after storm at campground
- Ukrainian prime minister announces resignation
- House members question $17 billion VA request
Deported illegals persist in quest to reclaim lives in U.S. shadows
Question of the Day
TULTITLAN, Mexico — Alfonso Cordova lived in the United States for 30 years. He has a wife and two grown sons in Los Angeles, where he owned an auto repair shop until two months ago when he was deported to his native El Salvador.
Mr. Cordova, who spoke perfect English inside a packed migrant shelter here, now is scrambling to find a way back into the United States.
“I got a DUI one night,” said the 44-year-old, who briefly lived in Laurel, Md., before settling in Los Angeles. “I was stupid. I just made a mistake, and I got busted.”
The vast majority of undocumented Central Americans passing through Mexico are young first-timers, fleeing violence, unemployment and impoverished conditions in their home countries. But Mr. Cordova’s story of seeking to reclaim a life in the shadows of U.S. law is not uncommon.
“I lived in Florida for five years,” said Sebastian Ponce, 35, a native of Honduras who was deported from the United States in February.
His ultimate goal, however, is to make it back to Miami, where he earned $12 an hour working construction from 2007 through 2011.
“I was sending home about $250 a month. Now I’m going back to make more money,” Mr. Ponce said. “In Honduras, there’s no work and if you can find it, it pays only about $10 a day.”
U.S. Department of Homeland Security statistics show that the number of migrants captured while attempting to cross the southern U.S. border illegally has declined sharply in recent years.
The number of Border Patrol apprehensions, a generally accepted barometer for illegal immigration in the United States, plummeted from 1,189,000 in 2005 to fewer than 465,000 in 2010.
The Pew Hispanic Center, meanwhile, released a study Monday saying that net migration from Mexico has fallen to zero, suggesting that the 40-year tide of some 12 million Mexican nationals crossing into the United States — more than half of them illegally — has come to an end. From 2005 to 2010, about 1.4 million Mexicans migrated to the United States and a similar number of Mexican immigrants and their U.S.-born children moved from the U.S. to Mexico, according to the Pew Hispanic Center.
“The standstill appears to result from the weakened U.S. job market, heightened border enforcement, a rise in deportations, the growing dangers associated with illegal border crossings, and changing economic and demographic conditions in Mexico,” the center said on its website, www.pewhispanic.org.
While all of those factors may be true, ample evidence in Mexico shows that the number of Central Americans such as Mr. Cordova and Mr. Ponce migrating north continues unabated and may even be surging.
On Sunday, the Mexico City newspaper La Jornada cited interviews with relief workers at Catholic Church-run migrant shelters throughout southern and eastern Mexico in a report that said the number of Central Americans heading north has increased by 100 percent in recent weeks.
In some cases, women and children are also making the journey.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Guy Taylor is the National Security Team Leader at The Washington Times, overseeing the paper’s State Department, Pentagon and intelligence community coverage. He’s also a frequent guest on The McLaughlin Group and C-SPAN.
His series on political, economic and security developments in Mexico won a 2012 Virginia Press Association award.
Prior to rejoining The Times in 2011, his work was ...
- U.S. intelligence nearly certain pro-Russian separatists downed Malaysian Airlines flight
- Israel's ambassador praises Obama, slams Human Rights Watch report
- U.S. scrambles as violence escalates in Israel-Hamas conflict
- MH17: Fear of ground-to-air missile strike becomes nightmare reality in Ukraine
- U.S., China to participate in unprecedented joint ground force exercise
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
The subsidies are a hit with patients who don't exist
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- Obama's empty tough-talk: Gun prosecutions plummet on his watch
- Algerian plane diverted due to storms, second aircraft: 116 missing
- Whistleblowers flood VA with lawsuits despite apology
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Obama says public not familiar enough with issues
- Obama dispatches researchers to border to check on National Guard
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- Astronaut shares 'saddest photo' from space: Bombs bursting over Israel, Gaza
- Conservative groups decry Democrats' 'war on women' tactic
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq