The Guardian, April 7, 2021
The rising number of migrant children and families seeking to cross the US border with Mexico is emerging as one of the most serious political challenges for Joe Biden’s new administration.
That’s exactly what Donald Trump wants: he and other Republicans believe that Americans’ concerns about a supposed “border crisis” will help Republicans win back political power.
But Harsha Walia, the author of two books about border politics, argues that there is no “border crisis,” in the United States or anywhere else. Instead, there are the “actual crises” that drive mass migration – such as capitalism, war and the climate emergency – and “imagined crises” at political borders, which are used to justify further border securitization and violence.
Walia, a Canadian organizer who helped found No One Is Illegal, which advocates for migrants, refugees and undocumented people, talked to the Guardian about Border and Rule, her new book on global migration, border politics and the rise of what she calls “racist nationalism.” The conversation has been edited for length and clarity.