Trump is holding thousands of people in ‘concentration camps’ on the US border

Donald Trump and refugees at Mexico/US border

Donald Trump’s administration is running “concentration camps” on the US-Mexico border, according to expert analysis.

“Mass detention of civilians without trial”

Andrea Pitzer is the author of One Long NightA Global History of Concentration Camps. Her book examines the way “camp systems have been used as tools for civilian relocation, political repression, and extermination”. It also explains:

Often justified as a measure to protect a nation, or even interned groups themselves, camps have instead served as brutal and dehumanizing sites that have claimed the lives of millions.

In a 13 June report from Esquire, Pitzer speaks of the current situation under Trump, saying:

We have what I would call a concentration camp system and the definition of that in my book is, mass detention of civilians without trial.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez drew attention to this assertion on Twitter. She also pointed out a key distinction that “concentration camps are not the same as death camps”:

Read on...

Comparison with the Holocaust means many people refuse to accept this reality. But the Nazis first set up concentration camps in 1933 to “concentrate enemies and certain groups of people in one place”. Later, they developed more systematic and brutal methods of control, including death camps.

And that’s a fact Ocasio-Cortez has been having to repeat for those critics finding it difficult to catch on:

Living hell

Since taking office, Trump has led a racist fearmongering mission against people who are fleeing extreme violence and poverty in their home countries – a situation resulting from decades of brutal US intervention throughout Latin America.

As Esquire explains, “insufficient resources, overcrowding, and deteriorating conditions” create misery, suffering and death in concentration camps – including those currently in the US. As NBC reported, since Trump came to power, 24 people have died in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody. And since September, another six children – supposedly under the care and protection of other agencies – also died.

It already seems that more children will be detained in 2019 than the record 59,171 taken into custody in 2016. Up to April 2019, authorities detained 40,900 children, a 57% increase from 2018.

The situation is deteriorating further. On 11 June, Time reported that Fort Sill can hold 1,400 children in a facility “once used as an internment camp for Japanese-Americans during World War II”. Why? Because the existing 168 child detention facilities can’t cope.

And Trump is now boasting about ICE rounding up more families. As Washington Post journalist Nick Miroff suggested, this isn’t normal presidential behaviour:


‘Injecting the framework of war into society’

Pitzer describes concentration camps as “a deliberate choice to inject the framework of war into society itself”. And this is exactly what Trump’s doing. The Trump administration created this ‘war’, labelling some of the most vulnerable children, women and men from Central America as the ‘enemy’ in the process.

We know from the horrors of history where this can lead. That’s why Trump must be stopped, before it’s too late.

Featured images via six7777/Flickr and U.S. Customs and Border Protection/Flickr

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us
  • Show Comments
    1. The UK similarly could be accused of having ‘concentration camps’ – camps where a concentration of large numbers are held within secure perimeters. The UK’s ‘concentration camps’ are labelled ‘detention centres’ which hold large numbers of immigrants during a period while ID and rights are researched to requests from immigrants to stay or find asylum. ‘The UK has one of the largest immigration detention systems in Europe – and is the only country in the region without a statutory time limit on length of detention.’ Type into your browser ‘UK border holding detention centres’ and one soon becomes very enlightened by our nation’s ‘concentration camps’.

    2. Dear Ms Lea Lockley,
      Yes you are correct they are “concentration camps”; Here’s the problem with the media: even opposition to Govt policies are carried out ONLY along sanctioned lines of discussion, pre-thought out, pre-packaged. The entire “layered” communications strategy helps the elite. Even in the US there’s coverage about “the outrage” “the inhumanity” etc, but never the CAUSES:

      Why is that? To top it off, in the US you now have prominent media pundits saying that calling it “concentration camps” desecrates the memory of their original concentration camps, as if one were real the other isn’t.!!!!

      As such, the Media, unwittingly or wittingly, plays into the hands of the devilish elite. By SOLELY focussing on poor conditions, you are merely greasing the wheels for an EVEN BIGGER “capital improvements” financial contract/hand-out to the private prison industry, without discussing first principles. Institutionalized Immorality for profit is de-rigeur throughout the anglo-sphere, and the media are NOT helping, they are complicit by discussing issues ONLY along pre-planned “limited hang-outs” carved out to only profit the evil doers further! Shame! A pox on this!

    Leave a Reply

    Join the conversation

    Please read our comment moderation policy here.